23 OCT 2010
By SHÂN ROSS | Scotsman
SCOTLAND'S sled-dog racers have been forced to pull out of world championships because of a "barking mad" European Union regulation which limits the number of huskies allowed to travel to events, an MEP has claimed.
Enthusiasts warn they have already been forced to abandon plans to compete abroad and said the rules threaten the growth of the sport in Scotland.
The regulation, which came into force earlier this year, limits to five the number of dogs, cats or ferrets that can be moved at any one time.
The restriction has forced the Sled Dog Association of Scotland (SDAS) to cancel plans to travel to Norway for the sport's world championship next year.
The organisation is also concerned it will have to abandon plans to bring the European off-snow championships in 2014 and world championships in 2015 to Scotland.
Last night Struan Stevenson, Scottish Conservative MEP, said the tally of five animals appeared to have been reached in an "arbitrary" manner and did not take into account the needs of those transporting animals for genuine sporting purposes.
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