Animal lovers have created a petition urging the government to give local councils more time to apply for financial support for animal sterilisation campaigns.
The petition’s creators stress that local councils have not yet started sterilising animals even though Portugal’s State of Emergency came to an end on May 2, claiming they are in need of “government support”.
In fact, the government’s €500,000 support scheme for animal sterilisation campaigns, which is included in the 2020 State Budget, has yet to be published in its official state gazette Diário da República.
The issue is that councils only have until the end of November to apply for support. Thus, the petitioners are urging the government to extend the deadline until at least March 2021.
“Without help to pay for the sterilisation of pets owned by needy residents, more animals will be abandoned. The cat colony situation is already catastrophic and more and more stray dogs are appearing on the streets,” says Jenny Clarke from Algarve animal association APAA.
She adds: “APAA and other associations do as much as possible, but we all have limited funds and the government should be doing much more to alleviate the problem.”
The petition can be found online at: https://peticaopublica.com/pview.aspx?pi=PT101052