Media Release

Greens Will Push Companion Animal Protection in New Parliament

12/03/2014 11:00 am

The Greens today committed to introducing laws into the State Parliament that would better ensure that no healthy or redeemable animals are needlessly put to death in our State's pet shelters.

“This push follows similar legislation in jurisdictions of the United States where the Companion Animal Protection Act (CAPA) was created because animal shelters were not voluntarily implementing life-saving programs for animals entering their care,” said Greens Leader Mark Parnell MLC.

“CAPA would mandate the relationship between shelters and rescue organisations, making it illegal for a shelter to euthanise an animal if a rescue is willing to rehome that animal.”

Mia McKenzie from the No Kill Advocacy group the PAW Project says:

"These laws are about creating pet shelters for the 21st century and embracing the fine work of the many rescues   in SA. Smarter sheltering will also be popular with the community.

"CAPA's highlights include opening up and mandating relationships between shelters and rescue organisations.

"It would also require all of the state's shelters to make public information about the number of animals put down and adopted.”

Mark Parnell said: “The RSPCA SA works with rescue groups in rehoming our animals and their rehoming rates have actually improved dramatically in recent years, showing that it can be done. We commend them for that. Currently, the RSPCA publishes these figures but some other shelters do not.The Greens believe transparency would drive positive change and support saving animal's lives.”

 

According to the RSPCA’s website, which reports animal outcomes, of the animals they took in the financial year to date 2013/14, 21% were euthanised for various reasons. These figures are down from 37% in 2011/12 and 31% in 2012/13. The Greens commend the RSPCA for at least making those figures publicly available but believe CAPA would reduce these numbers still further. Many shelters do not reveal their statistics.

Australians buy over 600,000 pets annually, the capacity to absorb this in adoption is clear.

The RSPCA SA data is also published quarterly here.

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