Dog breeder slammed by vet over ear cropping trend
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Reporters found that breeders have been cutting or “cropping” the dogs for cosmetic reasons. This method involves removing part of the ear flap. As part of the investigation, a breeder offered one BBC Wales undercover journalist a dog for £13,000 – and made reference to the clipping of the ears which took place.
Daniella Dos Santos, former president of the British Veterinary Association (BVA), spoke of the devastation she felt about what had been exposed.
She said: “Cropping of ears is an illegal mutilation done for no other reason than… cosmetic reasons and the whole conversation throughout has been about how these dogs look.
“It’s all for status.
“There are no health benefits to these dogs at all.”
Ms Dos Santos continued: “It’s all completely illegal, the cropping of ears, the false passports, everything about this is a dodgy system.
“Yet again, looking at these animals as commodities and money making machines rather than living sentient beings.”
She added: “The reason this is happening is because there is a loophole that allows the importation of dogs with cropped ears, and that’s just acting as a smokescreen clearly for it happening in the UK.”
Moheiz Adam, a breeder, spoke of how it was “a shame” that cropping was illegal, adding that it gave dogs a “striking look”.
Mr Adam said: “[Another man] just takes care of it, brings back the paperwork… if questions are asked you basically [say] that’s how you bought it, from an Irishman.
“It came from Europe and that’s all you know.
“All of my dogs have been done by him and let’s just say as long as you get it done at the right age, it looks 10 out of 10.”
Joshua Harty, from Cardiff, another breeder in the investigation, also spoke of how cropping was possible.
He said: “To get the ears and the passport and the chip is normally around £500… my vet gets them from Turkey.
“I’ve taken dogs to shows in Ireland, Spain, and obviously I’ve had to cross borders, and I’ve taken these passports and I’ve got through every time.
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“Never had a problem.”
Vanessa Waddon, from dog rescue charity Hope, has been caring for dogs who have been seized by Cardiff council from illegal breeders.
Ms Waddon said: “Whenever celebrities post things online, people inevitably think ‘oh that dog looks nice, maybe I’ll get one like that.
“While [the celebrities] may have imported the dogs legally, there are people cropping illegally in the UK to meet demand.”
She continued: “Ear cropping is an unnecessary mutilation that is detrimental to the health and welfare of the dogs.
“We’ve seen first-hand the damage it can cause. Sadly with celebrities and influencers sharing photos of their own ear cropped dogs across social media the practice has been normalised and even glamorised.
“Thanks to the incredible #FlopNotCrop campaign to ban imports of mutilated dogs and puppies, hopefully breeders will soon no longer be able to hide behind the smokescreen of legal imports.
“But enforcement will be key and it’s vital proper resources are put in place to monitor and take action where necessary.”
Dogs Trust have been contacted on this matter.
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