The sheep market in Leeuwarden was visited today by two Eyes on Animals inspectors. We have visited the cattle market in Leeuwarden before, but it was the first time we went to the sheep market. There were about a thousand animals; almost all sheep and some goats.
The market made a decent impression, certainly better than other sheep markets we visited before. The animals had straw bedding and in most pens there was a bucket of water. There was plenty of room in the majority of the pens. Some pens were a bit crowded, but in all cases the animals could lie down.
Unfortunately some people moved the animals to other pens in a rough manner, lifting them partly by the tail. This is painful for the animals and is not in compliance with the law. The market manager said he noticed it as well and he promised to address the persons in question, so that the situation will not occur again. Due to the pleasant contact with the market manager and most other people present at the market we felt welcome; there was an open and relaxed atmosphere. Should improvements to animal welfare be needed in the future, we feel that we can attain them in a friendly and open manner together with the managers.