You are using a version of the website built for webcrawlers and people whose devices cannot use javascript.
Some functionality will not be available.
Warning: This page is an archive.
General administrative information and links are not current and should not be used.
Contents (1979 - 200)
Skip contents
Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1979 No 200
Current version for 7 July 2017 to date (accessed 17 October 2017 at 20:16)
Part 2
Part 2 Offences
Note.
 Section 9 (1) of the Veterinary Practice Act 2003 makes it an offence for a person to do a restricted act of veterinary science except in certain circumstances. Restricted act of veterinary science is defined in section 7 of that Act.
5   Cruelty to animals
(1)  A person shall not commit an act of cruelty upon an animal.
(2)  A person in charge of an animal shall not authorise the commission of an act of cruelty upon the animal.
(3)  A person in charge of an animal shall not fail at any time:
(a)  to exercise reasonable care, control or supervision of an animal to prevent the commission of an act of cruelty upon the animal,
(b)  where pain is being inflicted upon the animal, to take such reasonable steps as are necessary to alleviate the pain, or
(c)  where it is necessary for the animal to be provided with veterinary treatment, whether or not over a period of time, to provide it with that treatment.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
6   Aggravated cruelty to animals
(1)  A person shall not commit an act of aggravated cruelty upon an animal.
Maximum penalty: 1,000 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 200 penalty units or imprisonment for 2 years, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  In any proceedings for an offence against subsection (1), the court may:
(a)  where it is not satisfied that the person accused of the offence is guilty of the offence, and
(b)  where it is satisfied that that person is guilty of an offence against section 5 (1),
convict that person of an offence against section 5 (1).
7   Carriage and conveyance of animals
(1)  A person shall not:
(a)  carry or convey an animal, or
(b)  where the person is a person in charge of an animal—authorise the carriage or conveyance of the animal,
in a manner which unreasonably, unnecessarily or unjustifiably inflicts pain upon the animal.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  Without limiting the generality of subsection (1), a person shall not:
(a)  carry or convey a horse on a multi-deck vehicle, or
(b)  where the person is a person in charge of the horse—authorise the carriage or conveyance of a horse on a multi-deck vehicle.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2A)  Without limiting subsection (1), a person must not carry or convey a dog (other than a dog being used to work livestock), on the open back of a moving vehicle on a public street unless the dog is restrained or enclosed in such a way as to prevent the dog falling from the vehicle.
Maximum penalty: 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both.
(3)  In this section:
multi-deck vehicle means a motor vehicle or a trailer drawn by a motor vehicle that:
(a)  is used to carry or convey animals, and
(b)  on which animals are carried or conveyed in two or more layered sections.
8   Animals to be provided with food, drink or shelter
(1)  A person in charge of an animal shall not fail to provide the animal with food, drink or shelter, or any of them, which, in each case, is proper and sufficient and which it is reasonably practicable in the circumstances for the person to provide.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  In any proceedings for an offence against subsection (1), evidence that an animal was not provided with clean water during a period of 24 hours is evidence that the person accused of the offence has failed to provide the animal with proper and sufficient drink during that period.
(3)  In any proceedings for an offence against subsection (1), evidence that an animal was not provided with food or shelter during a period of 24 hours (or, in the case of an animal of a class prescribed by the regulations, during the period prescribed for that class of animal) is evidence that the person accused of the offence has failed to provide the animal with proper and sufficient food or shelter during that period.
(4)  Before commencing proceedings for an offence against subsection (1) in respect of a stock animal depastured on rateable land (within the meaning of the Local Land Services Act 2013), the prosecution must obtain advice from Local Land Services and the Department about the state of the animal (if practicable) and the appropriate care for it.
(5)  The prosecution may, with leave of the court granted in such circumstances as the court considers just, commence or continue proceedings for an offence against subsection (1), despite having failed to comply with subsection (4).
9   Confined animals to be exercised
(1)  A person in charge of an animal which is confined shall not fail to provide the animal with adequate exercise.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(1A)  Subsection (1) does not apply to a person in charge of an animal if the animal is:
(a)  a stock animal other than a horse, or
(b)  an animal of a species which is usually kept in captivity by means of a cage.
