In its contributions presented on April 4 to the Ministry of Culture and Sports, on the occasion of the preliminary public consultation on the draft law on animal doping, INTERcids, Legal Operators for Animals, stressed that this regulation is very timely and necessary, given the seriousness of this problem and the current moment of normative development for the protection of animals, which sports legislation cannot ignore.
This bill derives from a mandate contained in Organic Law 11/2021, of December 28, on the fight against doping in sport, to which INTERcids submitted contributions in 2020, so said Organic Law incorporated an express provision on the prohibition of animal doping in sport.
THE PROTECTION OF ANIMALS AS A CENTRAL AXIS
“It is necessary that the future law on animal doping be considered taking as a starting point the protection of the interest and well-being of animals which may participate in sporting activities, so that said well-being must be the main condition for said participation to be able to participate. afford”. INTERcids recalled that the doping of animals, both in competitions and outside them, is a form of mistreatment which, moreover, violates all the principles of sports ethics, in particular that relating to “non- violence” in the practice of sport. .
The supply of substances to animals is sanctioned by administrative regulations. In addition, recalls INTERcids, it is a behavior whose seriousness can lead to deserve criminal reproaches in certain cases. Supplying substances to animals participating in sporting events, resulting in serious health problems or even death, may constitute the crime of animal abuse defined in article 337 of the Penal Code (which may also be committed to the degree of attempt), also considering as an aggravating circumstance the fact of using means specifically dangerous to the life of the animal, such as doping substances.
MANDATORY REQUIREMENTS FOR ALL DISCIPLINES
As INTERcids has already indicated in its observations on the sports bill in July 2021, given the diversity of sports practices in which animals are involved, with their respective federations under the coordination and supervision of the Board of Governors sports, it is very important that there is a general framework which lays down the minimum conditions to be met in all cases to guarantee the protection of animals.
On the other hand, the entity recalls that in addition to the registered state federations, the draft law on animal doping cannot ignore the existence of other sports modalities, in which animals are also used and which depend on federations non-state, such as dredging of stones with oxen, horses or other bovids or equines and dredging. “The doping of these animals is also a problem of great importance which as such must be taken into account in this regulatory project”, they underline.
DIRECT CONTROL BY INDEPENDENT VETERINARIANS
The association welcomes the intention to regulate by this rule the presence and intervention of veterinary personnel in the development of anti-doping control actions during sporting events in which animals participate. In addition to this, the entity proposed that the law expressly provide for the possibility of removal and custody of the animals involved in the event of allegedly infringing behavior, as well as the accessory sanction of cessation of animal-related activities, with disqualification for the exercise of the same, and for the possession of animals, by the sanctioned person.