ATHENS – the trial of a school teacher – not named – accused of stabbing a dog in the stomach in the western neighborhood of Nikaia was been pushed back to Nov. 4, the case bringing stinging outrage against the alleged perpetrator.
The anger is still spilling over with crowds gathering outside the court on Oct. 24 demanding severe punishment for the man, 54, and for a second defendant charged with hitting the dog on the head with a broomstick while it was being stabbed.
An eyewitness who notified police said the school teacher had the dog in a headlock while repeatedly stabbing it with a knife in the stomach and chest area, piercing its lung, the man later seeing an angry mob gather outside his house, screaming and screamed threats, not believing his claim the attack was done in self-defense despite the video showing the dog was essentially helpless.
Cruelty to animals, which has been treated lightly in Greece despite a proliferation of cases including killing, maiming and torture, will become a felony with harsher penalties for abusers.
In another case, on Crete, a 55-year-old man hung his dog from a tree and castrated it with a pair of pliers before passing tourists saw what was happening and stepped in to save the dog's life.
Agriculture Minister Makis Voridis earlier met with prominent animal rights activist Panagiotis Milas, who has been working with local authorities to create a special department within the municipal police force to deal with animal cruelty, said Kathimerini.
The aim of the amendment will be to make it easier for authorities to prosecute animal abusers and for stricter penalties after the former ruling Radical Left SYRIZA moved to lessen penalties for animal abuse before withdrawing it after outcries from society.
The dogs in both incidents underwent surgery and were said to be recovering from their injuries. Under laws designed to protect their privacy, none of the people who abused the animals were named.
The dog, which underwent emergency surgery, was said to be recovering at the Schisto Stray Animal Care Center.