High Court backs ban on pet shock collars in Wales

Image caption,
The ban has been supported by animal welfare groups such as the Kennel Club

A ban on the use of electric shock collars to train cats and dogs in Wales has been upheld by the High Court.

The legislation was passed in March but challenged by Petsafe Ltd, which makes pet products, and the Electronic Collar Manufacturers Association.

Sitting at the High Court in London, the judge dismissed the challenge and ruled the ban lawful.

The assembly government's ban had attracted support from animal welfare groups such as the RSPCA.

"A number of groups, including the Kennel Club, have been campaigning for some time to ban them because they have the potential to have adverse consequences for animals, and are cruel and unnecessary.

"Others maintain the scientific evidence does not support a ban or regulation, and that the devices help to avoid injury to animals on roads or at the hands of farmers protecting their stock."

The legislation prohibits the use on cats or dogs of any electronic collar designed to administer an electric shock.

Rural Affairs Minister Elin Jones said: "The decision to ban the use of these shock collars came after three separate public consultations and notification to the European Commission.

"Legislation to implement the ban was passed unanimously by the National Assembly for Wales on 23 March, 2010 and came into effect the following day.

"Today's decision vindicates our careful approach in making these regulations.

"In Wales, reward-based training and control of animals is acceptable. The use of collars which deliver an electric shock to a dog or cat is not."

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