New Risk of the Law Changing: the Strays of Bosnia Will Suffer!

Screen Shot 2015-04-05 at 18.58.49Dalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist writes:

The Bosnian War was an international armed conflict that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1992 and 1995. Casualties were not only people. Animals also were casualties and suffered during the war. Bosnia and Herzegovina did not have an Animal Protection and Welfare Act until 2009. The Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Herzegovina was only legislated and entered into force by Parliamentary Assembly in 2009. Cruelty towards and killing animals is a criminal offence in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

This Law regulates the responsibility of humans regarding the protection and welfare of animals in terms of breeding/owning; providing shelter and food; protection from cruelty; the well-being of animals during authorised slaughter, ensuring animals are not exposed to stress during transportation, wildlife protection, treatment of abandoned animals, pets and laboratory animals, establishing ethics committees and expert councils/boards, as well as conducting the supervision of the implementation of this Law and penalty measures for all violators of this Law.

The government of Canton Sarajevo has sent an official request to Parliamentary Assembly of Bosnia and Herzegovina to enact amendments to the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals. The prime minister and ministers in the government of Canton Sarajevo demand that article 14 (euthanasia) of the Act is changed. This article allows euthanasia of stray animals only because of veterinary reasons. It is prohibited to kill stray dogs in shelters. Amendments to this article would allow authorities to kill healthy stray animals in shelters if the animals are not adopted.

CULLtureThe proposal of this amendment is not in legislation procedure yet, but we are expecting that one of the leading national parties, the Party of Democratic Action (SDA) will accept this request and start legal procedure to enact these “KILL” amendments. Dino Konakovic, the prime minister of Canton Sarajevo, is a member of the SDA.

As you all know, we had a similar situation in 2013, when rescuers and animal welfare advocates managed to stop the legal procedure to enact a “KILL LAW.” We need your support again.

The Bosnian Act on the Protection and Welfare of Animals is one of the best in Europe but no one is interested in this: corrupt authorities are often involved in the illegal killing of stray and wild animals as a way of money laundering.

Stray animals are victims of notorious cruelty. Politically eligible persons construct so-called shelters for stray animals. These shelters are no better than concentration camps, and the authorities invoice for spay/neuter programs that they do not undertake, as well as invoicing for for food is never given to the animals. They invoice for veterinary examinations and treatment, and at the end, for means for euthanasia. In reality, the stray animals are tortured, and killed in worst possible ways. All this represents a series of violations of criminal law as well as the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

While these atrocities are occurring, local authorities are also financing people who own these shelters. It is money laundering. Also many stray animals are abused and killed on the streets.  Authorities do not nothing to find and punish animal abusers.

10892019_955233547821769_7086032730255842381_nThese proposed amendments, allowing the euthanasia of healthy stray animals, has as their purpose a means to conceal the massacre of stray animals that is already occurring.

Should these amendments be in Parliamentary legislation procedure it will be critical to apply pressure to stop the amendments. International focus and support would be the only solution. International animal welfare organisations, embassies, media, as well as individuals will have to press BiH authorities, insisting they do not change the law, but rather to implement it. The authorities must seek out legal and humane ways to solve the problem of over population of stray dogs in BiH.

The problem of overpopulation of stray dogs is a direct consequence of the failure to implement, as well as a series of obstructions and misuse of the Act on the Protection and Welfare of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which has been lasting since 2009 when the law came into force. The Act on Protection Act and Welfare of Animals of Bosnia and Herzegovina is a lex specialis (the main legislation) in the field of treating animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Act, as well as related by-laws, are the main legal framework for all other laws and by-laws that are legislated by the legislative authorities at any level of organization of authority in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which regulate the relation, keeping and treatment of animals.

By attempting only a partial and non-systematic implementation of the Act, the agony of stray dogs on the streets as well as citizens will only widen further, and budget funds will be spent on non-purpose, illegal and unsystematic attempts to solve the problem. Instead of solving the problem with legal solutions, authorities have been financing the killing of stray animals in illegal pounds for years. Financing of illegal pounds is a violation of the provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, as well as a serious offence in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

P1020736Failure to implement the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals is the result of a series of abuses and obstructions as well as of the authorities dealing only with consequences and not with the causes of the problem, and the causes are the abandonment of animals, irresponsible ownership and uncontrolled reproduction.

Increased numbers of dogs on the streets is always and only a direct result of irresponsible ownership, and failure to implement preventive measures that are provided by the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, such as punishing those who abandon animals, the full identification of ownership and pets, spay/neuter projects with vaccination and tagging of stray animals in an appropriate form and number, and education and information campaigns which are aimed to raise public awareness about the causes of the problem.

The Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals very clearly and precisely provides solutions for dealing with an overpopulation of stray animals in Bosnia. The first legal obligation of authorities is to build shelters for stray animals, whose purpose is to care for stray animals until they are adopted. Conditions that all shelters must fulfil are provided by the Ordinance on the establishment and the conditions that must be fulfilled by shelters for stray animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Another legal obligation of the authorities is the registration of ownership of animals.

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-39-28Finally, after seven years the State Veterinary Office enacted the laws on registration, micro-chipping and identification of ownership of animals Bosnia and Herzegovina, but it has not yet established a unified register of ownership of animals.

If the registry of tagged animals and owners of animals is established, it will enable the identification, prosecution and punishment of people who abandon animals. The implementation of repressive measures will directly affect the consciousness of citizens and thus help solve the situation. Because of the absence of a register of breeders, illegal breeding causes an increasing of number of stray animals. Irresponsible or unregistered breeders and breeding contributes to increasing the number of stray animals.

Although it is their legal obligation, municipalities and cities refuse to finance the construction and maintenance of adequate shelters for stray animals, but rescuers and concerned citizens witness everyday improper and illegal spending of budget funds. Also false information about the cost of maintaining shelters is published. If violators of the provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals are punished, the funds raised from fines ought to be directed towards the construction and maintenance of shelters for stray animals. Also implementation of the Act of Protection and Welfare of Animals can be financed by funds collected from legally obligatory vaccination of dogs against rabies. Until shelters for stray animals are built, municipalities should finance the feeding of stray animals, and authorities are obliged to implement spay/neuter projects.

14225350_1114575611942665_3682593145194114853_nIf the shelters for stray animals, which must be “centres for care and adopting of stray animals,” are built and maintained in accordance with state regulations and law, and if there is an appropriate policy for establishing and managing shelters, the cost will be low. Quality education and raising awareness of the citizens will mean an increase in the percentage of adoption of abandoned animals.

Hygienic services are directly related to the existence of shelters for stray animals and because of this, the establishment of hygienic services cannot be an independent measure regarding decreasing the population of stray animals. Hygienic services must be established in accordance with the provisions of the laws on the establishment and the conditions that hygienic services must fulfil in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The purpose of a hygienic service is capturing and transport of stray animals to veterinary stations and shelters. Certainly the establishment of a legal  hygienic services is necessary, but hygienic services cannot exist and work without implementing all the other legal obligations of the authorities, especially without building shelters. If hygienic services work without implementing all the provisions and measures provided by the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, those services do not solve the problem and they are perfect grounds for different abuses and misuses of the laws.

22Only by full implementation of the Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals, will misuse and illegal killing in shelters and by hygienic services be prevented. Also, all responsible authorities such as the Veterinary Office, Veterinary inspection, authorised official veterinarians, police, etc., must be involved in the implementation of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, and it is their legal obligation. Authorities in Bosnia have failed to fulfil their legal obligations and many authorities that are responsible for implementation of the Act have actually violated the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals. Such illegal behaviour must be punished and prevented.

Prevention of abuse, which is particularly related to the fact that stray dogs can “disappear”,  is only possible by consistent implementation of all the measures stipulated by the Act on the protection and welfare of animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

You should be aware that the partial and manipulating misuse of Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, which has been in practice so far, only makes for an even greater and longer-lasting problem. The problem of overpopulation of stray dogs can be solved by the registration of ownership of dogs, engaging a certified trainer for the protection of animals to educate people, assistance in developing of a strategy to solve the problem of stray animals and finally the building self-sustaining shelters for stray animals.

Without complete and consistently implementing of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, the problem of overpopulation of stray animals will not be solved. It is important to end the illegal practice of partial implementation of the law which is a criminal offence and which causes the problem to become even more complicated and difficult to resolve.

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Please join Dalida’s Facebook group and AWABosnia Facebook group.

Related posts:
Dogs Have Become Public Enemy Number One
When Bosnian Activists do the Work of the Authorities
Bosnia: Let’s Respect Animals and their Right to Life
Dog Shelters in Bosnia: A Complex Situation
Veterinary Office of Bosnia: is it possible to solve the problem of stray dogs?
The “Aggressive” Dogs of Sarajevo
Stray Dogs of Sarajevo to be Killed in Election Ploy
Bosnia: Sarajevo set to become the next Bucharest
Horror Camps for Animals in Bosnia
ANTI KILL-LAW FIGHT CONTINUES
KILL-LAW DEBATE IN BOSNIA
BOSNIA ABOUT TO IMPLEMENT KILL LAW!
THE HORROR SHELTERS OF BOSNIA – SOMETHING MUST BE DONE!
Bosnia Killing Dogs – No Different to Romania!
Concentration Camp for Man’s Best Friend

 

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DONATIONS

Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there. Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

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Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

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This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.

Mass poisoning of stray dogs in Zenica, Bosnia

16114270_1190725531022637_6877927546708079613_nDalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist writes:

Once again an awful crime against stray dogs is being committed in Zenica.

