Letter: Foxhunting

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The Independent Online
Sir: Concern about foxhunting smacks not only of hypocrisy but also of almost total ignorance of nature's unpleasant realities and a compulsion to see animals only through the eyes of Beatrix Potter.

Wild animals die alone and usually in fear and pain in the jaws or claws of a predator. If, like the fox, they have no natural predators then untreated disease or injury is the usual natural cause of death with dehydration providing the final agony.

Inconvenient though it may be for the campaign against foxhunting, animal suffering is a much greater evil than animal death. If conducted properly, foxhunting and the other blood sports are capable of delivering quicker and more humane deaths to their quarry than they would otherwise suffer in the wild.

If foxhunting is banned, no-one should imagine that the lot of the fox will have been improved. But then, one suspects that that is hardly the point.

STEPHEN MULLINER

Haslemere, Surrey

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