Like every year at this time, there is one thing that, unfortunately, does not diminish: The abandonment of pets is legion at the time of the holidays, and like every year, the shelters are overflowing, the cats are let loose in the nature, dogs tied to poles… Nearly 60,000 animals are abandoned on the roads every summer. And 100,000 abandonments in all during the year! And we are still, in France, the sad European champions of abandonment… Animal shelters and associations alert on abandonment, the State is toughening the sanctions, but that does not seem to change anything. Besides the inhumanity of abandoning an animal, what is the criminal risk? We explain to you!
Since June 21, 2022, the first day of summer, 11,461 animals have been abandoned at the SPA alone; we therefore do not count the other animal shelters. 8000 animals, in July alone, discovered the cages of a refuge and the horrible wait for adoption. It’s still 11% more than last year in the same era ! And the SPA only has 7000 “places”. Do the count: the refuges are saturated and overflowing! Sandrine Weltmanndirector of the SPA, even explains that this year, they are obliged to create waiting lists to leave an animal… Unheard of! Jacques-Charles Fombonnepresident of the SPA, explains that impulse purchases like the little dog for Christmas and mass adoptions during confinements have a lot to do with these disastrous figures.
What are the penalties for abandoning your animal?
On the Gouvernement.fr website, here is what the author of the abandonment of an animal is liable for: Abandoning an animal is an act of cruelty and mistreatment, now punishable by 3 years in prison and a fine of €45,000. Abandoning a domestic animal, tamed or held in captivity is considered in France like a crime. Abandonment may also be accompanied by a ban on keeping an animalbut also a ban on exercising the professional activity which made it possible to prepare or carry out an abandonment.
This ban on keeping an animal is given for a maximum period of 5 years. Please note that if the abandonment was done knowingly, such as by tying it to a tree or leaving it on the side of a road, this constitutes aggravating circumstances and the penalty increases to 4 years imprisonment and a fine of €60,000. Finally, if the animal abandoned in such circumstances dies, the penalty can go up to 5 years in prison and a fine of €75,000! Here is what the law says… But these penalties are only very rarely carried out unfortunately. The associations are campaigning for these laws to be tightened further and above all, to be really applied.
Remember to identify your pet with Petlink!
In France, a law obliges owners of cats and dogs to identify their animals by microchip. This obligation concerns:
- Dogs born after January 6, 1999 over 4 months old;
- Cats born after 1er January 2012 older than 7 months.
Any unidentified dog or cat owner incurs a fine of 750€. You can also double your pet’s identification with a Petlink tag, which will allow you to identify your pet with a simple QR Code from a smartphone… These tags, sold for €10 for plastic models and linked to the ICAD chip of your animal, will allow you to find it more quickly if it were to run away.