Denmark

B
Denmark
Recognising animal protection

Recognising animal protection

This theme examines recognition of animal sentience and the importance of animal protection as a societal value within the country, including government support for the Universal Declaration on Animal Welfare, prohibition of cruelty and protection for different categories of animals.

B

Formal recognition of animal sentience

There is legislation

Although Danish legislation does not specifically refer to animal sentience, the Animal Welfare Act 2013 (which consolidates previous legislation) does include aspects of animal sentience. The Animal Welfare Act 2013 requires anyone who keeps animals to ensure that they are treated with care taking into account their physiological, behavioural and health needs (Article 2). The legislation is based on the premise, outlined in Article 1, that animals should be treated properly and given the best possible protection against pain, suffering, distress, lasting injury and substantial disadvantage. This therefore covers both positive and negative physical and psychological aspects of sentience. It is not clear from the legislation whether this extends to fish and/or any invertebrates.

At European Union level, Article 13 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union recognises animal sentience and requires that Member States pay regard to animals’ welfare requirements in formulating and implementing European Union policies.

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

Denmark has a long history of animal protection. 1916 saw the introduction of the country’s first Animal Welfare Act, making it one of the first countries to enact such legislation.[1] Since that time animal protection legislation has been regularly updated. 

Today, the government is active in the field of animal protection, particularly with respect to farm animal welfare. Animal welfare matters feature prominently in the government’s work programme. Numerous statements in press releases and reports by government Ministers on a broad range of animal protection issues highlight the importance with which the government regards animal welfare.[2]

In 2010 the government established the Danish Centre for Animal Welfare, an initiative arising from collaboration between the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration, the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, Aarhus University and the University of Copenhagen. The stated aim of the Centre is to enable politicians, industry and other stakeholders to decide on initiatives to improve animal welfare.[3] The Centre initiates research projects and hosts an annual conference where results from the projects are shared and new welfare developments are highlighted.[4] Project themes from 2010 to 2012 included improving animal welfare in Denmark, methods for measuring animal welfare, communicating animal welfare, animal welfare and transport and animal welfare and poultry production.[5]

Although animal sentience is not specifically referenced in legislation, senior government representatives refer to it. For example, in 2014 the newly appointed Minister of Agriculture, Dan Jorgensen, highlighted the importance of animal welfare in an introductory interview featured on the government’s website, stating:  “Animals are sentient beings; they can feel stress and fear and pain, and we should never forget that.”[6]

 

[1] Ethical Eye: Animal Welfare, Council of Europe, 2006

[2] For example http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2006/bedre-forhold-fors%C3%B8gsdyr

[3] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[4] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[5] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[6]http://en.fvm.dk/fileadmin/user_upload/FVM.dk/Dokumenter/Ministeriet/Min...

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

The government has introduced policy and legislation to protect animals in line with international principles recognising animal sentience. However, there appear to be some barriers with respect to addressing the welfare of some animals. For example, fox farming is being phased out in the country on animal welfare grounds but mink farming continues. The government also permits the use of wild animals such as elephants in circus performances. Denmark has also acted in support of commercial whaling.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

There are enforcement mechanisms for the provisions of the Animal Welfare Act and other Danish animal protection legislation that arise out of the recognition of sentience.

D

Support for the Universal Declaration on Animal Welfare

There is partial government support

The government has not expressed individual national support for the UDAW.

However, in 2009 the 27 Agriculture Ministers of the European Council, including from Denmark, unanimously approved a statement on the UDAW encouraging the European Commission to support and initiate further international initiatives to raise awareness and create a greater consensus on animal welfare, and inviting the Member States and the Commission to support the UDAW initiative.[1]

Note: The Universal Declaration on Animal Welfare is a proposed formal international acknowledgment of a set of principles giving animal welfare due recognition among governments and the international community. An expression of support for the UDAW demonstrates a government’s commitment to working with the international community to improve animal welfare.

 

[1] http://www.consilium.europa.eu/uedocs/cms_Data/docs/pressdata/en/agricult/106877.pdf

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The government does not appear to have made any statements about the UDAW and the UDAW is not mentioned on its websites. The government does work to highlight the importance of animal protection to the public, for example, in its annual report on animal welfare. It is encouraged to make a formal pledge of in principle support for the UDAW.

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

There are not considered to be any significant barriers to the government taking steps to promote its support for the UDAW. 

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

There are no enforcement mechanisms relevant to this indicator.

A

Laws against causing animal suffering

There is legislation

Article 2 of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 requires anyone who keeps animals to ensure that they are treated with consideration, including housing, feeding, watering and care with regard for their physiological, ethological and health needs in agreement with established practical and scientific experience. This therefore creates a duty of care and encompasses failure to act as well as deliberate acts of abuse. 

Article 28 of the Act provides penalties for the overuse, neglect or reckless treatment of animals, and provides that in imposing penalties the court will take into account whether there is reckless or grossly negligent treatment and that imprisonment will be imposed if there is abuse.

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

In 2004 the Police Association developed a manual for police districts to strengthen enforcement of laws related to cruelty to animals and promote collaboration between regions and police districts to tackle the issue.[1] The Justice Minister commented that “Government will not accept that animals are treated badly.”[2]

The government has also produced guidance relating to various mammals, birds, reptiles and fish, available on the government’s website and on the website of the Danish Kennel Club.

 

[1]http://justitsministeriet.dk/sites/default/files/media/Pressemeddelelser/pdf/2004/Politiets_behandling_af_dyrevaernssager.pdf

[2] http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2004/politiet-f%C3%A5r-nye-redskaber-til-bek%C3%A6mpe-dyremishandling

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

The government invests resources in ensuring that animal welfare legislation is respected. For example, a dedicated Veterinary Taskforce has been established to target problematic issues. Inspections are carried out on farms, on roads and at slaughterhouses. There is evidence of action by the authorities and of prosecutions.[1] [2] There is some concern that sentences for animal cruelty may be too light to act as a deterrent and that too few people receive disqualifications from keeping animals.[3] However, the government has made it clear that animal cruelty should not be tolerated and has put into place mechanisms to control animal welfare and to ensure that action is taken.  A Veterinary Taskforce has also been established to run campaigns to improve animal welfare in areas that require action. There do not appear to be significant barriers to improvement here.

