Animal slaughter

JP1

Member
Livestock Farmer
Makes you think if he didn't make such a balls of doing it, would anyone have even asked about him having a licence.

However the whole situation sounds abit strange, what was going on for trading standards, a vet and a knacker man who can't aim, all to be there at the same time. Why didn't the vet just put it down?
My thoughts exactly
 

steveR

Member
Mixed Farmer
I was taught to shoot horses and cattle from the front to make a imaginary cross from right ear to left eye and left ear to right eye and where the cross meets you have the point of entry, i've never had a situation as described and i've never seen anyone shoot a large animal from behind how do you know for sure your in the right place you'll end up in the mess that chap was .
I have only seen cattle shot from the front.... 36g of shot at 12" tends to drop it immediately.

I wondered if there was some other reason behind the legislation.
 

unlacedgecko

Member
Livestock Farmer
We have had vets in to dispatch sheep in pain and they have done the job quickly and professionally. On one occasion, on the advice of our vet who was unable to kill an adult boar, we called in a rifleman from the knackers. Instead a chap turned up with a captive bolt gun who said it would be sufficient to do the job. It was not. After four shots and the boar screaming in pain for almost an hour, the rifleman was called in. For each shot I had to get into the pen to get the crazed animal (with tusks) near enough to the side of the pen to be shot. With me doing most of the work, the pig was eventually loaded onto the truck which left with a trail of blood down the road. I didn't ask whether the knackerman had WATOK training.

Captive bolt stunner is a suitable tool to humanely slaughter any farm animal in the UK.

However, the correct cartridge must be use, the operator must be properly trained and a good stun must be recognised, then followed up with pithing or bleeding.

I've used one for several hundred sheep and pigs over the years, including mature boars and sows. I've never experienced the situation you describe. It sounds like an underpowered cartridge was used, and/or the stunner was not in full close contact with the skull.

When despatching large pigs, the use of a wire snare around the top jaw is the safest way to manoeuvre the animal for the stunner.
 

unlacedgecko

Member
Livestock Farmer
Failed captive bolt stuns are attrociously inhumane, their use on farm should be banned IMO, yet the powers that be continue to insist that they're a humane slaughter device. The worst bit is the amount of untrained people out there who assume the captive bolt kills the animal, then fail to pith or stick the stunned beast afterwards (usually because they don't want to get their hands dirty) :(

Either buy a gun or find someone with a gun, stick the Blitz Kerner in the scrap metal bin where it belongs.

Why could the vet not do it?

The powers that be don't insist they're a humane slaughter device. It's very clearly stated in all of the DEFRA codes for animal welfare that captive bolt stunners are humane stunners only, and that following an effective stun the animal must be either pithed or bled.

Captive bolt stunners are ideal for large units with multiple staff members, as no licence is required so they can always be available for use. However, correct training is essential.

Wanting the tool banned due to improper use by untrained personnel is extremely shortsighted and will compromise animal welfare. If you are aware of individuals improperly using captive bolt stunners then you have a moral duty to correct the situation. Either issue training, report to the manager of the individual or involve the appropriate authorities.
 
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Bald Rick

Moderator
Livestock Farmer
Location
Anglesey
Totally agree.

I make this point as I asked a Vet once for something to put an old dog down. His response was that he did not carry anything for euthansing, which was a surprise.

Would have thought they all carry anaesthetic which is what they use

(Although there was a case a few years ago against a vet who used Mag Chloride in to the heart)
 

Werzle

Member
Location
Midlands
Twice in my life i have seen cows not shot correctly and its not nice, once as a kid i was sent to show a lad collecting fallen stock from the local kennels a downer cow and it took him three shots to kill it and once while working on a dairy farm as a teenager they had 5 knackers shot , and while the ppwork was being done one cow came back to life and was stood up on the others in the lorry. Luckily the people doing the job now are pro's and not numpties like they used to be . Shooting horses is worse than cows because there brain is higher up in the skull, heard of vets shooting them too low and missing or grazing the brain and having to do it again.
 

unlacedgecko

Member
Livestock Farmer
Twice in my life i have seen cows not shot correctly and its not nice, once as a kid i was sent to show a lad collecting fallen stock from the local kennels a downer cow and it took him three shots to kill it and once while working on a dairy farm as a teenager they had 5 knackers shot , and while the ppwork was being done one cow came back to life and was stood up on the others in the lorry. Luckily the people doing the job now are pro's and not numpties like they used to be . Shooting horses is worse than cows because there brain is higher up in the skull, heard of vets shooting them too low and missing or grazing the brain and having to do it again.

