THE WHIS­PERER

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

TAS­MA­NIA is poised to make 2014 a bet­ter year for com­pan­ion an­i­mals with new reg­u­la­tions on the breed­ing and sell­ing of pup­pies.

Due to the growth in large- scale com­mer­cial breed­ing op­er­a­tions, other states are do­ing the same.

Last week, Vic­to­ria an­nounced its re­vised manda­tory code of prac­tice for breed­ing and rear­ing busi­nesses, claim­ing it to be the strictest set of reg­u­la­tions in the world to pro­tect the wel­fare of do­mes­tic an­i­mals.

It’s come about as part of that state gov­ern­ment’s com­mit­ment to crack down on rogue puppy farms and in­volved feed­back through 25,350 sub­mis­sions.

The code in­cludes breed­ing lim­its to im­prove the like­li­hood of an­i­mals suc­cess­fully fi nd­ing homes, re­quire­ments on staffi ng lev­els to en­sure stan­dards of care and el­e­ments on ex­er­cise, en­rich­ment, so­cial­i­sa­tion and han­dling. Vic­to­rian breed­ers must reg­is­ter with their lo­cal coun­cil and abide by the code.

All ad­ver­tise­ments of dogs or cats for sale must in­clude the an­i­mal’s mi­crochip num­ber or the breeder’s an­i­mal busi­ness reg­is­tra­tion num­ber to en­sure trace­abil­ity.

The Vic­to­rian gov­ern­ment has pro­vided tools, tem­plates and a breeder train­ing course on their web­site www. depi. vic. gov. au/ pets.

Re­spon­si­ble breed­ers have noth­ing to lose and ev­ery­thing to gain from this Vic­to­rian model.

In the Aus­tralian Cap­i­tal Ter­ri­tory, a reg­is­tra­tion model ap­plies to all own­ers of un­de­sexed dogs, re­gard­less of whether own­ers in­tend to breed from them or not.

Un­der this sys­tem, the cost of breeder reg­is­tra­tion can act as a mo­ti­va­tor for own­ers to de­sex their an­i­mals and avoid ac­ci­den­tal lit­ters.

A breeder reg­is­tra­tion sys­tem helps limit un­wanted lit­ters and the num­ber of an­i­mals sur­ren­dered to an­i­mal shel­ters, which in turn helps re­duce the cost to the com­mu­nity and im­proves an­i­mal wel­fare out­comes.

Tas­ma­nia’s reg­u­la­tions are yet to be fi nalised but dogs will be bet­ter pro­tected through en­force­able stan­dards of care and man­age­ment en­acted dur­ing the com­ing year.

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