Frequently asked questions for municipal veterinary clinics

The PFPO is promoting the institution of Municipal veterinary clinics

Athens, January 10th 2014

The Pan-Hellenic Animal Welfare and Environment Federation, in an endless attempt to protect animal rights and sensitize the Greek state and the citizens not only by highlighting the problems but also by suggesting solutions to these problems, is carrying out a project to encourage and inform the bodies concerned (Municipal authorities and animal welfare associations), in order to create municipal veterinary clinics all over the country.


Our project is EXCLUSIVELY informative and advisory, as we do are not aware of the special conditions in every municipality (economic and social). Our suggestions can be adjusted to the potential of each municipality, to the bilateral agreements between municipalities and volunteers and of course to the contracts with the veterinarians.


In the context of our effort, we are addressing the Veterinary School of the University of Thessaloniki and the Pan-Hellenic Veterinarians’ Association, hoping that they will support us and will encourage veterinarians to cover, in the future, vacancies in the municipal veterinary clinics.


In order to help both parties (municipalities and veterinarians) we have prepared informative material (FAQ) and, soon, a list of the veterinarians who are interested.


If the name of a veterinarian is included in the list, he or she has no obligation, just enables him to contact the municipality through the PFPO.


With this initiative we hope to:


  • Help municipalities create veterinary clinics.

  • Prevent unsterilized and ill animals from being marginalized.

  • Give young and unemployed veterinarians the chance to obtain valuable experience.

  • Improve the health condition of stray animals.


1.Why should a Municipality choose to open a Municipal clinic and not a shelter?
The former does not exclude the latter. In fact, the latter is obligatory and follows the former.

2. Which is the budget to create and run a shelter?
If the shelter observes the legal standards and the rules of animal welfare, the budget is very high. In any case it is much higher than the budget of a municipal clinic. As state subsidy is rather impossible, municipalities will not be able to pay the costs. A further problem is the fact that they cannot employ staff.

3. Is it possible to create a municipal veterinary clinic inside a shelter?
Yes of course. If there is a decent and legal municipal shelter for stray pet animals, no special decision of the local municipal council is required for the creation of a veterinary clinic in the same place

4. What is the purpose of a municipal veterinary clinic inside a shelter?
Animals in a shelter have to be all sterilized and regularly taken care of by a veterinarian, before they can be reintegrated or adopted. Unsterilized animals are the disaster of Greek shelters.

5. Which reasons turn a decent shelter to a hell?
Α. The lack of veterinary care
Β. The lack of sterilization, resulting in animals being reproduced inside the shelter
C. The lack of control of the number of animals (there has to be strict guarding, so that people are discouraged to abandon their pets in the shelters as if they were garbage…)
D. The failure to organize a proper adoption program
Ε. The shelter ends up becoming a place where animals are “retired” and not guests for a short time. After some time animals are asylumised and are not able to be adopted or reintegrated.
F. Indifference and lack of action from the municipalities, because of a lack of culture. Moreover, they are unaware of their obligations before the law and the citizens, their budgets are reduced and they do not know how to deal with the problem.

6. Why open a municipal veterinary clinic and not buy the services of private veterinarians?
For economic and practical reasons: A private veterinarian will not have enough time for all the animals of the shelter. If a municipal veterinary clinic is created, which has very low cost, more animals will be taken care of. 

7. Is it possible for neighboring municipalities to open a common veterinary clinic?
This is provided for by the law and it is a clever solution, especially when are rich municipality borders a poorer one.

8. How can a municipality open a veterinary clinic at low cost?
In an unexploited area of the municipality, a pre-constructed building can be place (all municipalities have some of them) or turn an unexploited room or building into a veterinary clinic. The procedure is described by the law…

9. How necessary is the cooperation between municipalities and animal welfare associations?
According to law 4039/2012, art. 9 par. 1, municipalities are responsible to collect and manage stray pet animals. According to the law, animal welfare organizations and associations are also responsible, provided they have the “infrastructure, consisting in the existence of proper relevant facilities or vehicles to carry the animals”. However, because of the economic crisis, municipalities and associations are not able to carry out this work. Problems can be solved with the cooperation of these bodies. Municipalities have some unexploited facilities so they can give the necessary infrastructure to the animal welfare organizations and associations, so that they collect and manage stray pet animals with their own means and their own staff.

10. Does the municipal veterinary clinic perform all veterinary acts or only sterilizations, vaccinations and electronic marking?
The municipal veterinary clinic is a regular veterinary clinic, able to perform all veterinary acts.

11. Does the municipal veterinary clinic serve citizens who belong to vulnerable social groups?
According to article 4, par.3b, the vulnerable social groups (Persons with special needs, people with three children, people with many children, one-parent families, unemployed, poor people) are served for all veterinary acts by the municipal veterinary clinics.

12. Can an animal welfare association found a veterinary clinic?
Yes. This is provided for my law 4039/2012. With the new circulation (ΒΕΑ8Β-Π4Ζ), the procedure is made simpler and the preconditions clearer.

