The week in animal welfare: Volume #6

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Make yourself a cup of tea, get comfortable and have a click through the latest stories on animal welfare.

Irish terriers, the little red dogs that went to war:  As our country commemorated Anzac Day this week, our thoughts were also with the animals that have risked and lost their lives in conflict. This is a fascinating story about the dogs used as sentries, messengers and guard dogs during World War I.

Free-range eggs: New national labelling standard: A new national free-range information standard has now been released. If you’re a long time RSPCA supporter, you probably wrote to your State Consumer Affairs Minister in 2016 to ask for a definition of free- range that meant good welfare. While it’s positive news that producers are now required to display their farm’s stocking density on their labels, it is disappointing that there’s no clarity as to what ‘meaningful and regular access to the outdoors’ actually means for hens.

Cage fight threatens to hijack egg farmer’s welfare efforts:  This article on the review of the poultry welfare standards and the RSPCA’s campaign to end the battery cage leans in favour of cage egg farmers that do not want to transition to cage-free production systems.  We encourage you to have a read and make up your own mind on whether you want eggs to be produced in battery cages.

Defending the Defenceless:  RSPCA Inspectors often deal with cases where the penalties handed out to animal welfare offenders seem inadequate. This post from RSPCA Queensland tells the sad story of Chester, an old and very unwell King Charles Cavalier that was surrendered to the pound because his owner did not want to pay for humane euthanasia.  

28 very good dogs who went to the March for Science:  It’s incredibly important to ensure our animal welfare standards and policies are based on credible scientific evidence, which is why we’re so pleased to see how many canines stood up for science last weekend too. Plus, the pictures are cute and the placards are very punny.