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Recommended animal welfare reforms revealed

Report to go before Tynwald next week

A public register of offenders is needed to ensure anyone convicted of animal cruelty is barred from keeping animals.

The Island also needs a 24/7 dog warden service.

Those proposals are among 12 recommendations from a body which assessed the issue of animal welfare following a petition, presented in July 2014, by Port Erin woman Roseleen Harrison.

The select committee report will go before Tynwald next week.

Ms Harrison stated there was a serious lack of legislation to protect neglected and abused animals.

The select committee has since heard from a range of witnesses, including the Manx SPCA, which admitted it had encountered an increase in cases of neglect, cruelty and distress in recent years.

Among its recommendations are for the Department of Environment, Food and Agriculture to establish an animal welfare forum, introduce an animal welfare bill, progress plans to make microchipping dogs compulsory and introduce legislation to protect pets travelling on and off Island.

In 2013, the dog warden’s service was reduced, with the MSPCA often rescuing stray dogs outside office hours free of charge.

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