THE public has been urged to only purchase puppies from registered breeders.
The advice from Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council comes after an illegal breeder was prosecuted at Coleraine Magistrates Court.
The Council brought the case against Mr Mervyn Dowey of Drumlee Road, Ballymoney, after he was found to have produced more than three litters of puppies in any 12 month period.
Any dog breeder producing or selling three or more litters of pups in any 12 month period must register with the local Council and comply with the terms of a dog breeder’s licence.
This ensures that pups are raised in a safe environment where they are socialised properly and are vaccinated before going on to their new home.
The defendant pleaded guilty and was fined £150 and ordered to pay court costs of £124.
Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council has said that members of the public who want to buy a puppy should only go to a registered breeder who are subject to regular inspections.
This ensures that their premises are suitable and up to standard, and that all pups are kept in the best possible conditions for their overall health and wellbeing.