 

[1] http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/8059358.stm

[2] http://www.dagens.dk/krimi/plums-pony-er-ikke-alene-vi-vader-i-sager-om-...

[3] http://www.dagens.dk/krimi/plums-pony-er-ikke-alene-vi-vader-i-sager-om-dyremishandling

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Article 28 of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 provides that the overwork, neglect or reckless treatment of animals is punishable with a fine or up to one year imprisonment. In imposing penalties the court will take into account whether there is reckless or grossly negligent treatment, and imprisonment will be imposed if there is abuse. The courts have powers to make disqualification orders (Article 29).

A

Protecting animals used in farming

There is legislation

The general anti-cruelty provisions of the Animal Welfare Law 2013 apply to this category of animals.

General legislation relating to farm animals is contained in the Animal Welfare Law 2013 and in Act No. 432 relating to the keeping of animals. Article 3 requires that rooms or areas where animals are kept are designed in such a way that the animal’s needs are met and that they have freedom of movement for eating, drinking and resting, and protection from the elements. The Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries is given express powers to make secondary legislation on issues including housing (Article 4), implementation of European Union legislation (Article 4a), transport (Article 12) slaughter (Article 13(2)) and surgical mutilations (Article 14(3)). Secondary legislation addresses specific species and covers rearing, transport and slaughter of farm animals (for example, Executive Order No. 707 of 18 July 2000 on Minimum Standards for the Protection of Animals Kept for Farming Purposes). Legislation specifically dealing with farm animals has largely been introduced in order to comply with European Union requirements on legislation, although in some instances animal welfare legislation goes beyond European Union requirements (for example, in relation to minimum standards for pig rearing: Act No. 173 of 19 March 2001 on Outdoor Keeping of Pigs; enriched cages for laying hens: Executive Order No. 533 of 17 June 2002 on the Protec­tion of Laying Hens; and some aspects of calf husbandry: Executive Order No. 999 of 14 December 1993 on the Protection of Calves).[1]

In relation to transport, European Union Regulation 1/2005 on the protection of animals during transport and related operations has direct effect in the country. There are also domestic orders providing further detail (for example, Executive Order No. 1729 of 21 December 2006 on the Protection of Animals during Transport and Executive Order No. 1728 of 21 December 2006 on Train­ing in the Transportation of Animals). The government has produced guidelines (145 of 21 December 2006) on the European Union Regulation 1/2005.

In relation to slaughter, the government has implemented European Union requirements and has gone beyond these in removing the exemption for religious slaughter to take place without prior stunning; no slaughter may take place without stunning.

 

[1] Evaluation of the EU Policy on Animal Welfare & Possible Options for the Future, DG SANCO, Final Report, December 2010 http://www.eupaw.eu/docs/Final%20Report%20-%20EUPAW%20Evaluation.pdf

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

Danish legislation on the protection of farm animals goes beyond the minimum standards required by the European Union in many areas.

The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration publishes an annual report that includes the results of all animal welfare controls carried out on-farm, at slaughterhouses and during transport. This publication provides a focus for discussion of the status of farm animal welfare in the country.

In 2009 the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration’s Veterinary Task Force was established to put into place inspections and campaigns to tackle problematic animal welfare issues in the country by working with farmers and industry. In 2010 it ran specific campaigns to try to improve the situation with respect to issues including housing and treatment of sick and injured cows and on-farm killing in pig and cattle. In banning all slaughter without prior stunning, the government’s decision to put animal welfare concerns ahead of religious concerns attracted international attention.[1]

Every 20th herd or flock is inspected every year for compliance with legislation.[2] In 2012, 2,400 holdings were selected for on-farm welfare inspections.[3] Such inspections are always unannounced. Inspectors issue warnings or enforcement notices if they find problems. Inspectors report farmers to the police in cases of grossly negligent treatment of animals, for example, if animals are suffering from permanent injury or chronic disease but have not been moved to a hospital pen or have not been treated or examined by a veterinarian. Farmers may also be reported to the police when the case does not involve gross negligence, for example, if farmers have not rectified infringements despite an enforcement notice having been issued.

Danish transporters must be authorised by the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration if animals are to be transported more than 65 km in connection with an economic activity. There are also requirements regarding documentation and competency of those involved in transport.[4] The police carry out random checks on vehicles transporting animals. [5] In 2012 the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration advised that over 10 million farm animals, mainly pigs, were exported from Denmark and all of these were checked prior to departure to ensure they were fit and healthy.[6]

In 2010 self-policing of animal welfare on farms was introduced. Farmers with large herds of cattle or pigs must institute their own controls to ensure compliance with animal welfare legislation. They must also enter into mandatory veterinary advisory service contracts requiring a certain number of annual advisory visits by a veterinarian. The veterinary advisory service then audits the farmer’s own control measures during regular visits to the farm. The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration’s Veterinary Taskforce checks the veterinary audits. 

A veterinarian from the Regional Veterinary and Food Authorities inspects all animals transported to slaughterhouses before slaughter. The inspection includes an evaluation of whether the animals were fit for transport or if they have suffered or have been injured by being transported. The veterinarians at the slaughterhouse also perform spot checks of the means of transport. Veterinarians also inspect animals arriving at markets and assembly centres.

The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration’s Veterinary Taskforce takes action as a result of its campaigns focusing on specific issues. For example, in 2010 the Taskforce targeted the problem of lameness in cows and carried out inspections leading to the owners of 17 of 50 inspected herds being reported to the police or receiving enforcement notices or warnings for non-compliance with animal welfare regulations.[7] In another campaign regarding sow housing, sanctions were issued against 30 of 50 farms inspected because of infringement of regulations.

The results of all animal welfare controls are reported in an annual report by the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration.

 

[1] http://www.economist.com/blogs/erasmus/2014/02/religion-and-ritual-slaughter

[2] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[3]https://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/english/Aboutus/Documents/Faktaark%202...

[4]http://ec.europa.eu/food/animal/welfare/seminars/docs/290212_d2s4a_6_gre...

[5]http://ec.europa.eu/food/animal/welfare/seminars/docs/290212_d2s4a_6_gre...

[6]https://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/english/Aboutus/Documents/Faktaark%202...

[7] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

There is evidence that the government is investing resources into animal welfare controls and also into mechanisms aimed at preventing problems by raising awareness on specific issues via the Veterinary Taskforce.

