Animal Justice is calling for animal cruelty charges against a transporter after five pigs fell off a moving tractor trailer driving on the busy Highway 401 outside of Kingston, Ontario.
Two of the terrified pigs were found on a nearby county road, two pigs were found on highway offramp, and the last pig was found farther down the 401. A local horse rescue group arrived on the scene with a horse trailer to help the terrified animals, reporting that one of the pigs was injured with a visible road rash. The pigs, unfortunately, were returned to the original owner. Whether the pigs were treated, slaughtered, or euthanized is unknown.
The Ontario Provincial Police came to the scene, but laid only one charge against the driver of having an insecure load under the Highway Traffic Act. Causing animals to suffer during transport is a serious criminal offence, and it’s also illegal under federal animal transport regulations, and provincial animal protection laws. Shockingly, the OPP did not lay any charges that address the suffering the pigs endured.
Animal Justice and the Ontario SPCA and Humane Society have both filed animal cruelty complaints with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA), Ontario’s Chief Animal Welfare Inspector, and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food, and Rural Affairs, requesting that the agencies investigate the trucker and address the suffering endured by the pigs.
The CFIA is responsible for enforcing transport violations in relation to farmed animals, but regularly fails to prosecute illegal transport cruelty—often letting drivers and the meat industry off the hook even in the most egregious cases.
Even worse, Ontario has now passed so-called “ag gag” laws that make it difficult or illegal for citizens to document sick, dead, injured and dying farmed animals in trucks outside of slaughterhouses. This makes it challenging for the public to help get justice for pigs that suffer illegally during transport, and is all the more important for authorities to address transport cruelty when it does come to light.
Animal Justice also encourages citizens to report animal cruelty whenever they witness it, and to contact us for assistance.
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