11/09/09 The City of Dubrovnik Should Not Be a Dog Killer
Animal Friends reacts sharply on the announcement of taking the euthanasia decision
The increased number of abandoned dogs is a consequence of the irresponsible behavior of their guardians but also the lack of sanctioning citizens that abandon their animals by the veterinary inspection. Although the Animal Protection Act fines the abandoning of dogs with 15,000 kuna, so far no one has been sanctioned yet while the shelters are jammed with abandoned dogs.
The killing of dogs cannot be a solution for this huge number of abandoned dogs. It is important to solve the cause of the problem, while the mandatory microchipping of all dogs is one of the solutions. Although the Animal Protection Acts regulates the mandatory microchipping, this regulation applies only to dogs born after the year of 2004. With a city decision enforcing mandatory microchipping of all dogs irresponsible guardians of dogs could be effortlessly identified and penalized, and the money collected through these penalties could be invested in animal shelters.
Animal Friends in collaboration with the Association of the Towns of the Republic of Croatia already requested all towns to take a decision about the obligatory microchipping of all dogs as one of the preventing measures against the abandonment of dogs. Dubrovnik supported this campaign but never took such a decision. Therefore the announcement of taking a decision for euthanasia of abandoned dogs should be condemned since the town of Dubrovnik does not want to solve this issue in a civilized manner.
Animal Friends once more appeals to the town of Dubrovnik to solve the issue of abandoned dogs in its area in a way that won't jeopardize the lives of animals and is in accordance to its good international reputation. Instead of seizing after the most unpopular solution which is the killing of animals it should, among other things, take the decision of mandatory microchipping of all dogs such as towns like Velika Gorica, Karlovac and Pozega already did.
The local authorities in Croatia should ensure a location for lost and abandoned dogs, their veterinary care, organize an information center for abandoned and lost animals, make the data of these animals available to the public and make its citizens more conscientious about animal protection.
Animal Friends supports the announced building of a shelter for abandoned dogs according to the Animal Protection Act only if its capacity will be large enough to take care of all dogs. If the town of Dubrovnik built a shelter for a small number of dogs, it would be obvious that the decision on building a shelter only serves as cover for unobstructed and legally approved killing of abandoned and rejected dogs.
Animal Friends supports the civil initiative against the killing of 300 abandoned dogs in Dubrovnik, and sharply condemns the decision on euthanasia as a solution to the issue of abandoned animals.