Have you met Deutscher Tierschutzbund?

Have you met Deutscher Tierschutzbund?

15 June 2022
Deutscher Tierschutzbund
Every month, we interview one of our member organisations about their work, main battles and achievements for animals. This month we are pleased to interview Jürgen Plinz, Treasurer of the Deutscher Tierschutzbund but also Board Member of Eurogroup for Animals.

 Tell us about your organisation?

Deutscher Tierschutzbund - The German Animal Welfare Federation - was founded in 1881 as the umbrella organisation for animal welfare associations and animal shelters in Germany. Today, its affiliates include 16 regional associations and more than 740 local animal welfare associations with over 550 animal shelters /rescue stations and represents the interests of 800,000 animal protectionists from all over Germany.

We are working to improve the living conditions of all animals: farm animals, animals in science, companions animals as well as animals in the wild.

In which countries do you work?

Our main focus is animal welfare in Germany, but there are also some projects abroad. Since 2000, for example, we have been committed to the protection of animals in Ukraine.

In 2005 we opened an animal welfare and neutering centre in Odessa in order to provide medical treatment and care for the city’s street dogs and countless feral cats. The concept of “catch, neuter, release” focuses on “helping them to help themselves”. It has stopped the killing of street animals in Odessa, breaking the cycle of continuous breeding.

The shelter serves as a model for other regions in southern and eastern Europe where animals are condemned to a life on the streets.

At the moment we are of course very concerned about the shelter and our colleagues in Odessa, who are still dealing with street animals and abandoned pets. In addition to our work in Odessa, we have some projects in Romania and Turkey.

Tell us more about you and your role?

Since 2007, I have been treasurer of Deutscher Tierschutzbund and thus a member of the executive committee. I am also an executive board member of Deutscher Tierschutzbund‘s Foundation.

Since 2020, I have represented Deutscher Tierschutzbund on the board of Eurogroup for Animals.

Jürgen Plinz

At the animal welfare association in Düren – a member assocation of Deutscher Tierschutzbund - I learned animal welfare from scratch: voluntary animal care, animal placement, information stands and public relations, editor-in-chief of the association‘s magazine, management of volunteers,...

From 1994, I was deputy chairman of the animal welfare association in Düren.

In 2019 I took over the chairmanship.

When and why did you join Eurogroup for Animals?

Deutscher Tierschutzbund is a founding member of the Eurogroup for Animals, so we are a member since 1980.

Due to the close cooperation between the countries, more and more relevant decisions are now being made at EU level. A large part of national legislation has its origins at European level.

Many animal welfare abuses - such as the illegal puppy trade, trade in exotic animals or animal transports across several countries - are EU-wide problems that can only be combated together. Our goal is therefore to achieve binding legal regulations so that animals are protected as well as possible throughout Europe.

What are your organisations main achievements?

Here are some examples of our major battles in recent months:

  • In Germany, the castration of piglets without anaesthesia has been banned since the beginning of 2021 - a success for which we fought for a long time.
  • After we kept up the pressure for a long time, the Bundestag decided to ban the killing of male chicks - the regulation is still insufficient, however.
  • Thanks to our criminal complaint against the Olympic rider Annika Schleu and her trainer for cruelty to animals, the World Pentathlon Federation wants to look for a suitable substitute for horse riding.
  • After the disastrous floods in western Germany, we are able, thanks to the support of our donors, to donate more than 300,000 euros to 52 animal protection and rescue organisations that defended the flood victims and their animals or were affected themselves.
  • After the federal elections, the coalition partners agreed on the introduction of a municipal identity check for online pet trade.
  • The identification and registration of dogs should also become compulsory. An important step in the fight against the illegal puppy trade, which we continue to fight against.

How can people support you?

The public can support our protest actions with their voice, share our campaigns and support our projects with:

We also give advice on how people can help animals in everyday life. Whether it's buying groceries, clothes or cosmetics, looking after animals on holiday or getting a pet.

Words to live by?

It is noticeable that animal protection has gained in importance in society and politics in recent years. It was a long road that still demands and will demand a lot of strength from us now and in the future. Together with our member associations, we promote animal welfare.

We raise our voice for the animals.