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World Animal Protection partners with Rio 2016 Olympics

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World Animal Protection and the Organising Committee for the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games have announced a partnership to help keep Rio’s animals safe in the run up to and during the Games.

Sporting events for the Olympic and Paralympic Games will be held in more than 30 different facilities across Rio de Janeiro. Many animals live close to these venues.

World Animal Protection is training Olympic operational teams to correctly handle animals, offering guidelines on responsible pet ownership for the communities of Rio de Janeiro, and organising adoption campaigns for dogs and cats in partnership with the Special Secretariat for the Defense of Animals (SEPDA).

Rosangela Ribeiro, Veterinary Program Manager at World Animal Protection said,“We hope that the Rio 2016 Games will set an example for other major sporting events because the joy and celebrations of the events can cause much distress for animals of the organising city.”

“We are proud to be working with the Rio 2016 Organising Committee to make sure the animals across Rio are safe, and the owners of animals feel confident they can keep them safe and well,” said Ribeiro. 

Julie Duffus Sustainability Manager at Rio 2016 said, “We were delighted when World Animal Protection offered their support. We trust their technical advice and it has helped us to create and implement management plans for animals who may get into venues, or near the huge crowds. Without them we would have struggled to do it.”

World Animal Protection veterinarians will provide training to employees located across the Olympic venues on safe and humane animal handling to ensure the Games can run smoothly and that guests to the city can feel safe in the knowledge that stray animals entering venues are being cared for and will not be considered a nuisance.

With a large number of residences neighbouring the sports facilities, communities will be given advice on taking extra care of their pets during this busy period. At previous Olympic Games animals have been known to invade areas intended for competitions and training, putting their own lives at risk and potentially causing accidents or interruptions.

Working together with the Rio 2016 Organising Committee, the charity will carry out community awareness raising events about the importance of keeping domestic animals safe at home during the competitions.

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