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Germany – Animal Welfare and Cultural Issues

Germany is a country that has a strong animal welfare ethic and has enacted laws to protect animals from cruelty and neglect. This article will discuss the prevailing attitude to animals and pets in Germany, the laws regarding pet ownership, major animal charities in Germany, pet supply stores, and cultural taboos and sensitivities associated with different types of animals.

Prevailing Attitude to Animals and Pets in Germany

The Germans are known for their love of animals, and pets are very popular in the country. According to a survey conducted in 2020, approximately 34% of households in Germany have at least one pet, with cats being the most popular followed by dogs. Germans consider their pets to be a part of their family and treat them as such. They are well-cared for and receive love and attention from their owners.

Pet Ownership in Germany

Germany has strict laws regarding pet ownership to ensure the welfare of animals. Some of the laws include:

  • All dogs must be registered with the authorities and must have a microchip implanted for identification purposes.
  • Dogs must be kept on a leash in public spaces and muzzled if they are deemed to be potentially dangerous.
  • Cats are allowed to roam freely, but owners are responsible for ensuring that their cats do not cause any damage or harm to others.
  • It is illegal to abandon a pet, and owners who do so can face fines and imprisonment.

Major Animal Charities in Germany

Germany has several animal charities that work to protect animals and promote animal welfare. Some of the major animal charities in Germany are:

Deutscher Tierschutzbund

The Deutscher Tierschutzbund is the largest animal welfare organization in Germany, with over 740 member organizations. It works to promote animal welfare and protect animals from cruelty and neglect. The organization operates animal shelters, provides veterinary care, and advocates for animal rights.

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PETA Deutschland

PETA Deutschland is the German branch of the international animal rights organization PETA. The organization works to promote animal rights, end animal testing, and raise awareness of the suffering of animals in the food industry.


Tierheimhelden is an online platform that connects animal shelters with volunteers and potential adopters. The platform allows users to search for animals that are available for adoption and provides information about local animal shelters.

Pet Supply Stores in Germany

Germany has several pet supply stores where pet owners can purchase food, toys, and other supplies for their pets. Some of the most popular pet supply stores in Germany are:


Fressnapf is a chain of pet supply stores that operates in Germany and several other countries. The stores offer a wide range of pet food, toys, and accessories for dogs, cats, birds, and other pets. Fressnapf also operates an online store that delivers throughout Germany.


Zooplus is an online retailer that sells pet food, toys, and accessories. The company operates throughout Europe and offers a wide range of products for dogs, cats, birds, and other pets. Zooplus also offers free delivery on orders over a certain amount.

Cultural Taboos and Sensitivities Associated with Different Types of Animals in Germany

In general, Germans are quite fond of animals and pets. Dogs are the most popular pet in Germany, with around 9 million dogs living in households across the country. Cats are also a popular pet, with around 14% of households owning at least one cat.

There are no specific cultural taboos or sensitivities associated with different types of animals in Germany. However, there is a growing awareness of animal welfare issues, and many Germans are concerned about the treatment of animals in agriculture and other industries.

One issue that has received attention in recent years is the use of animals in circuses and other entertainment industries. Many Germans are opposed to the use of animals in such settings and support efforts to ban these practices.

Another issue that has received attention is the use of animals in scientific research. Many Germans are opposed to the use of animals in such research and support efforts to find alternative methods.

In general, Germans value the welfare and well-being of animals and are committed to protecting them from harm. There are many animal welfare organizations and charities in Germany, which work to promote animal rights and welfare.