Eyes on Animals was permitted to participate and inspect the loading of pigs at a farm in Zeeland onto two transport trucks belonging to the company Vaex. The pigs were destined for a long distance journey to Slovakia and to Italy. Eyes on Animals assisted in the loading to see for ourselves how it could be done calmly and responsibly,without screaming or hitting. The employees handled the pigs correctly and there was very little squeeling or panic among the pigs. Two pigs were quickly identified by Vaex for being partly lame and thus were not loaded to avoid potential suffering problems during the long voyage.
Eyes on Animals thanks Vaex and the farmer van Genugten in Zeeland for being open towards Eyes on Animals and for taking measures to reduce stress during loading and transport.
Although Eyes on Animals is in principle against the long-distance transport of animals, we very much acknowledge companies that are at least trying to do things in a responsible and law-abiding manner.
All farmed animals are transported at least once in their lifetime. Journeys can last anywhere from a few minutes to a few weeks. Transport is known to be one of the most stressful experiences for animals. They are moved from a familiar territory to a new one and are held often under very crowded conditions. They get separated from each other and mixed with unfamiliar animals, which can lead to stress and fighting. Sometimes there is no water and feed available or the animals cannot reach it. Animals that wish to lie down during the journey are at risk of being trampled by the others. Sometimes conditions on board are very cold or very hot, leading to animals dying from hypothermia and suffocation. There are laws in place to prevent these types of problems, but there is very little official inspection during the journey to check if these laws are respected. Eyes on Animals regularly trails and checks livestock transport consignments to see if the welfare of the animals is respected during transit.