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Puppy problem raised in Westminster

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By Fiona Reid
Annan and Eskdale

THE increasing problem of puppy trafficking has been taken to the heart of Westminster by a Dumfries politician.

Dumfries and Galloway MP Richard Arkless has been working with local representatives from Police Scotland, Stena Line, Dumfries and Galloway Council, the SSPCA, Trading Standards and influential campaigners for several months to try to put an end to this growing problem.
Speaking about the issue, he said: “One of the best ways we can stop the illegal trade of puppies is to raise awareness of the issue.
“I’ve tabled an Early Day Motion which should help to highlight this issue at Westminster. Scotland must take the lead on this issue and apply pressure on the rest of the UK to follow suit.
“We must make sure that the welfare of puppies and indeed any other travelling animal is the highest priority for port authorities and border staff. That is why we have identified other laws that can be used at the ports to obstruct this trade.”
He has also established support from DUP MPs in Belfast who share his concerns, adding: “They are ensuring from their side that security is stepped up.”
Puppy trafficking is a particular problem for Dumfries and Galloway as traffickers regularly use local ports as a route into Scotland.
In November four dead puppies were discovered at the side of the A77 between Cairnryan and Ballantrae.
Police suspect they were part of a shipment from Northern Ireland and tragically died during the ferry crossing before being callously dumped at the side of a busy road.

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