Launched last week in the presence of Dra. Inês Real, Lisbon Council’s Purveyor for Animals, the PSP’s ‘Cruelty to Animals is a Crime’ campaign aims, according to a statement from Lisbon Town Hall, “not only to alert society about the matter, but also contribute institutionally towards social awareness about the mistreatment and abandonment of animals.”
The law was changed and reinstated on 29 August last year to make the abandonment or abuse of pets, namely dogs and cats, a crime punishable with penalties ranging from fines to prison sentences.
At the same time the PSP police force has created a new email address – – via which citizens can contact officers to clarify doubts about the new law and send complaints.
Officers are also, according to the statement, being given training “so that in all divisions the officers are equipped to provide the necessary support to those who need it and to start the proceedings required by applicable law.”
Meanwhile, in related news, it has emerged that over the nine months spanning October 2014 to June 2015, the GNR police force’s SEPNA nature protection brigade has registered an average of around eight complaints of animal neglect a day.
In a statement the GNR explained that over those nine months it had logged 2,239 complaints of animals being mistreated, which equates to around 248 complaints a month, or eight a day.
It also registered an average of around six cases of crimes being committed against animals a month over that period, during which 2,239 offence notices were issued.
In terms of complaints, January 2015 was the month in which the greatest number of denouncements was made (301), followed by May this year (298) and June (279).
Lisbon was the district where most complaints were logged, followed by Setúbal and Oporto.
The GNR operates a national, 24-hour environmental helpline (808 200 520) which can be used to make complaints regarding animal abuse.