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"I'm not sleeping": Heart-breaking photo reveals reality of illegal puppy trade

A deceased puppy from an illegal puppy farm dog-serious
© Hamburger Tierschutzverein von 1841 e. V. - Facebook

The image circulating of a dead puppy has shaken us to the core and revealed the horrors of the illegal puppy trade. Now, animal lovers across Europe are desperate to see change.

By Natasha James

Published on the 29/05/2021, 21:00, Updated on the 03/06/2021, 15:50

2020 was a year like no other.

Yes, we had the Covid pandemic and subsequent lockdowns but that’s not all, the strangeness of 2020 shaped the world in ways in which we couldn’t have anticipated.

One change was the huge increase in people hoping to own a dog and following that, the subsequent explosion in the illegal puppy trade.


Unscrupulous breeding practices

It is thought that around a third more dogs became available in 2020 than in 2019, with many of the pups far too young to leave their mothers.

Dogs from illegal puppy farms are often bred and kept in the most unsanitary conditions and grow up to have numerous health problems that future owners pay thousands of pounds to fix.

In the UK, Lucy’s Law means that anyone wanting to buy a dog must do so directly from a breeder which makes it much harder for callous puppy farm owners to operate.

But, in mainland Europe, the same laws don’t yet exist.

Huge campaign

In Germany, there’s a huge campaign to stop people from buying dogs from illegal breeders. The campaigns show photos of puppy farm puppies who already at a young age, suffer from life-threatening ailments requiring critical care.

Nationwide vigils are planned for the end of May in a bid to raise awareness and garner support for potential laws to ban the practice.

We wish them all the best and hope that the vigil paves the way for big changes.

Thinking of buying a dog? Find out how to ensure a dog breeder is reputable here.