Unlawful Practices and Double Standards at International American Bully Show

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Over the weekend, the Cape of Good Hope SPCA monitored the International American Bully Show held in Milnerton on Saturday. Unfortunately, the event raised serious concerns as several contraventions in terms of the Animals Protection Act 71 of 1962 were observed, prompting the SPCA to address the issues at hand.

Cropped Ears and Animal Protection Act Contraventions

SPCA Inspectors discovered that the majority of the dogs participating in the show had cropped ears, a direct contravention in terms of  Section 2(1)(a) of the Animals Protection Act. The Animals Protection Act clearly prohibits maiming of any animal. Offenders could face severe penalties, including fines up to R40,000 per charge and/or imprisonment for up to 12 months with a criminal record.

Cape of Good Hope SPCA Chief Inspector Jaco Pieterse sternly warned, “We would like to send a strong message out to those cropping ears of dogs – this will not be tolerated. If you are caught, you will face the full might of the law.”

Denial of Water and Hostile Behaviour

Several dogs were denied access to drinking water, a critical concern given the breed’s susceptibility to heat exhaustion. SPCA inspectors had to repeatedly instruct owners to provide water, encountering hostility and resistance. Some owners even refused, claiming that giving water to the dogs would cause bloating. Our Inspectors ensured that each and every dog had access to drinking water throughout the event.

No Permit and City of Cape Town’s Inaction

The event organisers failed to secure the necessary permits for the show. Section 12 of the City of Cape Town Animal Keeping By Law mandates that any public display or exhibition of animals requires a permit from the City, involving consultation with an Animal Welfare Inspector authorised under the Animals Protection Act. Unfortunately, neither consultation nor a permit was obtained for this dog show.

Moreover, the show proceeded without the required permit from the City’s Events Department, which is mandatory for events with more than 200 attendees, non-permanent structures, and amplified sounds. Despite alerting the City to these contraventions, the SPCA encountered resistance and a lack of enforcement. The City insisted that no permit was required, even though there were more than 200 attendees with various non-permanent structures erected, food stalls and amplified sound. Our Inspectors were even threatened with arrest by City officials.

Double Standards and City Accountability
The SPCA expressed deep concern over apparent double standards in the City’s approach to event permits. While some organisers face scrutiny and strict adherence to legislation, others are seemingly allowed to proceed without the necessary permits. This inconsistency jeopardises the welfare of animals and the integrity of events within the City.

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