After years of campaigning and advocacy actions against circuses with animals, on 25 May 2018 the Slovak Parliament adopted a landmark amendment to the Veterinary Act introducing an ban on the use of wild animals in circuses, which prohibits both training and public performance of wild animals.
Sloboda Zvierat has campaigned for this achievement for 6 years. By handing out hundred thousands of leaflets, disseminating billboards and building up support via social media, Sloboda Zvierat rolled out a successful nationwide campaign which ensured 55 thousand signatures supporting the petition and strong public and private media coverage.
During the following months, the Ministry of agriculture and Sloboda Zvierat will jointly work on a decree-law which will define the list of species that cannot be use for entertaining.
The vote of the Slovak Parliament has also ensured another milestone change in Slovakia. The adopted amendment also prescribed the mandatory microchipping of all dogs that are 12 weeks old or that are changing owner for the first time. Unfortunately, the proposal put forward by Sloboda Zvierat to link puppies microchip numbers to their mothers in a central register of companion animals did not pass. This measure would have introduced a powerful mean to tackle the illegal trade of pets, bring a halt to the activities of many unscrupulous breeders and puppy dealers. However, the introduction of mandatory microchipping represents a big step forward a full traceability of pets across the EU.
Sloboda Zvierat thanks public and activists from all over Slovakia for the support received for obtaining this success, especially from the platforms Cirkus nie je sranda (Circus is not fun) and Nerob cirkus (Don´t do circus), and Eurogroup for Animals for the precious professional help.
Companion Animals Programme Officer | Eurogroup for Animals, Email firstname.lastname@example.org