Vive la France! The animals are dying
France attracts every year millions of tourists with its beautiful landscapes, famous gourmet food and fascinating culture. Would they still be that thrilled if they knew more about the state of animal welfare in this Central European civilisation? Terrible lacks can be found in the area of animal keeping and animal protection although thousands of French people fight for the benefit and welfare of their animals.
Not only with regard to culinary delicacies animal welfare is not taken too seriously. In this country, where pâté de foie gras and frog thighs are to be found on the menu and the bull fight has still many friends, stray dogs and cats are sometimes just caught and killed, in some regions it is permitted to shoot them.
Not to forget the misery of the animals in the French overseas departments; these tropical tourist paradises belong to France like the Champs Elysée and the Eiffel tower. They have French laws, the French social system and naturally EU membership. Nowhere in the whole of France suffer dogs more than here, apparently the saying holds true: Out of sight, out of mind.
In France animal welfare doesn’t have the status to be expected of a civilized country in the 21st century although the French people themselves are great animal lovers – every second one of them keeps a companion animal.
Dogs and cats reproduce especially in rural areas uncontrolled and end in pounds (fourrières), often not picked up by their sometimes indifferent owners. The pounds accept only stray animals caught by the police, not animals brought in by private people. The same pound serves often several communities, many are in bad condition. Lots of them are privately run, commercial locations which receive a certain amount of money per dog and day from the communities they have contracts with. The animals of which the owners cannot be identified within the legal delay can be transferred to an animal welfare organisation to be rehomed. But too often these shelters have no places available.
The tragic consequence: After the legal delay the animals are being euthanized regardless of how young and healthy they may be. 500.000 animals suffer this fate every year.