Two new conditions for sale of cats, dogs and rabbits
The Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority, or AVA, has added two licencing conditions for pet retailers selling cats, dogs and rabbits.
This is to ensure animal welfare and promote responsibility pet ownership.
With effect from the 1st of January next year, these pets cannot be sold to anyone under 16 years of age.
They must be accompanied by their parents or legal guardians.
There will also be mandatory pre-sale screening for each transaction.
As part of the pre-sale screening process, both potential pet buyers and pet retailers will have to complete the Pet Purchase Declaration.
AVA says the new licensing conditions were developed in consultation with stakeholders, and in line with the Animal Welfare Legislative Review Committee's recommendations made in March 2013.
It adds that these new licensing conditions will help reduce impulse buying of pets by children and ensure potential buyers understand the implications and responsibilities of being a pet owner.
These conditions are also aimed to minimise the downstream problems of pet abandonment or poor pet care.
AVA will allow a 6 month grace period, from 1 January to 30 June 2014, to facilitate pet retailers to adjust and comply with these new licensing conditions.
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