Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Questions (52)

Dara Calleary

Question:

52. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if he intends to introduce a scheme for the orderly destruction of unwanted surplus horse; when this scheme will be put in place; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21484/13]

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Written answers (Question to Agriculture)

My Department is making available substantial resources to deal with equine related issues. In particular, funding is provided to Local Authorities under the Control of Horses Act, 1996, to enable these bodies to implement their extensive powers relating to the control and welfare of stray or abandoned horses. In keeping with advice on humane disposal of horses from the Farm Animal Welfare Advisory Council (which comprises representatives from a wide range of stakeholder organisations including farming, equine and welfare bodies), substantial numbers of horses are disposed of each year under the Control of Horses Act. There are no plans at this juncture to go outside this arrangement. The horse industry must play its role and respond to changes in the market place and educate and increase awareness among owners on responsible breeding, particularly in the current economic environment.