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Publication - Research Publication

Consultation on potential controls or prohibition of electronic training aids

Published: 14 Sep 2016
Part of:
Research
ISBN:
9781786523198

Consultation analysis on electronic training aids for pets, dogs and cats.

83 page PDF

1.1MB

83 page PDF

1.1MB

Contents
Consultation on potential controls or prohibition of electronic training aids
Annex 5

83 page PDF

1.1MB

Annex 5

Questions on the consultation process

Question 21: Do you consider that the consultation explained the key issues sufficiently to properly consider your responses?

Respondent category Yes No Total answering question
N % N % N %
Animal behaviourist 36 88% 5 12% 41 100%
Animal care 5 100%
0% 5 100%
Animal trainer 101 86% 17 14% 118 100%
Animal welfare 32 84% 6 16% 38 100%
Local government 5 100%
0% 5 100%
Member of the public 54 83% 11 17% 65 100%
Pet owner 473 82% 103 18% 576 100%
Pet supplies 6 75% 2 25% 8 100%
Veterinary professional 20 91% 2 9% 22 100%
Owner of working dogs 15 79% 4 21% 19 100%
TOTAL 747 83% 150 17% 897 100%

The majority of respondents (83% of those answering the question) considered that the consultation explained the key issues sufficiently to allow them to properly consider their response.

Question 22: Do you consider that you had sufficient time to respond to the consultation?

Respondent category Yes No Total answering question
N % N % N %
Animal behaviourist 39 95% 2 5% 41 100%
Animal care 5 100%
0% 5 100%
Animal trainer 118 97% 4 3% 122 100%
Animal welfare 36 95% 2 5% 38 100%
Local government 5 100%
0% 5 100%
Member of the public 65 97% 2 3% 67 100%
Pet owner 555 96% 21 4% 576 100%
Pet supplies 7 88% 1 13% 8 100%
Veterinary professional 20 91% 2 9% 22 100%
Owner of working dogs 18 86% 3 14% 21 100%
TOTAL 868 96% 37 4% 905 100%

A very substantial majority (96% of those answering the question) thought they had enough time to respond to the consultation.

How would you rate your satisfaction with using Citizen Space to respond to consultations?

Respondent category Very satisfied Slightly satisfied Neither satisfied nor dissatisfied Slightly dissatisfied Very dissatisfied
N % N % N % N % N %
Animal behaviourist 23 55% 7 17% 9 21% 2 5% 1 2%
Animal care 3 50% 1 17% 2 33%
0%
0%
Animal trainer 42 38% 29 26% 32 29% 5 4% 4 4%
Animal welfare 15 39% 6 16% 12 32% 2 5% 3 8%
Local government 3 75%
0% 1 25% - 0%
0%
Member of the public 23 40% 15 26% 13 22% 5 9% 2 3%
Pet owner 183 34% 129 24% 186 34% 23 4% 21 4%
Pet supplies 2 33% 1 17% 2 33% 1 17% - 0%
Veterinary professional 13 59% 7 32% 1 5% - 0% 1 5%
Owner of working dogs 1 9% 5 45% 4 36% - 0% 1 9%
TOTAL 308 37% 200 24% 262 31% 38 5% 33 4%

A majority (61% of those answering the question) were either very or slightly satisfied with using Citizen Space (the Scottish Government's online consultation hub) to respond to the consultation.

Question 23: Do you have any other comments on the way this consultation has been conducted?

A total of 299 respondents made one or more comments about the consultation process.

In their further comments, some respondents welcomed the Scottish Government's decision to consult on this issue, although the importance of then taking the views expressed into account was also noted. Other positive comments included that:

  • Being able to respond online is easy and convenient. However, it was also noted that not everyone may have this option and that it is important to allow people to respond in other ways.
  • The questions were clear or unambiguous and there were plenty of opportunities to make further comments.
  • The Scottish Government's support team had provided a very good service.

Issues or concerns raised included:

  • There has been insufficient publicity concerning the consultation. There was a suggestion that others may have made a response had they known the Scottish Government was consulting on this issue.
  • This is not an issue on which it was necessary or helpful to consult the general public - any decisions should be based on the evidence concerning animal welfare and/or public safety rather than public opinion.
  • The consultation and/or the questions appear biased in favour of banning electronic training aids.
  • The consultation and/or the questions appear biased in favour of not banning electronic training aids.
  • The questions focus too much on the financial implications of any changes as opposed to animal welfare issues.
  • There are some misleading statements within the consultation paper. For example, the description of boundary fences states that they are 'sometimes preceded by a warning sound'. This suggests that pet containment systems do not usually have this feature when most, if not all, do.
  • The consultation should have clarified which electronic training devices might cause an animal distress or pain and which do not. There should have been options concerning electronic training aids other than collars, such as remote-controlled treat dispensers.
  • The question format and the guidance notes were not user friendly and this may have discouraged people (and in particular pet owners) from participating. In particular, the syntax and structure is difficult to follow.
  • The consultation asks too many questions, including many questions that are not of relevance to a pet owner and/or a member of the general public. An associated point was that respondents should be routed past questions which are not of relevance to them.
  • Online consultations and/or consultations structured around specific questions limit the respondents' opportunity to provide the information they consider important and in a structure they consider most appropriate or useful.
  • A number of the questions represent a "false positive" response. For example, asking if guidelines or statutory welfare act would be sufficient when additional options are then presented in the next question.
  • At Question 5, the option of 'A complete ban on all devices' should have been included rather than 'A complete ban on certain devices'.
  • At questions that asked about which types of devices should be banned or regulated, there should have been an option to indicate 'No ban or regulation'.

The following suggestions or areas of possible improvement were suggested:

  • Information on the consultation and/or paper copies should have been made available at places that those interested in this issue might frequent, such as veterinary surgeries.
  • There should be an option to submit an anonymous response, including being anonymous to the Scottish Government.
  • Covering information, including the invitation to participate letter sent, should state clearly the date on which the consultation closes.
  • The relevant legislation currently in place should be listed.
  • It would be helpful for a respondent to be able to save and download an electronic record of the submission they have made.
  • A 'mobile-friendly' way to submit a response would be welcome.
  • The comment boxes needed to be larger at some questions.

Contact

Email: Graeme Beale, socialresearch@gov.scot