Petition No 0049/2015 by S. de R. (Dutch), on the compulsory vaccination of puppies
The petitioner complains about the rules for vaccinating puppies against rabies which have been in place since 29 December 2014. According to these rules, puppies cannot travel or be imported or exported for 21 days after they have been vaccinated against rabies. For pedigree puppies, this means that they have to stay with the breeder for 15 weeks. According to the petitioner, this is detrimental to puppies that have been sold abroad, since they thus miss out on the most important phase of their rearing – between the eighth and twelfth week (the primary socialisation period) – with their new owner. As soon as the puppies are allowed to travel to their new family (16th week), they are already in the second phase (secondary socialisation period). According to the petitioner, the new rules lead to behavioural problems in dogs, meaning that there will be less import and export of pedigree dogs and more inbreeding of pedigree dogs. She understands that the rules are there to provide better protection for puppies and better supervision of breeding establishments, but she expects that breeders will forge the dates on the pet passports. The petitioner claims that the EU does not take into account the breeding system used by pedigree dog breeders, or their breeder’s certificates and DNA record. Pedigree dog breeders have been struggling to gain this recognition for years. She states that a breeder’s certificate or DNA record containing all of the data relating to a puppy is a reliable system. The petitioner will continue to argue for pedigree puppies to be able to be imported and exported at 8 weeks.