There is no doubt that hunting with hounds is a vile blood sport. It involves men and women (and even children!) on horseback, with a pack of hounds, all in the gleeful pursuit of wild animals which will face agony when they are torn apart. This agony comes after they have already endured the horror of being pursued by dogs to the point of exhaustion.
You have no doubt seen harrowing footage or pictures of a pack of hounds tearing a defenceless fox, rabbit, mink or deer apart. You will also have heard the “defence” from the pro-hunting alliance that hunting with hounds is nothing more than a “wildlife management” service, which they are providing. They argue that what they are doing isn’t cruel at all. Most claim to be animal lovers, and dismiss all accusations of cruelty.
Not much is said about the fate of the hounds when it comes to debates about fox-hunting. The focus is nearly always kept on the fact that blood sports are vile, and have no place in civilised society. However, don’t think for one moment that the lack of empathy the pro-hunting fraternity has for wild animals isn’t evidenced when it comes to how they treat their hounds.
NFA found one former hunter turned animal rights activist, who was willing to go on camera and tell all about what goes on in hunts. As you can see in our film, what she told us about the fate of the hounds was horrifying. She knows that by appearing on camera she will face the wrath of her former hunting associates, and may also face anger from animal lovers who can’t believe she ever hunted in the first place. But she feels it is vital that people know what really goes on, and also what happens to the hounds. She urges you not to fall for the pro-hunting fraternity lies, which she once fell for. She has seen the truth first-hand, and is still haunted by it.
Theresa May has publically stated that she is pro-hunting, and a pledge to put a repeal of the Hunting Act is in the Conservative Party Manifesto. On Thursday, please remember that it is not just wild animals who suffer as a result of hunting with hounds. The dogs do too.
A vote for the Conservative Party could seal the the fate of these dogs, and indeed the fate of foxes, rabbits, mink, deer. It will be a vote for another badger cull, and a vote that sends our endangered species closer to extinction.