Sunday, December 4, 2011

The Issue

The current occupant of the White House recently signed a bill which will allow the horse slaughter industry to resume operation within the United States.  Make no mistake, the industry itself did not end, it merely resulted in horses being shipped to Canada and Mexico where the unseemly deed was carried out.

I've been waffling over whether to post about this issue.  As a result of my delay, Jessica over at the Spotty Horse News beat me to the punch with this post, and this one.  Both are well written, cutting to the heart of the matter. Horse slaughter does not exist because greedy people want to make a buck selling their meat to those who will eat it.  It exists, as Jessica points out, because we have allowed the breeding of too many horses.  The situation is exacerbated by current economic woes, causing good people to be faced with  terrible choices.

This is an issue over which I am torn.  While I understand why it happens, I am not in favor of the practice.  One need only look into the eyes of horse, and see the intelligence hidden behind them to know that this is a fate they do not deserve.  I would have a veterinarian euthanize my horses before I would send them to a kill pen, or worse, abandon them to face starvation.

9 comments:

Jessica said...

Thanks for the link, Dave. I would also euthanize mine before sending them to a kill pen or worse, allowing them to starve, if I could no longer care for them.

It is a hard, hard situation. I have good friends who breed nice horses and that is their business and how they make their money. But....

Smooch Smokey for me, if you do that sort of thing.

Kate said...

I euthanize mine when it is time. Horses are expensive and many people are hurting in these hard economic times - but to me, the animals must be taken care of, as well as we can. There are no easy answers to this problem.

Bag Blog said...

We've just been through one of the worst droughts in TX/OK history and we are not out of the woods yet. We grew absolutely no hay this summer. You can't imagine the price of hay here. Although we have had a bit of rain, there is no hay for the winter. We have taken on four extra horses on our property for a family that cannot afford hay. Lots of people have had to sell their horses because they cannot feed them. The sale barns are charging people a huge fee ($150.00) to sell horses and then not guaranteeing the horse will sell. You could pay 30$ for a coggins test plus a 150$ deposit plus a percentage of the sell and all of that is IF your horse sells. On a horse that you have spent lots of money on, you get nothing in return. I'm not talking about a few horses, but many. Things are bad here and I put a large part of the problem at the feet of people who banned packer houses. If you have an old horse or a sick horse, you can choose to let him die or have him put down, but some people need to get some money for their investment. It is a good choice for some. I have made both choices - Years ago I was cheated at a sale barn and bought a lame horse. We ended up selling him to a packer rather than cheating someone else, and got back a bit of our money. A few years ago, I let our old horse die of old age on our property.

Deb said...

I too have had to make that decision and believe me, it's most difficult. On the other side of it some really are better off in a can before they seriously hurt somebody.

Deb said...

This just came in to my inbox via Dad. Sad situation.

http://news.yahoo.com/texas-drought-leaves-heartbreaking-toll-abandoned-horses-181314658.html;_ylc=X3oDMTNuNTc1cXZuBF9TAzIxNDU4NjgyNzUEYWN0A21haWxfY2IEY3QDYQRpbnRsA3VzBGxhbmcDZW4tVVMEcGtnA2IwYTU1ZjQ0LWY3NzctM2U4NS05M2QzLWYyMzA4ZjZhN2QxZARzZWMDbWl0X3NoYXJlBHNsawNtYWlsBHRlc3QD;_ylv=3

Dave (aka Buckskins Rule) said...

Jessica: I'm not much of horse smoocher, but I'll give him some carrots in your name.

Kate: I feel as you do.

Lou: I understand things are rough in your neck of the woods right now, but I'll have to agree to disagree with you. If I thought the kill pens were truly humane, I might think differently. But they are not, regardless of where they are located. I find it to by just another symptom of our disposable society. The horses don't ask for this.

Deb: Sad indeed. If worse comes to worse, a bullet only costs around a quarter. At least it's quick.

Mary said...

I have heard and read a lot of debate on this in the past few days. I honestly couldn't imagine myself being in that situation where I had to make that sort of decision. I do see both sides. I've heard in Oregon it is illegal to bury a horse on your own property and the disposal fee is expensive also. Is this true?
I know myself, I could never ever send my horse to that end ever.

Cheryl Ann said...

Dave, I've left written instructions for the care of my horses should anything happen to me. My family is to continue their care and boarding. I have made sure that this will happen. They are NEVER to go to auction.

Finance said...

Good that some people are still aware of this issue :)