More than a hundred organisations that rescue animals have asked the government, to fulfil its intention to transfer the protection of pets and stray animals from the Ministry of Agriculture to another entity.
Speaking to Lusa News Agency, the representative of the Portuguese League for Animal Rights (LPDA) Alexandra Pereira, stated that the current model, with the protection of pets in the Directorate-General for Food and Veterinary (DGAV), “is not suitable in protecting the legitimate interests of animals” and even talks about a “conflict of interest” issue
“It seems to us that there may be a conflict of interest when we talk about animal production and welfare in the same entity”, he said.
Alexandra Pereira stated that “there is a need to create an autonomous tutelage for the welfare of pets, equipped with veterinarians dedicated to these issues, continuing those related to animal health and public health protected by the national veterinary health authority, which is the DGAV”.
The inspection of animal welfare must also be supervised by a different entity, consider the animal protection and defence associations, which support the transfer of competences in relation to pet animals, which the Government has already announced that it intends to pass to the Ministry of Environment, an organic change that still needs approval by the Council of Ministers.
In July, after dozens of animals were burnt to death in a fire that destroyed two illegal shelters in the Serra da Agrela, Santo Tirso, the Minister of Agriculture, Maria do Céu Antunes, announced the departure of pet animals from the scope of the Directorate-General for Agriculture and Veterinary, which will continue with the competence of farm animals.
On a visit in August to the Casa dos Animais de Lisboa, managed by the municipality, the Minister of Environment and Climate Action, João Pedro Matos Fernandes, stated that the tutelage will seek “to create all the conditions for pet animals to have a happy life”, which will consist of sterilizing and betting on promoting adoption.