Ask Minnesota to Ban Lethal Traps

  • by: Judith B.
  • recipient: Mark Dayton, Governor, Minnesota
John Reynold's dog, a springer spaniel called Penni, ran off last December. Half an hour later he found her body in a trap. Reports have come in of several other pets going the same way in the last few weeks.

"Body-grip" traps lure and kill medium-sized carnivores. Baited with game meat, the traps instantly break the neck of an animal. They are intended to kill raccoons, fishers and bobcats but are equally attractive, and lethal, to dogs and cats.

John Reynolds is a trapper himself and highly critical of how these traps are used. In Minnesota, it's perfectly legal to set them in most public areas, including ones popular with dog walkers.

Reynolds wants tighter restrictions on the traps, but whether they should be used at all is debateable. When raccoons become a nuisance, there are far safer solutions. Fishers and bobcats are not really pests at all - they are trapped for their fur.

Ask Minnesota to ban unnecessary and unsafe trapping. 
We the undersigned ask that you end the use of lethal traps for raccoons, bobcats and fishers. These traps are not specific; they will catch and kill any medium-sized carnivore that shows an interest, including dogs and cats. Several reports of pet dogs being killed this way have been in the news recently.

In the event that raccoons become a nuisance, usually in residential areas, there are far safer ways to deal with the problem, including live trapping, the use of animal-proof garbage cans and, in extreme cases, shooting.

Bobcats and fishers are not really pests. Although neither species is in serious danger in Minnesota at present, populations are still relatively small. Trapping wild animals for fur should be a thing of the past - there is no good reason to allow the practice to continue today.

We ask that you end the lethal trapping of wild carnivores.

Thank you for your attention.
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