Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Argentina: Mutilated Sow Report from 09.03.08

Argentina: Mutilated Sow Report from 09.03.08
By Silvia Perez Simondini

In the Abadia District, the time being 07:00, a female member of Mr. Marcelo Nievas's family went to feed the family sow, as is her custom at that time of day. The animal had last been seen in perfect condition at 18:00 hours on the previous day.

The woman could not believe her eyes: the poor animal [had been mutilated] but remained alive, missing the outer ear, although the entire auditory system could be missing. It is not possible to ascertain this at this time given the sow's aggressive state as a result of suffering from the injury produced.

These incisions are characteristic of the ones we have been seeing in mutilations since 2002: an excision of the outer ear, extraction of the eye and its socket, horseshoe-shaped incision on the face, and the inability to diagnose internal injuries to the mouth due to the suffering this inflicts to the animal. Elements of high-strangeness, common to other cases, are also present. There a seven dogs on the premises that bark at the slightest disturbance, but appear to have heard nothing in this instance. There are other sows in the pen, as well as piglets, but none of them experienced any harm.

We are trying to find a veterinarian to take over this investigation to establish a diagnosis. It is imperative to keep the animal alive, but this diagnosis would also tell us if the animal should be sacrificed to avoid further suffering. Antibiotics were administered after the event to contain infections and scar-forming medications and analgesics are being administered under the recommendation of Dr. Alberto Pariani, pathologist from the University of General Pico, Province of La Pampa. Dr. Pariani is following up on the case with Dr. Daniel Belot.

We visited the site with Pablo Puchet to conduct a survey of the area. A print was found on the ground next to the pen, having characteristics similar to the ones found in the Rosario and La Pampa cases, and sixty centimeters from the fence bordering the field.

No traces of blood were found inside the pen, nor were its structural components affected. We paid particular attention to the possibility of finding substance residue on the zinc roof, on the wooden struts or any heat alteration of the nylon that covers part of the pen, but with negative results.

A survey of the surroundings was conducted without positive results. The animal's owners were interviewed to ascertain if they detected strange animal behavior the night before or strange sounds, without positive results. The heard and saw nothing that night. Local residents were also interviewed without positive results. We will continue providing updates on this case.