Get Gumtree Animal Free Campaign
5 CommentsWednesday, 6 March 2013 | D for Dog
Campaign to close Gumtree's shameful 'Pets for Sale' category
The Get Gumtree Animal Free (GGAF) campaign was launched in May 2011 in response to growing concern about online classified ads site Gumtree. Gumtree's 'Pets for Sale' category has become an all-too-convenient dumping ground for unwanted pets, which animal welfare charities report are being abandoned on an unprecedented scale.
This lucrative and unregulated market is easily exploited by criminals and those who abuse animals for profit, through puppy (and kitten) farming, illegal blood sports and dog fighting.
The Get Gumtree Animal Free campaign believe that effective monitoring of these ads would require specialist knowledge in the fields of law, zoology, veterinary medicine, breed recognition, etc. Gumtree openly admit that they don't have the resources to do this, but instead they "rely on the honesty of sellers" to follow their rules and "are grateful to members of the public for reporting ads" that break them. This hit-and-miss system is failing to protect tens of thousands of animals that are advertised on Gumtree.
The GGAF mission is simple: "We want Gumtree to remove their 'Pets for Sale' category, permanently. We believe that decisive action by such a high profile organisation would raise public awareness of the dangers of buying or rehoming animals online and put pressure on other online trading sites to follow, removing a major revenue stream of puppy and kitten farmers. In addition, we feel that new laws are urgently needed to protect animals sold online. The existing Animal Welfare Act (2006) does not take into account the vast number of live animals now being sold through unregulated websites, and does not give the police or RSPCA sufficient power to act in this area. We also encourage pet neutering and offer advice on free UK neutering schemes."
Does Gumtree make your blood boil? Here are some ways that you can help:
- Sign the petition here (THE PETITION IS NOW CLOSED)
- Write to your MP
- Boycott Gumtree until they remove their pets section
- Report any ads you see on Gumtree which break their rules
- Email a copy of each Gumtree ad you report to the Pets Advertising Advisory Group firstname.lastname@example.org
- Make a pledge never to buy, sell or rehome animals online
- Download and share the free graphics on the GGAF website and tell everyone about GGAF
- Write to companies that pay to advertise on Gumtree and ask them why they are financially supporting a website that puts animals at risk. There is a list of some of them on the GGAF website