The end of animal cruelty and abandonment in France, says MP report

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Loïc Dombreval, DEPUTY for the Alpes-Maritimes and president of animal protection group The Animal Condition, presented the report of 300 pages of 120 recommendations to the Prime Minister, Edouard Philippe and the National Assembly this week (Tuesday 23 June).The main proposals focus on four key areas:

Animal cruelty laws

The MP said that currently, the laws in France are more severe in persons of damage to property than someone who hurts an animal.

He said news service FranceInfo: “If I break a statue, I can get up to five years imprisonment and 75 000 euros fine. If I intentionally kill a dog, the risk of two years [in prison] and [a fine of] Of 30 000 euros. There was a gap that I find quite amazing, that we have to correct.”

Buying laws

Mr Dombreval would also like to make the impulse purchase of an illegal pet.

He said: “the Purchase of a cat or a dog in 30 seconds in a pet store, in the parking lot of a supermarket, in a market or an exhibition, under the pressure of your children, without really knowing what you are doing, because the dog is not good for you because you don’t live in a good place for a dog…there are so many reasons [not to do it].

“I want for this marriage to not be followed by a divorce, so we need to make things better. Facebook, Leboncoin…all of these websites or pet shops, where you get impulse buys -we need to ensure that they are limited.”

A minimum of knowledge certificate

Among these proposals, requiring the pet owners to pass a “certificate of minimum knowledge” before buying a pet, to ensure that they know what they are doing before you buy it.

Mr Dombreval, said: “It would be a small test on the things that you absolutely need to know: How much it cost [to own a pet]? What should we do? How does it work? Some people don’t know that, and that leads to abandonment or abuse, sometimes by negligence, ignorance, lack of knowledge.

“It would be free, before buying an animal. If you fail, you can take it again immediately. This way, you have three, four ideas of what is absolutely necessary to know, before you care of an animal.”

Abuse hotline

The proposals also suggest the creation of a special telephone number – a number green – that people can call if they see or suspect someone of cruelty or abuse towards animals.

Mr Dombreval said: “You never know who, who to contact when there is a problem, when you see acts of abuse against a dog or a cat. They are part of your family and some see them as members of the family, and you should treat them this way.

“To be able to call someone quickly, to report an act of abuse or neglect of an animal, it is something that seems also very important for me to be able to improve [animals’] condition.”

The abandonment of animals is a contentious issue in France.

A shock campaign last year, the animal welfare charity 30 Million Friends, revealed that the country has the largest number of abandoned domestic animals in Europe, 100 000 per year.

Read more: French record for the abandoned animals, shows shock campaign

The high number of abandonment have led to several animal charities to warn that shelters can easily become overwhelmed with the cats and dogs that are left in trash cans, or tied to fences on the side of the road.

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