When we talk about animal abuse we are talking about an action as well as an omission that affects animals. They consist of different forms of abuse by humans with complete discrimination against a legally unprotected group. Some of these behaviors comprise indiscriminate attacks, poisoning, neglect, contempt, injury, sexual exploitation, exhibition, labor exploitation, sacrifice, etc.
And even though Spain agreed to the Council of Europe’s Convention for the protection of pets ,the approval of the law is still pending , which will affect some forms of animal discrimination. We have to say that we have been making some progress, such as modifying the Criminal Code or the Law on Pet’s protection, promoted by the Community of Madrid.
The articles 337 and 337 bis of the Criminal Code include legislation regarding the abusive behavior towards pets or even trained animals, situations that could damage their health or make them to be sexually exploited. The punishment in this case is imprisonment and professional disqualification related to animal care. In addition, it establishes aggravating circumstances like the use of weapons or dangerous items, viciousness, or causing loss or worthlessness of an organ or principal member.
On the other hand, the Protection of pets Law provides for the elimination of the exhibition of dogs and cats in pet stores within 2 years, the prohibition of forced sacrifices in animal shelters, sterilization to avoid overcrowding, the prohibition of displaying animals for fun or using them for begging or raffling, for exhibition or photoshoots in order to advertise something without any permission, as well as abandoning them in vehicles without ventilation and prohibiting shooting or attacking animals with firearms or air compressed weapons. Punishable with fines from 300 to 45,000 euros. Just being permitted by law the catalogue sales or via similar means, also prohibiting hawking, avoiding the compulsive buying and the use of animals as an object, with subsequent abandonment of them, amounting to 120,000 a year.
It is also really interesting to mention that in case of separation or divorce there are precedents that establish the joint custody as is common with children.
And when it comes to offender recidivism, in the future, the legislator wants to implement some programs that are similar to road safety workshops for traffic offences and community services.
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