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A step towards victory for FOUR PAWS International: Court of Appeals rules in favor of abolishing stray dog killing law


A step towards victory for FOUR PAWS International! The Court of Appeals in Bucharest, Romania, has ruled in favor of international animal protection organization FOUR PAWS International and its Stray Animal Campaign, and has ordered the city to immediately cease all activity of killing stray dogs. In its ruling, the court determined that the methodology, as illustrated by FOUR PAWS International, is warranted, and that the city must make changes to their inhumane stray dog practices. FOUR PAWS International has been challenging the Bucharest stray dog law since January 2014, using proven approaches, community polls, and appeal tactics that have noticeably supported their strategic campaign.

Thousands of stray dogs have already been killed.
© FOUR PAWS | Mihai Vasile

FOUR PAWS confident for humane solution

FOUR PAWS claims for a humane solution.
© FOUR PAWS | Mihai Vasile

“The Court’s decision to cease all practices of killing stray dogs, illustrates its acknowledgment that the killing law has not been effective in reducing the number of stray dogs in Bucharest," says Gabriel Paun, Director of Campaigns at FOUR PAWS International. “This decision is a testament to our confidence, that a rational, humane, and proactive approach to this problem, is far superior then the irrational, inhumane, and reactive approach, from which the killing law was formulated."

Killing law contradicted laws of higher government

The Bucharest killing law had been put into effect in December 2013. Since that time, thousands of stray dogs have been killed by city officials.


According to Paun, “Many components of the localized killing law were contradictory to the laws of higher government. For example, according to this methodology, the local authorities had the power delegate the management of stray dogs to any private company to which it desired. By having the capacity to do this, the Bucharest government was simply opening the floodgates for other conflicts of interest, which bleed public funds. Another example, is that while the Bucharest government was mandating this killing law, it was also restricting public access to the animal shelters, thus making it nearly impossible for these dogs to be adopted into homes."

FOUR PAWS International recommends new legal framework for stray dog management

Since January 2014 FOUR PAWS is fighting for new stray animal practices.
© FOUR PAWS | Mihai Vasile

Over the past few years, FOUR PAWS International has been focusing on identifying from where exactly the main source of stray dogs lies, in Bucharest. Its determination: reproduction. “Thanks to the financial support of our donors, we have spayed and neutered over 100,000 stray dogs in Romania,” says Paun. “However, our efforts in keeping the public safe, and keeping our stray dogs protected, will only work if we have the support of both the government and the legal system.