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Animals as a Christmas present: not a good idea – Insurance for Pets


Animal welfare

Why animals shouldn’t be Christmas presents

Many children want a pet for Christmas. Many cats or dogs end up in the animal shelter later. That should change.

Why cats are Germans’ favorite pets

Cats are the Germans’ favorite pets; a cat lives in almost every fourth household. And if you don’t have one at home, you can cuddle with them in a cat café, for example in Berlin.

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Berlin.
« Please please. I like an animal so much. ”Many parents have probably heard this wish from their children, expressed with wide eyes. Especially often before Christmas or birthdays. And many give in to the longings of the little ones. You buy in the next
Pet shop
a hamster, a guinea pig or a cat, a dog or a rabbit.

Many of the four-legged friends actually find a good and sheltered new home. But not many either. Because some long-awaited four-legged friends are suddenly no longer really interesting after a few months, cause too much work or dirt – and ultimately end up in you
animal shelter
, where around 350,000 animals are given away every year and make their living.



Pets need better protection

The Federal Minister of Agriculture has now put improving the protection of pets and saving them the fate of overwhelmed owners on the agenda.
Julia Kloeckner
(CDU) wants to oblige the pet trade to regularly train and educate its staff by means of a regulation. The aim is to ensure that potential buyers are well advised and educated – before they pay for their chosen animal at the checkout.
Read here:
That’s why cats are the pop stars among pets

« Before buying an animal, many owners are not really aware of what to expect, » says Klöckner, explaining her approach. Often times, costs and time are underestimated. So sellers in pet shops have a special one
responsibility
to. “You have to provide competent and professional advice. It is different whether you buy a living being or a book.  »

Every animal needs special housing, care and feeding

Klöckner wants to ensure that all employees in the pet shop are trained in the needs of an animal that is being sold. His knowledge in the fields
Attitude, care
, Feeding, frequent illnesses and normal behavior of the animals must everyone be able to prove to the responsible control authorities.

So far, only the owners and managers of shops with commercial trade in vertebrate animals have had to prove this claim. In addition, pet dealers who sell animals are only to receive a limited license for commercial trade in vertebrates for eight years.

Many animals are simply abandoned – like snakes or cats

Animal welfare must always be in the foreground, says Klöckner: « Advice can sometimes mean advising against. » Because many animals often end up not only in animal shelters because they are overwhelmed, but are – which is even worse – simply abandoned. These are often exotic such as
Snakes, lizards, turtles
or dangerous species such as monitor lizards, giant snakes or spectacled caimans. When dealing with such animals, animal shelters also have their limits, as these animals often require very special equipment.
Also interesting:
Curiously beastly: the best animal stories from 2020

The German
Animal Welfare Association
welcomes Klöckner’s initiative, but would like to see more binding laws for keeping animals in pet shops. Henriette Mackensen, head of the pet animals department, criticizes that it is currently at the discretion of each business whether the animals should be checked on Sundays and public holidays.

Pet dealers criticize the expiration of their license

From an animal welfare point of view, however, it is clear that daily checks of the facilities and feeding are essential. In order for animals not to be given back, it is essential, especially for animal owners, “that they get to know the
Needs of animals
discuss and critically question whether they can meet these needs and offer the animals a species-appropriate life ”.


The Central Association of Zoological Companies (ZZF) considers the training of all employees to be correct. However, the association fears that the approximately 2500 traders nationwide who sell animals will only receive a temporary license for eight years in the future. « Business cannot be conducted on this basis, » criticizes the association spokeswoman Antje Schreiber. “With the time limit, many would withdraw from the animal trade. That would be bad for that
Animal welfare,
because more animals would be sold through uncontrolled channels.  »
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Almost every second household in Germany has a pet

The love of animals in Germany is great overall. Almost every second household (45 percent) has a pet. The German citizens keep a total of 34 million pets.

Cats

are by far number one on the popularity scale: 14.7 million velvet paws live in 23 percent of all animal households. Every fifth household has one of the 10.1 million dogs.
Read here:
A woman from Oman has 480 cats and twelve dogs in her home

There are also around 5.2 million small animals and four million ornamental birds. Not to forget the numerous fish in around 1.6 million aquariums and 1.2 million garden ponds. Last year, the number of terrariums also rose to 200,000.

Klöckner recommends: « Animals don’t belong under the Christmas tree »

Animals are particularly popular in families: around 61 percent of all
Households with children
keep a pet. Most animals live in multi-person households, 30 percent in individuals. The fact is, however, that more and more is being spent on animals: in 2019, sales in the pet industry for feed and commodities rose by 2.4 percent to a total of 5.2 billion euros.

Federal Minister Klöckner hopes that her draft regulation – with possible changes – will be passed by the Federal Council in summer 2021 and come into force. At the moment she can only strongly recommend: « Animals don’t belong under the Christmas tree. »