As reported widely on online media portals, an unknown offender has poisoned a large number of stray dogs in the last few days, actively violating the Animal Protection and Welfare law of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the worst possible way.

16265802_1190720224356501_4475743961179128105_nThe law unequivocally prohibits indiscriminate killing of abandoned animals and prescribes punishment for abandoning and torturing abandoned animals. The Criminal Code of Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, specifically Article 318, defines torture and killing of animals as a criminal offense that carries a prison sentence of up to one year.

Citizens of Zenica as well as volunteers of the SAPA Zenica animal welfare organisation have found bodies of dead dogs in many parts of the town including on the streets in the city centre, in the doorways of buildings, in the city parks.

This crime has been reported to the local police as well as to the Prosecutor’s Office of Zenica – Doboj Canton.

Volunteers of SAPA have documented this situation, they have seen dogs dying in agony. Right now no one knows what poison is being used nor well who the offender(s) are.

16387260_1190725994355924_4219833290646125777_nSAPA Zenica are joined by people in the city who feed and love stray animals in their attempts to find out more regarding the possible offender(s) as well to save poisoned dogs who are still surviving.

Is it just a coincidence that this awful crime began after the Mayor of Zenica ordered stray dogs in Zenica to be caught?

This order is illegal in a number of ways:

The Zenica shelter for stray dogs has a capacity of 70 dogs, and yet a mass catching of stray dogs has begun. By law the shelters have to provide adequate and humane treatment of animals. Also, the hygienic services company engaged to catch these dogs does not fulfil conditions that are provided by the BiH Ordinance (laws) on the establishment of such companies and how they must conduct their service.

16388349_1190722191022971_6647876357361284454_nAccording to provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals every municipality is obliged to establish and finance shelters for stray animals as well as hygienic services that to catch and transport stray animals to veterinary stations and shelters.

Two very important ordinances were legislated in 2010: Ordinances on establishing and conditions that shelters for stray animals and hygienic services must fulfil. Both ordinances provide very strict and humane ways of establishing and maintaining of shelters and hygienic services. Bosnia and Herzegovina has one of the best animal welfare legislations in Europe, but the reality is different and the outcome cruel for stray animals.

This decision of the mayor of Zenica is illegal because the shelter has a capacity of 70 places and therefore there cannot be any action of mass catching of stray dogs. Also, registered and trained dog catchers can catch dogs, not ordinary workers of some company.

Video: WARNING VERY UPSETTING MATERIAL

For updates and to show your support, please go to SAPA Zenica’s Facebook Page. This organisation does incredible work and they are in desperate need of funds to continue saving the dogs of Zenica.

If you want to help with vet costs for the dogs who are in vet care, SAPA Zenica Paypal is sapazenica09@yahoo.com and please mark that it is for ‘surviving dogs of the poisonings’.

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SAPA Zenica was established in July 2009, as a local non-profit, non-governmental organization by a core group of volunteers and enthusiasts in the city of Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina. SAPA’s mission is, through the respect and caring for animals, to protect their rights and ultimately eliminate all forms of cruelty and exploitation of animals. SAPA’s vision is a society in which humans live in harmony with animals, respecting them and their needs.


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RELATED POSTS:
Article on AVAZ: Šokantni prizori na ulicama Zenice: Nastavljeno masovno trovanje pasa lutalica (FOTO/VIDEO) 

Poisoning of dogs ordered in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia
Monstrous Killing and Injuring of Stray Dogs in Zenica, Bosnia!
Dogs found slaughtered outside Shelter in Sarajevo
Puppy Flung off Bridge in Sarajevo, Bosnia
Puppy dies after horrific attack in Bosnia Herzegovina
Loved Street Dog Hanged in Gradiska, Bosnia!

Boy steals puppy and hangs it – Prnjavor, Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog’s Skull Deliberately Crushed in Bosnia Herzegovina

Another Dog Tortured by Wire in Bosnia
DOG TORTURED WITH WIRE IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA!
Puppy burned alive in Bosnia Herzegovina!
Dog Beheaded in Bosnia

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DONATIONS
Funds are needed not only to help individual rescues and to help us keep safe the rescued dogs we are sponsoring but also to continue our advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there.

On our sister site, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org as a ‘gift’. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

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Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific dog or cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

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This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Go here to find out how to help them.  Money is needed for food, medicine and foster housing. Even just one dollar or one euro will help.

Poisoning of dogs ordered in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia

15592551_10154339702341219_1779915915_nIn March of 2015 we published news of dogs poisoned in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia where strays were poisoned using a variety of methods including crushed glass being added to food, Demestos and other toxins. Many of the dogs killed had been sterilised in the local TNR campaignWe placed a call to action in our blog and on Facebook and asked you to email and fax the authorities in Donji Vakuf. Many of you did, and we learned that this had a positive result, with a reduction in these illegal, inhumane poisonings. However, we have just been informed that it’s starting up again, that a mass poisoning of strays is once again being organised. AGAIN WE NEED YOUR HELP TO STOP THIS! All details on who to contact, with draft letters to email are towards the end of this blog.

What is occurring in Donji Vakuf is a violation of the Animal Protection and Welfare law of Bosnia and Herzegovina and is happening in populated areas, as before. 

15595612_10154342074891219_1835113338_oA concerned citizen told us: “First, let me try to explain how these non-humans operate. They are completely organised. In this town, no one can do anything without the police knowing. So I’m sure the police are involved. Half an hour ago I passed one part of town and there was not a single dog. Three days ago there were at least  20 street dogs in this area. My assumption is that people from hunting associations are poisoning dogs by order of the mayor of the municipality but there is no proof. I am doing everything I can to track and document what is happening. I know the hunter’s vehicles. But so far I have no proof. Very likely they finish their work and I am too late to witness it. I reported the poisoning that happened last year, and this year I asked the police how far has the investigation progressed. They answered that they did not even have a blood sample analysis and that all dogs are listed as “allegedly” poisoned. The third participant in the poisoning is the utility company that quickly removes corpses, so I have only pictures of 2 poisoned dogs.All dogs are poisoned in the city’s populated area. I believe at least 50 dogs have been poisoned but I only have pictures of just two of the dogs, due the rapid removal of corpses.

I just pray that you can somehow put pressure on the municipal authorities. Please write articles, blogs. Please send emails because I know they read them and they retreat when they receive an email or fax from the EU or the USA. If an association for the protection of animals in the EU reacted, they would re-think what they are doing. Especially put pressure on the Municipal Council. I know of 21 councillors and not one is an animal lover.”

This concerned citizen has also asked everyone to contact the Landskrona municipality in Sweden. They are a big donor for development to the Donji Vakuf municipality. He asks us to please tell them them what they do with the dogs in Donji Vakuf. Details below.

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Dalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist tells us that an investigation is being conducted on the basis of her previous criminal report on poisonings in this area but the police are obstructing the investigation. Dalida told us: “I will take all necessary actions to stop this. It means that I will try to force the prosecutors to send an inspector from the Cantonal police instead of police officers from Vakuf itself.

Last year dogs were poisoned on the city streets, in the doorways of buildings, in the city parks. The Veterinary Station of Donji Vakuf confirmed poison was used to kill the dogs, given the symptoms, and they stated that half the dogs killed had been sterilised in the local campaign.

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This brutal means to tackle a stray dog problem will have consequences on the consciousness of younger generations, sending a message that breaking the law goes unpunished and that it is acceptable to torture and kill animals. The silence of the inspectors, veterinarians, and police, who do nothing to investigate these atrocities and punish the perpetrators is shocking.

In Bosnia and Herzegovina torture and killing animals is a common occurrence. In adults the offence is punishable by fine or imprisonment, however the arrest and prosecution of perpetrators of such crimes very rarely occur.

You will find links to other reports of such crimes at the end of this blog.

FIVE THINGS YOU CAN DO TO HELP. Do not forget to email the authorities listed below in Sweden (number 2 on the list).

1. Please send emails and faxes to the officials involved in the Donji Vakuf municipality below, letting them know you are aware of what is happening and that it contravenes the laws of the country. Please ask them to ensure this incident does not discourage further sterilisation programs, that they must  engage the support of the local police and media in implementing these programs. Please ask them to investigate this crime and to ensure that the populace are informed about the animal welfare laws of the country and the humane procedures that can be successfully enforced to ensure control of stray dog populations, and that in fact killing animals is not a solution, on the contrary, the problem is further complicated because animals migrate and the territory of the killed dogs becomes occupied by other, less socialized individuals.

Huso Sušić, Mayor of Donji Vakuf
Email: huso.susic@donji-vakuf.ba
Fax: + 387 30 509-615

Chief of Inspections Sector
Muhamed Sijamija
Email: muhamed.sijamija@donji-vakuf.ba
Fax:+ 387 30  509-615

Municipality of Donji Vakuf 
Email: opcinadv@bih.net.ba
Fax: + 387 30 / 509-615

Nedžad Karahodžić  (Komandir/Zapovjednik – police chief) 
Policijska stanica Donji Vakuf
Telephone-fax copy + 387 30-205-550
Emails: mupsbk@bih.net.ba
glasnogovornik@muptravnik.com.ba
administracija@muptravnik.com.ba

Zvonko Mandić
Inspectorate: Odsjek inspekcije Bugojno
Fax +387 30 251 051
E-mail: sbkprivreda@bih.net.ba

Ivica Sivonjić – Assistant Chief, Travnic Municipality:
Phone and fax: + 387 (o) 30 511 791/ (0) 30 511 277 ext 214
E-mail address: ivica.sivonjic@opcinatravnik.com.ba

You may use the following letter as a draft. Please personalise the letter, addressing the person you are sending it to, and signing it with your name:

*****

Dear

We have been informed about the  recent illegal poisoning and killing of dogs in Donji Vakuf. We are aware that this occurred last year, and that it caused an international outcry. We ask that you ensure, once again, that the perpetrators of this vile act are brought to justice, and that the citizens of your municipality are educated regarding the effective and legal method of curbing the stray dog population: TNR (trap, neuter, release). We ask you to ensure the government authorities, the police, the local media and the veterinary inspectorate work together in implementing the BiH animal welfare laws and continue to implement sterilisation of stray dogs. 

