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10 years on

Alma Doepel refit well underway
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Away from the desk

The little bent tree
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Chamber update

School holiday fun
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Docklander

Dan’s a community man
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Fashion

Top five street style trends
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Health and Wellbeing

Modern approach to musculoskeletal pain
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Tram no Metro - Bike danger
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Tony’s back in business
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Owners Corporation Law

Take more care with your insurance
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Pets Corner

Best of friends
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Precinct Perspectives

My view of Docklands; from NewQuay
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SkyPad Living

Sharing our vertical commons
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Street Art

Goodbye from Blender Studios
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The District

A reading room for our community
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We Live Here

A Royal Commission into industry scandals
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Letters to the Editor - Dec 16 / Jan 17

05 Dec 2016

End of “apartment” dogs

The State Parliament is currently reviewing the Domestic Animals Amendment (Puppy Farms and Pet Shops) Bill 2016.

The bill came about as a result of media exposure of, as the Minister for Agriculture described them, “cruel illegal puppy farms”. We support, as we are sure the general community also supports, the cessation of properties breeding puppies operating outside the law and with substandard practices.

The State Government, with animal rights groups, have drafted legislation that is overbearing, intrusive and non-evidence based. It proposes to ban/eradicate legal, registered breeders that conform to the code of practice, and pet shop sales, as the solution.

They claim pet shops are an outlet for illegal cruel puppy farms. Evidence indicates the contrary is true. As drafted the legislation will ban pet shops selling puppies and kittens and restrict dog breeding, effectively a pseudo-ban on crossbred dog breeding.

Reducing supply will drive up puppy prices (to an expected $5000-$15,000 in three to five years), waiting times to have that puppy supplied and severely restrict choice of outlet and breeds available.

Walk the Docklands promenades, you will see purebred and crossbred poodles, cavalier king Charles spaniels, whippets, miniature schnauzers, Shih Tzu, etc. We mostly choose dogs less than 10kg to live with us in our apartments.

Government is effectively legislating you must choose a purebred dog, or rescue/adopt. Rescue/adoption, while suitable for some, should not be forced on everyone with its severe restrictions on breed choices available, as well as possible associated temperament and health issues. Crossbred dogs will effectively disappear.

Government, and animal rights groups, claim a public mandate to “stamp out cruel illegal puppy farms”. Their solution includes banning a large sector of the not cruel, and legal dog breeding and supply industry. With little understanding of the industry, and no basis in fact or evidence, the detrimental impacts to the massive pet industry, as well as all Victorians, Docklanders and future pet owners, is expected to be anything from mild to severe.

Docklanders, and all Victorians, should retain their right to source a family pet of their choice, at an affordable price and not have to wait on a wait list for one to three years, to have that puppy supplied. We must fight to protect our rights to pet ownership, and the love and benefits it brings.

Greg Kirby

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