This APDAWG meeting will explore puppy buying experiences & behaviours during the pandemic, helping to build an understanding of the changes in buying behaviours & intentions over this period.
2020 was unusual for many reasons, but for animal welfare, one issue really stood out and is still making an impact today. The boom in puppy demand was like many things at that time, unprecedented, as the British public scrambled to get their hands on a puppy to keep them company during Lockdown; with motives varying from protecting mental health & fear of isolation, to a having a pet project to train or just something to keep the kids happy.
Unsurprisingly, Lockdown pups came with their own issues as it became normal, with social distancing restrictions & in the course of a business, for puppies to be delivered without being seen interacting with their mums in the place they were born, from being legally (& illegally) shipped into UK from overseas puppy farms often thousands of miles away, or sometimes not even there being a puppy at all with scams rife & even one story of a guinea pig being sold as a £2K puppy!
With puppy prices through the roof & cases of pet theft significantly higher too, social distancing also meant inadequate socialisation & increased likelihood of future behavioural problems; not to mention the current worrying spike in pet abandonment as puppies become less cute, more expensive to keep & are either handed into shelters or resold online to help recoup the initial financial layout.
With some excellent studies into pandemic puppy buying behaviour already completed by organisations represented by some of our guest speakers listed below, we'll aim to assess whether there are any themes, patterns & most importantly things we can learn to help us protect dog welfare in the future.
Finally, with the current sad & utterly predictable spike in abandonment of adolescent pups purchased in first Lockdown, as well as certain influential organisations still advising Government of their concerns for the "need" to always supply a puppy demand & seemingly at any cost, but now with same organisations appearing to show similar concerns regarding these increased levels of abandonment, is it also now time to finally change that disturbing narrative too?
Speakers include representatives from:
1. Royal Vet College (RVC)
Additional speakers giving individual presentations:
Dr Belinda Johnston MA VetMB MRCVS - Our Special Friends - discussing putting research into practice to support invisibly vulnerable and voiceless people and animals.
Helen Howell BSc (Hons) ACDBC - Canine Behaviour Consultant & Expert Witness - discussing the welfare of dogs that have been seized by the police that are kennelled pending legal proceedings.
We would also like to take this opportunity to thank our sponsors the UK Centre for Animal Law (A-law) & Our Dogs newspaper for their fantastic support of APDAWG.
Marc Abraham BVM&S MRCVS - Secretariat & Co-Founder
Dr Lisa Cameron MP - Chair
This is a free event. For more info & to register, please use the button below & Zoom link will be sent out on day.