RSPCA Australia knowledgebase RSS

Can layer hen mortality, pests, parasites, disease and predation be managed in non-cage systems?

Fri, 2017-11-24 15:36
Mortality The main welfare risks in cage-free systems are the transmission of infectious diseases and severe feather pecking, both of which can lead to mortality. Severe feather pecking is a significant welfare problem where birds vigorously peck...

Why are cattle dehorned and is it painful?

Thu, 2017-11-16 15:17
Dehorning is the removal of a cow or calf's horn in order to reduce the incidence of bruising and potential injury to animals or people. When the procedure is carried out on calves under 2 months of age, before the horns have attached to the skull,...

Is dehorning of cattle legal?

Thu, 2017-11-16 15:06
State Yes/No name of relevant act/special conditions and requirements ACT Yes No expressed prohibition of dehorning cattle in ACT legislation, including the Animal Welfare Act 1992 (ACT)...

Will closed circuit television help improve the welfare of farm animals?

Tue, 2017-11-14 15:58
At abattoirs, saleyards and other commercial facilities where large numbers of animals are handled on a daily basis, there is the potential for the welfare of the animals to be forgotten in an effort to get the job done as quickly as possible. ...

What is the RSPCA position on pigeon racing?

Thu, 2017-11-09 14:45
Pigeon racing poses many welfare risks. Racing pigeons may be susceptible to predator attack from birds of prey or other animals during the race. The races usually cover very large distances (several hundred kilometres) which places high physical...

Should elephants be kept in zoos?

Wed, 2017-11-08 12:26
In general, the RSPCA is not opposed to the keeping of animals in government-endorsed zoos where zoos are able to meet the behavioural, social and physiological needs of their animals, have documented animal management plans, minimum enforceable...

What does the RSPCA think about the trapping of wild dogs?

Tue, 2017-11-07 20:33
Wild dogs, (include feral cross-breed dogs, dingoes and hybrids of the two) can cause substantial suffering to livestock when they kill or injure sheep, calves or other young animals. They are the subject of a number of control programs across...

What is pigeon rotavirus and what should be done to stop it spreading?

Tue, 2017-11-07 17:44
Pigeon rotavirus causes a highly infectious and fatal disease. The virus was first detected in racing pigeons in Western Australia a year ago and has now spread to the eastern states causing significant suffering and killing thousands of racing...

What is the most humane way to kill pest rats and mice?

Wed, 2017-11-01 11:04
There are a range of different poisons and traps used in Australia for controlling rats and mice. The RSPCA is concerned that many of these methods are inhumane and involve a slow and painful death. The following information provides advice on how...

Do horses and cattle enjoy participating in rodeos?

Mon, 2017-10-30 09:57
Arguments put forward in support of the use of horses, bulls, steers and calves in rodeos tend to focus on the fact that these events have been part of country town life for many years, that they are good for the local community and that the...

What is the RSPCA position on whips in Thoroughbred racing?

Thu, 2017-10-26 10:45
The RSPCA is opposed to the use of whips for the purpose of enhancing performance in racing due to the pain and distress they inflict on horses. The RSPCA supports the introduction of hands-and-heels racing where whips are carried for safety...

What is horse 'wastage' in the racehorse industry?

Wed, 2017-10-25 16:48
Wastage refers to the number of horses that are ‘lost’ from the racing industry. Wastage can occur at any stage of the horse’s life, including prior to racing. In 2002 it was estimated that Australia had 1.2 million horses including...

What are the animal welfare issues associated with Thoroughbred racing in Australia?

Wed, 2017-10-25 14:00
There are a number of significant problems associated with the horse racing industry that need to be resolved in order to protect the welfare of racehorses. These include: Significant overbreeding and oversupply of racehorses To increase the...

Are there animal welfare advantages to on-farm mobile slaughtering units or micro abattoirs?

Fri, 2017-10-20 11:40
The concept of a mobile slaughtering unit arose from the need to slaughter animals on farm for personal consumption. A mobile slaughtering unit drives onto the property where the animal is killed, the carcass is then processed inside the unit and...

Do padded whips cause pain to horses?

Thu, 2017-10-12 10:23
Since 2009, all jockeys in Thoroughbred racing in Australia have been required to use a whip which is padded at the end, replacing conventional whips which have no padding, This change was introduced in response to concerns raised about the pain...

How do I tell if my dog is overweight?

Wed, 2017-10-04 10:16
Obesity is a common health problems in Australian dogs. If not addressed early on obesity can lead to other serious health complications such as heart failure and diabetes. Obesity can also exacerbate other conditions such as osteoarthritis. You...

What is the RSPCA’s view on the release of Cyprinid herpesvirus to kill carp?

Tue, 2017-10-03 16:21
In late 2016, the Australian Government commissioned a two-year research and planning process to determine the feasibility of using a virus (known as Cyprinid herpesvirus 3 or CyHV-3) to control invasive European carp (Cyprinus carpio) in Australia...

Why is my cat urinating inappropriately?

Mon, 2017-09-18 09:47
Feline inappropriate urination (urinating in the wrong place) is a common issue for cat owners. It often involves the cat urinating outside their litter box in an inappropriate area or on an inappropriate object. The causes are generally medical or...

What should I feed my dog?

Fri, 2017-09-08 15:25
Domesticated dogs are largely carnivores that eat some omnivorous foods. Wild dogs eat a variety of food which consists mainly of prey animals. Prey animals are composed of raw meat, raw bones, organs, other tissue and digested vegetable matter....

What is RSPCA’s vision for sustainable farm animal production?

Mon, 2017-08-28 15:13
In the debate about feeding a growing world population and in which livestock industries often see an opportunity to increase the scale or the intensity of their operations, rarely is consideration given to the effect this might have on farm animal...

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