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Only use experienced slaughterers for home Qurbani: SPCA

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Qurbani farms in the Western Cape will be experiencing an increase in traffic over the coming days as Muslims prepare for the annual religious celebration of Eid-ul-adha (Eid of Sacrifice). Qurbani rituals will commence from Tuesday 21st August and thousands of livestock will be slaughtered over the coming week.

The Cape of Good Hope (CoGH) SPCA has called on those planning to slaughter sheep, goats or cattle to follow these strict guidelines to ensure that the animals do not suffer unnecessarily.

According to the Animals Protection Act (No.71 of 1962):

-All animals must be confined in such a manner that allows them adequate space, ventilation, shelter, food and water;
-No animal should be picked up by its fleece, dragged, hit, chased or prodded;
-Animals should be restrained humanely while being transported and when being slaughtered;
-No animal should be tied by its legs with bailing twine and crammed into the back of car boots or laid on their sides in the back of bakkies;

-When due to be slaughtered, animals should be laid on their sides and not on their backs to avoid distress. -Animals should also not be forced to stand or kneel during slaughter;
-Knives used for the slaughter must also remain extremely sharp so that the slaughtering remains as humane as possible;
-Only experienced people should perform the slaughtering. Inexperienced, lay persons who attempt to perform the slaughters often cause horrific trauma and pain to the animal.

The CoGH SPCA advises those who are inexperienced, but want to partake in Qurbani, to contact the CoGH SPCA Inspectorate on 021 700 4158/59 or after hours on 083 326 1604 for referral to experienced establishments.

Members of the public who do wish to perform Qurbani at their residential premises must ensure that the animals are slaughtered humanely by an experienced person. Permission must be obtained from your local City of Cape Town environmental health office.

The SPCA has strongly discouraged the slaughter of cattle in places that do not have the appropriate infrastructure in place to adequately and humanely restrain the animals prior to slaughter.

The animal rights organisation has urged the Muslim Judicial Council (MJC), the Halaal Trust and local farm owners to ensure the 2018 Eid-ul-adha is held not only in accordance with Islam, but also in accordance with the law.

“We respectfully urge the MJC and farm owners to work together to ensure that all animals are treated with respect and compassion during this time,” said CoGH SPCA Senior Inspector Manager Marais.

SPCA Inspectors will be stationed at Qurbani farms to ensure that animals are sacrificed humanely and will encourage and offer to pre- or post-stun animals to facilitate this. They will also be monitoring the transportation, handling and housing of the estimated 5 000 animals destined for slaughter as part of this festival. VOC

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