Lucy’s Law

  • By: Mick Whitefield
  • Time to read: 4 min.

Puppy farms in and around the U.K have been selling puppies and kittens via third party pet shops for years. The problem has been around for a long time. What the public don’t see in this scenario is the living conditions of the breeding parents and what sometimes was the filthy, cramped or vile conditions that some puppies were born into.

What is Lucy’s Law? Lucy’s Law is a new act of Parliament in the U.K. that bans the sale of puppies and kittens from pet shops. The new law comes into force as of the 6th of April 2020. This law requires “animals to be born and reared in a safe environment, with their mother, and to be sold from their place of birth”. The so named Lucy’s Law was given after Lucy, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel died in 2016 after being poorly treated on a puppy farm. The rules will be applied in England, and are designed to help deter breeding farms and smugglers abusing the Pet Travel Scheme used to bring young animals into the UK so as to be sold.

The Introduction of Lucy’s Law

This new law was presented to the U.K. Parliament back in May 2019. The then Environment secretary Michael Gove said the new rules would give animals “the best possible start in life”.

Named after Lucy, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who died in 2016 after being poorly treated on a puppy farm, the RSPCA at the time said it was “absolutely thrilled” with the legislation – but stressed that it will require enforcement.

Lucy With Label
Lisa campaigned using pictures of Lucy on Instagram

But Paula Boyden, veterinary director at Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity, urged the government to go further.

She said: “We would like to see additional measures introduced to ensure the ban is as robust as possible.

Dogs Trust

“There is time before April 2020 for the government to consider regulation of re-homing organisations and sanctuaries, ensure full traceability of all puppies sold, and strengthening of the pet travel scheme.”

The History Behind Lucy’s Law

Lucy the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel’s was rescued from a welsh puppy farm and rehomed by Lisa Garner. Lucy’s hips had fused together, she had a curved spine, several bald patches and was suffering from epilepsy after years of mistreatment. Lucy was thought to be 5 years old.

Lisa With Lucy
Lisa Garner with Lucy on her Instagram

In an interview with the Mirror newspaper Lisa had said that ” ..with lots of patience, Lucy went on to enjoy a full, albeit far too short life, filled with happiness.” Lucy died just 3 years later. Avery short lifespan of approx. 8 yrs when you consider that these dogs when healthy usually live to about 12 to 14 years.

Spurred into action Lisa launched a campaign to prevent the poor treatment of dogs in puppy farms.

Puppy Farm
What the public DON’T see – A Puppy Farm

The ban has been backed by celebrities such as Ricky Gervais and vet Marc Abraham who also helped launch the campaign said on BBC 5 Live that “Her body was broken when she was rescued at five years old”.

The campaign was launched a year after her passing as a tribute to her and all the breeding dogs that are hidden from the public.

There was then some amazing work carried out by Pup Aid, Boycott Dogs4Us, C.A.R.I.A.D. many other organisations and their supporters.

An Amazing Result During The Brexit Period

I feel when you take into consideration that during this time the U.K.Parliament had almost been paralyzed due to the Brexit negotiations and had failed to move on so many other topics, that to get this law passed was only short of staggering so well done to all.

I have taken the liberty of using the clip below posted by and thank them for all the tireless campaigning involved.

From the site of


BREAKING NEWS! Government FINALLY to enact #LucysLaw

BREAKING NEWS! Government FINALLY to enact #LucysLaw to ban the sale of puppies in pet shops. They have set an implementation date of 6 April 2020, meaning Dogs4Us and other pet shops have until then to end their puppy sales.

Marc Abraham, Lucy’s Law campaigner and founder of Pup Aid said:

I’m absolutely thrilled that Lucy’s Law is now being laid in Parliament and will come into effect from April 2020. For years irresponsible breeders in the UK and abroad, so-called puppy farmers, have depended on commercial third party sellers – e.g. dealers and pet shops – to keep their breeding dogs and puppies in horrific conditions hidden from the public.

Lucy’s Law is named after one of the sweetest, bravest dogs I’ve ever known, and is a fitting tribute to all the victims of the cruel third party puppy trade, both past and present.

On behalf of my fellow grassroots campaigners I’d like to thank Mr Gove, Defra officials, and every single supporter, parliamentarian, celebrities, and ethical animal welfare organisation that has proudly helped make Lucy’s Law a reality.

Boycott Dogs4Us thanks Pup Aid, C.A.R.I.A.D and Lisa – Lucy The Rescue Cavalier for heading up this campaign and for all the groups that supported them including including Saynotopetshoppups, K-9 Angels, Little Rascals now Puppies at Home Dog Breeders Lincoln UK The Facts, Chancepixies Animal Rescue and of course all the supporters of Boycott Dogs4Us.

We will continue to campaign against Dogs4Us until they stop selling puppies in April 2020 or, hopefully, before that date.

For the Official Government word on this click this link to their website

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