Most people are familiar with the use of worms or plastic ornaments as bait, but for fisherman who hunt sharks on an island called Réunion, stray dogs and cats – dead or alive – will do.
The small island is overrun by stray dogs and cats –upwards of 150,000 of them are said to roam the premises.
But, instead of trying to find their owners or notify the humane society, residents have teamed up with fisherman to provide the animals as bait for capturing sharks and whales.
Animal rights group, ‘The 30 Million Friends Foundation’, was informed of the inhumane practice and sent a film crew over to the island to obtain proof to be aired on the group’s television show.
What the organisation found was absolutely shocking: dogs with huge fishing hooks sunk deep into their snouts and cats with similar hooks protruding from their paws.
According to the Foundation’s president, locals view dogs and cats not as pets and loyal companions but “…As vermin. There is no value to the life of a dog there…”
Not only are strays being targeted, but dogs who escape from their owners homes and wander the streets are also falling victim to the harrowing practice.
A veterinarian on the French-controlled island was shocked when a six-month-old dog, who escaped from a fishing net, was brought in with a huge fishing hook protruding from its face.
Unlike most of the other strays, the dog was someone’s pet, and is currently at home with its owners.
But, for one dog who is saved, countless others suffer at the hands of malicious fisherman and apathetic residents.
And you thought that sharks were the predators eh?