Animal Voice, Issue 02, 2016
Campaign newsletter of the Irish Council Against Blood Sports

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01. 114 TDs shamefully vote against bill to ban coursing
02. Report reveals latest victims of Ireland's cruel hare coursing
03. Irish Army invited foxhunters on to Curragh
04. Pavee Point condemns hare coursing as "cruel activity which we oppose"
05. Barbaric hare coursing is not a blood sport, it’s a blood industry
06. ICABS campaign videos viewed over 1 million times
07. Eurocamp removes suggestion to visit French bullfighting festival
08. Donedeal urged to reject hunting dogs advert
09. Judge eulogises foxhunters during court case
10. "Mockery of democracy": Columnist condemns Dail rejection of coursing bill
11. The TDs who said they were against coursing - but voted against a ban
12. Anti-coursing Sinn Fein leader votes against coursing ban
13. "Fianna Fáil does not support the bill which would ban live hare coursing"
14. JP McManus pulls sponsorship from hare coursing
15. “Insane grants” to greyhound industry must be stopped
16. Irish Rail urged to investigate latest images of hunters on railway line
17. Calls for ban on gruesome geese-decapitation festival
18. Breeder who tried to export 24 greyhounds to China is a hare courser
19. Mick Barry TD calls for ban on export of greyhounds to Macau
20. Minister Creed failing to take action to stop export of greyhounds to China
21. We need a referendum on 'rural pursuits' to tackle animal welfare issues
22. Lactating Irish hare killed by lurcher: Turkish hunter convicted and fined
23. Latest Dail Questions and Answers
24. Letters to the Editor
25. Campaign Quotes
26. Petitions - Please sign and share

01. 114 TDs shamefully vote against bill to ban coursing

Members of Dail Eireann have once again shamefully betrayed Ireland's wildlife. On 30th June in parliament, TDs voted 114 - 20 to reject Maureen O'Sullivan TD's bill to ban hare coursing.

We applaud the 20 TDs who stood up for Irish wildlife and supported the bill. Shame on the 114 who disregarded the suffering, injury and death caused to hares in coursing and voted against the bill. Please see below to find out which way TDs voted.

The rejection of the bill comes despite a majority of Irish citizens, and many more around the world, favouring a ban on hare coursing. Thank you for your support of our campaign which will continue until this appalling cruelty is finally outlawed...

Animal Protection (in relation to Hares) Bill 2015: Second Stage (Resumed) [Private Members] 30th June 2016


Independents: 8 TDs
People Before Profit: 4 TDs
Anti Austerity Alliance: 3 TDs
Social Democrats: 3 TDs
Green Party: 2 TDs

Mick Barry (Anti Austerity Alliance, Cork North Central)
Richard Boyd Barrett (People Before Profit Alliance, Dún Laoghaire)
Tommy Broughan (Independent, Party Dublin Bay North)
Joan Collins (People Before Profit Alliance, Dublin South Central)
Catherine Connolly (Independent, Galway West)
Ruth Coppinger (Anti Austerity Alliance, Dublin West)
Clare Daly (Independent, Dublin Fingal)
Stephen Donnelly (Social Democrats, Wicklow)
John Halligan (Independent, Waterford)
Gino Kenny (People Before Profit Alliance, Dublin Mid West)
Catherine Martin (Green Party, Dublin Rathdown)
Finian McGrath (Independent, Dublin Bay North)
Catherine Murphy (Social Democrats, Kildare North)
Paul Murphy (Anti Austerity Alliance, Dublin South West)
Maureen O'Sullivan (Independent, Dublin Central)
Shane Ross (Independent, Dublin Rathdown)
Eamon Ryan (Green Party, Dublin Bay South)
Róisín Shortall (Social Democrats, Dublin North West)
Bríd Smith (People Before Profit Alliance, Dublin South Central)
Mick Wallace (Independent, Wexford)


Fine Gael: 46 TDs
Fianna Fail: 36 TDs
Sinn Fein: 16 TDs
Labour Party: 5 TDs
Independents: 11 TDs

Gerry Adams (Sinn Fein, Louth)
Bobby Aylward (Fianna Fail, Carlow Kilkenny)
Maria Bailey (Fine Gael, Dún Laoghaire)
Sean Barrett (Fine Gael, Dún Laoghaire)
John Brassill (Fianna Fail, Kerry County)
Declan Breathnach (Fianna Fail, Louth)
Pat Breen (Fine Gael, Clare)
Colm Brophy (Fine Gael, Dublin South West)
James Browne (Fianna Fail, Wexford)
Richard Bruton (Fine Gael, Dublin Bay North)
Pat Buckley (Sinn Fein, Cork East)
Peter Burke (Fine Gael, Longford Westmeath)
Joan Burton (Labour Party, Dublin West)
Mary Butler (Fianna Fail, Waterford)
Catherine Byrne (Fine Gael, Dublin South Central)
Thomas Byrne (Fianna Fail, Meath East)
Jackie Cahill (Fianna Fail, Tipperary)
Dara Calleary (Fianna Fail, Mayo)
Sean Canney (Independent, Galway East)
Ciaran Cannon (Fine Gael, Galway East)
Joe Carey (Fine Gael, Clare)
Pat Casey (Fianna Fail, Wicklow)
Shane Cassells (Fianna Fail, Meath West)
Lisa Chambers (Fianna Fail, Mayo)
Jack Chambers (Fianna Fail, Dublin West)
Niall Collins (Fianna Fail, Limerick County)
Michael Collins (Independent, Cork South West)
Marcella Corcoran Kennedy (Fine Gael, Offaly)
Simon Coveney (Fine Gael, Cork South Central)
Barry Cowen (Fianna Fail, Offaly)
David Cullinane (Sinn Fein, Waterford)
John Curran (Fianna Fail, Dublin Mid West)
Michael D’Arcy (Fine Gael, Wexford)
Jim Daly (Fine Gael, Cork South West)
John Deasy (Fine Gael, Waterford)
Patrick Deering (Fine Gael, Carlow Kilkenny)
Regina Doherty (Fine Gael, Meath East)
Pearse Doherty (Sinn Fein, Donegal)
Paschal Donohoe (Fine Gael, Dublin Central)
Timmy Dooley (Fianna Fail, Clare)
Andrew Doyle (Fine Gael, Wicklow)
Bernard Durkan (Fine Gael, Kildare North)
Damien English (Fine Gael, Meath West)
Martin Ferris (Sinn Fein, Kerry County)
Frances Fitzgerald (Fine Gael, Dublin Mid West)
Michael Fitzmaurice (Independent, Roscommon Galway)
Peter Fitzpatrick (Fine Gael, Louth)
Charles Flanagan (Fine Gael, Laois)
Sean Fleming (Fianna Fail, Laois)
Brendan Griffin (Fine Gael, Kerry County)
Simon Harris (Fine Gael, Wicklow)
Michael Harty (Independent, Clare)
Sean Haughey (Fianna Fail, Dublin Bay North)
Seamus Healy (Unemployed Action Group, Tipperary)
Michael Healy-Rae (Independent, Kerry County)
Danny Healy-Rae (Independent, Kerry County)
Martin Heydon (Fine Gael, Kildare South)
Brendan Howlin (Labour Party, Wexford)
Paul Kehoe (Fine Gael, Wexford)
Enda Kenny (Fine Gael, Mayo)
Martin Kenny (Sinn Fein, Sligo Leitrim)
Seán Kyne (Fine Gael, Galway West)
John Lahart (Fianna Fail, Dublin South West)
Michael Lowry (Independent, Tipperary)
Marc MacSharry (Fianna Fail, Sligo Leitrim)
Josepha Madigan (Fine Gael, Dublin Rathdown)
Micheál Martin (Fianna Fail, Cork South Central)
Mary Lou McDonald (Sinn Fein, Dublin Central)
Helen McEntee (Fine Gael, Meath East)
Michael McGrath (Fianna Fail, Cork South Central)
Mattie McGrath (Independent, Tipperary)
John McGuinness (Fianna Fail, Carlow Kilkenny)
Tony McLoughlin (Fine Gael, Sligo Leitrim)
Denise Mitchell (Sinn Fein, Dublin Bay North)
Mary Mitchell O'Connor (Fine Gael, Dún Laoghaire)
Kevin “Boxer” Moran (Independent, Longford Westmeath)
Michael Moynihan (Fianna Fail, Cork North West)
Imelda Munster (Sinn Fein, Louth)
Dara Murphy (Fine Gael, Cork North Central)
Eoghan Murphy (Fine Gael, Dublin Bay South)
Eugene Murphy (Fianna Fail, Roscommon Galway)
Margaret Murphy-O’Mahony (Fianna Fail, Cork South West)
Denis Naughten (Independent, Roscommon Galway)
Hildegarde Naughten (Fine Gael, Galway West)
Tom Neville (Fine Gael, Limerick County)
Carol Nolan (Sinn Fein, Offaly)
Michael Noonan (Fine Gael, Limerick City)
Éamon Ó Cuív (Fianna Fail, Galway West)
Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire (Sinn Fein, Cork South Central)
Aengus Ó Snodaigh (Sinn Fein, Dublin South Central)
Jim O’Callaghan (Fianna Fail, Dublin Bay South)
Kate O’Connell (Fine Gael, Dublin Bay South)
Kevin O’Keeffe (Fianna Fail, Cork East)
Fiona O’Loughlin (Fianna Fail, Kildare South)
Louise O’Reilly (Sinn Fein, Dublin Fingal)
Frank O’Rourke (Fianna Fail, Kildare North)
Willie O'Dea (Fianna Fail, Limerick City)
Patrick O'Donovan (Fine Gael, Limerick County)
Fergus O'Dowd (Fine Gael, Louth)
Willie Penrose (Labour Party, Longford Westmeath)
John Paul Phelan (Fine Gael, Carlow Kilkenny)
Maurice Quinlivan (Sinn Fein, Limerick City)
Anne Rabbitte (Fianna Fail, Galway East)
Michael Ring (Fine Gael, Mayo)
Noel Rock (Fine Gael, Dublin North West)
Brendan Ryan (Labour Party, Dublin Fingal)
Eamon Scanlon (Fianna Fail, Sligo Leitrim)
Sean Sherlock (Labour Party, Cork East)
Brendan Smith (Fianna Fail, Cavan Monaghan)
Brian Stanley (Sinn Fein, Laois)
David Stanton (Fine Gael, Cork East)
Peadar Tóibín (Sinn Fein, Meath West)
Robert Troy (Fianna Fail, Longford Westmeath)
Dr. Leo Varadkar (Fine Gael, Dublin West)


