The vast majority of the approximately 318,000 female pigs kept for breeding on Manitoba farms spend most of their adult lives confined in sow stalls. These barren, metal-barred, concrete-floored pens, measuring only approximately two by seven feet, do not allow sows to turn around and prevent them from engaging in their most basic natural behaviours. As a result, sow stalls severely compromise the animals' psychological and physical well-being.
Confined sows exhibit aggression and "stereotypies" -- repetitive, pointless behaviours such as bar-biting -- which are regarded as evidence of mental suffering. They also routinely suffer from injuries, lacerations, muscle weakness, lameness, and bone diseases such as arthritis as a result of their lengthy immobilization. Canadians for Ethical Treatment of Food Animals
(CETFA) and the Canadian Coalition for Farm Animals
(CCFA) are asking Manitoba Pork to commit to a mandated phase-out of sow stalls by 2017, and to house sows in groups on straw.
Please support CETFA and CCFA's campaign to end the cruelty of sow stalls in Manitoba by asking Andrew Dickson, General Manager of Manitoba Pork, to completely phase-out sow stalls by 2017. To learn more, go to http://helpthepigs.com
We are writing to express our concern about the widespread use of sow stalls in Manitoba's pork industry and the suffering they inflict upon sows. In the wake of many countries and states around the world instituting sow stall phase-outs and bans, for animal care and welfare reasons, we ask that Manitoba take the lead on this issue in Canada and institute a sow stall ban across the province by the year 2017.
We also ask that you recommend pork producers provide straw to support sows' behavioural need to forage and maternal desire to build a nest for their oncoming piglets.
Thank you in advance for caring about animals and promoting their well-being.