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Tail docking is set to be banned when the Animal Welfare Bill becomes law next year. The exemption for working dogs means gundogs can still be docked, but cosmetic docking and the showing of docked dogs will be outlawed.

The bill, will make it illegal for docked dogs to be shown at events that people have paid to attend. A number of ST readers, who show and race their terriers, have voiced concern as to whether the showing and racing of working terriers will also become outlawed under a ban aimed at cosmetic docking.

Terrier racing should be exempt from the Bill, though the way terriers are shown will have to change. Camilla Giddy, from the political department at the Countryside Alliance (CA), told ST: ?Under the bill, dogs can be shown for the purpose of demonstrating their working ability and terrier racing is, in a sense, the exhibiting of a dog?s working ability. There would have to be an aspect of the show that displays working ability ? running through a pipe, for example ?

but showing a docked terrier on a lead in the ring, as we know it, will not be allowed.?