Uruguay

D
Uruguay
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.

F

Formal recognition of animal sentience

Policy is being discussed or developed

Existing policy and legislation does not acknowledge animal sentience. However recent working groups on animal welfare, in particular in relation to productive species (farmed animals) are developing guidelines and discussion based on the capacity to feel pain.[1]

 

[1] For example http://www.bienestaranimal.org.uy/files/PBA%20UACh%20Uruguay%202011.pdf and http://www.inac.gub.uy/innovaportal/file/6021/1/bienestar_animal_2010_publicacion_con_modificacion.pdf

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

As it stands today, there is no formal evidence or signal from the government to recognise sentience as an independent issue that will inform discussions of animal issues in the country. As such, sentience is not included and does not inform public policies that could be potentially linked to animals (such as environmental or sustainable production policies).

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

There is no government position towards sentience, so no resource for its promotion has been allocated. Some changes in this position have recently been proposed, which is positive, but no evidence of policy or legislation changes were found as a consequence of these changes.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

There is no policy or legislation relevant to this indicator.

E

Support for the Universal Declaration on Animal Welfare

Policy is being discussed or developed

Support for the UDAW is currently under discussion in Uruguay and positive advance has been made towards this.

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.

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

Following standards on support for the UDAW by neighbouring countries in the region, the government is currently considering pledging in principle support for the UDAW. This should facilitate the recognition of animal welfare as an independent issue and ease the process of linking animal welfare initiatives to global and national discussions. 

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

It is hopeful that the UDAW could be given support in principle by the government in the near future. However there is no evidence of actual government allocation of responsibility or budget for work in acknowledging or promoting the UDAW. The government is encouraged to take further steps to a concrete policy position. 

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

There are no enforcement mechanisms relevant to this indicator.

C

Laws against causing animal suffering

There is legislation with partial application

Law 18471/2009, the Law for the Responsible Possession of Animals,  defines its objective as to “protect animals’ life and welfare” (Article 1) and has a general prohibition against causing death, inflicting pain or inducing “excessive stress” to animals, unless it is for reasons specified in the law such as veterinary treatment (Article 12). Article 12(A) prohibits mistreating or injuring animals, meaning abusive action causing excessive harm or stress or impairment to bodily integrity. Article 1 also contains a list of specific forms of conduct that are banned under the legislation, such as bullfighting, promotion of animal fighting, feeding animals with live animals, genetic manipulation and other similar concepts.

The law does not encompass suffering caused by failure to act, but does create a duty of care under Article 9(A) which requires that any holder of an animal is responsible for keeping it in conditions appropriate to its kind and according to OIE standards and World Animal Protection (formerly the World Society for the Protection of Animals) guidelines.

Handling, treatment and surgery that are performed as a result of current practice in the management of livestock are exempt from the prohibition in 12(A).

The law does not define “animal” so it appears that the provisions may cover all animals including fish and invertebrates.

Further explanatory detail on the provisions of Law 18471/2009 is contained within recent Decree 62/2014.

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

Effort has been made by the government to give independence to the issue of animal protection in Uruguay by producing specific legislation on animal protection. The current law 18471/2009 is an update of legislation passed in 1918.

The legislation just regulates activities and conducts that involve the use of animals, with no implied mandates to improve welfare. The regulated conducts do not extend to suffering caused by failure to act.

The exemptions for any conduct that fits with current livestock management practices mean that the law is not able to adapt to prohibit practices that are found to cause stress to animals.

The current framework of animal protection needs further regulation in order to make implementation possible and to close current gaps in interpretation. In addition, there are some old regulations which need revision in order to improve animal welfare awareness and concerns. For instance, the Rural Code of 1941 (Law 10024/1941) gives travellers in rural areas the right to kill dogs that “get in [their] way with the intention of attacking” them.