The animal welfare laws of Bosnia Herzegovina are good, applicable laws but the issue of the failure of the BiH authorities to apply even the barest minimum of the law to ensure the safety of the animals must be immediately addressed. We are sure you are aware of the numerous studies showing that those who are cruel to animals are very likely to commit crimes against people. Furthermore, if you do not bring the perpetrators to justice, you send a message to the younger generations that breaking the law goes unpunished and that it is acceptable to torture and kill animals.

We urge you to implement internationally agreed-upon guiding principles on humane stray dog population control and management and allocate resources to ensure such principles are followed in an ongoing and systematic manner, which is the only viable solution to curbing stray dog and cat populations.

Yours,

*****

2. Please contact the Landskrona municipality in Sweden and their embassy in Bosnia. They are a big donor to the Donji Vakuf municipality please tell them them what they do with the dogs in Donji Vakuf: 
Landskrona Municipality Facebook Page with contact details:
https://www.facebook.com/Landskronastad/
Their website: http://www.landskrona.se/
Their contact details:
Monday-Friday 7:30 to 17:00
Telephone: +46 (0) 418-47 00 00
23 December and 30 December, the switchboard is open 7:30 to 12:00
Address: City Hall, Drottninggatan 7, Landskrona, Sweden
email: kommun@landskrona.se
Email of the Swedish embassy in Bosnia: ambassaden.sarajevo-visum@gov.se
Tel +387 33 27 60 37
Fax: +387 33 27 60 61

Copy of a letter you can send to the Swedish authorities is at the end of this blog.

3. Email your Embassy in Bosnia-Herzegovina, asking them to work with the Bosnian authorities to ensure that the animal welfare laws of the country are enforced, that the citizens are educated in studies showing there is a direct link between animal cruelty and cruelty to humans, and that the most effective means of stray animal population control is through consistently applied sterilisation programs. To find your embassy, go here: http://embassy.goabroad.com/embassies-in/bosnia-and-herzegovina

4. Contact any international animal welfare organisations you know, asking them to send letters as per the instructions above.

5. In order to investigate these contraventions of the Animal Welfare Law, activists need support. If you can assist in funding legal investigations please donate as per the instructions below via Paypal to donations@awabosnia.org, but make sure to mark your donation as ‘VAKUF’. We can also use funds to help poisoned dogs who survive but need veterinary care. Please join the AWABosnia Facebook group for updates.

COPY OF LETTER YOU CAN SEND TO SWEDISH EMBASSY (with thanks to Dalida Kozlic for drafting this for us)

Dear Ambassador Lars-Gunnar Wigemark,

Since the city Landskrona helps development of the municipality of Donji Vakuf in Bosnia and Herzegovina, as well as having a partnership relationship with Donji Vakuf, officials and authorities of Landskrona need to be aware of illegal and cruel atrocities that are currently happening in Donji Vakuf.

In March of 2015 stray dogs were poisoned using a variety of methods including crushed glass being added to food, bleach and other toxins. Many of the dogs killed had been sterilised in the local TNR campaign.

Please see the following information:
https://inmemoryofvucko.org/2015/03/10/dogs-poisoned-in-donji-vakuf-bosnia/

https://inmemoryofvucko.org/2015/04/14/official-investigation-ordered-into-donji-vakuf-dog-poisoning/

Unfortunately, another illegal and mass killing of stray dogs started in Donji Vakuf a few days ago. Dogs are being poisoned. Updates about this crime can be found also on the blog In Memory of Vucko above.

This is a violation of the Animal Protection and Welfare law of Bosnia and Herzegovina and is occurring in populated areas, as before.

Also, I want to inform you about the background of these atrocities that is connected with organised crime on the highest level of political organisation.

As you know, the Bosnian War was an international armed conflict that took place in Bosnia and Herzegovina between 1992 and 1995. Casualties of the war were not only people. Animals also were casualties and suffered a lot during the war. Bosnia and Herzegovina did not have an animal Protection and Welfare Act until 2009. The animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Herzegovina was legislated and entered into force by Parliamentary Assembly in 2009. This Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals is one of the best in Europe but nevertheless corrupt authorities are often involved in illegal killing of stray and wild animals because of money laundering.

Stray animals are victims of notorious abuse. Politically eligible people construct so-called shelters for stray animals, which really only have the a function of a concentration camp and then the officials invoice for false spay/neuter programs, as well as for food that is not in fact given to animals. Fake invoices are created for veterinary examinations and treatment, and the means for euthanasia. In reality, stray animals are being abused, harmed, and killed in the worst possible ways, by methods which the medieval Inquisition would envious. It is illegal and represents a series of violations of Criminal law as well as Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Actually the Animal Protection and Welfare Act is an absolutely enforceable and functional law and that is not enforced because of political interests and personal enrichment as above.

The problem in Bosnia and Herzegovina is that the protection of animals is often identified with the financial situation in the country. It is a complete absurdity. Cases of animal abuse are not considered as awful, illegal acts and animal rescuers are presented as “fools” and people who “do not have anything better to do.” This shows that the society does not understand or concern themselves with beings unable to fight for themselves and their rights, as well as having a complete lack of empathy for those who suffer.

Prosecution of the perpetrators of  crimes against animals very rarely occur. It is evident that it is not a necessary training of police officers, nor for prosecutors and judges. When it comes to the response of police officers, it usually goes in the direction that cases of animal abuse are considered an unimportant offence. Police officers and inspectors are not familiar with all the consequences and symptoms that animal abuse represents.

The problem of judicial institutions is similar.

The problem of overpopulation of stray dogs in Bosnia is a direct consequence of the failure to implement the laws, as well as a series of obstructions and misuse of the Act on the Protection and Welfare of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals of Bosnia and Herzegovina is a lex specialis (the main legislation) in the field of treating animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Act, as well as related by-laws, are the main legal framework for all other laws and by-laws that are legislated by the legislative authorities at any level of organization of authority in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

By attempting only a partial and non-systematic implementation of the Act, the suffering of stray dogs on the streets will only widen further, and budget funds will be spent on non-purpose, illegal and unsystematic attempts to solve the problem. Instead of solving the problem with legal solutions, authorities have been financing the killing of stray animals in illegal pounds for years. Financing of illegal pounds is a violation of the provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, as well as a serious offence in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Failure to implement the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals is the result of a series of abuses and obstructions as well as of the authorities dealing only with consequences and not with the causes of the problem, and the causes are the abandonment of animals, irresponsible ownership and uncontrolled reproduction.

Increased numbers of dogs on the streets is always and only a direct result of irresponsible ownership, and failure to implement preventive measures that are provided by the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, such as punishing those who abandon animals, the full identification of ownership and pets, implementing spay/neuter projects with vaccination and tagging of stray animals in an appropriate form and number, and education and information campaigns which are aimed to raise public awareness about the causes of the problem.

The Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals very clearly and precisely provides solutions for dealing with an overpopulation of stray animals in Bosnia. The first legal obligation of authorities is to build shelters for stray animals, whose purpose is to give good care for stray animals until they are adopted. Another legal obligation of the authorities is the registration of ownership of animals.

Finally, after seven years the State Veterinary Office enacted the laws on registration, micro-chipping and identification of ownership of animals Bosnia and Herzegovina, but it has not yet established a unified register of ownership of animals. Abandoning of animals by their owners is a direct generator of the problem, and the cause of abandoning of animals is the policy of impunity of people who abandon their animals. The only way to solve this problem is for municipalities and cantons to establish their own registries of ownership of animals, and this will significantly contribute to improving the situation in the canton, and then the entity and state level. Sarajevo Canton authorities have already been offered software for the registration of ownership of animals.

If the registry of tagged animals and owners of animals is established, it will enable the identification, prosecution and punishment of people who abandon animals. The implementation of repressive measures will directly affect the consciousness of citizens and achieve the function of a general and special prevention and repression. Because of the absence of a register of breeders, illegal breeding causes an increasing of number of stray animals. Irresponsible or unregistered breeders and breeding contributes to increasing the number of stray animals.

Although it is their legal obligation, municipalities and cities refuse to finance the construction and maintenance of adequate shelters for stray animals because of poor financial conditions, but rescuers and concerned citizens witness everyday improper and illegal spending of budget funds. Also false information about the cost of maintaining shelters is published. If violators of the provisions of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals are punished, the funds raised from fines ought to be directed towards the construction and maintenance of shelters for stray animals. Also implementation of the Act of Protection and Welfare of Animals can be financed by funds collected from legally obligatory vaccination of dogs against rabies. Until shelters for stray animals are built, municipalities can assist by financing the feeding of stray animals, and authorities are obliged to implement spay/neuter projects.

If the shelters for stray animals, which must be “centres for treatment and adopting of stray animals,” are built and maintained in accordance with state regulations and law, and if there is an appropriate policy for establishing and managing shelters, the cost will be low. Quality education and raising awareness of the citizens will mean an increase in the percentage of adoption of abandoned animals.

