(BVA Release) Commenting on reports that rabies has been confirmed in the Netherlands in two puppies from Bulgaria, British Veterinary Association President Robin Hargreaves said:
“This is deeply worrying news and far too close for comfort. It must be a wake-up call to UK authorities to ensure that enforcement of pet movements into the UK remains a priority.
“We have been raising concerns with the Government that the changes in legislation last year had significant unintended consequences in boosting the number of puppies and kittens coming to the UK for sale.
“Although the pet travel scheme is not intended to cover commercial movements, the fact that animals can enter the UK at a younger age has meant that people are abusing the legislation for this purpose with potentially grave consequences.
“The Government must review current enforcement of the legislation and be certain that we have the right measures in place to protect the UK’s rabies-free status.
“The news from the Netherlands should also be a serious wake-up call to potential pet owners who must always ask about the animal’s background and ask to see it with its mother.”