The ISPCA is calling on the Department of Education to introduce a module on animal welfare and responsible pet ownership into the National School curriculum. Responsible pet ownership modules were introduced into many Educate Together schools over two years ago. Educate Together lesson plans, a resource to assist teachers in educating students about animal welfare, pet care, commitment and responsibility is available here
In 2016, the ISPCA received over 16,000 calls to our National Animal Cruelty Helpline, resulting in over 3,200 investigations by our team of Inspectors who are Authorised Officers under the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013. Our Inspectors seized over 1000 animals and instigated over 30 prosecutions for animal welfare offences. Although we see deliberate acts of cruelty or neglect, the vast majority of animal welfare cases are the result of a lack of understanding of the welfare needs of animals. All animal owners have a legal responsibility under the Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013 to provide for the needs of their animals.
Including animal welfare and responsible pet ownership on the school curriculum will play an important role in reducing the need for intervention and will help to protect the welfare of tens of thousands of animals in the future.