Hygienic services are directly related to the existence of shelters for stray animals and because of this, the establishment of hygienic services cannot be an independent measure to solve the problem and to decrease the population of stray animals. Hygienic services must be established in accordance with the provisions of the law on the establishment and the conditions that hygienic services must fulfil in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The purpose of a hygienic service is capturing and transport of stray animals to veterinary stations and shelters. Certainly the establishment of a legal  hygienic services is necessary, but hygienic services cannot exist and work without implementing all the other legal obligations of the authorities, especially without building shelters. If hygienic services work without implementing all the provisions and measures provided by the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, those services do not solve the problem and they are perfect grounds for different abuses and misuses of the laws.

Only by full implementation of Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals, misuse and illegal killing in shelters and hygienic services can be prevented. Also, all responsible authorities such as the Veterinary Office, Veterinary inspection, authorised official veterinarians, police, etc., must be involved in the implementation of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, and it is their legal obligation. Authorities in Bosnia have failed to fulfil their legal obligations and many authorities that are responsible for implementation of the Act have actually violated the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals. Such illegal behaviour must be punished and prevented.

Preventing of abuse, which are particularly related to the fact that stray dogs can “disappear” is only possible by consistent implementation of all the measures stipulated by the Act on the protection and welfare of animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

You should be aware that the partial and manipulating misuse of Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, which has been in practice so far, only makes an even greater and longer-lasting problem. The problem of overpopulation of stray dogs can be solved by the registration of ownership of dogs, engaging a certified trainer for the protection of animals to educate people, assistance in developing of a strategy to solve the problem of stray animals and finally the building self-sustaining shelters for stray animals.

Without complete and consistently implementing of the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals, the problem of overpopulation of stray animals will not be solved. It is important to end the illegal practice of partial implementation of the law which is a criminal offence and which causes the problem to become even more complicated and difficult.

In this particular case the city of Landskrona can help us to stop mass killing of stray dogs with its political and financial influence on authorities of Donji Vakuf and therefore I must emphasise that if money from the budget of Landskrona is used to finance development of Donji Vakuf, your moral obligation is to act in this case and require immediate action of authorities.

Yours.
__________________________
Email this particular letter to: kommun@landskrona.se
And to:  ambassaden.sarajevo-visum@gov.se
___________________________
Related posts:

Hunters Killing Dogs Again
Official Investigation Ordered into Donji Vakuf Dog Poisoning
Dogs Poisoned in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia
Another Mass Killing of Dogs in Bosnia
Dogs Brutally Slaughtered in Bosnia HerzegovinaPuppy dies after horrific attack in Bosnia Herzegovina

Loved Street Dog Hanged in Gradiska, Bosnia!

Boy steals puppy and hangs it – Prnjavor, Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog’s Skull Deliberately Crushed in Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog Slaughter in Mostar, Bosnia Herzegovina

Yet another brutal dog murder in Bosnia Herzegovina
Another Dog Tortured by Wire in Bosnia
DOG TORTURED IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA!
More than 40 killed dogs found in garbage dump
Poisoning of Dogs and Cats in Glamoc, Bosnia Herzegovina
Puppy burned alive in Bosnia Herzegovina!
Mass Murder of Dogs in Bosnia Herzegovina
Dog Massacre in Dobosnica, Bosnia Herzegovina
Mass Poisoning of Dogs in Bugojno, Bosnia
Dog Beheaded in Bosnia

_____________________________________________
DONATIONS

Funds are needed not only to help individual rescues but also to continue our advocacy work in Bosnia Herzegovina, uncovering the truth about what is happening there.

On our sister site, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org . Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific dog or cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Go here to find out how to help them.  Money is needed for food, medicine and foster housing. Even just one dollar or one euro will help.

Hunters Killing Dogs Again

15401413_10209780245296466_1718022661_nDalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist writes:

Before the legislation of the Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals in 2009, organised groups of hunters killed stray dogs in all cities in Bosnia Herzegovina, even during the middle of the day. It was illegal, but no one wanted to investigate or punish the hunters because they received money from Bosnian municipalities for these atrocities.

The law for the  Protection and Welfare of Animals of Bosnia and Herzegovina was legislated and entered into force by Parliamentary Assembly in 2009. This law is very specific about what methods can be used to catch stray dogs: by hygienic services and these services must use every available and legal method. If these services fail to catch stray dogs using these methods, and if, and only if, these dogs are killing wild animals, then hunters are allowed to kill the dogs, but only in areas 300 metres or more away from houses.

Many hunting organisations ignore the law and still kill stray dogs in villages as well as rural areas in Bosnia even when those dogs are not causing harm to wild animals.

On the 19th November, a group of dogs who had lived in a landfill site in Breza, near Sarajevo, were killed by a group of local hunters.

Citizens of the village Kamenice, found a dead body of a dog that had been fed by local people. There were wounds from a gunshot all over the corpse.

This is not the first time this has happened in this particular landfill site. There are pictures and videos that prove that local hunters kill stray dogs in this village and criminal reports have been filled with Police station in Breza as well as with the Prosecutor’s office of Zenica – Doboj Canton.

The main inspector for hunting organisations has been officially informed about this crime and we are waiting the results of his investigation.

The hunting organisation that is established in Breza is a notorious hunting organisation. Many of its members have been reported and investigated due to killing of stray dogs, torturing of animals, as well as illegal hunting.

Despite the fact that Bosnia Herzegovina has one of the best animal welfare laws in Europe, torture and killing animals is a common occurrence. In adults the offence is punishable by fine or imprisonment, however the arrest and prosecution of perpetrators of such crimes very rarely occur. Implementation of the law is obstructed in part because of money laundering activities. However, animal welfare activists will not cease trying to bring perpetrators to justice.

Related posts:

Slaughter of stray dogs at landfill site, Bosnia
Slaughter of stray dogs in Bosanska Krupa, Bosnia

Puppy Flung off Bridge in Sarajevo, Bosnia
Brutal Murder of Dogs in Zenica, Bosnia

Extermination of dogs at Breza Coal Mine, Bosnia

Mass killing of stray dogs in Banovici, Bosnia

Dogs Poisoned in Donji Vakuf, Bosnia

Another Mass Killing of Dogs in Bosnia

Dogs Brutally Slaughtered in Bosnia HerzegovinaPuppy dies after horrific attack in Bosnia Herzegovina

Loved Street Dog Hanged in Gradiska, Bosnia!

Boy steals puppy and hangs it – Prnjavor, Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog’s Skull Deliberately Crushed in Bosnia Herzegovina

Dog Slaughter in Mostar, Bosnia Herzegovina

Yet another brutal dog murder in Bosnia Herzegovina
Another Dog Tortured by Wire in Bosnia
DOG TORTURED IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA!
More than 40 killed dogs found in garbage dump
Poisoning of Dogs and Cats in Glamoc, Bosnia Herzegovina
Puppy burned alive in Bosnia Herzegovina!
Mass Murder of Dogs in Bosnia Herzegovina
Dog Massacre in Dobosnica, Bosnia Herzegovina
Mass Poisoning of Dogs in Bugojno, Bosnia
Dog Beheaded in Bosnia

_____________________________________________
DONATIONS

Funds are needed not only to help individual rescues but also to continue our advocacy work in Bosnia Herzegovina, uncovering the truth about what is happening there.

On our sister site, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org . Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific dog or cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Go here to find out how to help them.  Money is needed for food, medicine and foster housing. Even just one dollar or one euro will help.

Seven Years of Lobbying for National Pet Register in Bosnia Comes to Fruition

screen-shot-2016-11-13-at-22-47-18Dalida Kozlic L.L.B, lawyer and activist writes:

The BiH Council of Ministers have just passed a long awaited by-Law on the identification and keeping of a registry of dogs and cats. All rescuers have waited for this for years. It’s a critically important law covering the implementation and endorsement of a registry and central database at the state level for owned companion animals, and as such is a pre-requisite to fuller implementation of the laws against animal abuse, abandoning pets and so on. Who knows how long will it take for the State Veterinary office to put into place an operational database and ensure local level vet station endorsement and data flow, but at least the first formal step is finally in place.

screen-shot-2016-11-13-at-22-50-18In 2009 the Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals of Bosnia and Herzegovina was legislated and entered into force by the BiH Parliamentary Assembly. Torturing and killing animals is a criminal offence in Bosnia and Herzegovina. According the Act, every municipality is obliged to establish and finance shelters for stray animals and hygienic services are obliged to catch and transport stray animals to the veterinary stations and shelters. Two very important laws were legislated in 2010: laws which concern the establishment of and conditions within shelters for stray animals and how hygienic services must undertake their activities. These laws provide very strict and humane procedures for establishing and maintaining shelters and hygienic services.

Overall, Bosnia and Herzegovina has one of the best animal welfare legislations in Europe, but the reality is different and cruel for stray animals.

The animal welfare laws of BiH are in fact extensive and cover the responsibility of people regarding the protection and welfare of animals in terms of: breeding/keeping, providing shelter and food, protecting from torture, animal protection in the process of slaughtering, being exposed to stress while transported, wildlife protection; treatment of abandoned animals, pets and laboratory animals, establishing ethics committees and expert councils/boards concerning the welfare of animals.

screen-shot-2016-11-13-at-22-51-05The Ministry Council of Bosnia and Herzegovina has just enacted the Ordinance on registration, microchipping and identification of ownership of animals in Bosnia and Herzegovina, seven years after the Act on Protection and Welfare of Animals had been legislated.

