Reggie's Story

This is the true story of Reggie whom I first came across as a beautiful twelve week old puppy being advertised on a reputable dog-selling website in December 2020. I rang the seller and, having received what I considered as satisfactory responses to my various questions, arranged to visit Reggie and two other dogs at the same location. After spending time with them I duly bought Reggie but within three hours of arriving back home he fell ill with diarrhoea. By the following morning he had deteriorated and was now suffering from both diarrhoea and vomiting which became progressively worse until my wife and I had no option but to rush him to our local veterinary surgery. Reggie spent the next three days either at the surgery or at our home in a wretched condition whilst being given various treatments but sadly he never recovered. At one stage we were told that he had only a 20% chance of surviving and then at the next that his only options were either a major blood transfusion or putting him to sleep and the vet was recommending the latter. I cannot disguise that our decision to follow this advice was one of the most difficult and traumatic that we have ever taken and still affects us to this day. Reggie died just four days after we bought him, officially due to parvovirus. The end of his very short life was painful and horrific. It transpired that he was bred at a puppy farm in Ireland in appalling conditions and without proper and necessary care from either the breeder or the seller. One of his siblings, as mentioned above, was also seriously ill but thankfully made a full recovery. We are unaware of what happened to the third one. Unfortunately, Reggie’s tale – still being investigated by various agencies - is but one of many similar. There is growing concern that thousands of unfortunate puppies are being imported illegally into the United Kingdom without proper documentation or care. We have since learned that Reggie’s paperwork was fake. Rightly or wrongly my wife and I feel partly responsible for Reggie’s death. Although we have had plenty of support and heartfelt letters from people we hadn’t even met, we have also received some criticism for not having done more. Like many others we were oblivious at the time to puppy farming and were perhaps too trusting with the reasons we were given for not seeing the puppies’ mother due to Covid-19 restrictions. However, we now want to advance the cause of animal rights and educate and inform the British public about the urgent need to address the horrendous aspects of the illegal puppy trade - including puppy farms - so that thousands of dogs like Reggie can be spared a short, hellish life, having been used simply for nothing more than quick financial gain. This is personal in the sense that we do not want his death to be in vain. We fell in love with him immediately and he settled in happily with our family in the short time we had with him. If he’d had a better start in life with the correct care that you would normally take for granted with a breeder we believe he would have had a long, wonderful life ahead of him. Our recently-launched Justice For Reggie campaign and website is already being contacted by hundreds of concerned animal-lovers who are eager both to share details of similar tragedies to Reggie’s and join together as a collective voice to seek urgent changes to the laws on the illegal trade in puppies. We now also work with a growing number of local MPs and councils from across the United Kingdom and Ireland and are in talks with selling websites and police forces to promote the cause of change and achieve our goals.