CHENNAI: The Madras High Court’s suggestion to ban cockfighting has upset the sport’s enthusiasts, but animal rights activists are applauding it. They also want such bans on horse racing and dog shows.
They are concerned about such events as a large number of and horses are treated cruelly while being trained for these shows and races.
“During the competitions, dog trainers and breeders force the animals to parade under scorching heat, which affects their health. Besides, in the name of training, the dogs are made to do rigorous exercises for a long time to win the competitions,” said Kalpana Vasudevan, managing trustee, People for Animals, Coimbatore Unit II and honorary officer of Animal Welfare Board of India.
“We are still not clear for what purpose dog shows are conducted. Dog breeders and owners enter them in the shows to earn large sums as prize money. We are totally against dog shows. We hope a ban would be imposed on these events like the Supreme Court’s ban on Jallikattu and Rekla Race,” she added.
She also claimed that after the strong opposition from NGOs to the use of animals in cinemas, had led to cruelty to animals coming down in recent times.
Mini Vasudevan of Humane Animal Society, an NGO, pointed out that there is a government order to set up branches of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) in all districts to monitor the treatment of animals. However, these have not been functioning properly. District collectors, who are in charge of the SPCA branches, should take immediate steps to constitute them and protect animals.
“Incidents of cruelty to animals are being reported regularly from every street,” she added.
According to her, cruelty to dogs and horses is less when compared with what bulls undergo in Jallikattu and Rekla Race. The nature of a horse is to run. Unlike bulls, they do not lie down for long hours.
“But we are against use of such animals for commercial activities. A committee should be formed to monitor cruelty to horses and other animals used in competitions,” she said.
It is every citizen’s duty to protect the life of animals but we are not doing so. Human attitudes towards animals need a great change, she added.