Inspections of herds and flocks in 2010 resulted in sanctions for non-compliance with animal welfare legislation being imposed against 21% of inspected cattle herds, 49% of inspected pig herds, and 22% of inspected broiler farms.[1] These results demonstrate that there is still much room for improvement of animal welfare on-farm. It is also noted that in 2013 the European Commission called on Denmark via a letter of formal notice to require the government to take action to implement the requirements of Directive 2008/120 regarding housing of pregnant sows.[2]

However, there are no apparent significant barriers to improvement in this area and so it is hoped that further progress can be made.

 

[1] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[2] http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-13-135_en.htm

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Article 28 of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 provides that the overwork, neglect or reckless treatment of animals is punishable with a fine or up to one year imprisonment. In imposing penalties the court will take into account whether there is reckless or grossly negligent treatment, and imprisonment will be imposed if there is abuse. Breach of the requirement to provide appropriate living conditions under Article 3, but not amounting to the stronger offence in Article 28, is punishable with a fine or imprisonment of up to four months. It is an aggravating circumstance if done in the course of business, including transport (Article 28(7)). The courts also have powers to make disqualification orders (Article 29).

Secondary legislation makes provision for penalties for infringement, and Article 28(5) and 28(6) of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 fix the maximum penalty under such regulation at a fine or imprisonment of up to four months.

B

Protecting animals in captivity

There is legislation

The general anti-cruelty provisions of the Animal Welfare Law 2013 apply to this category of animals.

Article 3 requires that rooms or areas where animals are kept are designed in such a way that the animal’s needs are met and that they have freedom of movement for eating, drinking and resting, and protection from the elements.

Article 10 of the Act empowers the Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries to introduce rules to prohibit the keeping of animals that may be dangerous or cause fear or which cannot easily be kept in captivity in an animal-welfare-friendly manner. Article 17 prohibits the use of animals for shows, circus performances, film footage or similar if the animal would incur significant disadvantage, prohibits the display of animals in travelling menageries and requires permission from the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration for the establishment of zoos and wildlife parks. The Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries has power under Article 17(4) to establish rules for the keeping of animals in circuses, amusement parks and similar establishments. Executive Order no. 1023 on the licensing and inspection of zoos of 12/12/2002 transposes European Union Zoo Directive 1999/22. Paragraph 11 states that the size, layout and design of animal installations must be adapted to the species in a way that meets their physiological and health needs as well as the opportunity to express natural behaviour. Zoos also require veterinary approval under the Notice of Veterinary Registration of Zoos issued by the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries of January 12, 2010. Requirements for approval include design and operational aspects and a requirement for a supervising veterinarian. The Law on State Subsidies to Zoos of April 12, 2000 establishes a framework for the granting of subsidies to zoos. In order to obtain and maintain government subsidies zoos must fulfil conditions including promoting the dissemination of knowledge about wild animals and their conservation and to support research and teaching. Statutory Order no. 1021 of 2002 Notice of Private Holding of Special Animals prohibits the private keeping of a number of species on the basis that they are animals that can create fear, or animals, which should not be kept for animal welfare reasons. This includes all primates, with the exception of marmosets and tamarins. Order no. 1022 of 2002 on the Commercial Trade of Animals makes it illegal to sell animals listed in the Annex of Order no. 1021.

Fur farming is still practiced in the country. Executive Order No. 1734 of 22 December 2006 on the Protection of Fur Animals and Act No. 466 of 12 June 2009 on a Ban on Fox Farming made a ban on fox farming with a long phasing out period, which is to 2017 for most farmers and not until 2023 for two particular fur farmers.

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

Article 26 of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 establishes a special council on animal welfare issues. The government has also set up a council relating to “special animals”, whose work includes the approval of zoological facilities.[1] However the composition of this council is of only three members who currently include a veterinarian and the scientific director at Copenhagen Zoo. The council does not appear to include an animal welfare or behaviour expert and there is no requirement for such experts to be consulted.

2014 saw worldwide attention on Copenhagen Zoo following its decision to euthanise a healthy giraffe because it was not suitable for breeding.[2] The zoo’s decision stimulated considerable ethics debate and highlighted the importance to animal welfare of breeding and parenting. However Denmark has not attracted international attention concerning animal welfare in its zoos. The country’s zoos have also not been selected for surveys that have assessed compliance with European Union zoo legislation (for example, the 2011 EU Zoo Inquiry), which suggests that the European Commission does not have particular concerns about compliance with European Union legislation.

The government has introduced a requirement for the purchaser of any animal to be provided with care instructions and such instructions have been prepared for a wide variety of species. The government has also taken action to prevent the keeping of some animals by private keepers, for example, most primates.

Since 2010 animal welfare on farms with fur animals, in particular mink, has received particular attention from the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration. In 2010, all fur farms were inspected, and in both 2011 and 2012, half were inspected. There is controversy in the country concerning the continued existence of a fur farming industry that supplies some one third of the world’s factory farmed mink.[3] The current Minister of Agriculture opposed the industry before his appointment and has subsequently said that now he is minister he will need to find a compromise “but minks are fragile and intelligent animals, and I want to make sure we treat them with respect. People will argue that by definition, fur is not a very animal welfare–attentive sector. But if you look at what has been done here in the last couple of years, there’s no doubt our standards have improved significantly”.[4]

 

[1]http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Dyr/Dyrevelfaerd/Dyrevelf%C3%A6rdsr%C3%...

[2] http://www.usnews.com/news/newsgram/articles/2014/02/10/danish-zoo-kills...

[3] http://www.animallaw.info/articles/ddusfur.htm

[4] http://modernfarmer.com/2014/03/ask-ag-minister-denmarks-dan-jorgensen/

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

There are not considered to be any barriers to improving the welfare of animals in zoo captivity. A specific advisory body exists to support the government on this area and legislation also gives power to prohibit the private keeping of certain species.

However there are on-going issues with poor welfare on fur farms in the country and this shows that there are still barriers to improving animal welfare for this category of animals. For example, during an inspection that encompassed all mink farms violations of animal welfare legislation were found in half of the establishments.[1]

 

[1] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Article 28 of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 provides that the overwork, neglect or reckless treatment of animals is punishable with a fine or up to one year imprisonment. In imposing penalties the court will take into account whether there is reckless or grossly negligent treatment, and imprisonment will be imposed if there is abuse. Breach of the requirement to provide appropriate living conditions under Article 3, but not amounting to the stronger offence in Article 28, is punishable with a fine or imprisonment of up to four months. It is an aggravating circumstance if done in the course of business, including transport (Article 28(7)). The courts also have powers to make disqualification orders (Article 29).

