If You Own or keep a Horse Or Pony, Donkey or Mule Should You Need a Licence?
With the increase in fly grazing, theft, cruelty and neglect is there now a stronger case for owners and keepers of horses and ponies to be licensed?
Why ask the question?
The current passport system does not address the problems of poor animal welfare and theft. The passport system was introduced to help identify and prevent some horses and ponies from entering the human food chain; it was also intended to reduce the amount of equine theft. It goes some way to identifying the animal (compulsory photographs of the horse would help) but not the person responsible for their welfare
One suggestion is that the owner/keeper details should also include a national insurance number or driving license or passport number, thus offering proof of a person’s identity. If the registered owner is not the keeper this should also be documented with a record of who, when and where that animal was loaned to. This could be a detachable page given to the keeper while the owner retains the main passport
So is it practical for an owner/keeper license to be included as part of the current system? Would this make the owner or keeper of a horse more accountable to the authorities should the need arise?
Why Have an Owner or Keeper License For All Horses, Ponies, Donkeys and Mules?
1) It could help to reduce the neglect and cruelty if the owner/keeper is easier to trace and held accountable
2) It may reduce the number of horse thefts
3) Possible reduction in the amount of poor and indiscriminate breeding
4) It may elevate the status of horses and ponies, donkeys and mules
5) Relatively simple to include in the current horse passport system
6) The current passport asks for owner details only, despite it being common practise for horses to be kept by others
Why NOT have an Owner or keepers Licence For all Horses, Ponies, Donkeys and Mules?
1) It may be too difficult to enforce
2) Owner details are currently included and yet some owners are not held accountable
3) It would add to the cost of horse ownership
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