THE WHIS­PERER

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - PETS - Anne Box­hall Email abox­hall@ big­pond. com

ACROSS the coun­try, peo­ple want to see im­prove­ments in stan­dards of breed­ing, sell­ing and keep­ing of com­pan­ion an­i­mals.

Pri­or­i­ties range from an­i­mal wel­fare to pub­lic safety and com­mu­nity har­mony.

When it comes to the wel­fare of cats and dogs, those who breed, sell and keep com­pan­ion an­i­mals have ul­ti­mate re­spon­si­bil­ity.

Re­cently, the New South Wales Govern­ment re­leased two re­ports along with a se­ries of rec­om­men­da­tions on breed­ing and sell­ing an­i­mals, breeder li­cens­ing and the wel­fare and man­age­ment of an­i­mals.

The rec­om­men­da­tions have been put for­ward by a taskforce specifi cally set up to achieve gains for com­mu­ni­ties and com­pan­ion an­i­mals.

The rec­om­men­da­tions have im­pli­ca­tions for cats and dogs, their own­ers, the pet in­dus­try and the broader com­mu­nity.

Suc­cess­ful ini­tia­tives from one state are likely to be­come mod­els for other states to fol­low.

Right now, the New South Wales Govern­ment is seek­ing feed­back on the rec­om­men­da­tions. If you have an in­ter­est in the wel­fare of dogs and cats and get­ting the right bal­ance be­tween laws and ed­u­ca­tion, you can re­spond through an on­line feed­back form ac­ces­si­ble at www. dlg. nsw. gov. au

The form in­cludes a to­tal of 38 rec­om­men­da­tions and al­lows you to rate them in terms of pri­or­ity.

Key is­sues in­clude the li­cens­ing of breeders and im­proved breed­ing prac­tises, the man­age­ment of cats and dogs gen­er­ally and danger­ous dogs specifi cally and com­mu­nity ed­u­ca­tion for so­cially re­spon­si­ble pet own­er­ship.

Other rec­om­men­da­tions made in­clude pub­lic ac­cess to an on­line com­pan­ion an­i­mals reg­is­ter, a new dis­counted regis­tra­tion cat­e­gory for de­sexed an­i­mals pur­chased from a pound or shel­ter ( to en­cour­age the pur­chase of de­sexed cats and dogs) and a fund­ing pro­gram to de­liver tar­geted mi­crochip­ping, regis­tra­tion and de­sex­ing pro­grams.

Com­bined, th­ese rec­om­men­da­tions have real po­ten­tial to re­duce the num­ber of un­wanted and lost an­i­mals and im­prove life for pets and peo­ple.

Feed­back must be sub­mit­ted be­fore May 10.

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