The Portuguese party for the animals (People-Animals-Nature, PAN), has recently presented two bills: one that ends fox hunting in Portugal and another that prohibits cruel hunting methods like the use of packs of hounds and the use of ‘clubbing to death’ techniques.
PAN’s initiatives are in line with the “Movement for the Abolition of Fox Hunting”, a Portuguese citizens’ movement that has launched a petition for the same purpose, collecting more than 10,000 signatures in a very short time.
According to this Movement, fox hunting is a barbaric and cruel activity in which the hunters are allowed to club the foxes to death and to use up to 50 dogs to catch and kill them. Dogs, in this case, serve as a weapon against the fox. The fight between the dogs and a fox always results in the death or near death of the fox. During these fights many dogs end up seriously injured too.
PAN has also pointed out the legal inconsistency of using dogs to kill other animals during hunting, because fights between animals are legally prohibited in Portugal. An exception is made for ‘cultural events’, which can include fox hunting. According to PAN a fight between a fox and 1 to 50 dogs, is no less cruel than a fight between two dogs and therefore the use of packs of hounds for hunting should be banned too.
PAN says that these kinds of hunting methods are morally reprehensible and don’t belong in the 21st century.