Despite the fact that rescuers, activists and all domestic and foreign animal advocates had been waiting for so long, the legislation of this by-law is a huge success for many reasons.

The increased numbers of dogs on the streets is always and only a direct result of irresponsible ownership and a direct result of the failure of the authorities to implement preventive measures that are provided by the Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals. The authorities do not punish those who abandon animals, they have not ensured the full identification of ownership of pets, have not adequately ensured spay/neuter projects with vaccination and tagging of stray animals in an appropriate form and number, and have not created education and information campaigns aimed to raise public awareness about the causes of the problem. Furthermore, because of the lack of a register of breeders, irresponsible and unregistered breeders also creates an increasing of number of stray animals.

The stray dog and cat populations are a result of all of these failures.

screen-shot-2016-11-13-at-22-51-28Enacting this by-law on the identification and keeping of a registry of dogs and cats will force the Veterinary Office to establish a national database of pets which will enable veterinary inspectors to punish those who abandon animals in Bosnia. The fine for abandoning a pet is 5000 Euros in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This is eight month’s salary for the average citizen in the country. Until now, violators of the Act for the Protection and Welfare of Animals could not be punished because such a national database of pets did not exist, and the database could not be established because this ordinance was not legislated.

Of course, it will take some time for the Veterinary Office to implement this Ordinance on registration, microchipping and identification of ownership of animals and it will require further lobbying but enacting of the ordinance is a huge step forward.

The implementation of the law will directly affect the consciousness of citizens, encouraging them to make different choices regarding their pets. Once the registry of tagged animals and owners of animals is created, it will enable the authorities to identify, prosecute and punish those who abandon or abuse animals.

If you want to support the strays of Bosnia please join Dalida’s Facebook group and AWABosnia Facebook group.

_____________________________________________

DONATIONS

Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there. Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

paypal_banner

Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

______________________________________________

This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.

Dogs Have Become Public Enemy Number One

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-39-48Interview with Dalida Kozlic L.L.B, in “Tacno“, 8 September 2016
Author: Predrag Blagovcanin
Translator: Jelena Martinelli, www.sprachenboutique.com

Dogs have become public enemy number one and the lightning rod for a society which suffers from all kinds of problems. If this society thinks about how to kill as many dogs as possible rather than how to make a living, here the problem starts. We are a psychopathic society that suffers from mass aggression and a society that has misdirected its aggression.

“All his life my father has been rescuing abandoned dogs. Already in Ex-Yugoslavia he was fighting against hunters and the killings of dogs in the streets. In August 2004 we barely survived a shooting in front of our family house that a member of the Breza hunting society had started and during which a dog was killed right in front of my eyes. This was the point in time when in addition to being a rescuer I became an activist and lobbyist for the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina. After I graduated from law school I continued my fight through legal protection of animals.”

Dalida Kozlic is an activist for legal protection of animals. For years she has been drawing public attention to the consequences of the non-implementation of the Animal Protection and Welfare Act. For her rescue efforts and hints at financial corruption and the non-transparent public spending with respect to abandoned animals, Dalida and her family continue to suffer pressures from the local government. This interview was done after her father Eldar Kozlic was physically attacked in the premises of the municipality of Breza earlier this month. We also have spoken about the decision of the Sarajevo Canton to remove all abandoned and stray dogs from the streets for community safety reasons, the relationship between the citizens and the officials who fail to solve the problem, the politicization of this issue and other topics…

Tacno: Last week your father was physically attacked in the premises of the municipality of Breza. Can you tell us what preceded this attack and why you and your family have been under constant pressure from the local administration in this municipality?

Dalida Kozlic: In 2013 my father Eldar Kozlic and myself learned that one part of the abandoned dogs, that were in the city centre of Breza, had been caught and brought from the territory of Breza to the hunting grounds of the municipality of Ilijas. Some of the municipality officials were involved in this. The problems started, after my father and myself had reported this to the authorities in charge: First we came under attack by our neighbor Edin Velic, who was campaigning and collecting signatures against us, because we were keeping dogs on our property. Later it turned out, that most of the signatures were falsified. Many other pressures started against my family. During the trial Edin Velic admitted that he was influenced and pressured by municipality officials to give us a hard time because of our battle for animal welfare. Then, the cantonal veterinary inspection checked our premises and confirmed that our dogs were well nourished, vaccinated, medically checked and that the boxes in which they were accommodated fulfilled all the requirements of the Regulation concerning protection of dogs, who are kept as pets in Bosnia and Hercegovina. Later on we learned, that the officer for economic affairs and deputy mayor of the Breza municipality, Salih Hasanspahic, had put pressure literally every day on the veterinary inspection to issue an unfavorable report. Nevertheless, the cantonal veterinary inspection followed the findings of the local sanitary inspection: they too confirmed that all sanitary requirements were fulfilled, dogs were kept properly and that there was a sewage system. It became quiet for a while, but it seemed to be like the calm before the storm: As soon as I continued to report a series of animal abuses in Breza and killings of dogs in the county of “Rudnik Mrkog Ulja Breza”, the pressure was back on.

Then, a new decision regarding the treatment of abandoned dogs and pets was taken on the community level, and, without any legal basis, a new community inspector Elsada Sehovic took office. She too issued a report confirming that the dogs were kept in accordance to the law, however she decided that my dad had to remove the dogs from the property.

I want to emphasize that it was Muris Nuhanovic, donor to the party “Association for a better future Bosnia and Hercegovina”, who had reported us to the local inspection. This party did everything they could to change the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina, although they failed, and they are promoting killing as a solution. Also it is important to know that Muris Nurhanovic is our neighbor who I have reported to the police because of the brutal stoning of a dog, for which there is also photo evidence. The dog is safe, and against Muris Nuhanovic an investigation is being carried out. He had reported us to the local inspection after he was summoned as a suspect concerning this criminal offence. His complaint against the decision has been rejected in an accelerated procedure, while I have initiated a legal action against the local administration which is still not closed.

Once the community officials realized that they would lose the legal battle and that they could not influence my work, Halil Tuzlic, the mayor, asked for cooperation during a meeting with my father and me, and suggested that the municipality of Breza offer a piece of land where a dog shelter could be built and thus the Animal Welfare and Protection Act implemented. He asked us to help with our contacts and especially wanted me to help with the legal work and the supervision of the shelter.

Salih Hasanspahic was responsible for the coordination. The time limit to find a property was one month.  However, after two months even there was no concrete proposal, since he insisted that me and my family had to solve the entire problem of the abandoned dogs in the municipality of Breza, that the community bore no responsibility at all and that we moved our dogs to this shelter. It also turned out that he deliberately obstructed the whole process in order to put through his own interests.

My father made an appointment with him on the 2nd September 2016 in his office in the Breza town hall. When my father entered Salih Hasanspahic’s office, Salih left the office and came back in with Edin Velic. My father reacted saying that he had nothing to talk about with them. Right after that, Salih calls in Muris Nuhanovic and the local inspector and locks the office. My father tells them that he is being kept hostage, that there is nothing to discuss and demands to be set free immediately. Salih is not willing to unlock the door and tells my father that he is going to “stay until dawn if it’s necessary to solve “their” problem”. Now Muris Nuhanovic attacks my father several times who cannot leave the office, while Salih refuses to unlock the door. All this lasts for about 15 minutes, when Salih finally opens the door after Nuhanovic had tried to punch my father.

My father immediately goes to the police office, which is 50 meters away from the town hall building. The police officers find them still on site, and the criminal investigation department immediately takes over the case since there are several criminal offences involved. The public prosecution department is in charge of the case. I would like to emphasize that the illegal restraint committed by Salih Hasanspahic is especially important, and it is also very significant that it happened right on the first day of the election campaign, which is noteworthy, since I have noticed a certain resistance from Salih Hasanspahic to follow orders from the mayor, as well as a resistance against the mayor personally. The public prosecution department of the Canton of Doboj-Zenica has to take the case very seriously and take all measures foreseen by law to punish the perpetrators. This was an attempted lynching of a family that takes care of 120 dogs, which we have taken from the streets, which again would have been the duty of municipality authorities, and a family who is fighting for the implementation of the act.

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-39-28

Tacno: The latest decision of the government of the Canton of Sarajevo to remove all the dogs from the streets of Sarajevo has upset the animal welfare organizations. Why?

Dalida Kozlic: The decision taken by the government of the Canton of Sarajevo on the session of the 30th June 2016, which orders catching of abandoned dogs on a massive scale on the territory of the Sarajevo Canton, is not only a gross violation of the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina but also a serious form of organized business crime. This decision was preceded by the preparation of the project “Monitoring of zoonotic infectious and parasitic diseases in the population of abandoned dogs in the Canton of Sarajevo”. Project executors were the cantonal public company KJP “Veterinarska stanica d.o.o. Sarajevo”, the Veterinary faculty in Sarajevo and the Cantonal administration for inspection – the Inspectorate for the veterinary inspection. The value of the project was KM 133’000 (USD 76’000). The mentioned large-scale catching of dogs had been entrusted to the cantonal public waste management company KJKP “Rad d.o.o. Sarajevo” and KJP “Veterinarska stanica d.o.o. Sarajevo”. Responsible for the execution of the above mentioned decision was the ministry of public utilities and infrastructure of the Sarajevo Canton, while the decision and the project were financed from the budget of the Canton of Sarajevo. The Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina bans any type of experimenting and unauthorized testing on abandoned animals, while the veterinary laws and regulations of Bosnia and Hercegovina state that only the Veterinary Office of Bosnia and Hercegovina is allowed to undertake projects to determine and control diseases of any origin in the population. The scandalous, inhumane and illegal way of treating captured dogs is best observed in the example of the illegal shelter in Zunovnica. It is confirmed also through photos taken in the mentioned building, that dogs are obviously held without food and water, that they are starved and skinny and that they are literally lying in their own feces which have not been removed for a long period of time. They are exposed to contagion, they are running the risk of injuring one another, and because of these inhumane conditions they die in agony. Also, we have found out, that the dogs are taken for neutering/spaying and then are brought back not just to a dirty place, but to a place covered with feces. Zunovica is literally a concentration camp and the most horrific example of the breaking of many laws by the cantonal government itself, which spends tax money on this horrific torture of abandoned dogs.

