Nearly there: ban on electric shock collars welcome, but containment fences remain an issue

The RSPCA, one of the animal welfare bodies that campaigned for a complete ban of the use of electric shock collars, has welcomed yesterday’s announcement by the government that it would ban the sale of electric shock collars. The charity, however, announced its disappointment that remote electronic training collars were excluded from the ban.

“The RSPCA strongly believes that in modern-day society there is no excuse or need for the use of devices which can compromise cat and dog welfare, especially when humane and viable alternatives to training and containing dogs and cats are available,” dog welfare expert Dr Sam Gaines said.

Dr Rachel Casey, director of canine behaviour and research at Dogs Trust, added: “Scientific research has demonstrated that electronic devices, which deliver an aversive stimulus have a negative impact on dog welfare, so this ban will have a major positive impact for dogs in the UK.

“However, we are saddened that the government hasn’t gone a step further and used this opportunity to ban the use of containment fences, to ensure that all UK dogs are protected from this outdated approach to training.”

The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs and environment secretary Michael Gove announced on Monday will bring in a ban on the use but not on the sale of shock collars under the Animal Welfare Act. However, the ban will not include electric containment fences, but the government will amend the statutory Code of Practice for the Welfare of Dogs, and the equivalent for cats, to ensure electric fences are used as a last resort, installed by professionals.

Image at post top: Dogs Trust

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