The Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986 (the Act) protects the welfare of all animals in Victoria. On 12 December 2007 amendments were introduced into the Act that altered how a range of prohibited procedures under the Act and regulations were dealt with. All existing offences relating to specific procedures (on a range of animal species) were consolidated together under an offence to conduct a prohibited procedure. Legislation summary Prohibited procedures relating to dogs are:
• ear cropping
• tail docking.
Prohibited procedures can only be performed in Victoria by a registered veterinary practitioner for therapeutic reasons or, in the case of debarking, in accordance with the code of practice for the debarking of dogs. It is an offence for any other person to conduct a prohibited procedure on an animal. At the same time as the prohibited procedures offence was introduced, two new offences relating to prohibited procedures were also introduced into the Act. These related offences set out that:
• the owner or person in charge of an animal must not allow a prohibited procedure to be conducted on an animal; and
• the owner or person in charge of an animal cannot show or exhibit an animal, or allow an animal to be shown or exhibited, where the animal has had a prohibited procedure conducted illegally on it.