Cases in 2013

Probe into ‘horrific’ fox killing

Irish Independent, 21/3/2013

AN ANIMAL welfare probe is under way after sick thugs tortured and hanged a young fox from a tree directly opposite a busy bus stop.  The gruesome discovery was made in Mayfield on Cork's northside by a group of youngsters curious about the large plastic bag draped from a chain off a large tree branch.  Onlookers were horrified to discover that a fox had been wrapped inside a large plastic bag and then hanged by its neck from a chain.

The Cork Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (CSPCA) was called to the scene and the fox was removed to determine if, as suspected, it had been tortured before being killed.  The CSPCA described the incident as one of the worst they have ever dealt with.  Inspector Vincent Cashman said they are determined to identify those responsible.  "This was a horrific act and we would appeal to anyone who suspects they know those responsible to contact either ourselves or the gardai," he said.

  A special appeal for information has also been launched via the CSPCA's Facebook page.



Irish Independent

MSN NEWS (http://www.news.msn.ie/puppy-throat-slashed-742050-Jan2013/), 5/1/13

A THREE MONTH OLD lurcher puppy had its throat slashed in a horrific attack in Portlaoise, Co Laois yesterday afternoon.  see more



Sligo man charged with keeping a pony tied up for so long the rope tore her face
The Jounal.ie, 21/6/2013
William ‘Jack’ Conway admitted to the offence at Sligo District Court and has until September to pay a fine or face prison.  see more



Dog lured to its death by University of Limerick students in drunken game

Limerick Leader, 2/6/2013

 DRUNK UL students lured a dog to its death in a sick game, says a local resident.  see more


Graphic images show horse’s mauled body in North Dublin

Jounal.ie, 16/5/2013

Two horses were killed in two separate incidents in the Darndale area of Dublin yesterday.  see more


Man who slaughtered goats in house convicted of cruelty
Irish Daily Mail, 05/07/2013

A man who admitted slaughtering goats in a house has been convicted of animal cruelty.  Rashi Kibaga, 23, used a knife to slaughter the four goats in accordance
with religious teaching, Tralee Circuit Criminal Court heard.  Gardaí received a complaint in April last year about "goat screaming and in pain" at a house in the town.  Officers and animal welfare inspectors went to the house and found four goat carcasses, two of which has been skinned, the court heard.
  Brian McInerney, defending said Kibaga was an asylum seeker from Somalia and a Muslim.  "For a devout Muslim to consume meat not killed in halal fashion would be a grave sin", Mr McInerney said.  What Kibaga did was customary in Somalia but he "accepts things are done differently in this country and he apologies," said the barrister.  Kibaga, of Killarney, Co. Kerry, who admitted animal cruelty, wronging using the house as an abattoir and failing to ensure the goats did not suffer.    Judge Carroll Moran suspended a one-year jail term.  The main charge is that he cruelly tortured or terrified and killed four goats, contrary to Section 1 Protection of Animals Act 1911.


Greyhounds shot and dumped in Limerick quarry after poor trials

Limerick Leader, 02/05/2013

THE OWNER of greyhounds that were shot and dumped in a quarry in County Limerick refused to tell gardai who killed the animals, a court has heard.  see more



Reward offered after seals decapitated

UTV News, 8/06/2013

A reward of €7,000 has been offered by two animal rights charities to anyone with information about the decapitation of two seal pups, whose heads were nailed to signs outside a seal sanctuary in Co Kerry.

  Gardaí are continuing to investigate the circumstances surrounding the gruesome plaques which appeared outside the Dingle Wildlife and Seal Sanctuary on Thursday morning.  The seal heads were displayed on boards along with the messages "RIP cull" and "RIP I am hungry", painted in blood-red block capitals.  "Despite this abhorrent act, we will continue to be there for wildlife in distress whenever we're needed and encourage people to continue to phone us if they find an animal in distress," a spokesman for the sanctuary said.  "We're in disbelief that we have to do so, but we'll be upgrading our security system and installing infrared cameras."

  News of what had happened sparked a flood of comments to the sanctuary's Facebook page, with many people angered and saddened by the display of cruelty.  "Everyone from the Dingle Wildlife and Seal Sanctuary would like to officially thank everyone for their support and their compassionate comments, in regards to the atrocious scene that we arrived to yesterday morning," the spokesman added.  Staff also thanked the Animal Rights Action Network and Sea Shepherd Conservation for putting up the reward money to help find those responsible.

  The seal sanctuary opened its doors in June 2010, with volunteers caring for animals in need right across the south-west of Ireland.  But some people, mainly fishermen, are opposed to seals being protected due to their impact on fishing stocks.

 

Pregnant terrier left in sealed basket leading to the death of eight puppies

Belfast Telegraph, 28/08/ 2013

see more



Hunters blamed for reintroducing wild boar herds in rural Clare

Irish Examiner, July 31/01/2013

Underground hunting rings are believed to be behind the reintroduction of herds of wild boar into rural County Clare. Three separate herds of wild boar have been discovered by authorities in forestry areas in the east and south of the county in recent weeks — with a total of 24 animals being captured from the wild. The most recent herd was discovered last week in the Sixmilebridge area where two adults and two boar piglets were discovered. Earlier this year, 15 animals were discovered in the Scariff area and a further five were discovered in a separate forestry location in east Clare. 

  According to Clare County Council’s ISPCA Dog Warden, Frankie Coote, the animals are likely being released on purpose so that their offspring can be hunted for sport. “These could have been released by people who took them in as pet and realised that they could not look after them, but I believe that they are being introduced by people who have an interest in coming back again and shooting the animals,” he said. “I think that this is an attempt to get them back into the big forestry areas in the county. If they did make it undetected, they would accumulate and they would run wild in no time. The people would then come back and hunt them.” 

  The animals discovered were relatively tame, however, their offspring would be wild and would present a danger to the public and to other wild animals.
  “We’ve had three incidents over the last few months in different parts of the county. These animals would have tusks and tough skin and the evidence suggests to us that someone is trying to reintroduce them in an organised way,” he said. “These can be very dangerous animals — especially if they turn wild. The difficulty is that they breed like hell and while these animals are relatively sedate, one sow could have 13 or 14 offspring, and these offspring would be wild. “If they were allowed to run wild it could quickly get out of control and it would present us with a major problem.” 

