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International Animal Rescue Saving animals from suffering around the world

Illegal reptile market disallowed by Brentwood Council and Shenfield High School

Brentwood Borough Council and Shenfield High School have been praised by animal welfare groups for disallowing a reptile market that would have taken place at the school on Sunday 27 September 2009.

The selling of pets at markets was outlawed under Section 2 of the Pet Animals Act 1951 to prevent animal suffering. However, reptile markets involving large-scale law-breaking have been taking place around the country as a result of poor Local Authority enforcement. The Council and the school were provided with evidence that there would be trading at the proposed event and took swift action to prevent it. Evidence that reptile markets pose a significant threat to human health was also presented to the Council and the school.

Elaine Toland of the Animal Protection Agency said:

"We commend the Council and the school for taking this decision. The outcome is obviously good news for the animals and they have acted in the best interests of the children who use the school."

Appalling animal welfare conditions have been documented at recent reptile markets. There is very little regard for temperature control, ventilation and humidity or for the cage furnishings necessary to provide for important biological and behavioural needs whilst the animals are on display. Reptiles and amphibians are not suited to captivity and do not adapt. Therefore, these animals suffer substantial trauma when traded under such poor conditions.

The animal protection groups are concerned that the reptile club will now attempt to organise an illegal underground market. They are appealing for any information, particularly from venue managers in the area, and urging them not to be coaxed into facilitating this type of event.

The Animal Protection Agency is an organisation focused on ceasing the trade in wild animals as pets. It works closely with International Animal Rescue, which is dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of suffering animals.

For more background information or for photographs, please contact Elaine Toland on 01273 674253 / 07986 535024.