Day: December 16, 2019

UK: Polling Station Dogs – A British Way of Life !

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As we said in a recent post. The UK has just had a General Election:


If there’s anything the Brits love more than any democracy, it is their dogs.

Politicians come and go. Governments form, try to function and usually fail. But dogs are a universal constant.

Brits take their dogs everywhere – and the polling station when they vote is one such place. In the UK a kind of ‘polling station dog’ photo trend has developed in recent years; people take pictures of their own dogs at the polling station and then share with others.

God forbid; but dogs are not allowed in the polling area; and so they patiently wait outside for a few minutes whilst owner casts his or her vote.

Here are a few (randomly selected) polling station dogs from the event of 12/12/19. Enjoy.

Regards Mark


Image result for uk dogs at polling stations

Image result for uk dogs at polling stations

Image result for uk dogs at polling stations

Image result for uk dogs at polling stations

Image result for uk dogs at polling stations

Image result for uk dogs at polling stations

Image result for uk dogs at polling stations

Image result for uk dogs at polling stations
Image result for uk dogs at polling stations


England: Dismantle Dairy – A New Campaign by ‘Surge’.




With thanks to Stacey –



Surge have launched a brand new campaign Dismantle Dairy, featuring 18 months of undercover footage obtained from inside UK dairy farms. Independent investigators placed hidden cameras in dairy farms around the UK, as well as obtaining HD footage during visits. The footage revealed widespread incidences of physical and emotional abuse of mothers and calves.

Surge found repeated incidences of punching, kicking, excessive tail twisting, swearing/shouting, beating with sticks, separation of calves from their mothers, force-feeding of calves and the disposal of calves. Investigators also recorded HD footage during visits, capturing harrowing scenes such as dead cows and calves left to rot outside for days.

However, rather than draw attention to individual farms and create the impression that these are isolated cases or “bad eggs”, the campaign seeks to expose the dairy industry as a whole, revealing how even standard practices such as separation at birth and removal of calves is abuse. Violence on dairy farms is ubiquitous and occurs in all farms, including those associated with high ranking officials within the industry.

This is not about one “bad farm”, or one “bad farmer”, Dismantle Dairy is about the foundations the dairy industry is built upon. Standard, legal dairy industry practice involves (but is not limited to):

Artificially inseminating dairy cows.
Separating babies from their mothers (usually within 24 – 72 hours of birth).
Killing ‘useless’ male calves soon after they are born (this is known as the “dirty secret” within the industry).
Keeping newborn calves in solitary confinement pens.
Sending dairy cows to slaughter when they can no longer produce milk for the farmer.

Prior to the campaign release, the authorities including the RSPCA and APHA have been notified of the farms and footage where necessary.

See more in the The Independent:

Cows sexually abused, hit and punched at company owned by NFU deputy president, footage shows

This particular farm is owned by Guy Smith, Deputy President of The National Farmers’ Union, the largest organisation representing farmers in the UK. What we found on the farm was so horrific, so brutal, that The Independent couldn’t show all of it in their press video; however, it is available to watch below:



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Vienna: must abolish carriage horses!





The 🎄Christmas season is high season for the 🐎Vienna Fiaker. Regardless of whether it is icy cold or the risk of slipping when wet, the horse-drawn carriages are always on the go. One carriage after the other travels through the tourist crowds in downtown Vienna. For the horses this means anything but a “contemplative time”. Vienna has so much more to offer than animal suffering.

Sad but true: the Vienna Fiaker tours are not missing from any travel guide, which are listed as a “must”. Numerous pictures of the horses stretched in front of the carriages can be seen. This should convey the right Vienna flair and make you want to visit the Danube metropolis. But traveling is different in the 21st century. Animals are sentient beings who feel suffering as much as we humans.

And the animals suffer.


Education is important to draw attention to the suffering of horses. Because many don’t know that
➡️ horses have a high risk of falling and injury due to the uneven and slippery floor.
➡️ they need constant access to roughage, which is hardly possible in the city.
➡️ the horses suffer from traffic stress, noise and hustle and bustle in the city center.

In spring 2019 we asked the publishers of the largest travel guides as well as a city tour provider and a large travel platform what the level of awareness of the suffering of the Fiaker is and whether they are willing to no longer advertise the Fiaker as an attraction or to present it more critically. We have observed the main editions of the travel guides:

Big Bus Vienna = romantic carriage ride
Dumont = a must
Lonely Planet = best city tour
Marco Polo = expensive, but great pleasure
Polyglott on Tour = tourist icons
Trip Advisor = Recommendations by users possible
And under “Animal Welfare Problems ?” there is an outrageous X!!

Reiseführer Check_Fiake Pferde

Cause for concern

Not only from an animal welfare point of view, but also from a safety point of view, fiasco tours are extremely questionable. It becomes clear here how great the risk potential is in the city center. The driver himself says that it is not always possible to control the animals. This is also proven by the frequent accidents in downtown Vienna.