  Wild boar are similar in size and weight to pigs. They are generally stronger and better built, as they forage over large distances. They can be aggressive towards humans, especially when they have piglets. They attack people by using their girth and power to ram them — essentially head-butting them — before slashing upwards with their sharp tusks.



Ballydangan pups have lucky brush with the law!
Westmeath Independent, 02/09/2013
Two collie pups had a lucky brush with the law in Ballydangan recently when local Gardai came to their rescue. Gda Alma Delaney and Gda John Duggan responded to a call from a member of the public, who had heard the sound of pups crying coming from a fertilizer bag thrown in a drain in Ballydangan. The concerned individual had tried to help but could not reach the bag. Gardaí were able to retrieve the bag and found the two pups tied inside.
They very kindly brought them back to the station where they were given a bath, food and a warm bed in a cell for the night. The Gardaí then contacted
the ISPCA for assistance and the pups were brought to the National Animal Centre. When fully recovered from their ordeal they will be available for
rehoming.
  Inspector Karen Lyons who collected the puppies from the Garda Station commented “The pups are approximately 3 months old, they are very friendly
and seem to be well socialised. I find it impossible to understand why anyone could do such a thing to these 2 beautiful pup when there are options out there for people”.


Teen convicted over sulky race avoids jail

Irish Examiner, 13/04/2013

The youngest of the men convicted of involvement in a sulky race on the main Cork to Limerick road, which became a YouTube sensation, avoided jail yesterday for his part in the dangerous escapade.

  Judge Olann Kelleher recalled at Cork District Court that a number of the participants in the race involving horse-drawn sulky cars on the dual carriageway had been jailed. However, the judge said that he was taking into consideration the fact that James Stokes was only 17 at the time of the event. Judge Kelleher fined Stokes €250 on a charge of dangerous driving. Stokes, now aged 18, from St Anthony’s Park halting site in Knocknaheeny, Cork, was also put on a probation bond for nine months on condition that he would comply with the conditions imposed on him by the probation service and not come to the attention of gardaí.

  The offence was committed on May 5, 2012, on the main Cork-Mallow road, the N20, near Ballygibbon, Blarney, Co Cork. The incident was recorded on film by one of several dozen onlookers who were following the race in a convoy of cars and vans. Clips of the incident, posted on YouTube, have been viewed more than 500,000 times.



Nag Hack Horror
Irish Sun, 28/10/2013

A pony was left with a deep wound after 'a sadistic monster... used back street surgery' in a bid to remove a micro-chip says a leading horse charity. The female grey nag was rescued from the Cooley Mountains in Co. Louth after a member of the public saw she was injured. Elaine Duffy of Holly's Horse Haven charity in Omeath stormed: "It was an inhumane horror where monsters simply mutilated a poor defenceless creature."  A microchip was found on scanning in a different spot on the pony's neck. However, as it is unregistered no owner can be traced.


Warning: Graphic content - Athlone SPCA appeals for witnesses after dog's head blown off

Independent.ie, 02/12/2013

Athlone SPCA has appealed for information following the discovery of a dog which was shot in the head in the town.  see more



Cock-fighting investigation: Birds seized in County Fermanagh

BBC News (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-northern-ireland-25323551), 10/12/2013

Cock-fighting is a practice that has been illegal for almost 200 years.

A number of birds have been seized in County Fermanagh as part of an investigation into illegal cockfighting. The police operation into alleged animal cruelty took place at three locations. There were no arrests and police said enquiries are continuing. At one of the properties, roosters had been tied by the leg to blue plastic barrels. A vet said the birds were healthy and uninjured, although the combs on their heads had been removed. Removing the combs, or dubbing, is believed to be common practice in birds bred for fighting.

Cruelty

Earlier this year the BBC reported on a two-year USPCA investigation into illegal cock-fights, which take place regularly at venues on both sides of the Irish border. At one site, about 60 people, some of them children, were gathered around a makeshift ring in County Monaghan about five miles from the border with Middletown in County Armagh. On another occasion, both birds seemed to survive. In an earlier encounter one of the birds was lifted, apparently lifeless, from the ring. These big events in the cock-fighting world are known as derbies.

  Police said they are working in partnership with other agencies to investigate suspected fighting offences leading to possible animal cruelty.  Anyone with concerns or information in relation to animal cruelty for farmed animals has been asked to contact the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD).

  Offences for non-farmed animals for example, domestic pets such as cats, dogs, horses and donkeys should be reported to the animal welfare officer in local councils.  Any suspected organised fighting offences should be reported to the police.



Athlone SPCA says dogs dumped weekly on motorway

Shannonside FM, 02/12/2013

The Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Athlone says that animals are being dumped on a daily basis in the area. The group has made an appeal for witnesses after a husky dog was shot 4 times over the weekend. The dead animal was discovered by a passer-by on the road in the popular Glynwood Bog area on Sunday afternoon.

  Chairperson of the SPCA Billy Gallagher says the incident has been handed over to the Gardai but they fear that the animal was dumped after failed attempts to sell the dog. Mr. Gallagher says that while this case is extreme people are dumping animals along the motorway on a weekly basis: Billy Gallagher is appealing for people to contact the Gardai if they have further information.  He’s reminding people that it is an offence to abandon and of course shoot an animal except in some circumstances where farmers are permitted to do so.



Five men jailed for illegal horse racing on public road - VIDEO

IrishCentral, 10/02/2013

A judge in Cork has sent five men to jail for five months for dangerous driving after a sulky race on the Cork to Mallow road last May.  see more



Horse slaughter house operations suspended in Offaly

Breaking news.ie, 14/03/2013

It has been revealed that one of two plants that slaughter horses here has been suspended from operations following a Department of Agriculture inspection last Friday.

  Officials who visited Ossory Meats in Offaly found problems with 25 horses.

