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Policies to promote socialization and welfare in dog breeding

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Author: Morris, Amy
Dog breeding is an unregulated industry in British Columbia and most of Canada, resulting in poor outcomes in some dogs’ welfare: genetic make-up, physical health, and mental health. This suffering in dogs results in subsequent costs to taxpayers and dog guardians. This study explores the question: How can British Columbia overcome the negative externalities surrounding the welfare and socialization of dogs in the dog- breeding industry? Policies in five countries are reviewed, informed by legislation, publicly available data, and confidential interviews with key informants. Three policy options emerge from the findings: regulation, regulation with licensing and permissible inspection, or regulation, licensing, and mandatory inspection. Approaches are evaluated using a multi-criteria approach. The study recommends a comprehensive, measurable, and equitable regulation with licensing and permissible inspection. To be effective, this regulation should be implemented with adequate consultation, training, and public education.
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