Parliamentary Debates

Since hearing about (and avidly following) Operation Ark and the evacuation from Afganistan of 68 cats and 94 dogs (and their vet staff and families) by Nowzad, I’ve become so more aware of the breadth of animal welfare lobbying and the inspirational people involved.

After a annoyingly loud week with fireworks every night, I was particularly interested to read about the forthcoming parliamentary debate about the private sale of fireworks. You can read about it here. For me, it’s the unexpected nature of the noise. One upside of Jake’s hearing diminishing in old age, is that he doesn’t stir. It’s the big booms that startle Truly particularly. At each boom she looks to me and then to Jake, and as neither of us react she settles back down again with one eye open.

I read on social media that Sainsbury’s had stopped selling them this year, and Asda only sold silent ones. Other chains apparently sold ‘low noise’ with animals in mind. Sadly, it’s quite easy to find pop up shops selling them, some continuing throughout the year. As you have probably gathered by now, I’m not a fan. I worry about all animals, and I wonder how they cope.


If reading about petitions has got you interested in getting involved in influencing, I thought I’d share how to raise a debate in parliament!

It’s actually relatively easy to register a petition on the parliamentary website. Once a petition raises 10,000 signatures, the Government will respond. Once a petition raises 100,000 signatures, it will be ‘considered’ for debate. The most effective campaigns I’ve seen in the last few months, are those who have a comprehensive social media and news story campaign behind them.

The top tip before you start a petition, is to search to see if someone else has already started one. Many don’t get that far because they run out of time.


If you haven’t heard the Nowzad story, you can hear Pen Farthing talk more on ‘One of the Family’ podcast about what happened to the dogs, cats and donkeys (4 Nov 21), or via ‘Off the Leash’ podcasts (#15). Both podcasts are available wherever you source yours.

Until next time



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