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

A new body has been created by legislation, the National Honorary Commission of Animal Welfare (see details in the evaluation of indicator 2), and also a National Fund for Animal Protection, for which there is a special tax and provisions for income sources. This is a very positive step towards minimising budget constraints.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Law 18471/2009 contains the following enforcement mechanisms applicable to all infringements of its provisions (Article 22): formal warnings, fines, seizing of animals, cancelation of permits or authorisations, and bans on having animals (temporary, indefinite or permanent). The section on enforcement mechanisms also contains some comments with regard to those acts that will create an aggravated offence (such as tethering animals or supplying medications without a prescription) and gives the Honorary Commission the power to introduce sanctions for these.

C

Protecting animals used in farming

There is legislation with partial application

The general anti-cruelty provisions of Article 12(A) of Law 18471/2009 apply to this category of animals.

National Decree 369 of 1983 regulates veterinary inspection of animal products and has detailed regulation on slaughtering of animals raised for production and some additional regulations on animals used for transport. In addition, the country has established in Resolution DGSG 35/011 (2011), a system of registry and identification of bovines to control transport of these animals, and Resolution DGSG 152/012 (2012) which incorporates slaughtering rules from the European Council Regulation 1099/2009 (which came into force in the European Union in 2013). 

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

The regulations only deal with issues regarding sanitised and efficient production of animal products, particularly meat, mostly by regulating slaughtering and transport. There is detailed regulation of pre-slaughter stunning, which does have an impact on animal welfare, but this particular regulation does not promote animal welfare in a way that could indicate that there is an intention of government to promote this concept. The legislation helps to improve animal health and sanitary conditions for slaughtering, transport and disease control. Together with Chile, Uruguay has established an OIE Collaborating Centre for Animal Welfare Research, the only centre of its kind in South America, which is actively promoting animal welfare within the region.[1] 

 

[1] http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/health_consumer/information_sources/docs/ahw/rep...

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

Meat exports are an essential component of the Uruguayan economy. The country’s dependence on farmed animals presents a potential barrier to promoting legislation that effectively relates to animal welfare as an independent mainstream issue, in other words, promotion of animal welfare as an issue detached from animal production. However, precisely because of the same dependence, there is strong promotion of health issues, disease prevention policies and other measures for developing regulations on farm animals, which should have an impact on animal welfare standards.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

The enforcement mechanisms established for Law 18471/2009 apply to this indicator (including fines, cancelation of permits and bans on ownership).

In addition, there are specific enforcement measures on animal transport, which include country guidance, government resolutions in which aspects of transport and slaughter are explained and a registry system to control animal movement. Furthermore, there are some financial and administrative sanctions derived from DSG 152/012, which refer to the general public finance legislation in the country. The government has also produced several guidance publications in collaborative work with the OIE on animal welfare for farm animals, therefore showing an important interaction between objectives traced in both policy and legislation.

C

Protecting animals in captivity

There is legislation

The general anti-cruelty provisions of Article 12(A) of Law 18471/2009 apply to this category of animals.

Article 6 of Law 18471/2009 makes reference to animals kept in captivity and establishes that these animals should be kept in observation of basic sanitary needs, space, environment, hygiene and nutrition, according to the species. Only specified species are permitted to be kept in captivity. There are no specific regulations detailing the minimum standards required by Article 6.  

Law 16088/1989 changed some precepts of the Civil Code in relation to damage caused by a wild animal and, as a general provision, bans the possession of wild animals unless specifically authorised. Authorisation may be obtained by zoos, circuses, wild animal breeders and researchers.

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

On the one hand, the legislation that covers animals in captivity does not include any specific regulations to promote animal welfare, but calls for a basic observation of unspecified animal needs for which no detailed guidance is provided. Complementary measures in Law 16088 highlight issues on the possible damages to someone else’s property or injuries to other humans by irresponsible ownership or care of wild animals, but as this legislation does not include any measures on the welfare of these same animals, it cannot be said that Uruguayan legislation recognises animal welfare of captive wild animals as independent issue on which an attitude of promotion could be deduced.

