SPCA New Zealand

SPCA frustrated to see more newborn puppies subject to unlawful tail docking

11 February 2021
SPCA frustrated to see more newborn puppies subject to unlawful tail docking

Illegally removing the tails from new-born puppies has seen SPCA prosecute a Christchurch man.

The defendant was sentenced yesterday in the Christchurch District Court to a fine of $500.00 and ordered to pay legal costs of $200.00, after pleading guilty to the charge.

SPCA was alerted to a Facebook post in which the seller listed a number of Rottweiler puppies with docked tails. When Inspectors visited the owner’s property, they discovered four 8-week-old Rottweiler puppies and one 11-week-old puppy, all with docked tails.

When interviewed, the defendant admitted he carried out the illegal practice when they were two-days old. He used rubber string and no pain relief, despite him thinking it might be painful for them. He also stated he had always seen Rottweiler’s with docked tails.

SPCA Chief Executive Andrea Midgen says it is hugely concerning to see tail docking still being practiced and is an irresponsible form of changing an animal for cosmetic human preferences.

“Tail docking regulations came into effect two years ago, for good reason. To know people are still ignorantly carrying out this procedure with make-shift materials at home is unacceptable. Tail docking should only be carried out by a vet for medical reasons.”

“We are seeing this far too often and - we implore people to report anyone who they suspect is performing this illegal practice on innocent animals.” Ms Midgen says.

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