.Animal welfare has hit the headlines again this week. The animal care policies in local council pounds have come under investigation on a Mallorcan television programme. This has come as the outcome of the news of the death of a healthy animal which had been living in the Calvia council dog pound for the past four years. The animal in question, Tyron, was a pitbull and had been put in the pound following an alleged incident. The animal and owner were acquitted of any wrong doing, but the dog was never released from the pound, and stayed there for four years until he was put down earlier this year by the council appointed veterinarian. Now local animal lovers and refuge volunteers have got together to start a campaign to highlight the living conditions of the council pounds and their seeming unwillingness to collaborate with the volunteers and charitable refuges that are all over the island.
“The councils don’t live up to their own code of conduct for pet owners,” said Angela Pryce a local campaigner for animal rights. “In particular the animals are supposed to get exercise and socialisation, but they don’t get the chance. This means that the animals in the council pounds start to develop behavioural problems”. The local voluntary refuge in Calvia, SOS Animal has volunteered to take over the care and management of the animals currently residing in the council pound but this offer had been turned down. “A lot of people don’t even realise there ARE council pounds, so the animals in there don’t tend to get adopted,” said Angela. “What was proposed did not involve the Town Hall and rate payers having to pay for it, the volunteers only needed access to the council pound. No money was needed to let volunteers walk the animals that are caged there. There is no need to open the public treasury to place the dogs by size or “character” in the cages … the politicians and officials only needed the will to do it”. The campaigners are currently collecting signatures: you can sign the petition at one of several veterinary surgeries in the South West, just go to your local one and ask.
Or visit http://www.change.org/es/peticiones/en-memoria-de-tyron-in-memory-of-tyron to sign the online petition.
On a happier note, several of the kittens that needed to find homes have now been adopted! There are of course many, many more kittens and puppies which need new homes, so please visit the Pet Project site to find your local refuge. Next week: we will feature the Centro Canino and their hard working volunteers.