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

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

Dogs needed to help evaluate a promising new anti-cancer drug!

During National Pet Cancer Awareness Month, biotech company PharmAust puts the call out for canines to help evaluate a new anti-cancer drug shown to be safe and effective in preliminary trials. The compassionate use program is a prelude to a multi-institutional canine cancer trial to start next year.

Leading veterinary cancer specialist Dr Angela Frimberger and her team at Veterinary Oncology Consultants are evaluating a drug called monepantel (MPL) in dogs that have been newly diagnosed with B-cell lymphoma and have not started any treatment.  MPL is already approved for veterinary use for a different indication and species. PharmAust is aiming to repurpose MPL as safe and effective cancer treatment.

“Four dogs have already been treated for lymphoma and the results have been very  promising,” said Dr Frimberger. “So far, we have shown that MPL is safe, and three out of three dogs with B-cell lymphoma have had stabilisation of disease on the drug without significant side effects!”

PharmAust is inviting more dogs with lymphoma to complete the last phase of the program.

“PharmAust’s long term strategy is to develop MPL to treat cancers in both dogs and humans,” said Richard Hopkins, CEO of PharmAust. “A ‘Phase I’ trial in human cancer patients at the Royal Adelaide Hospital showed that cancer markers in patients are significantly suppressed. Treatments that work effectively in canines are recognised as being highly predictive of the way drugs behave in human clinical trials. Trials undertaken  using MPL in dogs will inform and accelerate parallel efforts to develop MPL as a human cancer therapy.”

Program entry criteria

The canine entry criteria for the present compassionate use program are:

  • Stage 1 to 3 lymphoma (based on physical exam)
  • Substage a
  • Immunophenotype can be pending but must be submitted, and needs to be B-cell based on clinical characteristics
  • No previous treatment, including corticosteroids (prednisolone)
  • No other significant concurrent medical problems
  • Good quality of life.

“The treatment currently involves a relatively large number of capsules, so dogs that are difficult to orally medicate wouldn’t be great candidates,” said Dr Frimberger. “But we are working on reformulating the drug to make it better tasting and easier to administer to dogs before the full trials commence next year.”

The MPL program involves two consultations/treatments at the Animal Referral Hospital (ARH) in Homebush, NSW. Owners would have to transport their dogs to and from Homebush for the two treatments. PharmAust will cover all compassionate use program costs, including travel expenses to and from the ARH, as well as costs for the initial conventional chemotherapy treatment upon program completion.

 For more information or to enrol, please contact Dr Angela Frimberger on drfrimberger.monepantel@gmail.com

 What is canine lymphoma?

Cancer is the number one cause of death in dogs over the age of 2, with 25 per cent of deaths attributed to cancer¹.  “Approximately one in four dogs and one in five cats will develop cancer in their lifetime. But thanks to more pet cancer awareness, improved preventative care and early diagnosis, we are better able to fight pet cancer,” said Dr Frimberger.

 

Lymphoma, the most common cancer in dogs, occurs in the white blood cells of the immune system. Symptoms can include tumours, lethargy, weight loss and loss of appetite. “The key to a good prognosis with canine lymphoma is early diagnosis and this particular form of cancer is very rapidly progressive, so it’s important to act quickly,” she said.

 

National Pet Cancer Awareness Month is a reminder to pet owners to regularly inspect your pet for any lumps or bumps, and pay attention to sudden changes in appearance and behaviour. “I always recommend keeping pet insurance so that if you do need to make any major treatment decisions, you can focus solely on your pet’s best interest rather than having to worry about costs. And, if you are concerned about anything, contact your veterinarian for an assessment,” said Dr Frimberger.

Five reasons why pets help mental health sufferers.

1 in 4 people across the globe will at some point in their lives suffer from a mental or neurological disorder. Closer to home that figure is said to be around 45% of the total Australian population.  Whether suffering short or long term; the most common trigger for mental health issues is social; with sufferers often experiencing long periods of isolation, social rejection and stigma. Those that own a pet can show improvements in the fight against mental health issues.

PetSafe® Brand Australia this month partnered with Dr Leigh Plummer, a Sydney based Clinical Psychologist to further explore how of pet ownership can help to improve the lifestyle of those suffering mental health issues.

‘Experiencing a mental illness, such as depression and anxiety, can be a daily battle’, comments Dr. Plummer, ‘There is some research showing that owning and caring for a pet can help to support your mental health by improving social, emotional and physical wellbeing”.

PetSafe® Brand Australia and Dr. Plummer have come up with the top five reasons why pet ownership can help to improve the lives of those suffering mental health conditions:

 Increase physical activity

Being a pet owner can lead to more engaging and physical activity.  ‘Whether you are being more active with a pet in the home, or getting out and about, having a pet can increase your level of exercise which in term has been shown to improve mood, decrease stress, reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression and enhance physical fitness’, states Dr. Plummer.

 Increase social interaction and remove isolation anxiety

Pet ownership can help to boost social interactions and lower isolation issues.  ‘Having a pet can absolutely increase your social interactions be it through social media or face to face’ says Dr. Plummer, ‘incidental conversations with strangers about your pets can take place on a walk, at the dog park or even on a Facebook Community Pet Group’.

 Provide companionship and reduce loneliness in the home

Pets provide 24/7 companionship which helps to increase mood and reduce loneliness for people that live alone. ‘The unconditional love that a pet can give you is often a relief to those that have difficulty interaction with others or have low self-esteem’, says Dr. Plummer

Boosts mood by providing routine and purpose

Owning a pet provides a person with daily routines, which in turn can boost mood and help stop feeling sad.  ‘It’s not only what our pets do for us, it is also the act of caring for a pet that helps us to feel good’, says Dr. Plummer, ‘giving and caring for others can feel productive and be rewarding. We may also feel useful and needed. Caring for a pet may also temporarily take the focus off ourselves, our worries and negative thoughts’.

 Reduces fear and anxiety

Pets are great listeners, cuddles and companions. They can provide those who suffer from fears, anxiety or depression comfort and unconditional support and love with no judgement. While some pets might be better than others for people to own Dr. Plummer concludes that it is completely up to the individual and their needs. ‘I don’t think that there are any pets ‘better’ then others to own, it is all up to the individual and what suits your needs. What are you hoping to get out of caring for the pet and how will it fit into {or improve} your current lifestyle situation. I think every animal has its own individual personality, which makes caring for a pet all the more rewarding!’

 Comments provided by Dr. Leigh Plummer, Clinical Psychologist based in Sydney, Australia.

 *Additional health advice:  While there may be many benefits to caring for a pet, it is important to seek professional advice and support for a mental illness. If you think that you may be experiencing any mental health concerns, talk with your doctor and consider engaging in treatment with a mental health professional.

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Upcoming events

  1. PIAA Pet First Aid Workshop – Chelsea VIC

    Tuesday 21 November @ 5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
  2. PIAA Pet First Aid Workshop – Richmond NSW

    Thursday 30 November @ 9:30 am - 12:30 pm

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