From an animal welfare point of view, it is unacceptable to say that the drivers do not feed the animals in the city, but “only at night in the stable”. Horses need continuous access to roughage, everything else is cruelty to animals. The animals’ digestive system should always get small portions of hay, because it is not suitable for long feeding breaks. These can lead to serious health problems such as painful stomach ulcers and colic.

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That is also a fact, of course: last year, the Inner City district itself estimated the annual repair costs of the road surface as a result of the horse-drawn carriage rides at 750,000 euros.

With your petition you send a protest email prepared by us to Lonely Planet, Polyglott, Marco Polo, Dumont and TripAdvisor. This email will be sent from your (private) email address.

By sending the email, you give your consent for the companies mentioned above to receive mail from your email address.

Sign our petition now and call for better living conditions for the Fiaker horses. (The completed mail petition can be found in this link)


My comment: 12 hours in scorching heat or freezing cold, these animals have to pull a massive, heavy carriage behind them, loaded with people who care a shit about the obvious animal suffering.

Because how else could one understand that people pay a lot of money for this primitive pleasure of a carriage ride, even though they have two horses in front of their eyes, with blinders and very often with earplugs, because otherwise they would not be able to stand the noise of the carriages and the traffic?

Without a doubt, these people know instinctively that standing of the horses for a long time at the horse-drawn carriages is a great challenge for their tendons and joints, because they are escape animals, accustomed to movement;
Then there is the pulling of the load on asphalt-like ground. Many of these workhorses suffer from hoof diseases and joint complaints, which will be massive with increasing age.

And even in their ‘free time’ – if we can even speak of ‘free time’ for carriage horses – they usually live a lonely and completely unnatural life.
365 days a year, the officialworking time’ (of course without calculating the arrival and departure) in winter from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., in summer from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The horses are often  the reassured-medium Sedalin administered. The animals become apathetic to their environment, they have a reduced sensation of pain and can be easily manipulated.


From August 2017, the Viennese Fiaker may no longer drive at 35 degrees in summer.
Anyone who does not follow this can expect fines of up to 3,500 euros.

But high, low temperatures, less or a lot of work, that’s not the point.
The exploitation of animals for tourism must stop in general and in principle.

Animals are not a tourist attraction, they are not our slaves and they are not our pleasure.
Something like this belongs no longer to a civilized society, and everyone who has not yet understood it, is a primitive, underdeveloped person who deliberately ignores the suffering of animals for a romantic horse-drawn carriage.

Or make money with it, like the politicians who promote it.

My best regards to all, Venus

Latest info: I got a good reaction to my mail! right now:
Dear Ms. Venus …,

Thank you for your email and your critical feedback about our Vienna travel guide.

The welfare of animals is also very important to us and we will pay even more attention to animal welfare when choosing the “attractions” in the future. Our authors are informed and corresponding recommendations will be avoided in the future i.e. deleted in the next issue.
Yours sincerely

Your reader service team
Box 86 03 13
81630 Munich
Tel: 00800- 7 23 73 333 *
Fax: 00800 – 5 01 20 544 *

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It works!
Please keep on writing your protest emails!

Romania: Surviving Sheep To Be Given Sanctuary ? – A Message From Lyn White (Animals Australia).





I wanted to get in touch with an update about the capsized live export ship disaster in Romania. Last time I emailed, I asked if you could help us call on the Romanian Government to save the survivors stranded in the upturned ship out on the ocean.

Thank you for taking that action, Mark. Your voice, alongside thousands of our other dedicated supporters, helped save 180 lives. These gentle sheep are now safe. Thank you.

Your determination — in unity with rescuers and thousands of other caring people globally — provided the beacon of hope amidst the overwhelming tragedy.

The rescued sheep are currently under the care of the Romanian veterinary authority, and the Prime Minister of Romania has given his word that he will do everything he can to ensure the sheep will soon be transferred to sanctuaries where they can live their lives in peace.



But your advocacy goes beyond the immediate situation to save the survivors. You’ve directly contributed to a kinder future for all sheep who face live export in Romania. Since you and others so strongly encouraged the country’s Prime Minister to take urgent action, a bill to end live export has been put forward in the Romanian Parliament.

The Prime Minister himself has acknowledged the need for this cruel trade to end. Romania is Europe’s biggest exporter of live animals — this is historic, and such progress could very well have taken years. But ending live export is now firmly on the political agenda there.

While we still have a long way to go, Mark, I can tell you with certainty that without your action on behalf of these animals, these historic steps forward simply couldn’t have been achieved.

As I know you understand, this disaster has again highlighted the needless cruelty at the heart of all live export. You helped save those who could be saved, but together we will never forget the tens of thousands onboard who perished, for nothing other than profit. I know we are now only more committed to ending live export globally, for good. Heartfelt thanks for providing such crucial support towards that goal, now and in the future.

For the animals,


Animals Australia