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Cambridgeshire animal shelter bans dog 'sightseers'

King Charles Spaniel at Wood Green. Photo:

You might think an animal re-homing charity would want as many visitors as possible - but the Wood Green centre in Cambridgeshire plans to restrict the number of people allowed into its dog kennels.

Staff at the centre in Godmanchester say too many visitors can over-excite the dogs and encourages bad habits - and from now on only people genuinely wanting to adopt a dog will be let in. So from Monday the number allowed into the kennels will be restricted.

Chris Bennett from Wood Green.

"We find a lot of the dogs especially on a busy day, weekends and the school holidays progressively throughout the day will start to hide around the back of the kennels. They will be barking more, pacing backwards and forwards and we also see they learn by behaviours too as well. So they may start to learn a new behaviour such as barking at people to try and get them to move on and move away and that will pass on to their new home as well, so they are developing issues we don't really want them to have."

– Chris Bennett, Wood Green
Bull Terrier at Wood Green.

The centre has more than 30 dogs that need a new home. Wood Green gets about 250,000 visitors each year and when staff carried out a survey they discovered only 15% of them actually come to the centre with the intention of rehoming a dog.

Visitors can still come to see the other animals at the centre, but they will have to speak to staff before seeing the dogs.

In future these dogs who have been left needing a new owner, will only see visitors who genuinely want to offer them a home.

If you want to find out more about Wood Green click here.