§ Amendments reported (according to Order).
§ Clause 3:
§ Powers of Board of Agriculture and Fisheries.
§ 3.—(1) The Board of Agriculture and Fisheries may, by order made subject to the provisions of this section, add any other operation to the operations specified in any schedule to this Act, and 759 any operation so added shall be deemed to be an operation specified in that schedule, and may transfer an operation from one schedule to another, and the Board of Agriculture and Fisheries may also, by order made as aforesaid, extend any provision of this Act to any domestic animal to which it does not at the time apply, with such modifications or additions as may appear to that Board to be necessary. The Board may, by order made subject to the provisions of this section, declare any substance to be a suitable general anæsthetic or a suitable local anæsthetic for the purposes of this Act, and any substance so declared shall be deemed to be a general anæsthetic or local anæsthetic, as the case may be, of sufficient power to prevent the animal feeling pain if properly applied.
§ VISCOUNT CHAPLIN
I shall not detain your Lordships for more than a moment at this hour, but my object in moving an Amendment to Clause 3 is to prevent the issue of another of those innumerable confusing Orders by which farmers in this country have been worried almost to death by different Government Departments during the past few years. I wish to save them from that intolerable nuisance in the future. The words I wish to omit are as follows—and the Board of Agriculture and Fisheries may also, by Order made as aforesaid, extend any provision of this Act to any domestic animal to which it does not at the time apply, with such modifications or additions as may appear to that Board to be necessary.These words would affect farmers in particular, because they would be adding to the numerous animals already referred to in the schedule.
I own that to me the words do not really seem to be necessary. The Committee gave great attention to this subject and thrashed out the whole thing. While I recognise the admirable work which my noble friend has done in carrying, or nearly carrying—I hope he will carry through to-night—a very much needed measure, I do not think this proposal, of which I wish to get rid, is necessary. On the other hand, I cannot help recognising the good work my noble friend has done and if he really presses it as a matter that he considers of great necessity—and he is the man who is responsible for the Bill throughout—then I do not think I will press it to a Division. But I hope he will agree. I beg to move.
Clause 3, page 2, line 9, leave out from ("and") to ("the") in line 13.—(Viscount Chaplin.)
§ EARL STANHOPE
I hope the noble Viscount will not press this Amendment, although, after his very kind speech, it is rather difficult for me to refuse to accept it. It really makes the Bill too much of a cast-iron pattern, and I am sure my noble friend himself would desire to bring in certain operations not at present in the Bill. For instance, I think we should all agree that, in due time, such operations as the spaying of sows should be brought into the Bill and anæsthetics made compulsory. If this Amendment is carried it would mean that a new Bill would have to be passed through both Houses of Parliament for the purpose, and I can only tell your Lordships that the Member who was in charge of this. Bill in another place, and who really originated the whole measure, has been struggling for several years in order to get the Bill through Parliament, and it is only now that there is some chance of passing it into law. Therefore, I think we cannot hope to get any Bill of the same character without great difficulty, and I suggest that it would be a great advantage to keep the Bill as elastic as possible, so that it can be made to cover such operations as that to which I have referred. I hope the noble Viscount will not press the Amendment.
§ VISCOUNT CHAPLIN
I should be sorry to see the Bill postponed for another seven years and, as that is the alternative which the noble Earl offers, I will not press the Amendment.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn
§ Clause 4:
§ 4. In this Act, except the context otherwise requires, the expression "horse" includes pony, mule, jennet, or donkey; a horse is deemed to be two years old on the first day of the second January after it was born.
§ VISCOUNT CHAPLIN moved to leave out "a horse is deemed to be two years old on the first day of the second January after it was born." The noble Viscount said: There is really no object in the use of these words now. They did apply to the first Bill, but now they are altogether superflous, and I move that they be omitted.
Clause 4, page 2, line 37, leave out fr3m ("donkey") to the end of the clause.—(Viscount Chaplin.)
§ On Question, Amendment agreed to.761
§ Third Schedule:
- 1. Ovariotomy.
- 2. Operations for actinomycosis.
- 3. Laparotomy.
- 4. Amputation of penis, mamma, uterus.
- 5. Dishorning cattle over three months old.
§ VISCOUNT CHAPLIN moved to substitute the following for the last line of the Third Schedule: "Dishorning cattle over one month old." The noble Viscount said: The object of this Amendment is one with which I am certain everybody will agree. It has been proved up to the hilt before the Committee that, under certain conditions, the dishorning of cattle is an exceedingly painful and cruel operation, and the Committee were unanimous in wishing to do everything that could be done in order to get rid of the pain and cruelty which are inflicted at present. A considerable number of witnesses have given evidence on the subject. I do not wish to trouble the House by reading the evidence unless I am pressed, but witnesses have given evidence to the effect that if the animals are treated while they ace calves, and especially at a very young age, before they are a month old, and when the horns are beginning to bud as it is called, if their foreheads and skins are rubbed with this preparation of potash, it kills the horns altogether and prevents them from growing. Many people have told me of this privately as well. An Irish Peer, who was here the other night when the question was being discussed, said he himself had done it frequently in Ireland, and I hope my noble friend, in order to make his Bill still more complete and satisfactory than I think it is in that respect at this moment, will agree to this Amendment.
Third Schedule, page 4, line 27, leave out ("three months") and insert ("one month").—(Viscount Chaplin.)
§ EARL STANHOPE
It is quite true that all the witnesses agreed that this caustic should be applied when calves are only a few days old, but one of the best of our witnesses did say it was still possible to burn out the roots of the horns with caustic up to three months. The Committee have already cut down the time from six months to three months, and the noble Viscount now proposes to cut it down to one month. This dishorning is considered 762 a drastic thing in Scotland, and I am not sure that shortening the time would not make it appear more drastic still. I have no grave objection to the Amendment, because I have no doubt at all that the operation should be done when the calves are only a few days old, but I am not at all sure what may happen to the Amendment in another place, if your Lordships accept it now.
§ VISCOUNT CHAPLIN
I really do not think there is any fear. Although it is regarded as drastic in Scotland the President of the Scottish Chamber of Agriculture stated that their policy in future would be to induce every one to treat their calves in this way, and it ought to be done before they are a month old. Other witnesses have all given the same evidence. I do not think, under these circumstances, we need be much afraid that it will be rejected in another place.
§ On Question, Amendment agreed to.