Težko bi kdo bolje opisal realnost kot Macfarlanova, ki se je odločila za email kampanijo, s katero poziva odgovorne k ukrepanju.
Četudi ne boste pisma nikamor poslali, je prav, da ga preberete in se seznanite s tem, kaj v resnici 'reševanje' psov iz Bosne, Srbije in Makedonije je in kaj prinaša. Če pa se boste le odločili, da pismo nekomu odpošljete, je eden od naslovov, kamor bi tudi moralo romati in kjer bi ga morali prebrati, zagotovo firstname.lastname@example.org
. Čeprav se osredotoča predvsem na razmere pri uvozu psov v UK, že v uvodu navaja, da so razmere v ostalih državah EU podobne.
Vir je Barnabys Law
, uporabniki FB ga od tam lahko tudi delite.Below is an open letter detailing several of the issues with international rescue. If you agree, please share this post and email a copy of the letter to those listed below. Please add your name to the bottom of the letter.
Ispod je otvoreno pismo koje sadrži nekoliko problema sa međunarodnim spašavanjem. Ako se slažete, molimo vas da podelite ovaj post i pošaljete kopiju pisma onima navedenim u nastavku. Molimo vas da dodate svoje ime na dno slova.
Ispod je otvoreno pismo s pojedinostima o međunarodnom spašavanju. Ako se slažete, podijelite ovaj post i pošaljite e-poštom kopiju pisma onima navedenim u nastavku. Dodajte svoje ime na dno slova.
An Open Letter to Michael Gove, DEFRA, APHA, Professor Lord Trees and other parties
I write in reference to the international animal rescue industry, with particular focus on imports to the UK from the Balkans and non EU countries. The situation is similar for imports to Germany, France and other EU countries.
My concerns cover three aspects of this industry; animal welfare, potential health risks to the UK and support of corruption and criminal activity.Animal Welfare:
Rescue animals must enter the UK as commercial goods and therefore transported by a T2 type transporter. They cannot enter under the Pet Passport Scheme.
The illegal, non EU dogs are first transported to Hungary or Romania, many do not survive this journey as proven by the Bosnian 5 who died in July this year. The animals are then put on a transporter with up to 60 animals for 2-5 days during which time they are subjected to containment in a crate in which they must urinate and defecate. Many of these animal have recently been spayed or neutered and have open wounds. Animals have arrived with broken limbs, open sores, parvo, distemper and should not have been certified as fit and healthy to travel. Carrying injured or sick animals in these conditions is contrary to the animals welfare and yet the EU have delayed publishing specific transport welfare regulations for cats and dogs since 2016.
Many of these dogs are not assessed, they have never seen a vet and the people who “rescued” them are not qualified nor experienced in animal health and behaviour. As such, we have large numbers of dogs arriving here who “escape” on arrival or shortly after, many are subsequently killed on our roads and others are never found or end up in our pounds.
We have dogs arriving who have never lived as a domestic pet and bite their new owners, bite children, visitors or neighbours. The more fortunate of these dogs have rescue back up and are rehabilitated but a growing number do not and are passed from pillar to post or resigned to a life in kennels or put to sleep.
Dogs arrive with serious health issues which the new owners simply cannot afford and so this cost is either passed to the rescue or the dog is put to sleep. Treatment for the animal would have cost a fraction of the price in its country of origin but because it came illegally having never seen a vet, diagnosis is not made until arrival in the UK
To summarise, many sick and injured animals are illegally trafficked in a transit van with up to 60 animals, they spend 2-5 days in cramped conditions, stressed and having to toilet in their crate. On arrival, some will escape, others be passed from pillar to post and others will be killed on our roads or put to sleep. Is it animal welfare to only publicise the success stories?Puppy farming.
