Animal Aid Protest Against Dover District Council’s Exploitation of Reindeer

Posted on the 7th December 2022

Dressed as a reindeer and in reindeer ‘antlers’, Animal Aid carried out a peaceful demonstration today (07/12/2022) asking Dover District Council not to exploit live reindeer at their Christmas event this year.

Dover District Council (DDC) are planning to exhibit two live reindeer in Dover Market Square for five hours at their Meet the Reindeer’ Christmas event on 10th December. Confined to a pen, they will likely have nowhere to hide, from noisy, excitable people, demanding interaction. These conditions can be hugely stressful and can have severe impacts on the health and welfare of such sensitive animals, who are highly adapted to roaming vast distances in arctic conditions. The animals will also endure the additional stress of being transported to the event to be displayed. 

The majority of local authorities successfully organise fun and educational festive celebrations which do not use live animals. This includes Dover TOWN Council, who last weekend held their Winter Light Up event. Their giant character lanterns looked stunning, and the extensive range of activities planned were a fantastic example of how event organisers can plan creative and inspiring events without exploiting animals. With such creativity and compassion being displayed, it is a great shame that such a positive event will be followed by the exploitation of these amazing and sensitive animals, a week later. 

After the demonstration, Animal Aid hand delivered a letter to the council, signed by the directors of Animal Aid, Freedom for Animals, OneKind and Born Free, which highlights the welfare issues associated with these displays. The letter, which has also been delivered to 58 other events around the UK, asks organisers planning to use reindeer, to join the growing number of businesses and public services that have decided to no longer feature live animals in their Christmas events. Read about our collaboration for reindeer with other animal welfare organisations here.  

How can I help?  

Order a Free Antler Pack

Read more posts...

Live Exports Ban: Does it go far enough?

Yesterday, we shared the news that the Animal Welfare (Livestock Exports) Bill has passed its final stage in Parliament and will soon be enshrined into law. But does it go far enough?

Posted 15 May 2024

Breaking: Britain’s historic ban on live exports

We’re delighted to share the news that the Animal Welfare (Livestock Exports) Bill has passed its final stage in Parliament, delivering on the government’s longstanding commitment to ending the export of animals for slaughter and...

Posted 14 May 2024