Dog owners warned about huge rule change as pet accessory is banned
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Dog owners are being warned about a major new rule change as a popular pet accessory is banned.
While there are many products for our pets that bring nothing but joy to their lives (Kong toys, I’m mostly looking at you), there are some that seem to benefit the owner more than their four-legged friends.
This includes electric shock collars, which are often used to train dogs but have been slammed as not only ‘unnecessary’ by animal campaigners, but even ‘cruel’.
The collars have now been banned in England, thanks to a new law due to come into effect on 1 February next year.
They have already been banned in Wales for 13 years, while France also put a stop to them in January this year.
The controversial devices deliver electric shocks to dogs’ necks via a remote control, which can be administered by the user for up to 11 seconds each time.
The shocks can also be sent to the animal up to two miles away.
When the ban was first announced, the government said the collars can be ‘misused to inflict unnecessary harm and suffering’, adding: “There’s also evidence e-collars can re-direct aggression or generate anxiety-based behaviour in pets - making underlying behavioural and health problems worse.”
The new law has been welcomed by The Kennel Club, which has been campaigning for the move for the past decade and says five percent of dog owners reportedly use shock collars.
The organisation said there is ‘wide-ranging evidence’ demonstrating the detrimental effect electric shock collars have on the welfare of dogs, and plans to continue campaigning for the same laws to be introduced in Scotland - saying a complete ban across the UK would mean half a million dogs being ‘saved from being trained by these highly aversive devices’.
Mark Beazley, Chief Executive of The Kennel Club, said: "The legislation banning electric shock collars in England, which comes into force next year, is a historic moment for animal welfare and will put an end to the misery and suffering of countless dogs who are still subject to these cruel and unnecessary devices.
"There is simply no excuse for using these devices, which cause physical and psychological harm, especially given the vast array of positive training methods available.
“This is the culmination of over a decade of campaigning for us and we applaud Defra for helping to safeguard the welfare of our nation’s much-loved dogs.
"More action is urgently needed in Scotland, where regulations are needed to replace the ineffective guidance currently in place, and we will not rest until we see the complete ban on these devices that cause suffering and harm.”