The Scottish environment secretary, Roseanna Cunningham, has announced that steps will be taken to ban electronic training collars for dogs, despite a decision in November to allow the collars to be used under trained supervision, which followed a lengthy public consultation on the matter. The new stance follows pressure from opposition MSPs, as well as backbenchers in the SNP.

Ms Cunningham said: “Causing pain to dogs by inappropriate training methods is clearly completely unacceptable and I want there to be no doubt that painful or unpleasant training for dogs will not be tolerated.”

However BASC said that the decision could risk the lives of dogs with serious behavioural problems. “BASC and many other organisations and individuals made the case that the use of such remote training devices had been incredibly helpful in addressing problematic behaviour, such as sheep worrying, in a small number of dogs,” said the organisation’s Scotland direct Dr Colin Shedden. “Without the restricted but effective use of these devices, many otherwise well-behaved family pets and working dogs would probably have had to be put down.”


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