On Thursday 10th September, we delivered a barren rabbit cage to The Natural History Museum in London, to represent the fact that cages have no place in livestock farming.
On handing the cage over to the museum, Alex Jackson, our Head of European Campaigns said: “This is 2015. Cages are a relic, a thing of the past and should be consigned to the history books. We do not live in the dark ages. It is high time we evolved past such cruelty and put a stop to the, frankly, medieval practice of keeping farm animals behind bars.
“Cages should belong in history and we thought that nowhere better symbolises that than a museum.”
330 million rabbits kept in cages
The small, barren, wire cage we presented to the museum, once housed farmed rabbits. While this particular cage is no longer in use, more than 330 million rabbits are still kept in cages, in horrific conditions across Europe.
In our 2014 investigation we documented the appalling suffering that rabbits confined in tiny, wire cages experience thought the EU.
Our investigator said of the conditions: “It was wall-to-wall wire, barren cages that offered the tiniest of spaces for rabbits to shuffle position.”
Factory farmed rabbits spend their entire lives in battery cages: they are born in a cage and remain caged until slaughter approximately 80 days later. Breeding does, female rabbits, are often kept in solitary confinement for two years.
Not just rabbits
The range of animals that are farmed in a form of cage in the EU is wider than many might think. Not only rabbits, but hens (in ‘enriched cages’), pigs (in sow stalls), ducks and quail are all farmed in cages.
Cages confine and restrict animals, preventing many natural instinctive behaviours but despite the obvious failings of this outdated technology, in Europe, around 700 million farm animals are confined in cages every year.
End the Cage Age throughout Europe
Whist we were in London, presenting our cage to The Natural History Museum, Compassion teams across Europe were raising awareness of our End the Cage Age campaign, by delivering cages to a host of museums in five other major cities:
- Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam
- Musée du Louvre in Paris
- Muzeum Narodowe in Warsaw
- Museo della Tortura in Lucca
- Národního zemědělského muzea in Prague
In addition, our friends at Albert Schweitzer took the cage to the Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin.
This European-wide event proved hugely successful in promoting of our campaign across the continent. However, there is still more to do in order to End the Cage Age once and for all.
Sign our petition to make farming rabbits in cages illegal.
Join our End the Cage Age campaign to end cages in farming.