Healthy Happy Dogs Matter

We need your help to show that healthy happy dogs matter

Healthy and happy dogs matter to us. This is why we are worried about a proposal by the Victorian Government to push puppies and dog breeding into the shadows.

We welcome effective regulation that protects and improves animal welfare but we are worried that the Government’s proposed legislation won’t necessarily improve animal welfare – and in fact may lead to worse animal welfare outcomes.

What is happening?

Labor is proposing that all dog breeders have a maximum of 10 female dogs. This is regardless of the care they are given, the experience of the breeders, or the number of staff a breeder has. It also doesn’t take into account the facilities, the rehoming practices or the benefit to the community.

There is no scientific or animal welfare reason for imposing a limit of 10 breeding dogs at one property. A NSW parliamentary inquiry into this issue found there was no valid reason to impose a limit on breeding dogs.

The Bill will be brought to Victorian Parliament in August 2016.

See below for our comments in the media about this issue:

Australian Articles:
Pain for Victorian Labor as dog breeders maul mongrel of a law
Weekend Australian Inquirer
Victorian puppy farm bill back on the leash
New Victorian laws will create puppy black market- vets

Heald Sun:
Herald Sun on dog breeding laws

Andrew Bolt:
Andrew Bolt live on SkyNews

Other:

The Gippsland Times, 2016

Australia Wide – ABC

The Australian

The Gippsland Times, 2015

The Age, 2015

Banksia Park Puppies Cavoodles

What does it mean for Banksia Park Puppies?

Banksia Park Puppies will not exist as it does now. Victorians will not have an open and transparent place to get their family-friendly puppies.

Smaller does not mean safer. Our property has more than 100 breeding dogs which are looked after to the highest possible standard. The scale of our business enables us to make the investments needed to ensure our dogs and puppies are provided the best care and go to their new homes healthy, happy and well-socialised.

We have invested approximately $250,000 over several years to ensure our breeding facilities meet or exceed the required standards. Our dogs have access to playgrounds in their yards, two different agility yards, heated and cooled nurseries (including heated floors) and exercise areas in the nursery.

We welcome the supervision of our business by local council and animal welfare inspectors.

The welfare of our dogs and puppies is our top priority. We have nothing to hide and we welcome visitors so they can see how puppies and their parents are cared for.

Many of our customers carry out extensive research before choosing their puppy, many of which includes a visit to our property to see for themselves how our puppies are cared for. This avenue will no longer exist, and closing a business such as ours will force more consumers online and into unregulated markets.

Banksia Park Puppies care

What will it mean for you and puppies?

The legislation is well-meaning, but will have unintended consequences and may in fact lead to worse animal welfare outcomes.

We welcome effective regulation that protects and improves animal welfare and stops cruel puppy farming operations, but this legislation will not target these people.

There is strong demand for puppies and the proposed legislation will likely promote an underground industry with more (not fewer) rogue breeders, making it harder to monitor and ensure compliance with the rules.

Dog breeding businesses should be regulated and transparent but the proposed legislation does nothing to promote this objective.

Banksia Park Puppies handling

Victoria needs your input into the Upper House Committee Review

The Victorian Parliament is now holding an Upper House Committee Review into this issue to properly consider the proposed legislation.

We are putting in a written submission to the Committee, and have also been called to appear as a witness.  If you would like to have your say you can, send an email with your statement to the Secretariat at dabillinquiry@parliament.vic.gov.au. It does not need to be long and you could include the following:

  • Your experience in looking for a puppy in Victoria
  • The things that matter to you when buying a puppy
  • Your experience of buying from Banksia Park

We need your help!

What can I do?

Help protect puppies in Victoria - contact your MP now

We ask all our supporters, and anyone passionate about animal welfare to contact your local MP and support our call for amendments to the ‘Puppy Farm Bill’.

We ask you to contact your local MP, and your local Upper House members

If you need help finding your local MP, the Victorian Electoral Commission can help find the Sitting Members for your region. Once you put in your address you will see your:

State District Sitting Member (your local State MP) and

State Region Sitting Members (your Upper House members).

Upper House members who don’t belong to either of the major parties will have an important role to play. These are for example: Fiona Patten (Sex Party); Jeff Bourman & Daniel Young (Shooters and Fishers); James Purcell (Vote 1 Local Jobs); or Rachel Carling-Jenkins (DLP).

We want effective regulation that protects and improves animal welfare, not one which pushes an entire industry into the shadows. 

FAQs

Labor has said that this law will stop illegal puppy farms, is this right?

