Countries Doing the Most to Protect Endangered Animals

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Germany
> Animal Protection Index grade: B

Germany received its highest marks from API in formal recognition of animal sentience; laws against animal suffering; and protecting animals used in farming, as companion animals, and in scientific research. Provisions of the German Animal Welfare Act regards animals as fellow creatures and states that no person may cause an animal pain, suffering, or harm without good reason.

Among Germany’s most threatened mammals are the European mink, European Otter, and the Garden Dormouse, all of which are threatened because of loss of habitat.

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Denmark
> Animal Protection Index grade: B

The Scandinavian country scored well in regard to laws against causing animals suffering and protecting animals used in farming and scientific research. The government has embarked on an initiative called the Danish Nature Policy – Our Shared Nature, a biodiversity strategy that aims to halt the loss of diversity in the natural environment by 2020.

Endangered species in Denmark include butterflies, amphibians, and birds. At-risk species face problems, including habitat degradation, because of overdevelopment and use of excessive nutrients.

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Chile
> Animal Protection Index grade: B

The South American country was cited for its support for the universal declaration on animal welfare (UDAW) and protecting animals used in farming. API said Chile’s government has expressed support for the UDAW to work with other nations to improve the welfare of animals. Laws to protect animals on farms were first passed in 2009.

Many of Chile’s endangered species are mammals like short-tailed and long-tailed chinchillas, river otters, and Pacific Degus. Chile has put in conservation laws to protect these animals.

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United Kingdom
> Animal Protection Index grade: A

The United Kingdom has a long tradition of taking care of animals, and that is reflected in governmental involvement. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs has responsibility for animal welfare, with the exception of scientific research. The department says on its website that animal welfare is one of its top priorities. The U.K. gets API’s highest mark for government accountability for animal welfare. Other areas where the U.K. receives its highest grades from the Animal Protection Index are: formal recognition of animal sentience; laws against causing animal suffering; protecting animals used in farming, scientific research, and as companion animals.

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Switzerland
> Animal Protection Index grade: A

The Central European nation received API’s highest marks on the Animal Protection Index for its formal recognition of animal sentience; laws against causing animal suffering; and for protecting animals used in farming and scientific research. As of August 2016, there were at least 49 species in Switzerland classified as endangered, according to the IUCN.