More action needed against illegal pet breeding

I read the report about abandoned dogs with disbelief ("Found: 18 dogs possibly abandoned by one owner"; March 26).

From the report, it looks like the suspected owner could be an illegal breeder.

The authorities need to step up enforcement and clamp down on illegal breeders and puppy mills that care only about making profits out of animals, neglecting the animals' well-being.

It takes a coordinated effort from the authorities, animal welfare groups and the public to bring a suspect to justice.

Sadly, many illegal breeders and puppy mills go undetected because the authorities reply on tip-offs to pursue the investigation further and blacklist illegal breeders.

The public should be educated on the proper channels to surrender their pets. Surrendering a pet to an animal shelter should be done only as a last resort.

As part of responsible pet ownership, pets should be sterilised and micro-chipped, and their welfare should be seen as a priority to pet owners.

Pet abandonment is a cowardly act of passing the responsibility of caring for these animals to the public and to animal welfare groups.

Often, these animals are not in good physical health, and animal welfare groups have to take over the owner's responsibility; this is unfair to them.

A portal should be created, either by the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals or the Agri-Food and Veterinary Authority, for tip-offs on cases related to animal welfare.

The public can fill up a form which allows them to post anonymously, so that more illegal breeders and puppy mills will be brought to justice.

More needs to be done to prevent pet abandonment.

Darren Chan Keng Leong