The Australian Veterinary Association is calling for a national horse register to be established and says it will lobby the Federal Government to implement such a system as soon as possible.
It is also pushing for better enforcement of animal welfare standards at abattoirs and knackeries, following disturbing footage on the ABC’s The 7.30 Report of racehorses being slaughtered at an abattoir.
The Australian Veterinary Association (AVA) is calling upon the Australian government to implement a nationwide welfare standard and register to protect the welfare of all horses — not just racehorses. The AVA said the footage shown in the media “was highly distressing”, and it strongly condemned the mass slaughter of horses.
“It is paramount that the welfare of all horses, not just a chosen few, undergoes reform,” said Dr Sam Nugent, President of AVA’s Equine Veterinarians Australia (EVA) Group.
“The EVA is concerned that in the wake of the footage, the plight of many horses that are not racehorses has been ignored. It is vital to ensure that the welfare of all horses is improved in the development of the national welfare standard.
“If abattoirs and knackeries are considered necessary, there needs to be proper enforcement of animal welfare standards to ensure that they are not breaching animal cruelty laws. Breaches of any animal welfare cannot be tolerated.”
The AVA and the association’s Equine Veterinarians Australia Group advocate for the health and welfare of all horses, and has a policy on Humane Slaughter, which can be viewed here.