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Parliamentary question - E-011063/2012(ASW)Parliamentary question

Answer given by Mr Füle on behalf of the Commission

The EU legislation on animal welfare covers currently a large field, from animal welfare in farms, zoos and laboratory-testing of animals to movement and transport of pets. The welfare of (stray) dogs and cats does not fall under the EU's competence but within the remit of Member States' administrations.

The Commission has actively supported the work performed by the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) to develop guidelines for the control of stray dog populations, recognising the importance of controlling them without causing unnecessary animal suffering while minimising public health and safety risks. However, it is up to Bosnia and Herzegovina, as full member of the OIE, to consider how it might most appropriately use these international guidelines in its national context.

The alignment of national welfare legislation with EC law is a prerequisite for EU membership, with the objective of full application of EU legislation upon the country's accession to the EU. In the case of Bosnia and Herzegovina, although there is legislation in place (Law on Animal Welfare), this is not fully implemented.

The Commission monitors regularly the enforcement of EU legislation on animal welfare through inspection services, spot audits and technical trainings. Technical assistance is available and offered to candidate countries both for the transposition and the implementation of EU legislation. However, for the time being no particular investigation into state shelters of Bosnia and Herzegovina is planned to take place.

OJ C 339 E, 20/11/2013