Secondary legislation makes provision for penalties for infringement, and Article 28(5) and 28(6) of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 fix the maximum penalty under such regulation at a fine or imprisonment of up to four months.

The police are responsible for licensing and annual inspection of zoos according to Order 1023 of 12 December 2002. They may undertake inspections together with the council on keeping “special animals”. Penalties for non-compliance with legislation include the closure of zoos. Other penalties include a fine or imprisonment for up to four months unless a higher penalty is warranted under other legislation.

B

Protecting companion animals

There is legislation

The general anti-cruelty provisions of the Animal Welfare Law 2013 apply to this category of animals.

Article 3 requires that rooms or areas where animals are kept are designed in such a way that the animal’s needs are met and that they have freedom of movement for eating, drinking and resting, and protection from the elements.

Denmark has ratified the European Convention for the Protection of Pet Animals, and the Animal Welfare Act 2013 covers the provisions of this Convention concerning issues including commercial trade, surgical interventions, killing and rules on stray animals. 

The Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries has powers to make rules on the treatment of dogs and cats, including for the capture and killing of cats (Article 11), surgical interventions (Article 14), and information to be given to purchasers of animals (Article 18).

Secondary legislation addresses some specific issues relating to companion animals. The keeping of certain dog breeds is prohibited under the Act on Dogs No. 254 of 8 March 2013, for example, pit bulls.[1] A Notice on the Transfer of Kittens No 1025 of 29 October 2009 imposes penalties on anyone who sells or otherwise transfers or purchases or otherwise acquires kittens younger than the age of 12 weeks, with the exception of orphaned kittens provided to an animal shelter. Decree No. 1169 of 18 October 2010 prohibits the partial or total removal of dogs’ vocal chords. Decree No. 1340 of 28 November 2010 amending Executive Order No. 1466 of 12 December 2007 on commercial trade and breeding of dogs and kennels and dog shelters also entered into force in 2013, requiring written instructions on the husbandry and care of dogs to be given to purchasers of dogs. Executive Order No. 1348 of 28 November 2010 amending Order No. 1022 of 12 December 2002 on the commercial trade of animals (pet stores) entered into force in 2014 and requires written instructions on the sound husbandry and care of all pet animals to be given to the purchaser.

Article 11(2) of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 prohibits the exhibition of dogs with docked tails or cropped ears, subject to exceptions.

 

[1] https://www.retsinformation.dk/forms/R0710.aspx?id=145381

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The government promotes the humane care and treatment of companion animals. For example, in 2004 the Animal Ethics Council was instructed to examine the welfare of companion animals in Denmark.[1] In 2008 the Council reported its findings, concluding that the main reason for animal welfare problems in private homes was ignorance of the needs of animals. The Minister of Justice carried out a consultation on the recommendations of the Council, involving relevant organisations and authorities.[2] This process resulted in the introduction of legislation requiring care information to be given to purchasers of animals. Since that time instructions for the care of many mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish have been developed and are available on the government’s website. If a pet shop wishes to sell an animal for which a care guide is not yet available the pet store must prepare instructions for approval. To further promote the responsible purchase and care of dogs the government’s Veterinary and Food Administration launched a campaign “Check the puppy before you act” with the Danish Veterinary Association and the Danish Kennel Club regarding the purchase of puppies with a dedicated website.[3]

The police carry out enforcement of the law and the government has worked to improve enforcement of laws related to cruelty to animals and animal welfare. The Police Association has developed a manual to assist local police forces with respect to animal welfare issues.[4]

 

[1] http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2008/ud...

[2] http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2008/ud...

[3] http://tjekhvalpen.dk/default.aspx

[4] http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2004/politiet-f%C3%A5r-nye-redskaber-til-bek%C3%A6mpe-dyremishandling

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

There are not considered to be any significant barriers to improving the welfare of companion animals. The government has demonstrated the importance with which it regards the issue. The government has invested in developing care instructions to provide animal owners and keepers with information that promotes good animal welfare.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Article 28 of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 provides that the overwork, neglect or reckless treatment of animals is punishable with a fine or up to one year imprisonment. In imposing penalties the court will take into account whether there is reckless or grossly negligent treatment, and imprisonment will be imposed if there is abuse. Breach of the requirement to provide appropriate living conditions under Article 3, but not amounting to the stronger offence in Article 28, is punishable with a fine or imprisonment of up to four months. It is an aggravating circumstance if done in the course of business, including transport (Article 28(7)). The courts also have powers to make disqualification orders (Article 29).

Secondary legislation makes provision for penalties for infringement. For example, the penalty for violating Executive Order No. 1348 of 28 November 2010 on the commercial trade of animals (pet stores) is a fine or imprisonment for up to four months unless a more severe penalty is prescribed under other laws. Article 28(5) and 28(6) of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 fix the maximum penalty under secondary regulations at a fine or imprisonment of up to four months.

B

Protecting animals used for draught and recreation

There is legislation

The general anti-cruelty provisions of the Animal Welfare Law 2013 apply to this category of animals.

Article 3 requires that rooms or areas where animals are kept are designed in such a way that the animal’s needs are met and that they have freedom of movement for eating, drinking and resting, and protection from the elements.

Article 17 prohibits the use of animals for shows, circus performances, film footage or similar if the animal would incur significant disadvantage and prohibits the display of animals in travelling menageries. The Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries has power under Article 17(4) to establish rules for the keeping of animals in circuses, amusement parks and similar establishments. The Animal Welfare Act was amended in 2009 to include this provision, overturning the prohibition under previous legislation on the use of wild animals in circuses,[1] and following recommendations from a working group set up by the Ministry of Justice in 2008.[2]  Zoo legislation is applicable to the only facility in the country utilising marine mammals for entertainment. The Fjord and Baelt Centre has a special permit to keep porpoises that were rescued after becoming stranded and are now used in shows.[3]

There is specific legislation relating to horses, the Keeping of Horses Act 251 of 8 March 2013, applying to all horses except those kept for scientific or research purposes. This sets minimum requirements for the keeping of horses.

