Judge must determine whether NVWA is right to take dogs from Ukraine: ‘I want equal rights for war animals’

The Dutch Food and Consumer Safety Authority (NVWA) is being brought to court by the dog’s owner, Elena. Tomorrow you will look at whether nine war dogs from Ukraine have been properly rescued.

The NVWA confiscated pets to prevent a new outbreak of rabies. But the owners say they followed the rules for importing pets from abroad.

happy dog

Jia Huiscus sits with her hand in her hair. She has no idea how a Rottweiler puppy miss is doing. She adopted the animal at the end of March after a hobby breeder rescued it from the war in Ukraine.

In the four weeks he spent with the Huiskes family, he transformed from a shocked puppy into a happy dog.


But suddenly the NVWA was close to declaring that the dog had to be quarantined due to strict rules to prevent an outbreak of rabies in the Netherlands.

Mays is captured by the NVWA and placed in a secret and unknown location. “I thought what this is. I am an honest citizen. I have never done anything that does not stand the light of day. I want out of the goodness of my heart to save a dog from hell and then you get this and I don’t understand why.”

He begged me to save the puppies

The puppy that Jia got was taken by hobby breeder Elena Kruglack. She comes from Ukraine and when the war broke out she wanted to mean something not only to her citizens but also to the animals.

I heard a distress call from a Rottweiler breeder near Kyiv. “He was drafted into the army. He asked me, and he begged me to help his dogs. I gave birth to the puppies just before the war. He wasn’t able to take care of them.”

agricultural quarantine

Elena did not hesitate for a moment, got into the car and took the puppies and two adult dogs. However, she did call the vet before leaving to ask him what rules she must comply with. She also searched the NVWA website: “It wasn’t obvious. I made a hard copy of all the information on their site. I acted on that information.”

According to Elena, the puppies were still too young to be vaccinated against rabies when she left. So all the puppies were vaccinated when they returned home and were isolated for a month. Then I found new homes for all the puppies.

3000 euros per dog

But NVWA also showed up at Elena’s home at the end of April to pick up the two adult dogs and one of her self-adopted puppies. They had to be quarantined for at least 3 months and the costs of the reception were on Elena herself.

It can go up to 3000 euros per dog. You find this incomprehensible: “It was a very bad situation. They just came without warning. They didn’t ring the bell, they just walked into the house.”


Different rules apply to animals that come to Holland because of the war in Ukraine. The European Union has decided to be flexible with the rules for pets who escape with their owners.

It is recommended that pets in the Netherlands be vaccinated against rabies as soon as possible. The animal must then be quarantined at home for a month. This is followed by a blood test to determine if the vaccination is working and the animal is allowed to roam freely again.

Watch also

6 months

But as soon as a dog or cat came from Ukraine without an owner and with an institution, for example, regular quarantine rules apply. This means, among other things, that the animals must be cut up and vaccinated, they must have a health certificate and a European animal passport.

If all of these conditions are not met, the NVWA places them in official quarantine. It can last up to 6 months. Elena thinks it is “unfair”. “I want equal rights for war animals.”

need to

“We are doing all of this out of necessity,” NVWA wrote in a written response. “This is in the interest of Dutch public health and refugees from Ukraine, who came here with their pet.”

“With this we are taking well-calculated health risks from European conventions and from a social point of view. Most (animal assistance) organizations are aware of and understand this.”


Rabies or rabies

Rabies is a deadly contagious disease that affects dogs and cats, among other diseases. The virus is present in saliva and spreads in the body after being bitten or scratched through nerves, and it is also life-threatening. When the virus reaches the brain, the behavior changes. The disease also owes its name to it; rabies. Rabies is usually fatal without timely treatment.

Rabies does not occur in the Netherlands, but it still occurs in Eastern Europe. According to research by Utrecht University, most cases of rabies are found in Europe in Ukraine. Infection occurs throughout the country. The number of cases in cats is higher than in dogs. According to Utrecht University, “Despite mandatory rabies vaccination in Ukraine, the vaccination rate for dogs in cities is estimated to be less than 50 percent and even lower for dogs from more rural areas.”

two thousand animals

According to NVWA estimates, about 2,000 pets came with refugees from Ukraine. Five pets were officially quarantined by the NVWA because home quarantine was not an option for these refugees. 44 dogs and cats were collected from institutions and dealers, which were taken from the war zone without their owner.

The NVWA writes: “They are cared for in institutions comparable to an animal care home. They receive the best care and attention from experienced caregivers. When necessary, socialization is given as much form as possible within the quarantine requirements.”

Watch also

unfair treatment

Karen Sweeters of Animal Today believes the rules have not been properly communicated by NVWA. You find it sad that philanthropists who took dogs from Ukraine out of goodness from their hearts now face shelter costs that can run into tens of thousands of euros.

Plus, according to Sweeter, dogs also languish in kennels. She calls it “owner bullying” at the expense of the animals.

stupid info

“We don’t have to rescue all the dogs from Ukraine, that’s not what we’re there for, but then you have to put the right information on the site,” Soeters says.

“They never do that. I get this kind of stupid information all the time. It has to be answered in a good way.” She applauds Elena Kruglack’s lawsuit against NVWA.

Just look at those big brown eyes.

It will take another two months before Jia gets her dog Miss. “I can’t explain to you what that looks like. I don’t sleep at night. I just see those big brown eyes.” She realizes that some people think, “He’s just a dog you’ll be back with in 3 months.”

“It’s allowed,” says Jia. “But if you’re a true dog lover, you know those months are crucial to parenting.” Anyway, she’s still waiting for the puppy: “It’s not Alice that gave up. But we’re going to raise him and give him everything he’s missed.”

Watch also

Leave a Comment