Written Answer by Ministry of National Development on whether the Ministry will consider increasing the period a person is disqualified from owning any animal or any class of animals from the current max of 12 months under the Animals and Birds Act
Nov 2, 2021
Mr Louis Ng Kok Kwang: To ask the Minister for National Development (a) whether the Ministry will consider increasing the period a person is disqualified from owning any animal or any class of animals from the current maximum of 12 months under Section 43B of the Animals and Birds Act; (b) if not, why not; and (c) if so, whether the Ministry will consult with stakeholders and the general public in considering the extent of the increase.
We take a serious view of all acts of animal cruelty and abuse. Individuals who are found guilty of such acts, or of failing to care for their animals, can be charged under the Animals and Birds Act.
For animal cruelty cases, first-time offenders can face a maximum fine of $15,000, or a jail term of up to 18 months, or both. Repeat offenders can face a maximum fine of $30,000, or a jail term of up to three years, or both. In addition to these penalties, offenders may be disqualified from owning any animal for up to 12 months. This serves as an added deterrent against acts of animal cruelty, and safeguards animal welfare.
We are reviewing the penalties under the Animals and Birds Act to ensure that they remain effective in deterring acts of animal cruelty and abuse. The review will take into account feedback from consultations with the relevant stakeholders and the public. Beyond regulation and enforcement, NParks will continue to work closely with stakeholders, such as animal welfare groups and veterinarians, to raise public awareness on responsible pet ownership and animal care.