One ‘Trade’ which should be scrutinised.

Whilst the very idea of crusading on anything excepting politics, and how we are actually governed, is the last thing on my mind, I came across a blog post which did stir some mild resentment; If I might expand a little.

Normally, I am no great ‘animal rights expert’, my feelings and opinions amount to the hope that there should be no actual cruelty in the rearing, transportation or death of animals which have been reared to provide mankind with food, and similar hope as regards animals which are kept or looked upon as family pets. I am of the firm belief that animals are not sentient beings, despite many people tending to anthropomorphise animals, birds etc, based upon their dark eyes or on their alleged ability to detect or understand human voice commands or terms of endearment. If other people view pets or other animals as ‘almost human’; it is my belief that they delude themselves. I would just point to the large number of attacks by dogs upon either their owners, upon small children visitors, or upon other animals. These attacks happen because all dogs, large and small, are descendants of the wolf; and you cannot find a more unpredictable or dangerous animal in the wild than a wolf, bred through countless centuries to do one thing, and one thing only, which is to kill for the sake of the pack, for food; and to demonstrate that the alpha-male wolf is the leader.

But I digress, and would return to my original theme, which is that we should ensure that all transported animals, whether it be UK horses sent for use as carcasses in France, or beef cattle sent from Australia towards the Middle East; are transported decently, and with due regard for the regulations which should rule all live animal transport. As this sea-going vet states, with due regard for written English:—  Live Export is in Deep Shit. She writes of having to attain a bows-light state so all the hundreds of tons of livestock urine and shit, along with innumerable gallons of water, run down towards the ship’s stern, and also to set a starboard list to encourage the shit to flow over the starboard side of the ship at the stern; whilst on a never-ending cycle of washing, cleansing, saw-dust spreading and health checking for the whole voyage. I would end this small polemic by giving just one photograph of the conditions for the animals whilst on board, and wondering what dreadful diseases are carried off the ships and into the abbattoirs, as they discharge their hapless cargo?

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6 comments for “One ‘Trade’ which should be scrutinised.

  1. Voice of Reason
    July 7, 2016 at 2:17 pm

    Having owned a parrot, I would respectfully disagree on the issue of sentience.

  2. richard
    July 7, 2016 at 3:31 pm

    Seconded by a one-time jackdaw owner.
    If animals aren’t sentient why are you posting about their bad treatment? Mushrooms aren’t sentient but it’s different when a cow is covered in shit. The clue lies in the posession of a brain.

  3. July 7, 2016 at 6:13 pm

    Are we talking sentient or sensitive?

  4. Stonyground
    July 7, 2016 at 6:23 pm

    I would define sentient as being capable of feeling pain. On that definition, all animals are sentient obviously. It was concern for the treatment of animals by the meat industry that led me to give up meat around fifteen years ago. Being a vegetarian is much easier nowadays as there are plenty of alternatives to meat. The Asda meat free Lincolnshire sausages are so good that they are worth trying even if you aren’t a vegetarian.

  5. Errol
    July 7, 2016 at 6:37 pm

    While you’re right, that dogs are descendants of the wolf, my Newfoundland is no more dangerous than a large pillow. His most frightening act, actually, is to sit down near junior. He, however, is well trained. He has to be. Far too many owners just haul their dogs about. My nieces at the age of 4 could walk Wiggy. Why? because he walks beside them and knows his place in the pack.

    As regards wider animal cruelty – most people do not care. If there’s cash involved, they couldn’t give a stuff about the animal. These people also have a low opinion of all life.

    I can’t comment on sentience as logically the animal mind hasn’t the same capacities we have yet given the choice between some people and Claude, a grumpy, short tempered burmese I’d rather have the cat lived a decade longer and if I could give a bit of my life for her, I’d do it.

  6. July 8, 2016 at 2:58 am

    Let us not get hung up over the word (or concept) of ‘sentience’. The argument stands with or without it. The treatment of animals tells us about us. One other matter of criticism though (which also does not count against the argument) is the term and description, ‘alpha male’. The term was first written by a biologist fellow studying wolves. It quickly became applied to ‘men’ as a ‘boast’ / expletive term. The same chap very soon after rebutted his own attribution and said that the animal in a pack to which the term had been applied was simply the Father. And that was the better term. That animal was leader by default of age and experience and being the progeniteur. His actions were of teaching, guidance, protection and provision of and for his offspring. These terms are not ‘anthropomorphising’; simply economical descriptors. It was not a term to be used for describing wild violence.

    But… to the transportation and demise of animals. We raise and we sell, we transport and we kill. Those to whom we sell, or permit to transport, who then go on to mistreat the animals, tell of themselves. Bravo that lady Vet who has been ‘black-balled’ by the industry. She stands and is counted. She tells of herself too.

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