Dear Members,

I would like to offer a warm and festive welcome to everyone. As chairman of The Dobermann Club (DC), I would like to clarify the situation surrounding the demise of the Dobermann Breed Council and the subsequent actions agreed by your Committee that have taken place over the last few months. We, as a committee, have made the decision to issue the following statement:

The Dobermann Breed Council (DBC) was deregistered by the Kennel Club due to the General Committee's decision that it was no longer quorum (as per statement detailed in the United Kingdom Partnership (UKDP) Facebook page dated 1st August 2014). This information was also uploaded to the DC website.

The UKDP was formed in response to the Kennel Club's reaction to the DBC proposal for a biomarker grant. All four Secretaries of the Clubs remaining within the DBC at the time of the Kennel Club's decision agreed to contact the Kennel Club for advice in the setting up of a working party committee to promote the health of the dobermann, offer education in the way of seminars to encourage future judges and to offer judges lists and criteria to promote said judges. This request was answered by the Kennel Club Breed Show Team who stated 'the four clubs mentioned below can form a working party for the proposal of first time judges'. However the Breed Show Team also outlined that this would not be recognised officially.

This was followed up by contact from the KC Charitable Trust Administrator who stated that the KC were happy to receive an application from the four clubs working together on the health issues relating to the breed. The KCCT Administrator also requested a name that the grant (should if approved) be made payable to.

Under the DC rule 5 'the Powers of the Committee: The management of the club shall be wholly vested in the officers and committee'. A committee decision, which was based on all available information was made that the four clubs should continue to work together under the label UKDP. A statement was issued publically on the 19th August 2014 outlining that all four clubs had formed a working party committee retaining their autonomy within the said party which fully complies with the following: KC regulation C3.a.(12) and DC club rule 5. The Kennel Club outline that no Special General Meetings are requested by the DC but note that the members require to be updated with a communication on the Agenda for the forthcoming 2015 Annual General Meeting.

It should be noted that by mid-September 2014 the above information was made available to all DC members via social media website.

As the working party committee is still in its infancy it is expected that we will encounter anomalies along the way. These will be dealt with in the correct manner by continuing to consult the KC and ratifying the KC's advice at committee meetings. It should be noted that all working party judging criteria and lists were sent to the Kennel Club for approval, we were notified by the Kennel Club that the criteria and judges lists (with amendments) have now been filed into respected clubs appropriate files.

I hope that the above statement provides clarification of any committee decisions regarding deregistration of the DBC and the formation and continuation of the UKDP. I would like to end this correspondence by wishing all members a warm seasons' greetings.

Derek King
Chairman, The Dobermann Club

The Animal Welfare Act

The Animal Welfare Act is due to come into effect on April 6 2007.  The Kennel Club considers that the Act will provide much greater protection for animals by introducing a new welfare offence. This will for the first time protect thousands of animals from neglect, by legally obliging owners to care for their pets properly. 

While the Kennel Club welcomes the new legislation it is still concerned with certain aspects of the Act. However despite this, in order to keep all dog owners aware of how this new law will affect them, the Kennel Club has compiled a series of ‘Frequently Asked Questions’.

Frequently asked questions

  1. If there are already existing animal welfare laws in place why is new animal welfare legislation required?
    Since the Protection of Animals Act 1911 has been amended 9 times, there was general agreement that the legislation needed to be consolidated into one piece of legislation.  The Animal Welfare Act was also introduced to bring existing legislation up-to-date and make it easier to ensure prosecutions could occur.
  2. What will happen to the existing animal welfare legislation?
    Most existing animal welfare legislation will be replaced by the Animal Welfare Act. Schedule 4 of the Act details exactly what legislation will be repealed.
  3. When does the new animal welfare legislation come into effect?
    The new legislation will come into force from 6 April 2007.
  4. Will all the powers of this new legislation come into force at the same time?
    No. Certain parts of the legislation will come into force quite some time after April 2007. Since the Government designed the Act to be an ‘enabling’ piece of legislation it allows for regulations relating to it to be passed at a later date.
  5. Will the Animal Welfare Act apply to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland?
    The legislation will not apply to Scotland or Northern Ireland.  However the Scottish Executive passed the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act, which is similar to the Animal Welfare Act. The Scottish Act has already come into force except for the mutilations clause (which will address tail docking).  Click here for further information on the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act.
  6. The Animal Welfare Act will apply to Wales but the Welsh Assembly will have the power to introduce its own secondary legislation
    At present Northern Ireland’s Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD) is currently consulting on its own version of the Act. Click here for further details.
  7. What is the duty of care clause and how will this affect me?
    The duty of care clause should not affect responsible dog owners. Rather it will make it a legal requirement for all owners and keepers of pets to provide for the basic needs of their animals. 
    These include:
    a proper diet (including water
    somewhere suitable to live
    any need to be housed with, or apart from, other animals as appropriate
    allowing animals to express normal behaviour
    protection from, and treatment of, illness and injury
    Further information about how best to look after your dog’s needs
  8. What is deemed as being a ‘suitable’ diet, environment etc for my dog?
    Identifying what sort of diet and environment is suitable for your dog will very much depend on the size and breed of your dog.  If you are in doubt you can consult the dog code which Defra will publish when the Act is introduced or the Kennel Club website.
  9. Is docking illegal under the Animal Welfare Act?
    The Act bans docking with an exemption for working dogs used for their traditional job of work (as defined below).
  10. Under the new legislation what type of dog is defined as a working dog?
    Under the new regulations a dog is officially a working dog if a vet has certified that the dog is likely to be used for work in connection with the following:
    (1)   Law Enforcement
    (2)   Activities of the armed force
    (3)   Emergency Rescue
    (4)   Lawful pest control
    (5)   Lawful shooting of animals.
  11. If my dog is classified as being a working dog who can dock its tail and when can its tail be docked?
    Only a vet can dock the tail of your puppy. Your litter must be docked within the first 5 days of their lives.
  12. Do I have to prove my dog is a working dog if I wish for its tail to be docked?  How can I prove this and what official paperwork will be given to me to prove my dog has been legally docked?
    Your vet must certify that your dog is likely to be used in connection with the group of activities under which a dog’s tail can be docked (see above.)  The sort of proof that will be required will be defined through additional regulations.
  13. Can I show my dog if it has been docked?
    If your dog’s tail was docked before the new legislation comes into effect in April 2007 you will be able to continue to show your dog at all shows. If your working dog is docked legally after the law comes into force however, you will not be able to show your dog at events where there is a paying audience, other than to demonstrate purely your dog’s working ability.
  14. Is there anything else I need to do if I dock my working puppies tails?
    Before the dog is 3 months old, it must be identified as a certified working dog in accordance with government regulations.
  15. How can a breeder/pet shop owner check that a person is over 16?  Would a breeder/pet shop owner be prosecuted if they sold an animal to a person who is under 16?
    If they are in doubt about the age of a customer they should not sell them an animal. Instead they should ask the potential customer to return with proof of age for example, a passport, or with their parent or guardian.
  16. How will the Act affect shooting sports?
    The Act will not affect traditional field sport practices due to the fact that free ranging game birds are deemed to be wild and are therefore not covered by the new legislation.
  17. Who or what governing body will be defined as an inspector?
    There are no plans to enforce a universally recognised qualification for welfare inspectors.  The enforcement of the new legislation will be carried out by the police, local authorities and the State Veterinary Service.  Local authorities will also have the power to appoint inspectors who are considered suitable for appointment on a temporary basis.

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