Strict new crackdown on ‘dangerous’ breeding might see pugs and French bulldogs banned across the UK. Here’s what you need to know about the possible nationwide ban on these flat-faced breeds
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Flat-faced breeds of dogs like pugs and French Bulldogs have grown in popularity in the UK over the past decade or so, making up 20% of dogs in the country.
However, according to pet charity Blue Cross, increased popularity of these dog breeds have led to poor breeding techniques, causing these pooches to develop nasty health defects.
The animal charity, which has accused breeders of a “vicious cycle of over-breeding”, called for a strict crackdown on poor breeding of flat-faced dogs, which could in turn lead to a ban on these pups in the UK.
Why could pugs and French bulldogs be banned in the UK?
Blue Cross has accused dog breeders of bad breeding techniques, which it said have sparked health conditions such as pulmonic stenosis (heart murmurs) in flat-faced mutts.
According to the charity, the trend of “cute” advertisements and social media posts has led to a rise in the demand for French bulldogs and pugs.
However, due to the increased demand, there have been many cases of poor breeding, with Blue Cross vets claiming to have treated 5,000 brachycephalic pets in the past two years.
Blue Cross is campaigning to end this trend of horrendously bad breeding of brachycephalic pets, which includes animals such as French bulldogs, pugs and Persian cats.
Becky Thwaites, head of public affairs at Blue Cross, told The Sun: “We have already started contacting MPs. Ultimately Blue Cross is determined to see the end of the poor breeding of and are considering all options both legislative and non-legislative to achieve this.”
Which dog breeds are banned in the UK and what happens to a banned dog?
Currently, four breeds of dogs are banned in the UK. These are the Pit Bull Terrier, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentino and Fila Brasileiro.
According to the government, whether a dog is banned or not is based “on what it looks like, rather than its breed or name”.
However, the RSPCA argues that dogs “should not be judged on how they look”, calling for this policy to be changed.
Right now, if a dog breed is banned, police and council wardens have the power to remove any dog from that breed, even if it’s not acting dangerously or there has been no complaint.
In a public place, police can confiscate the dog without any restriction. But officers do need to issue a warrant before seizing a banned dog that is in a private place.