 

[1] https://www.retsinformation.dk/Forms/R0710.aspx?id=125407

[2] http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2008/ud...

[3] http://www.fjord-baelt.dk/index.php/viden/forskning

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

Although there are some positive provisions in current legislation, the government permits wild animals such as elephants to be used in circuses, which may work contrary to efforts to make animal welfare concerns a mainstream concern of society in relation to the use of animals for entertainment and recreation. In 2009 the Minister of Justice acted on recommendations from a working group to overturn a previous prohibition on the use of wild animals in circuses, replacing the ban with an enabling provision allowing the Minister of Justice to lay down rules on the keeping and showing of animals in circuses, amusement parks and similar establishments. The members appointed on the recommendation of the Ethics Council opposed the use of wild animals in circuses on ethical and animal welfare grounds whilst the members appointed by the National Police, Circus Director Association, Association of Amusement Parks in Denmark and the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries considered that a circus should be able to provide for the welfare needs of animals such as elephants and sea lions.[1]

 

[1] http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2008/ud...

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

The weakening of legislation that aimed to prevent the use of wild animals in circuses and the consequent legitimisation of this activity represents a barrier to improving animal welfare for this category of animals. The use of marine mammals that were rescued for rehabilitation in entertainment also suggests that there are barriers to improving animal welfare. However, the government has put into place advisory councils to examine issues in the light of scientific knowledge and it may be that this is an issue on which progress can be made.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Article 28 of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 provides that the overwork, neglect or reckless treatment of animals is punishable with a fine or up to one year imprisonment. In imposing penalties the court will take into account whether there is reckless or grossly negligent treatment, and imprisonment will be imposed if there is abuse. Breach of the requirement to provide appropriate living conditions under Article 3, but not amounting to the stronger offence in Article 28, is punishable with a fine or imprisonment of up to four months. It is an aggravating circumstance if done in the course of business, including transport (Article 28(7)). The courts also have powers to make disqualification orders (Article 29).

Secondary legislation makes provision for penalties for infringement. For example, with respect to the law on horses the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries may issue warnings and enforcement notices and penalties include fines or imprisonment for up to four months. Article 28(5) and 28(6) of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 fix the maximum penalty under secondary regulations at a fine or imprisonment of up to four months.

A

Protecting animals used in scientific research

There is legislation

It appears that the general anti-cruelty provisions of the Animal Welfare Law 2013 apply to this category of animals. Article 3 requires that rooms or areas where animals are kept are designed in such a way that the animal’s needs are met and that they have freedom of movement for eating, drinking and resting, and protection from the elements. It is not clear whether this applies to animals used in scientific research.

The government has implemented European Union legislation concerning animals used in scientific research, including by the Proclamation of Law on Animal Experimentation No. 253 of 8 March 2013. This protects vertebrates (including in the last third of fetal development) and, on a trial basis, squid. The use of these animals for scientific or educational purposes must be authorised by the Animal Experiments Inspectorate where the use is likely to be associated with pain, suffering, distress or lasting harm equivalent to or stronger than the introduction of a needle (Article 1). The Animal Experiments Inspectorate is empowered to refuse permission for animal experiments that are not deemed to be of significant benefit to warrant the use of animals (Article 1(5)). Experiments must be designed in a way that is likely to lead to the use of the fewest animals, cause the least pain, suffering, distress or lasting harm and which are most likely to provide satisfactory results (Article 5(2)). To the extent possible, species which are less prone to experience pain, suffering, distress or lasting harm should be used and where possible the trial should be ended at a humane end point rather than at death (Article 6(1),(2)). Animals cannot be used when other methods are equally appropriate (Article 6(3)). Article 7 makes provisions for the use of anaesthesia. Cosmetic testing is prohibited under Article 1(4).

Article 10 establishes that the Council for Animal Experiments manages the Animal Experiments Inspectorate. The membership of the Council for Animal Experiments to include a number of members of which four must be appointed according to the opinions of animal welfare organisations. Article 18 empowers the Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, after consulting the Animal Experiments Inspectorate, to establish rules covering a variety of areas including on the procurement of animals for experimental and other scientific purposes.

The Act on Cloning and Genetic Engineering with Animals and Related Matters No. 550 of 24 June 2013 provides for the licensing of activities involving cloning or other genetic engineering involving animals. Licences are granted by the Animal Experiments Agency and cloning and genetic engineering must be carried out in accordance with specific rules laid down by the Act regulating experiments on animals.

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The decisions of the Animal Experiments Inspectorate and the associated applications to conduct animal experiments appear on the authority’s website on which annual reports on animal experimentation in the country since 2000 may be found. [1]
 In 2006 the government announced the creation of a platform to promote alternatives to animal testing, the Danish Consensus Platform for 3R Alternatives to Animal Experimentation. Members were appointed by the Minister of Justice after consultation with stakeholders including industry and animal welfare campaigners.

In June 2013 the Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries established the Danish 3R-Center in a unique collaboration with both the pharmaceutical industry and animal welfare organisations to focus on alternatives to animal testing and on creating better conditions for laboratory animals.[2]

The Ministry’s website explains that the name of the Center is derived from the English terms replacement, reduction and refinement, and that these are the aims of the Center’s work.[3]

 

[1] www.dyreforsoegstilsynet.dk

[2] http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/english/Animal/Pages/The-Danish-3R-Cent...

[3] http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Dyr/Dyrevelfaerd/Sider/Danmarks-3R-Cent...

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

The government is committed to reducing the number of animals used in scientific research and is investing in research to develop alternatives to the use of animals. For example, researchers may apply for research grants of up to 500,000 DKR from the 3R-Center. The government has been effective in engaging with stakeholders with respect to reducing, replacing and refining the use of animals in scientific research. There are not considered to be any barriers to further progress.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Under Article 11 of the Proclamation of Law on Animal Experimentation No. 253 of 8 March 2013, the Council for Animal Experiments may at any time without a warrant but with proof of identity gain access to test facilities and other premises where animals are placed in order to carry out inspections or supervision. Article 12 empowers the Council to order that specific experiments may only be carried out when members are present to supervise.

Penalties for violating the provisions of the law are punishable by a fine or imprisonment for up to 4 months unless other laws prescribe a higher penalty (Article 16). Enforcement authorities may also revoke the authorisation for animal experimentation (Article 17).

