Police raids uncover ‘ruthless’ tiger trade in Europe

Jul 23, 2018

Petition calls for EU ban on commercial trade to protect tigers   Conservationists are urging the EU to ban all commercial trade in tigers and tiger parts, after recent police operations found the trade is not only an issue in Asia, but also Central Europe. Police and customs officials in the Czech Republic raided properties in Prague and central and northern Bohemia, on suspicion of illegally killing tigers and possessing tiger products. A recently killed tiger was seized at one of the properties, where a suspect was processing tiger bones and other tiger products. The suspects shot the tigers in the eyes to avoid damaging the skin and those killed were used to make tiger broth. Czech authorities also found tiger meat and products on sale at the Vietnamese market, Sapa, in Prague. According to international animal charity FOUR PAWS, one of the raided facilities was owned by circus leader Ludvik Berousek. Research by the charity in June shows a meeting in which Mr Berousek revealed his tiger breeding facility in... ...

Read More

Illegal puppy trade pushes up charity’s seizure rate

Mar 19, 2018

Welfare charity the Scottish SPCA reports 44% increase in animals seized as a result of cruelty investigations conducted throughout 2017. A 44% increase in animals seized as a result of animal cruelty investigations in Scotland has been reported by the Scottish SPCA.   Scotland’s animal welfare charity also revealed almost half of the record 302 animals taken into care by its inspectors, following cases submitted to the Crown Office, in 2017 were victims of the illegal puppy trade. Banned Chief executive Kirsteen Campbell said: “Overall, 52 people were banned from owning animals last year following our investigations. That’s an average of one every week, with many of these animals having suffered in the most appalling conditions. “The illegal puppy trade remains a major concern, with 143 of the record 302 animals seized by our inspectors and undercover special investigations unit last year rescued from dealers who treat dogs as nothing more than commodities. “Furthermore, we prevented an additional 75 puppies involved in the illegal puppy trade entering Scotland via Cairnryan... ...

Read More

Proposed tough action on puppy trade welcomed

Jan 15, 2018

Veterinary and animal welfare bodies have applauded the Government’s stated intention to implement the biggest-ever legal crackdown on unscrupulous puppy farmers and smugglers in England. Proposed legislation – which could be introduced early this year – will also seek to address the breeding of unhealthy dogs with severe genetic disorders. Responding to the Government’s announcement, BVA president John Fishwick said: “Responsible breeding and ownership of pets are among vets’ priorities, so we commend the Government’s plans for new and updated legislation around the buying and selling of pets, ensuring it is fit for purpose in the internet age we live in. “We also welcome the Government’s efforts to combat the illegal trade in puppies. As vets, we see first-hand the tragic consequences that can result from poorly bred and illegally imported puppies, with almost one third of vets reporting concerns about illegally imported puppies last Christmas [2016].” RSPCA interim chief executive Michael Ward also welcomed the announcement, saying: “This is good news for the hundreds of thousands of dogs bought... ...

Read More

Gove outlines plans for farming post-Brexit

Jan 8, 2018

Defra secretary Michael Gove has shed light on future plans for the farming industry post-Brexit, in a speech at the Oxford Farming Conference. Mr Gove said he wants to drive change in four specific areas: creating a “coherent” policy on food; giving farmers the time and tools to adapt to the future; implementing a new method for providing financial support to farmers; and developing a sustainable future for the countryside. The secretary of state also proposed to invest more in technology, including super-fast broadband, reliable 5G coverage and sensor technology that can tell where, when and how livestock should be fed, housed and bred to maximise yield, health and welfare. The UK will formally leave the EU in March 2019, but the government expects to agree a transition period of a further two years. Mr Gove’s comments come ahead of the government’s Command Paper, which is due to be published this spring. Trade negotiations As trade negotiations are about to get underway, Mr Gove said Defra “is preparing for every... ...

Read More