Labor to crack down on puppy farms

Victorian Labor will crack down on puppy farms and introduce tough new measures to support animal welfare.

Labor will provide the RSPCA with additional resources to tackle puppy farms and toughen up their inspectorate capacity. Labor will also work with the RSPCA and local councils to address this issue.

Labor will amend the code of practice for dog breeding businesses to ensure female dogs cannot have any more than 5 litters and reinstate mandatory breeding vet checks.

Under Labor pet shops will only be able to sell puppies that are supplied from a registered breeder, animal shelter or Code compliant facility.

The Napthine Government had the opportunity to smash the puppy farm business model but broke their promise.

Quotes attributable to Mr Andrews:

“Denis Napthine betrayed Victorians when he walked away from his promise to crack down on puppy farms.”

“Dogs shouldn’t be breeding machines, yet veterinarian Denis Napthine seems to think otherwise.”

“Only Labor will protect dogs from a lifetime of misery in puppy farms.”

Key Facts

• In 2010 the Liberals and Nationals promised to deal with rogue puppy farms, with new codes regulating the treatment of breeding animals.
• The code released on the 17 December 2013, was described by Agricultural Minister Peter Walsh as “setting a new global benchmark”. This contained clauses outlining that breeding dogs were subject to only five litters in their lifetime and that there should be mandatory veterinary checks before and after each litter.
• In April 2014, it was revealed that the code would be revised to remove clauses aimed at protecting breeding dogs and to remove limits on litters.
• Approximately 200,000 cats and dogs are euthanised in Australia every year. There is an oversupply of animals for sale and many are abandoned, not adopted and ultimately destroyed.
• Labor will give the RSPCA an additional $5 million over four years which includes money to support a flying squad of inspectors to conduct a much need compliance audit to tackle puppy farms in partnership with local councils.
• Labor will relocate the responsibility of pet welfare from the Agriculture portfolio to another government department to ensure that welfare issues are prioritised.

Published on May 19, 2014