(2)  In any proceedings for an offence against subsection (1), evidence that an animal referred to in that subsection was not released from confinement during a period of 24 hours is evidence that the person accused of the offence has failed to provide the animal with adequate exercise during that period.
(3)  A person in charge of an animal (other than a stock animal) shall not confine the animal in a cage of which the height, length or breadth is insufficient to allow the animal a reasonable opportunity for adequate exercise.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation or 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(4)  In any proceedings for an offence against subsection (3) in respect of an animal, the person accused of the offence is not guilty of the offence if the person satisfies the court that the person confined the animal:
(a)  for the purpose of:
(i)  carrying or conveying the animal, or
(ii)  displaying the animal in a public exhibition or public competition,
in a manner that inflicted no unnecessary pain upon the animal, and
(b)  for a period not exceeding 24 hours.
10   Tethering of animals
(1)  A person shall not:
(a)  tether an animal, or
(b)  where the person is a person in charge of an animal—authorise the tethering of the animal,
for an unreasonable length of time or by means of an unreasonably heavy, or unreasonably short, tether.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  A person must not tether a sow in a piggery.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation or 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(3)  A person must not confine a bird by means of a tether.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(4)  It is a defence to a prosecution for an offence against subsection (3) if the defendant satisfies the court that the bird to which the offence relates was a raptor and that the tether involved was a jess that was used solely to tether the bird to its handler.
11   Animals not to be abandoned
A person shall not abandon an animal.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
12   Certain procedures not to be performed on animals
(1)  A person shall not:
(a)  dock the tail of a horse, bull, ox, bullock, steer, cow, heifer, calf or dog,
(b)  crop the ears of a dog,
(c)  operate upon a dog for the purpose of preventing the dog from being able to bark,
(d)  remove one or more of the claws of a cat,
(e)  grind, trim or clip one or more teeth of a sheep,
(f)  perform a clitoridectomy on a greyhound, or
(g)  fire or hot iron brand the face of an animal.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  A person is not guilty of an offence against this section if the court is satisfied that the procedure comprising the alleged offence:
(a)  was docking the tail of a calf less than 6 months old when the offence was alleged to have been committed, or
(a1)    (Repealed)
(b)  was:
(i)  docking the tail of a cow, heifer or female calf,
(ii)  operating upon a dog for the purpose of preventing the dog from being able to bark,
(iii)  removing one or more of the claws of a cat,
(iv)  grinding, trimming or clipping one or more teeth of a sheep,
(v)  performing a clitoridectomy on a greyhound, or
(vi)  firing or hot iron branding the face of an animal,
by a veterinary practitioner,
and the procedure was performed in the prescribed circumstances and in accordance with any conditions specified in the regulations.
(2A)  A person is not guilty of an offence against this section if the court is satisfied that the procedure comprising the alleged offence was the docking of the tail of a dog, was performed by a veterinary practitioner and was in the interests of the dog’s welfare.
(3)  In this section:
clip the tooth of a sheep means breaking off the crown of a tooth with pliers or another tool or implement.
dock the tail of an animal means to remove all or part of the tail of the animal (other than a part of the tail consisting only of fur, hair, feathers or the like) whether by surgical or other means.
grind the tooth of a sheep means grinding down a tooth with an electric angle grinder or another tool or implement.
trim the tooth of a sheep means cutting off a tooth with an abrasive disc or another tool or implement.
12A   Registers relating to certain procedures
(1)  A veterinary practitioner who carries out a procedure referred to in section 12 (1) shall, not later than 7 days after carrying out the procedure, enter the prescribed particulars of the procedure in a register kept in the prescribed form by the veterinary practitioner or the employer of the veterinary practitioner.
Maximum penalty: 50 penalty units.
