§ Sir Kenneth Lewis
asked the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he will bring forward proposals to provide statutory protection against ill-treatment for horses and ponies by bringing them within the classification of agricultural animals.
§ Mrs. Fenner
I have no plans to bring forward such proposals as I believe that horses and ponies are adequately protected by existing legislation. Horses and ponies on agricultural land, are protected by the Agriculture (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 1968, which makes it an offence to cause agricultural livestock unnecessary pain or unnecessary distress. More generally, all horses and ponies are covered by the Protection of Animals Act 1911 which is the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Home Affairs.