24 TDs chose to abstain or were not present to vote.

Fine Gael: 4 TDs
Fianna Fail: 8 TDs
Sinn Fein: 7 TDs
Labour Party: 2 TDs
Independents: 3 TDs

John Brady (Sinn Fein, Wicklow)
Michael Creed (Fine Gael, Cork North West)
Sean Crowe (Sinn Fein, Dublin South West)
Dessie Ellis (Sinn Fein, Dublin North West)
Alan Farrell (Fine Gael, Dublin Fingal)
Kathleen Funchion (Sinn Fein, Carlow Kilkenny)
Pat The Cope Gallagher (Fianna Fail, Donegal)
Noel Grealish (Independent, Galway West)
Heather Humphreys (Fine Gael, Cavan Monaghan)
Billy Kelleher (Fianna Fail, Cork North Central)
Alan Kelly (Labour Party, Tipperary)
James Lawless (Fianna Fail, Kildare North)
Charlie McConalogue (Fianna Fail, Donegal)
Joe McHugh (Fine Gael, Donegal)
Aindrias Moynihan (Fianna Fail, Cork North West)
Eoin Ó Broin (Sinn Fein, Dublin Mid West)
Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin (Sinn Fein, Cavan Monaghan)
Seán O Fearghaíl (Fianna Fail, Kildare South)
Darragh O’Brien (Fianna Fail, Dublin Fingal)
Jonathan O'Brien (Sinn Fein, Cork North Central)
Jan O'Sullivan (Labour Party, Limerick City)
Thomas Pringle (Independent, Donegal)
Niamh Smyth (Fianna Fail, Cavan Monaghan)
Katherine Zappone (Independent, Dublin South West)


02. Report reveals latest victims of Ireland's cruel hare coursing

Very shortly, the Minister for Arts, Heritage, Heather Humphreys will be making a decision on whether to grant a licence to the Irish Coursing Club and its 75 affiliated coursing clubs to snatch thousands of hares from the wild for use as live lures before greyhounds at coursing meetings, which will begin in October and continue right up to the end of next February. The netting will begin in August and the hares, cruelly snatched from the wild in nets, will be kept captive in coursing compounds, where they will endure the stress of being corralled and so-called "trained" to run the course and find the escape area. Some hares taken from the wild will be pregnant or lactating females with young leverets left behind in the wild, and it is not uncommon for leverets to be born in coursing compounds.

It is truly appalling that our Minister for Arts & Heritage, with responsibility for wildlife, would countenance the abuse of the Irish hare, an iconic species, so called "protected" under the Wildlife Act.

This year, as with every other year, documents obtained by ICABS under FOI reveal that captive hares continue to be struck, mauled, injured and killed by greyhounds at coursing meetings.

For example at Tubbercurry last January, it was noted by the National Parks ranger that 14 hares were hit, 12 injured, six badly, with 1 dying of its injuries and 3 more put down. At Old Kilcullen last December 2015, 7 hares were struck, with 3 dying of injuries, according to the coursers; at Co. Kerry coursing, 3 hares were struck with 2 being put down; at Dundalk 3 hares were struck with 2 dying of injuries; at Macroom 6 hares “required assistance” according to the coursers, a euphemism for being struck and mauled, with 3 being put down; at Mooncoin, 5 hares “required assistance” and 1 was put down; at Ardpatrick & Kilfinane, where an ICABS monitor was assaulted and had a camera taken, 3 hares “required assistance” and 2 were put down; at Ennis Clarecastle, 5 hares were struck, 3 injured, I died due to injury and 2 were put down because of injuries; at New Ross 7 hares were hit, 4 injured and 1 put down; at Rathcormac, 2 hares “required assistance” with 1 being put down; at Balbriggan, 2 hares “required assistance” with 1 dying of its injuries; at Cavan 7 hares “required assistance”, with 1 dying from injuries; at Clonmel & Kilsheelan 3 hares “required assistance” with 1 dying from its injuries; at Cork coursing club 4 hares “required assistance”, with 1 dying of its injuries; at East Donegal, that 7 hares were struck by greyhounds, but the coursers stated that no hares were hit over the two days. The ranger noted in a memo that on the second day of coursing “the club committee agreed to cancel two of the races ……. as they thought that the weather had taken its toll on the hares”. He added that “on the morning of the first day’s coursing there were three dead hares in the hare paddocks; at Bandon & Mitchelstown 5 hares “required assistance”, with 5 requiring treatment by vet, and 1 dying of injuries; at Liscannor 1 hare “required assistance” and died; At Templetuohy 6 hares “required assistance” and 1 died of “natural causes”; at Trim 1 hare “required assistance” and 1 hare died of injuries; at Wexford coursing meeting, Ranger stated that 6 hares hit by dogs, 1 put down because of injuries.

There was hardly a meeting where hares were not struck by the dogs, but interestingly, at the national finals of coursing in Clonmel, over the three days of coursing, and where they had 188 hares in captivity, the coursers claimed to have not even struck one hare. Crucially this meeting was not overseen by a ranger from the National Parks & Wildlife Service.

Read the full report at


Express your support for a ban on coursing. Sign and share our petition

Stop Licensing Cruel Hare Coursing

Contact Minister Heather Humphreys now and urge her stop licensing hare coursing

Heather Humphreys, TD
Minister for Arts, Heritage and Gaeltacht Affairs
Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
23 Kildare Street
Dublin 2

Tel: +353 (0)1 631 3802 or +353 (0)1 631 3800
Leave a comment on Facebook -
Tweet to @HHumphreysFG

(If you have time, please compose your own personal letter. Otherwise, feel free to send the short sample letter below. Be assertive, but polite, in all correspondence. Thank you.)

Dear Minister,

I am one of the majority who want hare coursing outlawed. I am writing to urge you to stop licensing this bloodsport.

In coursing, hares suffer and die at all stages - during the capture, during the time they are kept in captivity and during the coursing meetings where they run for their lives in front of greyhounds. Among the injuries recorded are broken legs, damaged toes and dislocated hips.

I ask you to please act on the wishes of the majority, show compassion and refuse to licence this cruelty.

Thank you.

Yours sincerely,



03. Irish Army invited foxhunters on to Curragh

In January, we reported on the Irish Army's shameful hosting of a foxhunting meet at its Curragh headquarters in County Kildare. Responding to a complaint at the time, ICABS was told by an army representative that the hunt's presence at the Curragh would have been as a result of the hunt applying for permission to come on to army property.

It has emerged, however, that it was the Irish Army which actually invited the hunters in.

Documents obtained by the Irish Council Against Blood Sports show that a Captain Johnny Dicker emailed the Defence Forces Property Management seeking permission for a "lawn meet for Kildare Foxhounds to be hosted by GOC, DFTC [General Officer Commanding, Defence Forces Training Centre]".

The email dated 12th October 2015 states: "Previously I have spoken to GOC DFTC in relation to hosting a lawn meet for the Kildare Hunt Club. At the recent coffee afternoon for equine stakeholders, the GOC said he would be in favour of hosting this event. This event has taken place for many decades now. The DFTC has a long relationship with the 'Kildares' and their link to Punchestown."

Captain Dicker goes on to suggest an itinerary for the hunt's visit: "Having spoken to the 'Kildares' and the GOC, I would like to propose this event takes place on Monday 23 November 2015. I would like to suggest the following timetable, subject to approval:

10.15 MPs Mess open for light refreshments
10.30 Main body of 'Kidares' begin arriving
11.15 Hunt club mount-up
11.20 Photo shoot of GOC, Huntsman, Hounds and Horses
11.30 Hunt club move off to Cut Bush area
15.00 Ceannt Officers Mess or MPs Mess open for refreshments (This is subject to weather and location where hunt finishes up)"

Captain Dickers attaches the hunt's insurance policy to his email, saying "in previous years, this has been required by DFTC HQ for onward passage to Executive Branch, DFTC."

Responding to the request, a Sheila Slevin states "Hi Johnny. The Department approves this request"

The Irish Council Against Blood Sports is outraged that not only did the Irish Army host a foxhunt meet at their Curragh Camp HQ but they initiated the invitation.

According to a report in the Irish Field, a number of Army officers took part in the barbarism and officers in army fatigues were pictured with the foxhunters. See the photograph at

The report outlined that “the Irish Army were out in force for the Kildare Foxhounds meet at the Curragh Camp,” and that personnel were involved in the organising of the hunt. Given that foxhunting was very much a British tradition, Eamonn Ceannt, one of the signatories of the 1916 Rising, would no doubt have been turning in his at grave at the sight of horse-boxes arriving in Ceannt Square at the Curragh Camp, and the foxhunters indulging in finger food and refreshments at the officers’ mess. Ironically, Britain has over a decade ago outlawed foxhunting, leaving Ireland as the last outpost of barbarism in these islands.