  These included issues with the horse markings being different to those noted on their passports and some of those presented as being yearlings being much older.

  An interim report on the mislabelling of meat says the incident is extraordinary, particularly the brazenness in attempting to have these animals slaughtered at a time when controls had been enhanced.

  Minister for Agriculture Simon Coveney said: "I should firstly express my concern at the incident which occurred only last Friday in Ossory Meats.

  "What gave rise to the incident at Ossory Meats and the subsuquent suspension of the plant is totally unacceptable and will be pursued with full vigour



Birdbrained: Video shows man tying and throwing live pigeons in air to train hunting dogs

Irish Mirror, 11/06/2013

This sickening video shows a trainer tying up live pigeons to teach hunting dogs.

  In a disturbing video posted on a dog training website, instructor Paul David Toal can be seen tying the birds’ legs with elastic and then tossing them into the air.

  The animals struggle to fly before dropping to the ground and are fetched by gun dogs.

  After being brought back to Mr Toal, the birds are tied up again and the act is repeated.

  Mr Toal, the owner of the Co Leitrim-based Altiquin Labradors, denied the birds suffered harm.

  He said: “Over three years ago, we were involved in using live birds to train our dogs.

  “The birds were neither injured nor killed. We ceased this practice over three years ago on realising this method of training had become outmoded and surpassed.”

But Mr Toal’s altiquinlabradors.com website shows footage uploaded as recently as two years ago, in July 2011, in which a live bird can be seen being hurled up and retrieved by a dog.

  Mr Toal added: “We did not know at that time this practice transgressed the law. I am now training my dogs in full compliance with the law.

  “We would like to apologise for any distress we may have caused.”

Animal Rights Action Network’s John Carmody believes cases such as this are common due to the disregard shown to anti-cruelty legislation.

  He said: “We’re disgusted this is going on. It goes to show people don’t care for our animal welfare laws.

  “It’s worrying because from what we have been told, this practice is rampant throughout the country.

  “We get countless emails and complaints about this kind of cruelty but until our laws are taken seriously, people aren’t going to stop.

  “I hope the media highlight this issue and people see animal cruelty as a very serious offence.

  “Maybe those who are responsible for these sickening acts might think twice because they’ll know groups like ourselves will be on their case and looking to have them prosecuted.”

The organisation has welcomed the introduction of last month’s Animal Welfare Bill.

  Mr Carmody added: “This law gives heavier jail sentences and tougher fines for acts like this.”



Man fined €800 after greyhounds found dead

Irish Examiner, 26/04/2013

A man handed over two greyhounds to a third party who shot them in the head, after they showed no promise of chasing hares, a court heard yesterday.

  Avoiding paying a vet €80 to have each dog humanely put down by injection, John Corkery gave the animals to a man who shot them.

  The two dogs were found, along with four other greyhounds rotting in a disused quarry at Ballyagran, Co Limerick, on Apr 10, 2012.

  Corkery, aged 53, a well-known greyhound trainer, had been rearing the dogs for coursing competitions and track racing events.

  The owners of the remaining four dead dogs found are unknown.

I  nspector Eamon O’Neill told Newcastle West District Court the case was “the first of its kind” to be brought before court after legislation, under the Welfare of Greyhounds Act was introduced in Nov 2011.

  Corkery, of Love Lane, Charleville, Co Cork, pleaded guilty to one count of forging his son’s name as the registered owner of a greyhound Rathluirc Sham.

  He also pleaded guilty to failing to notify the Irish Coursing Board of the transfer of ownership of Kildangan Dawn.

  Judge Mary Larkin noted that, despite his guilty pleas, Corkery would not identity the person who shot the two dogs.

  Solicitor Denis Linehan said: “From the outset, he put his hands up to this.”

  Inspector O’Neill agreed, without the pleas of guilt, it would have been “difficult” for gardaí to secure a prosecution.

  “It is the inhumane manner in which the dogs were put down that gives the gravest offence,” Judge Larkin said. She fined Mr Corkery €300 for the forgery charge and €500 for the failing to notify transfer of ownership offence.

  The Irish Greyhound Board last night said it welcomed the “successful prosecution”.

  “The IGB have worked with the gardaí in bringing about this successful prosecution to ensure the full facts of the case were investigated. It is hoped that today’s prosecution will act as a deterrent and ensure that all owners and trainers will be compliant with the act in the future,” it said.

IGB welfare manager Barry Coleman added: “The IGB condemns all acts of neglect towards greyhounds and encourages, at all times, responsible ownership practices. This first ever prosecution under the Welfare of Greyhounds Act 2011, which the IGB helped develop, sets a strong precedent for the future and should further reinforce our tough stance against any potential transgressors.”



Family distraught after pet attacked and killed by pack of hunt hounds

Isabelle, a hypoallergenic family dog, died after being attacked by hounds that were part of a hunt organised by the ‘Bray Harriers’ club.

Journal.ie,  01/12/2013

A FAMILY IN Ashford, Co Wicklow say they’ve been left shocked after their pet dog was attacked by a pack of hunting hounds yesterday afternoon.

  It happened at around 4pm when a hunt by the Bray Harriers club was taking place in the area. The family pet, a hypoallergenic dog named ‘Isabelle’ died from her injuries.

  Club Secretary with Bray Harriers David Power confirmed that the incident happened, but said he had no further details and wasn’t at the scene himself.

  “The dogs came in in two packs, one on either side of the house,” Isabelle’s owner Kayleigh told TheJournal.ie.

  “They were totally out of control. They chased her until they caught her and basically savaged her.”

Kayleigh said that her brother and her father, who is in his 50s, tried to separate the animals, along with members of the hunting party.

  Once the hounds were called off, the wounded dog ran into a nearby field. She was brought back to the house by one of the hunters. A vet who was with the hunting party briefly tended to her, but she died from from her injuries inside the family home.

  “There were about four riders on horses I think. Another two horses without riders,” Kayleigh said.

  “It was chaos. They were basically trespassing on our property.

Kayleigh, who has started a Facebook campaign calling for stricter regulation of hunting, says residents weren’t informed by the club that the hunt would be taking place in the area this weekend.

