These five “authentic pigeons” are the strains of torture

Since January 2022, there has been a new regulation for the protection of dogs, according to which it is forbidden to display dogs with the characteristics of tormenting breeding. This is welcome, but very few people know that other animal species are also affected by torture – alleged pets included.

The form of domesticated pigeons is also a victim of torture. On the other hand, the so-called homing pigeons are bred, which are used in races. Many of these animals can no longer find their way home and die on flights or become stranded in cities where they live miserable lives. In addition, pigeons are also bred specifically according to some visual ideas. Like dogs and cats that are raised by torture, they suffer from the traits of torture breeding throughout their lives.

Why breed breeds torture pigeons?

When raising animals, people focus on certain characteristics, such as the appearance of the animals. In agriculture, animals are also bred to perform a certain “performance”. Through the targeted mating of animals with the desired characteristics, the genes are modified according to human desires. However, breeding traits that deviate from the normal body shape to which animals adapt to nature has negative effects. Animals are usually more susceptible to genetic diseases and suffer from lifelong tormenting breeding traits.

Beautiful, beautiful, torment breeding! The so-called “purebred pigeons” are bred according to human ideals – the breeders know no boundaries. However, due to the change in their appearance, the animals are not viable in nature and are also tightly confined to the cage – a proper life of the species is impossible.

For “successful” breeding, only the best animals are mated with each other. If pigeons do not meet the expectations of breeders, they are often killed. Sometimes they are also abandoned, which is also a death sentence, because animals are not able to survive in nature due to the characteristics of torture breeding.

The following five “descent pigeons” are torture strains

The following “pigeon pedigree” can often be found in pigeon breeding shows. For such events, the “most beautiful” – and therefore also the most suffering – “breeds of pigeons” are selected.

seagulls

The seagull pigeon is distinguished by its short beak. In this animal, the beak was bred to be noticeably shorter compared to other “pigeon breeds”. Even for pigeon chicks still in the egg, this tormented breeding feature presents a major problem: due to the short beak, young pigeons have only a deformed egg tooth or, in the worst case, no egg teeth at all. However, they need this to open the eggshell from the inside and hatch. Without the help of breeders at hatching, many pigeon chicks die in the egg. [1] Breeding is also a challenge for parents, which they are usually unable to cope with due to their short beaks. The breeders then use the so-called nurse pigeons, which raise the young pigeons.

But not only the age of the egg leads to a significant weakening of this “breed”. Beak deformations also occur frequently, which severely hinder pigeons in their daily life, for example when it comes to eating or drinking water or caring for their feathers. Life without suffering would never be possible for these “authentic pigeons”. [2]

the carrier pigeon

The so-called homing pigeon has a larger crop than its peers, which also changes the physiology of the organ. As a result, there is an increase in inflammation of the goiter wall, which is caused by faulty fermentation, putrefaction and acidification of the contents of the goiter. Pigeons need regular veterinary care and visibly suffer from the effects of tormenting rearing. [3] This symptom is particularly problematic for male pigeons, because regular blowing of the crop, for example during courtship behaviour, causes the connective tissue to increasingly sag, which can lead to crop widening and consequently to hanging crops. [4]

pigeon drum (feet feathers)

In the feathered “thoroughbred pigeon” one distinguishes the various characteristics of this characteristic. The light feathers on the scaly, but not usually feathered, feet of pigeons are referred to as ‘socking’. The feet of pigeons here are covered only with short feathers. The strong expression of the spring foot is referred to as “sliding formation”. The stronger the feathers on the feet, the more obvious the obstruction of pigeons in everyday life: even normal walking is difficult for them. They are more sensitive to the weather and therefore cannot survive in nature. They are also more likely to spread parasites. And even their offspring are endangered by the feathers on their feet: young pigeons can get stuck in the feathers when leaving the nest and be carried from the nest, which usually means their death. Without human help, pigeons cannot raise their offspring. [5] To counteract the problem, the foot feathers are shortened during the breeding season, which increases the risk of infection and can lead to bleeding.

Due to the torment of breeding, trumpeter pigeons cannot comply with their normal behavior such as flying and running. They noticeably suffer from the innate features of the feathered stem. [6]

Change in feather color

Regarding the breeding adjustment of feather color in the so-called show pigeons, there are various variants and colors that are considered to be torture breeding. Possibly the deadliest cause of pigeon plumage is a defective gene, which usually results in the chick’s death before it hatches into the egg. The genetic factor for this is referred to as ‘dominant chalcedony’ and results in white wing bars as well as lightening of the entire plumage and fading of the tail and wing feathers. Pigeons that have inherited this gene from both parents rarely survive and only in exceptional cases reach sexual maturity.

Another fatal discoloration of feathers is commonly referred to as the “almond factor.” The consequences here are visual disturbances, death of young pigeons before hatching, as well as movement and orientation disturbances. A normal and proper life of the species is not possible for pigeons, because this genetic factor has a great influence on the health and well-being of animals, and therefore means a life full of suffering. [7]

Behavioral disorders education

An example of an inborn behavioral disorder is the neck trembling of pigeons. The pigeon shakes its neck and head back and forth. This atypical behavior is called shivering, and it is required in these “pure pigeons” and required in breeding. Affected animals move rigidly and slowly compared to their species. Changing posture and resulting balance disturbances are common findings. [8] Pigeons cannot control the behavior that breeders manipulate and can put them in dangerous situations. So-called terrestrial acrobats, for example, cannot escape and fly away when they are anxious, but they move several times in a row. A genetic metabolic disorder is responsible for this abnormal behavior. [9]

what you can do

  • Never buy pigeons from breeders or pet stores. It is not about the welfare of the animals, it is only about the profit that can be made from the “good” animal. Pigeons are mass-produced and resold with no regard for their luxury.
  • Abandoned pigeons are found over and over again and given to an animal shelter or to help pigeons. If you can and would like to take a bathroom, please contact your local animal shelter or bathroom assistant. Supporting the breeding and care of injured and sick animals and providing a home for homeless animals.

Please also sign our demand for the Pet Protection Act, whereby we support a ban on keeping pets – because this is the only way to end animal suffering.

  • Sources

    [1] Blang, Diana-Queen, Specific Breeding Evidence Network: Specific Breeding in Pigeons:

    [2] Animal Welfare and Pet Breeding Expert Group – Federal Chamber of Veterinarians: Opinion on Interpreting Section 11B of the Animal Welfare (Prohibition of Breeding Torture) Act

    [3] Animal Welfare and Pet Breeding Expert Group – Federal Chamber of Veterinarians: Opinion on Interpreting Section 11B of the Animal Welfare (Prohibition of Breeding Torture) Act

    [4] Blang, Diana-Queen, Specific Breeding Evidence Network: Specific Breeding in Pigeons:

    [5] Animal Welfare and Pet Breeding Expert Group – Federal Chamber of Veterinarians: Opinion on Interpreting Section 11B of the Animal Welfare (Prohibition of Breeding Torture) Act

    [6] Blang, Diana-Queen, Specific Breeding Evidence Network: Specific Breeding in Pigeons:

    [7] Blang, Diana-Queen, Specific Breeding Evidence Network: Specific Breeding in Pigeons:

    [8] Animal Welfare and Pet Breeding Expert Group – Federal Chamber of Veterinarians: Opinion on Interpreting Section 11B of the Animal Welfare (Prohibition of Breeding Torture) Act

    [9] Blang, Diana-Queen, Specific Breeding Evidence Network: Specific Breeding in Pigeons:

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