- United Kingdom
At Present the animal welfare act covers the below :
For a suitable environment (place to live)
For a suitable diet
To exhibit normal behaviour patterns
To be housed with, or apart from, other animals (if applicable)
To be protected from pain, injury, suffering and disease
It states as a owner/keeper you are responsible for the above and min age to keep an animal is now 16 .
It also states that :
Anyone who is cruel to an animal, or does not provide for its welfare needs, may be banned from owning animals, fined up to £20,000 and/or sent to prison (source http://www.defra.gov.uk/animalh/welfare/act/index.htm)
Yet in 2007 over 2,000 people were convicted in 2007, yet only only 54 were sent to prison.
And in 2008 complaints of abuse had risen by 12 per cent in 2007 to 137,245.(source : http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/article4428985.ece)
There was a 42% rise of people sent to prison for animal abuse in 2008, but we think this needs to rise to at least an 80% rise.
Only recently there was the following case:
The RSPCA believe this dog was thrown 70ft to its death from a balcony, after being badly injured in a fight.
A witness has reported seeing a gang of approximately ten to fifteen youths throwing the Staffordshire Bull Terrier off the fifth floor of Sidmouth House in Lympstone Gardens, Peckham, at around 9.30pm last Friday night.
It is believed that the gang had carried the dog to the block of flats after it had sustained earlier facial injuries, which the RSPCA suspects were probably inflicted during a dogfight.
The witness to the act said that the group of youths, which included a teenage girl, had carried the dog through the flats and the visibly injured animal was whimpering with pain. The teenage gang then headed to the fifth floor and walked along the communal balcony, where they threw the dog over the edge.
The Bull Terrier fell approximately 70 feet to the concrete floor below, where the gang then picked up the dead animal and threw it into a communal bin.
RSPCA inspector Rebecca London said: "This is horrible cruelty. I am absolutely disgusted that this poor dog was whimpering and in distress and yet this group thought it was fine to just throw it over the balcony to get rid of it".
If you have any information on the youths the RSPCA urge you to contact them in confidence on 03001234 999.
These people need to be stopped and the law needs to change. And a min prison term needs to be put in place at present the maximum term you can serve for animal cruelty is 51 weeks, we think this should be the min term you can serve, and the maximum should depend on the circumstances reflecting the case.
We in the UK are meant to be a nation of animals lovers, and are encouraged to treat our pets as "one of the family", yet the laws are far too relax and need to be made tougher and pet shops & breeders need to be policed more about who they sell animals too.
Animals cannot fight for their rights and need us to fight for them.
We also would like pet shops, breeders and anyone (including online private advertising) to be policed more and for them to record who they are selling animals to.