Conservative Party Conference 2019: Protecting animal welfare

Summary: We are announcing a package of measures to protect animals in our homes, farms and in the
wild.

  • There is no place in this country for animal cruelty cruelty, but unfortunately many animals are still mistreated.
  • We have put together a package of measures which protect animals in our homes, in agriculture, and in the wild – from banning keeping primates as pets to limiting the distance animals can be moved for slaughter.
  • These policies reflect the deep affection British people have for animals and wildlife. As we leave the EU, we will deliver a Green Brexit, not only maintaining but enhancing animal welfare standards, placing us in a strong position to lead the world on animal welfare issues.

Our solution

  • Banning pet primates. We will consult on steps to ban the trade in pet primates and phase out the ownership of pet primates, ensuring any primates currently kept as pets will be safely rehoused.
  • Extending cat microchipping. We will bring forward a consultation to introduce the same safety measures for cats as already apply to dogs, giving cat owners peace of mind and increasing the measures we have to tackle cat theft.
  • Banning live exports for slaughter or fattening. We will consult on restricting live animals journeys, requiring approval for longer journeys and bringing forward welfare conditions for long journeys when they are necessary.
  • Controlling trade in hunting trophies. We will consult on further restrictions to the import and export of hunting trophies into and from the UK.

Conservative record

  • Legislating to increase the maximum sentence for animal abusers. The Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Bill will mean animal abusers could face up to five years in prison, a significant increase from the current maximum sentence of six months and be one of the toughest punishments for animal abusers in Europe.

Q: What difference will this make?
We are announcing a significant step forward in protecting pets in our homes, in agriculture and in the wild. As this will affect farmers, businesses, and individuals, it is important that we consult on the technical detail before bringing forward legislation.