Animal right’s group PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) have called out the Duke of Cambridge for taking his son George on the shoot near Balmoral Castle.
Prince William, 38, took his son, seven, along to the hunt while on a family holiday in Scotland last weekend, where he watched his father and other senior royals spend the morning killing birds in Corgarff, a short drive from Balmoral.
George looked to be in absolute delight from the shoot, however, activists have said it is ‘immoral.’
PETA said taking a child as young as seven to this shoot could cause ‘damage to their psyche’ and could ‘desensitise George to the suffering of animals’.
PETA Director Mimi Bekhechi said: ‘Very few people these days view shooting for “sport” as anything other than a violent perversion that hurts and kills beautiful birds who are minding their own business.
‘For a child to be compelled to witness such casual killing – and by a parent he looks up to, no less – is potentially as harmful to his or her psyche as it is to the bird’s very life.
‘It can desensitise children to the suffering of animals – which is cause for concern, given the well-established link between cruelty to animals in childhood and antisocial behaviour in adulthood – and could give George nightmares.
‘To help him grow into a responsible, compassionate leader, his parents must teach him respect for all living beings.’
The Duke and Duchess Kate and son were in Scotland visiting the Queen of England, along with other members of the family.
The grouse-shooting season extends from August 12 – the ‘Glorious Twelfth’ – to December 10.
The Royal Family has a long tradition of bloodsports, although the Queen has taken steps in recent years to prevent them from being photographed doing it.
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