[Japan Spotlight] Request to the Minister of the Environment ‧ Enforcing the revised Animal Protection Law

  • Amendment to the enforcement of the Animal Protection Law – June 1, 2020

Act on Welfare and Management of Animals (commonly known as Animal Protection Law) is reviewed every five years. Last year’s amendment stipulated that microchips should be compulsory and that the sale of pets younger than 8 weeks, or 56 days, should be prohibited.

Animal protection groups are already lobbying for the next review, which is scheduled for 2025. World Dog Alliance will keep reporting on the legislation progress on banning dog and cat meat, as well as the International Agreement to Prohibit the Eating of Dogs and Cats, currently being promoted in the United States and Britain.

  • Photograph of the Minister of the Environment (from the Ministry of the Environment website)>
  • Summary: New Regulations and Standards on Pet Shops – August 31, 2020

The Ministry of the Environment’s “Study Group on Proper Animal Breeding Management Methods” was held seven times over the past two years. Recently, suggestions proposed by animal welfare organizations were taken and summarized at study meetings.

Animal protection organizations have proposed that the reproductive physiological age for each animal should be under 7 years old for females. Great progress has been made to reduce the reproductive pressure on animals. 

The “Cross-Party Parliamentary Alliance for Animal Protection Aiming for Zero Killing of Dogs and Cats” called for compulsory transparency for the number of breeding animals, the number of caesarean sections, and the size of the breeding facility.

  • Request to the Minister of the Environment (original photo)>

New Prime Minister – September 16, 2020

At the plenary session of the House of Representatives and the House of Councilors, Yoshihide Suga was nominated as the 99th Prime Minister of Japan.

On the same day, Prime Minister Suga launched a “working cabinet” and Minister Shinjiro Koizumi remained at the top of the Ministry of the Environment, which is responsible for animal protection policies in Japan.

At present, the biggest concern is the dissolution of the House of Representatives and the general election. When the Kan Cabinet was inaugurated, many people were wary of the early dissolution of the House of Representatives, but Prime Minister Suga has pledged not to dissolve the House of Representatives in order to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic, along with other domestic affairs.

The term of office of the House of Representatives ends on October 21, 2021. Upcoming important events include parliament dissolution in November 2021 and general election in January 2022. The new Parliament will then decide the budget and arrangements for the Tokyo Olympics and Prarlympics.

  • Yoshihide Suga during his time as Chief Cabinet Secretary (original photo)