SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – Every Dutch dog will have to have a passport from 2020, according to new rules expected to be announced by environment minister Carola Schouten on Thursday.
The AD reports that in an attempt to muzzle the illegal dog trade, the government will fine breeders without the proper doggie passports in future. The documents will contain information about each dog’s origin, former owners and medical needs.
‘Someone who buys a puppy should be able to know exactly where the animal comes from,’ Shouten told the AD. ‘A passport will help.’ Each year, around 150,000 dogs are bought in the Netherlands, a third of them from abroad.
There are concerns that imported dogs can carry rabies and also have health problems if puppies are transported when they are too young. Last summer 150 puppies were discovered dehydrated, neglected and without papers, and confiscated from a breeder in Woerden.
It is currently mandatory to chip and register dogs, but the new system is intended to be even stricter and a guarantee for buyers. The passports, to be announced on ‘animal day’ (October 4), were welcomed by Dik Nagtegaal of animal protection society De Dierenbescherming.
‘This makes it harder for people with bad motives to commit fraud with dogs,’ he reportedly told the AD. ‘If there’s no passport, then you know for sure that something’s up. Don’t buy!’
It is not known whether the Dutch dog passport will offer European rights of free movement or require a strictly-posed photograph. (DutchNews)