SPCA In Action
SPCA Prosecution Powers
Under the Animal Welfare Act 1999 the SPCA has the power to protect all animals from abuse, neglect, and abandonment.
We are often asked why we prosecute some people and not others. The answer is that wherever possible we offer advice and assistance to improve animal welfare, and this sometimes means giving people time to make improvements.
But this is not always possible or appropriate. For example, if there has been a deliberate act of violence against an animal, when people won’t accept assistance, or in extreme cases of neglect.
Under these kinds of circumstances our Inspector will consider prosecution under the Animal Welfare Act 1999. This is the law that defines the responsibilities of owning and caring for animals. Under the Act, the SPCA has the power to protect all animals from abuse, neglect, and abandonment.
SPCA Nelson’ Inspectors are a member of a national team that is responsible for making sure people follow that law. If you would like to read more about the Act, please visit the MAF website.