(2)  A register containing the prescribed particulars of a procedure shall be kept by:
(a)  the veterinary practitioner or former veterinary practitioner who carried out the procedure, or
(b)  if the veterinary practitioner who carried out the procedure did so in the course of employment by another person, by that employer or former employer,
for a period of not less than 2 years after the procedure is carried out.
Maximum penalty: 50 penalty units.
(3)  A person shall, at the request of an officer, make available for inspection by the officer any register required to be kept by the person under this section.
Maximum penalty: 50 penalty units.
(4)  Nothing in subsection (3) limits the powers of an officer under section 24G.
13   Certain animals not to be ridden etc
A person shall not:
(a)  ride, drive, use, carry or convey an animal, or
(b)  where the person is a person in charge of an animal—authorise the riding, driving, using, carrying or conveying of the animal,
if the animal is unfit for the purpose of its being so ridden, driven, used, carried or conveyed.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
14   Injuries to animals to be reported
The driver of a vehicle which strikes and injures an animal (other than a bird) shall not fail:
(a)  where, in consequence of the injury, pain has been inflicted upon the animal—to take reasonable steps to alleviate the pain, and
(b)  where that driver believes, or ought reasonably to believe, that the animal is a domestic animal—to inform, as soon as practicable, an officer or a person in charge of the animal that the animal has been injured.
Maximum penalty: 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both.
15   Poisons not to be administered to animals
(1)  In this section, poison includes:
(a)  a substance included in the list, as in force for the time being, proclaimed under section 8 of the Poisons and Therapeutic Goods Act 1966 (or a substance that includes such a substance), or
(b)  a substance containing glass or any other thing likely to kill or injure an animal.
(2)  A person shall not:
(a)  administer a poison, or a substance containing a poison, to a domestic animal,
(b)  with the intention of destroying or injuring a domestic animal, throw, cast, drop, leave or lay a poison, or a substance containing a poison, in any place, or
(c)  have in his or her possession a poison with the intention of using it to kill or injure a domestic animal.
Maximum penalty: 1,000 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 200 penalty units or imprisonment for 2 years, or both, in the case of an individual.
16   Certain electrical devices not to be used upon animals
(1)  In this section:
electrical device means a device of a type prescribed by the regulations.
sell includes:
(a)  auction or exchange,
(b)  offer, expose, supply or receive for sale, and
(c)  send, forward or deliver for sale or on sale.
(2)  A person shall not:
(a)  use an electrical device upon an animal,
(b)  sell any electrical device, or
(c)  have in his or her possession or custody any electrical device.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(3)  Nothing in subsection (2) prevents a person from:
(a)  using an electrical device upon an animal belonging to a prescribed species, or
(b)  selling or having in his or her possession or custody an electrical device for use upon an animal belonging to a prescribed species.
17   Certain spurs etc or implements designed for fighting not to be kept
A person shall not have in his or her possession or custody:
(a)  any spur, or any other similar appliance, which has sharpened rowels, or
(b)  any article, implement or other thing made or adapted, or intended by the person to be used, for attachment to an animal for the purpose of:
(i)  training the animal to fight another animal, or
(ii)  increasing the ability of the animal to inflict injury on another animal during fighting.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
18   Animal baiting and fighting prohibited
(1)  A person shall not:
(a)  use any place, or manage or control any place which is used,
(b)  authorise any place to be used, or
(c)  receive money for the admission of another person to any place which is used,
for the purpose of conducting a bull-fight, baiting an animal or causing an animal to fight.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  A person must not:
(a)  cause, procure, permit, encourage or incite a fight in which one or more animals are pitted against another animal or animals, whether of the same species or not, or
(b)  advertise the intention to conduct such a fight, or
(c)  promote, organise or attend such a fight.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation or 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(3)  In any proceedings under subsection (2), evidence that the defendant was present at a place at which a fight of the kind referred to in that subsection was being conducted is prima facie evidence that the defendant attended the fight.
