38. Colonel BURN
asked the Home Secretary if he is aware that worn-out and emaciated horses are being bought for exportation to the Continent; and will he take steps to put an end to this traffic or, at any rate, insist on such a careful inspection to ensure that no horse unfit for work ever leaves this country?
The PARLIAMENTARY SECRETARY to the MINISTRY of AGRICULTURE (Sir A. Boscawen)
I have been asked to reply. The Diseases of Animals Act, 1910, as amended by the Exportation of Horses Act, 1914, prohibits the exportation of any horse, ass or mule, unless it is certified by a veterinary inspector that the animal can be shipped, and is capable of being worked without cruelty. This Act is now effectively in operation, and the class of horse referred to in the question would not pass the inspectors, who have power where necessary to order the slaughter of unfit animals. Steps have also been taken with a view to preventing the conveyance by rail to the port of animals which cannot be carried without suffering.
Does my hon. Friend know that advertisements have been inserted in the papers asking for these decrepit horses, and surely something 1479 can be done to stop that particular practice?
Sir A. BOSCAWEN
I am sure that the Act is being put into operation, and if my hon. and gallant Friend can give me any cases of this sort of thing happening, I will certainly cause inquiry to be made.
§ Sir J. BUTCHER
Does my hon. Friend realise that only the other day six out of eight horses which were being carried in a truck to Hull for exportation were—