Some dog breeders have raised concerns about the new legislation on mandatory sterilisation and dog breeding, which will help authorities to trace dogs and target dodgy dog breeders. We want to set some facts straight.
Consistency and transparency
Consistency and transparency of all dog breeders is a priority for State Government. There will be no exemptions to obtain an 'approval to breed'.
Approval to breed
Obtaining an 'approval to breed' will be an easy process. It will be a one-off approval which won’t require renewal unless a person moves to another local government district.
Local governments can refuse dog breeder applications only on the following grounds:
- Under age: the applicant is under 18 years of age.
- Criminal record: the applicant has committed an offence under the Dog Act 1976, Cat Act 2011 or Animal Welfare Act 2002.
- No suitable breeding facilities available: the applicant doesn’t have sufficient facilities or access to sufficient facilities to breed dogs according to the Animal Welfare Act 2002 or any other written law. This refers to general dog
housing standards that require a person to provide a dog with shelter and a clean and safe environment.
- Not a fit or proper person to breed dogs.
Breeding in family homes
Dogs can still be bred in family homes, with a dog breeder approval. Dog breeders must comply with general dog housing requirements that will be introduced under the Animal Welfare Act.
The State Government has listened and considered feedback from stakeholders, including Dogs West members, carefully during the development of new legislation. Nearly 5000 submissions were received during consultations on the stop puppy
farming proposals, a significant number of these were received by Dogs West members.
- All dog breeders, Dogs West members and non-members will be required to meet the new standards of dog breeding to ensure the health and welfare of dogs in Western Australia.
- Dog breeders will be required to comply with minimum standards for all dog types including pedigree or cross breeds.
- Only government authorities can cancel a person’s dog breeder approval and prevent them from breeding dogs. Dogs West can cancel registrations of members, but they don’t have the power to prevent a person from continuing to breed dogs.
Only government can do this to ensure Stop Puppy Farming measures are effective.
Unsterilised dogs can still be kept, only an approval is required by local government. Once an approval is obtained, it continues to be in place indefinitely, allowing owners to keep all current and future dogs unsterilised.