International regulations on animals in captivity that promote positive attitudes towards animal welfare of animals in captivity have a general tendency to reduce captivity. For instance, neighbouring South American countries have recently passed regulations or legislation to prevent the use of animals in circuses. In Uruguay this activity has been legitimised by law. There is also some historical backward movement from legislation preventing the use of animals in entertainment, passed in 1918, and a more lenient perspective towards wild animal breeders and circuses, in 1989 and 2009.

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

It is unclear, from the text of the legislation in existence, whether the government has legal mechanisms to produce secondary regulation to clarify the principles and the gaps in the relevant laws. If this is not the case, the willingness of the government to produce regulations based on the existing legal framework should be the starting point to improve the existing legislation in the country. The apparent lack of such willingness currently presents itself as the most relevant national constraint to produce effective legislation and improve animal welfare in this area. 

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

The enforcement mechanisms established for Law 18471/2009 apply to this indicator (including fines, cancelation of permits and bans on ownership).

B

Protecting companion animals

There is legislation

The general anti-cruelty provisions of Article 12(A) of Law 18471/2009 apply to this category of animals.

Article 8 of Law 18471/2009 defines companion animals. As part of the definition, it says that these animals receive attention, protection, food and sanitary care from their owners or keepers. Article presents some basic characteristics of responsible ownership, so to prevent issues such as public nuisance and danger to others. Article 10 contains some regulations on dangerous companion animals (which appears to refer to dogs).  There is a general prohibition on culling, with some exceptions for cases in which there is a sanitary emergency or an endemic situation needs to be avoided (although there are no guidelines to define or understand these scenarios). 

The responsible ownership guidelines make reference to OIE regulations and World Society for the Protection of Animals (now World Animal Protection) “guidelines”, but there is no specific indication of the provisions referred to. 

Article 18 establishes a National Registry of Companion Animals.

Decree 62/2014 provides further detailed rules in Article 29 that expand on the requirements of Article 8 of Law 18471/2009 and in Article 30 that detail responsible ownership requirements. Article 33 makes provisions regarding the operation of shelters, including for their inspection by the government, and there are rules regarding breeding including requiring puppies to remain with their mother for at least 60 days (Article 59) and requiring sellers of dogs and cats to be registered (Article 62).

Articles 82 to 87 of Decree 62/2014 make rules regarding stray animals including provision for neutering caught strays. It appears from Articles 88 to 96 that healthy stray animals may not be killed unless they are aggressive and cannot be re-socialised.

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

Along with farm animals, companion animals are a main subject of animal protection legislation in Uruguay. Through the National Honorary Commission of Animal Welfare, the country has introduced a system of whistleblowing for abuse to animals.[1]

 

[1] http://www.mec.gub.uy/innovaportal/v/55769/2/mecweb/denuncias?3colid=556...

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

Law 18471/2009 contains provisions for budgeting animal welfare protection. In relation to companion animals in particular, this law also establishes in Article 21 that the Zoonotic Disease Commission should employ some of the funds received for work on dogs to provide money to the National Honorary Commission of Animal Welfare, so that campaigns on stray population control can be undertaken. 

Dr. Andres Arroyo, a member of the National Honorary Commission of Animal Welfare, points out on the website of the Small Animals Veterinary Association of Uruguay[1] that the key constraint for the effective implementation of animal welfare provisions in the country is the lack of resources, as no proper budget was assigned to the Commission for its work and the law itself contains no provision for funding to be implemented effectively. The lack of funds has a direct implication on human resource capacity to address the needs of animal welfare promotion.

 

[1] http://www.suvepa.org.uy/index.php/novedades/84-novedades/88-conahoba

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

The enforcement mechanisms established for Law 18471/2009 apply to this indicator (including fines, cancelation of permits and bans on ownership).

C

Protecting animals used for draught and recreation

There is legislation

The general anti-cruelty provisions of Article 12(A) of Law 18471/2009 apply to this category of animals. More detailed provisions relating specifically to this category of animals are found in Decree 62/2014.

Article 23 of Decree 62/2014 requires that those conducting shows to the public involving animals must employ someone to oversee the welfare of the animals and register with the Animal Welfare Technical Group at least 72 hours in advance. Article 71 requires that sporting events held for profit must be registered and animals used for sporting events must be certified as healthy by a veterinarian no more than 72 hours in advance. Legislation does not prohibit the use of wild animals in circuses.

Article 99 of Decree 62/2014 requires that those who own horses, whether for draught or for sport, should ensure the Five Freedoms in line with OIE guidelines. Article 100 makes welfare related rules including provision of adequate housing and shelter and allowing daily exercise.

Articles 116 to 123 provide for the welfare of draught horses, including age limits and ambient temperature limits for work. Urban working horses are required to be registered.

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

Recent legislative developments in Decree 62/2014 should improve the regulation of the welfare of working horses and provide some welfare considerations and restrictions on the use of animals in shows. However wild animals are still permitted to be used in travelling circus performances, presenting potentially significant welfare challenges.

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

The government acknowledges that there are concerning issues around the use of working horses in impoverished communities, and has attempted to address this through the introduction of specific restrictions on the use of working horses in Decree 62/2014. This provides hope that improvement may be possible. Socio-cultural attitudes may present barriers with respect to taking action to prevent the use of wild animals in circuses, although discussions are taking place on this issue.[1]

 

[1] http://www.ad-international.org/animals_in_entertainment/go.php?id=3649&...

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

The enforcement mechanisms established for Law 18471/2009 apply to this indicator (including fines, cancelation of permits and bans on ownership).

D

Protecting animals used in scientific research

There is legislation with partial application

Article 7 of Law 18471/2009 defines animals used in scientific research by reference to activities and institutions which use animals (such as universities and laboratories) and provides that these issues will be covered by separate legislation. A few months later, Law 18611/2009 was made to regulate the use of animals in research and education. The provisions of Law 18611/2009 are wide-reaching and detailed, but focus mostly on the activities and institutions authorised to perform animal experimentation, rather than on the welfare conditions or circumstances in which animals are used. There are no limitations as to which animals can be used. The legislation applies to chordate vertebrates and although there is a restrictive list of institutions authorised to undertake experimentation or to use animals in education, there are no substantive limits to the amount of experiments or animals that can be used by each institution.

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

There are no connections with other policies and no development of welfare measures falling in line with internationally recognised objectives such as the Three Rs principle. As such, the legislation is not currently effective to make the welfare of animals used for scientific research a mainstream concern of society.

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

Human resources do seem to have been allocated to the implementation of legislation addressing the use of animals in research and education. The legislation creates a National Commission for Animal Experimentation, which is formed by government representatives from various ministries. The Commission is presided over by the Ministry of Culture and Education and includes representatives from civil society, including the pharmaceutical industry and animal protection societies. Furthermore, there is a mandate to create an Ethical Commission of Animal Experimentation within the institutions that are legally authorised to use animals in research or education. However despite this, the legislation provides that members of these commissions will work ad honorem and there is only a vague reference to financial resource (budget), which is said to come from the Ministry of Education.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Law 18611/2009 creates a National Commission of Animal Experimentation in Chapter III (Articles 4 to 8) which has the duty to implement the legislation, advise the government on issues related to animal experimentation, and impose sanctions. In the context of this law, enforcement mechanisms are mostly administrative remedies, which include licence cancellations or suspensions, fines and warnings, but the legislation leaves open the possibility for the further development of civil sanctions. As the legislation basically regulates the activities and lists those institutions authorised to perform experiments or use animals in teaching modules, the mechanisms are relevant and specific to this regulation.  

E

Protecting the welfare of wild animals

There is legislation with partial application

The general anti-cruelty provisions of Article 12(A) of Law 18471/2009 apply to this category of animals.

Law 16088/1989 contains regulations specifically addressing the issue of wild animals; its main objective was to ban possession of wild animals outside zoos and other types of park. This law establishes that private owners of wild animals should surrender them to relevant authorities and introduces some changes to the Civil Code with regard to responsibility of damage done by wild animals.

Furthermore, there are specific regulations to hunting activities, as established by Law 9481/35, and some regulation decrees produced in the framework of this law. By the production of these regulations, the government has established a list of animals that are not included in the hunting bans (including boars, pigeons and indigenous rodents) while establishing a general procedure for obtaining permits to undertake hunting in the country. It is not clear whether such permits contain any welfare-related restrictions or conditions

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

Although there are several regulations that cover this category of animals, these concentrate on the avoidance of animal destruction and the regulation of hunting activities. There are no indications of individual wildlife protection with a focus on animal welfare, but rather an attempt to achieve administrative control of human consumption of live resources and some policies on natural conservation, including forestry and national flora. In addition, and contrary to neighbouring economies and international trends, there is explicit legal authorisation for the use of wild animals in circuses and breeding of wild animals in captivity.  There are no apparent measures which explicitly protect animals in these situations, beyond the general application of the animal protection Law 18471/2009. The existing legislation is therefore not effective to make the welfare of this category of animals a mainstream concern of society.

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

Wild animal regulation would benefit from an update to legislation and some effort into unifying different activities that have a direct negative impact on the welfare of wild animals. Lack of uniform parameters of protection is identified as a national constraint for the correct implementation of legislative and policy measures to protect animals in the wild. Furthermore, cultural traditions associated with the use of animals in entertainment, particularly in circuses, may present barriers to improvement in this area. 

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

The enforcement mechanisms established for Law 18471/2009 apply to this indicator (including fines, cancelation of permits and bans on ownership).

Administrative sanctions for hunting activities fall short in protecting the animals which are the object of such activities and therefore do little to promote their welfare. Some attempts to provide enforcement mechanisms to national authorities (police and navy) can be found in the general legislation of national budget accounting (Law 16320/1992), but its application is not easily linked to legislation mentioned above. There are no guidelines, recommendations or publications for the government which could easily educate the public on the course of action to be followed to guarantee wildlife protection. 

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.

B

Government accountability for animal welfare

There is legislation

The country has legislation that provides the government with a mandate to establish different commissions and advisory groups. These comprise experts and civil society representatives, which include animal protection organisations, who are tasked with providing advice to government, developing further legislation and establishing implementation measures. All of these commissions contain government representatives from the Executive Government, in particular, from specified Ministries.

In addition, there is a specific Animal Welfare Technical Group within the Ministry of Livestock, Agriculture and Fisheries, which operates relevant tasks associated with animal welfare and, according to its mandate, is key to promote animal welfare measure in the country, in particular in relation to issues directly managed by the Ministry.[1]

 

[1] http://www.mec.gub.uy/innovaportal/v/55767/2/mecweb/acerca_de?3colid=556...

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

Uruguayan legislation on issues regarding animals and animal protection has adequate structures according to which responsibility for promotion of animal welfare has a designated body or officials in charge of its management. As the country has a longstanding tradition of meat production, most of the efforts rely on following international standards, particularly with respect to transport and slaughter, and there are direct efforts to include this issue in the government structure and to include and promote animal welfare.  

Allocation of direct responsibility within government ministries includes work specifically aimed at having direct representation at animal welfare events, interaction with the OIE’s Collaboration Centre on Animal Welfare and promoting activities to encourage the inclusion of animal welfare in discussions and decision-making processes. As such, animal welfare issues are often included in the discussion of government policies.

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

Partly because of the active role of government officials in public animal welfare discussions, human and financial resources provide constraints with respect to accomplishment of objectives established by legislation. The legislation specifies that although there are supporting bodies for legal implementation (in the form of Commissions), members work on a pro bono basis, which creates a resource constraint for the improvement of animal welfare.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Operation of the relevant groups is mandated by 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

Uruguay has a longstanding tradition of working with the OIE and hosts, alongside Chile, the Collaborating Centre for Animal Welfare. This is the only centre of its kind in South America. Through the interaction between this centre and government officials, there is an important development of animal welfare studies and activities. A regional seminar, which held its second session in 2012, involved the participation of this centre and several government officials from different ministries, and was declared an event of National Interest by the Ministry of Sports and Tourism through Resolution 201201040 (published in Montevideo on 19 April 2012).

Furthermore, there is evidence of collaborative regional and national work into improving animal health. In 2007, Uruguay hosted an OIE PVS mission to assess veterinary services and has allowed the findings to be published on the OIE’s website. 

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

There is active interaction with the OIE and this has resulted in a series of events, informed policy and legislation and improved animal welfare in the country and the region. This is evidence of the country’s stand towards considering animal welfare an independent issue which can be developed through different initiatives, including by improving standards in animal health.

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

There is resource, both human and financial, to engage actively in activities with the OIE and to lead regional events to push neighbouring governments into considering animal welfare in their policy and legislative production. There are no perceived obstacles to develop this relationship further.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

There are no enforcement mechanisms relevant to this indicator.

C

OIE animal welfare standards

There is legislation with partial application

The government has developed legislation covering most of the OIE’s animal welfare standards, but further specificity is needed to reach the overall level reached by the OIE. Examples of this can be found in legislation on stray dog population control, animals used in research, key aspects of the standards on transport of farmed animals and the chapters on fish farming. 

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

The government has demonstrated a good track record in producing policy and legislation covering some of the OIE’s standards and in basing policy production on guidance provided by the OIE. This has facilitated the government’s own discussions on animal welfare and on animal health, with clear links showing how the development of one is crucial to achieve high standards in the other. The government is encouraged to continue in this positive line.

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

The main obstacle for the promotion of animal welfare policy and legislation is the lack of financial resources. This remains the main obstacle for the full incorporation of the OIE’s standards and guiding principles into policy and legislation in the country.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

The majority of the OIE’s animal welfare standards are covered in enforceable legislation.

C

Reporting on progress

There is legislation with partial application

Owing to Uruguay’s extensive network and interaction with different stakeholders, and the existence of a wide range of working groups and commissions, legal mandates to keep records can be found in the list of objectives traced for these working groups. The Honorary Commission for Animal Welfare has a mandate to keep records and to register the total number of companion animals and the National Commission of Animal Experimentation has a mandate to keep records of the experiments and animals used in experiments in the country, from information produced by Ethical Commissions. There is some publicly available information, for example, copies of presentations given by the government[1] and also information on external stakeholders’ websites on issues such as the number of complaints raised before the National Commission on Animal Welfare.[2]

There are no specific mandates for allowing public access to information, but the law does not establish any explicit obstacles to this and in the case of slaughter records kept by the National Meat Institute, resources are readily downloadable and a close track of figures is kept on periodic bulletins to which any member of the public can subscribe.

There are no reporting structures found in relation to animals in captivity, animals used for draught and wild animals.

There is no legislation or policy requiring the production of public reports on progress towards animal welfare goals.

 

[1] http://www.mec.gub.uy/innovaportal/v/54717/2/mecweb/compromiso_social?pa...

[2] http://www.presidencia.gub.uy/comunicacion/comunicacionnoticias/conahoba...

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

Partial and somewhat unofficial figures are published on third party websites, so further development and resource is recommended for this information to be effectively compiled and published in accessible official databases. In addition, the country would benefit from extending recording activities to other animal categories. The government is encouraged to develop a clear strategy on animal welfare improvement and to commence regular reporting on progress towards identified goals.

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

The government’s transparency and interest in keeping records is noteworthy. The legislative requirements for record keeping and registry activities is thorough, and while it does not necessarily capture specific welfare incidents for all records, the existence of a registry allows for quantification and assessment of the country’s ability to manage animal welfare issues. There should not be significant barriers to improvement here.

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Legislation requires some records to be kept on specific issues such as slaughter and the use of animals in experiments. 

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

Policy is being discussed or developed

Law 18.437/2008 contains some general mandates to introduce civic values in education and to have some regard to environmental issues, but there is no mandate to introduce animal welfare in the national curriculum and there is no mention of animal welfare issues in this law. 

However examples of animal welfare education modules exist as a development of animal welfare events and activities, which have government support.[1]

General activity in support of animal welfare education can therefore be deduced from government actions and behaviour, but this lacks formalisation in official policy documents and legislation.

It is important to highlight that Decree 62 of 2014 changed some provisions with regard to the National Honorary Commission of Animal Welfare, by linking its structure to the general secretary of the Ministry of Agriculture.

 

[1] http://www.bienestaranimal.org.uy/novedades1.html

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

Efforts to include animal welfare in education modules at university level have support from the government, but are not governmental initiatives.[1] Students’ access to animal welfare education comes from professional development in veterinary sciences. There is no official programme from the government by which this access is guaranteed at an earlier stage of compulsory education, which undermines the societal value of this subject matter in the country.

 

[1] For example http://www.fvet.edu.uy/drupal-6.16/?q=secvet_programa-de-educaci%C3%B3n-continua-evaluaci%C3%B3n-de-semen-sexado-bovino-congelado-descongelado-vs-se

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

There is no formal policy or legislation in the country for the inclusion of education programmes in the national curriculum. The government has expressed a desire to raise awareness, which suggests that improvement may be possible in this area.

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.

B

Consultation with stakeholders

There is legislation

Legislation on issues covering animal welfare and animal protection includes interaction with relevant organisations and stakeholders as a mandate for the government. The allocation of responsibility of government officials in relation to animal protection and animal welfare includes the creation of advisory commissions. The existing legislation has made considerable efforts to include civil society representatives, veterinary surgeons and representatives of animal protection organisations, thus ensuring that there is interaction to implement legislation and to formulate the ways in which further interaction with civil society can fill in possible gaps left by legislation. 

The government also promotes a healthy attitude towards animal welfare by expressing publicly that animal welfare issues are a matter of national interest, supporting OIE programmes in the region and hosting initiatives to change attitudes towards animals or at least to manage animals in a way that is humane and sustainable and takes into consideration international welfare standards.

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

Most of Uruguay’s animal welfare legislation includes measures to promote positive attitudes towards recognition of the benefits of involving different parts of society in the discussions that have repercussions on the welfare of animals. As such, legislation anticipates that dialogue between these participants should inform the production of further legislation and provide advice to the government in situations in which legislation and policy currently fall short. In addition, the government allows relevant stakeholders to act upon potential infractions of animal protection measures, decentralising punitive powers with the aim of reaching wider implementation.

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

There do not appear to be any major obstacles to the interaction of the government with wider society. The immediate constraint on the participation of wider society comes from the fact that most of these commissions have no specified budget, which means that work done by these groups is voluntary and there is therefore a potential resource constraint on improvement. 

Are enforcement mechanisms in place in policy and legislation?

Participation of civil society and relevant stakeholders is mandated by legislation.

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It is expected growth will slow down in 2014, however, domestic demand is strong, employment is steady and there is high satisfaction with standards of living among households. A range of industries will receive investment from both foreign and domestic sources. Industries such as agriculture and forestry will remain buoyant, due to steady world demand. Although real GDP growth is expected to come under 4% in 2014, the EIU expects GDP to rise to its “potential growth rate of 4.5% by 2018".

 

Date of information: 11/02/2014
Population 
3,395,253 (2012)
GDP 
$49,059,705,180 (2012)
GDP (PPP) 
$16,037 (2012)
Education expenditure (% of GDP) 
N.A.