Tacno: Can you as a lawyer explain to us, why to date the Animal Protection and Welfare Act still has not been fully implemented, although it has been adopted in 2009?

Dalida Kozlic: The Animal Protection and Welfare Act has not been implemented at all. Not because it is not possible or because it is too costly, but because in this way criminal activities become possible, just like those on the territory of the Sarajevo Canton. At first, after the act had been adopted, public authorities were not interested. Then they quickly realized that it was financially rewarding to offer illegal shelters and illegal sanitary services. There are many illegal shelters that have been set up by people who are close to politicians and people in power. These people set up illegal “shelters for abandoned animals” that are basically concentration camps, and then bill for fictitious veterinary services and food that never reaches the animals. They invoice for euthanasia drugs, while the abandoned animals are agonized and killed in the most brutal ways in these so called “shelters”. Also, according to the same principle, they set up illegal sanitary services and take money from the budgets of various municipalities. This way big money is stolen from the budgets at all levels of public administration, because, if you have legal shelters that accommodate the dogs conforming to the law, there is no possibility to steal money. If, on the contrary, you build a fence around a piece of land, where you put hundreds of dogs, for which you receive money while the dogs die of starvation, and at the same time you bill for many other “services”, then you get rich. This is the main reason why the act has not been implemented – because of organized business crime at the highest level.

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-40-21

Tacno: For years you have been pointing at the fact that enormous sums of public money have been taken from the budget to mitigate the effects of this problem. Is this the actual reason why there is no systemic solution?

Dalida Kozlic: First, the administration stated, that one dog in a shelter costs KM 157 (USD 90) per month, which is not true. But this unsubstantiated story has helped that the budget provides for unjustifiably high sums for illegal shelters and sanitary services. This way the public administration worsens the problem, since as long as there are dogs on the streets, there will be stealing money from the budget. The attempt to partially implement the act will only increase the agony of the abandoned dogs on the streets as well as that of the citizens, and budget money will be wasted for the umpteenth time to solve the problem in a nonsystematic way. Apart from the many abuses and obstructions during the execution of the act, today’s failure is also the result of public authorities focusing on the effects of the problem, i.e. killing the dogs, which by the way is a criminal act and a violation of the Animal Protection and Welfare Act of Bosnia and Hercegovina. At the same time the authorities in charge do not care about solving the root cause of the problem, which is the abandonment of the dogs and the uncontrolled reproduction.

Tacno: Who is responsible that through the indifference of the public authorities, the problem of the strays has grown from a local problem to a health and safety problem for the citizens of the Sarajevo Canton and others?

Dalida Kozlic: First and foremost, the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relation of Bosnia and Hercegovina, under which the Veterinary Office operates, which is responsible for the oversight and implementation of the mentioned act. The Veterinary Office of Bosnia and Hercegovina has been a passive bystander for years and with that is also an accomplice, because it does not perform the duties provided by law. Then the veterinary inspections which are not only not acting in those cases in which they are legally obliged in order to stop the horrors, but which even openly support the criminals. Then the public administration departments that did not fulfill their part of the obligations imposed by law, and that have artificially created a bigger problem, even though the obligations to systematically resolve the problem are clearly stated. Then the public prosecution office and the police who are not taking legal action against business crime and money laundering, and finally the citizens themselves, who have failed to demand that the federal act be implemented. The problem of the abandoned dogs has not endangered the health and safety of the citizens. Of course it is a problem that needs to be solved lawfully, and the sooner the law is executed the better. But the whole story about the threat to the citizens is just a pretext for this society, which suffers from mass aggression towards those who are weaker, to do whatever they want to those who cannot protect themselves. This is not a question of the human-animal relationship anymore; it’s about the future relationship of our children with their fellow humans.

Tacno: Has the resolution of the problem of abandoned animals become a politicized issue? In your opinion, why does it become a hot topic every time during an election campaign?

Dalida Kozlic: This is a political question, indeed, however, the periodic reissue of the story of how to resolve this problem, is not only a classical election campaign story. It is a story that has been created 3 years ago in order to draw attention away from much bigger problems. It is in the best interest of the authorities if there is an atmosphere of fear, and they have chosen the dogs to be public enemy number one. Post-war societies in general feel the need to vent their feelings of stress and frustration. Normal societies in post-war times focus on reconstruction and renewal. Unfortunately, our society is neither normal nor does it focus on renewal, instead the majority of our citizens are focused on non-existent issues. If people do not earn enough to meet their needs, they become dissatisfied. This can lead to changes. The authorities in Bosnia and Hercegovina always had the “perfect” way to fuel tensions through nationalism. Over time however, this was not enough anymore and they needed a new enemy. The dogs have taken this place. While our citizens tremble at the sight of an abandoned dog, they are not even aware how dangerous our society is, how high the crime and corruption rates are. While they warn their kids to stay away from the “dangerous” abandoned dogs, they fail to warn them of pedophiles, of which there are more than one would think in our society. Our citizens are so much focused on the story of the dogs; they have no idea what is going on around them.

Tacno: Has the public perception towards the people responsible for the problem changed, since very often animal welfare organizations are mentioned when it comes to responsibility for the street dogs?

Dalida Kozlic: The public perception has changed completely. First of all, the non-governmental sector has no institutional power whatsoever. These are true NGOs, people who are pointing out what needs to be improved, changed, but also what is illegal. Citizens need to be aware, that without activists, animal lovers, associations and citizens who just feed the strays, there would be up to 50% more dogs on the streets in certain areas. Can some citizens grasp that the law has clearly stated the responsibilities, obligations and competences to resolve this problem are the government’s jurisdiction, while the animal lovers and associations actually do the government’s job? We are the victims of emotional blackmail, since our only choice is to either take a dog or to leave him to the authorities for better or worse. If I say that I have 120 dogs under my care, what do the citizens think happens if I set them all free? On paper, everybody supports a united state of Bosnia and Hercegovina, but as soon as a part of the civil community promotes execution of a STATE law, then that civil community is made responsible for the problem they are, in fact, trying to solve. When in a meeting Dino Konakovic (prime minister of the Sarajevo Canton – translator’s note) says that he “couldn’t care less about a state law”, he basically says, that he is above the state, that he can do anything he likes. This is called a coup d’état. When associations and activists demand the law to be executed, then we are called crooks and liars, that we wish that there are dogs on the streets etc.… The citizens have to learn to demand that the laws be executed. We demand that. And if I say “we”, I mean every decent animal lover who does not want their money to be spent on bloodshed and finance crime.

Tacno: How can we solve the problem today? Can the issue of abandoned animals today, seven years after the enactment of the law, be solved just by executing this law?

Dalida Kozlic: When the number of the dogs on the streets increases, it is always and only the direct consequence of the behavior of irresponsible dog owners. Also, it is the consequence of the authorities’ failure to take preventive measures foreseen by the law: by not penalizing owners who abandon their dogs, by not enforcing full identification of ownership, by not following through with spaying and neutering projects and vaccinations. The authorities have failed to systematically mark the abandoned dogs, and failed to carry out education and information campaigns which should have raised public awareness about the causes of the problem. The mentioned law has determined a very clear and decided system how to solve the problem of abandoned dogs. The first legal obligation is to provide shelters with the goal of accommodating the animals until adoption. The modus operandi are described in the Regulation about forming shelters and the conditions that need to be fulfilled by the shelters for abandoned animals in Bosnia and Hercegovina. The second legal obligation in the system is the registration of pets. Until the construction of the shelters is finished, the municipalities can help with food for the abandoned animals, and of course they are obliged to spay and neuter the abandoned animals as prescribed by law. Should the shelters, which are supposed to be “centers for adoption and medical aid for abandoned animals”, be built and maintained in accordance with the public regulations, and as long the shelters are managed professionally, the costs will not be huge. With a good information campaign and by raising public awareness, the number of adoptions will increase.

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Tacno: To what extent are the dogs in our society stigmatized because of the neglect by the local administration and the responsible institutions, as well as because of the unprofessional journalistic reporting?

Dalida Kozlic: People are afraid of dogs; dogs are the subject of discussion and debate. Meanwhile we are one of the poorest and the most miserable country in the whole of Europe, so the deprived people take their frustration out on those who cannot protect themselves. Dogs are a channel for the anger people should feel towards those who are responsible for the way we live today. Dogs have become public enemy number one and the lightning rod for a society which suffers from all kinds of problems. If this society thinks about how to kill as many dogs as possible rather than how to make a living, here the problem starts. We are a psychopathic society that suffers from mass aggression and a society that has misdirected its aggression.

