Animal Welfare in New Zealand
Who Cares For Poor Dolly Cow?
"The Calves Died Inside their Mothers"
It came to our attention last year that dairy cows were being transported from the warmth of the North Island to farms as far south as Invercargill. These poor creatures were transported down then left outside, often in calf, without proper shelter. Often they were in freezing cold conditions, sometimes even wading in mud. Their calves often died before or at birth, and the cows themselves were dying, too.
Currently, we are waiting to hear from the New Zealand SPCA to find out if this situation has altered. At the time (last year), the SPCA was worried about the situation but could not interfere because whenever they investigated they could not discover actual cruelty. This partially reflects the inadequate animal welfare laws which still do not afford proper protection to animal welfare rights.
We are also concerned about animal transportation. Driving behind a cattle/sheep truck is distressing. If you can see the animals, they are often salivating with distress. Try to imagine what it is like for these fellow creatures. They have been taken from their home in a green field, forced onto a truck (sometimes in a cruel manner), driven up a noisy and bumpy road through the fumes of other traffice, then taken to a place where they lives will be taken from them. Don't think that they don't know or feel nothing. They do! They are stressed by it and upset. At the very least, vets should be legally required to inspect and monitor every transportation. Animals deserve our compassion.
Are the farmers concerned about animal welfare? Many are only concerned about animal welfare if it affects their profit. Are they concerned about the suffering of our fellow creatures? Our campaign ACTA endeavours to aid creatures whose "owners" are not concerned about this aspect of animal farming.
So what can we do? If you have a , PLEASE write to your local newspapers, the NZ Herald, the NZ Minister of Agriculture's Secretary and/or the NZ SPCA. These letters/emails can be very brief. "Please stop the transportation of North Island dairy cows to the South Island as they are suffering unjustly," or similar, is all you need to say. Please do it. These poor creatures are definitely suffering. They have not been given the opportunity to slowly adapt to the harsher climate and they have a right to live without this added pain and anguish. Imagine how you would feel in their place. It is no different for them.
About NZ Dairy Cows
The most common breed of dairy cow in New Zealand is the Holstein-Friesian (over 50 percent). The Jersey and the Holstein-Friesian-Jersey Cross are the other main breeds. Yes, Holsteins can adapt to different climates but transporting cows in calf, and in unmonitored conditions, AND to then leave them out in the cold when they are used to warmer climates, is completely unacceptable. (How many times do we have to say this?!)
Genetic Engineering in New Zealand
AgResearch in NZ have announced the birth of 4 transgenic calves. They are so pleased that 4 out of 51 calves survived to fullterm (birth). Well, whoopy-do! Four out of 51 are alive. Guess that's how it seems when you take life for granted. Of course, these are genetically altered calves with a human gene.
Here's AgResearch's Locations.
GE News July 29, 2001
Now the Royal Commission has opted out of its responsibility to heed the New Zealand Public's wishes to keep Genetic Engineering out of our country. This decision will ruin our Clean Green image. Just who is making the decisions around here? Because wealthy companies can afford to make fancy submissions and send (paid) scientists to the Commission, should they be the ones to have the most say in how this country is run?
It sure looks that way!
Animal Welfare Laws in New Zealand
In the right-hand column we have some links which give information on the laws and enforcement of animal welfare in New Zealand. The 1999 law slightly improved the situation for our fellow creatures but not by nearly enough. However, it did at least slightly change the focus from preventing cruelty to ensuring animal welfare. For example, the law states that transported animals must be in healthy condition before loading and that they must be transported safely. (We can hope!)
BUT, is it good enough that:
• we poison animals in laboratories until they die, to see how "safe" drugs are.
WHAT DO YOU THINK?
• we condone "research" which injures them to see how bad their pain is and thus make drugs to relieve our own pain.
• we use them to make vaccines in a way which makes their lives and deaths miserable.
• we sometimes transport them in cruel conditions.
• we allow live exports where many die on the journey or arrive in countries which have NO empathy for fellow creatures and treat them accordingly.
Is it right to export live fellow creatures to such countries where cruelty is common-place? Isn't it contravening our own laws to do so?
If animals could speak our language, what would they say to us?
Vote here about animal rights in New Zealand:
(We've decided to keep this subject ongoing and add a comments section.)
Comment on the message board!
The Story of Mackayla.....
Mackayla is an "angel". A very small angel.
She turned only one year old at the end of
July last year!!
To celebrate her first birthday her parents, being caring people,
decided to do something very special.
They asked friends to her birthday party and requested that they bring
food and blankets for the SPCA instead of expensive presents for Mackayla.
Their invitation went like this....
"...Now this concept might seem a little strange to some people,
but as we are not needy and there are others in this world who are, we
would like to ask that instead of fancy gifts for Mackayla (even though
she is a little angel) please bring a donation of cat or dog food which
we will take to the SPCA in Auckland (because Mackayla is a little
angel)... As I'm sure you already know - there are lots of needy dogs and
cats (PS If you have old blankets that are washable I'm sure they'd
love those too for these cold winter months)."
So why not follow their example and do something caring for the animals?
Next time you have something to celebrate, give Angel Mackayla's First
Birthday some thought.
NZ Draft Code of Welfare for Layer Hens, 17 July 2002
The National Animal Welfare Advisory Committee (NAWAC) has released this Draft Code.
Closing date for submissions - 28 August, 2002.
The link leads to the code and how to make a submission.
OR you can get a submission form from SAFE.
Listen to Whale Song (100KB)
SAFE, Save Animals From Exploitation. Actively campaigns for animal welfare.
Enough to make you a vegetarian? Go here to find heaps of links about it.
There are some more recipes here, too.
OR you can even become a Fruitarian!
Animal Welfare Info, NZ:
NZ Animal Welfare, about researching on animals, transport etc., from MAF. MAF's animal welfare complaint hotline is 0800 327-027
1999 NZ Animal Welfare Act, and
MAF's Guide to the Act.
NZ Dairy Board
Two excellent organisations promoting animal welfare:
The Born Free Foundation
The Jane Goodall Institute
Korea's ONLY Animal Protection Society. These people are pioneers in animal welfare for Korean fellow creatures. You can donate online if you wish to. And lobby the Korean government to provide funds for a bigger shelter (they keep turning it down).
Pay a visit to Jessie-Belle, memorial to a much-loved pet. (Wait for the sound to load.)
Natural Animal Healthcare at Shirley's Wellness Cafe.
Premarin, an oestrogen supplement
prescribed for menopausal women.
Humane women won't take it. See this
SPCA news link for a concise report.
For further info, go to Premarin.org
Best Friends, USA
•Chambers of the Heart
•Oh, and do visit Peter Rabbit, just because it's so appealing (even if it is commercial and a frames site!).