The Irish Field report went on to detail how foxes were pursued by hounds and “marked to ground” which indicates that they would have sought refuge underground. We can only speculate as to what happened these foxes after this, but generally terriermen, who are an integral part of the hunt, arrive with spades and terriers to dig down to the fox, using the terriers to flush it out, resulting in underground battles with fox and terrier, and the ultimate death of the fox.

As we commemorate 1916, it is an absolute disgrace that the Irish Army would be involved in such a barbaric bloodsport. One hundred years after they laid down their lives for our country, the Irish Army taking part in a foxhunt is hardly what our 1916 patriots would have envisaged.

In a 1967 letter to founder member of the Irish Council Against Blood Sports, actor John Cowley (aka Tom Riordan of ‘The Riordans’), Senator Margaret Pearse – sister of Padraic Pearse – wrote from her nursing home, aged 89, that both of her brothers, Padraic and Willie, would have been opposed to animal cruelty. Senator Pearse stated: “all bloodsports are repugnant to me and I think that they have a debasing effect on all those who take part in them”.

Out of respect for the martyrs and patriots of 1916, and for the vast majority of Irish people who oppose cruel bloodsports, we renew our call to the Irish Army to cease their involvement in this barbaric activity.


Sign and share our petition
Irish Army: Stop allowing cruel foxhunting on your land

Call on the Irish Army to stop participating in foxhunting and stop inviting foxhunters on to its property. Send a copy of your message to Taoiseach Enda Kenny (Minister for Defence).

Defence Forces Headquarters
Ceannt Barracks,
Curragh Camp,
Co Kildare
Tel: 045 44 5306
Leave a comment on Facebook
Tweet to @defenceforces

An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny
Minister for Defence
Government Buildings,
Upper Merrion Street,
Dublin 2
Telephone: 01-6194020
Tweet to @EndaKennyTD


04. Pavee Point condemns hare coursing as "cruel activity which we oppose"

The Irish Council Against Blood Sports has called for a Garda investigation into a hare coursing-related incident captured by a photographer documenting the lives of Irish travellers.

In a collection of images displayed on his website, photographer Stephen Gerard Kelly includes one of a man holding up a hare which he is about to release for dogs to chase. The caption on the photo states: "Hare coursing is a popular past time among Irish Travellers. Tommy (28), an Irish Traveller, holds a large hare while his son prepares the dogs to chase the hare once released."

In a second gruesome image, "a lurcher eats the hare it caught".

As hare coursing without a licence is prohibited under the Wildlife Act, ICABS has also brought the sickening images to the attention of the National Parks and Wildlife Service and asked them to investigate.

Responding to the images, travellers' rights organisation, Pavee Point, condemned hare coursing as a "cruel activity which we oppose". In a tweet to ICABS, the charity stated: "Hare coursing is NOT a popular past time among Travellers."

The two images can be viewed at


05. Barbaric hare coursing is not a blood sport, it’s a blood industry

FERGUS FINLAY: Barbaric hare coursing is not a blood sport, it’s a blood industry
Irish Examiner, July 05, 2016

We really can’t pretend that hare coursing is about some notion of rural living and culture, writes Fergus Finlay.

What a civilised country we are. The most staggeringly beautiful country in the world, with the most decent and welcoming people. Except when we’re engaged in doublethink.

Last Sunday, I visited a privately owned farm, open to the public, that had some of the most stunningly beautiful landscape I’ve ever seen. Sheep and lambs were grazing in an idyllic field and, as we arrived, a couple of lambs were being gently bottle-fed. The care and the respect for the animals was obvious and palpable.

Yet, during the past couple of weeks, the Dáil debated a bill designed to end one of the most barbarous things we allow under law— the coursing of live hares. And it voted almost unanimously to allow the practice to continue. Only 20 members supported the Bill — all of the major parties, Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael, Labour, and Sinn Féin, voted against it. And, as far as I can tell, all of the main parties applied the whip to ensure that the cruel practice of hare coursing was allowed to continue.

It makes Ireland one of only three countries in Europe where hares are allowed to be killed for sport. The other two are Spain and Portugal, which of course also allow bulls to be killed in front of an audience for sport.

Ireland is unique in one way, though. The Irish mountain hare is a protected species — not just under Irish law, but also under a European directive and an international convention. So we are the only country in Europe that allows the killing in front of an audience of one of our protected species — and applies a parliamentary whip to ensure it continues.

We may be unique in another respect too. We routinely lie to ourselves about hare coursing. Some years ago, we decided to muzzle the dogs, who used to tear the hares limb from limb, and ever since then we have chosen to believe that the hares don’t die, that the stress and terror to which this naturally timid animal is subjected is somehow good for them.

Try telling that to people such as the ones that run places like Gleninchaquin, near Kenmare, Co Kerry. I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of it — I hadn’t, until a couple of us stumbled on it, almost by accident, on Sunday. There are famous and well-known waterfall landmarks in Ireland — Torc, Powerscourt — but the 120m-high waterfall in Gleninchaquin is as beautiful as you’ll see anywhere.

I think the term is striated. The water falls straight down from one layer of rock to the next, and the layers are each cut sharp, as if by knife. It’s a striking effect, and the ever-present noise is incredibly peaceful — not roaring like some of the great waterfalls, but rumbling gently.

When you turn your back to the waterfall you find yourself gazing out over wide, level pasture to a still, blue lake that seems to go on forever. It’s an amazing sanctuary, this place, and clearly one where all of nature is valued and respected.

Unlike Dáil Éireann. Here, for example, is the Sinn Féin representative, Martin Kenny, speaking during the debate on whether or not to ban coursing.

“The banning of hare coursing would drive it underground, as has happened in many other countries [he didn’t get around to identifying them]. This is not like blood sports, by which I mean dog fighting, badger baiting, or cock fighting, which we all continue to oppose.”

It’s good news, I suppose, that Sinn Féin is still opposed to cock fighting and badger baiting. But it requires deeply twisted logic in the first place to dig up ancient brutalities like these in order to make the point that they meet the definition of blood sports, and then to go on and argue, as Mr Kenny did, that hunting and fishing don’t. How much blood has to be guaranteed, I wonder, before a sport is a blood sport.

I’m not singling out Sinn Féin for special attention here. The Labour Party couldn’t bring itself to add anything to the debate, but trooped into the lobbies to kill off the bill anyway. Most of the Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael speakers, and some of the rural Independents, fell back on the hoary old chestnut about driving the industry underground. Mattie McGrath talked about the wonderful spectacle involved, enjoyed by adults and children alike.

The bottom line, of course, isn’t about things going underground. The bottom line is that coursing isn’t a blood sport, it’s a blood industry.

Coursing, and more generally greyhounds, makes lots of money. It is and always has been supported by the State. For years, a significant amount of tax revenue was ring-fenced every year for investment in a thing called the Horse and Greyhound Industry Fund. It has never been possible to successfully ring-fence an allocation for disability or mental health services, but horses and greyhounds have always had their little bit of tax revenue guaranteed.

This year, about €15m of your money and mine will be ploughed into the greyhounds, (along with nearly €70m going to the gee-gees). We have a dedicated Minister of State for the Dogs, Tom Hayes, and he said he wants to see that extra money being spent on “encouraging participation in the sport”.

Of course, I must emphasise that he is talking in the main about greyhound racing, not coursing, and the taxpayers’ money goes to Bord na gCon, and not the Irish Coursing Club. But the sponsorship, the betting, the huge attendances at premier events, all make coursing an indispensable part of the industry.

The thing about us is that we do love nature, we do love animals, we’re really proud of rural Ireland — its peace and tranquillity, its unspoiled beauty. But we really can’t pretend that something as bound up with money and profit as hare coursing is about some notion of rural living and culture.

Personally, although I could think of much better ways to spend the money, I’d be prepared to see an extra €5m a year go into the greyhound industry to encourage more people to go greyhound racing, but only if every vested interest involved was willing to see an end to coursing.

We are a civilised, hospitable, and decent people. I meet that warmth everywhere, and I have reason to be grateful every day in my work for that decency. But we have somehow or other managed to persuade ourselves that an activity that involves terrorising defenceless animals to the point of death is just as civilised as everything else we do.

It’s not. Hare coursing is something to be ashamed of, not proud of. And the imposing of a party whip on a vote about hare coursing, amid all the blather and pompous talk about new politics and new ways of doing things, makes a nonsense of all that talk.

I don’t believe that (for instance) Mary Lou McDonald, Leo Varadkar, and Joan Burton really find it OK that animals should be terrorised in the name of sport. But they voted for it, along with the majority. We all became a bit less civilised as a result.

We really can’t pretend that hare coursing is about some notion of rural living and culture


06. ICABS campaign videos viewed over 1 million times

The Irish Council Against Blood Sports is delighted to announce that our campaign videos on Youtube have been collectively viewed over 1 million times. This important milestone for our channel represents a massive advance in the levels of awareness surrounding blood sport cruelty.

Through our video presentations, viewers from Ireland and around the world have witnessed the suffering inflicted on animals by hunters and hare coursers. The overwhelming response remains one of disgust and also disbelief that such animal abuse continues to be allowed here.

Also proving popular on the site are our specially compiled playlists which feature delightful footage of animals living free in nature. We are confident that these will help increase interest in, and respect for, wildlife and lead to even more opposition to activities which deliberately inflict suffering. Among the playlists currently available are Foxes around the world, Nature in Ireland and Badgers. Visit and subscribe to our Youtube Channel today at

Please help raise awareness about Ireland's bloodsports cruelty by sharing the videos online and sending the links to politicians to show them why they must support a ban on bloodsports.


07. Eurocamp removes suggestion to visit French bullfighting festival

The Irish Council Against Blood Sports has thanked holiday company, Eurocamp, for withdrawing a suggestion to visit a bullfighting festival in the south of France.

