Christmas market with live reindeer is cancelled after animal rights activists complained it was CRUEL
- Canopy Market in London has been called off following animal cruelty criticism
- Freedom for Animals said children would ’cause great distress’ to the reindeer
- A campaigner said they should not be allowed in the UK or paraded for children
- The animal group said the animals are ‘sensitive’ and not to be used as ‘props’
A Christmas market featuring live reindeer has been called off after animal activists complained children would ’cause great distress’ to the animals.
Organisers at Canopy Market in London have abandoned plans to hold the children’s event after receiving comments about alleged cruelty from Freedom for Animals.
Fabio Diu, who runs the market, said: ‘We did get comments about concern over using reindeer and for us animal welfare is critically important and something we take very seriously.’
A Christmas market in London featuring live reindeer has been called off after protest group Freedom for Animals slammed it for cruelty and causing the animals distress
Canopy have featured live animals from ‘an educational point of view’ and decided reindeers were not in keeping with their values.
Freedom for Animals have forced seven more reindeer events to cancel, including Winter Funland in Manchester, Knutsford Christmas Weekend in Cheshire and the Christmas lights switch-on at Princes Risborough in Buckinghamshire.
Animal group Northern Unity protested outside Raby Castle in County Durham as families visited a reindeer display.
Canopy Market in London decided to cancel amid the criticism as ‘animal welfare is critically important and something [they] take very seriously’. Pictured is the Duchess of Cornwall meeting reindeer in the gardens of Clarence House in London
Protester Kathy Barley, 57, told The Times: ‘Transporting these animals is very distressing. They are kept in bright lights with lots of noise. Kids will stick their hands through.’
They are calling for a boycott of live reindeer events as they claim the animals suffer anxiety, low fertility and high calf mortality.
Tor Bailey, campaign manager of Animal Aid, claimed the reindeer are ‘not props to be paraded around and used for entertainment’.
Freedom for Animals have forced seven more reindeer (pictured at Kingsholm Stadium in Gloucester on December 20) events to cancel, including Winter Funland in Manchester, Knutsford Christmas Weekend in Cheshire and the Christmas lights switch-on at Princes Risborough in Buckinghamshire
This comes just days after the RSPCA warned reindeers should not be used at Santa’s grottos because they get too stressed.
Dr Ros Clubb, senior scientific manager in wildlife, said the animals ‘get stressed very easily and are very susceptible to many health and welfare problems’.
People attending the live reindeer events ‘may not be able to sport the problems until it is too late’.
The semi-wild deer are not the same as deer native the UK which means it is more difficult to meet their needs