Illegal puppy farm breeders will find it harder to sell to Victorian pet shops, with tighter regulations and tough new record keeping requirements for pet shops now in effect.
From today, pet shop owners must keep detailed records on every individual dog and cat sold or offered for sale, including where they were sourced from.
This follows media reports earlier this week of the tragic death of a puppy in Perth after it was allegedly transported 4,000 km from an illegal puppy farm in New South Wales before being sold from a Perth pet shop. The pet shop claimed the puppy was sourced from a ‘reputable’ breeder.
These tough new regulations will make it easier for authorised officers from the RSPCA, local Councils and the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources to determine the source of animals in pet shops and to identify illegal breeders.
They will also give consumers more confidence that the animals purchased from pet shops have been sourced from ethical breeders.
These requirements were introduced into the Parliament last year in response to community concern about pet shops selling animals bred in illegal, cruelly operated puppy farms, and formally took effect from 1 July, 2015.
Under the Labor Government, restrictions will be increased even further, with pet shops limited to only selling dogs or cats supplied by registered animal shelters or pounds.
We’re also progressing other aspects of our comprehensive plan to crack down on cruel and illegal puppy farms, with work already underway to introduce mandatory pre-mating vet checks and to limit breeding dogs to five litters, as well as amending legislation to restrict the number of breeding dogs in business to 10 by 2020.
The RSPCA has also received an additional $5 million in funding to establish a special investigations unit to uncover and prosecute illegal puppy farms.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Agriculture, Jaala Pulford
“Consumers want to know where their new pets have come from and be confident that they’re not the product of cruel and illegal puppy farms – that’s why we’ve tightened regulations on pet shops and will enforce even tighter restrictions to crack down on illegal puppy farms.”
“Our plan will smash the puppy farm business model, leaving rogue operators with nowhere to hide.”
Quotes attributable to RSPCA Victoria CEO, Dr Liz Walker
“I am pleased that the Victorian Government is continuing the pressure and taking steps to make cruel and abhorrent puppy and kitten factories a thing of the past in Victoria.”
“This support from the Victorian Government will help RSPCA authorised officers target unlawful breeding operations as well as their sales channels as we work together with local councils to send a strong message to rogue breeders that there is no place for their disgraceful practices here in Victoria.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020