Interventions in underground animal markets or rooster farms. Directorate General of Animal Rights, Depends on the Ministry of Social Rights, cooperates with the police and judicial authorities as veterinary technical support in actions in which animals are affected. “We have created a tool that helps many professionals from state security forces and authorities to carry out stricter inspections,” explains Animal Rights Director General Sergio G. Torres.
According to the calculations carried out by Torres, in the interventions that participated, they seized more than 120 animals in the more than two and a half years that the General Directorate of Animals existed. Among all the actions, he remembers the operation that took place in El Alamo (Madrid). “I have never seen so many fleas on the floor. We had to enter with EPIs”, the general manager notes. They found “about twenty dogs in terrible conditions. They all had large numbers of parasites, fleas, ticks and raw scabies samples,” sources from the department added.
This was not the only diagnosis made by the Veterinary Intervention Unit (UIV). In addition, the dogs were “obviously inferior and aggressive in nature, which was caused by a terrible fear of people,” the same department said.
After the intervention, the owner is awaiting trial, and those animals that did not have an ID card are “incarcerated in an animal protection facility,” they note. The UIV consists of two veterinarians and one support staff who are officials of the Ministry. They are usually accompanied by Torres. His job is to assess the condition of various entities involved in judicial and police operations.
In addition to these technical profiles, some operations require professionals with much more specific knowledge. This was the case in the operation they carried out in September 2021 at the exotic animal fair held in Madrid, sources from the General Directorate indicate. On this occasion, members of the UIV in “civilian clothes” attended the National Police Court together with members of the Environmental Department of the Municipal Police of Madrid. “We witnessed the sale of a boa constrictor to a minor under the age of 18. There was an agent who connected two people, the buyer and the seller. Minutes were made [emitir] A possible sanction and boa were sent to the Center for Wildlife Recovery (CRAS),” says Torres.
Not only was the boa seized, but about 30 bats and pythons were also seized, the sale of which is “prohibited because they are dangerous animals,” municipal police reported at the time. To carry out these operations, they needed “a group of herpetologists to identify the various species found there,” the ministry notes. Torres explains that these specialists helped determine whether any of the identified species were “endangered or came from captive breeding.”
Animals are not confiscated in all cases. According to the calculations of the General Directorate, its workers participated in the intervention of more than 300 creatures, but only about 120 were requisitioned. In some cases, they are not seized because the administration does not have a place to stay, but the animals are taken care of by the police, as the animal department explains.
While the operations involved roosters, bats or horses, most of the creatures seized were dogs. In Parla (Madrid), they found “illegal” and “unhealthy” facilities where “more than 70 breeds of dogs dedicated to hunting activities” were housed, they indicate. They were in “deplorable conditions” and “unrecognizable”.
The animals were turned in there “when there was no hunting activity,” Torres says, and their owners paid rent. This operation was carried out in collaboration with the agents of the Nature Protection Service (Seprona) of the Civil Guard of Madrid and the staff of the Department of Animal Welfare of the Parla City Council, Europa Press reported. This case is also in court and is awaiting an oral hearing, the Consistory informs.
During these interventions, they came to find “dead animals in garbage containers.” This happened in Torrios (Toledo), where they went with the National Police to conduct a veterinary examination. The bodies were found in “Mfarveli” facilities. without regularization of animals as a zoological core”, – the sources of the Ministry note.
During one such veterinary examination, carried out by the UIV, they found a horse “obviously malnourished, with serious health, digestive, dental and nutritional problems”. The animal was found in Valdilecha (Madrid). A few kilometers from there, in Chinchon, a municipality also located in the community of Madrid, an intervention was carried out at the “Fighting Roosters Farm”. They found about 200 samples there. Males had “cut tops and branches.” At the same location, they also seized “drugs illegal in Spain and expired” as well as “animals with severe injuries.”
None of the actions the UIV has been involved in over the past two years are “finally closed,” Torres says. According to the data released by the General Directorate, the sanctioning procedures are still being conducted. The government is working on a rule that will tighten and standardize these penalties, as they currently depend on the regulations of each autonomous community. This text, the Animal Rights Bill, was approved in the second round of the Council of Ministers in August and is currently in Congress.
When this norm reaches the parliament, it provides that “in case of insult, which results in death, the punishment will be toughened to 24 months and to 36, in case of more than one aggravating circumstances”, the Ministry notes. sources.
With this law, Ione Bellara’s department is trying to end the abandonment of 300,000 animals each year by banning uncontrolled breeding and proposing that all owners of these creatures undergo a training course before purchasing an animal. The text also includes a ban on pigeon shooting, circuses with wild species and cockfighting.
Source: El Diario