Doing the maths!

I was never one for numbers. There is a real possibility I have dyscalculia but I wasn’t privileged with that ‘get me out of trouble’ diagnoses when I was constantly sent to the board to complete maths problems in school. Yes, setting someone up for a downfall comes to mind but I’m sure I gave the others in my class a sense of ‘feeling better about their ability’. I had none. The board work did not cure my disability much to my teacher’s frustration nor did a ruler across my hands.
Roll on a few decades, there are certain numbers I can read when they come in the form of statistics and when there is an emotional attachment to them. To read the latest equine seizure statistics from Clare leaves me with a sense of outrage coupled with ‘is this a joke?’ It’s hard to celebrate the unrealistically low figures like 18 horses seized in 2017 and even less for this year so far. Because behind these low figures are all the horses that died in fields from hunger, or untreated illnesses, and in one case, after being attacked by dogs – all horses that should have been seized! What about all the horses starving right now that won’t make the 2018 figures and who should be seized? What about all the horses taken in by rescues after being reported to the council or the department? All the horses let down by the same bodies. So the latest statistics are no realistic reflection of the state of equine welfare in Clare. They scream ‘seizure tokenism’.
This morning I read a notice on a fence issued by the department. A notice placed after many concerning calls to the department for two mares and a foal in a field with nothing to eat. The notice asked the owners to provide feed & water and outlined what would happen if they didn’t. Did the official who cable-tied the notice not take into consideration the emaciated foal or her mother with her ribs protruding and a belly full of worms. Did the official scan for chips? Did they check for an equine number? He would have got close enough as these horses are so starved of attention that they are so overly interested and affectionate when someone stops off at their fence. Yes, hay arrived today but not hay a starving horse would be grateful for. They should be part of the 2018 seizure statistics; they won’t be.
I’m sure the statistics for pounds nationwide are also a source of much upset for dog lovers and related rescuers. Especially the numbers PTS. Behind all of these statistics are human faces and behavior that is far removed from normative or mindful of animal needs. Behind these figures are the dogs who never made the cut when it came to being rehomed, or when it came to being assessed for rehoming. They unfortunately became part of statistics. Their names, their personalities, their stories reduced to a number.
So when you have local public figures jumping on a celebratory bandwagon to fly the flag of low seizure numbers or low PTS statistics, you want to take them from their ‘head in the clouds’ pedestal and put them in a field with a sick mare who is feeding a foal, and tell them how her owners won’t get the vet for her. How somebody hand feeds her to make sure she is getting some sort of nutrition. You want them to look at the empty water buckets that are filled by people who are not their owners and you want them to speak to the landowner who has not given permission for their land to be used. You want them to drive into certain areas where horses lives are limited by a few feet of rope where they are sustained by the grass beneath them and are at the mercy of those who own them to untie them and move them to a new patch every day. You want them to visit pounds unannounced and see the fear behind closed doors; fear that could be alleviated by a simple thing
called ‘care’.
What hope is there to reduce the amount of dogs seeking homes when county councils award licenses to puppy farms to keep breeding – the same breeders who do not provide the basics for their breeding bitches and dogs kept under lock and key? What hope is there when the law of the land for animal welfare is not consistently enforced when it is broken? Law enforcement should not be ‘pick and miss’. Why should the same laws be applied differently when the animal welfare issue is the same?
The only hope left in this country for most animals let down by humans are rescuers. Rescue: the only light in this dismally dark animal welfare tunnel. The keeper of the light and power is a minister who fails to see the darkness. Maybe it’s time rescues guided him through it until he has his moment of enlightenment. Until that happens he stands over a law that is as futile as an empty bucket for a dehydrated horse.

3 thoughts on “Doing the maths!

  1. The statistics are a joke. I would love the powers that be, to open their frigging eyes. Enforcement of laws to protect, heftier penalties for offenders… All offenders. A reform of seizure, impoundment and rehoming.
    This is a national disaster, the overpaid, under worked numpties should be at ground zero helping, sopporting. Ground zero being every piece of bloody ground with horses on, and zero to eat, zero care given by so called owners. Ground zero being the sheds with zero light and zero love for the fuzzy little souls, bred until dead.
    I could show them photos that should chill them to the bone, we all could. We shouldn’t have to. They should care enough to go and see it, and then go and fix it. Not because there’s an election coming up, but because they should have some compassion and empathy.
    I am doing the math at the minute, trying to make the income match the outgoings best I can, but typically, it never rains but it pours, car trouble, family trouble, out of hours vets, routine vets. Jeez.
    Where there’s muck there’s money…….. 😂
    Who actually started that rumor? I have a shovel for them.

    Did you hear about the statistician who drowned crossing a river?

    It was three feet deep on average.

    Love from us all up here.

    Liked by 1 person

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