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Animal welfare activists only seek to ban snares after a pet cat is hurt

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Animal welfare activists in the UK have decided to hate snare traps, after a young cat lost a leg to one, maybe.

In Sussex, a two year old cat named Tabitha went missing, and returned home with horrific injuries. Unfortunately, vets had to amputate one of her rear legs. Veterinary nurse Chloe Emmerson said “We did everything we could to try and save her leg but sadly the injuries to her paw were so bad that we had no other option but to remove her leg. No-one saw exactly what happened so we can’t say for sure it was a snare, but all the evidence points to that.” Hmm. This is the strongest argument we have against snares? 

In light of Tabitha’s suffering, Cats Protection and The League Against Cruel Sports have called for snares to be outlawed. The League’s deputy director of campaigns, Chris Pitt, says pet owners should be more ‘snare aware,’  so cats like Tabitha don’t get hurt. He goes on to mention that “Snares are indiscriminate – around 1.7million animals get caught in them every year, and although normally set to catch foxes and rabbits, two out of every three animals caught in these nooses are unintended quarry like dogs and cats.”

So why did it take an unintended victim to catalyst change? How are Tabitha’s injuries more insulting to people than the one’s inflicted on the foxes, rabbits, and wild animals we deem fair game?  I find it maddening that an accidental injury to a domesticated animal can cause the kind of uproar that unnecessary intentional capture and death deserves. We should imagine all creatures as capable of care, love, and freedom as we do our pets. 

Snare traps are archaic and I agree they should disappear, not to save our pets, but to save all animals.

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0 Comments
  • Emily

    The League have been calling for a snares ban for years. A quick Google would have shown you this. Maybe a little bit of research before posting nonsense like this?

    • Eva

      Thanks for filling me in, Emily. This is a response to another piece (as linked above). I never said The League hasn’t wanted a ban before, but that they and Cat’s Protection have been publicized in the original article highlighting this one cat. The much stronger critique here is of societies movement on these matters, and not the organizations. Thanks for reading!

  • andrey biryukov

    “So why did it take an unintended victim to catalyst change? How are Tabitha’s injuries more insulting to people than the one’s inflicted on the foxes, rabbits, and wild animals we deem fair game? I find it maddening that an accidental injury to a domesticated animal can cause the kind of uproar that unnecessary intentional capture and death deserves. We should imagine all creatures as capable of care, love, and freedom as we do our pets.”

    I believe the answer to your question would be that most of us have not developed empathy to broadly include the others in our narrowly defined family- or tribe-centered moral universes. Pets, who often are members of our families, therefore afforded the higher status than the foxes, rabbits and other wild animals, who are not. Our relational world views are predicated on our emphatic abilities to see ourselves in others and recognize the vital interests of others as we recognize our own. Without that important emotional component our rational brains are quick to justify our objectification and mistreatment of others whenever our own interests and needs, no matter how superfluous or shallow, are jeopardized or thwarted.

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