These days there are again reports of dogs that have been exposed to the blazing sun for too long. But the animal welfare of the city of Stuttgart also has completely different tasks to deal with.
Stuttgart – Now, in the hot days, the incidents are piling up again: Dogs that are left in cars that are in the scorching sun. The animals are therefore acutely threatened by heat death. This is first a case for the police and the fire brigade, who arrange the bare minimum so that the animal can get out of this oven as free of damage as possible. In the update, this is then a case for the city authorities, specifically for the animal welfare office, located at the Office for Public Order. Among other things, she checks whether this has happened to this owner more often, whether there are any other indications of poor animal husbandry.
Messages from many animal areas
Christine Müller (name changed by the editorial team) has been working in the animal welfare department for eight years. Since there are quite a few four-legged friends and other pets here in town, there are three other colleagues, and they work closely with various specialists. With the police and the municipal enforcement service, for example in the cases already mentioned, which are also on site for other problematic tasks, such as the confiscation of a dog. In addition, the veterinary office is consulted when it comes to hygienic issues, animal welfare or the like, as well as when a pet has to be removed.
The catalog of topics to be dealt with is correspondingly broad: dogs that bark too much, that bite, that have killed a wild animal, that have to live in a cage that is too small, that make an unkempt impression, dog excrement that has not been collected has been . . . – Observations with other animals are also received by Müller: “Especially now in summer, people report who notice that rabbits, guinea pigs or turtles are out and about in the gardens with no possibility of crawling into the shade. One topic that has become increasingly prominent is the questionable puppy trade. The fact that in times of this pandemic the need for pets, especially dogs, has increased, is reflected here.
Comprehensive information helps
But back to the complaints: Was or is the situation really as it was described? Is the injury to animals or humans really as described? – As far as the immediate process itself is concerned, there are not always witnesses who can really confirm the description of conflict situations. Müller: “We are not on site and are therefore dependent on the presentation of the facts from everyone involved.” The consequences can be better assessed, for example whether the victim’s injuries are bite wounds or scratches or grazes . “If it is a question of animal husbandry that is not in line with animal welfare, the veterinary authority is called in,” says Müller, “if it is about animals that bite or that generally pose a risk, the enforcement service looks at it.”
Drastic decisions threaten
The repertoire of ways in which this can be dealt with is correspondingly varied. “If it is found that the animal is being fed incorrectly, we give recommendations on animal-friendly food,” says Müller. The office may not make recommendations to veterinarians, associations or animal specialists. “But we can point out that there are such and where you can find their addresses,” says Müller. But of course there are also more drastic decisions: the muzzle requirement, for example, ultimately the confiscation of a dog or the removal of an animal. This is a very drastic measure, with violent reactions from the animal owners. “This often creates very emotional situations,” Müller knows from experience, “because the owners often do not recognize the problems or assess them completely differently.” The question is often whether there is even the will to change behavior.
Precise descriptions help
Müller: “Before it gets that far, we check carefully and involve the respective experts.” A dog will only be confiscated when all those involved come to the conclusion that there is no other option, public safety and to ensure order. For some who have to face the sight of a suffering pet in their immediate vicinity, it seems like a long road. Müller: “What helps us with the decision and with the assessment are the best possible and comprehensive and precise descriptions of the situations.” That is why she does not think much of the distinction between fighting or list dogs and other dogs. “You have to be clear: Even a Chihuahua can be very painful,” says Christine Müller from experience, “ultimately it depends on the attitude.” She has a wait-and-see attitude towards the planned introduction of a dog driver’s license: “It is important that the people Before buying a pet, find out what it will mean for daily life in the future. ”A dog needs to be occupied with him on a daily basis, he needs constant exercise and care. This applies to both small and large dogs. And: “The hierarchy between dog owner and dog must be clear so that there are no problems.” Müller: “For me it should be mandatory that people inform themselves before buying a dog and are aware of the responsibility.”
For a duty to inform
Whether a dog driver’s license can do this – she wants to wait and see with a final opinion. Especially since the details are not yet known. Müller: “What happens if someone fails? How do you proceed then? ”She prefers to plead for the obligation to provide advance information.