Govt bans importing dogs for commercial purposes
The Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) notified that importing dogs for breeding or any such commercial activities in India has been banned. However, DGFT stated that importing dogs for the police department, defence forces, and R&D organizations was allowed. Also, people can get pet dogs into India if they have a valid pet book and other necessary documents under the importer's name.
Importing dogs, an easy job
The increase in popularity of imported dogs in India made importing them very easy said KK Trivedi, Secretary-Oudh Kennel Club and a committee member of Kennel Club of India. People were ready to spend any amount of money on foreign breeds as they had become a status symbol. Breeders said that increase in demand for rare foreign breeds turned 'breeding' into a flourishing business.
Need to regulate pet shops and breeding practices
In 2015, the Law Commission had issued a report on the 'Need to Regulate Pet Shops and Dog Breeding and Aquarium Fish Breeding' and recommended that the Centre must regulate trade in pet shops and animal breeding practices.
Similar ban on dolphin shows, export of shark fins
In 2013, Ministry of Environment and Forests had issued a ban on dolphin shows, dolphinariums, or keeping dolphins captive in any manner. In 2015, Directorate General of Foreign Trade had imposed a ban on exporting shark fins.
Animal activists commend the ban
Several NGOs including Humane Society International-India and People for Animals commended DGFT for the historic ban which would prevent thousands of dogs from suffering. Many animal NGOs claimed that their shelters are flooded with dogs of the foreign breed as their owners have no knowledge of the breed's needs. Also, pedigreed dogs were ending up on streets because of the proliferation of foreign breeds.
Some foreign breeds not suitable for Indian climate
According to Humane Society International (India), there are several breeds in India, which cannot adjust to the tropical climate. HSI noted that breeds like Siberian Huskies, St Bernards, Alaskan Malamutes, etc. are imported by commercial breeders in India.
Pedigreed dogs might become dearer
Breeders say that the import ban might trigger an increase in the prices of top pedigrees in India like Rottweiler, German Shepherd, Labrador, Doberman, and Pug. The prices of each pup of these pedigrees might increase by Rs.3,000-5,000. CV Sudarshan, Secretary-Kennel Club of India, said that seeing the import of pedigrees as a 'commercial activity' was unfair as some breeders do it for passion.
Other animal-related import bans in India
The Government of India had banned the import of several products of animal origin such as meat/body parts of wild animals, edible products of animal origin, fish tails/waste in any form. Feathers/waste/body parts of rare wild birds, ivory, musk, tiger-cat skins and articles/apparel/accessories of wild animal origin cannot be imported into India. India had banned the import of animal-tested products including cosmetics in 2014.