Penalties for ACT pet sellers who break new rules

Source: News

The new code will regulate the sale of puppies and kittens to ensure animal welfare standards.

People selling pets in Canberra are now subject to tougher restrictions and penalties.

The new Animals Sales Code came into force today covering everything from pet stores to backyard dog breeders selling on the internet.

The code also includes livestock, backyard poultry and live animals sold in restaurants and markets such as fish.

Territory and Municipal Services Minister Shane Rattenbury says the new regulations are an important step forward for animal welfare.

“It will achieve this by requiring sellers to provide hygienic accommodation,” he said.

“To provide adequate exercise to the animals and to provide written information about the care of the animal that is being sold.

“And it will also restrict animal sales to buyers who are under the age of 16.”

The code also gives greater enforcement powers to the RSPCA, TAMS officers and police if they see a breach.

“By making it enforceable this means that we do have officers who can go out and make sure that standards are being adhered to which underlines the importance of animal welfare,” Mr Rattenbury said.

“And making sure that people do get the information they need before becoming a pet owner.”

It can be enforced with a written warning, on-the-spot fines or court imposed penalties of up to $11,000 for an individual.

Canberra vet Michael Archinall welcomes the new code.

“It is all about the animal welfare and it’s all about looking after the animals and making sure they’re cared for in the best way possible,” he said.

“So if we need to have a code or an act that’s enforceable, so be it.

“But it’s been operating well as a volunteer code of conduct for a while.”

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