The huntsman at my local kennels is very good at despatching horses.
 

Dry Rot

Member
Livestock Farmer
I haven't read unlacedgeto's quote from DEFRA as it will apply to England and I'm in Scotland but I've always understood it was not illegal to kill your own animals. What is illegal is to kill animals belonging to someone else which is why slaughter men have to be licensed!

In fact, less than a month ago I had two police officers at my door following up on a complaint about "two dead horses and vicious dogs" on my land. I openly and promptly admitted to having shot two old horses which the cops quickly acknowledge as OK. "You are perfectly entitled to do so as they are your own property". I always put down my own animals as then I know it is done humanely. These two went down like a pack of cards as they were grazing in the field and neither knew anything about it. Horses are shot in the forehead but cattle are shot in the back of the head because their skulls are particularly thick in the front.

The police were also introduced to the "vicious dogs" who came out of the kennel with tails wagging to make friends. (Might have been different if they had tried to arrest me!). The police were duly impressed and said so. No problems.
 

farmerm

Member
Location
Shropshire

Paddington

Member
Location
Soggy Shropshire
Failed captive bolt stuns are attrociously inhumane, their use on farm should be banned IMO, yet the powers that be continue to insist that they're a humane slaughter device. The worst bit is the amount of untrained people out there who assume the captive bolt kills the animal, then fail to pith or stick the stunned beast afterwards (usually because they don't want to get their hands dirty) :(

Either buy a gun or find someone with a gun, stick the Blitz Kerner in the scrap metal bin where it belongs.

Why could the vet not do it?
Vet had a captive bolt gun, but in her opinion it was not sufficient to do the job.
 

Electricfencer

Member
Livestock Farmer
Location
Cotswolds
Iv shot 100’s of sheep with a bolt gun, Iv never done it wrong once. It’s nice to know that that animal will be dealt with a quickly as can be and not waiting for a knacker man or left to die slowly. I can’t believe some farmers pay to shot as hobby but won’t shot one of there own stock who is suffering.
 
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sidjon

Member
Location
EXMOOR
Would have thought they all carry anaesthetic which is what they use

(Although there was a case a few years ago against a vet who used Mag Chloride in to the heart)
Having seen it done during F and M, it wasn't quite as quick as the vet said (5 bottles later), I shoot ours, find vets aren't experienced enough ( last vet we had do a cow took 3 shots before I took the handgun off her and did it myself) and do live 5 minutes from local hunt kennels who are very good and if I'm not around they'll run out quick.
 

BAF

Member
Livestock Farmer
A 12g shotgun is a very effective tool to euthanase animals at close range, I can't remember but a 12g is something like .75 caliber which is a big hole! The shot column doesn't start to disperse immediately and acts like a solid slug and makes a large entry wound and causes a significant amount of trauma to the brain. It leaves quite a margin for error. Free bullets are also incredibly effective but need a little more accuracy. A humane killer requires extra steps to make sure the animal is dead.
 

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HSENI names new farm safety champions

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Written by William Kellett from Agriland

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The Health and Safety Executive for Northern Ireland (HSENI) alongside the Farm Safety Partnership (FSP), has named new farm safety champions and commended the outstanding work on farm safety that has been carried out in the farming community in the last 20 years.

Two of these champions are Malcom Downey, retired principal inspector for the Agri/Food team in HSENI and Harry Sinclair, current chair of the Farm Safety Partnership and former president of the Ulster Farmers’ Union (UFU).

Improving farm safety is the key aim of HSENI’s and the FSP’s work and...
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