  On the Bray Harriers website, a hunt listed for yesterday is still labelled this afternoon as ‘TBC’ and no location is given.

  “That’s the most shocking part. No-one was aware of it. That dogs like this can run uncontrolled on roads and on private property is just incredible.”

Kayleigh’s Facebook page calls for the “shocking and barbaric sport” to be more strictly regulated, and for tough new laws to be introduced to protect people and other animals.

  In the short-term, she said, the Bray Harriers and clubs like them should inform communities in areas where they plan to hold meetings.

  She said that two of the riders had spoken to the family in the aftermath of the incident, apologised, and offered compensation for what had happened.

  “What can you say though? It won’t bring Isabelle back.”

She said they told her they would be back in contact today, but as of this afternoon, the family hadn’t heard anything.

  According to its website, Bray Harriers have around 100 members who are “mostly from the south Dublin and north Wicklow areas” and they carry out hunts each Wednesday and Saturday from October until March.

  They also held a meet last Wednesday, while last weekend they were in the Roundwood area.



Horse beaten to death in Wicklow Town

WicklowNews.net, 09/12/2013

In an act of sheer barbarism, a horse was kicked and beaten to death by a group of men after being thrown from its horsebox yesterday evening in Wicklow Town.

  According to eyewitness reports, a group of men arrived in the Hillview estate, Ballyguile at around 4.30pm with a horsebox in tow and attempted to unload the animal onto the green area for grazing.

  When the horse refused to walk out down the ramp, the men opened the back doors of the horsebox and accelerated sharply, causing the horse to tumble out into the street.

  Witnesses told WicklowNews.net that the horse was unable to stand up and was then beaten by the group of men.

  A vet was called to the scene at around 6.30pm and the horse was then put to sleep.

  More than 12 hours later, the carcass of the horse was still lying in the street covered with a sheet which had been placed over it by residents. According to one witness the horse’s foal was standing over it, nuzzling the remains.

  Cantor Equine, a Dublin-based company used for horse seizures, has been tasked with the removal of the remains and the cost will be met jointly by Wicklow County Council and Wicklow Town Council.

  Wicklow Town Councillor Pat Kavanagh said she feared that this would not be the last incident of its kind as long as microchipping laws remain unenforced.

  Cllr Kavanagh was critical of the Wicklow County Council operation last week that saw 63 horses removed from estate, saying that “money could have been better spent” on initiatives to educate horse owners in the area so that animals kept in the field were microchipped and properly cared for.

  “My concern now is that we are going to have horses from all over the country brought to Wicklow and this is going to be an ongoing problem. Are we going to have people coming to Wicklow to dump their horses as a free way to get rid of them?”

Eight horses remain on the estate and have received care from the Irish Horse Welfare Trust.

  Gardai in Wicklow Town are investigating the incident and anyone with any information is asked to contact them on 0404-60140.



Horse smuggler talks about drugging animals before illegal slaughter

Journal.ie, 06/03/2013

THE HORSEMEAT SCANDAL continues to grow legs with fresh revelations that a smuggling conspiracy has been running for years across Ireland and the UK.

BBC Northern Ireland’s Spotlightprogramme uncovered details about the criminal activity and reporter Jennifer O’Leary spoke with one man who claimed to be involved in a gang.

  The activities led to horsemeat that was never fit for human consumption entering the food chain. One of the smuggling routes is believed to have started in Ireland but it is still unclear where all this horsemeat has landed.

  The animals were exported through Belfast.

  The insider told the BBC that sellers knew why their horses were being bought.

  “They did know they were going to a factory but they thought they were going for dog food.”

He also revealed that forged documentation, bogus microchips and stimulating drugs were used in the process.

  Those involved would insert bogus microchips under the skin of the horses, according to the gang member. Many of the creatures were also given drugs to make them appear healthier.

  “Some of them weren’t in the best condition,” he said. “But to stimulate them and get them on their feet again, you’d give them certain cortisone and bute.

  “If a horse had a heartbeat and could walk, he would stand up on the lorry until he got to England.”

Some of the horses were delivered to the Redline Abattoir in Chesire which is being investigated by the Food Standards Agency over “horse passport matters”.

  The firm’s parent group say they have never knowingly slaughtered an animal with false documentation. It also insists that hundreds of horses have been turned away from the abattoir because of inadequate passports.


Passport Database

Meanwhile, the suggestion of a national passport database in Ireland has been met with some scepticism by those in the industry.

  Speaking to Morning Ireland, the director of one of the bodies approved to issue horse passports said that although the plan is worthwhile, it is also incomplete.

  Tom Reed of Irish Warmblood Stud said, “What is being proposed is a band-aid so the Department can look like it is doing something.”

  He believes there is an opportunity now – because of the ongoing food industry crisis – to take steps that would put Ireland in the lead within the EU on this issue. And to ensure a stable, transparent and safe food chain.

  The organisation would like to see just one body issue one type of passport for horses which would include an image of the animal. It has also called for bute audits across the industry.

  The Irish Cattle and Sheep Association (ICSA) has urged the authorities to seek prosecutions over the horsemeat controversy.

  President Eddie Punch said that processors had “obviously made mistakes” but also pointed blame towards retailers. 

“Supermarkets say they are shocked…yet surely they didn’t believe they could sell burgers for the cheap price they were selling them for?”



Little Thor suffers in ‘one of the most appalling cases of animal cruelty’

Irish Examiner, 03/04/2013

Vets fear this little dog suffered devastating injuries after being used as bait in an illegal dog fight.  see more

 


Horse beaten to death in Wicklow Town

Wicklow News.net, 09/12/2013

In an act of sheer barbarism, a horse was kicked and beaten to death by a group of men after being thrown from its horsebox yesterday evening in Wicklow Town.

  According to eyewitness reports, a group of men arrived in the Hillview estate, Ballyguile at around 4.30pm with a horsebox in tow and attempted to unload the animal onto the green area for grazing.

  When the horse refused to walk out down the ramp, the men opened the back doors of the horsebox and accelerated sharply, causing the horse to tumble out into the street.

