03/18/20 Do not abandon your animals due to Coronavirus!

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Organizations within Network for animals protection warn about the needs and requirements of dogs and cats during pandemics

- Dogs and cats do not transfer coronavirus, but they do need our help within this time of crisis

52 organisations within Network for animals protection which take care of an enormous number of abandoned animals on a daily basis, strongly note that the World health organisation has clearly stated that dogs and cats cannot catch the new Coronavirus COVID-19 and they cannot infect humans with this virus - which has also been warned and concluded by Croatian Ministery of agriculture. Therefore they invite all guardians of pets not to leave their dogs and cats, but to listen to experts and act responsibly towards the animals they are taking care of!

„ Due to this new situation and compliance with instructions given - which include reduction of contacts and movement - many shelters for abandoned animals also need to close their door for visitors and potential foster care. For animals in shelters, this means there will be no fostering, and for those in the streets waiting for their place in the shelter, it means they will not receive it. Those are all reasons that commit us to even greater responsibility towards animals. Therefore organisations within Network for animals protection invite everyone to become part of the solution, and not part of the problem; do not abandon your pets, castrate them and do not buy dogs, cats and other animals but give them home and by this, save more lives“ – as stated by Ivana Lunka, a lawyer from Animal Friends Croatia which coordinates Network for animals protection.

AFC remind us that it is well known for ages, that pets have a great beneficial impact on people's health and they also do lower stress and anxiety, protect our heart and keep humans from allergies. Therefore, now and today, when many people work from home or are under self-isolation, Animals' Friends invite everyone to use this time and spend it relaxing with their pets. They are exactly the ones that may be the cure against stress and panic as we know that cat's purring lowers blood pressure and heartbeats while taking a walk with your dog several times per day ensures enough of fresh air.

„While taking a walk with the dog, one should, of course, respect all instructions recommended due to protection that the situation requires. It includes washing hands after a walk, often changing and washing your laundry, washing their paws after a walk, and similar measurements. It is recommended to go for a walk-in time when it isn't crowded outside, to move around other people and for the walk to be as short as possible, at least during next several weeks“ – as stated by Ivana Lunka, who is, at the same time, inviting us to be responsible.

She is adding that help needs to be provided to persons which suffer from chronic diseases as well as to the elders, as with other things and kinds of help, as well as with walking their dogs. In case of necessity to enter self-isolation, it would be good for guardians, if do not have family members which might walk their dog, by the end of self-isolation to temporarily give care to a dog with their relatives, friends or in hotels and pensions for pets.

She is giving also a note that stores who sell special foods and medicine for house animals should leave the possibility of selling those kinds of necessary products at least through delivery options. It refers to products which are necessary for animals with health issues and problems, and which are not available in regular stores or supermarkets.

AFC and other organizations within Network for animals protection appeal to all that, in a situation which requires from us even bigger responsibility and when we are overly occupied with our own safety, to think about our pets, but also to think about the animals in shelters whose fostering will now be even harder, and of course, to think about those animals that have been abandoned. AFC conclude that, besides care for their own pets, it is of great importance to show - and now precisely - a socially responsible behaviour and to bring a decision to adopt animals instead of buying them.

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