05/26/12 Horror on the Final Journey
Animal Friends is organizing a protest against animal transport
- Protest and impressive performance in the city center
Although animals are living creatures which, like people, have a conscious, feel pain, hunger and thirst, experience feelings of sadness, fear and panic and have a will to live, during transport they are treated as objects. Numerous photographs and video footage recorded throughout the world's transportation routes, especially at animal loading and unloading sites, testify to frequent and extraordinary cruelties which the animals are exposed to on their final journey.
Frightened, wounded, hungry and thirsty with broken limbs, these animals are unloaded at their final destination after enduring long voyages in all weather conditions with no rest. Not being able to moving fast enough or in the direction expected, they stumble and fall, ending up exhausted or paralyzed by fear, no longer able to stand up. Many of them continue to lie on the feces covered floors of the trucks, often trampled to death in overcrowded trucks, suffocating due to the immense heat or frozen to death in the subzero temperatures.
These animals will never be able to "testify" forthemselves. Therefore, in order to draw attention to the horrors that animals endure in transit, Animal Friends' activists will march in protest on Saturday, May 26, 2012, starting at Trg kralja Tomislava and arriving at Trg bana Josipa Jelacica in Zagreb at 12:00 noon where they will stage an impressive visual performance.
The protest and performance aims to draw attention to the appalling statistics on the transport of live animals:
- Broken bones, bleeding and hematomas occur most often in injured birds (multiple bone fractures in chicken "broilers" areestimated at 95%), as a result of extremely rough handling and overcrowdingin dirty and narrow crates or transport cages.
- Increase in physical and mental stress in pigsfurther aggravates these animals as they suffer from so-called "motion sickness" (they show a high level of sensitivity to noise, movement, changes in the environment etc.), which is manifested by salivation, vomiting, diarrhea, increased body temperature and lethargy.
- Overcrowding and other stress factors which cattle are exposed to during transportation significantly impair their immune system. One particular illness, which manifests itself during the transport of cattle is pneumonia induced by bovine herpes or the Pasteurella bacteria.
- Studies have shown that sheep and lamb may lose up to 8% of body weight after 24 hours in transport, as a consequence of the expulsion of feces. This reaction is the result of extreme psychological stress. Even after long periods of thirst, sheep refuse to drink water from unknown sources. Common causes of death are dehydration, suffocation and trampling to death.
It is estimated that, in Europe, more than six million animals are transported annually for more than eight hours at a time. Such prolonged exposure to severe transport conditions results in extremely high levels of mental and physical stress, the consequences of which are fatigue, exhaustion, injury and death. Even though Croatia does not meet all criteria for animal transport, due to its lack of rest stopsand adequate border crossings for animals, its roads are still full of overloaded trucks.Animals are kept up to ten hours on border crossings even though the maximum time should be two hours and only in extremely exceptional circumstances. Theharrowing journey of animals transported from the European Union can last up to several days.
The practice of transportation demonstrates the overwhelming truth about the many vague terms within the statutory provisions and their inefficiency and inability to control said practice in accordance with legal regulations. Animal Friends believes that the transport of live animals is completely unnecessary, unethical and cruel and should, as such, be completely banned.
The most effective way for each individual to make a pledge for the ban of transport of animals is to switch to a plant based diet – automatically refusing to take part in animal suffering. Choosinga diet which excludes foods of animal origin improves our health and safeguards the environment thus directly reducing the suffering of animals during transport.
Protest is organized in collaboration with FARM Sabina Fund.
To see a photo gallery please click here.