  Witnesses told WicklowNews.net that the horse was unable to stand up and was then beaten by the group of men.

  A vet was called to the scene at around 6.30pm and the horse was then put to sleep.

  More than 12 hours later, the carcass of the horse was still lying in the street covered with a sheet which had been placed over it by residents. According to one witness the horse’s foal was standing over it, nuzzling the remains.

  Cantor Equine, a Dublin-based company used for horse seizures, has been tasked with the removal of the remains and the cost will be met jointly by Wicklow County Council and Wicklow Town Council.

  Wicklow Town Councillor Pat Kavanagh said she feared that this would not be the last incident of its kind as long as microchipping laws remain unenforced.

  Cllr Kavanagh was critical of the Wicklow County Council operation last week that saw 63 horses removed from estate, saying that “money could have been better spent” on initiatives to educate horse owners in the area so that animals kept in the field were microchipped and properly cared for.

  “My concern now is that we are going to have horses from all over the country brought to Wicklow and this is going to be an ongoing problem. Are we going to have people coming to Wicklow to dump their horses as a free way to get rid of them?”

Eight horses remain on the estate and have received care from the Irish Horse Welfare Trust.

Gardai in Wicklow Town are investigating the incident and anyone with any information is asked to contact them on 0404-60140.



Cock-fighting investigation: Birds seized in County Fermanagh

BBC, 10/12/2013

A number of birds have been seized in County Fermanagh as part of an investigation into illegal cockfighting.

  The police operation into alleged animal cruelty took place at three locations.

  There were no arrests and police said enquiries are continuing.

  At one of the properties, roosters had been tied by the leg to blue plastic barrels.

  A vet said the birds were healthy and uninjured, although the combs on their heads had been removed.

  Removing the combs, or dubbing, is believed to be common practice in birds bred for fighting.


Cruelty

Earlier this year the BBC reported on a two-year USPCA investigation into illegal cock-fights, which take place regularly at venues on both sides of the Irish border.

  At one site, about 60 people, some of them children, were gathered around a makeshift ring in County Monaghan about five miles from the border with Middletown in County Armagh.

  On another occasion, both birds seemed to survive. In an earlier encounter one of the birds was lifted, apparently lifeless, from the ring.

  These big events in the cock-fighting world are known as derbies.

  Police said they are working in partnership with other agencies to investigate suspected fighting offences leading to possible animal cruelty.

  Anyone with concerns or information in relation to animal cruelty for farmed animals has been asked to contact the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (DARD).

  Offences for non-farmed animals for example, domestic pets such as cats, dogs, horses and donkeys should be reported to the animal welfare officer in local councils.

Any suspected organised fighting offences should be reported to the police.



Gardaí investigating complaint about ‘almost dead’ hares released back into wildThe Department of Arts Heritage and the Gaeltacht has also raised the matter and requested that hares be kept until they have fully recovered.

Journal.ie, 03/06/2013

GARDAÍ IN WEXFORD are investigating a complaint made by an animal rights group after it emerged that a number of hares that were used at a hare coursing meeting were released back into the wild in a very poor condition.

  A report by a conservation ranger for the National Parks and Wildlife Service released to the Irish Council Against Blood Sports and seen byTheJournal.ie, reveal that six hares released back into the wild in conditions “ranging from poor to almost dead”.

  Three were reported to have injuries so serious they couldn’t move and another “limped off”. One hare had also died by the completion of 2012 coursing in the area.

  The council against blood sports has now lodged a complaint with gardaí claiming that the release of animals that are sick or injured is in breach of the Protection of Animals Act.

  “We contend that releasing these sick and/or injured hares into the wild without treating them for their injuries or euthanising them on humanatarian grounds constitutes a breack of the 1911 Protection of Animals Act,” the complaint reads.

The Irish Wildlife Trust has previously warned about the damaging effects of hare coursing and campaigns officer Padraic Fogarty explained this week that there is evidence to show that “hare suffer a kind of trauma after being released back into the wild” when they’ve been used in coursing.

  “After that we don’t know whether it will affect their survival but they are more likely to be eaten by a fox if they’re traumatised,” he said.

  Fogarty said that the trust, which has called for alternatives to fox hunting and hare coursing to be implemented, was disappointed that an outright ban on the sport was “not even up for serious discussion” by the government.

  In response to a query from TheJournal.ie, the Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht confirmed that the conservation ranger in Wexford had identified some hares released in a state of poor health.

  “The department raised this matter with the Irish Coursing Club earlier this month and suggested that hares be kept until they have fully recovered and are healthy before being released into the wild,” it said. “The views of the Irish Coursing Club were sought on this event.”

  The department said that just over half of all coursing meetings were attended by rangers, an increase on previous years. An average of 98 per cent of the hares captured for hare coursing have been returned to the wild over the past four hare coursing seasons and the department said that this is the percentage released in the 2012/2013 season.

  The Irish Coursing Club did not return calls requesting comment on the issue.



Two puppies beaten and thrown over 10-foot wall in PortlaoiseThe two eight-week-old pups had been abandoned behind the high wall for about four days, leaving them severely dehydrated.

Journal.ie, 05/06/2013

TWO EIGHT-WEEK-OLD puppies are recovering at a veterinary surgery in Co Laois after they were discovered on Monday close to death in a housing estate in Portlaoise.

  The two young pups were found by local residents and taken to the vets by volunteers from the charity Cara Rescue Dogs.

  Speaking to TheJournal.ie, Lorraine McEvoy of Cara Rescue said that they were both suffering from dehydration, having been left in the sun with no water for a long period of time.

  “The little girl [above], it looks like her face has been chewed at by wildlife, maybe a rat or a possibly a crow pecked away at her while she was lying there,” she said. “She’s also blind and we don’t know if that’s because of the trauma or something else but she has bruising around her eye, lots of burst blood vessels.”

  “The boy was crying, in a lot of pain and went unconscious on the way over to the vets so the volunteer thought he was dead, I mean they’re both just in tatters.”

