Dogs are for life, not just for Christmas: East Riding of Yorkshire Council issues advice for anyone buying a puppy this Christmas

Christmas is normally a very popular time when people consider buying a puppy but the decision should not be made lightly - so here is some advice for potential puppy owners.

The festive season is an exciting time to surprise your loved one with an adorable puppy for Christmas or to take the leap and become dog owners. With so much to consider and research to get done, the process won’t be easy, though if you are committed it could be the most rewarding experience.

Deceitful pet sellers, also known as ‘petfishers’, use a similar technique to ‘catfishing’, where they pretend that the puppy or kitten they are selling you comes from a happy home. That’s why you need to be fully prepared before taking the challenge, so East Riding of Yorkshire Council has issued its advice for residents buying a puppy this Christmas.

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Portfolio holder for community empowerment and voluntary sector at East Riding of Yorkshire Council, Coun David Elvidge, said: “A puppy or a dog can be a great addition to any home but I would really urge people to think carefully and do their research before buying one. Caution should be taken when thinking about buying a dog online or via a newspaper advert and all appropriate checks and documentation should take place to ensure the purchase is legitimate.”

Five puppies. (Pic credit: Martin Rickett / PA)Five puppies. (Pic credit: Martin Rickett / PA)
Five puppies. (Pic credit: Martin Rickett / PA)

Top tips for buying a puppy this Christmas

East Riding of Yorkshire Council suggest you walk away from the decision of buying a puppy from a breeder you don’t trust and to contact the licensing team if you have any concerns regarding dog breeding or pet selling activities taking place via [email protected].

You can make further checks with the kennel club and if you are buying a pedigree puppy, you must get proof from the seller by making sure it has a registration certificate. For more information and warning signs regarding ‘petfishing’, you can visit the official petfishing government website.

Puppies bred in the UK must be at least eight weeks old before being sold. They must also be microchipped and registered to the seller. You should also enquire if the puppy is being sold fully vaccinated.

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The council also urges people to visit the puppy in person in its own environment; the puppy should be seen with its mum and ideally the rest of the litter so that you can observe how they are all interacting. Witness their behavioural personality as they should be in good health, sociable and alert and kept in a clean and comfortable environment. Never confirm to meet anywhere to view the puppy other than where it was bred.

Make sure you are provided with all the appropriate documentation, including vaccination certificates, worming and flea treatments. If you are buying a pedigree puppy, retrieve proof of this from the seller by getting a copy of their registration certificate and always get a receipt of sale.

Legally, all dog breeders should be licensed; you can confirm this with the local authority to see if a breeder is registered and within the East Riding of Yorkshire you can do this by visiting the council website or ask to see the breeder’s licence. A licensed breeder should be happy to provide proof of this and if you are buying off a website, the licence number must be on there.

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