No. This law will only target legal dog breeding businesses – who hold licences – to a maximum of 10 dogs. These businesses are already inspected (or should be by their local council) and already follow tight rules governing everything from cleaning to record keeping. These are the businesses who will be most affected.

Isn't there a puppy over-supply, leading to too many dogs in shelters?

Around half of our customers already look for a dog from a shelter before coming to Banksia Park. They come to us as they can’t always find dogs of the right breed, size or temperament for their family or living arrangements. The number of dogs in shelters has actually dropped over the past 5 years as can be seen in the RSPCA statistics.

Along with that, the dogs who are euthanized in shelters are mostly not suitable for new homes: as quoted by the RSPCA.

“Of dogs euthanased, the majority of cases are because of severe behavioural issues (67.81%). This includes aggression and severe anxiety that the RSPCA is not able to or has not been able to treat through behavioural modification programs. Such issues can compromise the dog’s welfare and quality of life and can be a safety risk to adults and children and other animals.”

I've heard that dogs in breeding properties do not get proper socialisation, is this right?

At Banksia Park Puppies raising healthy and happy puppies is our top priority. We are experienced, ethical and professional dog breeders. Socialisation of our puppies is an important

Our dogs are housed in yards which are around the size of suburban backyards and they are moved around the property in different yards to provide changing views and surroundings. They have access to playgrounds in their yards, two different agility yards, and exercise areas in the nursery.

We have specialised birthing nurseries and nurseries with heated floors which are cleaned and disinfected daily.

The activity programs for our dogs and puppies are varied according to their age level and development needs. Our dogs have daily socialisation activity and interaction with other dogs and people: including our staff and visits by school children.

Our puppies are handled daily and have a lot of enrichment through different toys. Our breeding dogs have had intensive socialisation and are rehomed into very loving families after five litters. Our socialisation program is important to us as it ensures the health and happiness of mum and dad as well as the puppies.

I've heard that dog breeding is always in dirty, cramped conditions, leading to sicknesses and general unhappiness for the parents. Shouldn't we shut this down?

We welcome effective regulation that protects and improves animal welfare and stops cruel puppy farming operations. But at Banksia Park Puppies we are proud of the standard of care we provide for our dogs and puppies.

We share the community’s concern about cruel puppy farming and we agree more needs to be done to stop practices that do not promote the welfare of breeding dogs and puppies. The Government’s proposed legislation won’t necessarily improve animal welfare and in fact may lead to worse animal welfare outcomes by promoting an underground industry where rogue breeders become more difficult to monitor and even harder to prosecute

At Banksia Park Puppies our dogs are housed in yards around the size of suburban backyards and they are moved around the property to provide changing views and surroundings. Our dogs have access to playgrounds in their yards, two different agility yards and exercise areas in the nursery. We have specialised birthing nurseries, and nurseries with heated floors which are cleaned and disinfected daily. Our housing areas are also cleaned and disinfected regularly.

Our business is completely transparent with the welfare of our dogs and puppies our top priority and we have nothing to hide. We make a big investment in the health, temperament and socialisation of our puppies which is critical for their ongoing welfare.

We welcome visitors so they can see how their puppies and their parents are cared for.

If we shut down all breeders, families will still be able to get their dogs and puppies from shelters won’t they?

Making dogs only available through shelters will not meet the demand for puppies.

Around half of our Banksia Park Puppies customers already look for a dog from a shelter before coming to Banksia Park for either a puppy or a rehoming dog. The families can’t always find dogs of the right breed, size or temperament for their family or living arrangements.

The demand for puppies is high and the proposed legislation will likely promote an underground puppy industry with rogue breeders becoming more difficult to monitor and even harder to prosecute.

This law will stop people breeding dogs illegally wont it?

This law may in fact do the opposite – there are unintended consequences to this legislation.

This legislation promotes an underground industry instead of an open and transparent industry. Underground breeding is difficult to monitor, and even harder to prosecute. Local councils and animal welfare agencies find it challenging to ensure compliance with the existing regulations.

Shutting down reputable businesses such as Banksia Park Puppies will provide more incentive for illegal puppy farming operations to meet the unmet demand for puppies, and will force more consumers online and into unregulated markets.

If we shut down all breeders, families will still be able to get their dogs and puppies from shelters won’t they?

Making dogs only available through shelters will not meet the demand for puppies.

Around half of our Banksia Park Puppies customers already look for a dog from a shelter before coming to Banksia Park for either a puppy or a rehoming dog. The families can’t always find dogs of the right breed, size or temperament for their family or living arrangements.

The demand for puppies is high and the proposed legislation will likely promote an underground puppy industry with rogue breeders becoming more difficult to monitor and even harder to prosecute.