Stricter requirements for dog owners and breeders
If you have a dog, you should go outside with him twice a day for a total of at least one hour. In addition, tethering should be prohibited. Exceptions are planned for dogs that are used as work animals.
Dr. Ronald Lindner
Animal behavior therapist Dr. Ronald Lindner advises all pet owners under the heading « fiffi & co. On the go » every Monday at MDR at 4 am. He is a course leader at the Institute for Dog-Human Relationships in Saxony.
Mr. Lindner, how useful do you think the new rules for dog owners are?
Dr. Ronald Lindner: These are old approaches – repackaged and also by far not sufficient and knowledgeable enough to really avoid animal suffering. My old German teacher would have said: « Well written, but unfortunately missed the topic
– Grade 4! »
What do you recommend to go out with the dog?
Quality vs. Quantity! The walk and what is experienced should primarily meet the needs of the dog.
Give your four-legged friend enough time for typical dog behavior. He will thank you with a balanced personality. If a dog does not get regular exercise, he suffers and becomes increasingly frustrated, reacts fearfully or aggressively and in the worst case forgets all social behavior.
Could controls be carried out with the introduction of such a set of rules?
Perhaps one or the other dog owner is starting to rethink things by actually extending his daily walk and not just walking « around the block ».
But who should check the requirement – walking at least twice a day for a total of one hour? The veterinary offices are already more than overwhelmed with the implementation of § 11 TschG, according to which people who deal with animals commercially must prove their expertise.
What rules do you think would be necessary?
- General ban on keeping kennels and tethering – without exceptions!
- The legal introduction of the dog driver license D.O.Q. 2.0, as dog owners have to prove their knowledge in theory and practice.
- Real and nationwide standardized implementation of §11 TschG in matters Evidence and verification of the expertise of people who work with dogs commercially. The LMU Munich has created a standardized examination procedure for this purpose, which only needs to be adopted by the federal states and offices nationwide.
What do you recommend dog owners to observe even without a legal basis?
The Institute for Dog-Human Relationships in Saxony has drawn up ten golden rules for this.
We recommend two hours a day free running without a leash outside of your own territory. This brings movement, enables exploration and of course elimination.
2. Always be socially involved
Allow a lot of time with people and, if possible, with another dog in the family and avoid social isolation. Then they are motivated to keep in contact with people and dogs they trust and to adapt their own behavior to the behavior of other social partners.
3. Enable contact with conspecifics
It is recommended to have at least two people in a group and to have free and independent contact with conspecifics every day in order to learn and maintain safe social contact.
A changing environment is beneficial. The holder should be with you whenever possible. Dogs should never be separated from the family unit for longer than stress-free.
5. Enable contact with people
Daily free contact with people outside of the family is recommended in order to communicate.
6. Communicate in a variety of ways
Communicating via multiple channels should also take into account non-verbal elements (facial expressions, gestures and body language).
The mental workload should be achieved by promoting the pronounced learning ability.
Depending on the disposition, breed and line-specific characteristics must be taken into account.
It is important to feed and groom the dog appropriately and to house it appropriately. Pain, suffering and damage must be averted!
10. No positive penalties
Absolutely renounce verbal and physical violence or threats!
Julia Klöckner’s proposal also includes an exhibition ban for dogs that have torture breeding traits. What do you make of it?
Of course, not just an exhibition ban is enough, but breeding bans should be introduced as soon as possible. In dog breeding, the problem of torture breeding comes first and this is by no means a new problem, but has been discussed for over 21 years!
Pet animals are always subject to fashion trends. For a certain look, for example, the nose is bred to be particularly flat. This is usually associated with breathing problems. Other breeds lead to eye problems or accept hereditary diseases for a certain coat color.
In 1999 there was an expert opinion commissioned by the Federal Ministry of Agriculture on the interpretation of §11b TschG. That named exactly the traits affected and the dog breeds most severely affected by torture breeding.
According to the experts, these should have been excluded from breeding immediately. Above all, the French and English bulldogs, pug and co, which are still the most popular breeds today, who suffer from a multitude of torture breeding characteristics for life.
I myself was part of our MDR series « fiffi & co. On the road » at the international dog fair in Leipzig 2017 and was more than shocked about « the breeding offer ».