Animal Welfare

Sustainable New Zealand will:

  • Appoint an independent Commissioner for Animals as an advocate for the welfare of all animals, including farm, companion and wild animals.
  • Abolish all factory farming in New Zealand by 1 January 2025, including farrowing crates, fattening pens and all hen cages.
  • Make it mandatory for cameras to be installed in slaughterhouses and on the commercial fishing fleet and provide funding for monitoring the cameras.
  • Implement full protection for Māui and Hector’s dolphins throughout their ranges.
  • Provide adequate shelter for farmed animals, taking account of New Zealand’s weather extremes and develop and enforce high standards for transporting animals to ensure that animal trauma is reduced. 
  • Develop sentencing guidelines for animal cruelty cases, educate the judiciary about the links between animal cruelty and other forms of violence, and treat cruelty to animals as an aggravating factor under the Sentencing Act 2002.
  • Recognise the link between animal cruelty, child abuse and domestic violence as a community concern; a firm commitment by the Government to end all three forms of violence; include animals as “protected persons” under the Domestic Violence Act 1995.
  • Enshrine in the Animal Welfare Act 1999 legal personhood for animals. The Animal Welfare Act now includes a declaration recognising that animals are sentient beings. However, this cannot be enforced without legal personality for animals. (At present, under our law, companies — which are inanimate and non-living — are recognised as legal persons, but animals are not.)
  • Prohibit the sale, possession or use of devices that inflict pain and suffering on animals, including electric shock collars, gin traps and other leg-hold devices, and electronic prodders. 
  • Ban the live export of animals.
  • Ban rodeos in New Zealand.
  • Ban greyhound racing.
  • Ban the Forced Swim Test immediately and work towards New Zealand becoming the first country in the world to ban all testing on animals by 1 January 2022.
  • Fund scientific research into new predator control methods.
  • Ban the surgical mutilation of animals, including de-barking, de-beaking and de-clawing.
  • Ban the permanent chaining of dogs and the permanent tethering of goats.
  • Make microchipping of cats and dogs free and universal.
  • Pass stringent laws restricting the use of animals in entertainment, including horse racing, marine parks, animals in film and television, and circuses.
  • Ban the production, import and sale of foie gras.

Read about more of our policies and find out how you can get involved.