Deleted from its list of "6 reasons to visit Languedoc-Roussillon" was the statement "If you’re visiting during mid-August you’re in for a treat: the Feria de Béziers bullfighting festival, which is one of the biggest and best festivals in the South of France."

The move came after we highlighted the cruelty of bullfighting and the fact that the Association of British Travel Agents categorises bullfighting as an "unacceptable practice".

In its Animal Welfare Guidelines, ABTA states: “Bullfighting is a traditional spectacle in Spain, Portugal, southern France and in some Latin American countries. Some regard bullfighting as a sport, an art form or a cultural tradition. Increasingly, however, it is perceived as a barbaric practice, which usually results in the painful and protracted killing of the bull in front of an audience (except in Portugal, where the bull is slaughtered outside the arena). In 2011, the Spanish region of Catalonia banned bullfighting. Customers should not be encouraged to attend bullfighting or any other festival (e.g. bull running, famously in Pamplona) where bulls are harmed as part of the entertainment. Suppliers should not offer or support this activity.”

A big thumbs up to Eurocamp for its positive response. Find out more about the company and its offers at

Eurocamp joins a growing list of companies which have responded positively to ICABS appeals and removed references to bullfighting or bullrings. These include American Airlines, Aer Lingus, EasyJet, Ryanair Magazine, Jet2holidays, Marriott International, Hilton Hampton, Ebookers, Club Travel, Abbey Travel, Sunways, Low Cost, Travel Department, Cancun Holidays Information Center, Co-op Travel, Ultimate Travel, No Fly Cruising, City Breaks 101, Original Travel, Escape Trips, Charter Travel, NY.T.Roma Hotel, Exclusive GP, Just Resorts,, Burleigh Travel, Abercrombie & Kent, Holiday Transfers, Iglu Cruise, Oliver's Travel's, StagWeb, Joe Walsh Tours, Budget Travel, Osprey Holidays,, Hays Travel, Le Boat, Holiday Hypermarket, Pack Your Bags, USIT Travel, Euroventure, Netflights,, LateDeals, Stagit, Sports Travel Guru and Ticmate.


08. Donedeal urged to reject hunting dogs advert

Please join us in urging classified ads company, DoneDeal, to show compassion for Irish wildlife and reject an advert for a pack of hunting hounds.

In the ad, the six dogs are described as a “quality hunting beagle pack” who have “hunted this year, all going into deep cover, all marking ground” –

In beagling, dogs are typically used to chase hares. When the hares are caught, they are attacked and ripped apart. Beagling is illegal in the UK but sadly remains legal in Ireland.

Contact details for Donedeal

Twitter: @donedeal


09. Judge eulogises foxhunters during court case

During a court case in Macroom District Court this month, in which a farmer successfully sued the Macroom Foxhounds Club for injury to a bull, Judge James McNulty went bizarrely over the top in eulogising the foxhunters saying: “They have an enviable record of volunteering in their chosen sport. It is clear that their participation in their sport is to be cherished, respected and protected if necessary, but they must practise having regard to the rights of others.”

Clearly, Judge McNulty was not including the hunted fox when he mentioned "the rights of others". He also said that the members of the hunt were “good and decent people who gave truthful evidence as to what they recall from that day” and that he respected their integrity. Despite his high regard for the foxhunters and their "truthful evidence", Judge McNulty ruled in favour of the farmer and awarded him €4,000

These remarks by Judge McNulty from the bench are outrageous, given the barbarity of foxhunting. Foxhunting involves taking out packs of hounds to pursue a fox around the countryside in order to catch him and rip him to shreds. If the fox goes to ground, the hunters use terriers to attack and corner the animal before digging him out. Both fox and terrier suffer horrendous injuries.

How a judge can see fit to laud and exalt this type of animal cruelty and those who engage in it is utterly disgraceful in this day and age.

Fox hunting has been outlawed in Great Britain since 2005, because of the inherent cruelty, and a ban here in Ireland is long overdue.

Foxhunters are a pest in the countryside and many farmers are heartily sick of them riding roughshod over their lands, vandalising their boundaries and causing stress and injury to their livestock. It's way past time that our legislators moved to ban this horrific cruelty for the sake of the fox and the persecuted farmers.

For a report on the court case in question, see


Sign our "Ban Blood Sports in Ireland" petition
Sign Now

Please join us in appealing to the Minister for Agriculture to remove an exemption for foxhunting from Ireland's Animal Health and Welfare Act.

Michael Creed TD
Minister for Agriculture
Department of Agriculture
Agriculture House,
Kildare Street, Dublin 2.

Tel: 01-607 2000 or LoCall 1890-200510.
Fax: 01-661 1013.
Leave a comment on Facebook:
Tweet to: @creedcnw

Contact the Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Enda Kenny and Tanaiste (Deputy Prime Minister) Frances Fitzgerald and urge them to ban fox hunting.

An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny
Department of the Taoiseach,
Government Buildings,
Upper Merrion Street,
Dublin 2
Telephone: 01-6194020
Tweet to: @EndaKennyTD

An Tanaiste, Frances Fitzgerald
Department Of Justice
51 St. Stephen's Green
Dublin 2.
Tel: +353 1 602-8202 or +353 1 457 7712
Tweet to: @FitzgeraldFrncs


10. "Mockery of democracy": Columnist condemns Dail rejection of coursing bill

Muzzling majority to make money from misery
Sunday Independent 10th July 2016
by Fiona O'Connell

Whether it's fact or fiction, a good story means you may have your hunches about how things will turn out - but you don't know for sure. That's what keeps you reading.

Life isn't so different. Like the time as a child when I was on a country walk with my family and I was trailing behind. I wandered into a semi-circle of hedges, maybe because I was upset about something.

There I was, crying my little head off, when suddenly I heard a rustling sound. I turned and saw a hare pop its head up out of the hedges, his long ears pointing. He looked at me, as if to ask: "What the heck is all the hullabaloo about?" The sight of that beautiful creature certainly stopped my tears in their tracks.

I have never forgotten that hare that heard me cry. But sadly, I've heard far too many of them crying since then, in footage taken at hare coursing centres around this country - which remains one of only three in the western world that allows this blood sport.

And along with the ongoing loss of habitat, their suffering is set to continue. Until one day, this iconic animal that is the stuff of Irish legend - Oisin promised never to harm a hare - will be silenced forever.

For the blocking of a ban on hare coursing last month by not just our Government - but all our major political parties - was a disgrace to democracy. And it revealed just how powerful are the minority who muzzled any other possible outcome. They wage a war on our wildlife not only in pursuit of a perverse pleasure - but more importantly, because of the profits from the gambling and corporate sponsorship that comes with it.

No wonder the coursing clique kept quiet during the brief furore. Because they knew a ban was never going to happen. And they were right. By imposing the party whip (appropriately enough) our so-called public representatives ensured this blood sport won the day. Maureen O'Sullivan could have performed somersaults, instead of wasting her breath debating the issue to a near empty Dail. For the die was cast.

Some of the arguments against a ban would have been laughable, if vulnerable hares weren't at stake. Like the gem from the minister who issues the licence to trap, cage and torment these solitary creatures that it "would drive coursing underground".

So why ban anything? Other politicians claimed "the highest animal welfare standards are in place". Really? What about the relentless reports of deaths and injuries?

It's been over 20 years since the last attempt to ban hare coursing was similarly blocked. Since then, Ireland has moved on, to the extent that we now have gay marriage. Are happy hares just too radical for us?

But the majority in this country who want a ban on this barbaric blood sport don't have to accept this mockery of democracy. If they contacted their TDs demanding a genuine vote on the issue, I wonder what would happen?

We'd have to wait and see how life turns out.


11. The TDs who said they were against coursing - but voted against a ban

Among the 114 TDs who last month refused to vote in favour of a ban on cruel hare coursing were two party leaders who have stated they are opposed to hare coursing.

In 2003, Enda Kenny TD told ICABS: "I am opposed to the practice of live hare coursing." Last month, however, the Fine Gael leader and Taoiseach not only voted against the bill which sought to ban coursing but - through the party whip - compelled fellow Fine Gael TDs (regardless of their personal stances) to also reject it, thus ensuring that the bill failed.

Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams also voted to block a ban. In conversation with ICABS following the vote, the Louth TD told us "I am against hare coursing".

Also voting against the bill to ban coursing was Sean Kyne, TD (Fine Gael, Galway West) who in the past challenged a Minister on the licensing of hare netting licences, pointing out that the Irish Hare is a supposedly protected species. In 2012, he also stated: "I asked the Parliamentary Question on foot of concerns expressed to me by constituents on the cruelty associated with hare coursing. These are concerns which I share and I find it most puzzling when persons harbouring such concerns are labelled as anti-rural. There is nothing 'anti-rural' in seeking the highest standards for animal welfare." Deputy Kyne has also encouraged a Minister to replace live hare coursing with drag coursing, in which the dogs chase an artificial lure instead of a hare.

Bernard Durkan is another Fine Gael TD who refused to support a ban on coursing. The Kildare North politician is on record as saying "My views on live hare coursing are fairly well known. In fact, during debates on the subject in the late Eighties and early Nineties, I spoke publicly to the effect that I was opposed to live hare coursing."

Mayo TD Michael Ring (Fine Gael) also joined party colleagues in voting against the bill. He is on record as saying "I am personally against hare coursing. I am totally opposed to cruelty to animals but particularly this kind of cruelty in relation to blood sports."


If these politicians represent your constituency, please get in touch with them now. Tell them that their stance on this animal cruelty issue means hares will continue to suffer and die in coursing. Urge them to show compassion for Irish wildlife and vote differently next time a similar bill comes before the Dail.

