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Do you remember those two goats that I mentioned to you that seemed to draw a lot of attention from DEFRA & Co? Well, I did what we all thought was right and turned a blind eye to them. Then I had a week where I was really sick with gastric flu and asumed that during that time the goats would have been slaughtered.

First day back on my feet I got a call to inform me that the farmer had got a licence and they were being picked up and taken to slaughter yard next morning.I really was not happy with that - being transported,manhandled,seeing and smelling the blood and fear and then mum being killed,riped open and unborn baby thrashing about on floor until it died.

managed to get farmer to cancel licence and we would get our Vet to put them down by injection on the farm.The drugs from injection would enter placenta and kill baby humanely. Arranged for bodies to be removed and we were going to pick up the cost. In the meantime set about trying to find a home for them.No one would touch them. Eventually found a Sanctuary in County Durham that would take them.We arranged the transport and everything was in place but DEFRA moved the goalposts the whole time and made it impossible to move them and in the end the farmer said enough. Sadly on Wednesday morning the two goats and unborn baby were put down by our Vet. People all over the Country put themselves out to make it possible for these animals to live and DEFRA made it impossible.

Yes, FMD is over.Yes,AHB is defeated but where does that leave us in this Country?. The welfare implications are huge.What happens to the next goats that come along?.If we now can not rescue cloven hooved animals because we cant move them or because we all live in fear of DEFRA where does that leave us?

When someone with a pet goat,sheep, pig goes to move home and comes up against all this bureaucracy they will do exactly what these other people have done and dump the animals.

RE:Horses.You are aware that horse licensing comes into force Dec 2003. Equine Vets are being advised to acquaint themselves with foreign equine diseases.Sanctuaries are going to be licensed which will mean most of the small ones will have to close (possibly even ourselves - we are finding each year that due to red tape more and more of our money is being taken out of the animals' mouths and being put into insurances etc). Plans are afoot to licence livery yards with the assumption being that over a quarter will close down. Where will all these animals go? What of the livelihoods of people running these places?

A couple of our donkeys sometimes come out with us on fundraising events ( we have our own pens that we set up and they love it - it also helps greatly with fundraising) .One of the Councils have issued us with a risk assessment stating that we accept our donkeys may bite (I know they wont,but OK I can sign to accept that) and 2) I have to sign to say that I accept that my donkeys may pass germs on to the public. .............I think my donkeys should have their own risk assessment to say that the Council accept that the Public will poke my donkeys and may pass germs on to my donkeys!!!