President signs Animal Welfare Act – The Nation – The Nation of Costa Rica

Hundreds of pets accompanied by their owners, taken this Sunday June 11 the Paseo Colón to celebrate in large the signature of the Animal Welfare Act.

Despite the threat of rain, the parade started at 9:35. m. from the Mercedes Tower up to the main stage, located next to the Bank of Costa Rica. The walk was led by Duke, the dog symbol against the mistreatment of animals.

Labrador retriever, basset hound, beagles, bulldogs French, chihuahuas, fox terrier, chow chow, and German shepherds, among other breeds, followed in the footsteps of their owners until we reach the place where it would do the expected signature. Some dressed in their best finery, t-shirts, tapes and even blankets with national colors.

«We are very happy to be a part of the national history. Our animals have right to live with respect and punish those who want to hurt them,» said María Arguedas, a resident of Alajuela downtown, while I was in the arms of Lucy, a little french poodle.

READ:16 obligations and punishments that introduces the new Animal Welfare Act

This excitement also the experienced Gerardo Salazar, who traveled from Street Targets with its family and her three dogs to support the cause against animal abuse.

The march, which stretched about 400 meters, was attended by the President of the Republic, Luis Guillermo Solís, who walked between the lights as cameras, the selfis and the greeting of the people.

To his step, the cimarrona San Roqueña, gave flavor to the environment. Attendees also took advantage of the information booths of different groups, among them the National Association for the protection of Animals and Animal Life.

Historic moment

To be 10:55. m. the president Solís, sealed with his signature the document, which punishes with harsh penalties and even prison, the mistreatment of animals, or their death on purpose.

READ: Approved animal welfare act: penalties for abuse will be up to 3 years in prison

The excitement of the attendees and the barking of the pets joined in, at that time, to the applause of those who struggle for the defence of their four-legged friends.

With a «Yes, we can!» both the governor as representatives of Government and organizations on behalf of animals, among them Juan Carlos Peralta of Aba Animal (one of the main proponents of the law), had made what was considered a historic signing.

The document was also signed by the Minister of the Presidency, Sergio Alfaro, the Minister of Agriculture, Luis Felipe Arauz, and the Minister.i. of Justice, Marco Feoli.

«Today is a very special day for the costa ricans because we are here as one family. We are aware that we have crossed a threshold of a long road toward a better time that will be built step-by-step now with a law that ensures that perfected the mechanisms, and to improve the practices,» said Solis.

He added that it should tighten the step to regulate this law and to deepen the school curriculum that already includes animal welfare issues. He also insisted that the agencies of emergency treatment, to continue tending to the animals in a situation of vulnerability.

Solis insisted that we should not choose between the fight for animal welfare and the organized crime, or housing, because they are obligations of the State and do not compete with each other.

The activity was organized by the Government of Costa Rica and the Municipality of San José convened hundreds of social groups and animalistic, among them ChepeCletas, PerroCross, Vivaveg and World Animal Protection.

Joined the feast, the canine units of the country, who stole the attention of both adults and children during the party that ended with the music of Balerom and Ivory.


The amendment to the Law 7451 on Animal Welfare was approved in the second debate last Thursday, June 1, and was discussed during several months under the draft legislation N° 18.625, presented the current legislative popular initiative.

This legislation includes penalties of imprisonment from three months to a year to anyone who directly or through another person, cause harm to a pet or domesticated.

In addition, the new law punishes with imprisonment from three months to a year to anyone who directly or through another person to organize, lead or run fights of animals.

In addition, it imposes fines of a quarter or half a base salary to those who promote or engage in breeding or training to promote fights, in violation of the provisions on experimental or fails to comply with the basic conditions for the well-being of the animals.

As he detailed the Government in a press release, the approved law «exception to the application of penalties in regard to the fishing activities, aquaculture, farming, husbandry, livestock, veterinary, and those with a purpose of improving disease control, or plant protection, marking, breeding control or hygiene of the animal species».

In the same way, are exempt which are made for reasons of mercy, shelter of crops or production plots, which have the purpose of research, which is carried out with the purpose of safeguarding the public health and veterinary health, the activities of breeding, transportation and entertainment public or private animals that to comply with the provisions of the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock.

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