Legal changes to protect animals

THE list of animals protected from cruelty by the Penal Code will be enlarged, and abusers will be forbidden from owning pets.

Representatives of the Partido Popular (PP) and Catalan Republican (ERC) parties have reached a compromise to amend the code, adding measures against animal abusers.

Whereas in the past proved abusers were only banned from working with or selling animals, they will now be banned from owning animals for a period of one to three years.

The list of animals protected by the code will be enlarged to cover a wider range of pets or tame animals, including snakes, ferrets, iguanas, tarantulas and pigs, among others.

Fines will also be put in place for people found to have abandoned animals in life-endangering conditions.

Joan Tarda, spokesman for ERC at the Justice Committee for Congress, said that although the agreements reached with PP are a step in the right direction, he considered the measures insufficient.

Tarda declared that the PP had refused to accept bans on dog and cock fights and a measure against cruelty to animals at events such as the Toro de la Vega mediaeval bull festival held each year in Tordesillas, Valladolid.

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