******
Interview on Tacno: Dalida Kozlić: Psi su vještački stvorena meta i proglašeni su zlom u društvu

If you want to support Dalida in her work, what she needs most is support to keep her rescues safe so she can not worry about fundraising and focus on her legal work fighting for the rights of strays of Bosnia. This month there are two YouCarings for her:

For food for over 100 rescues:

screen-shot-2016-10-12-at-21-36-23Pension (kennel) costs for 45 rescues:

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Please read related articles/blogs on this site for more information:

Money laundering behind killing of stray dogs in Sarajevo
Evidence of crimes against dogs ignored!
Illegal Catching and Killing of Dogs in Sarajevo
Terror for strays on the streets of Sarajevo
Stray Dogs in Sarajevo: a documentary
Dog Catchers of Sarajevo: Latest news
Disturbing Irregularities found in Dog Catching Service of Sarajevo
The Dog Catchers of Sarajevo are Back
Pope’s Visit to Sarajevo Means Death for Dogs

Sarajevo Demonstrations Against Illesgal Dog Catchers
Former Military Base in Sarajevo involved in dog killing?
“DOG-CATCHERS” OF SARAJEVO CAUGHT IN ACTION!
AUTHORISED SLAUGHTER OF DOGS IN SARAJEVO
2014: What is happening to the strays of Bosnia Herzegovina?

Animal Advocates Assaulted in Sarajevo
Bosnia: Let’s Respect Animals and their Right to Life
Veterinary Office of Bosnia: is it possible to solve the problem of stray dogs?
The “Aggressive” Dogs of Sarajevo
The Campaign Begins With a Slaughter: You will kill the dogs, but what will you do with the beasts?
Stray Dogs of Sarajevo to be Killed in Election Ploy
Stop the Killing of Strays in Sarajevo
Bosnia: Sarajevo set to become the next Bucharest
BOSNIA: kill and slaughter until the dog is no more…
Bosnia Killing Dogs – No Different to Romania!
ANTI KILL-LAW FIGHT – NOW WHAT?

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DONATIONS

Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there. Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

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Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

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This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.

Barney the Miracle Dog from Bosnia

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This is the story of Barney, the miracle dog – the beaten, battered and broken street dog from Bosnia who captured all our hearts. This is Barney’s miraculous story of how he cheated death more times than we could count. With his will to survive, bravery and infectious personality and love of humans, his story is one that will stay with you forever.

Please watch his amazing story on this video… if it doesn’t pull your heartstrings, then we sincerely believe nothing will! This story has a happy ending, and most importantly this story spreads LOVE! Barney has brought so many people together in a common cause, people who never knew each other before and who now will remain friends forever.

Barney’s story begins on the 20 October 2015

Animal Welfare Advocate and Rescuer, Edina Pasic from Sarajevo wrote:

This truly left me speechless. Totally broke me. We went to feed the dogs on the streets today. And we went to one of our usual spots, where we always go when we have food. We started to call on the dogs and then we saw a horrible sight. One of the dogs we have been feeding for a long time lay on the ground and looked like he was sleeping. When he heard us, he lifted his head and then the rest of his body. Then he stopped and just looked at us for a few minutes. I wondered what was wrong with him because he’s always the first to run up to us. Then the darling tried to come over to us. Jumping little by little on his four legs with the first right leg totally fractured. He couldn’t walk on it at all.

I walked over to the man who’s guarding the area where these dogs stay and asked him about what had happened to him. He told me that there are a lot of dogs wondering abound that factory. Most of them are very scared of people, but this one was friendly and cuddly. He told me … Some monster hit the big dog with his car. Then, instead of helping him, he kicked both him and another dog and beat them with a bat he had in his car. The guard I was talking to ran out after the monster when this happened, but it all happened way to fast and he wasn’t fast enough to stop it. The guard said that the dogs weren’t doing anything wrong. They weren’t running after the car.”

12109331_923094834424078_3257987257168806316_nAWABosnia asked Edina to rescue him. We would somehow find the money for treatment and care. She did. (And she also rescued the white dog, a female dog, also hurt by this terrible man). Both dogs were taken to the vet.

Edina named the big dog was named BARNEY.

22 October 2015, Edina wrote:

Unfortunately Barney’s injury is complicated. He has an old elbow fracture and now has a new fracture in the same area. No one is able to operate on this here in Sarajevo, so amputation has been suggested. I’ve sent the pictures to Zagreb and Slovenia and am currently waiting for a response. I really hope that someone can fix his leg.

Barney is a big dog. Look what they did to him. He’s just skin and bones. He doesn’t even have the strength to eat. He’s totally broken. He is so battered. Can’t walk, can’t run. Why have humans done this to him? Can somebody just tell me why?

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Barney was transported to Zagreb where a vet would operate and treat him. So many supporters donated to cover the costs.


11059239_925916750808553_9033677648548247736_nAs soon as the vet examined Barney, he said Barney had been shot at some point in the past. The bullet fragments had made a big mess of his leg. X-rays revealed there were still bullet fragments in Barney’s leg. He had a broken bone on the same leg and a broken toe on his front leg.

Edina wrote on the 28th: “The vet didn’t want to operate on him immediately because of his anaemia and depression. He’s doing a lot better today. He’s wagging his tail at anyone who comes close. I also have to thank the kind people in Zagreb who have promised to visit him every day while he’s there. He doesn’t lack love there, so I’m very happy. He’s won all their hearts. He doesn’t have to stay in his box like the other dogs at the clinic. Instead they let him walk around the whole area of the clinic freely. They don’t want him to be in the box, so he’s helping them work by observing them. Our brave Barney. He knows that we all love him. He’ll be brave tomorrow because of all of you. Be strong our boy.

14463018_10154502470111753_2090418062655701332_nAND THEN … THE BEST NEWS EVER:

31 October 2015, Edina wrote:

Our Barney was operated on late last night. The operation lasted for 5 hours and it was successful. Barney has woken up from the anaesthesia. I’m thrilled! I just called the clinic; he’s going well. He’s awake and has lifted his head. He’s getting painkillers and sedatives to relax him. Everything is going according to the plan. Our brave darling. They also told me that it was a difficult and complicated operation, “aggressive” as they called it and that much is now relying on his ability to heal. They also have to keep his wounds cold. He’s got a long and hard way to recovery, but I know and believe that our brave Barney will pull through like the hero he is. In time he will be able to use his leg again.”

AND THEN … THE WORST NEWS EVER, JUST A FEW DAYS LATER…

1 November 2015, Edina wrote:

screen-shot-2016-09-25-at-21-09-33TERRIBLE NEWS ABOUT BARNEY! This morning I got a call from the vet in Zagreb saying BARNEY HAS ESCAPED FROM THE CLINIC. This happened last night and I am only finding out this morning. They did not call me. I am driving there now. I cannot stay in Sarajevo. I have to be there. It is a six hour drive. I cannot believe this! He cannot go far on that leg. He MUST be found. Please please please send him your wishes to stay near the clinic and not to hide. Please everyone! Barney needs your help now MORE THAN EVER. How did the clinic let this happen? A lot of people are there looking for him. This cannot happen to him, not to Barney

Two days later, Edina wrote:

14449760_10154502467636753_3807560220038368534_nWith a heavy heart, I have to inform you that we still haven’t found Barney. We will not stop looking, but this is really hard on me. We even contacted people with search dogs today and the dog had a trace, but lost it. I’m really desperate. We’ve also been hanging up posters around the city. We will be looking all night tonight and the whole day tomorrow until we find him. … My only priority now is that we find him. I’m very worried because he can get gangrene infection or sepsis. And he’s also hungry. And his painkillers will also wear off soon and he will be in a lot of pain. Please pray that we find him. Thanks to everyone who has helped so far with sharing his post and looking for him and to all of you who will help in the days to come. Please Barney, come back to me. Please don’t do this to me.

On 5th November, with Barney having been operated on barely a week ago, Edina wrote:

Unfortunately, we still haven’t found Barney. Where are you my darling? All of the media, newspapers, internet based newspapers have heard his story and shared it. I really wish to thank them for doing so. We’ve visited all the vet stations and put up posters. Today, along with some friends, we put up posters on the bus stations and tram stations. We’ve left posters in the trams, we have given them to taxi drivers. We’ve even made some small ones that we left on the cars parked outside. We will not stop looking for him. My darling Barney, I feel I will find you so just hold on.”

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A few days later Edina wrote:

My darling Barney…  We’re still looking for my darling Barney… I feel that he’s alive so I can’t give up on him… Last night a boy told us that he had seen Barney on his way home from school, on the bus station Dubica… We searched the whole area along with our friends and stayed there the whole night in our car… We didn’t leave the place for one minute, but unfortunately we didn’t have any luck this time either… I repeat that I still feel that he’s alive… And thanks to everyone who is helping with the positive messages on not to give up hope… It gets worse as the days go by… Just imagine yourself in a different country, in a different city, trying to find your pet or your child… It’s the same thing to me… And you get calls from people claiming to have seen him… Every time your heart stops, you start to cry and run to the place where he was seen… I can`t explain how I, and all the others here looking, feel… Sometimes I feel like I’m losing my mind..

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Edina and Caki searched and searched all over Zagreb. Svend, a volunteer helper for DogLost (a group in the UK helping reunite lost dogs with their owners) had been following the story and gave support and encouragement and advice, but after 20 days of searching Edina had to return to Sarajevo to take care of her small son and to check on her other rescues who were in pension.

