Animal welfare rule changes
New animal welfare rules become compulsory in October 2018.
The regulations set out a number of changes supported by the New Zealand Veterinary Association including tail docking, dew claw removal, cattle disbudding, dehorning and docking.
Come October 2018 all dogs can keep their tails. The new regulation prohibits tail docking unless by a veterinarian to treat a significant injury or disease.
Currently, dew claws in newborn puppies can be removed by anyone for any purpose.
Ruawai vet Janine Hames believes front dew claws should only be removed because of injury, disease or for safety purposes.
‘‘Sometimes the dew claws of working dogs can get floppy causing them to get caught and torn,’’ she says.
It will also become an offence to dock cattle, except in an emergency, to prevent excessive bleeding or further injury.
Cattle disbudding and dehorning without pain relief will be outlawed by October 2019.
Tail docking dogs will be illegal from October next year.