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Home » Archive » 2017

TDK conference 2017

Recognising animal abuse and assessing its extent
Kiss Annamária - year 3
University of Veterinary Medicine, Department Animal Breeding, Nutrition and Laboratory Animal Science and Animal Welfare
Supervisor: Dr. Kinga Fodor

Abstract:

Recognizing animal abuse in time, as well as assessing its extent, is of utmost importance in veterinary practice, since animal abuse and the maltreatment of animals are the first steps to aggression against people. However, judging an animal’s wellbeing requires extensive professional knowledge and many years of practical experience. In the last few years, due to media coverage, a wider audience has been affected by the concept or notion of animal protection, and more and more people identify animal protection with a love for animals, resulting in more and more inaccurate and inappropriate remarks and statements regarding animal protection issues.

Through joining the research on animal protection, carried out by the Department of Laboratory Animal Science and Animal Welfare, my aim was to make assessment of animal abuse and the wellbeing of animals measurable for those, too, who are non-professionals in this field. In my work, I have taken into consideration the philosophical, biological, veterinary and legal backgrounds of the issue; I have followed the development and expansion of professional literature, from the first sources about sensing pain to the latest researches, drawing a parallel between animal and human algesia as well as reacting to pain and finding a close connection between them. I have also conducted in-depth interviews with people who are playing an active role in judging cases of animal abuse: police officers, Court clerks, judges and civil animal rights activists. My questions were related to their responsibilities in cases of animal abuse, as well as how the reporting of these cases could be made easier. Based on their responses, I was able to draw the following conclusions: it is essential to provide adequate training for civil animal rights activists; it is important to establish a National Foundation for the Prevention of Cruelty Against Animals, the state operation of which would be a solution to eliminate the financial deficiencies that may arise. The sphere of authority of the police officers and the animal rights activists would be made clear, which would solve the conflicts that arise between them.

The number of unnecessary measures taken due to false reports could be reduced by using a closed reporting system, which may be realized by means of online reporting interfaces. For on-the-spot recording, I think it would be useful to fill in the Lorászkó-checklist, the use of which is beneficial in the judgement procedure, both from a financial point of view and also regarding allocated time.

Based both on the responses I received during the interviews, and a simplified version of an already existing checklist, together with its creator, dr Gábor Lorászkó, I have made an online reporting interface: https://goo.gl/forms/KlTLObZrk1T0KBBv2, which could make the long procedure faster and could be life-saving for the animals, thus it could be a significant step forward to be introduced in daily life.



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