By Kate Dylewsky
Thanks to Tony Schinella for highlighting the danger that traps pose to non-targeted animals, including beloved household pets (“Activists Call for End to Conibear Trapping,” 12/5).
The bill that Rep. Vaillancourt plans to introduce will be a crucial opportunity to ban the cruelest forms of this “sport.” Trapping is a barbaric, antiquated form of hunting that should have been outlawed long ago.
Animals caught in body-gripping traps suffer immensely from their injuries, long periods of distress, and ultimately a sad death. Many even gnaw off their own limb in an effort to escape, often dying of a painful infection days later. Archaic killing methods for trapped animals – such as suffocation, drowning and chest crushing – are widely used today. As the story about Andrew the dog demonstrated, many animals are injured or die as “collateral damage,” including endangered species and family pets. Human injuries have also been known to occur.
Born Free USA maintains a database of U.S. trapping incidents that details hundreds of tragic instances of cats and dogs severely injured or killed in traps, which is accessible through bornfreeusa.org. Several of these incidents have occurred in NH, and even one injury or death is far too many. I hope that Rep. Vaillancourt’s bill passes successfully, for the sake of public safety and animal welfare in the state.
Kate Dylewsky, Program Assistant, Born Free USA