animal welfare, , " />

Farm animals don’t wait on government

By Leslie Ballentine, Farming and food commentator

I am often asked what, if any, laws govern the treatment of farm animals in Canada.  On that score there’s plenty to report.

Since 2005, there have been changes to most provincial animal welfare laws.  You can see for yourself at:

Mainly, these have been penalty increases but have also included a few other common changes. 

 Increased ownership bans, duties of care requirements, and new powers for inspectors are some of the changes beyond higher maximum fines and prison sentences for those that mistreat animals in Canada.  The Federal government also got into the act by increasing penalties for those convicted of animal cruelty under Federal laws.

These changes apply to farmers and pet owners alike and in many cases have the whole-hearted support of the farm community. After-all, the vast majority of farmers and ranchers work hard to try to keep their animals safe and healthy every day of their lives.  They, like most people, want to see that those who are not taking proper care of animals are properly dealt with.  But at the same time farmers, just like most of the rest of us, won’t support needless, intrusive and costly government rules, no matter how well intentioned.
While these legislative changes have come to pass, the farming community has not been idle.

Believing that government rules and regulations, as well as day-to-day farming practices, should be based on scientific outcomes and not perception or emotion, farmers collectively invest a lot of time and money into research projects. Most of these projects are conducted at Canadian universities and government-run research stations. Some are also conducted by private companies.  Collecting statistical data into such things as husbandry practices, livestock transport, and meat processing is also being done. The information gleaned so far looks to be a good return on investment by taking out some of the guess work. The value of science in helping to develop new laws and regulations, industry-driven best management practices and even consumer labels can’t be over-stated. And to paraphrase one renowned animal welfare scientist: “You can’t improve what you don’t measure.”

Until the next BLOG.


Posted by OFAC on January 26th, 2011 :: Filed under Animal cruelty,Regulations,Research
Tags :: , ,
You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

One Response to “Farm animals don’t wait on government”

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by APAO, Ontario Farm Animal . Ontario Farm Animal said: New post: Farm animals don’t wait on government [...]

Leave a Reply

Type your comment in the box below: