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On Thursday 14 October, CAS International and AnimaNaturalis launched the 'Save the Galgos' campaign. This happened during the first action of the campaign: a protest in the Spanish capital Madrid. Important Spanish press agencies and newspapers such as EuropaPress and La Razón reported on our new campaign.
With 'Save the Galgos' we demand better protection of the Spanish galgo (a kind of greyhound) and other hunting dogs that are frequently used for traditional hare hunting and championships. Every year in February - when the hunting season ends - about 50,000 galgos are dumped and/or killed. In Madrid, at the famous central square Puerta del Sol, we protested against these abuses.
The Spanish galgo mainly happens in the autonomous regions of Andalusia, Castile-La Mancha and Castile and León. According to estimates, five thousand greyhounds are dumped annually in Seville alone. The hunters see them as objects: when the dogs no longer serve their purpose, the hunters literally abandon them to their fate. Marius Kolff, Director of CAS:
"In many villages in the Spanish countryside almost all families are involved in hunting with galgos. A true slaughter takes place, first of all of the animals that are hunted but also of the galgos that are used for this hunt. They are mistreated during training, they have to run for days on end for hours while they are built for an occasional super-fast sprint. And when they are not found good they get punished, for example by tying them behind a car, by beating them or by pressing cigarettes on their skin. Terrible! And when they have completed their 'task' they are discarded. And how! Thrown alive into deep pits or hung from trees, with their legs just above the ground, so they die a horrible death. The maltreatment of these animals is unprecedented. It is estimated that at least 50,000 galgos a year are involved, but probably tens of thousands more.”
With our campaign we want to get to the root of the problem by improving Spanish legislation. Currently there is no law that protects galgos and other hunting dogs from hunting and championships, only regulations of the autonomous regions. We want the existing laws that protect pets to also apply to hunting dogs.
We are collecting signatures with a petition which we will use as support in our lobbying activities. A new national animal protection law will soon be debated. We want it to also protect hunting dogs. Sign our petition here: savethegalgos.org