Legislation and Codes of Practice

Laws and responsibilities

Animal welfare is a shared responsibility of governments and industry (including animal owners, transporters and staff in registered slaughter establishments). Industry stakeholders and animal welfare groups play an active role in policy development. Provincial and territorial governments have primary responsibility for legislation and compliance. In Manitoba, laws protecting animals are The Animal Care Act and Animal Care Regulation.

Codes of Practice

The codes of practice are nationally developed guidelines for the care and handling of farm animals. The codes serve as our national understanding of animal care requirements and recommended practices.   

Section 2(1) of the Animal Care Regulation 126/98 incorporates and establishes Codes of Practice and other standards for the care and handling of animals and they are specified as acceptable in Schedule A, B, C and D.

Schedule A

Includes the National Farm Animal Care Council (NFACC) codes of practice. NFACC codes are developed with input from veterinarians, scientists, behaviourists and farmers. They are developed for most species and include requirements for animal welfare. Generally it covers information on farmed animals.

Schedule B

Generally, it covers information on research, euthanasia and commercial use of companion animals. 

Schedule C 

Includes standards relating to keeping, using, handling and displaying animals in the course of operating, working in or participating in a circus.

Schedule D

Includes standards for non-domestic animals - reptiles, fish. 

Farm animal councils
Farm animal councils are organizations of diverse partners including animal agriculture industry groups, animal welfare advocates, governments, scientists, veterinarians and the food industry.


Other reference sites
       -Animal Welfare Position Statements (Canadian Veterinary Medical Association)


For more information, please contact the Animal Care Line, or call 204-945-8000 (in Winnipeg); 
1-888-945-8001 (toll free).