Find out names and contact details for TDs at

or on the Oireachtas website


12. Anti-coursing Sinn Fein leader votes against coursing ban

After voting against the bill which aimed to outlaw hare coursing, Sinn Fein leader Gerry Adams told the Irish Council Against Bloodsports: "I am against hare coursing".

The Louth TD explained this inconsistency by saying that although he opposed the cruel bloodsport, he voted against a ban in accordance with the party’s current pro-coursing policy. This deplorable policy did not stop seven of his party colleagues from doing the right thing and refusing to vote in support of animal cruelty.

Despite claiming to be anti-coursing, Gerry Adams not only voted against the bill, he is now reprimanding party colleagues who did not follow instructions to reject the proposed ban.

The Irish Times of 7th July reports: “Two Sinn Féin TDs face a short-term suspension for defying the party’s instructions on a Bill banning hare coursing. The party had issued an instruction to oppose a Private Members’ motion by Independent TD Maureen O’Sullivan. Seven TDs did not vote on the Bill last Thursday with a number explaining their absence to the party whip. Two TDs did not contact whip Aengus Ó Snodaigh and have been reprimanded by the party. It is understood the two deputies are Cork North Central TD Jonathan O’Brien and Dublin North West TD Dessie Ellis.”

The report adds that “Mr Adams agreed the TDs should be reprimanded” after Mr Ó Snodaigh informed him of the “TDs’ defiance of the party’s instructions”.

Aengus Ó Snodaigh’s stance is at complete odds with a 2009 appeal he made to the then Minister for Agriculture to “introduce legislation banning all blood sports including hare coursing and fox hunting”.

With its leader, whip and TDs clearly opposed to hare coursing, it is now time for Sinn Fein to act to reinstate its previous anti-coursing policy. Please contact Sinn Fein today and urge the party to modernise its animal welfare policies to include support for a ban on hare coursing.

Read the full Irish Times article at


Sign our petition: “Sinn Fein: Support a ban on cruel hare coursing”

Urge Sinn Fein to back a ban on hare coursing and foxhunting, in line with the majority view that these cruel activities must be outlawed.

Tel: (353) 1 8726100 / 8726932
OR 02890 347350
Leave a comment on Facebook:

Gerry Adams TD
Tel: +353 (0)1 618 4442
Tweet to @GerryAdamsSF

(If you have time, please compose your own personal letter)

Dear Sinn Fein,

I am one of the majority who want hare coursing and foxhunting outlawed. I urge your party to modernise its outdated animal welfare policies to include support for a ban on this deplorable animal cruelty.

Yours sincerely,


Sinn Fein TDs who voted against the bill to ban coursing

Gerry Adams (Sinn Fein, Louth)
Pat Buckley (Sinn Fein, Cork East)
David Cullinane (Sinn Fein, Waterford)
Pearse Doherty (Sinn Fein, Donegal)
Martin Ferris (Sinn Fein, Kerry County)
Martin Kenny (Sinn Fein, Sligo Leitrim)
Mary Lou McDonald (Sinn Fein, Dublin Central)
Denise Mitchell (Sinn Fein, Dublin Bay North)
Imelda Munster (Sinn Fein, Louth)
Carol Nolan (Sinn Fein, Offaly)
Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire (Sinn Fein, Cork South Central)
Aengus Ó Snodaigh (Sinn Fein, Dublin South Central)
Louise O’Reilly (Sinn Fein, Dublin Fingal)
Maurice Quinlivan (Sinn Fein, Limerick City)
Brian Stanley (Sinn Fein, Laois)
Peadar Tóibín (Sinn Fein, Meath West)

Sinn Fein TDs who chose to abstain or were not present to vote

John Brady (Sinn Fein, Wicklow)
Sean Crowe (Sinn Fein, Dublin South West)
Dessie Ellis (Sinn Fein, Dublin North West)
Kathleen Funchion (Sinn Fein, Carlow Kilkenny)
Eoin Ó Broin (Sinn Fein, Dublin Mid West)
Caoimhghín Ó Caoláin (Sinn Fein, Cavan Monaghan)
Jonathan O’Brien (Sinn Fein, Cork North Central)


13. "Fianna Fáil does not support the bill which would ban live hare coursing"

"Fianna Fáil does not support the bill which would ban live hare coursing" - a shameful statement issued by the Fianna Fail Party. The statement signed by Kildare South TD Fiona O’Loughlin farcically refers to "the highest animal welfare standards" and tries to claim that existing regulations "ensure that animals involved in this activity are protected".

Fianna Fail is disregarding the majority view amongst citizens that cruel hare coursing must be banned.

The Fianna Fail statement in full:

Fianna Fáil does not support the bill which would ban live hare coursing. This is due to the existing strict regulatory framework in place, which ensures the highest animal welfare standards and protections are in place in carrying out this activity.

It is imperative that enforcement of the existing regulations are complied with in order to ensure that animals involved in this activity are protected and conform to such standards as opposed to adding another layer of regulation to existing legislation.

Hares can only be collected for coursing by ICC affiliated clubs in accordance with the terms of licences granted by the state. Such licences contain 26 conditions, most of which relate to hare welfare that set strict requirements. Meanwhile, more than 95% of the hares caught for hare coursing are returned to the wild each year.

Fiona OLoughlin


Contact Fianna Fail Head Office to urge the party to reconsider its stance on this animal cruelty issue - Leave a comment on Facebook

Fiann Fail HQ
Áras de Valera
65-66 Lower Mount Street
Dublin 2
Tel: +353 (0)1 676 1551
Tweet to @fiannafailparty


14. JP McManus pulls sponsorship from hare coursing

Animal rights activists claim victory after billionaire JP McManus pulls sponsorship from hare coursing event
Irish Mirror, 7th June 2016

Hare coursing comes under pressure as billionaire philanthropist JP McManus withdraws sponsorship from major coursing event as a bill comes before the Dail seeking to ban the sport

Animal activists are claiming a major victory after racing tycoon JP McManus withdrew €40,000 sponsorship from a prestigious coursing event.

The Alliance for Animal Rights maintain the move came after a sustained campaign and a petition calling on sponsors to stop supporting the bloodsport.

It has emerged that one of the sport’s leading sponsors, the billionaire philanthropist McManus, will no longer be supporting the three-day Irish Cup hare coursing event.

In recent years animal protection organisations and anti-blood sports campaign groups had launched online petitions urging Mr McManus to stop offering financial support to coursing.

The sport is banned in many countries, including Britain and is also illegal in the North.

But proponents of coursing claim it is not cruel and that the hares are not harmed as the greyhounds wear muzzles during the events.

A statement issued through animal rights activist Bernie Wright said: “Coursing fans were dealt a hefty blow when a petition we started yielded results. We targeted sponsors of hare coursing mainly JP McManus and others asking them to withdraw their funding.

“We need to end coursing, pulling their finance will greatly help. The targets of this petition all sponsor individual ‘courses’.

“Gladly in the case of the Limerick Cup sponsorship of €40,000, it has been withdrawn now.

“The next hare coursing season will be won’t have the high profile backing of its one time super sponsor.”

Hare coursing is still very popular in rural areas and those who participate in and follow the sport see the campaigns to ban it as an attack on their way of life and a tradition which goes back hundreds if not thousands of years.

In recent years there have been attempts to make the sport more acceptable including the muzzling of greyhounds involved in events.

Independent TD Maureen O’Sullivan is attempting to have a law passed which will totally ban live coursing in Ireland but will allow drag coursing which has proved to be successful in Australia and other countries.

With the current Dail make-up with the Fine Gael-led Government already suffering one defeat Deputy O’Sullivan’s supporters are hoping her Private Member’s Bill could be pass if a free vote is held.

The Irish mountain hare is one of the country’s longest established indigenous mammals and, while they are close relatives to the mountain hare of Scandinavia and northern Europe, are a recognized sub-species.

While their population is thriving in lowland pastures their numbers are in decline in the upland and is a legally protected species under the Irish Wildlife act and EU law.


15. “Insane grants” to greyhound industry must be stopped

In a speech at the “Ban export of Irish greyhounds to China” demonstration (June 2nd, Dublin), Marion Fitzgibbon of Limerick Animal Welfare condemned the Department of Agriculture for keeping the greyhound industry afloat with massive annual grants.

“Every Christmas, [the Department of Agriculture] are giving about 15 million euro to the greyhound industry,” she told hundreds of gathered protesters. “Under the Horse and Greyhound fund, they got 14.8 million euro last year. They continued to give these huge grants to the greyhound industry right through the recession when children were left without money, the elderly were neglected, everybody was neglected. They continued to give between 11 and 15 million every year.”

“The industry is bankrupt already but they get bailed out every Christmas. If the Department of Agriculture would stop these insane grants to the industry, the industry would die. We wouldn’t have to kill it,” she added, to huge cheers and applause.

Watch Marion’s full speech


Please sign and share our petition
Irish Government: Stop Funding Cruel Greyhound Racing Industry

Urge the Taoiseach (Irish Prime Minister) and Department of Agriculture Ministers to stop giving grants to the greyhound industry.

An Taoiseach, Enda Kenny
Department of the Taoiseach,
Government Buildings, Upper Merrion Street, Dublin 2
Telephone: +353 (0)1-6194020

Michael Creed TD
Minister for Agriculture
Agriculture House, Kildare Street, Dublin 2.
Tel: +353 (0)1-607 2000 or LoCall 1890-200510.
Leave a comment on Facebook:
Tweet to @creedcnw

Andrew Doyle TD,
Dail Eireann, Leinster House, Kildare Street, Dublin 2.
Tel: +353 (0)1 618 3611
Leave a comment on Facebook:
Tweet to @ADoyleTD


16. Irish Rail urged to investigate latest images of hunters on railway line

The Irish Council Against Blood Sports is renewing its call to Irish Rail to take all possible action against any hunt caught trespassing on its railway lines.

