Animal Welfare

Unlike most commercial farms, livestock reared and kept on city farms have contact with large numbers of people, many of whom will have no experience of livestock and may not know how to behave around farm animals. Close monitoring of the stock at all times is therefore of great importance to prevent misuse and/or ill-treatment.

It is important that each city farm's Animal Welfare Policy reflects the farm’s own individual circumstances. It is also vital that the policy is constantly developed through on-going discussions among the city farm's stakeholders, including those who will implement the policy.

FCFCG promotes good practice and helps - through information, advice, access to training and examples of good practice - to raise standards from whatever position is currently practiced on a city farm

Unlike most commercial farms, livestock reared and kept on city farms have contact with large numbers of people, many of whom will have no experience of livestock and may not know how to behave around farm animals. Close monitoring of the stock at all times is therefore of great importance to prevent misuse and/or ill-treatment.

It is important that each city farm's Animal Welfare Policy reflects the farm’s own individual circumstances. It is also vital that the policy is constantly developed through on-going discussions among the city farm's stakeholders, including those who will implement the policy.

FCFCG promotes good practice and helps - through information, advice, access to training and examples of good practice - to raise standards from whatever position is currently practiced on a city farm. The principles of good animal welfare are:

1. Freedom from thirst, hunger and malnutrition
2. Freedom from discomfort
3. Freedom from pain, injury or disease
4. Freedom to express normal behaviour
5. Freedom from fear and distress.

In acknowledging these freedoms, those at a city farm who care for livestock should practice:

a. Caring, responsible planning and management
b. Skilled, knowledgeable and conscientious stock-keeping
c. Appropriate environmental and welfare design
d. Considerate handling and transportation.

 

Additional information:
Animal Welfare Act 2006 in England and Wales (with a similar Act in Scotland and additions in relation to Northern Ireland).

The Animal Welfare Act requires that anyone responsible for an animal/bird will have a legal duty to meet the five basic welfare needs described above. That legal duty extends to individuals keeping pets, and city farms will be required to ensure that no animal/bird is sold to anyone under the (proven) age of 16. Although this has been good practice, it is now a legal offence to ignore the age limit (previously set at 12).

Good animal husbandry also helps to reduce the likelihood of people contracting infections that can be passed from animals (zoonoses). A Code of Practice has been developed to ensure risks are minimised.

 

Advice From FCFCG

We are currently updating our animal welfare information. In the interim if you have any specific queries please contact:  ian@farmgarden.org.uk