Animal Welfare Matters

Most Western Australians are worried that not enough is being done about animal welfare. If you’re one of them, please let Government know that we need more help.

We need another $5 million a year over the next four years. That’s around $2 per person per year in this State. $2 is a small price to pay...

Our business is booming. We wish it wasn't.

The RSPCA is one of the best-known and respected community services in Western Australia.  We know that’s because of the critically important work we do to rescue, rehabilitate and rehome animals. And while it’s gratifying to have the respect and affection of the community – and to be in such overwhelming demand – we wish it wasn’t so.

  • We wish we there wasn’t such a need for animals to be rescued from cruelty, abuse, starvation and neglect.
  • We’d be happy if our shelters weren’t overrun with abandoned pets and social media wasn’t overrun with gut-wrenching photos of frightened animals in pain; where “don’t gift animals” wasn’t a campaign every Christmas.
  • We’d rest easier if inhumane farming practices for chickens, cows, sheep and pigs were a thing of the past.
  • We’d sleep better at night if Australia’s native birds and animals weren’t being wiped from the face of the planet.1

But that isn’t the case. Our business is booming.

In 2019-20, we answered 15,000 cruelty calls a year, investigated almost 7,000 incidents, cared for 2,000 rescued and abandoned animals, rehomed over 1,000 animals, delivered education to more than 900 school children, and performed 5,600 vet consultations and 690 sterilisation surgeries. That is on top of our fundraising, training, foster and volunteer programs.2

And it isn’t nearly enough. Our resources are stretched to breaking point and rural and remote communities are underserviced. It is heart-breaking but it means some animals have to go without our help.

We urgently need to ramp up action on animal welfare in this State and expand the reach of the RSPCA.

1. Why is Australia a global leader in wildlife extinctions? Sydney Morning Herald, 20 July 2020.

2. RSPCA WA Annual Report 2019-20

Most Western Australians are worried that not enough is being done about animal welfare. We are immensely grateful for the funds we receive from Government and our generous supporters but it is not enough to do the job the community expects from us. We need the Government to invest an additional $20m over the next four years – just $2 for each of us. We believe it’s a small price to pay for the protection the community expects.

$2 is a small price to pay to protect animals in agriculture

RSPCA WA is committed to driving changes in animal welfare policy and legislation that stamp out harmful practices and deliver meaningful outcomes for our farmers.

Consumer attitudes are changing when it comes to the way we produce food and fibre from animals and the social licence of producers who continue to use outmoded and inhumane practices is at risk.

We want to support producers and show how good animal welfare practices can help them achieve better economic results.

We are seeking Government policy support to address four critical issues:

  1. Legislation to mandate the use of pain relief for mulesing
    Despite an industry commitment to end mulesing by 2010, 5-10 million lambs are still mulesed each year – at least one million without pain relief. Research shows 84.1% of woolgrowers report increased return on investment since transitioning to plain-bodied Merinos and phasing out mulesing.
  1. Phase out battery egg production
    Intense battery farming still accounts for half our egg production despite a shift to free-range products driven by consumer demand. Western Australia has the potential to be a national leader by transitioning to 100% cage free eggs over the next four years. 
  1. Eliminate sow-stalls in pork production
    The Australian pork industry committed to voluntarily phasing out sow stalls by 2017. A 2019/20 industry survey showed around 10% of producers are still using gestation stalls which means up to 4,000 sows in WA are still held in confined conditions for up to 12 weeks. We call on the WA Government to phase out the practice during this term. 
  1. Clearly regulate abattoirs and knackeries
    The public outcry surrounding knackeries processing racehorses highlighted the need for greater transparency in WA’s 20 abattoirs so the industry can maintain its social license to operate. There is still potential for poor killing techniques to be used on horses and other livestock, because of a lack of regulation and oversite. RSPCA WA inspectors are currently not permitted to inspect commercial operations, like abattoirs and knackeries, without probable cause. We must be able to carry our proactive inspections.

How can you help?

If you think another $2 per person per year is a small price to pay to help end animal cruelty and abuse in WA, ask your local politician to support the RSPCA Six-step Plan.  

Four ways you can help today