Our role

The state and territory member Societies provide services to animals in need through their shelters and inspectorates. In the national office, RSPCA Australia works to influence animal welfare policy, practice and legislation across the country
Go to Our role

Key issues

The RSPCA advocates for the welfare of animals across a number of industries, issues and platforms. Help from our supporters is important to progress change. Working together is key.
Go to Key issues
take action live sheep export alternate
Priority issue
We are closer than ever to finally…
Live sheep export

Support us

Whether you're an individual or a business, there are multiple ways you can support the RSPCA
Go to Support us
An animal in the RSPCA care being cared for by an RSPCA vet
Donate now to support your local RSPCA and make a difference to animal welfare across Australia


The RSPCA is an independent, community-based charity providing animal care and protection services across the country.
Go to About
about us national statistics
Read our National Statistics
Compiled on a national basis by RSPCA…
Annual statistics


By choosing adoption, you’ll not only have the chance to make a friend for life, but you’ll be giving an animal a second chance and helping support the RSPCA.
Go to Adopt
adopt a pet logo
Visit the Adopt A Pet website
Make a difference to a pet’s life today.
Search Adoptapet

27 October 2011

Primary Industries Ministers will meet in Melbourne tomorrow to consider removing exemptions that currently allow the slaughter of fully conscious animals to meet a small demand for religious slaughter in Australia.

“Contrary to recent claims, stunning is mandatory in Australia. Australian law requires all animals to be stunned unconscious before slaughter and this is the case for 99% of animals killed in Australia every year,” said RSPCA Australia Scientific Officer Melina Tensen.

“That’s because our law recognises that cutting the throat of a conscious animal is cruel and results in a painful, distressing and prolonged death. All available scientific evidence backs this up.

“There are a small number of abattoirs however (in Victoria, South Australia and New South Wales) that have obtained exemptions to this law, allowing them to kill animals (mostly sheep) without stunning them. This satisfies a small demand for Kosher and some Halal meat.

“The slaughter of conscious animals is completely unnecessary in Australia. Stunning is widely accepted by Islamic authorities and Jewish authorities accept the stunning of cattle.

“There is no reason why 250,000 sheep every year should continue to suffer through the pain and distress of dying while fully conscious when 99% of their counterparts are shielded from this horror.

“Primary industries and agriculture ministers from around the country will meet tomorrow to consider removing these exemptions.

“Our information is that there is widespread support within most states to remove all religious slaughter exemptions however pressure from New South Wales and Victoria could force a decision to allow un-stunned slaughter to continue.

“The RSPCA is appealing to those two states to look at the science, consider the widespread acceptance of stunning by religious authorities and represent the views of Australians who now, after witnessing the reality of un-stunned slaughter, have overwhelmingly rejected it.”


subscribe box

Stay informed on big issues and how you can help improve animal welfare across Australia.

Subscribe today and we’ll keep you updated on all the latest campaigns, events and news.