Romania: The Court of Appeal suspended the application of the stray dogs killing law

UPDATE / Last news:

On Friday 20 June 2014, the Court of Appeal of Bucharest has suspended the application of the Governmental Decision enforcing the so-called "killing law", following a legal complaint filled by the International Animal Welfare organisation VIER PFOTEN / FOUR PAWS. 

The Court recognized that allowing local authorities to delegate the management of stray dogs to private companies was in contradiction with laws into force.


Since December 2013 and the entry into force of this law also called "methodology law", more than 100,000 stray dogs have been killed, often in a cruel way. Moreover, it appears that shelters are not managed properly and are not really putting dogs to adoption. 

In January already, several Members of the EU Parliament (MEPs) reported in an official Press Conference that shelters are very badly managed and the adoption procedure is very complex which makes it almost impossible for private persons to adopt a dog from a shelter. The EU Commission also recieved so many complains about the Romanian stray dogs situation that it had to provide an official answer published in the EU Official Journal.


The Friday's ruling of the Court of appeal of Bucharest is not yet a victory against the killing of stray animals in Romania, but a chance will be given to the "catch, neuter and release" method to prove its efficiency.

VIER PFOTEN actively supports this No-Kill approach with a combination of preventive veterinary care, Identification and Registration and proper education of the public, as the only sustainable solution to tackle the stray dogs issue on the long run.


The decision of the Romanian Court of Appeal (in Romanian):

The Romanian "killing law": Law no. 258/2013 amending and supplementing the Government Emergency Ordinance no. 155/2001 on the approval of stray dogs management program

Written Questions related to Romanian stray dogs:



Press Conference in the EU Parliament on Stray Dog situation in Romania

Yesterday, the Members of the European Parliament, Andrea Zanoni and Janusz Wojciechowski, held a press conference in the European Parliament to discuss the result of their delegation visit to Romania, following the adoption of the new law on dog population management.

Continue reading Press Conference in the EU Parliament on Stray Dog situation in Romania


Animal welfare in Bosnia and Herzegovina

4 December 2012    
Ashley Fox (ECR)


Bosnia and Herzegovina has aspirations to join the EU, but will have to align its legislation with EU standards before it can be permitted to join.

I have recently been informed of the appalling treatment of stray animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Some recent examples include the inhumane way that dogs have been treated and disposed of at the Hresa and Banja Luka shelters. Such shelters are allegedly used to misappropriate public money, which may include financial aid provided by the EU to Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Whilst there is no EU legislation on the treatment of stray dogs, Article 13 TFEU does require Member States fully to respect the welfare requirements of animals.

1. Has Bosnia and Herzegovina begun to align its legislation with EU legislation on this matter in line with the Interim Agreement?

2. Will the Commission be carrying out an investigation into state shelters and animal abuse in Bosnia and Herzegovina?


Answer given by Mr Füle on behalf of the Commission
The EU legislation on animal welfare covers currently a large field, from animal welfare in farms, zoos and laboratory-testing of animals to movement and transport of pets. The welfare of (stray) dogs and cats does not fall under the EU's competence but within the remit of Member States' administrations.

The Commission has actively supported the work performed by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) to develop guidelines for the control of stray dog populations, recognising the importance of controlling them without causing unnecessary animal suffering while minimising public health and safety risks. However, it is up to Bosnia and Herzegovina, as full member of the OIE, to consider how it might most appropriately use these international guidelines in its national context.

The alignment of national welfare legislation with EC law is a prerequisite for EU membership, with the objective of full application of EU legislation upon the country's accession to the EU. In the case of Bosnia and Herzegovina, although there is legislation in place (Law on Animal Welfare), this is not fully implemented.

The Commission monitors regularly the enforcement of EU legislation on animal welfare through inspection services, spot audits and technical trainings. Technical assistance is available and offered to candidate countries both for the transposition and the implementation of EU legislation. However, for the time being no particular investigation into state shelters of Bosnia and Herzegovina is planned to take place.