12208385_930257050374523_7294690200657775164_nCaki stayed on, he couldn’t give up…. He wouldn’t give up… and nor would Svend, who enlisted the help of other DogLost volunteers with vast experience of catching lost dogs… After 33 days of searching for nearly every hour in the day, Caki also had to go back to Sarajevo but he and Edina kept returning to Zagreb (it’s a seven hour drive), and a wonderful local team of rescuers from Zagreb gathered to continue looking for Barney. The team included the wonderful Mirchi, Daria, and Marina – supported by their long-suffering partners.

Thousands of people followed Barney’s story on Facebook, and there were articles about him in the Croatian newspapers… (and, sadly, some people even thought his escape from the veterinary surgery was fabricated to get donations…in spite of there being CCVT video footage from the surgery showing how in fact it happened and how he escaped the clinic!)

After endless and fruitless “chasing” and “searching”, and despite numerous sightings during November and December and the extensive efforts of numerous helpers, Barney proved impossible to even get close to.

14468432_10154502469146753_7465165208282456913_oThen, in February 2016, after a long period with no sightings, the team had a lucky break with a sighting of Barney several kilometers south of the Sava river in a semi-rural area near the airport.

The team (which was constantly growing in numbers) had to establish a feeding station that Barney visited regularly, and then to make and install a suitable trap. The trap and feeding station needed twice daily visits and, once “set”, continuous observation throughout every night!

By using a trail camera sent from the UK by Svend, the team were able to confirm Barney was visiting their feeding station. And with some coaching they were able to get a suitable trap made (not something they could buy or borrow in Croatia!), and over a period of one month they gradually enticed Barney to go into the trap, before setting it. This was not a process familiar to anyone in Zagreb, but they followed detailed advice via a Facebook chat (more than 500 messages!)

AND THEN … the news we had all been waiting to hear:

BARNEY is FOUND and is SAFE….! FOUR MONTHS AFTER HE ESCAPED!

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6 March 2016, Edina wrote:

As many of you will remember, Barney has been missing in Zagreb, with a broken leg, since 1 November of last year. On 4 March, he was finally back in safe hands! Finally, after more than 4 months out on his own, all our efforts have proved worthwhile. Barney has been caught.

Barney has had a preliminary vet check today (lots of ticks to be removed, and some antibiotics for an infection), and will go back on Monday for x-rays of his leg. Meanwhile, tonight he is “enjoying” a bath and manicure!

A HUGE “WELL DONE” and thank you to Svend, Mirchi, Daria, Marina, and the many other who helped at various stages, including Olja, Suzana, Rina, Drazen and others. A full list of all the people involved is at the end of this article, who all deserve to be thanked.

14495318_10154502473146753_8864190574901056506_nBut of course Barney’s story did not end there…

7 March 2016: “Today Barney went for x-rays at the vet clinic “Zarko Cirica”. Everyone at the clinic recognized him and gave him lots of hugs and kisses. They were all pleasantly surprised because Barney didn’t have sepsis, despite living on his own for four months. He’s had urine, blood and faeces samples, and everything looks good – even the blood test, despite having over 70 ticks removed. On Wednesday he’s due to have a bone biopsy of his leg, which hasn’t healed as it should have, of course. He also has an infection in the joint, although the vet said Barney is a special phenomenon for going this long without antibiotics.

In addition to the problems on one leg, he has an in-growing claw on one of his paws, and a tooth that is in such a bad condition that it has to be pulled: all of this will be done on Wednesday, too. Once his leg has been sorted out, he will need physio and hydro-therapy, to re-learn to use his leg. His reflexes are great so the vet thinks that the problem is all in Barney’s head because he has become used to doing everything on three legs!

14433214_10154502471921753_2670416874810512757_nBarney has a very strong-smelling dark urine. Because of a large number of ticks (70) we had spotted on his body it is assumed he may suffer from babesiosis.

We had his blood work done again and everything was fine but the vet didn’t want to risk it and put him under anaesthetic before making sure he was ready for that. (As he said – his paw and leg will not run away). He is a well-known vet and he doesn’t want to rush it. Barney has lots of friends in the clinic!

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Barney had a huge ear wound that was deepened by his permanent scratching. The vets thought it was mange but after they had done the swab it was clear he didn’t have it.

14390884_10154502472191753_6054728936666634827_n“Barney is a lucky guy because he has Hari and Mirchi as his temporary foster family who are giving him love and support and they will take care of him as far as he will need hydrotherapy and of course he will be able to use his leg again. Mirchi made a sponge sock to stop him scratching it. Our friends from Zagreb bought him a GPS which is built into his collar so as to be able to follow him at every turn via smart phone App (ALL OVER THE WORLD). THEY ARE AMAZING!

13 March 2016: “Barney has now been to the vets three times in the last week. The surgery planned for Wednesday was delayed until Friday, to allow for further blood tests. He has now had bone samples taken, and test results are expected next week. He’s also had a couple of decayed teeth removed, which should make him feel a bit better and while he was under general anaesthetic, he was also neutered. What appeared to be an “in-grown” claw on his front right paw turned out to be a historical fractured toe: the vet hasn’t done anything with this at the moment, as he wouldn’t be able to use that leg after surgery.

Barney is now wearing his GPS collar! Mirchi and Marina kindly paid for the collar, but we have bought a 1 year subscription (it uses a mobile phone SIM card and App).”

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Barney continued to receive veterinary treatment, because although his leg healed well he wasn’t using it at all, and so he was prescribed a course of hydrotherapy sessions to help him regain use of his leg
.

14435346_10154502472376753_6307699552017792148_oNone of this could have happened without the generous support of Edina and Caki’s followers, of course. Barney had amassed SO many followers and fans!

2 May 2016, Edina wrote: “Barney is doing OK and is now up to 42kg bodyweight, but the infection in his bone has caused a screw to come loose, so he has had an operation to take it out.

When they removed the loose screw, Barney’s leg was not looking good. They took a sample of that tissue and found out that his bone had started to dissolve because it was constantly infected by all screws and pieces of bullet in his elbow.

screen-shot-2016-09-25-at-21-13-50So they put him on very strong antibiotics for almost 2 months and decided to take all the screws out as well as bullet pieces.”

Barney had long recovery (3 months) after that surgery, but he finally started using that leg again – more and more every day. “He is using it more than ever these days and he is extremely fast now!

21 September 2016, eleven months after his initial rescue and seven months after he was found after escaping the vet practise, BARNEY HAS A FOREVER HOME IN CANADA WAITING FOR HIM! With an incredible family who fell in love with Barney from the start.

But once again we need your help to get him there. And this is why …
The most beautiful outcome of Barney’s story is that most of the people involved in his story, did not know each other. So, thank you Barney for bringing people together and creating friendships that will last forever as a result of their love for you. You are a special boy, Barney. It is this reason why we feel so passionate about getting him to his forever home in Canada, he crosses continents with his love, with the people who love him.

What started as a Mission Impossible and concluded with an EPIC Mission Accomplished. We would like to thank all the people involved in Barney’s story and we are sure that Barney would like to thank them also. These people volunteered their time, money, resources, equipment, connections, networks and kept hope alive.

These people volunteered their time, money, resources, equipment, connections, networks and gave us hope. If we have missed anyone, please know that you are acknowledged.

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But most of, we want to thank all the people, from all over the world, who followed and supported Barney’s story and donated funds and who forged new friendships through Barney’s story… the list is too long to write here but includes…

Svend, Edina, Caki, Marina, Olja, Mladen, Mirchi, Daria, Marko, Hari, Zrinka, Miho, Draze, Brankica, Sasa, Maja, Marijana, Ana, Suzana, Rina, Hrvoje, Tanja, Aida, Josip. Samra., Mirjana. Petra, Maja, Dubravka and Duda.

And thank you Snezana Tigerman and family who have been waiting all this time to give Barney a forever home in Canada!

But most of, we want to thank all the people, from all over the world, who followed and supported Barney’s story and who forged new friendships through Barney’s story. His story will continue with his own Facebook Page very soon.

If you have learned anything from Barney or the people involved in Barney’s life from watching his video story, then PLEASE help us raise the funds for Barney’s travel costs so that Barney can finally be in his forever home in Canada. The YouCaring fundraiser is here. UPDATE! 29 SEPTEMBER:All funds were raised thanks to incredible support and Barney is now in CANADA! We’ll make a post soon!!

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THANK YOU ALL FOR LOVING AND SUPPORTING BARNEY.

A MIRACLE DOG.

A DOG LIKE NO OTHER.

BECAUSE HE SHOWED US THAT IF YOU BELIEVE IN SOMETHING, MIRACLES WILL HAPPEN.

 

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DONATIONS

Funds are needed to help individual rescues, for spay-neuter projects, for education also to continue advocacy work in Bosnia, uncovering the truth about what is happening there. Donations are managed by AWABosnia, an independent group of animal advocates. On their website, Animal Welfare Advocates for Bosnia, you can set up a monthly donation via PayPal, or if you want to make a one-off donation, please go to your PayPal account (or set one up, it’s very easy) and send the money to: donations@awabosnia.org. Click on the image below to be taken to PayPal’s home page.

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Or if you want to use the customised PayPal form, click the link below. However, a transaction fee and a percentage (2- 5.4%) will be deducted by PayPal for any contribution made.

If you want your contribution to go to a specific cause, please make a note in the PayPal comment box. If you wish to contribute via bank transfer or have other difficulties or questions, please go here.

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This site is dedicated to Vučko. Read his story and don’t let him have suffered and died in vain. Please help the stray dogs and cats in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The situation there is utterly dire, Vučko is but one amongst many horrifically abused animals. Even just one dollar or one euro will help make a difference.