Dear President Băsescu,
The Members of the European Parliament Intergroup on the Welfare and Conservation of Animals are deeply sorry for the recent death of a four-year-old boy who was attacked and mauled by a pack of stray dogs, after his grandmother had lost sight of him. This is a very sad casualty which should not have occurred.
The incident has raised again the unresolved issue of stray dogs in Bucharest and throughout Romania. We are aware that the dog that is being primarily held responsible for the attack had been released from a public shelter by a small animal rights organisation in Bucharest, thus violating the rule not to release a dog known to be aggressive. As a result, all animal welfare organisations are now blamed for protecting dogs more than people forgetting the very valuable work which has been done for years by organisations such as Vier Pfoten or Save the Dogs who have been running neutering campaigns and education programmes to fight against the abandonment of stray dogs.
In 2011 a large majority of the European Parliament adopted the by Daciana Octavia Sârbu, Adina-Ioana Vălean, Elisabeth Jeggle, Raül Romeva i Rueda, Janusz Wojciechowski on dog population management in the European Union which calls on Member States to adopt comprehensive dog population management strategies which include measures such as dog control and anti-cruelty laws, support for veterinary procedures including rabies vaccination and sterilisation as necessary to control the number of unwanted dogs, and the promotion of responsible pet ownership.
A large majority of Romanian MEPs have also signed this declaration. Your call for a systematic mass killing of strays goes against the will of the democratically elected Romanian MEPs. This is something which we consider as profoundly undemocratic and unacceptable in the European Union.
The Members of the Animal Welfare Intergroup undersigning this letter call on you not to promote the legalisation of systematic mass euthanasia of stray dogs. This will cause a horrible and useless massacre of dogs which goes against the values and objectives of the Treaty on the functioning of the European Union.
We hope that our voice will be heard and look forward to your reply.
Dan Jorgensen MEP, President
Sirpa Pietikäinen MEP, Vice-president
Andrea Zanoni MEP, Vice-president
Elisabeth Jeggle MEP, Honoaray President
Nadja Hirsch MEP, Vice-president
Jacqueline Foster, Vice-president