Pa. sale barn convicted of animal cruelty

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SALEM, Ohio – The livestock auction in New Holland, Pa., was convicted Feb. 15 of animal cruelty for neglecting three disabled sheep.
District Justice Rodney Hartman fined New Holland Sales Stable $500 each on three counts of animal cruelty.
A message left for sale owner David Kolb was not returned.
What happened. Farm Sanctuary humane officer Keith Mohler filed the case after he euthanized three incapacitated sheep at the sale barn Sept. 3, 2006.
Farm Sanctuary bills itself as the nation’s leading farm animal protection organization.
Mohler said the stockyard failed to provide needed veterinary care or humanely euthanize the downed sheep.
“These workers knew what kind of condition these animals were in and failed to provide them with basic humane consideration. All three sheep were in terrible condition, and one was missing hunks of skin all over her body,” Mohler said.
“Failing to act responsibly and leaving these animals to languish without proper care constitutes a violation of Pennsylvania law.”
The sheep apparently arrived on a truck from Nebraska that also contained 16 to 18 dead sheep.
History. This is the first time the livestock auction has been convicted, but Gene Baur, president of the group, said the organization has a long history with the New Holland sale barn. Farm Sanctuary first filed charges against the sale barn in 1993.
In February 2006, the stockyard was acquitted of animal cruelty on a technicality after leaving a live sheep in a large trash container.
“This stockyard has been aware of problems for years. Each time they said they would take care [of the animals] and not leave animals to languish. If they say they’re going to over and over again, and don’t, we’re going to file charges.
“We try to be reasonable,” Baur said, noting charges against the sale barn weren’t filed in many cases because evidence or witnesses weren’t available.
Enclosed. Baur said the stockyard recently enclosed the catwalk above the stockyard pens to prevent visitors from seeing what was in the pens below.
(Reporter Andrea Myers welcomes feedback by phone at 800-837-3419 or by e-mail at amyers@farmanddairy.com.)

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