Controversy as Spain EXCLUDES hunting dogs in new animal rights bill banning sale of pets in shops

Spain excludes hunting dogs after passes new animal rights bill banning sale of pets in shops

Spain excludes hunting dogs after passes new animal rights bill banning sale of pets in shops Photo nu Felipe Caparros

Parliament in Spain has stirred controversy over a bill passed on animal rights that excludes hunting dogs and other animals used for traditional rural activities 

Spain passed a new animal rights law on Thursday, February 9, which has stirred controversy, as it excludes hunting dogs and other animals used for rural activities.  

As per critics, this has been a result of the support from the powerful hunting lobby in Spain, due to which these animals have been excluded, even though the law bans sales of domestic animals in shops.  

The law has been introduced in the country with an aim to ‘overhaul the treatment of domesticated and wild animals in captivity’, as per Reuters, and also will impose prison sentences on people accused of abusing animals.  

Through this new bill, the parliament has also announced that zoos in the country will be converted into wildlife recovery centres.  

The plan to include hunting dogs in the bill was earlier supported by the Unidas Podemos, who are a part of the Spaining ruling coalition.  

But the party backed the law at the last minute, eventhough huntings dogs were excluded from it, in order for it to be passed.  

“To leave hunting dogs out of this law is to leave abusers unpunished,” Ione Belarra, Social Rights Minister from Unidas Podemos.  

Belarra added, “We have come as far as we can with the strength we have”. 

The party also asked for forgiveness from activists working on protecting hunting dogs.

According to dog rescue groups, the inclusion of hunting dogs in this law is important because it prevents owners from abandoning their animals after they are no longer fit for hunting.  

Estimates by the Barcelona-based Affinity Foundation in 2021 suggest that over 167,000 dogs were abandoned in Spain during that year.

The number increased further after the end of the hunting season.  

Charities in Spain are now also working on sending the dogs known as ‘galgo’ greyhounds, abroad for adoption.

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Written by

Imran Khan

A journalist, content professional, and former TEDx Speaker based in Tarragona (Spain), with a Master's in International Journalism (Cardiff, UK). Imran is an online reporter for The Euro Weekly News and covers international as well as Spanish national news. Got a news story you want to share? Then get in touch at


    • Wietse Haak

      10 February 2023 • 17:32

      It is very clear from whom these political parties expect their votes. Absolutely unacceptable!!!!

    • R and D

      16 February 2023 • 10:57

      An animal is an animal. Totally unacceptable.

    • Gary Verbickas

      18 February 2023 • 21:05

      What a farce. Extremely disappointing as hunting dogs are the most abused dogs in Spain. Very sad.

    Comments are closed.