Spain: Inspection of Cattle Market in Santiago – Many Cows in Shocking Condition

Cattle Market Santiago, Spain

After six months, we are back at the cattle market in Santiago de Compostela together with ANDA. The director of the market is pleased with our visit - the livestock owners and traders less so. Once again, we find many cows in a shocking condition.

At the back of the market are many older cows that shouldn't even be here. They are lame and emaciated - the veterinarians should not actually approve such transports. The owners hope to earn a few euros from selling the animals after they have given milk for years and have now been sorted out. Santiago de Compostela, for many people the last stop on their pilgrimage on the Way of St. James, is unfortunately not a place of pilgrimage for the cows, but their last stop before the slaughterhouse.

Many cows slip while being driven onto the transporters because the sawdust-covered floor is too slippery - a situation that we have been complaining about to the responsible authorities for years. In addition, the owners drive the animals too hectically, hit them with sticks - including in the face - and other people stand in the way, leading to chaotic scenes time and again. A cow tries to jump over a barrier and gets stuck on it.

There are many other sad sights: the cow Clara sitting in the "dog position", the cow Maya with her protruding eyes (presumably with a visual defect) and three cows crammed so close together that the cow Alicia is literally sitting on another cow and then urinating on her too.

The trade and transportation of animals that are already sick and therefore all the more vulnerable must not be tacitly allowed. We will report the findings to the relevant authorities and press again to stop the transportation and trade in them.