Germany Debates Animal Protection Law Amid Sausage Dog Concerns

by Lisa

Germany’s top-selling newspaper, Bild, recently stirred up attention with a headline expressing concern over the fate of the beloved “German Sausage Dog.” The article stemmed from the German Kennels Association’s (VDH) petition against a proposed law aimed at curbing breeding practices that cause animals to suffer.

The draft Animal Protection Act, while raising concerns, does not intend to ban specific breeds like the dachshund. Instead, it seeks to address traits in dogs that may lead to pain, suffering, or harm. The VDH expressed worries that breeds like sausage dogs, with their distinctive features such as short legs and elongated spines, could be targeted due to potential health issues.


However, according to a spokesman from the Green-led agriculture ministry, there are no plans to ban any dog breeds outright. The focus is on preventing breeding practices that result in undue suffering for animals. The proposed law aims to establish clear criteria for responsible breeding, ensuring that dogs live healthy and fulfilling lives.


The concept of “torture breeding” has long been prohibited in Germany, but the current law lacks precise guidelines. The new draft seeks to provide scientific criteria to identify breeding practices that may harm animals. While existing dogs would be allowed to remain, they would not be permitted to breed or participate in shows if they exhibit traits associated with suffering.


Dachshunds, known for their role in hunting badgers, are particularly susceptible to health issues like intervertebral disc disease and chronic hip and knee problems. Responsible breeding practices, as advocated by experts, can help mitigate these genetic diseases.


While some animal rights groups like Peta have called for stricter measures, including bans on certain breeds, the focus remains on ensuring the well-being of animals. The proposed law will undergo further review by the German cabinet and parliament later this year, sparking ongoing debate amid regional elections.

With regional elections on the horizon, discussions about preserving German traditions and protecting animal welfare are likely to persist.


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