As a responsible pet owner you must assure five basic freedoms recognized by the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE: “freedom from hunger and thirst», “freedom from discomfort», «disease prevention», “healthcare and veterinary treatment for animal welfare” and «it must be registered with the Honorary Animal Welfare Committee».

The Executive Branch passed the Animal life and welfare Protection Act, with 196 articles covering from «misconduct for abuse or neglect», to guidelines for conducting public performances.

The right to own an animal involves the «obligation to properly care for it and provide a level of comfort and protection that is consistent with social responsibility”. A responsible animal owner must ensure the animal has five basic freedoms recognized by the OIE:  «freedom from hunger and thirst, with a diet to maintain full health and an appropriate environment for living. Prevention of diseases which may be transmitted to humans or other animals, healthcare and other requirements for their welfare. In addition, the animal must be registered with the Honorary Animal Welfare Committee».

Overall, the Act establishes that every animal owner shall be «fully responsible» for any bite, injury or damage that the animal may cause to people, animals or property of others, except in the event that it occurs within the property in which the animal lives and the victim enters without permission.

Moreover, every pet that is found astray and without identification on the street is susceptible of being captured and sterilized and the owner or owners will not be entitled to claim.

With regard to animal abuse and neglect, any action that is not the result of a self-defense situation, of the defense of others or another animal is considered as unjustified. Abandonment is the case in which the animal is left unattended and without monitoring its stay in farms or land plots of their property or which have been leased for over 72 hours.

Act 18,471, which took two years of work of the Honorary Animal Welfare Committee, under the Ministry of Education and Culture (MEC), also regulates the animal species permitted as pets, which are considered private property subject to special regulation.


As for animals used to draw vehicles by scavengers, it is stated “that while the social reality of the country does not allow for the definite eradication of the use of horses for waste vehicle drawing and dragging activities in urban areas, the owners of said vehicles shall comply with the additional requirements».

It sets forth that «training of the animal in the skills required to carry out the task imposed, prior to being used, should be provided, the horse should not be used in summer with temperatures that exceed 32 degrees to avoid dehydration problems, and in temperatures above 25 degrees its head must be protected from the sun to avoid heatstroke possibilities».

The animal should be kept properly shod, no implements to urge the animal other than the reins must be used and loads that notoriously exceed the animal’s strength shall not be transported.