Abandoned Pets: Know the consequences

cat-abandonDo you want to pay €25,000 because you failed to find a home for your pet before you PCSed? For most people the answer to this one is easily NO.

Like most people, the government doesn’t have this kind of cash lying around either. In some cases German city leaders in communities associated with military posts have asked for reimbursement from other garrisons because taking care of stray animals that are left behind can be costly.

The Schweinfurt Veterinary Treatment Facility is trying to combat this issue and wants you to be aware of the consequences of pet abandonment.

The ‘Did you know’ information section below can help you and your family prepare for an upcoming PCS or ETS if you have a pet.


  • Pet abandonment is illegal in Germany and can be punishable by a fine up to €25,000, regardless if a Soldier has PCS/ETSed back to the states. Under the Status of Forces Agreement Germany has the right to prosecute a Soldier for pet abandonment.
  • Pet abandonment can be considered animal cruelty which is considered a felony in many U.S. states.
  • Soldiers needing to find a good home for their pet can contact the VTF for assistance free of charge. To ensure that a home will be found for their pet it is advised to contact all resources outside that page to find a new home for their pet.
  • ALL Soldiers who have pets should register them with the VTF immediately. There is no fee and it is required by the SOFA with Germany. The more pets that are being tracked in the community, the better we can ensure they are not abandoned.
  • The VTF can easily help provide health certificates for pets and provide you with the information you need in order to successfully PCS back to the states with your pet.

Not only is the VTF working to make sure that pets are not abandoned, but the housing office and Bldg. 40 are helping as well. To ensure that pets do not slip through the cracks unit leaders and commanders are also being asked to  help ensure that their Soldiers have plans for their pets or that they are taking responsibility and finding them a new home.

To learn what you can do to help make sure pets in the Schweinfurt area are cared for contact the VTF, DSN 353-8359, CIV 09721-96-8359, International 011-49-9721-96-8359.


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