In a first for the British royal family, the press reported that Prince Harry would not be participating in the traditional Christmas hunt with the rest of his family, to not 'upset'his fiancee, actress Meghan Markle, who is heavily involved in animal welfare.
Prince Harry has never missed the hunt, which takes place every Boxing Day, before this year, having taken part for the first time when he was 12 years old. The royal family usually shoot pheasants, partridges and occasionally ducks on their 8000 hectare estate in Norfolk.[caption id="attachment_44689" align="alignnone" width="634"]
Prince Harry (left) during a previous Boxing Day hunt. Source: Albanpix.com[/caption]The Sun, a British tabloid, said that this news came from a source close to the royal family at Buckingham Palace:
Harry loves [hunting] and has always been out there on Boxing Day. But if it means breaking with long-standing royal traditions to avoid upsetting [Meghan], so be it. It’s fair to say that there are some pretty stunned faces around here.
Unlike Prince Harry, Princes William and Charles did participate in the hunt on Tuesday.[caption id="attachment_44688" align="alignnone" width="565"]
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle during an interview. Source: The Sun[/caption]
Prince Harry has hunted for fun for many years, going on a boar hunt as recently as the beginning of December, while Miss Markle was filming in Canada.Many hope that this break with tradition shows signs of a less brutal era for the royals, who are often seen as traditional and conservative by younger British people.[caption id="" align="alignnone" width="634"]
Prince Harry aged 20 during a hunt in South Africa in 2004. Source: Sipa / Rex[/caption]
Meghan Markle has never been quiet about her love for animals, particularly her two rescue dogs, Guy and Bogart, who she often shares photos of on her Instagram account. She has also regularly campaigned for animal rights in the past and disagrees with hunting for sport.
A post shared by Meghan Markle (@meghanmarkle) on Oct 30, 2016 at 3:36pm PDT
A post shared by Meghan Markle (@meghanmarkle) on Jul 29, 2016 at 1:58pm PDT
Although hunting with dogs (who were then allowed to kill the animal) was outlawed in the UK in 2004, thousands of animals are still killed through organized hunts every year in the country.Animals deserve better than to die violently for 'fun'. Speak out against hunting when you can.
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