Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Questions of Slaughter

With the constant battle to close the slaughter houses, I feel the need to bring this controversial subject up again. Equus has a well written article in their June addition under the EQ Perspective column written by Tracy Flahardy. As much as people like to think that every sick and crippled horse ends up living happily ever after, it trully is not so. Instead of trying to close them down, why not start fund raising projects to help the ones that have a chance?
Sometimes people have no other choice because of financial or physical limitations. I stay away from auctions because I do realize that I cannot save all of them. I have 7 crippled horses here, one is a gelding that was crippled at birth. He is 4 years old now he can be ridden, but limps because of a leg that didn't grow straight. He is really fast when he runs across the pasture, some days are better then others. I have 2 foundered mares, one is 24, they eat feed that is twice the cost of my other horses. I am close to broke taking care of these horses and I am looking for a grant that my help me care for them. The vet bills come more frequent and they have to get special care for their feet so that they are comfortable. When I can see that they are not able to handle the pain anymore I will have them put down by my Vet. The question is how will I know for sure? I limp when it's cold because of arthritis in my hip, I live with it. That is how I view it with these horses. I guess when they stop eating or moving around, I will have to make that decision. What if I couldn't afford to pay the Vet? Would it be fair to just leave them out in the pasture to die on their own? I think we all would agree that that is not the answer either. If enough people come together and figure out what to do with these animals, whether it is funding rescues or setting up a fund to help people that cannot afford to humanely euthanize their horses, the slaughter houses would have a struggle to support itself. They have programs set up for people that cannot afford to spay of neuter their dog or cat. As big as the horse industry is, they should be able to set up some kind of program to help the horses that can be helped. That would only leave the horses that are dangerous or too damaged to save, for these facilities.


Callie said...

Once again, I'm glad you brought this subject up . It is a serious problem and I think the more it's discussed, the more apt we all are to start addressing possible other solutions. Well said, Jess.

Rising Rainbow said...

First I want to say when it is time for those horses, they will tell you. There is an unmistakable look in the eye of a horse that has had enough of life.

The slaughterhouse issue is a complicated one and many people are speaking totally with their hearts and not thinking out the ramifications. We humans tend to do that alot and then are so surprised by the consequences.

I think there are probably lots of ways to improve the plight of the unwanted horse. Closing the slaughter houses is not going to make things better for those horses. Those issues need to be addressed. Hopefully with more and more discussion the problems will be brought to light and solutions can be found.

Kathy C said...

I like the idea of funding care for these horses similar to the funding for spaying and neutering.

Twisted Oaks Quarter Horses said...

Thanks to both of you. So many people choose to ignore this issue because of it's controversy. If half of the money spent on closing the slaughter houses was put into a fund to help these horses, we would have a big jump on some of the problems.

Anonymous said...

First let me say I own 7 quarter horses and have owned more in the past. I take good care of my animals they are family. I can afford this. some people cannot.I beleive the saying if you can't feed them you don't need them. This is a real sticky mess, this bussines of horse slaughter.But if you are looking for funding to rescue horses how about government grants and government funding, get your congressman or woman to vote it in, right? then stop to think about how that congressman is going to implement paying for it. they will raise taxes no doubt. Have we really thought about what is going to happen to these animals? I don't think so already in my area of the country it is getting to the point where you can buy a horse at the sale for less than it cost to feed it. We already have an increase in the price of corn due to the biodesiel that we hope to supplement feul with. that will make the cost of feed go up too. As a horse owner you know how high the cost is for quality care. Do you know that the killer prices are one of the reasons that the horse prices stay up. course if you close the slaughter houses everyone could afford to buy a horse because they would be a lot cheaper. that is happening now. people who know nothing of taking care of these animals but always wanted one and couldn't afford them could get one. Then how are they going to feed them and properly care for them. Hey they could turn them out in the yard to graze and just tell the horse "stay in the yard, don't get in the street". How about the horse industry? what will happen to the horse industry. Think about it.
I am a firm beleiver in a lot of TLC, for my animals.I don't beleive in creul treatment for any animal.It just makes me mad that someone can't take care of their animals for what ever reason. But I think we need to look at the big picture This will affect more than just us owners it will affectthe people who don't own them to.
It is the ripple affect. think past the splash of the pebble. Corn prices,horses being turned out on state parks and getting hit by vacationers. Unwanted horses being disposed of inhumanely due to cost.
I hope we all think what affect this may have on down the road, plaese don't be short sighted. And remember, when you looking for goverment funding for any thing, you are looking for you and I to pay for it.
Happy trails to you all and good luck.

Callie said...

To Anonymous, This is an excellent comment. The writers of this blog do not believe that the slaughter houses should be closed. We believe that breeding should be done responsibly. The fact of the matter is now that Bo won this round so discussion continues as to what's next? I personally only own two of which I can afford. I might convince my husband to take in one more at a much later date and then that's me done. Perhaps the unwanted horses should be loaded and brought to Bo's property. If the government insists on closing these slaughter houses down then they had better come up with a solution for the effects of the ripple.

Callie said...

The Horse Industry is a multi-billion dollar industry. I am not tax exempt. I pay taxes on every horse related item I buy. Where do those taxes go to? The US government, so why can't they give it back in the form of a grant or low interest loans? They've created this problem by shutting down the slaughter houses. There needs to be an alternative to this problem created. The humane society will be over-run with unwanted horses. For instance the Barbaro people donated over a million dollars to founder research.