Center for Animal Welfare Legal Protection    
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Autonomous non-profit organization
Center for Animal Welfare Legal Protection

Justification of Introduction in Russia
of a Three-Tier System of Measures
to Resolve the Problem of Neglected Animals
was forwarded in the form of petition
from our organization
to the Russian President and Premier of the Russian Government
On October 4, 2004

      On October 4, 2004, our organization forwarded a petition to the Russian President and Premier of the Russian Government, in which we set out in detail "Justification of Introduction in Russia of a Three-Tier System of Measures to Resolve the Problem of Neglected Animals". These measures include limitation of cat and dog breeding by their owners, which will stop animal overpopulation and will cut off the stream of neglected animals pouring out into the streets.

Our proposals regarding the solution of the homeless animals problem in Russia.

      Our Organization in its appeal to the RF President V.V. Putin dated October 4, 2004 proposed that a three-tier system of measures aimed at solving the homeless animals problem is introduced in Russia. In this document we propose the following:
      * () apply methods of economic regulation in the field of environmental protection as provided for by the RF Law On Environmental Protection, article 16 Payment for adverse impact on environment and article 18 Ecological insurance in the form of, respectively, three taxes, different in meaning and independent of one another, imposed on cat or dog owners:
          - "Cat or dog owner tax for the risk of arrival of animals unclaimed posterity,
          - "Insurance-tax payable, when purchasing cats or dogs",
          - "Annual tax imposed on cat or dog owners for environmental pollution caused by animals ".
      "Cat or dog owner tax for the risk of arrival of animals unclaimed posterity
constitutes an application of a financial tool curbing the breeding of cats and dogs by their owners. Imposition of this tax must be mandatory for the owners of non-sterilized female cats and dogs or of non-castrated male cats and dogs, as there exists a risk that they may give birth to unclaimed posterity (the case for females) or be involved in the case of posterity arrival (the case for males).
      Introduction of a tax on non-sterilized (non-castrated) dogs and cats will be conducive to sterilization (castration) of animals by their owners.
      "Insurance-tax" shall be payable (at the moment of purchase or each year) by individuals who bought cats or dogs commercially, for the risk of these animals losing the owner so that the state could be compensated in this manner for the life-support expenses of these animals that lost their owners.
      "Annual tax imposed on cat or dog owners for environmental pollution caused by animals shall be paid by all owners who bought cats and dogs for inevitable inconveniences of varying degree caused in the course of keeping animals to other individuals and for environmental pollution (excrements, parasitized infection, noise, smells, etc.).
          Note. The owners who picked up dogs and cats on the street or took them from animals shelters on their own, shall be exempt from the "Annual tax imposed on cat or dog owners for environmental pollution caused by animals, because by taking part in the keeping of neglected animals they are making an effort to protect environment from pollution.
      * (b) being guided by article 2 of the RF Law On Environmental Protection on observance of human rights to friendly environment and provision of favorable conditions for vital activity of man and by article 50 of the same Law on banning the production, breeding and use of plants, animals and other organisms, not organic to natural ecosystems without the elaboration of effective measures to prevent uncontrolled propagation thereof..." (for reference: cats and dogs are domestic animals and are not organic to natural ecosystems, for this reason they are unable to arrange their life support without a direct or indirect participation of man, which means they should be in the streets), approve the "Requirements to the owners of cats or dogs in the area of environmental protection", by including the following standards therein:
          "It is not allowed to keep adult non-sterilized (non-castrated) cats or dogs, except where the owner is engaged in purpose-oriented (commercial, pedigree-stock) breeding, or there is a report from a state veterinary institution (vet clinic), saying that a particular animals is incapable of reproduction or there are contraindications to a sterilization (castration) surgery.
          It is not allowed to engage in purpose-oriented (commercial, pedigree-stock) breeding and sale (purchase-sale) of cats or dogs posterior without an appropriate license for this kind of activity as well as in the absence of contract-requests of a standard pattern from potential buyers, that reached the seller prior to the birth of animals to be sold.
          All animals sold to the buyer must have an identification mark on the body indicated in the contract. A copy of the contract-request shall, on a mandatory basis, be forwarded to a supervisory body. The identification number (code) shall be entered in the All-Russian universal register.
          Transfer of cats or dogs from the seller to the buyer at the moment of sale (purchase-sale) on the markets, in pet-shops, in the streets or other public places, except places proper where the animals are kept (i.e. private house, apartment, nursery, animal shelter) is inadmissible.
          Animals may only be sold (be objects of purchase-sale) if not younger than three months old and provided with a certificate of having undergone a full course of vaccination (with mandatory quarantine) against infectious diseases (for cats: rabies, panleucopenia, , rhinotracheitis; for dogs: rabies, carnivores plague, enteritis, hepatitis, adenovirus, leptospirosis), with a note of a state veterinary institution.
          Should the owner refuse to keep his cat or dog, he must hand the pet over to a state animal shelter-distribution center or to a different owner for keeping, with a mandatory concluding of an animal transfer standard-form contract.
          A dog may not be set loose in any territory outside the owners house (apartment, homestead land) unless the dog owner (or escort person) is near to keep the dog on a lead and control its behavior. A dg may only be released from its lead in special places reserved for this: fenced-in dog exercise grounds."

