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Illegal pet sellers busted and 50 animals are rescued in Feria Libre raid

Approximately 50 pets were rescued Wednesday in a joint operation coordinated by the Commission for Environmental Management (CGA) in the El Arenal (Feria Libre) market. The operation began at 6 a.m. on Pasaje Nicanor Cobo street, with a citation issued to a vendor who had seven dogs in two cages in violation of ordinances addressing animal cruelty.

Dogs and cats rescued at Feria Libre will be up for adoption Saturday at Parque L Libertad.

The rescue, carried out by the National Police, Citizen Guard, officials of the CGA and Market Management of the Municipality of Cuenca, resulted in the confiscation of 40 dogs and 10 cats that were being marketed illegally.

The rescued pets were taken by CGA staff to assess their health and prepare them for adoption on Saturday in La Libertad Park at a time to be determined.

As a result of the operation, three citations were given to sellers with concessions in the market, and informative material was distributed to 13 sellers detailing animal safety ordinances. Marcelo Álvarez, director of city markets informed all vendors that regulations are being drafted to prohibit the sale of animals in El Arenal permanently.

Alvarez also noted that It is illegal to sell abandoned “street” animals.

The mistreatment of, and or breeding for commercial purposes, of abandoned animals carries a fine of $95. Abandonment of pets in public spaces has a sanction of $198.

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