(Kennel Club Press Release) Dog welfare organisation the Kennel Club supported Baroness Miller of Chilthorne Domer yesterday after she secured a House of Lords debate on electric shock collars. Baroness Miller questioned the government’s current proposal to introduce guidance for the use of collars as opposed to an outright ban and called for further action to be taken to protect dog welfare.
The short debate follows Matthew Offord’s Ten Minute Rule Bill presented in the House of Commons earlier this year which calls for a ban on the sale and use of electric shock collars. It is scheduled to have its Second Reading in June.
The Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) funded two pieces of research on electric shock collars which were published last summer and show that electric shock collars can cause long term negative behavioural and physiological changes in dogs, even when used by professional trainers following an industry set standard of training.
The research also showed that most owners did not read the instruction manuals or chose to ignore the advice provided which leaves these devices open to misuse by users.
The Kennel Club commissioned an independent survey on public opinion in England regarding electric shock collars which found that 72% of the public disapprove of the use of electric shock collars and 74% would support the government in introducing a ban on electric shock collars.
Baroness Miller (above) explains: “I chose to raise this important issue in the House of Lords to put pressure on the government to take further action on the issue of electric shock collars. With the publication of DEFRA’s research, the welfare organisations’ opposition to their use and the increased public support for a ban, there is a need for the government to reassess their current proposal.
“A number of countries have already introduced a ban on electric shock collars, including Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Switzerland. The Welsh government also banned electric shock collars in 2010. This legislation has helped them to better protect dog welfare and I strongly urge the government to consider this and take further action.”
Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, commented: “The Kennel Club commends the work of Baroness Miller in keeping this issue in the government’s consciousness. Stronger action must be taken by the government in order to better protect the welfare of all dogs in the UK.
“We are wholeheartedly against the use of electric shock collars and believe a ban is the only real option to help ensure that pets are trained without the risk of stress and pain. We will therefore continue campaigning with the public’s support to achieve a ban on these irresponsible and detrimental devices.”
For more information on the Kennel Club’s electric shock collar campaign, click here.