The Kennel Club (KC) has announced plans to register no more than four litters from any one bitch after concerns that so-called ?puppy farmers? are overbreeding animals. Campaigners have long maintained that the current regulations, which restrict breeding females to one litter per year and six per lifetime, do not go far enough, and can potentially be detrimental to an animal?s welfare.

Bill Lambert, the KC?s health and breeder services manager, said: ?The KC wants to ensure that all breeders put the health and welfare of their puppies and breeding bitches first and this decision underlines its commitment to this issue.

?The law allows bitches to have six litters in a lifetime, but the vast majority of responsible breeders feel that this is too many and that there is potential for this to have a negative impact on the welfare of the bitch.?

The KC is also in discussion with major veterinary organisations, including the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons (RCVS) and the British Veterinary Association, over restrictions on the number of litters born by Caesarean section that may be registered from an individual bitch.

The rest of this article appears in 1st December issue of Shooting Times.

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