Animal Welfare Act amendments 2018

Page last updated: Friday, 21 April 2023 - 4:25pm

Please note: This content may be out of date and is currently under review.

On 11 October 2017, amendments to the Animal Welfare Act 2002 (the Act) were introduced to State Parliament via the Animal Welfare Amendment Bill 2017 (the Bill). On 20 November 2018, the amended Bill was passed by the State Parliament.

The original Bill was amended in light of the recommendations of the Legislative Council’s Standing Committee on Legislation.

Why was the Act amended?

The Act was amended to provide for the making of regulations giving effect to the Australian Animal Welfare Standards and Guidelines (Standards and Guidelines) for livestock.

The national Standards set mandatory requirements for the humane treatment of animals. The Guidelines advise on recommended practices but are not mandatory.

Western Australia is now the only jurisdiction in Australia that has not yet implemented the Standards and Guidelines for Land Transport of Livestock (2012). The changes to the Act will bring Western Australia into line with other jurisdictions and allow industry to operate across Australia with confidence under consistent and clear legislation.

While Australian farmers have always been aware of their responsibilities for animal health and welfare, consumers are increasingly aware of animal welfare and seeking to understand how farmers are managing their stock consistent with appropriate animal welfare practices.

The implementation of national welfare Standards underpins access to overseas markets and enhances Australia’s reputation as a supplier of high quality animal products.​

Contact information

Rick Bryant
+61 (0)8 9368 3346

Further information on reporting animal cruelty is available.


Rick Bryant