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Animal sentience laws impose new penalties for mistreatment of animals?

The ACT has become the first jurisdiction to recognise pets as “sentient beings”, after tough new animal welfare laws were passed in the Legislative Assembly The laws, which will come into effect in six months, recognise that animals can feel and perceive the world around them, and deserve to have a quality of life that “reflects their intrinsic value”. The legislation introduces tough new penalties for the mistreatment of animals, while also placing more restrictions on pet shop owners and breeders.

Owners will face $4000 fines

Owners will face $4000 fines if their dogs were confined for a full day,
and then not exercised within the next two hours.

The penalty would not apply if a dog was kept in a backyard, where it could exercise, or if it had to be confined indoors for its welfare. The government moved an amendment on Thursday to clarify that an owner would be confining their animal if they were keeping them in an enclosed space, or otherwise restricting their movement.
A $4000 penalty will apply for not providing pets with appropriate food, water, shelter
or a clean and hygenic environment.

Dog fighting $48,000

People who take part in violent animal activities, such as dog fighting, could be fined up to $48,000 and face three years’ imprisonment. Pet shop owners and kennels will be required to obtain a licence to operate before the laws come into effect.

Read and support the article in Canberra Times

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