The Companions and Pets Party (CAP) supports the right of people to own companion animals and pets, and to engage in legally sanctioned pursuits with their animals.
CAP will work for you to uphold those rights.
BELIEFS AND POLICIES
CAP will always support your rights to own an animal and pursue your chosen activity with that animal. Whether it be a Pet Dog, Racing Greyhound, Saddle Horse, Thoroughbred Racehorse, Standardbred Harness Horse, Show Jumper, Event Horse, Show Dog, Obedience Dog, Guide Dog, Assistant Dog, Working Dog, Hunting Dog, Show Cat, Pet Cat, Reptile, Bird, Goat, Guinea Pig, Pet Rat, or any other animal, whether it has fur, feathers, scales, or skin or hair, or simply an important member of your family, CAP will support you.
CAP will work for you to uphold your rights to enjoy your animals and have them as part of your life.
CAP will promote legislation to protect your rights as an animal owner – to compete with your animal, and to keep your animal as a pet, to work your animal, and to engage in lawful activities with your animal. (CAP will always insist your animal is properly cared for.)
CAP will promote legislation to protect your rights to breed your animal ethically and responsibly, with informed consideration given to the health and welfare of your animal being paramount. For people who are members of registered animal associations, you must comply with the rules and regulations outlined by your association. People who are not members of such associations, you must comply with council bylaws and/or those determined by state government departments.
Your rights come with your responsibility for the health and welfare of your companion animals or pets. CAP will always insist on the appropriate care for the health and welfare of your animal and compliance with laws governing the keeping of animals.
You have a right as an owner to the quiet enjoyment of your animals without others seeking to deny you that right – we will work vigorously to uphold your rights.
CAP ANIMAL POSITION STATEMENTS
ANIMAL OWNERSHIP VS GUARDIANSHIP
CAP is committed to ensuring people continue to have the right to own animals and will strenuously fight to maintain this right.
Animal extremists seek the removal of “the property status of animals”, instead moving to animal guardianship. This has significant legal ramifications for animal owners and will have significant impact on your right to own an animal, and ultimately the wellbeing of animals.
Animal guardianship will lead to a third person intervening in decisions you make regarding the care and welfare of your animal. Guardianship opens the door for others to legally act on behalf of the animal that you own and potentially taking legal action against you if they deem you are not acting in the best interest of the animal.
Making a humane choice regarding the medical treatment of a seriously injured or terminally ill animal can be challenged by a third person if they believe you have not exhausted all possible medical intervention regardless of the cost or financial strain placed upon you.
This potentially can lead to animal ownership becoming a luxury rather than a protected right.
CAP supports the retaining of property status for animals and unreservedly rejects any attempt to change this status, and will strenuously work to maintain your right to own your animal.
CAP recognises the important role animals play in our life.
At the core of our beliefs and policy, the welfare of animals is paramount. Animal Welfare is always front of mind for CAP and must always be front of mind for those who share their lives with animals.
CAP will insist that everyone who owns an animal or cares for an animal, will first and foremost be responsible for the welfare of that animal, and CAP will actively work towards a society that makes the lives of animals better in every respect.
CAP also recognises that animals are not human beings, and therefore cannot care for themselves, provide shelter for themselves, and, in most circumstances, provide food for themselves. Consequently, CAP understands that animals depend on people to provide for them, and ensure they have their needs met.
“Professional Animal Husbandry”, or the ability to provide all the needs of an animal, is fundamental to ensuring that the welfare of the animal is properly addressed.
COMPANION ANIMALS – PETS
Animal Organisations which represent the many different areas of involvement with animals that people have and enjoy, are the greatest resources for “Professional Animal Husbandry”. These organisations already have “codes of practice” and “codes of conduct” for their members which ensures that animal welfare standards are best practice and meet gold standards of care.
Whether it be a dog, cat, bird, or any other companion animal, CAP will protect the freedom and right of people to continue to enjoy these activities.
CAP will ensure these organisations are recognised for their expertise and, will ensure funding is available to allow them to manage their members, educate their members, provide practical training for their members, and discipline their members if that need ever arises.
There is a significant amount of people in our society that own at least one animal as a pet with most of these being dogs or cats. However, there are many other animals that people keep as pets, and these provide the same enjoyment and interaction.
CAP recognises the important role played by the breeder members (of these professional organisations) in providing these companions to those people and their families.
CAP also recognises the important role these breeders play in sharing their expert knowledge with these owners, knowledge which in most cases is provided throughout the life of that animal, and all done so freely simply because that breeder shares the love of the animal they bred for its whole life.
CAP will provide adequate funding to these breeders (through their organisations) so that this information flow continues to benefit the welfare of the animals.
CAP also acknowledges that there are breeders who do not belong to a recognised Animal Organisation. These breeders will be held to the same standard of care required by those breeders (who are members of an organisation).
