The ISPCA is campaigning for an end to ‘inhumane’ fur farming with the closure of three known fur farms in Ireland.
One fur farm in Donegal, located near Ardara, and others in Kerry and Laois, are said to contain up to 200,000 mink, of which around 150,000 are killed every year.
The ISPCA and Respect for Animals say the only viable solution to the serious welfare concerns of the practice is to ban fur farming.
The animal protection society says mink are essentially wild animals and not suited to be kept in tiny, barren wire cages and bred intensively in fur farms simply for luxury fashion items.
Some 5,000 American mink escaped from the Donegal farm in 2010. The owners blamed the act on ‘animal terrorists’ who cut the wire and opened the gates in an attempt to release the animals.
A ban on fur farming was recently introduced in the Dáil by Solidarity TD, Deputy Ruth Coppinger.
Ms Coppinger said that it was cruel to farm mink because they were not domesticated animals and feared humans.
The ISCPA and Respect for Animals are fully supporting the proposed ban.
Dr Andrew Kelly, ISPCA CEO said: “There is overwhelming scientific evidence that fur farming is cruel. Mink are essentially wild animals and keeping them in small cages in which they are deprived of the ability to express their normal behaviours such as swimming and foraging is not acceptable.
“Every year approximately 150,000 mink are killed in Ireland solely for a non-essential fashion item which is simply unacceptable.
“We are calling on the government to put an end to this inhumane practice. Many EU member states have already adopted legislation to prohibit or limit fur farming and we want Ireland to put an end to this barbaric practice which should be consigned to the dustbin of history.”
Mark Glover, Respect for Animals & Fur Free Alliance said: “A ban is the only viable solution to the serious welfare concerns caused by the fur factory farming of mink.
“Governments around Europe are legislating to end this cruel practice, which contravenes the European Directive concerning the animals kept for farming purposes and the Council of Europe recommendation concerning fur animals.
Mr Glover said: “Fur farming is a disaster for animal welfare and it is clear from the opinion poll results released today that such a ban has huge support from the Irish public.”
Fur farming was banned in England and Wales in 2000, and in Scotland and Northern Ireland in 2002.Tags: