150 cattle have been removed from a farm in Borgarfjörður by the authorities on November 14 and 15. After repeated demands by authorities that their owner improve their conditions, authorities have finally been forced to confiscate the cattle after it became clear the farmer in question would not cooperate.
Both police officers and representatives from MAST, the Icelandic Food and Veterinary Authority, were at the scene, reports RÚV.
The owner in question is said to have a long history of mistreating his animals. Sheep and horses have been previously taken from the farmer to be slaughtered, as they were too maltreated to be rescued.
Some cattle confiscated in the latest episode will likewise be slaughtered, but many of the cows will be allowed to live and given new homes.
Ellen Ruth Ingimundsdóttir, district veterinarian for Southwest Iceland, stated that such cases are very difficult for all involved: “It’s a long and difficult story. We decided that it was no longer possible to give deadlines that weren’t met […] We don’t take animals from people just because we want to. We need to follow the law and we need to do this in consultation with locals so that it doesn’t hurt the animals. That’s why it has also taken a long time.”
Ellen additionally thanked those farmers who will be receiving the remaining cows, which are headed to barns with better pasture and conditions.