The Inspectorate is the law enforcement division of the SPCA. It operates within the regulations of the Animals Protection Act No. 71 of 1962, the Performing Animals Protection Act No. 24 of 1935 and all subsequent amendments to these acts. The division’s task is to investigate neglect of and cruelty towards animals and it has the power to bring criminal charges against offenders.
Other matters which become indirectly involved concerning the welfare of animals is in the field of religious slaughtering, treatment and slaughtering methods in abattoirs, rehabilitation, wild life and stock sales, circus, zoo’s; monitoring of animals used for exhibition or entertainment, the training and use of dogs in the security industry and in fact anyone or anything involving animals and living creatures.
Investigations routinely take place, following leads given by the public or following on from animal protection inspections, often working closely with the South African Police Services, Nature Conservation or other bodies.
The Inspector is often called out to rescue animals which would involve animals trapped on cliff faces, in painful inhumane snares; up trees , down manholes, down drain pipes or up electricity poles. In fact in many strange places – animals often seem to find themselves needing the Inspectors rescue skills.
One of the major concerns for the SPCA is the methods of transportation of animals. Every day thousands of head of livestock are transported on the roads of Kwa Zulu-Natal. Livestock transport could be a small truck with a few head of goats to a huge multi-tiered truck carrying up to 700 animals on one trailer. When an accident happens the freeway resembles a battleground with dead and injured animals strewn across the roadway and startled animals running free in the traffic.
We currently employ six staff members in this department. The Inspectors will perform the following tasks:
· Pre-home Inspections (Prior to adoptions)
· Animal cruelty and neglect investigations
· Inspections on abattoirs, circuses, zoos, pet shops, petting farms; puppy mills; boarding facilities etc… (Any facility that homes / keeps animals)
· Monitoring of religious traditions which involve the slaughter of animals
· Monitoring the transportation of animals
· Animal Rescues
· Collection of injured, stray and unwanted animals
Our Inspectorate team need to be properly resourced in order to perform their functions professionally and effectively.
Each Inspector has a vehicle that is fitted with animal handling equipment which would include catch nets, control poles, collars and leads, cages etc… We still need to provide our vehicles with GPS devices to assist them when navigating through our large area. Other items that are needed are batteries and torches; pliers; pangas; rope; bolt cutters; first aid kits; cable ties; gloves; extendable ladders; reflective clothing etc…