A 52-year-old farmer from Co. Armagh, Northern Ireland, has been found guilty of the transportation of a cow which was not fit for journey and causing unnecessary suffering.
Brian Cullen was ordered to pay a fine of £500 plus a £15 levy at Newry Magistrates Court yesterday (Monday, February 7).
After a cow belonging to Cullen was transported to an abattoir, an on-duty Official Veterinarian (OV) said that the animal was emaciated, with a very swollen lower right leg.
The severe nature of the swelling and the poor body condition of the animal showed the condition had been long-standing.
The Armagh man was thus convicted of one charge of transporting or causing to be transported a cow which was not fit for journey, contrary to Regulations 51(a) of the Welfare of Animals (Transport) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006 and Council Regulation (EC) No 1/2005; and one charge of by reason or an act or failure to act by himself caused unnecessary suffering to a cow and he ought reasonably to have known that the said act or failure to act would have that effect or was likely to do so, contrary to Section 4(1) of the Welfare of Animals Act (Northern Ireland) 2011.
To note, the Welfare of Animals (Transport) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2006 also requires that animals must be fit to travel and must be cared for if they fall ill or are injured during transport.
The animals must be accompanied by competent persons and must be transported to their destinations without undue delay.