Friday, September 12, 2008

Quit Horsing Around On Horse Slaughter and Transport

I found this article so important that I had to reprint it here on my blog. It is Michael Markarian's item from his Humane Society Legislative blog.

Eleven lucky horses who had been abandoned last week on a rural road near Molalla, Ore., got a new lease on life yesterday. Authorities still don’t know who discarded the malnourished horses, and the owner might not come forward since he or she could face criminal charges of animal neglect.

But five of the horses were rescued yesterday morning by The Humane Society of the United States and taken to its Duchess Sanctuary in Douglas County, Ore., where they will remain until they regain their health. Once these five horses are rehabilitated, they will be put up for adoption; the six other horses were already adopted by new families yesterday. We are grateful to the Oregon Department of Agriculture for making sure that all these horses went to good homes, not to “killer buyers” for the slaughter industry.

It’s not only a happy ending for these horses, but also a double-fisted rebuke to the horse slaughter crowd. First, it is self-incriminating. The proponents of horse slaughter invoke abandonment cases like this one to support their position, almost associating themselves with people who would dump horses in the middle of the road to starve to death. They fail to hold people on their side of the fence to an ethic of personal responsibility, and that is a gross failure on their part. Second, these horses did find a safe place, largely because good people stood tall. Individuals and rescue groups provided a safety net, in spite of the arguments by slaughter proponents that there are no outlets for "unwanted horses."

Yesterday on Capitol Hill, in fact, the House Judiciary Committee considered H.R. 6598, the Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act, which would make it a crime to sell or transport horses across state or national borders for the purpose of slaughter. I wrote about this legislation when it was introduced in July, and included testimonials of horse rescuers who try to adopt horses or purchase them at auctions, only to be outbid by the killer buyers who can make a buck by selling horse flesh to French and Belgian gourmands. Tell your member of Congress to pass the legislation swiftly before adjourning this year, and make sure not another day goes by when American horses are trucked hundreds of miles to Mexican abattoirs to meet a grim and painful end.

Also this week, Congressman Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) joined animal advocates at Shadowbrook Farm in Mettawa, Ill., calling for a national ban on the use of deadly double-decker trailers for the transportation of horses. These stacked trucks are designed for livestock species such as cattle and pigs—not horses who have longer necks and are forced to stoop in the cramped quarters, often causing severe injuries. Kirk has introduced H.R. 6278, the Horse Transportation Safety Act, to prohibit the interstate transportation of horses in a motor vehicle containing two or more levels stacked on top of one another.
The legislation came on the heels of a grisly accident last fall in Wadsworth, Ill., in which a double-decker cattle truck carrying 59 Belgian draft horses overturned when the driver ran a red light and hit another vehicle. Residents could hear the animals kicking and screaming, panicked by their inability to escape. Nineteen of the horses either died on the scene or had to be euthanized later.
We have a video interview with a volunteer who was on the scene of the deadly crash and who spoke out against cruel transport. Watch the video here, and let it be a reminder that we must fight even harder to protect horses from harm—stopping inhumane and dangerous transport, and ending the cruel slaughter of American horses for food exports
I felt this information to be so important to share. I will return to Pet of the Week, next Friday.
Please do all that you can to support HR6598. The horses thank you.


horse rescue said...

Although there are many horse rescue agencies, the fact is that they do not initiate to meet the needs of the huge number of unwanted horses. Because of the excessive amounts of breeding 93% of the 100,000 horses being slaughtered every year are perfectly healthy, but the truth is the United States is over populated with Equine animals.

Jo Deibel said...

Thank you for posting this story!

I am always amazed at the callousness of people and the way in which animals are treated.

Please keep up the great work of keeping us informed!

Jo Deibel
Angel Acres Horse Haven Rescue

lj (%) said...

I'm a horsewoman with near 40 years in the horse racing industry. A retired jockey, I've made a very good living for a good many years which was provided me by the wonderful horses that I dearly do love with all that I am.

I'm someone who owes every real happiness I've ever known in this life to the horses! What a betrayal it truly is to send even one horse to a slaughter house.

I've seen these death houses up close and it's not anything close to humane euthanasia! And I don't care how many Vets from the AVMA say it is! I've heard the horses screaming, I've seen them terrorized, I've smelled those rivers of blood! It's barbaric, and that's even understated!!

Owners need to step up, and take responsibility for the horses they breed in this industry. If you can't afford to have a Vet come out and humanely euthanize by lethal injection, then you shouldn't ever own a horse! They weren't put here for our abuses! We haven't the right to send these creatures to a horrible death after years of service to us!

Please take responsibility for your own messes! If you don't want them, and can't find them forever homes, then be kind and call a Vet to humanely put the horse down. It'll cost about a month's board for Vet and disposal service. There aren't unwanted horses, only irresponsible people! Wake up ya'll Slaughter is wrong, it's pure evil! You should know this already! Slaughter should have never been an option in this country. We don't eat horses in the U.S.A.!! Let this horror end!!


Shelley said...

Thank you for posting this story. It is important that the word is spread far and wide. So many good people have no idea that horse slaughter exists. And many more don't realize that it is NOT humane euthanasia. They also don't know anything about how these horses are transported.

People must take their heads out of the sand and face the ugly truth. Only then will we end this horror.

Shelley Abrams
Americans Against Horse Slaughter

Vicki said...

It i so important to get the word out as to how these horses are treated. Seems that no matter what laws are passed, someone finds a way around it. We have to get this stopped.