CVAO iterates call for responsible pet ownership

CVAO iterates call for responsible pet ownership

“Let us consider our dogs (and other pets) as part of our family.”

This was the emphatic appeal of Dr. Michael Takinan, City Veterinary and Agriculture Office (CVAO) veterinarian I, during the regular media forum, August 17, at City Hall, on reports of several disturbing incidents of dog slaughtering in the Summer Capital.

He explained that under the Meat Inspection Code, dogs are not considered as ‘food animals’ and that penalties under RA 8485 or the Animal Welfare Act of 1998 as amended by RA 10631, have been increased.

The Act aims to protect and promote the welfare of all terrestrial, aquatic and marine animals in the Philippines by supervising and regulating the establishment and operations of all facilities utilized for breeding, maintaining, keeping, treating or training of all animals either as objects of trade or as household pets. For the purpose of this Act, pet animals shall include birds.

Takinan echoed the frequent reminder of CVAO head Dr. Silardo Bested for all pet owners to be “responsible and provide their animals with the basic needs and proper care”.

On August 11, three individuals in the city were caught slaughtering a dog at Camp 8 by personnel of the  Baguio City Police Office (BCPO)- Kennon Road Police Station and are now facing charges for violating provisions of RA 8485.

BCPO Director PCOL Glenn Lonogan said the arrests were part of the city’s stepped-up enforcement of the law in response to Mayor Benjamin Magalong’s call to promote and protect animal welfare.

“We strongly condemn cruelty to animals of any kind, particularly dogs, considering that they are man’s best friend,” he stressed.

The Mayor  earlier ordered the intensified implementation of the Animal Welfare Act after several reports reached his office of the serving of dog meat in some local restaurants, dog slaughtering and other acts of cruelty to animals. – Gaby B. Keith