The Indiana Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is proposing to legalize the practice of penning wild coyotes and foxes as “bait” in dog training enclosures where dogs are released into a small enclosure to chase down disoriented wild animals. These bait animals have no chance of escape and are often chased to death or ripped apart alive by the pursuing hounds. This practice, even when regulated, is nothing less than inhumane. Some proposed rules for the penning structures:
· Requiring coyotes and foxes being used as bait to be spayed and neutered and allowing only seven days for recovery before being pursued.
· Allowing up to 175 dogs to be released in a pen at a time.
· Allowing coyotes and foxes to be chased for 16 continuous hours.
· Allowing coyotes and foxes as young as seven months old to be released into the pens.
· Allowing coyotes and foxes with fresh trap injuries to be pursued.
Please submit a comment to the Indiana NRC at http://www.in.gov/nrc/2377.htm, scroll to “Coyote/Fox-Dog Training Grounds” and click on “Comment on This Rule.” You must fill out all information asked of you or your comments will not be counted. The DNR is currently in the “public input” stage with the next hearing scheduled for March 15th. Then e-mail Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels (sign petition) to urge NRC to reject this proposal! For information on Born Free USA, please visit us at http://bornfreeusa.org/.
NRC’s recommendation to legalize penning facilities in Indiana is appalling. Coyote and fox penning is nothing more than a blood sport fraught with cruelty and illicit activities, such as the illegal wildlife trade to stock the pens. Also associated with penning are disease outbreaks such as rabies and other costly zoonotic diseases amongst the captured wildlife. Simply put, penning is inherently cruel and ethically wrong. Please urge the NRC to reject this proposal to legalize penning and instead follow the lead of Florida and become the 40th state in banning this gruesome activity.