Our appeal to the company comes after more photos have emerged showing foxhunters and a pack of hounds on a track.

The rail company is being urged to investigate and if a trespass occurred, "take action to the full extent of the law".

We understand that the response from Irish Rail to-date has been to contact the hunts in question and issue them with a warning to stay off the tracks.

That hunters are not only apparently continuing to encroach on to tracks, but also posting photos online for all to see, is a clear indication that such an approach has been inadequate in dealing with this serious issue.

We believe that a prosecution, as opposed to a mere warning, will be the only effective way to convey to hunting groups that Irish Rail has a zero tolerance for hunt trespass on to rail lines.


17. Calls for ban on gruesome geese-decapitation festival

In July, a gruesome festival took place in the Spanish town of Carpio de Tajo. The annual ‘Correr los gansos’ – held in honour of Saint James the Apostle – involves euthanizing geese and hanging their bodies from a rope suspended over the town square. To the applause of heartless onlookers, men on horseback ride along beneath the hanging geese and reach out to pull off their heads.

The man who pulls off the most heads is declared the winner. The heads “serve as a trophy for their wives, sisters and mothers”.

Video footage filmed by animal protection group, PACMA, shows the sickening spectacle

A petition calling for a ban on the festival has so far been signed by over 80,000 people. The petition’s creator, Carmen Cordoba Mauri, says “This monstrous practice is done with the sponsorship of Carpio de Tajo (Toledo) and with the approval of the Catholic Church…it takes place with the silent complicity of parish priests between prayers and processions.”

Please sign the petition and share the link


18. Breeder who tried to export 24 greyhounds to China is a hare courser

The dog breeder who attempted to export 24 Irish greyhounds to China is involved in the cruel bloodsport of hare coursing, ICABS can reveal.

The breeder, identified in the Irish Mail on Sunday as Robert Green, is listed on a hare coursing website as the owner of a greyhound who won at a coursing meeting in Tipperary in 2013. A photo of his dog, Screwdriver, chasing after a terrorised hare can be seen here

Last October, Kerry's Eye named Green as the co-owner of a greyhound who won the Derby Trial Stake at a coursing meeting in Glin. A photo published on the Kerry's Eye website shows him standing next to the dog and holding a trophy.

In last weekend's Mail on Sunday, it was reported that shipping crates containing 24 greyhounds bound for China were turned away from London’s Heathrow airport. Staff at the airport made the decision not to ship the dogs as their crates were in bad condition and not fit for transport.

"The dogs were traced back to dog breeder Robert Green in Cork," the Mail on Sunday report revealed. "They had been in transit for three days and have now been shipped back to Mr Green, who was exporting them for racing in China. Mr Green declined to comment when contacted by the Irish Mail on Sunday."

The report continued: "Leading animal welfare organisations in Ireland have called for the Department of Agriculture to ban the export of dogs to China. The dogs are being shipped out to race in the notorious Canidrome stadium in Macau where 30 dogs a month die. China’s appalling record on animal cruelty is well-documented internationally. animal welfare charities the ISPCA, Dogs Trust and the Blue Cross have said the 24 dogs sent to Macau ‘would have almost certainly died there’."


19. Mick Barry TD calls for ban on export of greyhounds to Macau

Anti Austerity Alliance TD, Mick Barry, has condemned as "an absolute disgrace" the export of Irish greyhounds to Macau.

Speaking at a "Cork Says Stop Sending Greyhounds to China" protest, the Cork North Central politician noted that the presence of over 100 campaigners in the rain "says something about the growing feeling in the country about this issue".

He praised animal rights activists in the UK whose efforts last month helped stop the export of 24 Irish greyhounds to Macau. But, he emphasised, people shouldn't have to be getting up in the middle of the night to go to an airport to stop the exports.

Calling for a ban on sending greyhounds to Macau, Deputy Barry denounced Irish authorities for failing to act, saying "Shame on the Irish Government. Shame on the Minister (Michael Creed). And shame on the Department [of Agriculture]."

"Those dogs are being exported on to death row," he added. "That is the reality. I am happy to stand with people here tonight against the export of those dogs and I have a feeling this campaign is going to grow and can be successful."

A big thank you to Mick Barry TD for supporting this campaign.


20. Minister Creed failing to take action to stop export of greyhounds to China

Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed is failing to take adequate action to stop the export of Irish greyhounds to a life of misery and certain death in China.

Responding to a Dail question from Ruth Coppinger TD (Dublin West, Anti-Austerity Alliance), Minister Creed merely repeated what his predecessor Simon Coveney said, i.e. "The Irish Greyhound Board (IGB) has advised all owners involved in the export of greyhounds to only export to destinations that provide the expected levels of care and management as defined in the IGB's Code of Practice for the welfare of greyhounds."

This is advice which Minister Creed knows was clearly ignored when a greyhound breeder/hare courser tried to export 24 Irish greyhounds to China. The dogs were saved from a terrible fate 10,000 km away - not because of any advice from the IGB but thanks to staff at London's Heathrow Airport. They stopped the dogs from being loaded on to a plane after noting that the crates they were confined to were in bad condition and not fit for transport.

In her question to the Minister, Ruth Coppinger referred specifically to Macau, home to the notorious Canidrome racetrack where doomed Irish greyhounds are currently languishing. Minister Creed chose not to mention Macau in the response.

Parliamentary Questions and Answers
Question 1011 - Answered on 17 May 2016

Ruth Coppinger (Dublin West, Anti-Austerity Alliance) To ask the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine his views on the greyhound trade with the Macau Special Administrative Region in China; if he has animal welfare concerns about this trade; if he will intervene to prevent the export of greyhounds to locations where there are animal welfare concerns; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

Michael Creed (Cork North West, Fine Gael) Once appropriate animal health and welfare certification requirements are met, dogs, including greyhounds, may be exported internationally. Health certification arrangements are in place and exporters are also required to comply with the provisions of Council Regulation (EC) No 1 of 2005 on the protection of animals during transport. A range of flight carriers make the appropriate arrangements for the safe transport of animals worldwide in accordance with the requirements of International Air Transport. The Irish Greyhound Board (IGB) has advised all owners involved in the export of greyhounds to only export to destinations that provide the expected levels of care and management as defined in the IGBs Code of Practice for the welfare of greyhounds. I fully endorse this view.


Contact Taoiseach Enda Kenny and Agriculture Minister Michael Creed to demand legislation to prevent any more Irish greyhounds being sent to China and for action to be taken to rescue and rehome the Irish greyhounds currently at the track. Please also sign and share the petitions below.

Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD / Michael Creed TD
Dail Eireann, Kildare St, Dublin
Tel: +353 (0)1-6194020 (Enda Kenny)
Tel: +353 (0)1-607 2000 (Michael Creed)

Contact Lufthansa and urge them to put in place a policy of not transporting greyhounds from Ireland to China.

Leave a comment on the Lufthansa Facebook page
Send a tweet to Lufthansa @lufthansa

Please sign and share the petitions

Stop export of Irish greyhounds to China

Lufthansa: Stop transporting Irish greyhounds to China

Shut down the Canidrome, the world's deadliest greyhound racetrack


21. We need a referendum on 'rural pursuits' to tackle animal welfare issues

We need a referendum on 'rural pursuits' to tackle animal welfare issues
by Fiona O'Connell, Sunday Independent, 21st February 2016

'In an era when species are becoming extinct and climate change is a terrifying reality, is it appropriate to continue hunting animals for so-called fun?'

Posters of assorted politicians assuming people-pleasing poses are plastered everywhere around this country town. You never hear the various parties debate animal welfare. That isn't important compared to other issues.

Yet last year the bill for putting down horses - in Dublin alone - was more than €1m. Animal rescue centres around Ireland continue to be overwhelmed and underfunded.

But aside from the financial cost is the very real damage to our reputation. Sweden, which plays saviour to thousands of dumped Irish dogs every year, has expressed dismay at our lax laws. In their country, a dog is part of the family - not a fad to forsake when it no longer suits.

And the chasm is widening. A sentence of 20 years was recently handed down to a man who organised dogfights in the US. And many Spanish municipalities are banning bullfights.

Plenty in this country share their changing attitude to our fellow creatures - as demonstrated by the Letter of the Week in this newspaper on February 7 that praised Joe Kennedy's excellent piece on the pleasure we get from observing foxes.

Yet despite this, we are one of the few countries in the western world that condones bloodsports - or 'rural pursuits', to use the euphemism that conveniently couches the cruelty involved in these perverse pastimes. It's ironic to note, this centenary year, that hare coursing and fox hunting originate with the Black and Tans and the British ruling class respectively - a fact that doesn't seem to bother Sinn Fein. It's true we hunted in ancient Ireland. But we also respected animals, in the manner of Native Americans. As the legend of The Children of Lir shows, we honoured our connection to other species. That is a long way from modern-day commercial claptrap.

Surely bloodsports are only 'rural' in the sense that they happen in the country. Where is the evidence that either 'sport' shows any appreciation or respect for our wildlife?

Predictably, only the Green Party gives a damn about animal welfare. So-called 'new' party Renua actually wants to increase bloodsports to cash in on a particular type of tourist. Why not bring back dogfights too, Renua? That'd be a profitable solution to all those abandoned pets.

In an era when species are becoming extinct and climate change is a terrifying reality, is it appropriate to continue hunting animals for so-called fun?

What about the rest of us, whose genuine rural pursuits involve catching a glimpse of a fox or hare when out hiking?

