The Pet Industry Association demands exacting standards from our members to ensure the welfare of animals and promote responsible pet ownership.


AusBoard 2019 - August 19-21 - Pullman Reef Casino Hotel Cairns

Supporting the industry through advocacy

Building better business

What we believe

The Pet Industry Association is the only industry association in Australia created to represent all businesses in the pet industry. Formed in 1979 as the PIJAC, we have evolved into a peak organisation which aims to create an environment of best practice principles and ongoing learning for improved technology and systems in the pet industry. The Pet Industry Association is run by members for its members and offers a voice for all who join by liaising with governments, animal welfare agencies, as well as pet and animal groups nationally and internationally. We are represented on government steering committees, consultation and advisory groups on pet ownership and industry issues around Australia.

To promote, support and represent a sustainable pet industry because we recognise that pets and their welfare are essential for a healthy society.

This ensures our members thrive and our Association continues to represent the majority of the industry.

The PIAA National Code of Practice and Code of Ethics are quality standards for the operation of businesses in the pet industry supply chain. The Code sets standards that exceed current regulatory requirements. Compliance with the code is a mandatory requirement for membership of the PIAA. An Ethics and Complaints Committee adjudicates any complaints against activity deemed in contravention of the code.
PIAA is a member of the Australian Companion Animal Council and is represented on and works with Aquatic committees nationally, including OFMJG and the NSW Ornamental Fish Reference Group, Animal Welfare Advisory Committees in QLD, NSW, NT and the ACT, the Domestic Animal Management Implementation Committee in Victoria and the Dog & Cat Management Board in South Australia. We’ve also worked closely with the governments in QLD, NSW and SA on pet shop codes of practice. PIAA also holds a seat on the NSW Government’s Companion Animals Taskforce.

Latest news

Keeping your pets safe from snake bites this summer

In the warmer summer months, snakes become much more active and pet owners need to be careful and safeguard their pets from snake bites, plus look out for the warning signs should an animal be bitten.

Dogs will often try to chase or kill snakes resulting in snake bites usually to the dog’s face and legs. Cats, being hunters and chasing anything that moves, are also quite susceptible to snake bites.

The sort of reaction your pet has to a snake bite is determined by a number of factors: the type of snake, the amount of venom injected and the site of the snake bite. Generally the closer the bite is to the heart the quicker the venom spreads to the rest of the body. In addition, at the beginning of summer, snakes’ venom glands are fuller and their bites are much more severe.

The tiger and brown snake are responsible for most of the snake bites in domestic pets. The tiger snakes have a bite that can be fatal to not only pets but humans. Brown snake venom is milder than the tiger snake’s. These snakes have a toxin that causes paralysis and also have an agent in them that uses up all the clotting factors that helps to stop your pet from bleeding. Tiger snakes also have a toxin that breaks down muscle causing damage to the kidneys.

Signs of snake bite include:

  • Sudden weakness followed by collapse
  • Shaking or twitching of the muscles and difficulty blinking
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of bladder and bowel control
  • Dilated pupils
  • Paralysis
  • Blood in urine.

If you think your pet has been bitten by a snake you should keep them calm and quiet and take them to a vet immediately. The chances of recovery are much greater if your pet is treated early, with some pets making a recovery within 48 hours. Pets left untreated have a much lower survival rate and many die. If your vet is some distance away, if practical, you can apply a pressure bandage – a firm bandage over and around the bite site - to help slow the venom spreading to the heart. Do NOT wash the wound or apply a tourniquet.

If you can identify the snake, tell your vet what type of snake it is - but don’t try to catch or kill the snake. If it is dead, bring the snake with you, otherwise there is a blood or urine test that can identify whether your animal has been bitten and the type of snake responsible.

Once the snake has been identified your vet can administer antivenom. Please be warned that antivenom is expensive and can result in a large veterinary bill, so it is best to try and keep your pets safe and away from snakes in the first place.

Snakes are attracted to potential food and water sources and safe, quiet places to hide. To reduce the risk of snakes finding your backyard or property attractive, keep the grass low, clean up any rubbish piles and clear away objects where snakes may be able to hide (e.g. wood piles, under sheets of corrugated metal).

If snakes are a common threat in your area, you could consider building a snake-proof fence around all or part of your property - information about snake-proof fences can be found through a search of the internet.

If you are walking your dog close to bushland - especially near water during the summer months - please keep your dog on a lead and avoid long grassy areas.

Keeping cats indoors with access to a snake-proof outdoor enclosure is the best way to prevent them having encounters with snakes.

Pets assisting in our better management of mental health disorders

The positive effects that pets have on people have been well-researched. From research conducted by the University of Manchester1 suggests that pets can help people who are living with a mental illness to manage their condition.

President of the Australian Veterinary Association (AVA), Dr Paula Parker says: “the human-animal bond plays a crucial and positive role in the health and wellbeing of the community”.

“Benefits can include companionship, health and social improvements and assistance for people with special needs.

“This research takes our knowledge about the human-animal bond a step further suggesting that pets can help people who are struggling with a serious mental illness to manage their mental health.

“Only through more research like this, can we come to better understand just how increasingly valuable animals are to an individual’s wellbeing and the community,” she said.

The study involved 54 participants with a severe mental illness, for example, schizophrenia or bipolar disorder. Twenty-five of the participants identified a pet as being important in the everyday management of their illness. What’s more, of these 25 participants, more than half identified their pet as being one of the most important things to them in managing their mental health.

“There’s already strong evidence to indicate that owning a pet brings health benefits including physical health benefits, for example, dog owners increase their exercise by walking their pet.

“Research also suggests that pets have positive effects on the community. A study2 conducted by the University of Western Australia found that pets facilitate first meetings and conversations between neighbours, with over 60 per cent of dog owners reporting that they got to know their neighbours through their pets.

“While pets can improve our health and wellbeing, it’s important to remember that the human-animal bond is a two-way street and we need to provide the same benefits to our pets by ensuring we properly care for their health and welfare,” she said.


  1. Brooks H, Rushton K, Walker S et al. Ontological security and connectivity provided by pets: a study in the self-management of the everyday lives of people diagnosed with a long-term mental health condition. BMC Psychiatry 2016;16:409. DOI: 10.1186/s12888-016-1111-3.



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