New Zealand’s Animal Welfare Laws Strengthened; Horses Offered Additional Protection

New Zealand has passed new regulations in an effort to strengthen the country’s animal welfare system. These regulations cover a variety of animals and procedures, as well as denote who can perform surgical procedures and under what circumstances.

Equine castrations may only be done by a veterinarian or a veterinary student under direct supervision of a vet, and the horse must be given pain medication. Failure to comply can result in fines up to $5,000.

Striking a horse on its head is a new offense that carries a fine of up to $1,500. Failure to provide a horse that is tied with food, water, shade and shelter from extreme weather conditions can carry a fine of up to $900. Any equipment that injures the horse, or prevents it from eating or drinking, is now also a punishable offense.

These regulations become law in August, but will not be enforced until May 9, 2021. Some offenses carry fines and possible convictions. In instances where the horses are severely impacted, prosecution would fall under the Animal Welfare Act, which carries more substantial penalties.

Read more at HorseTalk.

Find the Care and Procedures Regulations here.

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