What are the benefits of the Act?
The key benefits of the Act include:
- a duty of care for all protected animals
- it allows action to be taken to prevent suffering as opposed to waiting until suffering has occurred
- it provides robust powers to deal with animal fighting, including dog fights
- it provides tough fines and penalties for serious animal welfare offences
The five needs of an animal
The 2011 Act enshrines the five needs of an animal in law:
- the need for a suitable environment;
- the need for a suitable diet;
- the need to be able to exhibit normal behaviour patterns;
- any need to be housed with, or apart from, other animals; and
- the need to be protected from pain, suffering, injury and disease.
A person is responsible for ensuring the needs of an animal are met if they own it or have responsibility for its day to day care.