Last year, we updated our morals when it comes to marriage. Isn't it time we held a referendum about the way we treat animals, especially in so-called rural pursuits?


22. Lactating Irish hare killed by lurcher: Turkish hunter convicted and fined

A Turkish man has been convicted and fined after his lurcher killed a lactating Irish hare.

On the Sean O’Rourke Show on RTE Radio 1 (25th May 2016), it was revealed that the hare was killed while the man was out hunting. The lactating hare’s dependent leverets would almost certainly have died too when she didn’t return.

In an interview conducted by Paddy O’Gorman outside Longford District Court, the hunter’s partner said that a National Parks and Wildlife Service ranger saw him putting the hare into his car.

“He has to pay 100 euro every month for the next six months to save him going to jail,” she said.

Despite being a so-called protected species, the hare is one of Ireland’s most persecuted species. As well as being illegally targeted by hunters, hares are also legally shot and chased/killed by packs of hounds. Thousands are also captured from the wild every year – with a licence from Minister Heather Humphreys – and used as live bait for greyhounds to chase during hare coursing meetings around the country. Every season, hares are injured and killed during coursing; those who survive the ordeal and are released back to the wild are at risk of later dying from the stress-related condition known as capture myopathy.


23. Latest Dail Questions and Answers

Question 41 - Answered on Thursday, 7th July 2016

Maureen O'Sullivan, TD (Dublin Central, Independent) To ask the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht her views on the National Parks and Wildlife Services's reports of the injuries to and deaths of hares at live coursing meetings; and how she will address the illegal taking of hares for the hare trade?

Heather Humphreys TD (Minister for Arts, Heritage, Regional, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs) Under the terms of the Wildlife Acts, licences are required by the Irish Coursing Club, covering their affiliated coursing clubs, if they wish to capture or tag hares for use at regulated hare coursing meetings.

It is a licence condition that a qualified veterinary surgeon should be in attendance during all coursing meetings and that a signed report on the general health of the hares, and on any injuries or deaths of hares that occur during the meeting, should be submitted to my Department. In the event of a hare dying while in the care of the coursing club, the veterinary surgeon will examine the hare, determine the cause of death and consider if a post mortem is necessary.

A very high proportion of the hares captured for hare coursing are, in fact, returned to the wild each year - an average of 99% of the hares used at hare coursing meetings have been returned to the wild over the past four hare coursing seasons.

There is an Open Season for the hare species, which extends from 26 September to 28 February of the following year and which allows for the hunting of hares. My Department is aware of the prevalence of illegal hare hunting around the country and successful prosecutions have been taken in recent years by the National Parks and Wildlife Service of my Department relating to such illegal hunting. All incidents of illegal hare hunting should be reported to An Garda Síochána or to the National Parks and Wildlife Service of my Department.

Question No. 65 - Answered on Wednesday, 1st June, 2016.

Clare Daly TD: To ask the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht further to Parliamentary Question Number 52 of 8 December 2015, how confident she is that the evidence regarding the effect of coursing on hare populations that forms the basis of the decision to issue licences for hare coursing is valid, given the last Hare Survey of Ireland took place almost a decade ago, in 2007.

Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht (Heather Humphreys, T.D.) Hares are a protected species under the Wildlife Acts and may only be hunted during the prescribed Open Season. There is also a facility under these Acts to issue a licence for coursing.

I am advised that there is no current evidence that hare coursing has a significant negative impact on hare populations. The most recent population estimate for the Irish hare - undertaken in 2007 - was 535,000 animals. Coursing Clubs affiliated to the Irish Coursing Club catch in the region of 5,500 hares each coursing season, equivalent to approximately 1% of the national resource. I am further advised that more than 95% of the hares captured for hare coursing are returned to the wild each year. In addition, independent scientific studies have estimated that hare mortality during captivity and coursing in Ireland is equivalent to less than 0.1% of the total adult hare population annually.

My Department has been working with the National Biodiversity Data Centre to collate distribution records for all Irish mammals. The most recent map of these records, which are available online, show that the Irish hare remains very widespread throughout the country.

The Irish hare is also listed on Annex V of the EU Habitats Directive and this means that my Department is required to undertake an assessment of its conservation status every six years. The most recent conservation assessment, undertaken in 2013, identified changes in agricultural practises, in particular intensification of grassland usage, as the main pressure facing the hare. Nonetheless, the overall assessment considered the species to be in a favourable conservation status and concluded that “...the hare is widespread and common in Ireland with a broad habitat niche. None of the identified threats are considered likely to impact on its conservation status.”

The next EU Habitats Directive assessment is due in 2019. In advance of that, my Department will review the need for a new national hare survey to inform that report and provide up to date information on the population status of this species in Ireland.

Question 163 - Answered on 26th April, 2016

Clare Daly, TD (Dublin North, United Left) To ask the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine if, all dogs must be microchipped, under the Microchipping of Dogs Regulations 2015; his plans to offer an exemption to the greyhound racing industry in this regard.

The Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine: (Simon Coveney) Dog microchipping became compulsory for all dogs on 31 March 2016. Microchipping will help to protect the welfare of dogs by promoting responsible dog ownership and also a valuable way of re-uniting owners with lost or stolen pets. I have no plans to exempt greyhounds from this requirement.

Question 464 - Answered on 20th April, 2016

Clare Daly, TD (Dublin North, United Left) To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if the Dog Breeding Establishments Act has been amended to remove the €400 per annum dog licence fee exemption for hunting groups and if so, the steps being taken to ensure payment.

Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government Alan Kelly (Tipperary North, Labour) Section 46 of the Environment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2015 seeks to amend certain provisions of the Control of Dogs Acts, which inadvertently exempted certain bodies, including hunting groups, from the dog licensing requirements. Accordingly, once commenced, section 46 of the 2015 Act will reinstate the requirement for these bodies to hold a licence.

I have delayed commencing the relevant legislative provisions to date to ensure that those bodies that may be affected by the change have adequate notice of the reinstated legislative requirements.

Questions 8 and 9 - Answered on 22nd March 2016

Ruth Coppinger TD (Dublin West, Anti-Austerity Alliance) To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection to prohibit hunt organisations from using the JobBridge scheme to fill roles in hunting activities; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [4727/16]

Clare Daly TD (Dublin Fingal, United Left) To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection to ensure that no JobBridge vacancies or internships are offered to organisations which engage in animal cruelty (details supplied) in County Waterford. [4729/16]

Joan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour) I propose to take Questions Nos. 8 and 9 together.

There are a range of occupations, including those in the hunt sports sector, that some people may find objectionable for one reason or another. Other examples include aspects of the meat or fishing industry, or those related to gambling, In these cases as long as the occupation is valid, the activity is not illegal and the internship offered complies with the general terms and conditions of the JobBridge scheme the Department cannot preclude it from availing of the JobBridge.


24. Letters to the Editor

Help raise awareness about Ireland’s animal cruelty issues – write letters to the editors of local and national newspapers to speak out against hare coursing, foxhunting, etc.

Westmeath deputies vote to retain cruel 'sport'
Westmeath Examiner, 9th July 2016

Our four public representatives, Deputies Peter Burke (FG), Robert Troy (FF), Willie Penrose (Labour) and Independent Kevin Moran voted against Deputy Maureen O’Sullivan’s Private Member’s Bill to outlaw hare coursing last Thursday in the Dail. This rejection by our local TDs of a Bill that would have seen an end to the snatching of timid hares in nets and their use as live lures before greyhounds at coursing matches will no doubt dismay and disappoint the vast majority of decent Westmeath and Longford people who abhor cruelty to animals.

The pro coursing arguments cited were that hare coursing is licensed and strictly regulated, the dogs are muzzled and, of course, the economic benefits. However, the licence to trap hares with 22 conditions, does not prevent the stress and terror endured by hares caught in nets and used as live bait before greyhounds, nor does it prevent hares being struck, tossed, battered and mauled by muzzled greyhounds, resulting in injury and death.

Our local TDs chose to close their eyes and ears to the reality that hare coursing is cruel and that hares are being terrorised, injured and killed, despite muzzles worn by the dogs, as clearly shown in video footage sent to them, plus reports obtained under Freedom of Information, which documented the injuries and kills occurring annually. (See below) They also chose to ignore the fact that there is a humane alternative to using hares as lures before greyhounds – drag coursing, a video of which was circulated to all the TDs, but obviously they didn’t even bother to click the link and have a look at the greyhounds enthusiastically following the drag time after time at a coursing meeting in Killarney in 2013.

It is accepted and acknowledged by our legislators that hare coursing is cruel, and this is reflected in the Animal Health & Welfare Act, with hare coursing and indeed foxhunting having to be specially exempted from prosecution under this Act, and this has been the case in the previous legislation going back to 1911. If these activities were not cruel, there would be no need for an exemption.

Hare coursing is outlawed in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, leaving our Republic as the last outpost of a cruel and shameful activity. Our four local TDs should hang their heads in shame.

Aideen Yourell
Irish Council Against Bloodsports

Reason why hare coursing ban failed
Irish Examiner, 18 July 2016

Michael Barrett (letters July 14) has misread the outcome of the vote on Maureen O’Sullivan’s bill to ban hare coursing.

It failed, not because hare coursing enjoys massive public support in rural Ireland (which it doesn’t), but because the party whips obliged TDs to oppose it. I can assure him that had there been a free vote the result would have been much closer, if not a victory for the anti-blood sport cause.

Hare coursing now depends for its survival on the crutch provided by party whip system.

He refers to the Green Party’s fate at the 2011 general election as if the loss of its six Dáil seats was directly related to its stance against animal cruelty/field sports. In fact, five of the six Green TDs who lost their seats resided in constituencies where no hare coursing or fox hunting took place. It was the Green Party’s involvement in a government that was perceived, rightly or wrongly, to have devastated the economy and sold out our national sovereignty that drew the electorate backlash.

