10/20/21 Tourists were petting them, and the Ministry ordered their shooting
Animal Friends Croatia are shocked by shooting at animals instead of punishing those who abandoned them
- Domestic animals can be caught and cared for without killing; shooting is unjustified and inadmissible
Animal Friends Croatia Association is appalled by the decisions of the Ministry of Agriculture, based on the findings of the State Inspectorate, about the shooting of domestic animals that roam without supervision. That is why Association has requested a revision of these decisions: "We are concerned because it seems that "taking care of" stray, neglected and abused animals by shooting at them is becoming a common practice of the state instead of finding them a new home and sanctioning irresponsible caretakers. The animals must not pay with their lives for human error and it is disgraceful that in the 21st century the shooting of domestic animals is prescribed in the European Union. Images of bloodied horses, goats and other animals brutally killed by firearms are not something by which Croatia should be recognized and remembered."
The Association explains that in June this year a decision was issued allowing the Hunting Society "Jarebica" from Novalja to shoot "wild" goats. The explanation for that kind of decision was that they roam freely and unsupervised in the hunting area, they are not registered, they have no owner or possessor, they are not properly marked and they are not under veterinary supervision. For some reason, the Ministry considers justified to punish goats by shooting at them because of all the reasons mentioned above. Even though for all those reasons people are the only ones that can be held responsible, not animals. And even though animals that were considered to be driven wild were caught with a sleeping rifle in similar situations.
But the goats were not wild. From the photos received by Animal Friends Croatia from locals and tourists, it is evident that they were approaching people who caressed them and gave them water, who photographed them and stayed near them. Those facts clearly show that they neither went wild nor posed a danger to citizens. "The photos indisputably show that the goats, which were unfortunately shot, were tame and even a tourist attraction. They could have been taken care of in one of the shelters for domestic animals or they could have been sold, considering that the owner asked for help in taking care of them, and not asked to shoot them, i.e. kill them. The unfortunate animals were easy to catch because they were confidential to people, so the use of firearms, near promenades and startled tourists, was redundant, inhumane and extremely cruel", states Animal Friends Croatia.
They warn that the same brutal fate also threatens "wild" cattle, sheep, donkeys, horses and other domestic animals in the Luka area. The Ministry of Agriculture has already issued a decision on the "necessary shooting" of those animals. It has also ordered Hunting Society Prepelica from Opuzen to use hunting weapons for "removal" of those animals, based on the Law on Hunting, all "to protect and preserve the biological and ecological balance of habitats, wildlife, wild fauna and flora".
"Domestic animals that are the victims of their irresponsible caregivers are easily caught with an electric shepherd and food or, in the worst-case scenario, with a sedative rifle. It is unjustified, scandalous and inadmissible to shoot with a firearm at animals that already suffered enough due to human exploitation, negligence and lack of compassion. If someone does not keep horses or goats under surveillance, then the caregivers who have abandoned their animals and thus broken the law should be punished, and it should not be brutalized on animals. Without a systematic and thorough implementation of legal regulations, the competent authorities are only the principals of barbarian treatment of innocent animals, which is a civilizational and ethical defeat", concludes Animal Friends Croatia.
They invite everyone who is also worried about shooting at animals to sign up for the Veggie Challenge at www.veganopolis.net and to try recipes of homemade dishes that will not kill any animals, instead of domestic animals on a plate.
Prevela Anamarija Lazić