A Letter From DOGS Victoria President, Mr Wayne Fleming
I wanted to take a moment to write to you to provide an update on some of the latest developments on the Domestic Animals Amendment (Puppy Farm and Pet Shops) Bill 2016.
DOGS Victoria have been in several high level negotiations, the latest of those meetings on 8th November 2016, where DOGS Victoria were verbally advised by the Minister’s office that the Government was considering a number of changes to the Bill in response to concerns raised by DOGS Victoria and other stakeholders.
DOGS Victoria representatives were informed that instead of DABs, the changes would see all breeders be required to obtain a breeding permit, which will be made available through the local Councils. DOGS Victoria was informed that the Planning Minister would be consulted with a view to putting out Planning Guidelines that would “encourage” councils to grant “Recreational Breeder Permits” to people that had existing rights, i.e. people that had already been breeding without incident in any particular property. However, how ‘existing use’ will be defined, and what will happen to new breeders, is not clear.
Leaving aside the fact that the guidelines for Councils on how to administer the breeding permits are not written as yet, and will be linked to a central database, which has not yet been designed, our information is that breeders with permits will need to adhere to the Code that applies to DABs (or similar), noting this is being reviewed by the Department, albeit without stakeholder consultation and as such we are not aware of what it will contain.
As the permit framework will still be issued and managed by Councils, our concerns regarding transparency, consistency and equity in the approach taken by Councils in granting and management of the breeding permits remain.
While we have been told there are plans for the Code to be revised there is no information as yet on what the changes may be. Importantly, nothing has yet been tabled and, in terms of the parliamentary process, the current Bill is unchanged.
We will update DOGS Victoria members as soon as we are made aware of any developments, but both the current Bill and the proposed changes are addressed in DOGS Victoria’s submission to the Parliamentary Review of the Bill scheduled for 15 November 2016.
I want to extend my personal thanks to each and every DOGS Victoria member who has been active in raising awareness of this Bill. This show of public strength continues to put pressure on the government, and DOGS Victoria will continue to negotiate for a framework that will safeguard the future of pedigree dogs.
We also want to share with you guys the link to the Purebred Dogs website where you can cast your vote and your voice to the fight to keep our awesome dogs and lovely puppies in the home