Archive for January, 2010

There are now just 11 days left until the extended deadline (Feb 11th)  for MEP’s to sign Written Declaration 54/2009, calling for a review of the legislation governing the long distance transport of horses to slaughter.

Please take a look at the list below to see how supportive MEP’s have been in your country;

France 20 signatures 28% of MEPs have signed
Slovenia 6 signatures 85% of MEPs have signed
UK 61 signatures 85% of MEPs have signed
Finland 9 signatures 69% of MEPs have signed
Sweden 12 signatures 67% of MEPs have signed
Czech Republic 12 signatures 55% of MEPs have signed
Denmark 7 signatures 53% of MEPs have signed
Belgium 11 signatures 50% of MEPs have signed
Cyprus 3 signatures 50% of MEPs have signed
Lithuania 6 signatures 50% of MEPs have signed
Luxembourg 3 signatures 50% of MEPs have signed
Poland 23 signatures 46% of MEPs have signed
Netherlands 10 signatures 40% of MEPs have signed
Italy 28 signatures 39% of MEPs have signed
Latvia 3 signatures 38% of MEPs have signed
Romania 11 signatures 38% of MEPs have signed
Austria 6 signatures 35% of MEPs have signed
Greece 7 signatures 32% of MEPs have signed
Ireland 3 signatures 25% of MEPs have signed
Malta 1 signatures 20% of MEPs have signed
Germany 19 signatures 19% of MEPs have signed
Estonia 1 signatures 17% of MEPs have signed
Slovakia 2 signatures 15% of MEPs have signed
Hungary 3 signatures 14% of MEPs have signed
Portugal 3 signatures 14% of MEPs have signed
Spain 4 signatures 8% of MEPs have signed
Bulgaria 1 signature 6% of MEPs have signed


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ERF are delighted to be part of the Member Society network of  WSPA (World Society for the Protection of Animals). WSPA review all memberships on an annual basis and have very kindly waived the membership fee for ERF for this coming year. The network is an international force that influences local decision makers and governments alike focussing on positive changes for animals worldwide.

The WSPA Member Society Network is the largest international alliance of animal welfare organisations in the world, with more than 900 member societies in over 150 countries.

ERF are very proud to be associated with WSPA and would like to publically thank them for their all their support and assistance over the past year.

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Disaster in Waiting

Two horses in Wiltshire in the UK have recently tested positive for EIA. They have been destroyed, and another 50 horses are currently under observation. They are believed to belong to dealers who keep their horses in large barns, and have a continual flow of horses through private customers and the sale rings. The potential for spread is alarming.

This is a Notifiable Disease, with compulsory slaughter for any equine testing positive. The DEFRA website has more information about the procedures in the UK. Unfortunately, there is no obligation for an insurance company to pay out under such circumstances, and the DEFRA compensation is a princely £1 per animal.

Horses are allowed to travel freely between France Ireland and the UK under an agreement called the TPA. Although effective when set up in the 1970s, many of the stipulations in the agreement are no longer relevant.

INAGs (ERF’s sister site in the UK), has uncovered evidence of meat horses (with breed passports) travelling freely from Europe, including Rumania where EIA is endemic, to the UK. The EU borders are not policed, and horses going to slaughter are not required to have health checks, or a Coggin’s test. These horses are travelled to France to be transported across the channel under the TPA, and then sold on as riding horses in the UK.

We would like to ask you to read and sign this petition, in the hope that DEFRA will listen, and change the rulings to help prevent diseases such as this becoming a disaster similar to Foot & Mouth.


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Yesterday we bid farewell to our 2 beautiful Trotter mares as they headed off to their new home in the Dordogne. Lee and Eunice have become the girls new Guardians and we are sure they are going to be treated like princesses with them!

The girls settled in to their new home straight away

Lily & Marcy came to us at the beginning of December with terribly neglected feet – you can see what they looked like here. Hoof neglect is such a major problem we face here in France which causes such unnecessary suffering.

These girls deserve every happiness and we look forward to reporting on their progress in the near future.

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It has been brought to our attention that there has been 3 cases of Piroplasmosis in the last few days around the Confolens (dept.16) area. Whilst we don’t want to scare monger people, it’s always worth checking your equines for ticks frequently and knowing the tell tale signs of Piroplasmosis.The ticks that have been the culprits recently have apparently been very small and can easily be missed.

Please refer to our earlier posts on Piroplasmosis for more details on the disease;



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It was only a matter of time before EIA worked its way into the UK…

And now it has, via 2 horses imported in from Romania via Belgium on 22nd December. Defra has confirmed that these horses will be destroyed after testing positive during random post-import testing. 50 more equines at the same yard, reportedly a dealer who regularly imports equine under the guise of  for ‘breeding purposes’, are also under surveillance.

ERF were so concerned by the increasing number of  ‘rescued equines’ being imported into the UK from Europe, and the associated risk of infectious diseases, that they helped form a sister group last year called INAG for Equines. Together with INAG’s, ERF have been warning Defra that the present Tripartite Agreement (which allows equines to travel between France,Ireland and the UK without health checks)  was putting the UK horse population at great risk.

Last April we reported the EIA outbreak in France causing horses in the Var region to be quarantined and those that tested positive were then euthanized.

For more information on EIA visit the Defra website.

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Every year, 100,000 horses are transported across Europe for slaughter.
These cruel and barbaric journeys have to be stopped. There is no reason for this live transport to continue when horses can be slaughtered at source and transported as carcasses.
It is totally unneccessary for horses to leave France alive to be slaughtered in other EU countries. In France alone there are 111 abattoirs approved to slaughter horses.

It is extremely urgent we contact our MEPs before the 21st January to ask them to sign the Written Declaration 54/2009.

If more than half of all MEPs sign this before 21st January 2010, we will be one step closer to ending these brutal and hugely inappropriate journeys.

If less than half of the MEPs support the Declaration it will fail, weakening the case for new laws ending the long-distance transportation of horses to slaughter in the European Union.

Please take a few minutes to write to your MEPs so we can end these needless long haul journeys of horses to slaughter. We have downloadable copies of the letter in both French and English.

It’s so simple………in the link below go to your region, find the MEPs for your area, click on the email address, copy and paste the relevant language document from the Word Documents below, sign as yourself, and SEND!

Please do this, your effort could be the difference that changes an opinion, and the future for these horses.

To find your MEP in Europe, go to this LINK, click on your country and then your region.

MEP letter French

MEP letter UK

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