Livestock Marketing Association (LMA) has reviewed recently released video of improper animal handling at Ontario Livestock Sales, Ontario, California, and found much of the behavior demonstrated by Ontario market management and employees to the animals under their care clearly breaches LMA’s code of accepted animal handling practices at livestock market facilities. The video was secretly filmed by a member of the animal rights activist group Mercy for Animals, posing as a market employee, earlier this year.
Ontario Livestock Sales is an independent market, and not a member of Livestock Marketing Association or the California Livestock Auction Markets Association.
San Bernardino County prosecutors have filed misdemeanor animal abuse charges against the market owner and seven market employees.
LMA has worked tirelessly for many years to educate member and non-member markets regarding proper animal handling techniques and animal care. The organization emphasizes proper animal handling through comprehensive education and training materials, regular ongoing animal handling audits as well as extensive outreach by LMA staff persons committed to animal handling education and training.
Livestock auction markets are dedicated to assuring the well-being of the animals sold through their facilities. “As temporary stewards of the animals consigned to our markets, we have a duty and responsibility to assure that healthy animals remain healthy, and weak and injured animals are properly handled and euthanized if necessary,” said David Macedo, LMA President and a California market operator. “Ontario Livestock Sales is neither representative of the standard of care that livestock auctions typically provide nor ‘commonplace’ in our industry, as stated by a Mercy for Animals spokesperson,” he said.
CLAMA President Cindy Tews urged her fellow market operators to renew their commitment to proper handling of livestock at markets throughout the United States. “We must continue to strive to do the right thing for the animals under our care, because it is the right thing to do,” said Tews.
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