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Animals

Basic Rules for Dog Owners

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Last week, we explained that the new Animal Welfare Law coming into force in September covers much more than just insurance. This week, we will give a bullet point list of some of the key requirements for dog owners.

In the most basic overview, you must look after animals, care for their wellbeing, make sure they are healthy, and happy. Dogs must have adequate living space, suitable to the breed and their size. You must exercise your dog frequently. Your dog must have regular health checks.

Your dog must have identification (microchip), which must be kept up to date. If your dog is lost, you must report it to the authorities within 48 hours.

Your dog cannot be left alone in closed or open spaces where they could cause damage.

If your dog cannot live within your home, they must be provided with their own adequate accommodation that protect the dog from things like the weather, and they must have sanitary facilities. The dog must also be provided with access to food and drink.

You must not permit uncontrolled breeding. Only registered breeders can breed animals for sale.

You must not allow your dog to deposit urine of faeces in the street unless you clean it afterwards.

You must pass a training test to prove you can look after your dog. Once you have completed this test, it will be valid indefinitely. This course will be free.

You must take out civil liability insurance for your dog. This cover must be in place for the entire life of the animal. This applies to all dogs.

If your dog dies, you must obtain an official document stating that it has been cremated or buried in accordance with the rules by a licenced company.

Your dog cannot wander freely in public spaces without supervision.

Dogs cannot be kept on terraces, balconies, basements, etc. They must have adequate space and accommodation. They must also never be left in vehicles.

Your dog must not be tied to a moving vehicle.

Your dog cannot be left home alone, unsupervised, for more than 24 consecutive animals. It is 3 days in the case of other animals, but 24 hours for dogs.

Dogs ARE allowed in commercial premises, unless the venue expressly prohibits them, in which case they must display a sign prominently. Dogs are not allowed in areas such as those used for food preparation or storage.

Remember, the actual rules are more complex and more detailed, and you can read the full legislation, translated into English, at animalwelfarelaw.es. Next week, we will talk about cats.

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