B

Protecting the welfare of wild animals

There is legislation

It appears that the general anti-cruelty provisions of the Animal Welfare Law 2013 apply to this category of animals.

The main law governing activities affecting wild animals, such as hunting, is the Wildlife Management Act No. 114 of 28 January 1997.[1] The purpose of the law includes conservation, management of wildlife resources and regulation of hunting and ensuring that hunting takes place “according to ecological and ethical principles” (Article 1). Those who hunt must obtain a licence (Article 39). Welfare aspects are covered by Article 22 which provides that hunting must not be carried out in such a way that it exposes the animals to unnecessary suffering, and Article 23 which provides that animals can only be killed with firearms, thus prohibiting the use of poisons or traps. The law establishes basic hunting regulations, protected areas, open seasons and licensing requirements. The law empowers the Minister of the Environment and Energy to regulate the release, capture and keeping of wild animals, the trading and possession of wild animals and their parts and collecting, trading and possession of eggs of game birds. Rules may also be established to ensure that only persons or companies that the Minister authorised may treat and care for injured wildlife.

 

[1] http://faolex.fao.org/docs/texts/den19314.doc

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The government has established a Wildlife Management Council, which advises the Ministry of the Environment on issues concerning hunting and wildlife. The government has banned very cruel forms of hunting, such as the use of poison, traps and dogs (although these are punishable only with fines, where no other law applies a stronger penalty), and has introduced tests for licence applicants to ensure effective shooting so as to avoid unnecessary suffering in hunted animals.

The government reports that currently 45 species can be hunted and that illegal hunting is not considered to be a problem in the country.[1] Over 100 nature reserves have been created under the Hunting and Wildlife Management Act.[2] More than 90 per cent of these areas (about 294.000 ha). The rest are found in fresh water (30.000 ha) or on land (7.000 ha).

Although this report does not extend to the regions of Greenland and the Faroe Islands, it is noted that the Danish government represents Greenland and the Faroe Islands at meetings of the International Whaling Commission, and that the government has supported initiatives to lift the ban on commercial whaling.[3]

 

[1] http://www.cbd.int/doc/world/dk/dk-nr-04-en.pdf

[2] http://www.cbd.int/doc/world/dk/dk-nr-04-en.pdf

[3] http://cphpost.dk/news/whale-quotas-create-rift-between-greenland-and-de...

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

Although the current legislation on hunting contains useful welfare-related provisions, the legitimisation of hunting suggests that there may be barriers to improvement here. More significantly, the defence by the Danish government of commercial whaling and sealing activities demonstrates a substantial barrier to improving animal welfare for this category of animals.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Article 28 of the Animal Welfare Act 2013 provides that the reckless treatment of animals is punishable with a fine or up to one year imprisonment. In imposing penalties the court will take into account whether there is reckless or grossly negligent treatment, and imprisonment will be imposed if there is abuse.

Article 54 of the Wildlife Management Act No. 114 of 28 January 1997 provides that, unless a higher penalty is prescribed by other laws, breach of the welfare-related provisions in Articles 22 and 23 is punishable with a fine. Hunting licenses may be withdrawn for offences including upon conviction of deliberate cruelty under animal protection legislation.

Governance structures and systems

Governance structures and systems

This theme examines government commitment to improving animal protection. This includes whether there is allocation of responsibility, accountability and resources within government.

A

Government accountability for animal welfare

There is legislation

The Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries, the Ministry of Justice are the main bodies responsible for animal welfare legislation in Denmark. They work with advisory bodies established under the Animal Welfare Act: the Animal Welfare Council, the Ethical Council for Animals, and the Council concerning the Keeping of Special Animals.[1] The Legal Affairs Committee of the Danish Parliament, one of 26 standing committees, has animal welfare listed as part of its responsibilities.[2] The Committee holds public hearings and consultations on animal welfare issues.[3] In 2011 responsibility for animal experimentation and the Animal Experiments Inspectorate was transferred from the Minister of Justice to the Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries. The Animal Experiments Inspectorate consists of a Secretariat and the Board of Animal Experiments. The Board consists of one chairman and 10 additional members appointed by a number of different stakeholders.

The Danish Animal Welfare Act 2013 gives powers to the Minister of Justice and the Minister of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries to make secondary legislation. The Animal Welfare Act 2013 also gives enforcement powers to the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration and the Police Director.

 

[1]http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Dyr/Dyrevelfaerd/Dyrevelf%C3%A6rdsr%C3%...

[2]http://www.thedanishparliament.dk/Publications/Standing%20Orders%20of%20...

[3]For example http://www.ft.dk/folketinget/udvalg_delegationer_kommissioner/udvalg/ret... b93 og b 102.aspx

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The government promotes the importance of animal protection on its websites, in press statements and by its actions. [1] The various Councils have very active programmes with respect to investigating and reporting on issues. Their activities involve key stakeholders.

The Animal Welfare Council advises the Minister regarding legislation to be introduced under the Animal Welfare Act. This Council consists of a chairman and two other qualified experts in animal welfare issues. The Minister for Food appoints the members on the basis of recommendations from the animal welfare movement. In recent years the Animal Welfare Council has published opinions on issues including religious slaughter, keeping animals outside in winter, tail docking of lambs and castration of piglets, lambs and kids.

The Ethics Council’s role is to provide an ethical assessment of animal welfare issues.[2] The Council was established in 1992 and consists of 12 members of whom five are appointed after consultation with animal welfare organisations, farmers' organisations and the Consumer Council. In recent years the Council has published opinions on issues including cloning, fur production, biotechnology in animals, bow hunting, angling, pest management and the breeding of dogs and cats.

The work of the Council on the Keeping of Special Animals involves the drafting of opinions for the country’s police chiefs regarding private ownership of dangerous animals, participation in zoo licensing and assisting in cases involving permits for commercial trade in animals.[3]

The Danish Centre for Animal Welfare promotes the importance of animal welfare, for example, through its research projects and its annual conference.[4] The stated aim of the Centre is to enable “politicians, industry and other stakeholders to decide on initiatives to improve animal welfare”.[5]

Initiatives of the Danish Animal Welfare Centre also have the potential to influence international animal welfare development.[6] Project themes from 2010 to 2012 included improving animal welfare in Denmark, methods for measuring animal welfare, communicating animal welfare, animal welfare and transport and animal welfare and poultry production.[7]

The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration has a number of divisions, some of which are involved in issues concerning animal protection, including the Animal Health Division, which is responsible for issues including trade of live animals; the Animal Welfare and Veterinary Medicine Division, which is responsible for animal welfare; and the International Trade Division, responsible for the import and export of live animals and travelling with pet animals. The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration, together with universities, established the Danish Centre for Animal Welfare with the aim of improving animal welfare in Denmark. The government provides funding, which has been agreed through to 2016 according to the Centre’s website. The government also funds the 3R-Center which aims to reduce the use of animals in experiments.

