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Georgia to tighten sanctions in the protection of domestic animals

By Tea Mariamidze
Friday, May 17
Georgia is going to tighten sanctions regarding the violation of the rights of the domestic animals by drafting a new bill- The Law on Animal Welfare – which aims at establishing a higher quality living environment for the pets and at ensuring their wellbeing and protection.

The draft law says that all domestic animals have the right to live in a decent environment. Their abandonment and killing (except for the cases envisaged by the bill) are unacceptable.

As for the welfare of animals, the draft reads that owners are required to: provide the pets with proper nutrition and water supply, ensure physical activities for them, create a favorable living environment, visit vets for their regular medical check-up once a year, take care of the sanitary-hygienic conditions for them, and make sure to provide emergency medical care when necessary.

The draft law states that any person who takes care or looks after a domestic animal is responsible for their health and wellbeing must take all reasonable actions to prevent the escape or loss of the animal.

“It is also not permitted to give a domestic animal to somebody as a reward, prize or bonus,” the draft reads.

Also, the owner of a domestic animal is obliged to provide the care for the animal in the possession and their babies too.

It is not allowed to keep animals chained or in a closed space for an extended period of time.

According to the authors of the draft law, if a pet dies, the owner has to notify the appropriate agency within a week, and the animal must be buried in a specially designated area by the municipality, be cremated or placed in a bio-thermal pit.

The new bill also envisages mandatory primary registration of the domestic animals. Registration will be free of charge, and the special registry base will keep the data about each registered animal.

Registration of domestic animals will be mandatory from 1 month age of the pet. In case of change of the domestic animal, the re-registration should take place in a month.

Violation of pets’ health conditions will cost the owners GEL 150. Also, if a person has more pets than allowed in one space, they will be fined by GEL 300.

Abandoning the pets will result in a GEL 100 fine while violation of domestic animal transportation rules will subject to a fine of GEL 100.

Using domestic animals for conducting scientific and laboratory experiments and carrying out their surgery without the purpose of veterinary treatment shall be punishable by fine or by imprisonment for up to one year.

Moreover, the unlawful killing of a domestic animal will be punishable by fine or by imprisonment from one to two years;

Animal training and distribution of the video and photography of animal fights shall be punishable by fine or by imprisonment up to one year while betting money on pet fights or allowing usage of private facilities or buildings for conduction of such fights shall be punishable by fine or imprisonment for up to two years.

In addition to this, arrangement, propagation and spreading of the footages or photos of animal battles will be subjected to a fine or by imprisonment from two to three years.