Be proactive to prevent pets being culled; use this template to send a letter to your MP.
Dear (MP’s name),
My reason for contacting you today is that I am concerned
for my pet chickens. I know I speak for
many poultry keepers when I say that we would be devastated if the government
were to decide to order a culling of our beloved flocks, due to the avian influenza
Most of us regard our chickens as pets, and therefore part
of the family. We spend hard-earned cash
caring for their needs, including expensive veterinary fees. We spend a lot of time with them which
contributes to our own health and well being.
What we as poultry keepers fear most is a knee-jerk reaction
by the government to cull all poultry, without making a distinction between
commercial poultry and poultry kept as pets.
We would prefer to see the government working with pet
poultry keepers, educating them to recognise symptoms, publishing a list of
vets who can be relied on to provide a quick diagnosis, and only cull pets who
test positive for the virus.
I urge you to take pet poultry seriously, and bear in mind
that they are the sixth most popular pet (source: pet food Manufacturer’s Association). Therefore the knock-on effect to the
businesses that supply our needs should be considered too.
We do recognise the efforts made by the government already,
and appreciate that you have made it clear that the risk to humans is very low.
However, the media does tend to sensationalise, which can result in bad feeling
and ignorant attitudes towards pet poultry keepers.
(MP’s name), please consider our pets when the matter is
discussed in Parliament, and don’t let our precious poultry friends be killed
for no good reason.