We told you the story of Bella – the lab-mix who required extensive dental surgery after being caught in a leg-hold trap in Labrador in mid-November. But since then, APFA has learned of three other reports of dogs being caught – and in two cases, killed – by traps in Canada.
As we outlined in a news release issued today, there are no regulations requiring signage, flags or notification to nearby residents or visitors that trapping is occurring. A relaxing afternoon walk can turn into a living nightmare in seconds.
Media reports and direct contact from pet owners with corroboration is the only way we are able to track these incidents – how many dogs, cats and non-target species caught in ‘certified humane’ traps is impossible to know. However, we are aware of these four incidents since mid-November:
- Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Newfoundland and Labrador (leg-hold trap severely injured Bella, who required extensive oral surgery as a result);
- Stirling, Ontario (Conibear killed a mid-sized dog on a popular multi-use trail);
- Eastern Townships, Quebec (Conibear killed a dog on a nature preserve); and,
- Wabush Lake, Newfoundland and Labrador (leg-hold trap caught, but did not injure a family pet).
It has been clear to the Association for more than 50 years that trapping will never be humane and animals will always suffer. Whether it is a pet dog or cat who is exploring or a wild animal simply trying to survive, traps indiscriminately injure, maim and kill. In 21st century Canada, there is no justification for this. We need Canadians to know that until our provincial and territorial governments take action to end this cruel practice and the fur industry that props it up, they need to exercise additional caution during trapping seasons.
We have available a short video showing how to release a common leg-hold trap for dog owners. We will be releasing more videos in this series in early 2015.