BILL Grant MP joined the fight against puppy smuggling over the festive holidays.

The Ayr Carrick and Cumnock MP highlight the plight of smuggled puppies imported to “fuel the Christmas puppy trade” where nearly 100 dogs were seized by Animal and Plant Health Agency (APHA) at the Borders, as dealers took advantage of the increased demand for puppies in the run up to Christmas.

He said: “I’m pleased to support the Dogs Trust charity in raising awareness of illegally imported puppies. They often have to suffer the most harrowing of journeys at the hands of unscrupulous dealers.

"It’s imperative that the Government takes immediate action by enforcing proper checks at the ports and on-the-spot fines to deter these breeders and dealers, as well as introducing revised legislation as a priority when the UK leaves the EU.

"We really hope this will help to effectively regulate pet travel.”

The Puppy Pilot scheme not only rescues puppies seized at the borders, but it funds their quarantine and it rehomes them responsibly and, so far, this scheme has saved more than 600 puppies.

Adrian Burder, CEO of Dogs Trust, added: “We can’t thank Bill Grant enough for his support.”