13. What are the building standards?
According to P.D. 463/1978 and law 604/1977(on foundation – function of a veterinary clinic, terms and conditions) two rooms are enough, with dimensions at least 12 sq.m. each, easy to clean, and a bathroom. A water-heater is also necessary and, if possible, air-conditioning because of the weather conditions in Greece.

14. Which is the NECESSARY equipment for a veterinary clinic to be given permission;
At least one surgical bed, A work bench, sufficient light, surgical tools (usually each veterinarian prefers his or her own), a sterilization method for the tools (preferably a furnace), a refridgerator, office equipment (the necessary items e.g. a desk, chairs, wardrobes etc).
Anything else (centrifugal, microscope, oxygen device, X-ray machine etc) are welcome but are not a precondition for the permission.

15. Does a recovery room have to exist?
In order to give permission to a veterinary clinic no recovery room is obligatory. However, it would be good that such a room exists.

16. What would be advisable as a recovery room?
It depends on the needs and the capacities of each municipality. If there is a shelter, the shelter could do. Otherwise, it could be a second pre-constructed house or, if the veterinary clinic is founded in a building of the municipality, a specially designed room (with a place for dogs and baskets for cats, with heating in winter of course).

17. What is “complete recovery”?
The time when an operated animal is ready to be reintegrated into its natural environment. This depends on the method each veterinarian follows (small or large incision).
In any case, the recovery time has to be short. Mainly when it comes to animals which do not cooperate (like many stray cats) they do not have to be isolated from their natural territory.

18. When are sterilizations effective for an area?
When they are massive and there is no possibility for animals to be reproduced.

19. What are the criteria when a municipality chooses a veterinarian for the municipal veterinary clinic?
The low cost and the best result.

20. Does the veterinarian of the municipal clinic have to be a member of the local veterinarians’ association?
Not necessarily, but he or she has to be a member of the Pan-Hellenic Veterinarians’ Association.

21. Which are the recommended prices of the veterinarians for pet animals?
Average price for cat sterilization (male or female) : 10 – 30 euros
Average price for dog sterilization (male or female): 40 – 60 euros

22. What do these prices include?
Fee, materials, recovery for one day

23. Which are the prices for vaccinations?
Vaccinations are carried out free of charge and it is the responsibility of the municipality to provide vaccines (MAINLY AGAINST RABIES) and the fistulas, if it has employed a veterinarian for the municipal veterinary clinic or has a valid contract with a private veterinarian.  

24. Which is the price of electronic marking?
The electronic marking of STRAY ANIMALS is free, if the municipality provides the microchips.

25. What is the price of blood sampling?

26. What is the benefit for a young veterinarian from his or her participation in a program to support municipal vet clinics?
Apart from the payment, which will be defined by the contract of each Municipality and which will be a minimum compensation,  he or she will obtain knowledge and experience which will be valuable in his or her future career and of course he or she will enjoy offering to the society, which is so important in our days. 

27. In the municipal veterinary clinic, the veterinary acts have to be performed ONLY by the scientifically responsible veterinarian?
No. The law (article 9, par.11) provides that, in the veterinary clinic, another veterinarian, described as “volunteer” can perform veterinary acts.  If the volunteer is a foreigner, he or she has to fulfill the necessary requirements in order to be able to work as a veterinarian in Greece according to the legislation in force.

28. Who pays the veterinarian?
The municipality or the animal welfare association, if there is a bilateral contract with the veterinarian (which is also a cooperation agreement).


1 comment for “Frequently asked questions for municipal veterinary clinics

  1. Bruno Hochuli
    Thursday, 8 January, 2015 at 18:14


    We try since some years to organise kastrations with German Vets with legal working permission in Greece. But the Major from Ierapetra or his right Hand Mr. Andreas Papadopetrakis does not give us permission to kastrate the stray Animals around the Villages near to and in Ierapetra. All Summer we get telefoncalls from Tourists which find Puppies, Kittens and grown up Dogs in Wastebins, on Streets or tied up to die. This is not good for Greece, because the Tourists dont like to see this and will not make Holidays in Greece anymore. We help the stray Animals since 10 Years. But now we can just help to organise kastrations, because we dont have money to buy so much food and pay all the work from the Vet in Ierapertra. The Dimos should care about all this, but they hide behind Laws and just make problems to us. When we make a Dokument for the Dimos to give permission for Kastrations they dont give us a direct answer. They want some other Dokuments. Working permission from the German Vets. Then they want a Dokument from a Vetz to prove the Vets can work in his Clinic. When we have this they want again something else. They just play with us.
    I dont know why, because the German Vets work for free and the Medication is also free. The Name of the Group is Arche Noah in Germany. They help since many years in Crete if they are allowed to.

    Thanking you in advance for an answer

    Bruno Hochuli
    Animalhelp Kato Chorio, Ierapetra

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