Dog rental companies

The welfare of dogs offered for short term rental is a great concern for the Kennel Club, as its mission statement is 'to promote in every way the general improvement of dogs'.

In 2008 it was brought to the Kennel Club's attention that companies have been established to rent out dogs in return for profit. The Kennel Club considers such businesses to be unethical and has concerns about: where the dogs are being sourced from; what happens to a dog when it is too old to be rented out and behavioural issues that the dog may develop as a result of being treated differently by various customers.

Pet rental companies claim the main benefit of their business is that they give potential owners the opportunity to see if they are ready for pet ownership.  However, renting an animal for an hour cannot be compared with the 24/7 reality of pet ownership and the Kennel Club does not believe that such businesses will stop people from abandoning their animals when they find out more about owning them. 

The Kennel Club believes there are already sufficient opportunities in the UK for people without the time for permanent dog ownership to take part in dog related activities, for instance by volunteering to walk dogs from a local rescue centre, or helping charities such as Hearing Dogs for Deaf People by socialising dogs at weekends whilst they are in training. These dogs need support and the charities involved with their care allow members of the public to spend time with dogs free of charge.

The Kennel Club believes that renting dogs should be made an offence under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. Currently under that Act, only two regulations have been brought forward, and we believe the next set of regulations should legislate on pet vending, and under such regulations, the issue of pet rentals should also be dealt with.

Last updated - November 2013

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