It gives me great pleasure to inform you all that my government e-petition against puppy farming, started a few months ago in May, is now the UK's No. 1 e-petition, as well as the biggest pet welfare e-petition of all time with, as I write, well over 86,000 signatures.
What this means is that in addition to raising massive awareness about UK's cruel puppy farming trade, just 14,000 more signatures means puppy farming will be discussed in the House of Commons - imagine that - British Parliament sitting down talking about the future of this country's dogs; even more poignant with Christmas fast approaching and many children begging parents to buy puppies.
Puppy farming is the commercial mass production of puppies in horrific conditions often with no clean water, or quality food, medicine, or waste clearance. Commonly over 200 breeding bitches and stud dogs are imprisoned in one of many large concrete agricultural sheds (usually in rural Wales), all just kept alive to make more puppies for large profits.
Puppies are transported long distances and sold by third parties including pet shops, websites, garden centres, puppy supermarkets, dealers, free newspaper listings; basically anywhere well-away from pup's mum and birthplace.
These battery farmed dogs are often severely inbred suffering serious internal problems (e.g. heart, eyes, joints), then purchased complete with infectious diseases (e.g. deadly parvovirus) and behavioural issues (e.g. nervous aggression), meaning that if they survive the first week in their new home life expectancy is shortened with a future of health complaints costing hundreds (often thousands) of pounds to treat.
This campaign hopes to stop demand for poorly pups by raising much needed awareness about the correct way to choose a dog, i.e. adopt from rescue or ask "Where's Mum?" insisting on seeing her interacting with her pups.
We can't just sit back and ignore the thousands of mistreated dogs here in UK desperately needing our help. Something needs to be done - and sooner rather than later.
My thanks go to everyone who's supported and continues to support this petition - we're almost there folks! Special thanks must also go to animal-loving heroes Ricky Gervais and Jane Fallon for without their constant support we wouldn't be anywhere near where we are now.