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Welfare
Scotland takes a step closer to reversing its tail docking ban

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A COMMITTEE tasked with considering evidence on tail docking in Scotland has voted in favour of reversing the ban in working dogs The vote, which was made by the Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform Committee, means that the decision to permit vets to shorten the tails of any spaniels and hunt point retrievers intended for use as working dogs will now rest with the Holyrood chamber of Scottish Government.

The tail docking ban in Scotland came into force in 2007, as part of the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006. This legislation banned procedures that interfered with the bone structure of sensitive tissues of animals for non-medical reasons; one of these procedures was tail docking. This is different from the rest of the UK where docking is permitted for working dogs of certain breeds including hunt point retrievers, spaniels and terriers.

However, last year, Roseanna Cunningham, Scotland's environment minister, proposed a change to the legislation after reportedly seeing evidence that some working dogs were suffering tail injuries. Earlier this week, MSPs voted in favour of amending legislation, by …

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