Stop French Vacationers from Abandoning their Pets

Target: France 24 and other major French news outlets

Goal: Provide greater publicity concerning the issue of vacationers who abandon their pets

French may own more pets than citizens of any other European country, but this doesn’t mean French pets are supremely valued. It is shockingly common for some French to abandon their pets to take month-long vacations in the summer, so common, in fact, that various animal welfare groups have launched annual campaigns to combat the issue. While many French wouldn’t dare leave their pets behind, the French have developed a reputation for treating pets like disposable stuffed animals. Major media outlets like France 24 must devote more attention to this alarming trend in order to save innocent lives.

France is home to 61 million domestic animals, and more than half of all households contain at least one pet. Pets are welcomed just about everywhere, including at restaurants. Yet each summer about 100,000 pets are abandoned when their owners can’t bring them along or they cannot find someone to care for them. The problem is continent-wide, and especially acute in Spain and Italy. Pet abandonment is illegal, but difficult to enforce.

The French SPCA launches a giant media campaign at the start of the summer, including giant posters with sad-eyed dogs in the Paris Metro. But Anne-Claire Chauvancy of the Foundation for the Assistance of Animals wonders if the campaign is effective, noting, “This campaign has become almost banal and just seems to mark the beginning of summer.”

In a country that so welcomes pets as France does, it is surprising that a culture of abandonment exists simultaneously. Although there are no easy solutions, more national media publicity would highlight the seriousness of the problem and incite more people to take action to address it. Demand more media attention from networks like France 24 to combat the critical issue of pet abandonment by French vacationers.


Dear France 24,

Around 100,000 pets are abandoned in France each summer when vacationers can’t bring them along or find someone to care for them. In a country that is so welcoming of pets, it’s shocking to learn that they are treated like disposable stuffed animals.

Animal welfare organizations have launched campaigns in an attempt to combat the problem, but Anne-Claire Chauvancy of the Foundation for the Assistance of Animals wonders if the campaign is effective, noting, “This campaign has become almost banal and just seems to mark the beginning of summer.”

Surely animal welfare groups would benefit if a national media outlet such as yours dedicated serious publicity to the issue. Although there are no easy solutions, more media attention may incite people to take action against pet abandonment. Please consider devoting more media attention to pet abandonment by vacationers in order to save the lives of countless animals.


[Your Name Here]

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  1. The French really need to make laws, and vigorously prosecute anyone who would abandon these innocent animals. The animal sanctuaries need to make this a priority so they do not become so full that their only recourse is to kill these abandoned animals. Spaying clinics and no-kill shelters should play a part in every country as a way to make animals wanted and cared for.


  3. Alice Knight says:

    Perhaps people should explore the idea of not going on vacation when owning a pet. When you decide to own a pet there are some sacrifices you need to be aware of, this is just one of them


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