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  1. Tim Scott, ITV News

A terrible trade - why our region has a terrible record for illegal puppy farming

The number of complaints about puppy farms is on the increase, especially in Greater Manchester and Cheshire.

Complaints include people buying dogs on the internet - that are then imported from Ireland or mainland Europe and can cost hundreds or thousands of pounds.

Often the dogs are distressed over being taken from their mothers too early and prone to serious illness.

Tim Scott reports:

Rob and Lucy were joined in the studio by Anna Baatz, the Education Community Officer for the Dogs Trust Manchester, and her dog Mo.

We asked her why she thought buying through puppy farms was on the increase.

87 puppies found in buckets

Puppies seized during RSPCA investigation into puppy trafficking Credit: GMP

87 puppies have been seized during a major RSPCA investigation into puppy trafficking and the alleged sale of sick dogs via internet ads.

Four dead puppies – including two left in a bucket were also found when officers carried out raids across Stockport and Greater Manchester.

A man and woman were arrested and bailed pending further enquiries.

All of the puppies including French Bulldogs, West Highland Terriers and Pomeranians are now in the RSPCA’s care pending the outcome of the investigation.

Puppies confiscated Credit: GMP

Sergeant Mike Cooper, said: “Two people have been arrested and are now on police bail pending further enquiries. We witnessed some shocking scenes yesterday and we will do everything we can to assist the RSPCA in any future prosecution or operation.

“People should only buy pets through the proper channels after considered thought and I would like to echo the RSPCA’s sentiments that they should not be given as gifts this Christmas.”