Sunday, 24 April 2011

The Pet Tax Plan

I never trust a squirrel but one approached me recently and squeaked me some gossip he'd heard about the secret tax plans of the Coalition. It seems one of David Cameron's advisers has been bouncing ideas around to cut the deficit and the one getting discussed the most is the "Pet Tax" plan.

Every owner of a pet in the UK would have to pay an annual charge for the right to own the pet, payable by the end of each tax year. They would then be issued with a licence. This document would be pet specific and would be required when presenting the animal at a vet, when buying pet food or toys and when stopped by a community warden. A provisional licence could also be purchased for those who intended to purchase a pet but hadn't found the right one yet.

The Tory boffins hope it will cut down on puppy farms and make people think twice before getting a pet. It would also reduce the need for hosepipe bans in the South as less water bowls will need to be filled. But mainly it would bring in wads of cash as the British love their pets.

I told my squirrel acquaintance I thought it was nuts. He replied, "How else do you think I sniffed it out?"

I continued. Homeless people would end up in prison on tax evasion charges simply for begging with an unlicensed dog. Hmmn, not the best example to lead with as I suppose this would get the homeless off the street and allow them to pick up new skills while inside. But that would also result in a lot more animals getting abandoned. And not just dogs. We'd start to see adverts for charities like 'The Goldfish Trust'.

"We never flush a healthy goldfish down the toilet but we need you're money so Goldie can live a life free from the threat of finding himself in the wrong bowl." 

The tax would just encourage people to look outside the legislation for their pet needs. Suddenly Barshaw would be covered in sheep walkers taking Dolly for a graze, all of whom would claim that they were in fact farmers on their way to market. I'd have to get a job to qualify for the working animal exemption clause. And I don't think blogger counts as work.

I hope these plans are simply a smokescreen to hide some other insidious scheme to get cheap oil from unstable Middle East countries.

I'm oblivious to the Silence in the background

I was looking at the Dogs Trust website the other day to see if any of my pals had ended up there when I noticed they wanted you to buy car fridges through them to help a dog. I couldn't think why a car fridge would help a dog: perhaps keep their water cool; allow the transport of cold meat in a warm car to permit a picnic at the sea side. Sounded good. I clicked on the link to investigate and realised it had been a font issue. It didn't say 'car fridge'. It said 'cartridge'. They wanted you to buy printer ink cartridges through them. Boring.

But I still like the idea of a car fridge. Which way is it to the patent office?