 

[1] For example http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2006/bedre-forhold-fors%C3%B8gsdyr

[2]http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Dyr/Dyrevelfaerd/Dyrevelfærdsråd og generelle udtalelser/Det-Dyreetiske-Raad/Sider/default.aspx

[3] http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Dyr/Dyrevelfaerd/Dyrevelfærdsråd og generelle udtalelser/Sider/Rådet-vedrørende-Hold-af-Særlige-Dyr-.aspx

[4] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[5] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[6]https://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Dyr/Dyrevelfaerd/Videncenter_for_dyrev...

[7] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

There are not considered to be any barriers to improving animal welfare through allocation of responsibility to government bodies. However it is noted that the Kingdom of Denmark includes the Faroes and Greenland, which are outside the scope of this current report but which face particular welfare challenges with respect to permitted activities including whaling, sealing and dog sledding.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Responsibilities of relevant government bodies are set out in primary and secondary legislation.

Animal welfare standards

Animal welfare standards

This theme examines whether the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE)’s animal welfare standards have been incorporated into law or policy, the extent of engagement with the OIE on animal welfare issues, and whether the government publishes reports on progress in improving animal welfare.

C

Engagement with the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE)

There is policy

The website of the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries highlights that the International Coordination Division of the Danish Veterinary and Food Administration is responsible for participating actively in the work of international organisations, including the OIE, in support of Danish Veterinary and Food Administration objectives, which are to ensure protection of consumer safety and animal health and welfare.[1] Under the Danish Animal Health Strategy, the Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Fisheries highlights international relationships, including with the OIE, as one of its top five objectives.[2]

The OIE’s guiding principles and standards are covered by the legislation and policy of the government and implemented nationally, and government websites highlight a working relationship with the OIE on issues concerning animal health.[3] Denmark also has an OIE collaborating centre engaging on the issue of research and training in population animal health diagnosis and surveillance systems.[4][5] However, there does not appear to be specific government engagement with the OIE with respect to improving animal welfare.

The government has provided funding to the OIE to support standard and capacity development in developing countries with respect to assisting developing countries to implement OIE sanitary and phytosanitary standards.[6] One of the goals of the project is to strengthen national veterinary services, which are in charge of the implementation of the OIE’s standards at national level.

 

[1] http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/english/Aboutus/Organization/Head_Offic...

[2]http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/english/Animal/AnimalHealth/Prevention_...

[3]http://www.oie.int/wahis_2/public/wahid.php/Reviewreport/semestrial/review?year=2013&semester=1&wild=0&country=DNK&this_country_code=DNK&detailed=1

[4] http://www.vet.dtu.dk

[5] http://www.oie.int/our-scientific-expertise/collaborating-centres/list-o...

[6] http://www.oie.int/en/for-the-media/press-releases/detail/article/the-st...

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The government has a very active animal welfare programme and works with key stakeholders to improve animal welfare, and has established national centres for animal welfare that focus on issues for which there are OIE standards.  

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

Given the scope of the government’s engagement with the OIE on animal health issues, it is not considered that there are any barriers to working with the OIE to improve animal welfare internationally, regionally and nationally. Denmark is a member of the OIE’s Regional Platform for Europe, which presents a potential opportunity for increasing collaboration on animal welfare issues. The government has demonstrated that it is actively working to improve animal welfare and has much to share with other countries. It is already providing support for valuable programmes in many countries. For example, its funding of the OIE’s Standards and Trade Facility should promote animal health and welfare in developing countries.

The government is encouraged to consider the inclusion of the aim of improving animal welfare in its international programmes.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

There are no enforcement mechanisms relevant to this indicator.

A

OIE animal welfare standards

There is legislation

The OIE’s guiding principles for animal welfare are incorporated by legislation in Denmark including by the Animal Welfare Act 2013, which reflects the principles of the Five Freedoms. The law on animal experimentation is based on the Three Rs and the government supports research into alternatives to the use of animals.

The government has also transposed European Union Regulations and Directives which cover the areas included within the OIE standards.

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The government is an international leader in animal welfare, for example, with its investment in the Danish Centre for Animal Welfare and the launch of the 3R-Center to reduce the use of animals in experiments. The country has assigned responsibility for animal welfare at high levels and provides resources to improve animal welfare and to fulfil its commitments with respect to the European Union and the OIE.

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

The country scores highly on World Governance Indicators and has a solid foundation and a long history of continuing to improve animal welfare and providing international leadership. There are no reasons to consider that there would be significant barriers to the government continuing to implement OIE standards within its legislation.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

There are enforcement mechanisms (fines or imprisonment) for the legislation which incorporates the OIE’s guiding principles and standards.

C

Reporting on progress

There is legislation with partial application

The Proclamation of Law on Animal Experimentation No. 253 of 8 March 2013 includes in Article 14 the requirement for publication of an annual report on animal experimentation to be published by the Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries.

The government also produces excellent reports on other animal welfare issues. The Danish Veterinary and Food Administration produces a report every year containing the outcomes of animal welfare control on farms, in slaughterhouses and during transport. The reports are all available on its website.[1] The reports include tables showing the results of all the official animal welfare control in the country carried out on farms, during transport and slaughter. Fact sheets focus on infringement levels for various production systems and animals species.[2]

The Ministry of Justice publishes very regular newsletters with news and updates on animal welfare legislation and initiatives.[3]

The government also supports the Danish Animal Welfare Centre, which holds an annual conference to share the results of its research projects and to draw attention to developments in animal welfare.[4]

 

[1] http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Leksikon/Sider/Velf%C3%A6rdskontrol.aspx

[2] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[3] http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/nyhedsbrev/2014

[4] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The publication of annual reports containing information, for example, on the outcomes of all animal welfare controls in farms, during transport and at slaughter farms facilitates discussion of animal welfare problems. The availability of annual data also enables measures to be put into place to tackle and reduce animal suffering. The government has established a Veterinary Taskforce to target issues revealed to be causing animal welfare concern.

