As Danish consul, practising lawyer, and having adopted two rescue dogs, animal welfare is something close to my heart. Andalusia is considering a law to stop animals being abandoned and having to be put down. There are general laws covering the whole country regulating animal wellbeing including the different aspects such as the welfare of wild, farm, zoo, and circus animals. Endangered species have special protection e.g., the Lynx.
Now the Regional Government of Andalusia is going to take a step forward and promote the protection, well-being, and responsible ownership of animals in its territory. The law will regulate movement, access to public spaces, transport, and recreation areas. In this sense, it is possible for municipalities that have a beach in their area to make spaces suitable for dog access, also including access to establishments and public transport. For e.g. Fuengirola, Malaga has been declared as a dog friendly municipality.
Also the treatment of pets in situations of gender violence and pets of homeless people, establishing that Andalusian public administrations facilitate that people who enter emergency centres, shelters or sheltered flats They can do it with their pets, provided they are duly identified and registered in the corresponding registry.
In addition the regime of abandoned and lost animals is regulated, with new features such as the regulation of urban feline colonies, also creating a specific section of feline colonies in the Central Registry of Companion Animals.
Likewise, this draft law proposes concrete measures that allow progress in reducing cases of abuse and neglect through education and awareness programs and sterilisation campaigns, while providing a solid and updated sanctioning regime that acts as a deterrent. The main points are that the animal that is to be adopted must be sterilised before it comes into season for the first time, unless a vet says otherwise. Private breeding or sale is to be made illegal and animals must be registered before they can be re-homed.
If you are considering getting a dog here in Andalusia I would recommend visiting one of the many shelters. In order to adopt my podenco and galgo, I had to enter into a contract to have them sterilised. As I said this this is just a proposal and if this does become law, I will let you know.
Marisa Moreno Senior Lawyer at Just Law Solicitors and Consul for Denmark.
Est. 1992 www.justlawsolicitors.com