Animal Care

Humane Killing and Slaughter of Animals

The killing of an animal has at all times to be carried out in compliance with the subject Act as well as in a humane way and in such a manner that the animal is spared any avoidable pain, suffering, injury, fear, or distress.

Without prejudice to the prohibition of killing animals, the deliberate killing of vertebrates is only allowed to be performed by veterinarians or trained and registered, certified, or licensed veterinary assistants under the supervision of a veterinarian. This is not applicable to

  • Professionally skilled killing of farmed or game animals
  • Emergency killing
  • Professional ‘pest’ control work

It is prohibited to kill or slaughter any animal without prior and effective anaesthetization or stunning before death supervenes without the recovery of consciousness (for example, through exsanguination in commercial slaughter); unless animals are killed instantaneously. In cases where stunning or anaesthetization do not produce immediate unconsciousness, the induction of unconsciousness must be completely non-aversive, and not cause any pain, suffering, injury, fear, or distress. When stunning is used to induce unconsciousness before slaughter, the time between stunning and exsanguinations must be kept as short as possible to prevent animals from recovering from the stunning before exsanguination.

If in the case of an emergency killing it is not possible to render prior effective anaesthetization or stunning to the animal, killing or slaughter shall be performed in such a manner that minimizes any pain, suffering, injury, fear, or distress.

An animal’s life shall not be terminated

  • By drowning or any other method of suffocation;
  • By using any poisonous substance or drug, except when administered by a veterinarian or a certified, licensed or registered veterinary assistant under the supervision of a veterinarian;
  • Using any percussion instrument which does not produce the effect required, or by electrocution, unless preceded by immediate induction of loss of consciousness.

In all cases, the person responsible for terminating the animal’s life shall ensure that the animal is dead before the carcass is manipulated, disposed of, or used in any way (such as butchering or skinning).

  • Only persons who have the necessary professional, technical, and personal knowledge and skills (and have received appropriate training) shall perform tasks connected to the killing/slaughter process: animal unloading and movement; accommodation and care of the animal in the lairage and slaughterhouse; and the restraint, stunning and anaesthetization as well as the humane killing, slaughtering and exsanguination of the animal. The Competent Authority shall establish a system of certification to enable personnel to demonstrate compliance with these requirements.
  • All slaughterhouses and their installations, equipment, and instruments must be designed, constructed, maintained, and operated in a way that the well-being of the animal is safeguarded and any pain, injury, suffering, fear, or distress avoided as far as possible. All businesses operating and managing slaughterhouses shall be authorized.
  • No installations, equipment, instruments, and substances/preparations for the stunning, killing, or restraint of animals shall be used commercially without first obtaining a license from the Competent Authority.
  • The Competent Authority may wish to add a provision here to set out any desired restrictions or conditions concerning home killing/slaughter for personal consumption. If this is the case, then the need to comply with general conditions for humane killing/slaughter needs to be stipulated, including the requirement to spare the animal avoidable pain, distress, or suffering during the process.

In addition, Authorisation of the Minister responsible, the Ministry or the Competent Authority to adopt any regulations [and establish, as appropriate, ‘Welfare Codes’, standards and guidance] in this context.

President

The divine scriptures are God’s beacons to the world. Surely God offered His trust to the heavens and the earth, and the hills, but they shrank from bearing it and were afraid of it. And man undertook it.
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