CAP will work to ensure, over time, that these breeders are required to join a recognised Animal Organisation to be able to continue breeding. This will result in EVERY breeder meeting the standard of care required to ensure proper levels of animal welfare.
Animals also play an important role in our lives by providing us with food, fibre for clothing, and many other important products which are used in our everyday lives. Those farmers and carers of these animals provide for their families through these activities, and in return provide us with valuable food and nutrition which keeps millions and millions of people alive and healthy.
Farmers are professionals who provide the very best of care for their animals, using expertise often handed down generation after generation. This expertise is supplemented by university study which many young farmers undertake. These young farmers have learned the most modern and up to date skills on farming techniques, including best practice on animal husbandry.
This expertise and continued study, allows farmers best practice opportunities to provide the very best in animal welfare outcomes for the animals they breed and raise. In return they continue to provide high quality food at affordable prices to allow people world-wide to eat products that are healthy, high in nutritional value, enjoyable, and importantly provide the quality protein that only comes from meat and meat products.
CAP recognises the importance of farmers and will promote legislation to protect farming by enshrining the rights to farm animals into this legislation.
CAP recognises the advancements in farming practices and animal husbandry, and acknowledges concerns held by some people surrounding intensive farming arrangements.
CAP would prefer that all farming practices allow animals full access to natural grazing facilities.
But CAP also recognises that feeding growing populations is challenging, and Australia must play its part in meeting these needs.
For too long, the children and adults in so many countries have endured poverty and famines, where these people go without food on a daily basis, and as far as CAP is concerned this is totally unacceptable. Australia, whilst a very lucky country, is not immune from those who go hungry and struggle to put food on their table.
CAP is a compassionate party – we have compassion for animals and we have compassion for people.
We will work for a better world, where animal welfare is front of mind, but where we recognise all competing forces and help solve problems by working with farmers to ensure they are supported in their mission to supply quality food in a responsible manner.
By doing this, we will help ALL people around the world have access to sufficient and affordable food.
THOROUGHBRED RACING, GREYHOUND RACING AND HARNESS RACING
CAP supports racing for all three codes – These industries support millions of jobs in Australia, provide enormous economic benefits to local communities and provide much needed revenue for Governments.
In addition it is so important to note that these industries provide an immeasurable amount of enjoyment, not only for those involved, but to hundreds of thousands of adults and children throughout Australia.
The reason CAP supports all three codes, is because CAP is impressed by the enormous amount of work the governing bodies do in setting “world class standards” for the welfare of the animals which are a vital part of their industries. However, CAP will always insist that the governing bodies of racing continue to engage with CAP to ensure the highest animal welfare standards are maintained, and where improvements can be made, are made.
CAP membership comprises made up by people with years of experience in animal husbandry, and because of this, we understand how well the racing animal is cared for, and how hard the participants work at providing for the welfare of those animals.
CAP recognises the importance of racing and will promote legislation to protect racing by enshrining the right to race animals into this legislation.
Fishing is one of the largest recreational activities in Australia. Many families enjoy the social time that they have together when partaking in this activity.
CAP recognizes the importance of recreational fishing to the economy and the social fabric of the community. Many families enjoy a quiet day fishing, providing food for a meal or just catching a fish and returning it to the water, and CAP wants to ensure families continue to have this opportunity to spend quality time together.
CAP will support fishing as a recreational activity, and as an important source of food for the population. CAP will promote legislation to ensure both can proceed in a responsible and sustainable manner and will promote legislation to enshrine these rights into this legislation.
CONTINUED SUPPORT TO OWN ANIMALS
CAP is committed to ensuring people can enjoy the numerous benefits that flow from owning an animal.
Not only does this ownership provide much needed companionship for families, the elderly, and company for the lonely, animal ownership is invaluable for the young – teaching them a sense of responsibility, providing life skills in animal husbandry, and helping to give them life lessons in love, loss, and a sense of belonging.
CAP will work to ensure animal ownership is valued in the community, and work at ensuring animal ownership remains affordable for all families.
In recognition of the important role animals play in family life, and the fact that they are considered “part of the family”, CAP will seek to have pet food (for pets kept in a family environment) included as an item not subject to GST.
This will reduce the cost to families of keeping a pet, which is one of the main concerns expressed by pet owners.
CAP will also work to ensure animals are more widely accepted throughout the community. Too often pet owners express concerns that their pets are not welcome in various businesses. CAP will work to change community attitudes to ensure pets are more widely accepted.
CAP will also work to encourage local councils to improve pet walking and exercise facilities, to make these safer, and more stimulating for both pets and owners. This will encourage owners to increase their levels of exercise, at the same time providing a valuable level of stimulation for the pet, which is expected to reduce anxiety levels in pets.
Animal ownership provides the best outcomes for animal welfare – without people, animals would lack for many things in their life, and this should never be forgotten. People have, since the beginning of time, shared their lives with animals, for the benefit of both.
Where would we be without animals in our lives?