Join us in the fight to save innocent lives
Friday, 23 September, 2016
The New Zealand Government has announced an action plan that will see animal shelters like the SPCA banned from re-homing dogs they see as "menacing".
What is going to happen to all the dogs that are guilty of nothing else than their visual appearance?
By making it illegal for animal shelters to re-home dogs of certain breeds, the Government are effectively condemning them to die.
Dogs will be judged – not on their character or temperament – but on how they look.
Their life will literally be determined by the shape of their face, or the size of their nose, or the colour of their eyes.
Not by how much they love their family, or playing with their friends at the beach, or how they would do anything for a chin scratch.
The SPCA believes that each individual dog should be judged based on temperament and behaviour, not breed. This is why each dog re-homed by the SPCA undergoes health and behaviour assessments.
This is not right. We won't stand by and allow innocent lives to be lost. Please stand with us.
Will you join our fight to stop the Government and help save these innocent lives?
This law change is part of an action plan the Government has rolled out in an attempt to reduce dog bites in our communities.
But we know that trying to fix this complex problem by killing thousands of dogs guilty of nothing but the way the look will not work.
How do we know this?
- Breed specific legislation has categorically been proven in studies worldwide not to reduce dog bites
- Many countries – including our Australian neighbours – are repealing their breed specific legislation because they do not work
- We believe responsible dog ownership and public education are key to making positive change in our community
So what is the SPCA's views on breed-specific legislation and the prevention of dog bites?
- Dog attacks are a major societal problem that requires a serious and effective long-term solution and our hearts go out to any family that is affected by this. Dog bites aren't a new problem, and the problem isn't exclusive to New Zealand. The Government doesn't know the true extent of dog bites in New Zealand because there is no central repository of dog bite statistics.
- The SPCA believes the key focus to address the multiple complex causes of dog bites is responsible dog ownership and public education.
- The SPCA is opposed to breed specific legislation because the evidence shows that they do not reduce dog attacks or make communities safer for people or companion animals.
- Our view based on the available, international scientific evidence, is that any dog may be dangerous and that dogs should not be declared ‘dangerous’ or ‘menacing’ on the basis of breed alone.
- We're not alone in this view. The Veterinary Associations and SPCAs of New Zealand, Australia, the UK, Canada and America do not support breed-specific legislation due to being ineffective and not protecting the public from dog attacks.