After hearing too many stories about dogs being horribly injured or killed by legal traps on public lands, in the winter of 2007 a group of Montanans who enjoy hiking, fishing, hunting, skiing, boating and recreating on Montana’s public lands and waterways gathered to discuss how we could help keep those lands safe for people and their pets.
As we shared stories of encounters with trappers and traps, it became apparent how few people understand the scope of the danger trapping poses to people and their pets. We realize that with over 3,000 licensed trappers in the state each able to run an unlimited number of traps, tens of thousands of traps–steel-jawed leghold traps, body-crushing Conibear traps, and wire choke snares–lurk in drainages all across the state. Virtually all popular waterways have traps along them at some point. Traps, we came to understand, kill not only our pets, but precious and endangered wildlife.
From those gatherings and discussions rose Footloose Montana, a local non-profit organization—driven by an interest in informing Montanans about the scope and danger of trapping on public lands, funded by local individuals contributing from their own checkbooks.
You and your pets are not immune from the danger of traps. If you ski, hike, fish, hunt, kayak, raft, or just stroll along Montana’s public lands, you may run into traps—and when a companion animal is trapped, you may not be able to save it in time.
Footloose wants Montanans to know about trapping on our public lands, and we want to enlist you in our mission.
- Whenever you find a trap on public lands or waterways please contact us so that we can warn others of the need for caution in that area.
- If you have stories to tell about pets or people running afoul traps, please contact us so that others may understand just how pervasive this problem is.
- Help us spread the word by telling friends who ski, hunt, fish, hike or boat on public lands or waters about traps and about this website.