A growing trend is the import of “breed pups” from breeders/puppy farms. They are carried 4-6 to a crate at a cost of £50 meaning a puppy smuggler can have 10 breed pups transported for £500. The pups are delivered to the sellers door with minimum risk of conviction or seizure. Already, some ”rescues” are advertising rescue dogs at a “premium price” because they are breed pups. It’s anticipated this problem will be exasperated on implementation of the new animal welfare regulations.Potential Health Risk to the UK:
As APHA figures show, 0 dogs have entered the UK on traces from Serbia in 2018, 17 from Bosnia and 0 from Macedonia. The reality is, hundreds of dogs from each of these countries and a lesser number from the Ukraine are entering every month. APHA have been provided with evidence of this and a quick search on Facebook or Goggle for “rescue dog Bosnia”, “rescue dog Serbia” etc. shows the extent of the problem. There are UK based charities, non-profits and individuals bringing in dogs from all of the aforementioned countries and as these are not recorded in the APHA figures, it proves they are non-compliant with UK regulations on entry. The majority are entering on Romanian traces with Romanian passports with some entering using the Pet Passport Scheme.
Non-compliance with EU and UK import regulations means the animals have not been in a registered facility before transport where they should be regularly health checked and their documents certified. Neither are they checked by the EU vet at the Border Inspection Point on entry to the EU. As they enter the UK under the guise of Romanian dogs, our border control, APHA inspectors and trading standards are unable to identify illegal dogs from legitimate ones.
Many of these dogs are entering with no rabies vaccination and last year there were numerous cases of dogs arriving with parvo virus and distemper. Further, some dogs are either not wormed or wormed outside the time frame required by the UK and enter from countries where echinococcus is endemic and it could be many years before outbreaks and human infection are recorded in the UK.
Granted Serbian, Bosnia and Macedonia pose minimal threat of rabies contamination however, the Ukraine is a high risk country and rescue dogs are being illegally imported from the Ukraine, Russia and further afield. It should not take a rabies outbreak before those trusted with ensuring the safety of domestic pets, humans and wildlife in the UK take action.
Norway is a prime example, it is a nation of animal lovers with some of the best animal welfare regulations in the world and yet they made the decision to ban the import of rescue animals and restricted movement using the pet passport to animals owned by and under the control of the owner for six months. This was based on an in depth study showing 45% of rescue dogs did not have sufficient rabies antibodies and a lack of cooperation from the countries involved to enforce the regulations. Despite this, organisations in Norway are still raising donations and sponsoring spay/neuter campaigns as well as improving conditions in shelters. International animal aid does NOT always have to result in the import of animals.
A recent raid on a UK rescue apparently resulted in 66% of the foreign rescue dogs failing a rabies titer test and a similar number testing positive for distemper. This was a serious outbreak of disease which should have resulted in action being taken to prevent the continuation of diseased and non-vaccinated dogs entering the UK. Would the same have occurred had it been cows or sheep or would the point of export have been traced and an immediate export ban implemented?Eurotunnel disease risks:
I am awaiting a reply from Eurotunnel to my request for details of their health and safety procedures that allow safe use of the pet play area as a staging point for TRACE dogs to rest and exercise whilst maintaining a safe environment for the public to use for their pets. Pet owners who enjoy the convenience of travel on Eurotunnel should be able to do so and use the facilities at Calais without fear that their pets could catch a disease from a contaminated area. Numerous complaints have been made online of 20-30 rescue dogs running about the play area and some having diarrhea. With the number of dogs entering the UK carrying parvo and distemper, how do Eurotunnel ensure unsuspecting pet owners do not put their animals at risk when allowing them into the pet play area?
APHA disassociate themselves from this issue by stating “If this is happening in a non-UK territory then it would be the responsibility of the competent authority of that country to deal with.” Will this opinion change if a UK pet contracts parvo or distemper at the play area and on return to the UK causes a disease outbreak?Organised Crime and corruption:
It is widely accepted in the world of international rescue that many shelters and some transporters have links to local mafia, dogs are brought in for dog fighting and contraband is smuggled in with the animals.
