IFAW is dedicated to ensuring that the Hunting Act 2004 is enforced across the UK so that British wildlife continues to be protected from the cruel reality of hunting with dogs.

IFAW is calling for the following changes to the Hunting Act to ensure those who illegally chase or kill foxes and other British mammals with hounds are successfully prosecuted:

  • The introduction of a recklessness clause to prevent ‘trail hunting’ from being used as a false alibi
  • The removal of the ‘observation and research’ exemption, which has been abused by stag hunts to avoid prosecution for illegal hunting
  • An increase in the penalty for illegal hunting to include custodial sentences, in line with other wildlife crime legislation

IFAW’s team of Wildlife Crime Investigators gathers film footage and other evidence to check whether hunts are abiding by the law and to help to prosecute those who are hunting illegally. These dedicated professionals include ex-police officers and others who have extensive experience monitoring and observing hunting behaviour in the field as well as expertise in investigations and prosecutions.

Our investigations, along with investigations by other interested organisations such as the RSPCA and the League against Cruel Sports, have resulted in numerous successful public and private prosecutions.

Equipped with sophisticated equipment and using highly professional surveillance methods, our Wildlife Crime Investigators brave all weathers and also threats from hunters so they can gather essential evidence in the fight against criminals who insist on flouting the law and continue to hunt illegally.

However, hunting groups’ continue to exploit loopholes in the Act to avoid prosecution. We need to strengthen the ban to make enforcement more effective. Show your support for this campaign by taking action.

Additional resources about the ban on hunting with dogs:

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