Chief Veterinary Officer Speaks Out Against Animal Torture – St. Lucia Times

The content originally appeared on: St. Lucia Times News

Saint Lucia’s Chief Veterinary Officer, Dr. Sharmaine Melville-Edwin, has spoken out against animal torture after a social media video of the beheading of a goat.

Two men, one smiling as he holds one of the animal’s back legs, appear in the video.

The incident allegedly occurred in Mon Repos.

Melville-Edwin said she saw the widely circulated video of the goat’s ‘brute force’ decapitation.

She said that was not the humane way.

According to the Chief Veterinary Officer, people must protect the welfare of animals and ensure they immobilise or render the creature unconscious before slaughtering them to minimise pain.

She told St. Lucia Times “that also has positive outcomes for the quality of the meat that you are eating.”

Melville-Edwin warned that it’s an offence to torture an animal or cause it unnecessary suffering before slaughtering it.

“According to the law, that person can be convicted,” she explained.

“Our responsibility is to ensure that animals are indeed humanely slaughtered. We inspect all animals prior to slaughter. We engage our butchers. Butchers are engaged through the Ministry of Health as well, engaged in training activities to help them carry out the process humanely and correctly,” Melville-Edwin stated.

She noted that pre and post-slaughter inspections occur.

“I want to advise persons, if you do not know what your are doing, please, you can contact us for support,” the Chief Veterinary Officer explained, adding that training possibilities exist.

Under the law, torturing animals required for food or aiding and abetting could attract a fine of $3,000 upon summary conviction.

PHOTO: File image of Dr. Sharmaine Melville-Edwin.