“We have CROA totally inoperable, they are unable to remove the animals from the street, they are full, they are overcrowded, they cannot cope with the emergency situation”, said Ricardo Lobo, from the direction of the National Association of Municipal Veterinary Doctors (ANVETEM), considering that “All of this is dramatic”, because “the waiting lists accumulate” and there are animals that will live all their lives in captivity.
“The problem is that, in fact, the law was made on the wrong premises, because the numbers we had until then are the same numbers of abandoned animals that arrive to collect us. They remain in the same order of magnitude and are not level with the adoption capacity of Portuguese families ”, he added.
Ricardo Lobo defended that the municipal veterinarians should manage the CROA, not in a logic of indiscriminate slaughter, but "according to criteria of animal welfare, socialization and the possibility of adoption".
“At least that veterinarians were given the opportunity to manage the CROA according to criteria of animal welfare, socialization, the possibility of adoption. At the moment, none of this is done, the animals are housed in the official collection center and will remain there forever ”, he said, stressing that he does not advocate a return“ to the past of treating animals as urban waste ”, in which they were collected, slaughtered and incinerated .
According to the official, "the law could continue to apply pressure and exist, and the deadlines for the entry into force of the slaughter ban were extended, by balancing the animals that are to be collected and the animals collected".
Ricardo Lobo stressed that this management, together with the awareness and sterilization campaigns that are being developed, will allow a balance to be reached between the animals available and the families interested in adopting within five to 10 years.
Therefore, in its perspective, it does not make sense to build more CROA, as several proposals discussed for days in parliament provide, not least because they will always be insufficient for animals that currently need a seat.
"Does it make any sense to be building kennels over kennels, over kennels, so that five years from now we won't need them?", He asked.
The official also stressed that there are economic issues and that resources that were essential for other branches of the veterinary are being diverted, because “it is not only about building”, but “it is necessary to maintain”.
Ricardo Lobo stressed that what is being done is to collect dogs that will spend their whole life in a CROA, compromising animal welfare, and underlined the case of Holland, considered an example of good practices, where some dogs are slaughtered , namely those who have been in the center for more than 12 months.
Law no. 27/2016, of 23 August, which approved measures for the creation of a CROA network and established a ban on the slaughter of stray animals as a way of controlling the population, defined that the Chambers had until October 2018 to adapt, and then this practice is prohibited.