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What you should know!  ….. if a dog is handed to Gozo SPCA  by the owner, then we can legally rehome it immediately. If a dog is picked up by Gozo SPCA , or given to us ‘owner unknown’, then irrespective of whether the dog is chipped or not, we have to care for it on behalf of the owner for 7 days.   After 7 days we take legal ownership of the dog. What we are allowed to do within the 7 days is to foster the dog;  which is what we have done in many cases and will continue to do so.  If the owner appears before the 7 days, they can reclaim the dog.  This interpretation of the law is used by other sanctuaries and deemed acceptable by the Animal Welfare Department.

What to do if you find a dog  – You can call animal welfare on 1717 and they will come and check for a chip- this is normally the best thing to do first, but only in Malta, as there is no animal welfare department in Gozo. If you wish to take the dog to a sanctuary, you need to call them first to check if they have space. The law gives you several options: 1. return to owner if known 2. deliver dog to the nearest police station and they cannot refuse to take the dog 3. deliver dog to a registered sanctuary, but they are under no legal obligation to take the dog 4. if you wish to keep the dog, take it to the nearest police station to make a report and to check for a chip. After 7 days you can claim ownership …

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