Certain animal abuse cases in Spain now carry harsher punishments that assault and gender inequality in the workplace
Essentially, abusing a dog can result in between 3 and 18 months in prison; the non-serious assault of a man or woman carries a maximum sentence of just one year.
The Ministry of Social Rights has argued that “it is false” that the new animal protection law punishes crimes against pets more harshly than those against people.
The highest penalties are linked to cases of “vicarious violence” in which an abuser harms the animal to harm their spouse. In these cases, “harm is done to the animal and also to the person” and the penalty is, therefore, greater.
Another criticism of the law is that it no longer refers to the abuse of domestic animals specifically (they used to be referred to as “under human control”) but to “any vertebrate animal,” which the CGPJ warns could lead to a conflict with Spain’s pre-exiting hunting and fishing laws.
On this point, however, the Ministry is unmoving: “Until now, burning a fox alive or drowning a wild boar calf had no criminal reproach. This law comes to put an end to impunity for animal abusers that, until now, was almost total in Spain,” a spokesperson said, stressing that the legislation change is absolutely “essential.”
Source: Murcia Today