Help Indiana's Wildlife - Prohibit Fox and Coyote PenningCoyote/Fox Penning is:
Inhumane and Unnecessary
Coyote/fox penning is the practice of allowing packs of hunting dogs to chase wild coyotes and foxes in a fenced enclosure where the wild animals often collapse from exhaustion and are mauled to death.
The majority of Indiana citizens have repeatedly expressed their disapproval of this inhumane and unnecessary activity. The Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has also recommended that penning be prohibited. Despite these objections, the Indiana Natural Resource Commission (NRC) has preliminarily ruled to allow Indiana penning facilities to operate legally. This ruling authorizes the continued operation of existing pens AND allows new pens to be established until a proposed January 1, 2012 moratorium.
The inhumanity of penning
Penners purchase foxes and coyotes from trappers. The animals are often captured in a steel leghold trap, packed into a cage with other injured animals, and hauled without food or water. In some situations, penners have been known to cut an animals’ tail off so that the dogs cannot quickly catch them and end the chase prematurely. The end, however, eventually does come when the animal is released from the cage and runs for its life in an enclosed unfamiliar territory with no means of escape from the dogs and a grisly death.
Penning is not only cruel for the bait animal, but also for the pursuing dogs, who are often injured in the chase by each other and the wildlife. Despite the potential harm, some dogs are given steroids and other drugs to enhance their endurance and aggression in this extremely competitive practice.
Privatizing wild coyotes and foxes by selling them to pen operators for recreation and profit also violates the Public Trust doctrine, which dictates that wildlife is “owned” by all citizens. Additionally, the call for a 2012 moratorium indicates the NRC acknowledges penning is inappropriate --yet it will continue to allow NEW penning operations for one full year! By proposing this FUTURE moratorium, our state government is limiting future economic competition and providing financial incentive for operators to establish new penning facilities before January 2012.
Finally, claims that the pens are well-regulated by the DNR are unfounded. In fact, no state has been capable of effectively monitoring and enforcing penning regulations.
Although the NRC is accepting public comment on this issue, its arrogance in allowing penning before it receives all public comments is offensive. The mission of the NRC is to provide leadership in the “responsible management and use” of Indiana natural resources. There is no disputing -- the abuse of wildlife in penned enclosures is not hunting, is not predator control, and is not responsible wildlife management.
You can make a difference!
Most states prohibit this cruel practice. Recently, Florida outlawed penning largely due to public pressure. Indiana should quickly follow Florida’s lead. Please write or call your Indiana legislators. To locate them, enter your zip code at: http://district.iga.in.gov/DistrictLookup/. Urge both your senator and representative to support legislation to permanently outlaw coyote and fox pens. Comments opposing this practice can be submitted online at: http://www.in.gov/nrc/2377.htm. Click on “Comment on this rule” next to “Coyote/Fox-Dog Training Grounds.”
Please also voice your opposition to this indefensible practice with the Indiana Natural Resource Commission. Public comments may be posted by going to: http://www.in.gov/nrc/2377.htm and scrolling down to “coyote/fox dog training ground” click on “comment on this rule.”
For more information on coyote and fox penning, see: Hoosiers Against Coyote Penning on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Hoosiers-Against-Coyote-Penning/183806938296321 Thank you!
For more on this important issue, see this website: Training Not Torture http://trainingnottorture.org/welcome.asp
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