18A   Bull-fighting prohibited
A person shall not advertise, promote or take part in a bull-fight.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
19   Trap-shooting prohibited
A person shall not advertise, promote or take part in a match, competition or other activity in which an animal is released from confinement for the purpose of that person, or any other person, shooting at it.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
19A   Game parks prohibited
(1)  In this section:
animal does not include a bird, reptile, amphibian or fish.
game park means premises within the boundaries of which:
(a)  animals are confined, and
(b)  the taking or killing of those animals as a sport or recreation is permitted by virtue of the payment of an admission fee or the giving of other consideration.
take, in relation to any animal, includes hunt, shoot, poison, net, snare, spear, pursue, capture and injure the animal.
(2)  A person shall not:
(a)  use any premises, or manage or control any premises which are used,
(b)  authorise any premises to be used, or
(c)  receive money or any other consideration for the admission of another person to any premises which are used,
for the purposes of a game park.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(3)  A person admitted to a game park by virtue of the payment of an admission fee or the giving of other consideration shall not take or kill any animal in the game park.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(4)  Nothing in this section applies to:
(a)  such animals, or
(b)  the taking or killing of animals in such circumstances by such persons or in or on such premises,
as may be prescribed for the purposes of this section.
20   Certain animal-catching activities prohibited
A person shall not advertise, promote or take part in a match, competition or other activity in which an animal is released from confinement for the purpose of that person, or any other person, chasing, catching or confining it.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
21   Live baiting, coursing and other similar activities prohibited
(1)  A person who:
(a)  causes, procures, permits or encourages an activity in which an animal is released from confinement for the purpose of its being chased, caught or confined by a dog, or
(b)  advertises the intention to conduct such an activity, or
(c)  promotes, organises or attends such an activity, or
(d)  uses an animal as a lure or kill for the purpose of blooding greyhounds or in connection with the trialing, training or racing of any coursing dog, or
(e)  keeps or is in charge of an animal for use as a lure or kill for the purpose of blooding greyhounds or in connection with the trialing, training or racing of any coursing dog,
is guilty of an offence.
Maximum penalty: 1,000 penalty units in the case of a corporation or 200 penalty units or imprisonment for 2 years, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  In any proceedings under subsection (1), evidence in writing by a veterinary practitioner that an animal was alive at the time of its attack by a dog is prima facie evidence that the animal was alive at the time of that attack.
(2A)  In any proceedings under subsection (1) (c), evidence that the defendant was present at a place at which an activity of the kind referred to in that subsection was being conducted is prima facie evidence that the defendant attended the activity.
(2B)  In any proceedings under subsection (1) (d), evidence that the defendant was in charge or in possession of an animal that appeared to have been used as a lure or kill in the manner referred to in that subsection is prima facie evidence that the defendant used the animal as a lure or kill in that manner.
(2C)  In any proceedings under subsection (1) (e), evidence that the defendant was in charge of an animal of a species prescribed by the regulations at a place used for the trialing, training or racing of any coursing dog is prima facie evidence that the defendant kept or was in charge of an animal for use as a lure or kill for the purpose referred to in that subsection.
(2D)  For the purposes of subsections (1) (d) and (2B), animal includes the carcass, or the skin or any other part, of an animal.
(3)  It is a defence to any proceedings for an offence against subsection (1) if the defendant shows that the act constituting the alleged offence was done by the defendant in the course of, and for the purpose of:
(a)  mustering stock, the working of stock in yards or any other animal husbandry activity, or
(b)  sheep dog trials.
(4)  For the removal of doubt, section 24 (1) (b) (i), in its application to this section, includes hunting, shooting, snaring, trapping, catching or capturing an animal by using a dog, but only in a manner that inflicted no unnecessary pain on the animal.