Again, it is acknowledged and proven by those involved that the industry is reliant on corruption at many levels, from vets, border guards, trace license holders and DVS officials in Romania.
Shelter owners are paid by governments to catch, chip, vaccinate and spay/neuter dogs. The same dogs are then sold to “rescuers”, the “rescuers” then raise donations to spay/neuter, chip and send the dogs to the UK. This is one of many scenarios and one in which the shelter owner is paid twice for each dog. Many shelter owners also do their own traces and so profit further from each dog and of course profit is made from the selling of falsified passports and chips.
Finally, dogs imported as commercial imports from non EU countries are not being declared as such as thus the importers are avoiding import taxes.
This industry is estimated to be worth 300 million euro and it is clear that whilst people profit from the trade in rescue animals, the root problem will never be solved as in doing so you remove the commodity on which hundreds of people are profiting from.So what is the solution?
Animal welfare advocates in Croatia, Serbia and Bosnia have, for many years, vocalised their need for support and financial assistance to help change conditions in their home countries and aid legal action against local authorities and shelters not complying with current regulations. Serbia has a no kill policy for abandoned animals but have enforcement issues, is the solution to pay the shelter to take 10 dogs that can then be posted on Facebook to raise 4,000 euro? Those 10 places are quickly filled again and so a cycle is created. Give the same 4,000 euro to those in a position to take legal action against the shelter owners/managers and you have a chance of breaking the cycle.
Dogs Trust currently have a project in Bosnia, spay/neuter and educate, many would welcome similar projects and focus should be on raising funds for such programs instead of supporting criminal activity. Would our government allow websites and Facebook pages to fund raise and arrange transport to traffic illegal immigrants, of course not and yet this is exactly what is happening with cats and dogs and as a nation of animal lovers, many deem it acceptable.
If international rescue is to continue and pose no health threat to the UK, animals entering as commercial goods should be tested on entry for all transmittable diseases and health checked. They should be kept in a reception/quarantine facility until their documentation is validated and results confirm they comply with UK entry requirements. Titer testing alone is not a solution as these can be manipulated and chips can be cloned providing numerous dogs with the health history of one properly prepared dog. The lack of border control at entry points to the EU and the willingness of vets and officials to provide falsified documentation means that we can no longer trust our EU counterparts to ensure animals entering the UK on traces are properly prepared. The onus is on our authorities and border control to ensure minimum risk to the health of those in the UK
Rescue animals should only be imported by rescues registered as international rehomers and regulations and checks for such rescues should be implemented.
Animal welfare advocates in the countries mentioned make a very good case, in the UK we are killing tens of thousands of dogs each year yet taking 4-5 times this amount from other countries, why is this? They do not understand how a supposed animal lover would not give a home to a dog in their own country who has 7 days before it would be killed but instead, send hundreds of pounds to support an illegal trade that has resulted in the death of so many dogs. They want help solve the issue of stray dogs in their countries but feel helpless as the donations flooding into their countries are given to illegal traffickers instead of spaying/neutering and supporting local rehoming.
People in the UK have to consider how they would react to a report of 5 dogs dying at Dover having been left in a car for hours in 40 degree heat during illegal export to Romania. Or regular reports of dogs dying on route from Scotland to Dover and their deaths covered up because the exports were illegal. People would be calling for legal action against all involved and petitioning for changes to stop illegal exports. This is how many animal welfare advocates in the Balkans feel!
As a greater woman than I has previously said, the current system is not fit for purpose and APHA are aware of the extent of the illegal trafficking, the animal welfare concerns and the potential risk of disease to the UK.
I ask that this issue is given the recognition it requires and solutions are found and enacted swiftly to ensure better welfare for all animals, support for welfare organisations in the aforementioned countries and protection against disease for the UK instead of waiting for the first case of rabies or human cystic hydatid to be recorded in the UK.