Concern for animal welfare is a trend in the Dominican Republic, as in much of the world. However, the culture of mistreatment and abandonment of animals still persists in the country.
In order to eradicate this type of practice, Law 248-12, on Animal Protection and Responsible Animal Ownership, has been created. This law punishes animal abuse with fines, social services and even imprisonment.
Law 248-12, on Animal Protection and Responsible Animal Ownership, is a legal regulation that establishes the conditions under which animals must be treated, as well as the penalties for those who violate these provisions.
- 1 What crimes committed against animals will be punishable with imprisonment in the Dominican Republic?
- 2 What animal activities are exempted from the law in the Dominican Republic?
- 3 What happens if a person has a traffic accident in the Dominican Republic with a pet and takes the pet’s life?
- 4 Where should you go if someone mistreats your pet in the Dominican Republic?
What crimes committed against animals will be punishable with imprisonment in the Dominican Republic?
Most of the sanctions provided by Law 248-12 include fines, social services and in some cases provide for a prison sentence ranging from one to six months.
However, in cases of cruelty, it establishes penalties ranging from six months to one-year imprisonment and up to fines of 25 to 50 minimum wages.
Article 61 of the law states that among the actions considered as cruelty are the abandonment of domestic animals, the fighting of any type of animal, except cockfighting, mistreatment with malice aforethought and the unnecessary mutilation of parts of a living animal.
Mutilating parts of animals for aesthetics is animal cruelty. Abandonment is considered a form of animal cruelty as well.
What animal activities are exempted from the law in the Dominican Republic?
The law prohibits the presentation of circuses or other spectacles that use animals in their acts. Likewise, animal fights are not allowed, except for cockfighting.
The animal protection law in the Dominican Republic protects all animals, with special attention to domestic, pack and draft animals.
What happens if a person has a traffic accident in the Dominican Republic with a pet and takes the pet’s life?
Article 68 of the law provides for the care that must be provided to an animal that has been run over. When people “while traveling in motor vehicles, run over an animal and it remains alive, they shall be obliged to help it and take it to a shelter or a veterinarian’s office for the purpose of curing it”.
It also establishes that the abandonment of a run-over animal will be considered cruelty and will be punished with the penalties provided for in Article 66 of this law.
Where should you go if someone mistreats your pet in the Dominican Republic?
Any person, whether a witness or the person responsible for the mistreated animal, can go to the nearest public prosecutor’s office to file a complaint. The Public Prosecutor’s Office is responsible for the defense of the animal’s rights and the Animal Protection Department, which is part of the National Prosecution Department of the Public Prosecutor’s Office.