Last chance for you to speak up for cats and dogs
In May 2011, the NSW Government established the Companion Animals Taskforce to inquire into euthanasia rates of cats and dogs and other issues such as puppy farms, and to advise on strategies to improve companion animal welfare. A draft report was released for public comment in May 2012 and more than 1,400 submissions were received. In addition, the Taskforce was asked to consider the management of dangerous dogs. The Taskforce met with a number of experts, considered a wide range of research on the topic and made a report to Government.
Time for action
Both reports have now been released by the NSW Government for a final round of public consultation.
Submissions close 10 May and we urge everyone who cares about animal welfare to make their voice heard.
This is the last chance to have your say.
The Government has been open to the issue and has provided a thorough process for the development of better companion animal policies but now it is up to you. Unless there is a strong public demand for it, we’re not likely to see much change.
PLEASE make a submission yourself, and encourage friends, family and colleagues to do the same. The cats and dogs need your help.
You can read the reports and complete the online submission form at www.dlg.nsw.gov.au (under Recent Publications 25/03/2013). It will only take about 15 minutes to complete the submission.
Cat Protection is a member of the Taskforce and supports the recommendations in the feedback form. We ask you to take the opportunity on the ‘additional comments’ section of the form to support policy changes that will improve the availability of pet-friendly accommodation, both strata and rental.
Please especially support the proposal to reduce the age of registration for cats to four months and make it a high priority. The reason for this is to try to prevent those ‘accidental’ first litters of kittens that are born when people wait until their cat is six months old prior to desexing. Six months is too late and early-age desexing has been proven to be perfectly safe. The discount on registration provides a significant incentive for desexing.
(Dogs are a little different as there can sometimes be issues with desexing female dogs before six months, and because the law requires dogs to be confined, the opportunities for unplanned litters are limited. It is proposed the age for dog registration remain at six months.)
Annual registration is a recommendation of the Taskforce but is unlikely to receive government support unless it has very strong public support.
We recommend annual registration for a number of reasons:
• Ensures the Companion Animal Register is up to date so pet owners can be contacted when their pet is lost
• Ensures the integrity of the data on the Register – good policy and decision making needs good data
• Will assist with public and animal health management in the event of a disease outbreak (eg Hendra virus)
• Tracks dogs and cats throughout their lifecycle
• Assists with monitoring and management of dangerous dogs
• Maintains an incentive for desexing (if someone lifetime registers their undesexed cat at the full rate, there is no financial incentive for them to desex the cat at a later date).
Annual fees would not have to be high and there is no suggestion that the current lifetime rate be applied yearly. Significant discounts should still apply for pensioners and owners of desexed animals.
Cat Protection will be making a submission as Cat Protection but we need YOU to make submissions as individuals.
If you are on the electoral roll in NSW then make sure you take this opportunity to participate in democracy.
Vote 1 for better animal welfare! Make your submission today and speak up for our furry friends – they’re depending on you www.dlg.nsw.gov.au