Veterinary animal welfare information

Veterinarians are a trusted source of information for animal owners and play an important role in helping to promote good animal welfare in NSW. There are many resources available that veterinarians can use to assist their clients to implement good animal welfare practices.

For regular updates and news on animal welfare in NSW you can join the mailing list to receive the NSW Government’s Chief Animal Welfare Officer (CAWO) eNewsletters.

Companion animals – dogs and cats

Puppy breeders - do you follow the NSW breeding code?Do you have clients that breed dogs or cats? Research has shown that dog and cat breeders seek advice from their vet on animal welfare issues, and many breeders are unsure where else to look for information.

The welfare of dogs and cats in NSW is protected by legislation and supporting Codes and Standards. The NSW Breeding Code of Practice (the Code) applies to everyone that breeds dogs or cats in NSW for fee or reward. Additional information to help your clients understand how to protect animal welfare and comply with the requirements can be found here, including advertising rules and identification numbers, microchipping, registration and transfer of ownership.

Buying or adopting a cat or dog

There is information on the DPI website for anyone thinking of Buying or adopting a cat or dog, including top tips, questions to asking before making a purchase and how to look out for a puppy factory or scam. This handy Checklist when purchasing a puppy or kitten, helps buyers ensure they have considered all the aspects involved before purchasing their new pet.

The NSW Pet Registry, managed by the Office of Local Government, is a database of microchipped and registered cats and dogs that live in NSW. More information for vets on this website is available here. The Registry is part of the NSW Government’s commitment to strengthen animal welfare standards and promote responsible pet ownership across the State.


SheepThe welfare of livestock animals in NSW is protected by legislation and supporting Codes and Standards. The details can be found on the NSW DPI Animal Welfare webpages with specific information for cattle, sheep & goats, pigs, poultry and other species. Veterinarians play an important role in identifying welfare risks or issues, and working with producers to help improve animal welfare in stock animals.

Stock Welfare Panels (SWP)

Stock Welfare Panels can be established by NSW DPI when animals are identified to be at significant risk. Stock welfare panels seek to improve the animal welfare outcomes for the stock through a structured process, and involve a panel of experts with representatives from an enforcement agency, Local Land Services (LLS), NSW DPI, and usually a NSW Farmers’ representative. It is a requirement that at least one member of a SWP be a veterinarian.

To learn more about the stock welfare in NSW you can find information here. There is also a video that explains the Stock Welfare Panel process.


More information to come.

Other useful links