Dear friends and donors,

In order to reduce some of the suffering of animals, we inspect slaughterhouses, livestock-markets and livestock-trucks. If we don’t do it, nobody will. We often witness very sad things, but we also achieve results. This gives us hope. Thanks to your support we can be there for the animals – every day!

In this newsletter there is special attention given to laying hens, animal-welfare improvements at pig slaughterhouses and a recent episode of Tros Radar TV show about our successful horse campaign.

In action for 840 spent laying hens

Last month Eyes on Animals helped the organization Rettet das Huhn to catch and load 840 spent-laying hens in Germany in an animal-friendly manner. The hens were caught gently around the wings and put upright in crates, two animals at a time. The hens were calm: a big difference compared to the regular method with which the animals scream and fly around in panic.

The 840 hens that we helped load are fortunately not going for slaughter, but will spend their “retirement” days at loving foster-homes.

Eyes on Animals aim is to change the conventional way spent-hens are being caught and loaded by industry, and replace it by this welfare-friendlier alternative. We are now working on an educational brochure and film for chicken catchers and in discussion with the poultry industry about adopting these changes.

Mandatory training for chicken catchers

The way laying hens are caught is ruthless. They are grabbed by their legs, held up-side-down for minutes and crammed into crates with many other animals. Crushed limbs, injuries, bone fractures are unfortunately common practice. Chicken-catchers are often poorly paid and put under extreme pressure by managers and farmers to work quickly, with little priority given to welfare.

Eyes on Animals has inspected and videotaped the catching and loading for transport of poultry many times. After coverage in the media and holding many meetings with the poultry-industry, things are finally moving forward. A mandatory training course for chicken catchers in which animal welfare plays a prominent role is in the works. We will carefully monitor the content and effect of these training courses and will keep conducting inspections of chicken-catching. Read more.

Improvements in Dutch pig slaughterhouses

Eyes on Animals regularly visits slaughterhouses to see if animal welfare can be improved. After consulting the well-known ethologist Temple Grandin, we gave advice to a slaughterhouse in the province of Gelderland to adjust part of the raceway , which they did. Because of this there are less congestions and the pigs are less frightened to move forward. At another slaughterhouse in the province of Utrecht our inspectors had serious doubts whether the pigs were adequately rendered unconscious before slaughter.  After we expressed our concerns, the director adjusted the stunning method. Read more.

As well, slaughterhouse Hilckman in Nijmegen is going to close its current plant and build a new one outside of the city. We have sent them recommendations for how to best limit animal stress and panic in the design of their new plant to avoid repeating mistakes of industry in the past. This way we can limit stress and suffering for thousands of animals also in the future. The plant responded very positively and will put our advice into practice. Read more.

Success horse campaign:
EonA again on “Radar” TV show

On August 31st the hugely popular Dutch TV show “Radar“ reported on the successes of our horse campaign. As a result of our investigative report last year showing the horrible way horses are transported and slaughtered in North, Central and South America, Dutch supermarkets and snack producers have stopped or drastically reduced selling imported horse meat. Even a European import ban on horse meat from Mexico has been put in place, which has led to the reduction in the number of horses slaughtered there by 60 per cent. To watch the show click here.

Finally: Our Eyes on Animals Annual Report 2014 is finished. Curious? Read it here

Without your help we could not attain these important steps to curb animal-suffering. Please, do support us with a donation. Every gift, small or large, is very appreciated

This newsletter is sponsored by Amsterdam House Hotel

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