Animal welfare issues come to the fore in Cork

MINISTER for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney TD, announced a major animal welfare operation took place earlier today in Cork City, in conjunction with the Gardaí and Cork City Council.

Over 3,000 horses have been seized nationwide so far this year, with 247 impounded in the Cork area. The Minister was prompted to act after a number of incidents in the region, including dead horses scattered across sites and stray horses roaming public streets.

Horses will only be released back to owners if they have a passport, can prove they have paid the appropriate fees and have access to lands registered under the equine regulations.

Since May 2012, it has been a legal requirement that premises where equines are kept be registered with the Department. Registration is free and once-off

‘The purpose of registration is simply to enable the Department to have information on locations of horses and their contacts with other horses in order that in the event of a disease outbreak, owners can be alerted and advised of any necessary precautions,’ according to Association of Irish Riding Establishments.

The Minister reminded all horse owners of the importance of complying with legislation on horse welfare, identification and the registration of equine premises.

Simon Maguire