The feline charity wants regulations put in place around the commercial selling of kittens under 8 weeks of age, with breeders needing to be licensed.
Many tragedies occur when tiny kittens are sold
Not only in Wales, but throughout the whole of the UK, unregulated breeders are selling very young kittens to naïve new owners. Many instances are reported of new-born kittens being bred and sold that are in very poor health. It is devastating that at the moment, there are less than 20 pet shops that are actually licensed to sell kittens and puppies in Wales.
Cats Protection wants the law to be changed to protect these kittens
Many small pets are advertised and sold online, where no such regulations regarding their breeding is in place. In an ideal world, cat breeding will be controlled in the same way that dog breeding is at the moment.
The Welsh Government is consulting on some amendments to both cat and dog selling. In a consultation document recently released, they state that they hope to be able to ban all third-party sales of these pets. This would mean that anyone who hasn’t actually bred the kittens or pups will not be able to resell them. The Cats Protection charity hope that these steps will prevent the increased risk of diseases and the lack of habituation and socialisation of kittens being sold.
A recent case highlighted the need for a change to the law
Cats Protection in Bridgend recently took in two tiny kittens, named Dill and Daff, after they became very ill shortly upon arrival at their new home. It appeared that the kitties were still attempting to suckle, even though they had been removed from their mother. Both were suffering from terrible stomach upsets and serious worm issues. Following an examination by a vet, it was noted that the kittens were actually only 5 weeks old and not 8 weeks as the new owners had been led to believe. One of the kittens had jaundice and both suffered from flu symptoms. It also appeared that both baby cats were deaf.
The law needs to change to protect very young kittens
Luckily, these two kittens from Bridgend were taken for prompt medical treatment, but this isn’t always the case. Many kittens suffer with no help offered and, in some cases, they become very ill and die. Dill and Daff were fortunate that the charity was able to care for them and nurse them back to full health, even though this took 4 weeks and lots of vet-supervised care. They have now been rehomed with a new family, one who can give then proper care.
Let’s hope that this new law is changed very soon, to protect all new-born kittens.