      * (c) guided by article 2 of the RF Law RF Basic legislation on health care of the citizens relating to "observance of human and civil rights in the field of health care and provision of pertinent state guarantees", and to "priority of preventive measures in the area of health protection of citizens", and taking into consideration the potential hazard of neglected animals staying in the streets (to environment, citizens health and property), to exercise the rights of citizens (consumers) to the safety of activity (work, service) associated with cats or dogs, in line with article 7 of the RF Law On Protection of consumers rights relating to the right of the consumer to the safety of the goods work, service", for which purpose to approve Requirements of the safety of all types of treatment (sale of goods, works, services) of cats or dogs to the life and health of the consumers, to environment (based on the "Requirements to the owners of cats or dogs in the area of environmental protection" formulated above) and include in the list of goods (works, services) that should comply with the said requirements the following kinds of activity: breeding (including pedigree-stock breeding) of cats or dogs; sale (purchase-sale) of cats or dogs.
      * (d) guided by article 4 of the RF Law On Licensing certain types of activity, whereby licensed types of activity include activities that are likely to harm the rights, legitimate interests, and health of the citizens, to include in the list of activities (indicated in article 17 of the Law) requiring a license, the following activities: breeding (including pedigree-stock breeding) of cats or dogs; sale (purchase-sale) of cats or dogs.
      * (e) appropriate fines for violating articles of the Requirements. And other regulations and by-laws developed on the basis of the aforesaid items (a) (d).

Comparative characteristic of using various "humane" methods of dealing with homeless animals

      The table below shows that an optimal solution of the fate of homeless animals is not the setting up of life-long animal orphanages, all the more so not the release of animals back into the streets after sterilization, but a paid guardianship by individuals, financed from taxation of the owners of purchased animals.

Table 1.

