Prolonged lockdown will make welfare suffer

25 Jul 2020

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By Josh Loeb

Lockdowns across Europe cannot carry on forever because the animal welfare costs are too high, the president of the Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (FVE) has argued.

In a webinar broadcast on 31 May, FVE president Rens van Dobbenburgh said that if countries in Europe persisted with restrictions on what services vets can provide, animal welfare would be badly impacted.

He said the problem was compounded because the stricter the lockdown, the higher the financial losses borne by vet practices – something that would have knock-on effects on animal health and welfare in the longer term because it meant fewer vets on hand to treat animals.

Van Dobbenburgh confirmed that, while countries in Europe were currently at different stages of their lockdowns, many were still far from ‘back to normal’, with many borders still closed or partially closed, social distancing in place and mandatory mask wearing...