She said the puppies, named Alfie and Lexi, could hardly walk and when they did it was “just in small circles”. The vet has also said that Lexi, the female, has a heart murmur which could significantly shorten her life span.

  It is thought that a local resident owned the pups and no longer wanted them so disposed of them behind the high wall in a ditch area that leads to a railway track. McEvoy said she thinks they had been there for about four days.

  She said that it is thought that the dogs were beaten before being abandoned and has been told by the vet that Alfie, the male pup [pictured above], “screams when they go to pick him up and flinches like he doesn’t want to be touched”.

Despite this, and Lexi’s heart condition, McEvoy said the charity will find them a home and has already arranged a foster placement for them.

  “I’ll find them a home, even the little girl,” she said. “If she can have any quality of life and enjoy a cuddle, enjoy her food, we’ll give her roast chicken for the rest of her life but we’re going to save her.”

One thing is for sure, this duo is not likely to be separated as Lexi has taken to following her brother around everywhere, even though she can’t see him.

“This was just blatent cruelty that what drives me mad is that there’s just no reason for it”, McEvoy added.



140 dogs saved in biggest canine rescue in State history.
Journal.ie, 12/02/2013
More than 140 dogs were rescued from a property in rural Leitrim, where they were living “in deplorable conditions”.
see more



Man fined €800 after greyhounds found dead

Irish Examiner, 26/04/2013

A man handed over two greyhounds to a third party who shot them in the head, after they showed no promise of chasing hares, a court heard yesterday.

  Avoiding paying a vet €80 to have each dog humanely put down by injection, John Corkery gave the animals to a man who shot them.

  The two dogs were found, along with four other greyhounds rotting in a disused quarry at Ballyagran, Co Limerick, on Apr 10, 2012.

  Corkery, aged 53, a well-known greyhound trainer, had been rearing the dogs for coursing competitions and track racing events.

  The owners of the remaining four dead dogs found are unknown.

  Inspector Eamon O’Neill told Newcastle West District Court the case was “the first of its kind” to be brought before court after legislation, under the Welfare of Greyhounds Act was introduced in Nov 2011.

  Corkery, of Love Lane, Charleville, Co Cork, pleaded guilty to one count of forging his son’s name as the registered owner of a greyhound Rathluirc Sham.

  He also pleaded guilty to failing to notify the Irish Coursing Board of the transfer of ownership of Kildangan Dawn.

  Judge Mary Larkin noted that, despite his guilty pleas, Corkery would not identity the person who shot the two dogs.

  Solicitor Denis Linehan said: “From the outset, he put his hands up to this.”

  Inspector O’Neill agreed, without the pleas of guilt, it would have been “difficult” for gardaí to secure a prosecution.

“It is the inhumane manner in which the dogs were put down that gives the gravest offence,” Judge Larkin said. She fined Mr Corkery €300 for the forgery charge and €500 for the failing to notify transfer of ownership offence.

The Irish Greyhound Board last night said it welcomed the “successful prosecution”.

“The IGB have worked with the gardaí in bringing about this successful prosecution to ensure the full facts of the case were investigated. It is hoped that today’s prosecution will act as a deterrent and ensure that all owners and trainers

will be compliant with the act in the future,” it said.

IGB welfare manager Barry Coleman added: “The IGB condemns all acts of neglect towards greyhounds and encourages, at all times, responsible ownership practices. This first ever prosecution under the Welfare of Greyhounds Act 2011, which   the IGB helped develop, sets a strong precedent for the future and should further reinforce our tough stance against any potential transgressors.”



Cork man fined for forging son's name

Irish Examiner, 25/04/2013

A Cork man has been fined €800 after pleading guilty to charges in connection with the shooting of greyhounds last year.

  In what was the first case of its type in the country, John Corkery pleaded guilty to forging his son's name as the registered owner of a greyhound.

  The 53-year old from Love Lane, Charleville, also pleaded guilty to failing to notify the Irish Coursing Board of a transfer of ownership in relation to a greyhound.

  The dogs were two of four found shot in the head in a disused quarry in Co Limerick in April last year.

  Mr Corkery told Gardaí he handed over the two dogs to a third party to dispose of after they showed no promise in chasing hares.



Garda rejects animal charity’s claim that animal was burnt alive in Dublin

Irish Times, 29/11/2013

The Dublin Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (DPSCA) has insisted that the horse whose charred remains were found in Tallaght yesterday was burned alive.

  The gardaí say they are satisfied from their investigations that the mare was already dead when petrol was poured on her carcass and it was burned.

  However, DSPCA spokeswoman Gillian Bird said it was in “no doubt” that the animal was alive when she was set on fire.

  “We have received information from eyewitnesses and people who have spoken to eyewitnesses who say this horse was alive when she was set on fire, though we do not know what state she was in,” she said.

  “We have no evidence that she was not alive. We will have more information about this next week.”

The incident happened on a patch of grass off the R136 between CityWest and Tallaght in the early hours of Thursday morning.

Ms Bird has insisted the original reports that the animal was alive came from the Garda station in Tallaght and subsequent information backed that up.

  She also said new information had come to light regarding the fate of the mare before she died.

  She had recently weaned a foal and appeared to be sick prior to the incident, possibly suffering from mastitis.

  According to reports given to the DSPCA, she was tied to a lamp post and was seen choking on the rope before being removed shortly before her death.   Another report tells of seeing a number of youths pouring a bottle of vodka down the mare’s throat.

  “Currently these reports are unverified but we will be following them up to complete the case file,” she added.

The DSPCA feels the claim the animal was dead prior to the incident has been given by witnesses to the gardaí in the hope that other horses will not be removed by the local authorities in response to the burning.

  The incident was described by the animal charity yesterday as a “deeply sinister development” and caused widespread outrage.

  A spokesman for the Garda press office said the abandoned horse was dead before its remains were set alight.

  The spokesman said: “It has been established through investigations that the horse was already dead before the carcass was burned and initially we did not know this. We in the Garda press office never stated that the horse was burned alive.”

  Ms Bird said they had encountered another incident of cruelty to a horse when a miniature Marabella miniature horse was rescued by a passer-by on Wednesday.

