Bourne family hoping to adopt Romanian puppy launch petition to ask Government to lift import ban
A family which is waiting to welcome a Romanian dog into their home has launched a petition urging the Government to lift an import ban.
Lisa and Paul Sharp are in limbo waiting to find out when their dog Zac will be able to travel over from his foster home to Bourne after the Department for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has banned the import of rescue dogs.
Earlier this year, the couple along with children Lindsay, Maddie and Ethan had already adopted Zac’s sister Nova - both puppies were part of a litter found dumped on a wasteland in a plastic bag - from charity Paws.
DEFRA imposed a ban on importing ‘dogs, cats and ferrets from Ukraine, Belarus, Poland or Romania’ for rehoming and sale over rabies fears and limited quarantine spaces.
Mrs Sharp has been told that the ban is likely to be in place until July 9 and has now launched a petition to ask DEFRA to review and reassess this ban.
She said: “We were due to find out on May 14 about what the next steps were going to be and now DEFRA is saying it will be another two months.
“Paws are a legitimate charity that have worked hard for so many years and have checks in place. They are being punished by this blanket ban and resources are starting to run down.
“I want to raise awareness of the problems faced by this legitimate charity.”
Zac and Nova were part of a litter found dumped on a wasteland in a plastic bag without their mum last autumn. Thankfully the charity had been able to track down her down and reunite them.
Nova’s stunning face made her stand out to the family, who picked her up from Birmingham in March and she has now become an important part of the family.
She said: “She has brought such unconditional love to us all. She has fitted in with the family like a dream. We now fight over where she is going to sleep.”
The family later made the decision to also adopt Zac, who needs to go to a home with another dog.
But while they waited for the paperwork to be completed, the ban came into place.
Mrs Sharp said: “The charity is very clear that the animals have all of there vaccinations, passport and paperwork. They go through the DEFRA checks before they come to the UK.
“We were hoping the two puppies will grow up together.”
DEFRA says the measure has been imposed to protect human and animal health and help officials to continue prioritising refugees fleeing Ukraine with their pets.
A DEFRA spokesperson said: “Animals without the correct vaccinations and confirmatory tests pose a real disease threat to both our own beloved animals and to people whilst also impacting the rabies-free status we have held for many years.
“Given the serious health risks to humans and animals and following a number of serious instances of non-compliance, we have temporarily suspended commercial imports from four specific countries.
“This is an emergency measure to keep people’s pets safe and help us to continue prioritising refugees fleeing Ukraine with their pets.”
To support Mrs Shar’s petition go to: https://chng.it/gS42ss6G62