Dogs Trust Representative Office in BiH: Appeal for Stopping Violations of APWA

Dogs Trust Representative Office in BiH is compelled to turn to the public with regards to several recent reports on violations of Animal Protection and Welfare Act in BiH and Protocol on Dogs Population management in Canton Sarajevo. The sources of these information are citizens, dog feeders and local animal right NGOs that have provided the video material that documents the violations.

Dogs Trust Representative Office is expressing its concern because of this situation and appeals to all actors to respect the Law and DPM Protocol.

The reports are mostly related to the activities of Hygienic Service Novi Grad (Lokom) and is related to the use of illegal equipment (sedation peashooter) and removing the neutered, healthy and peaceful dogs from the streets.

Dogs Trust has on numerous occasions attempted to contact Public Company Lokom, but the only information that we received was that the Hygienic Service acts directly on the orders of the Veterinary Inspection of Canton Sarajevo.
We are calling on the Lokom, as a public company using public budget for its financing, to demonstrate transparency and inform citizens on the details of their interventions, the locations, the number of removed dogs, the numbers of ear tags if the dogs have been marked, on the treatment to which the dogs were subjected to and about their final destiny. This would be the best way to remove the doubts of the public about their work, which is also in the interest of this public company.
We are also calling on all the relevant inspection institutions, particularly the Veterinarian Inspection of Canton Sarajevo, that is the part of the DPM Protocol, to inform the public on this matter.

In an effort to support the consistent and full implementation of the APWA in BiH and humane, lasting and sustainable resolution to the stray dog problem, Dogs Trust has signed a MoU with the Ministry of Spatial Planning of CS, verified by the CS Government in October 2014. The MoU (attached to this press release) has prescribed a detailed Protocol on the implementation of Article 14 of the APWA as well as on the support to the establishment of a self-sustainable DMP.

It is important to emphasize that the system that was the subject of the Dogs Trust’s support in the MoU did not include Hygienic Service Novi Grad, but the Cantonal Hygienic Service formed as part of the Public Company “Rad.” Although the Cantonal Hygienic Service has not started to operate yet, the verified document is relevant and obligatory to all the institutions dealing with the establishment of DPM.

DT Rep Office does not provide Hygienic Service Novi Grad with any support at present, but we stand willing to provide support to any local authority that operates transparently under the law.

Dogs Trust Representative Office continues to support the consistent implementation of the DPM Protocol and AWPA. Catching healthy, neutered and socialised dogs does not contribute to the solution, it actually makes it worse. These activities represent the line of least resistance because they are aimed only to satisfy the quota and form and they fail to deal with the small minority of dogs that genuinely pose a risk to the community.
DT Rep Office is supporting the full and non-selective implementation of APWA, including the Article 14, but only if it is implemented consistently and strictly as prescribed in the Government-verified MoU.

We are using this opportunity to call on the animal protection NGOs and citizens who care for the stray dogs to share the proof they possess with the responsible inspections, public and media, with the aim to sanction and stop the violations. Aside from being inhumane and illegal, as explained before, these activities are actually counterproductive.
If the violations prove to be the practice and if the authorities do not sanction and stop the further violation of the law, Dogs Trust Rep Office will be forced to decline its further support to Canton Sarajevo.