Do not tattoo your pony, court tells German man
A German man has been banned from tattooing a 15-centimetre Rolling Stones “tongue” logo onto his pony. He had planned to use it as an advert for a pet tattoo business.
The man had already registered his new animal tattoos firm, shaved a large area of his pony’s flank and tattooed the outline of the Stones' famous design on the animal’s skin when the court stopped any further ink work.
The Münster administrative appeals tribunal on Friday upheld a ban imposed by the Coesfeld local council, on the grounds that tattooing animals for fashion purposes violated animal cruelty laws.
The man, who was not named in the media, appealed against the ban, saying he wanted to earn money with the enterprise and use his "individually decorated" pony as an advert.
But judges punctured his business dreams, ruling that even if humans usually undergo tattooing without anaesthetic, this did not mean that animals felt no pain.
The court added that an animal's fear and inability to understand the cause of the pain, however slight, or how long it would last, had to be taken into account.
In addition, the court added, humans could interrupt the process at any time if they felt uncomfortable. The animal, on the other hand, was "subject to the will of the tattooist."
But German law still allows an animal to be tattooed for identification purposes.