Sunshine Coast Daily; Kate Clifford; 8th Nov 2012
THE State Government has thrown out legislation that would have stopped unlawful puppy farms and cruel backyard breeding programs.
The proposed new law, which received bipartisan support in 2011, was tabled with the previous government six weeks before this year’s election.
Mandatory registration of animal breeders and criminalising those who did not comply with the law were keys to the legislation.
RSPCA Queensland spokesman Michael Beatty said illegal breeding programs and cruelty against animals would have been slashed if the legislation was approved.
“Animal welfare groups across Queensland had been pushing for years to see a registration for breeders,” Mr Beatty said.
“The registration would mean that breeders would have their contact information and address on record.
“It would make it illegal for people to breed and sell animals if they did not register as a breeder.”
A Biosecurity Queensland spokesperson said the Government would rely on councils to ensure the management of breeders.
“All Queensland councils are required to register dogs under the Animal Management Act, however this does not differentiate between breeding and non-breeding dogs,” the spokesman said.
More than 40 animals were being handed to shelters across the Sunshine Coast each week.
4 Paws Animal Refuge president Julie Penlington said the high number of animals in need of help was leaving shelters in crisis.
“It is just horrible what is happening here,” Ms Penlington said.
“There is just a prolific amount of puppy mills and backyard breeding going on, with dogs being sold to anyone who will pay the money.
“There are no checks for suitable owners. There are absolutely no questions asked.
“Then a year or so down the track, these dogs turn up on our door step because the people who brought them don’t want them anymore.”
Sunshine Coast rangers stumbled across two dogs stranded in Beerwah State Forest last week.
One of the poodles was dead, while the other was severely injured and frightened.
Mrs Penlington said the poodles might have been abandoned in the forest for weeks.
“This is just another example of how cruel people are,” she said.
The high influx of unwanted animals has meant more than 40 additional 4 Paws foster carers have had to be sourced.