New regulations to strengthen our animal welfare system come into effect 1 October

In Uncategorized3 MinutesBy NZ Trucking magazineSeptember 4, 2018

A total of 45 new animal health and welfare regulations come into effect next month, covering a range of species and activities from stock transport and farm husbandry procedures to companion and working animals like dogs and horses.

The majority of the regulations reflect existing standards, but a few set new rules and requirements, such as prohibiting the tail docking of cows and dogs.

One of the main changes is that the new regulations will make it easier for Ministry for Primary Industries and the SPCA (Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals) to take action against animal mistreatment.

MPI director for animal health and welfare, Dr Chris Rodwell, says with under a month to go until the new regulations come into effect, MPI want to encourage people who are responsible for any type of animal to check they are up to date in how they are looking after them.

“Our team has been working with industry and sector groups to raise awareness of the regulations and ensure people understand and can meet their responsibilities.”

A number of regulations relate to both the supply of animals for transport and how animals are transported. The regulations around the supply of stock apply to the owner of, and every person in charge of, an animal.

The key messages for transporters are:

  • Plan transport as early as possible and confirm date and time with processors and farmers.
  • Only accept cows that are fit for transport. Drivers have the right, and must, refuse to load unfit cows. Those assessed as unfit must not be transported without a veterinary certificate.
  • Drivers should make regular stops during the journey to check the condition and welfare of their load. The first check should take place within 30 minutes of departure and subsequently at least two-hourly throughout the duration of the journey.
  • Lactating cows must not be without water for more than 12 hours, or without feed for more than 24 hours. These times are measured from when animals last received water and feed on farm.
  • In compliance with the Transport Code of Welfare, vehicles carrying animals must be operated in a manner that does not cause animals to fall or be injured during travel.
  • Vehicle covers must be used in appropriate circumstances to protect cows from adverse weather conditions while allowing adequate ventilation.

The Animal Welfare (Care and Procedures) Regulations 2018 are the latest set of regulations to be issued. They were issued in March and most will come into force 1 October 2018. More information on the Animal Welfare (Care and Procedures) Regulations 2018 can be found here: