HC Deb 16 March 1885 vol 295 cc1231-2

asked the Chief Secretary to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, If he can state the number of cattle reported to be attacked with pleuro-pneumonia in the North and South Dublin and Rathdown Unions in January and February 1885; the number of cattle so affected in the rest of Ireland, and in England and in Scotland during those months; and, seeing the large export of store cattle that is carried on through the port of Dublin, if some more stringent and successful measures cannot be taken to eradicate that fatal disease from the cowhouses of that city?


The subject referred to in this Question is one of such importance that I think I shall be justified in going into some detail in answering it. It appears that in the month of January last the number of cattle reported to be attacked with pleuro-pneumonia in the North and South Dublin and Rathdown Unions was 138, and in February 166, or a total of 304. In the rest of Ireland during that time there were only nine cattle reported to be attacked—namely, two in January and seven in February. In the same period in England and Scotland the numbers were, for January, 89; for February, 56—a total of 145. The prevalence of this disease in the Dublin dairy-yards has been engaging the careful attention of Lord Spencer, and some time ago he directed that such members of the Veterinary Staff as could be spared for the purpose should devote their special attention to the state of disease and the working of the Contagious Diseases (Animals) Act in the Dublin Unions. Accordingly, since the beginning of February last, four, and sometimes five, Government Veterinary Inspectors have been occupied in making careful examination of the cattle in the dairy-yards of the city and suburbs, and have detected a considerable number of cases of disease. They have also obtained several convictions against persons for failure to report disease in proper time, and for other offences of the kind. Furthermore, an Order in Council has' been passed to enable diseased cattle to be removed for slaughter in properly constructed vans to a specified slaughter-house, instead of having the slaughter carried out in the dairy-yard; and one locality, containing a number of dairy-yards in which disease has been prevalent, was, on the 9th instant, declared to be an infected area. All infected places declared by the local authorities are placed under the supervision of police, and the number of cattle thereon is carefully checked. The infected places are visited by Government Inspectors as often as practicable; and it is hoped that the efforts which are being made will result in a material diminution of the disease in the Unions named.