Swiss Town Threatens to Kill Dogs Over Taxes Due

If you are a person who shares your life with a dog, you won’t want to move to Reconvilier, Switzerland any time soon.

The small town about 100 miles (160 kilometers) northeast of Geneva has a population of 2,245 humans and 280 dogs.  In need of more money for infrastructure, Town Council decided to start enforcing an old law from 1904.

This law allows for killing a dog whose owner does not pay the annual $50 dog tax.

Needless to say, townspeople are upset and dismayed by the approach.  Town clerk Pierre-Alain Nemitz has received death threats over the new approach to tax collection.

Nemitz is quoted: “This isn’t about a mass execution of dogs, it’s meant to put pressure on people who don’t cooperate.” 

Okay… but when “push comes to shove” as the expression goes, will council be willing to actually kill any dogs?  In my experience, making a threat you are not willing to carry out — doesn’t work!

Let’s hope the good people of Reconvilier can work out another approach with authorities.  Does anyone have any suggestions?

Photo credit: Victoria Vasilieva via Flickr

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Martha Eberle
Martha Eberle4 years ago

This is merely a threat to get scofflaws to pay up, that's all. They would never kill the dogs -- as many pet lovers as there are in the world, it would bring on a revolution, like in Cairo. No kidding.

Chris Z.
Chris Z.4 years ago

LOL, calm down people. This would never actually happen. This was a brain fart by some local community council. They dug up this old law that everybody had forgotten about to try to scare some people into paying these taxes. There is no way they could ever go through with that. They have been properly reprimanded not only by the public but also by state and federal offices in charge of such affairs for even entertaining such a thought. There are many other more recent laws that would prevent them from doing any such thing.

Past Member 4 years ago

In France we don't pay taxes for animals. Switzerland seems to be normally a pacific country, even a neutral country. How can they authorize this??? I will never go to this country!

Kathryn Pierce
Kathryn Pierce4 years ago

I don't see how it's any different from what we have here in the US. I pay $100 license fees/taxes to the county to keep my animals. If I don't pay the fees and I get caught, they get confiscated. Then, I either have to pay the fees to get my animals back, or they're put up for adoption. If your dog or cat isn't licensed and it's picked up, it's also put up for adoption if you don't claim it and pay the fees. But guess what? All our shelters are overpopulated, so many of those confiscated/stray animals are put down. Now, how does that differ from what the Swiss are doing?

The solution? Pay your fees and keep your animals legal. Just because the law hasn't been enforced doesn't mean it's OK to break it. There are too many people here in the US who dodge the dog & cat license fees - and even the vaccinations - and guess who pays in the long run? The animals do. And so do the honest people who pay their fees and get their animals vaccinated - and wind up paying through those fees for the shelter to kill the unwanted pets.

Wake up, people!

Jaime L.
Jaime Lopez4 years ago

BASTARDS what is wrong with you "people" in Switzeland? that's the stupidest law I ever heard, instead why don't you kill your kids instead of the dogs?? ah would you like that??? no right, well dogs are part of their families also so why should they be killed for $.50, please stop that nonsense stupid council.

Victoria M.
Past Member 4 years ago

wow.. hokey fright what a retarded solution.

Nancy C.
Nancy C.4 years ago


Ann P.
A P.4 years ago

Wait is the same Swiss that have banks that hold money from tax evaders of all sorts, and that hold assets taken from the Jews prior to internment?

Past Member 4 years ago

if they do...i think we'll see some officials replaced really quickly....and how about taking a pay cut for the city officials..why is it that no politician every thinks of pay cuts in terms of themselves or anything other than the public forking over more money.....

poepiesnoepie k.
Past Member 4 years ago

soooooooo wrong!... are there no other alternative solution for this??