Government response

Myth busted: The Sun, Mirror and Metro claim there is a high risk of rabies entering the UK

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

The pet travel rules mean that the risk of rabies coming into the country is extremely low.

The Myth - The Sun, Mirror and Metro report that there is a high risk of rabies entering the UK because the pet travel rules were relaxed last year. The stories also claim that an increase in puppy smuggling will lead to an increased risk of rabies coming into the country.

The Truth - This is not true. The stories are based on inaccurate reporting by Channel 4’s Dispatches in a programme about illegal puppy smuggling. There is not a high risk of rabies entering the UK. The pet travel rules mean that the risk of rabies coming into the country is extremely low.