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Pets - Private breeding

Animals affected

Dogs, Cats, Ferrets






The Spanish Law of animal protection makes it illegal to “breed and trade in animals without the corresponding licences and permits”, in other words private sale. Furthermore, in many regions –for example in Catalonia– the promotion of any type of transaction with animals between private parties not registered as an animal centre, whether or not there is money involved, is illegal. However, due to a lack of means to ensure the law is upheld, the breeding of animals has skyrocketed, causing an increase in the number of strays and a worsening of the living conditions of these animals, as well as strengthening the underground economy.

We are talking about a market which promotes non-respectful coexistence, overpopulation and abandonment, as well as committing legal infringements and tax fraud.

In 2015 the government raised the possibility of regulating the private pet sales’ sector and tried to stop illegal breeding, but in the end the document became simple guidelines for good practice.

According to a study carried out by the European Union it is calculated that there are 32,000 breeders operating in the EU, of which 87% are amateurs and 13% are professionals. 42% of trade in dogs and 22% of trade in cats is illegal.

We know that it is a sentimental topic. Even in kids’ movies it is not uncommon to see how the family dog gives birth to a litter of adorable puppies. While we understand the joy that this can bring, we firmly believe we need to move beyond that. Just as the other areas of the sale of live animals, private breeding can have disastrous consequences.


Our action

At the state level

  • We carry out sterilisation and identification campaigns at reduced prices for animals of the general public.
  • We run awareness campaigns.

In Catalonia

  • We file complaints against illegal private breeders.
  • We offer owners of animals information about current legislation.
  • We carry out sterilisation and tagging campaigns at reduced prices for private pet owners.
  • We have campaigns to raise awareness.

What can you do?

  • Sterilise your pet. Find out about the numerous advantages of making this responsible decision.
  • Adopt a pet from aa animal protector association sanctuary.

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