Joint Statement:Minister for Primary Industries, Fisheries and Rural and Regional Queensland, The Honourable Tim Mulherin
Minister for Local Government and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships, The Honourable Desley Boyle
Thursday, December 23, 2010
Puppy farms putting cash ahead of care are on borrowed time
The Bligh Government is planning a dog breeder identification system – a first for Queensland – in a bid to squeeze unscrupulous dog farmers out of the market.
Local Government Minister Desley Boyle said the dog breeder ID was being developed in partnership with industry to give consumers a pro-welfare choice when it comes to buying a puppy.
“It is a sad fact that puppy farms exist,” Ms Boyle said.
“There are unscrupulous puppy farmers out there who keep animals cooped up in cramped conditions where they are constantly pregnant or lactating just to keep up with buyer demand,” she said.
“These are ruthless operators who typically put cash ahead of care and buyers are none the wiser. Puppy farms are not registered breeders.”
Ms Boyle said the new breeder ID would change that by assigning each breeder property with its own number and breeders would be required to show their number at pet shops and in any advertisements.
The Bligh Government is developing the new system in consultation with key stakeholders including the RSPCA, Animal Welfare League, Dogs Queensland, the Local Government Association of Queensland, the Australian Veterinary Association and the University of Queensland.
Primary Industries, Fisheries and Rural and Regional Queensland Minister Tim Mulherin said at the heart of the matter was improving the welfare of animals.
“The consensus is we need to move on this issue and we are developing a new policy to help Queenslanders make an informed choice which would squeeze unethical puppy farmers out of the market,” he said.
“We are not out to get responsible dog breeders who do the right thing – far from it.
They will be showcased because they will have a dog breeder ID and be proud to promote it.
“Consumers will be looking for a breeder ID, and good breeders will be in demand.
“We will also be encouraging Queenslanders to buy only from registered breeders.”
Other elements of the Bligh Government’s plan include:
• Requiring breeder ID numbers to be displayed at points of sale or in advertising for sale or supply;
• Compulsory microchippping of breeding bitches;
• a requirement that the registration number/microchip number of the breeding bitch must be included as part of the microchip information on all animals bred from that dog;
• Development of Dog Breeder Standards by Biosecurity Queensland (DEEDI) in consultation with stakeholders;
• Breeders to continue to be subject to the Animal Management (Cats and Dogs) Act 2008 and the Animal Care and Protection Act 2001 (ACPA) as well as any new requirements under the proposed Dog Breeder Standards under ACPA.
Consultation with stakeholders is continuing and the new system is expected to be up and running before the end of 2011. It is expected the new Breeder Identification number will be brought in under an amendment to the Animal Management (Cats and Dogs) Act 2008.
Media Contacts: Minister Boyle’s Office – Liam Ferney 0428 199 933 0428 199 933
Minister Mulherin’s Office – 3239 3000