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El Refugio

Spanish animal welfare association Justicia Animal (Animal Justice) reported 15 registered estates in Madrid where dozens of hunting dogs are being kept in deplorable conditions.

Justicia Animal president Matilde Cubillo stated they had reported the estates to the Nature Protection Service and the Community of Madrid and are asking for all the dogs to be seized.

According to Cubillo, dogs are forced to live in abhorrent conditions in small enclosures, injured, malnourished and chained.

The report comes after 52 dogs were rescued from a similar estate in the municipality of Villa del Prado at the end of last month. The dogs were found starving and living in tiny crowded enclosures without having the proper vaccinations and obligatory microchips. Some of the dogs had had their ears or tails illegally cut. Some were living next to dead bodies. Around 20 of the dogs had to be immediately hospitalized.

According to the report, the seized dogs were retired hunting dogs that were being tested to see if they ‘deserved another chance’. If they could survive without food or water, maybe they could be rented to work again.

The estate owner has since been arrested and is now facing up to one year in jail.

“Hunting is the main reason for dog abuse and abandonment in Spain. Until authorities start enforcing the law, hundreds of thousands of dogs will be abused, abandoned and killed,” said Nacho Paunero with animal protection organization El Refugio, which took some of the dogs in their care.

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