Victorian codes of practice for animal welfare

Codes of practice

The codes of practice for animal welfare listed below are made under either the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act 1986 (POCTA Act) or the Domestic Animals Act 1994 (DA Act).

Codes of practice set out recommended minimum standards and practices for the keeping of a wide range of species and animal related activities. They should be read in conjunction with other relevant legislation such as the DAA and POCTA Acts.

The requirements of all DA Act codes are mandatory.

Most POCTA Act codes are advisory only – unless made mandatory through specific recognition in legislation. Compliance with the provisions of POCTA codes can provide a defence to a prosecution under the POCTA Act.

A range of Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines for livestock are in development at a national level. It is anticipated that Australian standards and guidelines agreed to by Victoria will be adopted through the new proposed Animal Welfare Act. This legislation is currently under development.