The 75th Agricultural Exhibition made an apparent break with tradition this year — the SPCA weren’t invited.
“This year, nothing — they just cut them off,” said the group’s former animal welfare officer Debbie Masters.
She said it’s been customary for the SPCA’s inspectors to receive tickets to the annual show, where the organisation has a trophy named after it for the best riding horse on show.
Ms Masters attended last year’s show on the organisation’s behalf.
However, SPCA officials were absent from day one of the show for the first time in years, she said — and a number of animal welfare issues arose.
“I came across some African Geese in the Jack King Building, where they hold the exhibits for all the poultry. All the animals had food and water, but I noticed that the Geese had no water from 9:30am until 1pm, and it was very hot in that building.”
Government Vet Jonathan Nisbett took care of the matter when informed, she said, and Ms Masters reported no issues at yesterday’s show.
She said she’d also spotted a lame horse presented at a Thursday event.
“I was sitting with about nine equestrians and some tourists — we all noticed it,” she said. “The tourists got up and left.
“Years ago a judge would have excused you from the ring and told you to leave.”
By Jonathan Bell The Royal Gazette