  Local children in Tallaght had tied a rope around his lower jaw and lip and made him drag a wooden pallet in front of him.

  The passer-by bought the pony for €100 and stopped a van driver who took the animal back to his house. The DSPCA then came and collected the Marabella horse who has bruising to his mouth but is otherwise unharmed.

  In a separate incident, some 15 of the horses that were found grazing illegally in Cork have been put down.

  The horses were rounded up last week by gardaí in a crackdown on unwanted animals grazing on both public and private lands. The horses belonged to members of the travelling community.

  A total of 85 across four sites in the Gurranabraher, Hollyhill, Knocknaheeny and Nash’s Boreen area of Cork’s northside were impounded and kept in a secure location pending them being claimed by their owners.

  Following an appeal, 30 were reclaimed by their owners and 40 were rescued for rehoming.

  The 15 who were not suitable for rehoming were enthanased, according toDanny Holmes, the vet for the charity Animal Heaven Animal Rescue, which helped to rescue the animals.

  The horses are currently in the charity’s rescue centre in Co Kerry.

  Mr Holmes said many of the problems have arisen because the Department of Agriculture brought in regulations last year that owners must register their equine premises.

  “There are unwanted horses. Last year those unwanted horses were finding their way into the food chain illegally and this year they are not,” he said.



Dog found under a pile of rubbish with his skull smashed is on the mend
The vet said the hunting dog, Fionn, had received a severe blunt force trauma to the head.

The Journal.ie, 24/12/2013

http://www.thejournal.ie/fionn-dog-found-under-rubbish-cork-1236391-Dec2013/

THE CORK DOG Action Welfare Group (CDAWG) is caring for a dog that was left to die in the woods last week.

  The dog, who the welfare group called Fionn, was found by someone out walking in the woods.

  He was lying in a spot where people dump rubbish and the vet who examined him said he had suffered a severe blow to the head. There were fears that Fionn might not be able to walk or that he may die, but after receiving great care at the shelter, he is said to be on the mend.

  Speaking to TheJournal.ie, Margaret Twohig of CDAWG said it is believed that Fionn was in the ownership of a hunting club. She said that ownership of Fionn has been transferred to the the Dog Action Welfare Group.

  She added that the person who owned Fionn has been identified and she has been told by the club the owner of Fionn has been expelled from the club.


Animal Rights

  “The keeper of Fionn also had other hounds in his care and we have been told that these dogs have been removed from the premises,” she said.

  “We wanted a commitment from the group that his dogs would be removed,” she said.

  When Fionn was found she said he was barely alive and was cold to the touch. “He was covered in cuts and pressure sores, a mere skeleton, unable to move. It looked like he had been put there, in amongst the rubbish and left to die. The rain pouring down on his poor body,” she said.

  The group called him Fionn after the legendary Celtic hero Fionn Mac Cumhail. They said it was the perfect name for him, as he was a great Irish warrior who fought and won many battles and had a special love for hounds.

  X-rays revealed that he has a fractured skull due to a blunt force trauma to the head and they feared that he would not survive. However, in what Twohig describes as a “Christmas miracle” he was standing and walking yesterday.

  “The latest update from the vet is that Fionn is on the mend,” said Twohig. The vet said that looking at Fionn when he came in he did not think he was going to make it. “With a fractured skull, there was a possibility of brain damage or that he could have been paralysed, but it is great that he is up walking today,” she said.

  Since the group posted Fionn’s story on Facebook, Twohig said they have been inundated with messages and support for Fionn from all over the world.

  “We have received messages from the UK, Germany and South Africa, all wishing him well and asking for updates. An animal welfare group in Sweden is even holding a fundraiser for him,” she said, adding that she has never seen such a great public reaction to one story. “He really has touched people’s hearts,” she said.

  She said that many people have offered Fionn a home but that they had to wait and see how he gets on over the Christmas.

  While she said that Fionn’s story had obviously resonated with people, she said that they receive many calls about abandoned hounds.

  She said that animal welfare rights “don’t mean much in this country” adding that there are people in power that can strengthen the laws.


Worst time for animal cruelty

  She also said that while she has never had such an overwhelming reaction to Fionn’s story, that this is one of the worst times she has witnessed in animal cruelty, stating that while there are a lot of kind people out there, some people seem to have become “indifferent” to animals.

  She urged people, especially at this time of year, to think about what it means to care for an animal, adding that puppies are not just for Christmas, they deserve to be loved, just like Fionn did, she said.

  Cork Dog Action Welfare Group is a voluntary group and relies on donations. To find out more about the group please click here.



The men were stopped by gardaí on the N4 shortly after the shooting.

The Journal.ie, 17/12/2013

FIVE MEN HAVE been released without charge after a horse was shot dead in Kildare yesterday afternoon.

  The men were stopped in their van by gardaí on the N4 close to the Celbridge interchange and were arrested for questioning.  A  gun was also recovered.

  The horse was shot dead in a field outside Kilcock, on the Clane road.

  Mary Lawlor from the Kildare and West Wicklow Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, told TheJournal.ie that: It’s horrific what’s happening out there at the moment. I think the cruelty element to horses is definitely getting worse.

  The Irish Independent reports that the shooting is part of an ongoing feud between two gangs in the district and that this is the second horse to be shot over the feud.

A file is being prepared for the DPP.



A vet had to be called to the scene to put the animal down.

The Journal.ie, 09/12/2013

A HORSE WAS discovered yesterday in the Hillview estate, Ballyguile in Wicklow with two broken legs which is believed to be as a result of animal abuse.

  The horse was discovered at about 4pm yesterday but had to be euthanised by a vet. There are conflicting reports circulating that the horse was beaten by a group of people, while other reports suggest the horse refused to leave the horse box, and when a group of men accelerated the vehicle to force him out, the horse tumbled out of the trailer and sustained the injuries.


Appeal

Gardaí said they are currently investigating the incident and are asking anyone with any information to come forward. They confirmed that the horse did receive two serious injuries to two of its legs and had to be put down as a result of the injuries.

