The French Society for the Protection of Animals say they fear a “wave of pet abandonment” with shelters already full as fake reports circulate claiming animals can contract COVID-19.
Council-owned dog pounds as well as animal protection associations’ shelters which collect animals from the pounds are already almost full to capacity, they say.
The French government ordered wide-ranging restrictions on the 12th of March that included forcing the Society for the Protection of Animals (SPA) to close its doors.
The society’s leaders believe that the rate of animal abandonment will increase during the nationwide lockdown and said: “Closing shelters to the public will drastically slow down adoptions.
“If a massive wave of pet abandonment occurs, it will lead to a massive wave of euthanasia in the pounds, as provided for by French law. “
The society called on animal owners not to abandon their animals in a press release saying: “All scientific sources, led by the World Health Organization, agree: Covid-19 does not affect pets such as dogs and cats, and they are not involved in the spread of this epidemic”.
The SPA warns the French “not to believe rumours about animals that could have catastrophic consequences in terms of abandonment”.
Jacques-Charles Fombonne, President of the SPA, made a solemn appeal to raise awareness, saying: “We call on all pet owners, all French people sensitive to the animal cause, to massively relay that it would be devoid of common sense and humanity to abandon your animal for false rumours (…).
“Let’s just be human beings!”
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Story By: Ernest Bio Bogore, Sub-Editor: Joseph Golder, Agency: Newsflash
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