Factory or top-class facility: Animal rights group says no
Animal Liberation has lodged a submission in response to the proposals for a dog breeding facility at Moonee Beach.
The facility at Tiki Rd would provide breeds including bord-doodles (border collie x poodle), groodles (golden retriever x poodle) and Aussie doodles (Australian shepherd x poodle).
The DA papers state the facility will operate according to Victorian Breeding Dog Standards, ensuring a vet will regularly attend to check on the care of the animals.
The proposal has attracted a lot of discussion and emotive language. While the proponent describes it as a top class boarding facility, opponents liken it to a commercial factory, farming dogs.
The basis of Animal Liberation Australia's submission to Coffs Harbour City Council is that the applicant has not provided sufficient detail in their Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).
"We invested a considerable amount of time reviewing and considering the applicant's planning proposal, EIS and physical plans," Animal Liberation's campaign director, Alex Vince said.
"We have responded accordingly, addressing the NSW Government and Council planning criteria, and have used this opportunity to raise some of the many concerns we have."
He says Animal Liberation has existed for over four decades and has accumulated considerable experience and knowledge about the issues of animal welfare and animal protection across Australia.
"Our mission is to permanently improve the lives of all animals through education, action, and outreach."
The breeding facility will have approximately 30 breeding dogs but they will mostly live off-site at 'guardian homes'.
Up to 20 adult dogs will be at the premises at any time.
Under the breeder's established Guardianship program, the dogs live as family pets in Guardian homes however the breeder shares ownership of the dog for the first four years.
The dogs are mated off site in Guardian homes and would be moved to the facility to give birth.
But Animal Liberation's rural campaign co-ordinator Lisa Ryan says there are a number of details missing from the applicant's proposal.
"The onus is on the applicant to provide sufficient information and detail in their EIS to enable a comprehensive assessment, and it is our informed view that the applicant has failed to do so as required with the applicable planning instruments," Ms Ryan said.
She says it's concerning that the applicant has referred to Victorian legislation but has "completely failed to demonstrate compliance with NSW legislation".
The group points out that various planning provisions including the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, require Council to consider the public interest of development proposals.
But they describe the applicant's response to animal welfare considerations as merely "fleeting" and "demonstrating a disconnected and dismissive attitude towards community and public views concerning the treatment of other animals, particularly those bred for profit."
They say the lack of detail in the proposal will restrict Council's ability to undertake a meaningful assessment in line with relevant planning instruments and public expectations.
Public submissions in relation to the DA have now closed.