February 16, 2016
President of Honduras Enacts Animal Welfare Law
HSI Latin America applauds action to protect all animals
In a historic move, the president of Honduras has signed into law the Animal Welfare and Protection Law in Tegucigalpa. Honduras is now one of the first countries in Latin America to penalize animal cruelty with jail time.
The law will be enacted six months after publication in the official newspaper “La Gaceta.” It establishes regulations for the protection of all animals, including wildlife, companion and farm animals.
“We congratulate the Honduras government and local animal welfare organizations on the collaboration that led to passage of this law,” said Cynthia Dent, executive director of HSI Latin America. “We are committed to extending our hand to the government and local organizations in helping implement this law.”
The law prohibits dog fighting and includes anti-cruelty articles punishing intentional harm of animals with prison time (three to five years). The law includes detailed articles on the care of companion animals, exotic animals, wildlife and farm animals.
“This is an important step for Honduras since we now know we won’t stand by idly and see animal cruelty cases happen. Honduras now has the tools to start preventing violence against animals,” said Karla Duarte, president of the Honduran Association for the Protection of Animals and the Environment.
This legislation follows public outcry after someone set a dog on fire. The approval of this law sets an important precedent in Honduras, where animal cruelty is increasing in frequency and social media has amplified awareness of cruelty cases.