  Speaking to TheJournal.ie Wicklow Town Councillor Garrett O’Reilly said it was “simply not acceptable,” adding that these occurrences were becoming more and more common and that he thought people were afraid to come forward with information.

  He said people could come to him with any information about the death of the horse and he would pass it on to the authorities. He said he felt the council had to look at a long term solution for the management of horses in Wicklow.


Horses

“Last week, 63 horses were rounded up by the council, in an operation that involved more than 20 gardaí. The sheer cost of an operation like that is just not sustainable,” he said.

  He said he believed the majority of those horses that are brought to a pound are later put down. “There is enough council land or land that is in NAMA that could be used by these horses. We need a long term solution for these horses, so that cruelty like this can’t happen again,” he said.

  Eight horses remain in Hillview estate and have received care from the Irish Horse Welfare Trust.

  Well-known vet Pete Wedderburn said on his Facebook Page today:

  More animal cruelty, this time in Wicklow Town, involving a horse which was euthanised by a vet yesterday after being found in trouble. We all need to act together, gathering evidence for prosecutions, to stop episodes like this in the future.



Gardaí are investigating the slaughter of the abandoned horse which happened in the Fettercairn area of Tallaght.

The journal.ie, 28/11/2013

A HORSE HAS died from extensive injuries after it was doused with petrol and set alight in Dublin last night.

  The Dublin Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (DSPCA) has expressed outright condemnation at the slaughter of the horse which is believed to have been abandoned.

  The DSPCA was notified of the incident by gardaí this morning and accompanied gardaí to the site which is in a field by the road adjacent to the Luas in Tallaght. The area in Fettercairn is described as being close to a housing estate.

  The DSPCA inspectors at the scene said that it was evident that the horse had been alive when it was set alight and that a significant amount of petrol would have had to be used.

  The remnants of the fire have not yet been removed but the DSPCA say that it is expected the council will do so very soon.

  The charity say that this is one of the most horrific incidents their inspectors have ever witnessed.

  Five other horses in the vicinity were moved to safety by agents of the local authority with gardaí assistance.

  The DSPCA’s CEO Brian Gillen said that the charity is extremely concerned with what it calls this “deeply sinister development”:

  The horrendous death that this horse endured is unimaginable. Whilst we encounter many horrific cruelty and neglect cases with regard to abandoned horses, we have never seen such levels of deliberate and depraved cruelty.

  Gillen added that this “awful incident” reinforces the plight of abandoned horses in Dublin. “We are asking all the local authorities to take immediate steps to put a stop to this barbaric behaviour with the removal of abandoned horses to safekeeping”, he said.

  The DSPCA have uploaded a picture to their Facebook page of the scene following the fire but we advise that the image may be distressing to some readers. The charity say the picture is one of the least disturbing images they took of the scene.

  Gardaí confirmed that investigations into the incident are taking place but no arrests have been made.



The puppy was found at a popular dog-walking spot with four shotgun shells on its body.

The Journal.ie, 02/12/2013

AN ANIMAL WELFARE group says that it will make a report to gardaí after a puppy was found shot dead in Athlone.

  Billy Gallagher of Athlone SPCA says that he received a call yesterday about the discovery of the husky puppy at the entrance of Glynwood Bog, a popular dog walking spot for families.

  The dog was found with four shotgun cartridges on his body.

  Gallagher says that the society has made contact with the dog’s owner, but that they had abandoned the dog, not shot it.

  “We’re going to pass all of that information off to gardaí.

  “It’s a very popular area for people to bring their dogs for walks. Someone was walking their dog and spotted this and called us.”

Although the picture posted on the society’s Facebook page shows only one side of the dog, Gallagher says the other side would be “too distressing”.

  “I only showed the one side because when I lifted up the dog, half its head was gone. I couldn’t put that up because it would be too distressing to people.

  “I didn’t want to turn the dog over and show what happened.”

Gallagher says that cases like this are the extreme, but they deal with “one or two” cases of dumping, in some instances on motorways, a week.

  Anyone in need of assistance with animals in the area can contact ASPCA on 087 9925052.



Elderly man banned from keeping dogs in ‘graphic and horrific’ caseThe 80-year-old was also handed down a three-month suspended sentence after the ISPCA discovered four dead dogs and four emaciated Collies at his property in Cork.

The Journal.ie, 21/11/2013

AN 80-YEAR-OLD man has been banned from ever owning a dog again in a case described as “the most graphic and horrific” the garda inspector had seen.

  Andrew Doherty of Rowels, Meelin in Cork was convicted of animal cruelty and handed a three-month suspended sentence.

  “If he was a younger man, I would lock him straight up without hesitation,” said presiding judge Brian Sheridan.

Last February, ISPCA inspector Lisa O’Donovan visited Doherty’s property following a complaint to the charity’s helpline. On gaining access, she found four emaciated Collies locked in “filthy dark sheds”.

  She also discovered four Collies which had already died. One was still chained within the shed.

  The live dogs were described as “skeletal”, with one weighing in at only 5.5kg, less than one third of its optimum weight.

  According to animal welfare group, the dogs were extremely nervous on being rescued. “It took hours of gentle coaxing to get even the slightest wag of a tail,” it said.

  “This was a particularly horrendous act of cruelty,” added O’Donovan. “Although we managed to save four of the dogs, one cannot help but think of the poor dogs that perished.”

Speaking in court, Judge Sheridan praised the work of the ISPCA and, in particular, the welfare inspector Lisa O’Donovan who he said had “persisted” on seeing the other property on Doherty’s holding, despite being told an untruth by him.

  The four surviving dogs were taken to the ISPCA’s National Animal Centre where they underwent months of rehabilitation to address their physical and mental problems.  All were eventually rehomed with experienced owners where they needed more time to overcome their difficult pasts.

  “This case highlights what the work of the ISPCA is all about” said the society’s Chief Inspector Conor Dowling, “the 3 R’s – Rescue, Rehabilitation and Rehoming. And, when there is evidence of a criminal offence of cruelty, we will endeavour to have those responsible held accountable”.