Leading animal welfare campaigns charity, OneKind, is calling on members of the public to report any snares they find while out walking in Scotland.
OneKind has long campaigned for a ban on the use, sale and manufacture of the traps, and urges walkers to report snares or snaring incidents to its dedicated snare awareness website, SnareWatch.
Snares are cruel traps used to catch predators, mainly foxes, to gamebirds. However, snares are indiscriminate to the species caught and kill badgers, otters, deer and even pet cats and dogs.
A few weeks ago, Heather Thomas Smith’s was walking her mother’s dog on the moorland above Skipness when he became trapped in a snare. He let out a ‘terrible noise’ as he struggled to set himself free and even Heather struggled to loosen the snare. While, Heather’s mother’s dog, luckily escaped without injury, Gillian Clancy’s dog, Jaffa, sadly did not. Jaffa, was out walking in a field in Whitley, Wiltshire, when he returned to his dog walker with a ‘hole in his chest and a large flap of skin hanging down exposing his muscle and nerves’. The vet that examined him said his injuries were consistent him having become entangled in a snare and subsequently escaping.
OneKind’s Director Bob Elliot said:
“Snares are cruel, indiscriminate traps that, literally, originate from the Stone Age, and that’s where they belong. These traps inflict considerable physical and mental suffering upon the animals caught in them, and if an animal panics and attempts to set itself free, the snare may tighten around them, leading to injury or death.
“We urge anyone out walking in Scotland to take photos and report any snares or snaring incidents to us so we can establish the true reality of snare use in our countryside, and the suffering these outdated traps are having on our beautiful wild animals.
“OneKind has long campaigned for a ban on the sale, manufacture and use of snares in Scotland and our petition for a ban on snares and other traps is currently being considered by the Scottish Government. We have also produced a report, ‘Untold Suffering’, that details the scale and level of suffering inflicted on wild animals by these antiquated traps, highlighting why a ban is necessary. You just can’t regulate for cruelty like this.”