Cruel and illegal puppy and kitten breeders will be shut down and forced out of business under tough new laws the Victorian Coalition Government has introduced to Parliament.
Liberal candidate for Ripon, Louise Staley, said anyone found guilty of animal cruelty offences would be banned from owning, managing or registering a domestic animal business under the Coalition's strict new laws.
"Pet shops will now also be forced to keep detailed records on the source of every single puppy and kitten they offer for sale," Ms Staley said.
Ms Staley said and the RSPCA had also gained new powers, effective immediately, that would help RSPCA authorised officers to raid and shut down illegal breeding operations.
"The Coalition Government is continuing to take strong action to smash cruel and illegal puppy farms after Daniel Andrews and Labor failed to act for 11 years," Ms Staley said.
"Under the Coalition Government's tough new laws, councils will be able to shut down and refuse future registration of any domestic animal business owned, managed or registered by a person found guilty of animal cruelty in the past decade.
"Pet shops must also keep detailed records on every puppy and kitten they have for sale, so each animal can be traced back to its breeder. The records can be used as evidence, where necessary, to prosecute illegal breeding operations.
"In addition to these legislative changes, the Coalition Government has authorised significantly greater powers for the RSPCA to help its officers raid and shut down cruel and illegal breeding businesses.
"These changes mean every pet and working dog will have the great start to life my dog Daisy had."
Ms Staley said Daniel Andrews and the previous Labor government did absolutely nothing to advance animal welfare in 11 years, ignoring calls from the community to take action.
"For example, Daniel Andrews and Labor allowed fines for illegal puppy farms to stay at just $1,195.
"It took a Coalition Government to significantly increase penalties in 2011, with fines for this serious offence now up to $88,566," Ms Staley said.
Since 2011 the Victorian Coalition Government has:
Introduced the toughest breeding code in Australia, with more than 100 prescriptions breeders must follow such as breeding limits and retirement plans for breeding animals, as well as mandatory vet checks and specific requirements for housing, nutrition, and staffing ratios.
Imposed explicit bans on blunt force trauma as a method of euthanasia and the use of wire floor cages at breeding businesses.
Increased fines for aggravated cruelty to up to $72,624 or two years jail for individuals, and introduced court-imposed penalties where people can be banned for up to 10 years from working with or owning animals if convicted of aggravated cruelty, running an unregistered business or non-compliance with the mandatory breeding code.
Introduced the $1.6 million Animal Welfare Fund, assisting not-for-profit groups to rescue and rehome abandoned animals.
Revoked the "28 day" rule, meaning shelters are no longer forced to euthanise animals not claimed within 28 days.