The Constitution fosters the regard paid to animal protection in the EU.
The "Protocol on protection and welfare of animals", appended to the EC Treaty of Amsterdam in 1997, is incorporated in Part III of the Constitution as a horizontal provision, i.e. a provision that applies to all policy areas. In addition it is stipulated that animals must be considered as "sentient beings".
The provision on animal protection in the Constitution reads as follows:
"In formulating and implementing the Union's agriculture, fisheries, transport, internal market, research and technological development and space policies, the Union and the Member States shall, since animals are sentient beings, pay full regard to the requirements of animal welfare, while respecting the legislative or administrative provisions and customs of Member States relating in particular to religious rites, cultural traditions and regional heritage."