While various methods of wild animal management can be effective, an integrated approach is recognised as the most effective, particularly in relation to wild (or feral) pigs. Hunting with dogs allows the handler to dispatch animals that are concealed in their environment and still be able to observe the live animal and its carcass for signs of exotic disease. It is widely used because of its adaptability to the different environments found in this country as well as its cultural significance.
Capturing feral pigs is a specialised operation. Training should be provided for people and dogs to ensure a skilled process of dog handling and humane slaughter.

  1. Housing requirements:
    1. Kennels must protect dogs from rain, wind, extreme heat and cold.
    2. Kept clean, hygienic and free from odour.
    3. Be designed and maintained to avoid injury/escape.
    4. Of sufficient size to allow dogs to be comfortably and humanely housed.
    5. Be kept in such a way as to not cause a nuisance to others.
    6. Be kept in such a way as to reduce stress to the dog.
    7. Fencing must not allow dogs to roam from premises where they are kept.
    8. Bitches on heat must be securely confined.
  2. Care of dogs:
    1. Fresh, clean water must be provided at all times.
    2. Diet must be balanced and maintain health.
    3. Receive prompt veterinary attention when and if required.
    4. Be treated on a regular basis for external/internal parasites.
    5. Vaccinated as advised by vet.
    6. Kept in good physical health.
  3. Keeping of dogs:
    1. Dogs are to be kept with reference to applicable local, state and federal laws.
    2. Dogs should sought with the lifestyle and needs of the owner in mind.
    3. Dogs are to be identifiable at all times. The minimum requirement is local council registration. Microchipping and tags displaying owner’s name and phone number and identification are also encouraged.
  4. Training of dogs:
    1. Dogs should be: well trained and obedient, using appropriate and humane methods.
    2. Stock proof and socialised with other dogs, animals and people.
    3. Discouraged from exhibiting anti social and undesirable behaviour.
    4. Under appropriate control at all times.
    5. Trained either to bail or to hold pigs only by the ears.
  5. Sale of Pups/Dogs:
    1. Dogs are to be bred from animals, which are healthy, of good temperament and free from known genetic faults.
    2. Properly represented at time of sale.
    3. Guaranteed to work unless new owner is advised otherwise.
    4. Vaccinated unless new owner is advised otherwise.
    5. New owners are to be advised on parent’s temperament, appropriate care, training and housing for their new dog.
    6. Pups/dogs must only be sold to suitable homes. Fencing, use, yard size, children and other circumstances must be taken into account before sale.
    7. Pups and dogs are not to be homed as pets unless their temperament is suitable for such a lifestyle and the new owner is properly advised of their need for exercise, training and stimulation.
    8. Dogs are to be desexed before rehoming, or the new owner advised to desex the dog at a more suitable age.
    9. All relevant laws in relation to dog breeding are to be followed.
  6. Transportation of Dogs:
    1. When travelling on public roads in an open vehicle, dogs must be suitably restrained, crated, tied or caged and protected from the elements. In the case of tying, the lead must be short enough so the dog cannot fall from the edge of the tray. In the case of cages and crates, ample room must be available for each dog to comfortably stand, turn around and lay down.
    2. When hunting in the field, dogs being worked do not have to be restrained as above.
  7. Working of Dogs:
    1. The weather conditions, temperature and fitness of the dog are taken into account when being worked so as the not cause stress to the dog.
    2. Tracking collars are strongly encouraged.
    3. Dogs must wear protective gear when working. Minimum requirement is a cut collar, which protects the throat and neck. Breastplates, vests, tracking collars, reflective tags, flashing tags and glow tags/sticks are also encouraged.
  8. Number of dogs used on a pig:
    1. Maximum number of dogs on a pig at any time is
      • 2 holding dogs
      • 2 bailers
      • 1 pup in training.
      • Obviously the fewer dogs the better. The number of dogs you need will depend on their working ability, size/condition of the pigs and country you are hunting. We advocate the use of the minimum amount of dogs required to catch and dispatch the pig effectively and safely without causing undue stress to either animal.
  9. Handling and dispatch of pigs:
    1. The dispatch of the pig should be carried out with full regard for the welfare of the animal. It is unacceptable to use killing methods that:
      Cause severe and prolonged pain and distress.
      Result in deliberate mortal wounding of animals so that they die later away from the shooting or capture area.
    2. The Animal Care and Protection Act 2001 (ACPA) specifies examples of behaviour, which are taken to be causing cruelty to an animal, including to:
      • Abuse, terrify, torment or worry it.
      • Overdrive, override or overwork.
      • Kill it in a way that is inhumane, cause it not to die quickly, or cause it to die in unreasonable pain.
      • Unjustifiably, unnecessarily, or unreasonably injures or wounds it.
    3. Use of dogs to handle captured feral animals should be minimised. The aim at all times should be to handle captured animals quietly.
    4. It is preferable that dogs be only used to locate and bail feral pigs to enable humane dispatch. Dogs must respond to commands from the controller/handler and not harass the pig.
    5. Holding dogs should be used to hold the pig for the shortest time possible while the pig is humanely dispatched.
    6. The use of dogs to attack, mutilate or bring down a pig should not be allowed. It is an offence in some areas to allow dogs to do this.
    7. When the pig has been caught, it must be dispatched humanely and as quickly as possible. All captured pigs are to be dispatched, catch and release must not occur.
    8. Methods used to dispatch pigs must be rapid, effective and the most humane alternative possible to minimise pain and distress.
      • Option 1
        • The handler controls the dogs so that they are positioned safely to enable dispatch of the pig with an accurate shot to the head. (See diagram a - for shot placement).
        • Firearm user must hold the relevant licenses in their state, and the calibre of gun to be used must be a minimum .22 magnum.
      • Option 2
        • Dogs control the pig to enable the hunter to grasp and restrain the pig so that a single knife stick to the heart can dispatch it. (See diagram a below for knife placement). Knife must be of good quality with a steel blade with a minimum blade length of 170mm.
        • To ensure that the welfare of the pig is considered at all times, training in these procedures is essential to ensure the procedure is efficient and effective.
    9. If carcasses are not used for human or animal consumption they must be disposed of as requested by the landholder. It is desirable to cut the stomach to speed up decomposition. Under no circumstances are carcasses to be dumped along public roads, on public land or at Council tips, unless at specific dead animal facilities.










All members should read the rules. Ignorance is no excuse!

  1. The associaion committee has the power to fine, suspend and/or expel any member who is convicted of an offence relating to hunting, i.e. cruelty to animals, trespass (illegal hunting) etc.
  2. Violation of the APDHA code of conduct, procedures, by-laws or other applicable rules may be the subject of discipline, up to and including removal from the association, as recommended by the President and approved by the committee.
  3. The President shall also have discretion to immediately and temporarily suspend any member pending a hearing and consideration by the committee of further discipline, if immediate action is deemed necessary for the protection of the association.
  4. The person shall be notified and given a chance to request reversal of the suspension by submitting proof that he or she was not involved in such conduct or that the conviction was reversed. If such a conviction is reversed on appeal, and there is no further prosecution of the charges, and the association is presented with proof of same, the person's privileges with the association shall be reinstated. Additionally, the person shall be notified and afforded the opportunity to appeal to the Management Committee on the grounds that the conduct was not prejudicial to hunting. The appeal must be accompanied by a fee (see schedule of fees), which shall be returned if the appeal is sustained. This decision is final.
  • Approved & adopted by the Australian Pig Doggers & Hunters Association Inc. April 2005