Thankfully, the Gr are now back in the Dáil, and this is good for both democracy and our hard-pressed environment.

Regarding the alleged 300,000 people engaged in field sports in Ireland, only a tiny fraction of these are involved in hare coursing and fox hunting. More than 90% of them are anglers and shooters. There was a 23-year gap between the two Private Members votes that aimed to ban hare coursing. I can assure Mr Barrett that he won’t have that long to wait for the next one.

John Fitzgerald (Campaign for the Abolition Of Cruel Sports)
Lower Coyne St, Callan, Co Kilkenny

Coursing worse than circuses
Irish Examiner, May 31, 2016

I welcome entertainment manager, Louis Walsh’s appeal to the Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creedon, to ban the exploitation of wild animals in circuses. The animals are forced to engage in humiliating tricks and stunts, and are ill-treated when they fail to respond to training.

But if we ban wild-animal circuses, we must also be consistent, and outlaw hare-coursing, a far worse abuse of wild animals for entertainment. The hares are snatched from their natural environment, held in unnatural captivity for weeks, and then forced to run from pairs of hyped-up dogs.

Though muzzled, the greyhound can strike the hares at high speed, inflicting painful injuries. They can also maul the terrified creatures and break their bones, resulting in the hares having to be ‘dispatched’ by coursing officials.

The Minister, when he comes to consider action against circuses, must also address this shameful misuse of our iconic Irish Hare, a mammal that survived the last Ice Age, only to find itself at the mercy of so-called ‘sportspeople’ who get their kicks from watching it ‘perform’ in the hail, rain, snow, and high winds of an Irish winter.

How can we claim to be concerned about the welfare of performing animals, if we allow this depraved relic of the Roman amphitheatre to continue?

John Fitzgerald
Callan, Co. Kilkenny

The ISPCA's Big Stop campaign
Westmeath Examiner, April 2nd 2016

Dear Editor,

Well done to Cllr. Una D’Arcy for introducing a motion calling on Mullingar Municipal District (Westmeath County Council) to support the ISPCA’s Big Stop campaign for an end to the use of wild animals in circuses (Westmeath Examiner 26.3.16).

And well done also to Cllrs. Ken Glynn and Sorca Clarke for supporting the motion, which was carried 3 to 2, with Cllrs. Dollard and McDermott opposing the ISPCA’s campaign, Cllr. McDermott claiming that generations of rural children would never have seen an exotic wild animal if it wasn’t for circuses.

What Cllr. McDermott doesn’t seem to realise is that seeing these animals performing humiliating circus tricks is hardly of benefit to the children’s education and awareness of exotic species. Far better for them to see images of wild animals in their natural habitats, behaving normally, as opposed to, for example, elephants languishing in circus compounds, shackled by the feet and oftentimes exhibiting stereotypical behaviour such as rocking, swaying or head-bobbing, which is a sure sign of psychological distress.

Cllr. Dollard stated that the Council has “more important issues to deal with”. Sure, the Council has important and serious issues to deal with and this will always be the case, but surely the suffering of animals is deserving of even a modicum of attention. After all, we do have legislation governing the treatment and welfare of animals in this country.

It’s such a shame that the rest of the Councillors sat on their hands and refused to give their support to the ISPCA’s very laudable campaign for an end to the appalling misery suffered by circus animals.

Aideen Yourell
Greenpark Meadows, Mullingar


25. Campaign Quotes

"This is not a sport. A sport is where you put two teams or two people against each other and they would be of equal weight or equal talent, but this is putting the might and fight of a greyhound against the slightness of a little hare. That’s not sport. That’s just cruelty." Linda Martin, speaking at a press conference announcing Maureen O'Sullivan TD's bill to ban hare coursing. June 21st 2016.

"Minister Humphreys is asleep at the wheel when it comes to executing her duties to protect badgers" - The Irish Wildlife Trust strongly criticises Arts & Heritage Minister over "gruesome and pointless cull" which has left an estimated 120,000 badgers dead.

"So many people are incensed by the curious lack of compassion to animals in this country. This is the tip of the iceberg. We will stop the greyhounds being transported to Macau to certain death. The greyhounds and lurchers are the most abandoned creatures in this country." ~ Actress and animal rights campaigner Pauline McLynn. Irish Mail on Sunday, 5th June 2016

"I take a quick break from Monday to dash off a letter to the new Minister for Agriculture calling for a ban on wild animals in circuses. It's not right that dumb creatures are made to perform for peanuts in front of audiences for our twisted amusement." Louis Walsh, "My Week", Sunday Independent 5th June 2016.

“Animals don’t stand on their heads, ride bicycles or perform other demeaning, often painful tricks willingly. They do so because if they don’t, they will be whipped, beaten with a steel-tipped bullhook or shocked with an electric prod.” Louis Walsh begs Irish government to stop animal cruelty, Irish Examiner, May 30, 2016

"Greyhounds race to almost certain death. Dogs are exported from Ireland to China's notorious tracks. Help stop it." Conservationist, author and TV presenter Bill Oddie (in a tweet, 26 May 2016)

"I cannot believe what I have just read - that the Irish Government continues to send greyhounds to race in China. Not only a long and distressing journey, but - without a question - a terrible and fearful future." Hollywood actress Virginia McKenna (Born Free), Irish Mail on Sunday, 22nd May 2016.

"The Department of Agriculture needs to act now to ensure that no more greyhounds are sent to race there where the conditions are so cruel." Irish singer and newly elected Senator, Frances Black, "Stop greyhound exports to China", Irish Daily Mail, 16 May 2016

A council caretaker who put out poison because a heron was taking goldfish from an ornamental pond in front of Louth County Council’s headquarters has had the Probation Act applied at Dundalk District Court. Judge William Hamill said he was applying the Probation Act in the case involving Colm Fergus, Belfry Gardens, Dundalk. He found the facts proven, but was not recording a conviction...Defence solicitor Adrian Ledwith told the earlier hearing his client had been passing the pond on a Saturday when he saw a heron at the side of the pond. Herons had been taking fish from the pond and he “made a spur of the moment decision to put something down.” He had laced sardines with a small amount of the poison and put it out with the intent of making the heron sick and curing the problem. Irish Times, April 28, 2016

An average OF 38 greyhounds are being put down every month in Ireland because of overbreeding and a lack of homes for them, animal welfare groups say. Thousands of greyhounds have been put down in Ireland in the last few years and hundreds more are being exported to countries with terrible animal welfare records, according to the Greyhound Rescue Association Ireland (GRAI). from 38 greyhounds are being put down a month in Ireland, The, May 23rd 2016.

"Hounds marked their fox to ground after an hour and a half, having covered more than six miles as hounds ran...Also out were joint-masters Ian Shanahan and Raymond Morrissey. The former, whose father was hunt secretary for many years, runs an engineering business while Raymond owns SuperValu in Cashel." (from a report on the Waterford Foxhounds, Irish Field, 2nd January 2015)


26. Petitions - Please sign and share

Ban Blood Sports in Ireland Now

Ireland: Ban Cruel Hare Coursing

Save Irish hares from cruel coursing

End Cruel Blood Sport of Fox Hunting in Ireland

Petition to Ban horrific Hare Coursing Cruelty in Ireland

Irish Government: Ban barbaric digging-out and terrierwork

Irish Government: Stop Funding Cruel Greyhound Racing Industry

Ireland: Stop badger snaring cruelty NOW

Protect the Irish Hare

Limerick Racecourse: Stop hosting cruel hare coursing

Spanish Tourism - Stop promoting cruel bullfighting

Coillte – Ban hunters from your forests

Primrose: Stop selling extremely cruel glue traps

Ban Torturous Hanging of Greyhounds in Spain

End Bullfighting in France

Mayo County Council: Withdraw the Dog Breeding Licence for Charles River Laboratories in Ballina

Please make a donation to ICABS

If you like our work, please consider making a donation. The Irish Council Against Blood Sports relies entirely on your generosity to continue our campaigning for an end to blood sport cruelty.

Please become a supporter of our work today - click on the Paypal button at to make a donation or send a cheque made payable to ICABS to ICABS, PO Box 88, Mullingar, Co Westmeath, Ireland. Thank you very much.

Top ways you can help the campaign

Top ways you can help the campaign
Join our email list and respond to our Action Alerts
Become a campaign supporter and make a donation to help fund our efforts
Contact your local politicians and ask them to support a ban on blood sports
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Sign up for our free text alert service and receive occasional campaign updates to your phone
Link to our website and display one of our banners
Monitor blood sports meetings in your area and provide us with photos, video and reports.
Write a letter to your local newspaper about the cruelty of blood sports
Sign and collect signatures for our petitions
Organise a fund-raiser to help raise funds for the campaign
Set up an online anti-blood sports group to cover your area.
Download, print and display our posters and leaflets
Set up an information stand at your school/library/youth group/adult group, etc
Introduce your friends to our website and encourage them to get involved.
Simply keeping your ear to the ground. about any blood-sport related incidents in your area.

Keep hunters off your land

Make it known publicly that your land is off-limits to hunters. Place a preservation notice in your local newspaper now. Here is a sample notice that you may wish to use: "Take notice that all my lands at [Insert address(es) of land] are private and preserved day and night. All forms of hunting and shooting are strictly prohibited. Trespassers will be prosecuted. Signed [Insert name(s) of landowner]" For more information, click on Farmers at

Tune in to the ICABS Channel

Footage of blood sport cruelty and the humane alternatives can be viewed on the ICABS Channel on Youtube - or by clicking on "Videos" at Please ask your local TD/Senator to view our videos and back a blood sports ban.

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