Concept humaneness towards animals
Concept nameAnimals' average life-spanSurrounding people interested to see the animal healthy and of a long life-spanAdverse impact on and death of animals resulting from incompatibility of particular animals with others in case of cohabitation or joint fostering
Impact on species of domestic animalsImpact on wild fauna of woods and parks
Concept of stray dogs and cats sterilization with return to former habitats (at present introduced in Moscow by Moscow government decrees No 403- dated 19.07.2001 "Procedure of neglected and stray dogs and cats netting, transportation, sterilization, keeping, recording and registration in Moscow ", amendments in decree 819- dated 01.10.2002)From a few minutes (e.g. a cat, being released into the street for the first time, may be torn apart by dogs or overrun by a vehicle there and then) to 2 years. (These are adult animals only. Most puppies and virtually all kittens die in the street, not reaching the age of three months)1. Per every person acting as a guardian of homeless animals there are dozens of people who are interested in having such animals taken away from their place of residence, study, recreation: they, too, have a voting right and are entitled not to be in love with such animals; as a result, nobody can guarantee that homeless animals will be healthy and nothing will jeopardize their life; the more homeless animals we see in the streets, the more manifest is cruelty towards them.
2. There is a fearful hazard that all homeless animals will one day be annihilated if there should arrive circumstances, when in connection with the danger for humans or with importance for the state the questions of being humane towards animals become matters of secondary consideration: for example, when there are reports of rabies outbreaks in the city or when major international events are being held (example: from newspaper reportings, on the eve of the Olympics in Athens, stray dogs were annihilated).
1. Neglected and their masters' dogs kill neglected cats on a mass scale (there are frequent reports of cases where a few days after the operation, a sterilized cat is torn apart by dogs before the eyes of guardian who nursed the cat back to health; what humaneness are talking about?!)
2. There are no officially allowed shelters for cats in the cities (according to veterinary standards, cats cannot live at temperatures below +15(C)). The basements of houses are walled up everywhere, as a result, the cats either remain inside or, having lost their shelter, get torn by dogs outside. (Items 1 and 2 indicate that the concept is absolutely unacceptable, because the most popular type of Russia's domestic animals - cats - is subjected to mass extermination)
3. There often occur fights between packs of dogs, conflicts within the pack hierarchy.
Neglected animals (above all, dogs) destroy rare species of the fauna, including those entered in the Red Data Books.
Concept of keeping neglected dogs and cats in life-time animal orphanagesFrom 2 weeks (in case of becoming infected with an infectious disease) to 3 yearsAn animal orphanage is more concerned about the turnover of animals admitted in it than about increasing the length of their life or about their health since the orphanage receives charity donations at the moment of admittance of animals. There seems to be no better way of vacating places at an orphanage other than through natural loss of animals under the conditions of animal overpopulation and lack of demand for the pets1. The main demerit of orphanages: it is impossible, even if the newest and most expensive disinfectants and animal treatment drugs are available, to fight infection effectively, infection being a permanent bane of animal orphanages; as a result of infection, animals die or become chronically sick, infecting one another.
2. It is not uncommon to see the dogs die as a result of dog hierarchy conflicts in overpopulated orphanages.
There is no impact on the wild fauna
The concept of keeping neglected dogs and cats by individuals in their homes under a paid guardianship agreementBiological life-time 15 - 20 yearsHealthy condition of a pet kept under a paid guardianship agreement is guaranteed by the agreement, because the guardian each month receives money subject to the condition of producing to the inspector a healthy animal that can be identified by a special mark and the index cardCases of cruelty among animals are ruled out, because at the time of concluding a paid guardianship agreement, guardian candidacies are selected thoroughly and conditions of pet keeping are monitored closely. Maximum number of animals kept together is strictly specified, and compatibility of animals is an important consideration.There is no impact on the wild fauna

Table 2.

