Regulation of the Treatment of Companion Animals
This chapter begins with a consideration of the meaning of 'companion animal'. The chapter then considers the significance of companion animals as reflected in law, distinguishing between instrumental and non-instrumental value. The next section addresses the two major qualifications imposed on the instrumental, personal property rights enjoyed by companion animal owners - the prohibition against cruelty and the duty to meet basic welfare needs. These legal obligations are potentially quite stringent, although their application in practice is complicated by resource constraints, regulatory inconsistencies and limited judicial recognition of the significance of harm done to animals. The last part of this chapter considers 'animal management', an area traditionally distinguished from issues of animal welfare, but which is more appropriately understood as an important component of an enlarged conception of the law of animal welfare. How best to address the treatment of dangerous dogs, the surrender and abandonment of companion animals and companion animal overpopulation has so far proven to be difficult for regulators to satisfactorily resolve.
Animal Law in Australia and New Zealand
Law and Society