Ban trapping, snaring in P.E.I. urges animal advocate organization

Animal Justice, a group that advocates for the humane treatment of animals, is pushing the province of P.E.I. to ban trapping and snaring, saying too many pets are losing their lives or suffering because of the practice.

Recent situations in which pets became entangled have prompted the government to examine its trapping rules

Pets can get caught in traps that are intended for wildlife. (CBC)

A national group that advocates for humane treatment of animals is pushing the province of P.E.I. to ban trapping and snaring.

Too many companion animals are losing their lives or suffering because of the practice, says Animal Justice.

"It's heartbreaking, it really is heartbreaking," said Camille Labchuck, lawyer and the non-profit organization's executive director. 

"Traps and snares are extremely inhumane and they cause untold animal suffering. Animals die slowly, they suffer painful injuries and it's unacceptable in our modern society."

Trapping and snaring is a long-standing tradition in P.E.I., says Environment Minister Robert Mitchell. (Courtesy of GLIFWC)

"If enough citizens mobilize and ask them to ban trapping and snaring, ask them to ensure that we can go out and enjoy a walk in nature with our pet dog, then perhaps we can get some action," said Labchuck.

There has been a public "outcry," she added.

A 'deeper dive' into regulations

"I have received dozens of phone calls and emails on this issue. I'm sure the minister has as well, and I suggest that people need to keep up the pressure and tell government that we need to ban these cruel devices."

Labchuck met with Environment Minister Robert Mitchell on Monday to discuss the issue.

Mitchell said snaring and trapping is a long-standing tradition on the Island, but he appreciates the group's concerns and has asked a committee of officials with the province's Forests, Fish and Wildlife Division to take a closer look at regulations.

Animal Justice executive director Camille Labchuck says it's 'heartbreaking' when companion animals get caught in traps and snares. (CBC)

"There was a couple of occurrences just prior to Christmas that certainly brought some things to light in regards to pet owners and pets falling to snares," said Mitchell.

"At the time, I tasked some department officials to take a deeper dive in regards to the regulations. Are they appropriate? Is there something we should look at there? Is there anything we should look at in regards access issues to both public and private lands? And do we have the best practices in place that we need to?"

Mitchell said he expects the committee will come back with recommendations in three or four months.


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