Economic/legal appraisal of the concept
Concept nameImpact on sociumImpact on ecologyEfficiency of investing budgetary resources
Health protection of individuals (Constitution, Fundamentals of RF Health-protection Legislation", "On Sanitary-Epidemiological Welfare of Population")Social development and well-being of population (Constitution, Civil Code, "On Protection of Consumers' Rights", legislation pertaining to labor, disabled, etc.)Ecology, favorable environment and biodiversity ("On Environmental Protection", "On the Fauna ")Ecology of housing, houses, flats (Constitution, environmental, health and other legislation)Use of budgetary resources as social assistance to individualsUse of budgetary resources as social credit, capable of bringing profit to individualsControl of invested budgetary resourcesVolumes of available budgetary resources and other resources for implementing the concept
Concept of sterilizing neglected dogs and cats, with return to former habitatsThe concept is incompatible with health protection of humans, because conditions are produced where: 1. People must anytime be aware of encountering a pack of dogs
2. Neglected animals suffer and die before the eyes of people, which causes heart diseases, nervous breakdown and mental disturbances
3. People, picking up and bringing home several animals at a time, often develop all kinds of ailments, expose themselves to a high hazard of being bitten, of contracting rabies, infectious diseases
4. Deterioration if the rabies situation as it is impossible to vaccinate all neglected animals
The concept brings about social conflicts as it produces conditions in which many people, for the sake of saving the animals are forced to pick them up from the streets and take them to their homes, spending all their money and time and losing a profitable occupation, proper housing and well-being and becoming destitute in the process, being deprived of the right to development and other rights; most such people are elderly women, the disabled, who are subjected to insults, physical and psychological assaults by other individuals and officialsHas an extremely adverse impact on ecology, favorable environment, because neglected animals (above all, dogs) exterminate the wild fauna, which destroys biodiversity of urban and suburban woods and parks; this impact does not yield itself to control and cannot be eliminated unless the concept is changed; therefore, the concept is incompatible with the basic principles of environmental protection and fauna protection; nor is the concept compatible with holding major international events in the city.Has an extremely adverse impact on housing ecology by producing conditions in which individuals are forced to turn their flats to home orphanages for pets or to feed neglected dogs and cats near blocks of flats and housing, which often interferes with normal course of life of the neighbors and surrounding people and sometimes makes life unbearable due to offensive smell and noise; this impact is hard to control and cannot be eliminated unless the concept is changed.Investing budgetary resources in the concept is as good as inflicting damage on the state and individuals for budgetary resources, because treatment of people bitten by neglected dogs is virtually envisaged by the concept and requires of the state roughly as much resources as sterilization itself. The guardians of neglected animals spend even more than that; for this reason, the concept cannot be regarded as social assistance to individualsInvestment of budgetary resources is absolutely disadvantageous to allControl of invested budgetary resources is impossible as it is difficult to record sterilized neglected animals in the streetsThe volumes of available budgetary resources allocated for work with animals are very insufficient for implementing the concept, which leads to a steady increase of the numbers of neglected animals and their shadow annihilation.
Budgetary resources are wasted since sterilization of neglected animals alongside uncontrolled breeding of pets by their owners has no impact on the reduction of the growing numbers of neglected animals. Because most puppies and virtually all kittens still die before they reach the age of 3 months. Here, the only benefit of sterilization is that birth is not given to posterity doomed to excruciating death. Nearly the entire increment of neglected animals (especially, cats) stems from animals thrown out into the street.
Concept of keeping neglected dogs and cats in lie-time animal orphanagesAn orphanage may have an adverse impact on individuals living in the neighboring houses: noise and smellVirtually, has no impact, providing, however, that neglected animals are 100% removed from the streetsAn animal orphanage may have an adverse impact on the ecology of an adjoining territoryHas no impact on the housing ecology only if the orphanage is at a considerable distance from residential buildingsInvestment of budgetary resources cannot be regarded as social assistance to individualsInvestment of budgetary resources is absolutely disadvantageous to all individualsControl of invested budgetary resources is very hard to arrange due to high probability of the resources being misusedThere are no budgetary resources or land for setting up animal orphanages of sufficient capacity to accommodate all homeless animals
Concept of keeping neglected dogs and cats in home conditions under a paid guardianship agreementNo impactHas a positive impact for paid employment increases, including employment of women, the elderly, the disabledNo impactNo adverse impact on housing ecology, provided the rules of a paid guardianship agreement, where the number of kept animals is strictly limited, are complied withInvestment of budgetary resources constitutes direct social assistance to individualsInvestment of budgetary resources is a social credit, capable of bringing profit to individuals who are the recipients of these resourcesControl of invested budgetary resources is simple, reliable and unbiased due to the simple and strict system of a paid guardianship agreementResources constitute social assistance to individuals, and for these purposes there exists high-capacity accounts, making it possible to translate the concept into reality fully, i.e. 100%.

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