Code of Welfare for Goats issued
22 March 2012
All goat owners will be interested in the minimum standards of care and recommended best practices outlined in a new code of welfare issued today by the Minister for Primary Industries, David Carter.
The Animal Welfare (Goats) Code of Welfare 2012, which has been developed by the National Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (NAWAC), establishes how the welfare of goats is properly and best attended to, and encourages all those responsible to adopt best practices of husbandry, care and handling.
NAWAC Chairman John Hellström says “Goats are kept in a variety of situations in New Zealand, from being farmed for milk, meat and fibre, for controlling weeds, kept for display in safari parks, or as pets. There is an onus on all owners and people in charge to look after them appropriately, regardless of how or why they are kept”.
“The code offers practical information and 19 minimum standards relating to all aspects of goat ownership and care, including water, food and shelter, breeding, and handling.”
“It includes strict requirements around how goats need to be tethered, the type of equipment to be used, and the provision of food, water and shelter whilst on the tether. In addition, tethered goats must be trained to the conditions and kept under close supervision.”
The code was originally developed by an industry-convened writing group, with input from the dairy, fibre and meat goat sectors, veterinarians and animal welfare representatives. It does not apply to goats that are “wild animals” under the Wild Animal Control Act, but it does apply to captured feral goats.
Copies of the code and the explanatory report that accompanies it are available online at http://www.biosecurity.govt.nz/regs/animal-welfare or by request from email@example.com.
Mike Bodnar, Senior Communications Adviser
Telephone: 04-894 3411