21A   Firing prohibited
A person who applies a thermal stimulus (such as hot wires) to the leg of an animal with the intention of causing tissue damage and the development of scar tissue around tendons and ligaments of the leg is guilty of an offence.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
21B   Tail nicking prohibited
A person who cuts the tail of a horse with the intention of causing the horse to carry the tail high is guilty of an offence.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
21C   Steeplechasing and hurdle racing prohibited
A person who organises or participates in a steeplechase or hurdle race is guilty of an offence.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation or 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
21D   (Repealed)
22   Severely injured animals not to be sold
(1)  Subject to subsection (2), a person shall not purchase, acquire, keep or sell, or offer or expose for sale, an animal which is so severely injured, so diseased or in such a condition that it is cruel to keep it alive.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  In any proceedings for an offence against subsection (1), the person accused of the offence is not guilty of the offence if the person satisfies the court that the person purchased, acquired, kept or sold, or offered or exposed for sale, the animal referred to in that subsection for the purpose of causing it to be promptly destroyed.
(3)  Where a person purchases or acquires an animal for the purpose of causing the animal to be promptly destroyed, the person shall cause it to be promptly destroyed in a manner that causes it to die quickly and without unnecessary pain.
Maximum penalty (subsection (3)): 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
23   Certain traps not to be set
(1)  A person shall not, in a prescribed part of New South Wales, set a trap of a prescribed type.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(2)  A person must not:
(a)  in any part of New South Wales, set a steel-jawed trap, or
(b)  possess a steel-jawed trap with the intention of using it to trap an animal.
Maximum penalty: 250 penalty units in the case of a corporation and 50 penalty units or imprisonment for 6 months, or both, in the case of an individual.
(3)  In this section:
steel-jawed trap means a trap that has jaws that are made of steel, iron or other metal and that are designed to spring together and trap an animal when a leg or other part of the animal’s body comes into contact with, or is placed between, the jaws, but does not include a soft-jawed trap (that is, a trap with steel jaws that are offset and padded).
24   Certain defences
(1)  In any proceedings for an offence against this Part or the regulations in respect of an animal, the person accused of the offence is not guilty of the offence if the person satisfies the court that the act or omission in respect of which the proceedings are being taken was done, authorised to be done or omitted to be done by that person:
(a)  where, at the time when the offence is alleged to have been committed, the animal was:
(i)  a stock animal—in the course of, and for the purpose of, ear-marking or ear-tagging the animal or branding, other than firing or hot iron branding of the face of, the animal,
(ii)  a pig of less than 2 months of age or a stock animal of less than 6 months of age which belongs to a class of animals comprising cattle, sheep or goats—in the course of, and for the purpose of, castrating the animal,
(iii)  a goat of less than 1 month of age or a stock animal of less than 12 months of age which belongs to the class of animal comprising cattle—in the course of, and for the purpose of, dehorning the animal,
(iv)  a sheep of less than 6 months of age—in the course of, and for the purpose of, tailing the animal, or
(v)  a sheep of less than 12 months of age—in the course of, and for the purpose of, performing the Mules operation upon the animal,
in a manner that inflicted no unnecessary pain upon the animal,
(b)  in the course of, and for the purpose of:
(i)  hunting, shooting, snaring, trapping, catching or capturing the animal, or
(ii)  destroying the animal, or preparing the animal for destruction, for the purpose of producing food for human consumption,
in a manner that inflicted no unnecessary pain upon the animal,
(c)  in the course of, and for the purpose of, destroying the animal, or preparing the animal for destruction:
(i)  in accordance with the precepts of the Jewish religion or of any other religion prescribed for the purposes of this subparagraph, or
(ii)  in compliance with any duty imposed upon that person by or under this or any other Act,
(d)    (Repealed)
(e)  in the course of, and for the purpose of:
(i)  carrying out animal research, or
(ii)  supplying animals for use in connection with animal research,
in accordance with the provisions of the Animal Research Act 1985, or
(f)  for the purpose of feeding a predatory animal lawfully kept by the person if:
(i)  the act concerned was the release of live prey for the predatory animal, and
(ii)  the diet of the predatory animal included animals of the kind released, and
(iii)  the person believed on reasonable grounds that the feeding of live prey to the predatory animal was necessary for the predatory animal’s survival because the predatory animal would not eat a dead animal or meat from a dead animal.
(2)  Subsection (1) (b) does not apply to a person accused of an offence against section 19A.
(3)    (Repealed)