Backyard Prisoner - Unchain Me

In NSW Australia, a dog or horse and other animals are allowed to be chained or tethered indefinitely. The Animal welfare Acts 9 & 10 state that animals need "reasonable exercise" however, if an animal is tied up continously and is reported to the RSPCA, their answer will be:

 An animal is allowed to be tied up as long as it has one hour off in 24 hours!

So that means continously because:

It is extremely difficult to prove that the animal is taken off and exercised for that one hour in those 24 hours, even if all the neighbours were to rally together and all give witness statements, the RSPCA will tell you that it has to be proven with 24 hour video footage for at least 3 days, and then it has to be taken to court to be decided what and if the owner will be prosecuted.

How to get continuous over 24 hour video footage is very difficult and not legal if the camera is placed on the perpetrators property. 

Many of these ropes and chains are short and not suitable and even if they were on a long run, it is still inhumane to keep an animal tied up for more than 24 hours.

These laws leave the animal powerless and nothing more than a backyard prisoner. 

Backyard prisoners are left in terrible conditions completely deprived of love, socialisation, any kind of normal life, freedom to run and play. Sometimes they lack even a basic shelter and a soft place to lay, they also have to endure heat waves, freezing weather, torrential rain, hail and floods. And they have no where to run and hide in electrical storms. Some animals may never even have the pleasure of laying in the sunshine as they may be tied up in cold damp shaded areas. Often they can go without food and water.

If an animal lacks a kennel or does not have access to any water, the owner will only be given a warning by the RSPCA. But often the RSPCA will not follow up regularly to check on the situation and it is left to a member of the public to get the dog out of the dangerous situation putting their own safety at risk. 

These animals are subjected to living in their own feces and can be exposed to flies which can lay maggots in their skin, they are also often riddled with fleas and worms and ticks.

Any person who ties their animal up 24/7 continously is not going to give it the propper care that it needs because only a mug can do such a thing.

We need your support to change these laws that have not been amended since 1979.

Together the Department of Primary Industries and the RSPCA have the powers to amend these laws and to make them humane, but they continue to allow these animals to suffer.

CCAS - Concerned Citizens for Animal Safety

Backyard Prisoners...

Unchain Me 

Petition to amend the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act NSW (1979)

To the Honourable the Speaker and Members of the Legislative Assembly of New South Wales.

The Petition of the residents of the State of New South Wales brings to the attention of the House that the current laws in regards to the welfare of animals do not provide adequate protection from the pain and suffering caused by constraint and inadequate exercise. In particular the petitioners are concerned that Sections 9 & 10 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act NSW (1979) allow for animals to be tethered, chained or confined for periods of up to 24 hours each day without release or exercise. 


Due to the lack of any legislated minimum periods for release from constraint, animals can lawfully be chained or tethered for all but a few minutes each day. This enables owners to treat their animals as ‘backyard prisoners’ where, for example,  dogs can spend their entire lives on chains or horses on tethers with minimal exercise or freedom of movement.

The undersigned petitioners therefore ask the Legislative Assembly to amend Sections 9 and 10 of the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act NSW (1979) to provide for a minimum of 12 hours release from constraint and tethering in each twenty-four hour period to allow for adequate exercise and freedom of movement.

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