what the draft of the new Animal Protection Law says

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the pet as one more member of the family. Not in a metaphorical or symbolic sense, but totally strict, with the word of law. After the first step taken in decemberwhen Congress gave the green light to a package of reforms that, broadly speaking, went on to recognize dogs, cats and other pets as “living beings endowed with sentience” —and not objects or things—, the Government yesterday made a new move to shield its “protection” as one more of the house. The Council of Ministers gave the green light to the preliminary draft law on animal rights and welfare, a text that, among other measures, contemplates that pets must be in the family nucleus.

On the draft of the law, the first to regulate the rights of animals at the state level and which must now continue its processing in Congress and the Senate, with which it could be modified, states that companion animals must be “integrated into the family nucleus, in good health cleanliness and hygiene”. When that “coexistence” is not possible due to its size or other characteristics, the rule clarifies that its owners must guarantee “adequate accommodation”, sheltered and clean. “In the case of gregarious animals, in no case can they be kept isolated from humans or other animals and they will be given the company they need,” he stresses.

Control breeding and sale

The law is also emphatic in prohibiting them from being chained. That is not allowed, nor that they can walk on their own, without the supervision of their owners. “Companion Animals they won’t be able to stay tied nor wandering through public spaces without face-to-face supervision by the person responsible for their care”, details the regulation, which cites other “general obligations”, such as providing them with veterinary care, reporting the loss in less than 48 hours or, in the case of dogs, hire civil liability insurancea requirement that extends to his entire life.

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Another important point is population control. Unless the owners are registered in the Breeders Registry, the new regulation makes it clear that “the necessary measures must be taken to avoid the uncontrolled reproduction of pets”. Moreover, to guarantee it, the law establishes that pets that have access to the outside and may be in contact with other animals without supervision must be sterilized, a requirement that is also transferred to the specimens that live in the houses if they are in contact with partners of the other sex. In that case, at least the males or females should also go to the vet for sterilization.

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The norm directly connects with another of the great guidelines of the law: only professional and authorized breeders can dedicate themselves to commercializing animals. Therefore, sales between individuals, frequent until now and which used to be channeled even through websites such as Milanuncios. “The breeding and trade of pet animals, excluding fish, may only be carried out by persons duly registered in the Registry of Breeders, dependent on the Directorate General for Animal Rights“, emphasizes the norm, which emphasizes that one of its objectives is to stop what it understands as a “paradox” around pets: their “commercial objectification” despite have been recognized as “sentient beings”.

The commercialization of pets is prohibited even in pet stores, except in the case of fish, as well as the exhibition and display for the purpose of sale. “The transmission, for consideration or free of charge, may only be carried out directly either from the person responsible for the breeding, or from an Animal Protection Entity, without the intervention of intermediaries, whether they act for consideration or free of charge. The transfer of animals between individuals must be, in any case, free and be reflected by contract“, affects the regulations endorsed yesterday by the Government.

Goodbye to the exhibition

Future state regulations It also incorporates other novelties of draft. It vetoes, for example, the exhibition of wild animals in circuses, fairs and carousels, in addition to their participation in “public shows or artistic, tourist and advertising activities” that may cause suffering or even anguish to the animal, which it can affect, for example, horseback riding, nativity scenes and processions. It also prohibits using them as prizes in raffles or promotions, sacrifices are eliminated and it is penalized to leave a dog unattended for more than 24 hours.

The law also redefines what a dangerous animal is, modifying the 1999 law. In addition to its physical capacity to cause damage, an examination will be taken into account that will assess the behavior of each specimen. “Animals of the canine species will only be classified as potentially dangerous after carrying out an individualized sociability study“, collects. In addition, it contemplates that the owners must take a basic course on “responsible ownership”

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The regulation leaves out bullfighting shows, animals raised for production and those intended for experimentation and research. In any case, in addition to giving the green light to the draft of the new law, the Government has endorsed changes in the Penal Code that toughen the punishments for animal abuse of vertebrates, both the domestic ones, which coexist with man, and the wild ones. The objective, highlighted yesterday Ione Belarra, Minister of Social Rights and the 2030 Agenda, is to respond to a “social demand” and adjust the regulations to the “sensitivity” that is already being seen on the street. “In our country there are three great scourges: the mistreatment, abandonment and sacrifice of animals. This law aims to fight against these three main scourges,” she explained yesterday.

The new measures, for now, have already received endorsements and complaints. The Observatory of Animal Justice and Defense missesfor example, that the crime of abandonment or the punishment of sexual abuse of animals be made even tougher. Other animal groups yesterday shared their optimism and applauded a regulation that, they believe, “will reduce petting” and follows the European trail.

Pictures | Anoir Chafik (Unsplash) and
Dietmar Ludmann (Unsplash) and Rebecca Campbell (Unsplash)

the pet as one more member of the family. Not in a metaphorical or symbolic sense, but totally strict, with…

the pet as one more member of the family. Not in a metaphorical or symbolic sense, but totally strict, with…

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