「人とペットの共生を考える国際シンポジウム 2002」
"The International Symposium for the Symbiotic Relationship
Between Human and Animals 2002"


   I think that the greater awareness of the general public toward animals contributed as a major force to the revision of the law for animal protection and control for the first time in 26 years, in December 1999. At the same time, I think that signs of change are starting to appear in the animal policies of local governments. Ever since the antirabies law was enacted in 1950, this law has always formed the core of the way administrative agencies treated animals. Now that things have come to this pass, I wish that they make a complete about-face from capture and slaughter to protection and guidance. I wish that they adhere to the concept expressed in the revised law that animals have life and make efforts to educate and guide animal owners as well as the general public for the realization of symbiotic relationships between human and animals. For this, however, administrative agencies themselves need to firmly grasp and show to the public what a comfortable life for animals means, and change their facilities from a mere place to keep animals until they are slaughtered, to a place that provides true protection to animals. Otherwise, they will be carried off their feet. When they give administrative guidance to animal traders and general people who are abusing or neglecting animals, they will not be able to accomplish any improvement unless they study and understand the real state of animal abuse in advance. Neglect is the most common and frequent form of abuse. Under the current situation, I am often bewildered at the great gap in awareness between the administration and those of us who are involved in animal welfare. Finally, when we have no choice but to put animals to sleep as a last resort after having tried every possible means, it is our duty and responsibility not to drive them into a CO2 chamber but to prepare a peaceful environment for animals where they can come to the last moment with no fear and pain.

Animal Doctor Inspector, Japan Animal Welfare Society
1979 -1981 After obtaining an inspector's license at RSPCA of the United Kingdom, received training in the field of animal welfare in the United Kingdom and Canada.
1975 Graduated from the Veterinary Department, the College of Agriculture, Osaka Prefecture University.After returning to Japan, she has been working as an animal doctor inspector of the Japan Animal Welfare Society.
Meanwhile, she has been engaged in animal policy making as a member of the Yokohama Group for Discussions about Animal Protection in 1989, a member of the Tokyo Animal Protection Management Council in 1998, and a member of a committee to work out basic plans for an animal companionship center in Niigata Prefecture in 2002.


As one of the persons engaged in various activities to improve the level of animal welfare, I often feel that there is a gap in the concept of animal welfare between Japan, where the rabies prevention law formed the nucleus of animal welfare, and some Western counties, where true animal welfare developed based on compassion among citizens for animals. In Japan, the basic job of animal welfare was to prevent animals from harming people, and to control animals as foods hygienically for the health of people. Hygiene was not necessarily needed for the welfare of animals. As one of the examples that symbolize this system, the department in charge that served as a window office for citizens was called the department of milk and meat hygiene for a long time. This name is still current in some areas. Animal welfare was regarded as a job of secondary importance. This is probably because the law for animal protection and control was enacted by foreign pressure, the administrative department was understaffed, those who were in charge did not have enough knowledge and experience, and they were only able to look after animal welfare in the intervals of their work for food hygiene. Recently, Hyogo and several other prefectures changed the name of the department to such names as animal hygiene and veterinary hygiene and there is a substantial change seen in their work. On the other hand, local agencies in rural areas do not show even basic awareness or understanding of matters regarding animal welfare, which central government agencies understand and are addressing. I sometimes get so disappointed that I even feel that I do not want to talk to them again.
In Hyogo where I live for example, the concept of animal welfare is steadily improving ever since the Hyogo Animal Companionship Center was established on April 23, 1998.
This verifies the importance of not only buildings but also facilities and atmospheres that encourage people who work in them. Though securing budget appropriations is getting difficult due to the recent business depression, we need a building as a base for generating ideas and making actions. It will also serve as a place of education for next generations. I wish heads of administrative agencies and assemblypersons to think about this and make due efforts for realization.
It is a place that is needed as a base for emergency rescue activities in a disaster, not only for animals but also for the safety of people. The most important point here is that the law for animal companionship and control may lose its significance unless administrative agencies make urgent efforts to improve the present state of animal abuse control.
Everyday work is often supported by the goodwill of staff members; therefore, things that are not managed under an established system, such as a day-off schedule, can deteriorate radically when the personnel are reshuffled.
As the law spreads, the people become more aware. Administrative agencies need to judge themselves from a standpoint as an enlightener, so that their management systems will not be the cause of the last problem.
We also need to abolish slaughter by carbonic acid gas, which is a leftover from the timer when mass killing was necessary. This is a matter that requires not only the attention of administrative agencies, but also the cooperation of veterinarian in private practice.
The law will soon be revised. I keep my eyes on the development, and I wish to make every possible effort for self-enlightenment.


Vice Chairperson, Hanshin Branch, Japan Animal Welfare Society
1991 Took office as assistant director of the Hanshin Branch
1978 Joined the Japan Animal Welfare Society
1970 Began animal rescue volunteer activities

Regarding cooperation with administrative agencies as important, she has participated in various committees and engaged in practical animal rescue activities for the betterment of animal welfare.
In 1995, she took office as assistant director of the Hanshin Awaji Earthquake Animal Rescue Headquarters.
She joined Society for the Study of Human Animal Relations and became a councilor.
In 1999, she joined the Pet Law Society.
In 2002, as a model administrative agency along with Fukuoka Prefecture, the メHyogo Council on Animal Companionship and Controlモ was established as an organization to promote the revised animal companionship law. She is cooperating in activities to spread the law as a member of the council as well as a promoter of animal companionship in Kobe.

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