MAY 14 2012 23:13h
The association of animal lovers called Prijatelji zivotinja sent formal letters to city administration bodies of Croatian towns. They ask for the permission to enter the public transport with their pets, which is in accordance with civilized European practice. The text of the document is:
Our association has been trying to change the Decision about city transport in the city of Zagreb for years. We sent the first official demand in 2006. The document was sent to the City Office for Physical Planning, Construction of the City, Utility Services and Transport. There was no reply.
Prijatelji zivotinja called the city public transport company and found out that there is a will to solve this problem and to negotiate about this problem in the future. The members of the association are pretty sure that other public transport firms in other Croatian cities are also interested in solutions of such a problem. It is not acceptable that entering the public transport with a dog is not allowed if you take into account that there are 40 thousand dogs in Zagreb only. It has been obvious that the rights and needs of several hundred thousand Croatian citizens and their pets have been ignored.
It is not clear how the owners should go to the vet if they don’t have their own car or money to take a taxi. Why couldn’t they use the public transport if they want to or if they need to? They pay the taxes for living in the city as any other citizens.
The current regulation is such that entering the public transport is only allowed for blind people who have a trained dog and under the condition that the dog has a muzzle. The other owners are allowed to enter the public transport only on Saturday and Sunday, on the day before a public holiday and on the public holiday but only in night hours (from 8 pm to 6 am). The dog has to have a short leash and a muzzle and it should be registered in National Kennel Club. Such limits practically not possible, not only because of time but also because of National Kennel Club membership rule. According to the information from other cities, it seems that in other cities there are no city regulations without limits as well.
The members of the association think that it is necessary to change the current rules and bring the new regulations which will enable the dog owners to enter the public transport. They point out that in other European cities the pet owners have the right to enter almost all public areas including restaurants and the means of public transportation. The problem of trams and buses should be solved here in Croatia as a starting point. The association suggests the adding to the articles:
1. Passengers can take pets into the public transport if the animals are in transport boxes.
2. Passengers have the right to take dogs into the means of public transport. The exceptions are dangerous breeds of dogs. The leash should be short.
3. The first article should regulate the transport of all pets (dogs, cats, rabbits) that can be put into transport boxes. This would ensure the security of other passengers. The second article would regulate the transport of dogs taking into account that they should have the short leash and a muzzle. The dangerous breeds wouldn’t be allowed to enter the public transport. The rule about the timing of transport is not necessary because the owners are not going to take dogs inside the vehicles during the rush hours for their own sake. In fact, it is difficult to state the time of the rush hour and the lines where it happens because the situation changes according to the weather and the season.
Moreover, the membership card of the Kennel Club makes no sense as well, because it is not correct to impose the membership as the condition to use the public transport. There are a very few people who are the members of the Kennel Club. If the cities brought such regulations, they would show the respect for all their citizens. They would also make one step forward in treating animals and animal lovers according to European practice.