Unhappy Christmas for reindeer

Posted on the 27th November 2018

From roaming wild on the tundra to the shopping centres of the UK. Animal Aid exposes what these reindeer endure before the Christmas season begins...

Kicked and yelled at. Animals with significant fur loss and raw-looking exposed skin. Loaded onto trucks and transported up and down the country to noisy, crowded shopping centres.

Does this sound like a happy Christmas to you?

Reindeer at Stratford Shopping Centre 2014Each year, as Christmas approaches, live reindeer are used as part of seasonal displays in places such as shopping and garden centres.

These gentle animals are sometimes transported long distances and often held in small pens for long hours, where they are exposed to bright lights, noisy crowds and a constant stream of excitable shoppers. With no place to retreat, their health and welfare inevitably suffer.

Throughout 2018, Animal Aid investigators have monitored the conditions in which reindeer are kept in captivity. Our evidence shows that their misery begins much sooner than December.

By placing hidden cameras and repeatedly visiting facilities which offer reindeer ‘for hire’, we captured the reality of the reindeers’ lives.

Reindeer with significant fur loss

Reindeer with significant fur loss.

We found underweight animals with visible ribs, and animals demonstrating signs of disease, such as heavy diarrhoea. Worst of all, we captured footage of a staff member kicking reindeer, shouting abuse and slamming a gate in the face of one animal.

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Please boycott live reindeer events this winter!

This reindeer has fluid coming from her eye
This reindeer has fluid coming from her eye

Government figures requested by Animal Aid show that from 2014 to 2017, a total of 571 reindeer were imported into the UK, from Sweden, Finland and Norway.

During the same period, 54 reindeer carcasses were examined under post mortem and found to have died from a range of problems including gastric and digestive issues, malnutrition, and wasting and nervous conditions.

Animal Aid is calling for an end to these outdated and cruel events.

We have contacted shopping centres and local councils up and down the country calling for a ban on the use of live reindeer.

Speak up for reindeer

Please support our campaign to protect these majestic animals. We urge you to boycott reindeer events and encourage others not to attend.

Worker kicking reindeer at Kent Reindeer Centre

Taken from footage captured at Kent Reindeer Centre

We are asking event organisers to say no to using live animals such as reindeer, and to embrace cruelty-free festivities instead.

Your gift will enable us to continue to expose the suffering and mistreatment of reindeer. Our investigators spend hours uncovering the truth.

Please make a donation today and help us to continue this important work.

Please donate now

Best wishes,

Isobel Hutchinson

P.S. You can also order a free Antler Action pack

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