RSPCA Australia knowledgebase RSS (Farm animals)
What role does the RSPCA play in Australian agriculture and livestock production?
What role does the RSPCA play in Australian agriculture and livestock production? As Australia’s largest and most trusted animal welfare organisation, the RSPCA is committed to improving and promoting better welfare for farm animals throughout...
What are the animal welfare issues relating to meat chicken production?
Chickens that are grown for meat production (also called broiler chickens) are genetically very different from layer hens (which are bred to produce eggs). Meat chickens have been selectively bred over many generations to grow and gain weight very...
How are animals killed for food?
In Australia, the killing of animals for food, fibre and other animal products (referred to as ‘slaughter’) is underpinned by the Australian standard for the hygienic production and transport of meat and meat products for human consumption. The...
What is the standard of animal welfare at Australian abattoirs?
In Australia, the killing of animals for food, fibre and other animal products (referred to as ‘slaughter’) is underpinned by minimal provisions in the Australian standard for the hygienic production and transport of meat and meat products for...
Why are cattle dehorned and is it painful?
Dehorning is the removal of a cow or calf's horn in order to reduce the incidence of bruising and potential injury to animals or people. When carried out on calves under 2 months of age, before the horns have attached to the skull, the procedure is...
Are there animal welfare advantages to on-farm mobile slaughtering units or micro abattoirs?
The concept of a mobile slaughtering unit arose from the need to slaughter animals on farm for personal consumption. A mobile slaughtering unit drives onto the property where the animal is killed, the carcass is then processed inside the unit and...
How are beef cattle reared?
Beef cattle are reared outdoors in all Australian states and territories. Southern areas with good pasture have herds with a high density of stock and northern areas, with less feed, have herds with a low density of stock. Queensland and New South...
What is flystrike and what is the RSPCA’s view on mulesing and flystrike prevention in sheep?
Mulesing was developed in 1929 and, because it is highly effective in preventing flystrike, it has been a routine surgical husbandry procedure for the majority of sheep in Australia to this day. Sheep, especially Merinos, have woolly wrinkles and...
What is humane food?
The RSPCA believes you can eat meat or eggs and still care about the welfare of the animals that provide it. These animals are living, feeling creatures, capable of experiencing fear, pain and distress. The RSPCA believes all animals should be...
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