Whilst the government has yet to produce a co-ordinated report covering all animal protection issues affecting the country it is supporting work by the Danish Animal Welfare Centre regarding data collection. Project themes for the Centre from 2010 to 2012 included improving animal welfare in Denmark, improving animal welfare control, methods for measuring animal welfare and communicating animal welfare demonstrating the government’s commitment to monitor and to improve animal welfare.[1] One project was carried out to establish an overview of Danish databases of relevance to evaluation of animal welfare.[2] This collection of data is extremely important as it may be used to inform a base-line against which progress in improving animal welfare can be measured.[3] The Centre advises on its website that it aims to contribute to the improvement of animal welfare by “collecting and disseminating knowledge about animal welfare, creating a comprehensive overview of the welfare state in Denmark and in European countries, with which we often compare ourselves”.[4] 

 

[1] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[2] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

[3]http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Dyr/Dyrevelfaerd/Videncenter_for_dyreve...

[4] http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/Dyr/Dyrevelfaerd/Videncenter_for_dyreve...

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

There are no apparent barriers to improvement here.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

While some reporting requirements are set out in legislation, the reporting work of the Danish Animal Welfare Centre is based in policy rather than in law. The government is encouraged to introduce a comprehensive animal welfare strategy with associated legally mandated reporting requirements.

Providing humane education

Providing humane education

This theme examines whether issues of animal care and protection are included in the national education system at primary and secondary level, and comments on whether animal welfare issues such as humane handling form part of veterinary medicine education.

E

Education on animal care and protection

There is no policy or legislation

There is no evidence of animal care and protection being included in the national education system.

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

Although animal care and protection are not formally included in the national education system, the government does participate in some activities to promote knowledge about animals. In its fifth national report to the Convention on Biological Diversity in 2014 the government advised that its national Green Flag, Green School project focuses on active education for children on biodiversity and sustainability, and that the Nature Agency has published educational material for all classes in primary school.[1]

 

[1] http://www.cbd.int/doc/world/dk/dk-nr-05-en.pdf

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

Given political will, the issue of animal care and protection could be included within the curriculum, and within the government’s various initiatives regarding environmental and sustainability education. There are not considered to be any significant barriers to the government taking action in this respect.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

There are no enforcement mechanisms relevant to this indicator.

Promoting communication and awareness

Promoting communication and awareness

This theme examines whether there is government consultation and engagement with relevant stakeholders on animal protection issues, such as the development of new legislation and policy and the licensing of scientific research using animals.

A

Consultation with stakeholders

There is legislation

The Animal Welfare Act 2013 obliged the Minister for Food, Agriculture and Fisheries to establish three councils with respect to Ethics, Animal Welfare and the Keeping of Special Animals. The legislation includes requirements for the members of these advisory bodies to include representatives of agricultural and animal welfare organisations as well as other qualified experts. The Animal Welfare Council, for example, consists of a chairman appointed by the government and two other members, one appointed by an animal welfare organisation and the other by a farming organisation. The rules of procedure are laid down in the Ministry of Justice Executive Order No 971 of 7th December 1992 concerning the rules of procedure for the special council concerning animal welfare matters (The Animal Welfare Council).[1]

The Danish Centre for Animal Welfare is another example of the government working with stakeholders.[2] The Centre was established as a collaboration between the government and Copenhagen and Aarhus universities. One of the objectives of the Centre is to communicate animal welfare knowledge to relevant stakeholders, such as farmers, politicians, veterinarians, researchers and pet owners.

An animal welfare funding pool is also created under the Finance Act. Animal welfare pool funding applications may be made by any organisations working on animal welfare in Denmark. In 2011 six million DKR were allocated to the fund, which is available for use for purposes not already being addressed by public authorities.[3]

 

[1] https://www.retsinformation.dk/Forms/R0710.aspx?id=57846

[2] http://www.foedevarestyrelsen.dk/english/Animal/AnimalWelfare/DCAW/Pages/default.aspx

[3] http://www.justitsministeriet.dk/nyt-og-presse/pressemeddelelser/2011/in...

Are legal provisions effective in acknowledging animal welfare as a mainstream concern?

The legislative framework provided by the Animal Welfare Act 2013 ensures that the government works with some key stakeholders to improve animal welfare in the country. The government responds to opinions and recommendations from its advisory bodies by organising consultations that further make animal welfare a mainstream concern of society by promoting further debate and stakeholder engagement.

The government also funds centres for animal welfare issues that further promote communication and awareness on animal welfare both nationally and internationally.

The government states that it places high priority on communicating and networking with European and non-European countries to share information on the national control of animal welfare and new initiatives regarding animal welfare.[1]

 

[1] http://pure.au.dk//portal/files/44750084/2010_AnimalWelfare.pdf

Are there economic and societal barriers to improving animal welfare in the country?

There are no significant barriers relating to this indicator. The government works with stakeholders on a number of issues with a policy of sharing information via reports and conferences. The government has a number of advisory bodies to help it to work to improve animal welfare and has a record of acting on the advice from these bodies following consultation.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Engagement between government and stakeholders is driven by the need to fulfil legislative and policy commitments, and some stakeholder bodies such as the Animal Welfare Council and the Ethics Council have been formed as a result of legislative requirements.

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Denmark is an open economy with exports representing 65% of GDP. Although a “burst housing bubble and subsequent bank failures have made Denmark the hardest hit Scandinavian economy”, it has recently adopted a growth plan for the period 2014-2020. The government plans to reduce corporation tax from 25% to 23% and taxes generally by 0.5% in 2014. Denmark has one of the largest public sectors in Europe; therefore, government expenditure will remain high. However, the BMI predicts that due to “substantial tax revenues….deficit and debt levels” will remain at a sustainable level. In addition, public debt is low compared to other developed nations, currently at 47% of GDP, giving the government room to devise policies aimed at supporting growth when needed. Overall, the robustness of its main trading partners, Germany and Sweden for example, will contribute positively to export activity. In the long term, the EIU predicts that real GDP growth will average out at 1.4% for the period 2013-20.

Date of information: 11/02/2014
Population 
5,590,478
GDP 
$314,242,037,117
GDP (PPP) 
$42,086
Education expenditure (% of GDP) 
8.7 (2009)