Sources close to the Euro Weekly News working in the dog rescue sector are claiming that a dog tax is to be brought in nationally across Spain.
The tax is is reportedly going to be up to 200 euros each year for each dog owned and registered but at this stage is only an estimation and not clarified officially.
Tired of bankrolling the costs of cleaning up dog excrement from its streets, Spain’s north western city of Zamora, has already imposed a tax on dog owners to be levied from next year.
The city of Zamora has more dogs registered than children.
Diego Bernardo, Zamora’s tax councillor was recently quoted as saying “Dog owners should contribute to a certain extent to the cities expenses”
The levy imposed in Zamora will though start at nine euros a year for each dog as the levy is rolled out but expected to increase according to sources which is expected to raise between 50,000 euros and 90,000 euros annually from the tax, which will be used to create more dog parks and pay for daily cleaning of canine waste.
Bernardo further added “The tax has caused strong public reaction. Some don’t agree at all, others just resigned themselves to the fact and some accept it, but not all reactions have been negative,” he said.
Spain has a big issue with dogs, firstly the amount of dog owners who don’t clean up after their animals and secondly the amount of strays and abandoned dogs ending up in rescue centres operated by charities.
The question has to be though will this tax if it comes into force see more dogs in Spain discarded to avoid the tax? Surely the higher the tax the bigger the issue?
We posed this question to our source at the local rescue centre in Murcia.
She said ” We travel to the dog pound each week to select around 10-15 dogs that we feel we can re home, we ensure that each dog has been inspected by a vet, all jabs are completed and the dog is spade or castrated and issued with a passport.
Applicants for the dogs have to be vetted so we arrange home inspection wherever in Spain.
This obviously costs money and in return we ask for the costs to be covered in the region of 250 euros, you would be amazed how many applicants baulk at the cost and are never to be heard from again.
My fear is that if a dog tax is applied and in consideration of the re homing fee far less dogs will ever get out the dog pound and would have to destroyed, whilst I would also expect the dog pound to fill up rapidly as irresponsible owners discard their dogs to avoid the tax.”
Naturally here in Spain there are responsible dog owners who we shouldn’t forget so we left the Euro Weekly News offices to see how they felt about any pending taxes.
First up was Maria McGee walking her young Dashound Bertie” how much ? that’s a bit steep isn’t it? if I have to pay it of course I will as my dog is my life but I think its a bit of a liberty”
Second dog walker approached was burly Antonio walking his toy Poodle Poppa” I think it’s a good idea as long as it’s not too expensive and a fair tax, more dog walk areas will be great as we can have more scenery changes on our walks each day”
Mary Gregory wanted to know where she would stand for her dog Paddy as she explained ” we drive him over with us for a few months at a time, so will visiting dogs have to pay?”
The next gentleman Paul sporting a Blackpool football shirt was resting with his Alsatian in a nearby cafe said ” ludicrous, just another reason to tax us, I’d rather other dog owners concentrated on picking up their dog crap, it’s beyond a joke around here and if this tax comes in means we are paying for theirs to be cleaned up because they are too damn bloody lazy!”
Finally Janice Wass strolling with her Irish Setter Dana said ” as long as its not too high I do not mind really as long as we see the benefits”
The possible pending dog tax certainly is causing a stir and isn’t going to be a straight walk in park by the looks if it’s levied.
What do Euro Weekly Readers think fair or not fair?