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Born Free USA Blog

Born Free USA Blog

It's trapping season and your dog or cat could be in danger

Published 12/15/09
By Monica Engebretson, Senior Program Associate

It’s fur trapping season in the U.S. again, and as always it comes with many non-target animals getting caught in traps.

Just in the last few weeks there has been a flurry and we know this is just the tip of the iceberg as most incidences go unreported.

Studies show that for every target animal caught in a trap at least 2 non-target animals — including cats and dogs and endangered species — are captured or killed.

The descriptions from the caretakers of the animal victims defy the trapping industry’s claim that these traps are humane ...

In Montana a dog caught in leghold trap:

Suddenly there was an odd “thump” followed by frantic yelping. My dog Rontu, a sweet and shy Norwegian Elkhound, had gotten caught in a leg-hold trap.

I quickly realized that I knew nothing about such traps and didn’t immediately know how to release it. Rontu was thrashing around hysterically, biting the trap and biting my hands as I tried to hold him still so I could see how to open it.

In Connecticut a protected owl had to be euthanized after being caught in a leghold trap”

The barred owl, a federally protected animal, was found stuck in a rusty leg-hold trap in Moodus by a resident Wednesday. The owl was emaciated, having been impaired for a long time and unable to hunt.

Wildlife rehabilitator Grace Krick captured the owl and cared for it over Thanksgiving. But the veterinarian she brought it to Friday morning determined that the owl’s injury was so severe, its foot would have to be amputated and it would never be released. In keeping with federal law, the owl was euthanized.

In Idaho another dog caught in a leghold trap:

Over the sounds of my chainsaw I heard the most bloodcurdling scream and howling of a hurt animal. I stopped my saw, looked down and saw that my little 10-month-old shelter dog had been caught in a leg-hold trap. Buddy was howling and jumping in excruciating pain like I have never heard.

In Wisconsin a feral cat caught in a leghold trap had to be euthanized because his injuries were so severe:

There was no salvaging that cat. He was in horrible, horrific pain.

Photo of cat

Sadly we know the list will go on and on before trapping season is over for the year, then it will still go on but in somewhat reduced frequency.

Born Free USA tracks non-target victims of trapping and maintains a database of incidences across the country. This information helps demonstrate why these devices need to be banned and especially kept off public lands including our National Wildlife Refuges.

Yeah, can you believe it? They allow these devices on wildlife refuges! — That's a whole other blog!

Blogging off,

Monica

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