Wicklow

Priest gives kennels a pounding.

Sunday People, 07/01/2001

A parish priest announced that the ISPCA was to be booted out of a dog shelter for neglecting dogs in its care.  see more

ISPCA gets dogs abuse over pound

Evening Herald, 8/2/2001

A Wicklow priest called for a public investigation into the operation of the counties dog pound. Fr. Campbell chairman of the Wicklow SPCA told a packed meeting in Ashford that the ISPCA needed to be taken apart from top to bottom. The meeting was held in the wake of an incident over Christmas when members of the WSPCA broke into the pound, which is run by the ISPCA and rescued two dogs. David Coulson told the angry meeting that the ISPCAs record in running dog pounds had been appalling. He claimed that unwanted dogs had been electrocuted since 1975 in Cork and that in Louth they had been shot until mid 1999 and that dogs from Leitrim had been sent to a rendering plant in Longford and eventually fed to pigs and chickens. However, since the BSE scare unwanted dogs now went to a rendering plant in Cavan, he said.


Irish Examiner, 17/01/2003

An elderly farmer and publican, John Cullen, from Redcross Co.Wicklow, was fined €400 at Rathdrum court yesterday (16/1/03) on one charge of cruelty to animals. Seventeen other charges were taken into consideration. Sgt Martin McAndrew from Avoca, who visited the farm on a number of occasions between March 10 and April 6 last year following complaints told Judge Donnachadh O’Buachalla yesterday that the defendant had paid €4,000 to the Wicklow Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and had paid the vet’s expenses. A previous court was told that Garda McAndrew had found the unburied carcasses of 20 animals some of which have been dead for a couple of weeks.


Farmer arrested for animal smuggling

Wicklow People, 24/07/2003

The Dunlavin livestock dealer who hit the headlines when he smuggled sheep from a foot and mouth infected herd into the country has been arrested again, on suspicion of animal smuggling. Fifty three year old John Walsh will appear in a Scottish court this Monday on suspicion of importing animals without a permit and animal cruelty. Forty three puppies and three kittens that were in Walsh’s possession at the time have been taken into care at animal welfare centres in Scotland. Walsh is originally from Calverstown but his family moved to Ballyhurtin Dunlavin many years ago. Walsh was jailed in January 2002 by a Dublin court when he was convicted of smuggling almost 300 sheep, some of which were infected with foot and mouth, into Ireland. His Offaly farm was seized this year by CAB in order to pay a tax bill believed to be in the region of €900,000. 



Horror of pups nailed to door 'Slaughtered for yapping'
Irish Sun, 27/04/2006

Two yapping puppies were bludgeoned to death – then NAILED to a door.
Horrified gardai and ISPCA chiefs wee last night investigating claims that the killer was the dog's owner. He allegedly slaughtered the cute pair with a lump hammer.  see more

 
Silencer on a deer hunter's weapon
Wicklow People newspaper,13/06/2012 
A MAN WHO had a silencer on a gun while out illegally hunting deer had his case adjourned until July at last Tuesday's sitting of Baltinglass District Court.  Paddy Cullen, 9 Harbour View, Wexford was charged with an offence under the Wildlife Act on December 29, 2010 and again on January 26, 2011.  He pleaded guilty to the charges and the court heard on December 29, 2010 John Kelly who had leased the deer shooting rights for a wooded area met Cullen carrying a gun 500 meters inside the wood.  He challenged Cullen who said he had permission from a farmer to shoot.
On January 26, 2011 in a different area Andrew Ryan who had leased the deer shooting rights for that area met Cullen with a rifle and a silencer 200 meters inside the wood.  Mr. Ryan told Cullen he had no permission to be there and asked him to leave.
Cullen told Judge David Kennedy he didn't realise he had no permission to be on the lands shooting.  'I don't accept that for a second,' said Judge Kennedy.  He adjourned the case until July 3 to allow gardai time to check if Cullen had permission to use a silencer on his rifle.


Irish Examiner, 17/01/2003

An elderly farmer and publican, John Cullen, from Redcross Co. Wicklow, was fined €400 at Rathdrum court yesterday (16/01/2003) on one charge of cruelty to animals. Seventeen other charges were taken into consideration.

Sgt. Martin McAndrew from Avoca, who visited the farm on a number of occasions between March 10 and April 6 last year following complaints told Judge Donnachadh O’Buachalla yesterday that the defendant had paid €4,000 to the Wicklow Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and had paid the vet’s expenses.

A previous court was told that Garda McAndrew had found the unburied carcasses of 20 animals some of which has been dead for a couple of weeks.



The food minister who flouts his own rules on quality

Sunday Tribune, 03/12/2000

Ned O’Keefe’s pig farm uses meat and bone meal.  see more



Badger-hunt holidays are arranged for UK groups

Irish Times, 26/09/1995

Men are travelling to Ireland from Britain for organised badger-baiting holidays. One of them, a prominent terrier breeder, has been organising trial badger baits for Irish enthusiasts.

  Two men, one in Co Meath and the other in west Wicklow, have been letting houses for the past three years to British enthusiasts.

  Badger-baiting is a blood sport and is illegal under the 1976 Wildlife Act. It involves putting trained terriers into badger homes, or setts, where they hold at bay any animal they find. The dog handlers then dig towards the sound of the barking, until they trap the cornered animal.

  At this point more dogs are either released onto the badger to kill it or it is placed in a bag and taken to a “bait”. This is an organised fight between a badger and dogs. Bets are normally placed on the result.

  British police sources say that one man who travels to Ireland has a criminal record for illegal possession of firearms, armed robbery and assault.

  One known and respected British terrier breeder has been involved, and has been featured in British fieldsports publications. He organises trials for badger-baiting enthusiasts interested in purchasing his dogs.

  At these trials, dogs which are offered for sale are pitted against badgers and are purchased on the strength of their killing abilities.

  One man who acts as an agent for the British terrier breeder told The Irish Times that many Irish “diggers” – a slang term for badger-baiting followers – have purchased dogs from him.

  While in Ireland last year on a badger-baiting trip, the British breeder also judged a dog show for a hunting fair. Another man who judged at this show is directly involved in organising badger-digging holidays.

  Mr John Bryant, wildlife officer of the British League Against Cruel Sports, said that the identities of the individuals who travel to Ireland for badger-baiting are known.

  A spokesman for the Irish Council Against Bloodsports, Mr John Tierney, said that it was not surprising that some involved in badger baiting had connections with legal bloodsports. He said that in Britain legal fieldsports enthusiasts had been prosecuted for illegal bloodsports.

  Mr James Norton of the Irish Masters of Foxhounds Association said that his organisation did not condone badger-baiting.

  “I can confirm that every effort is made by our members not to disturb badger setts or earths where badgers are known to be in residence. The Irish Masters of FoxhoundsAssociation is concerned about allegations which attempt to link prohibited activities with traditional fieldsports.”

The Badgerwatch spokeswoman, Ms Angel Tinney, said: “Until such a time as Ireland gets Garda wildlife officers to investigate wildlife crime, Ireland will always be seen internationally as a haven for bloodsports.”

  A spokesman for the Garda Press Office said that any incident of badger baiting reported to the gardai was investigated fully. He appealed to members of the public with information to contact their local Garda station.



Satanic slaying

News of the World, 03/09/2006

Dog owners are fearful for their pets after a collie was killed in an apparent satanic ritual.  The dog’s remains, with its throat slit and head crushed, were found on an stone altar inside a spooky stone circle.  A walker made the gruesome discovery in a remote wooded area in Enniskerry earlier this week.  Now Wicklow SPCA are warning folk to keep family pets indoors.

  Noel Campbell of the animal welfare group said: “It seems the dog was bled dry as part of some ritual and then partly burnt.

  “I would urge people to keep an eye on their animals and not let them out unsupervised after dark.”

The authorities have destroyed the altar and the Gardai in Enniskerry are investigating.



Slaughter of pups shocks residents

Irish Independent, 27/04/2006

Gardai are investigating the brutal killing of two pet pups which were slain with a lump hummer and nailed to a fence.

  The vicious slaughter of the dogs, believed to be Jack Russell terriers, happened in Sycamore Drive in Newtownmountkennedy, Co Wicklow, last weekend.

  It is understood an allegation was made that there were complaints about the pups. The dogs were nailed to a fence between two properties.

  Gardai were called in along with the ISPCA. Wicklow County Council is also examining the case.

  The incident has left locals in a state of shock.

  Councillor Conal Kavanagh said there was deep upset among neighbours in the estate that such brutal suffering could have been inflicted.

“The council has to take that into account in their investigations as a matter of urgency, “ he added.



Wild birds caught by illegal trapping for trading as pets

Song-birds in good condition can command prices of up to £25 each

Irish Times, 02/08/1995

Wild song-birds, including goldfinches and bulfinches, are being illegally trapped in Wicklow and west Dublin for sale to avian enthusiasts and song-bird breeders. The Irish Times had learned that a number of individuals based in Tallaght and east Wicklow have already started to trap goldfic6hes for the pet trade.

  Trapping song-birds is illegal under the 1976 Wildlife Act. August traditionally signals the start of the illegal trapping season. Goldfinches are the most sought-after species for trapping, as birds in good condition can command prices of up to £25 each on the black market.

  Song-birds are trapped in two ways. The first, bird liming, involves placing a coat of bird lime, a glue-like substance on branches near a caged bird. The “caller”, as the caged bird is called, acts as a decoy to attract birds of similar species. When a wild bird lands on a branch coated in bird lime, it immediately gets stuck and is then captured by the trapper.

  The other method involves the use of specially designed trap cages. These are cages which have a holding compartment for a “caller” bird and a number of smaller spring-loaded trap cages. Trap cages are c6tivated when a bird lands on the “caller” bird’s cage. This traps the wild bird in a small compartment located on the top of the cage trap.

  A significant portion of wild song-birds die during capture and transportation from stress and handling. The life expectancy is very short as wild birds are not suited to captive lifestyles.

  Following capture, song-birds are laundered into the legal pet trade by placing closed bird rings on them. All native bird species sold in pet shops and at bird markets must have a closed bird ring on them. These are placed on captive-bred birds while still in the nest. As nestlings grow the ring becomes too small to remove over the foot. This ensures that all birds which have closed rings on their legs are captive bred.

  However, it has been learned that a small number of trappers are circumventing the Wildlife Act by putting closed-rings on wild caught birds.

  One trapper in Enniscorthy, Co Wexford, told The Irish Times that by placing a closed metal bird ring on a hot nail, the ring could be enlarged and forced over a bird’s foot and on to its leg. When the ring cools it returns to its former size.

  Trapped birds are sold to pet shops and at bird markets. A small number are “legally” exported to Britain.

  Mr John Coveney, spokesman for the Irish WIldbird Conservancy, said the trapping of song-birds was not a major conservation problem. However, it had caused problems to species populations in local areas.

  The spokesman also called on the Government to introduce legislation to protect song-bird bird habitats and introduce more significant fines for those caught trapping wild birds.



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 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.



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.