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  1. #1
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    Dec. 1, 1999
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    Default Little Cliff rescued from slaughter

    Another killer of threads



  2. #2
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    Default title failed but there is a story

    I tried twice to transfer this story, but it is there. If someone more talented than I can find it on title page of Thoroughbred Times today? thanks
    Another killer of threads



  3. #3
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    Sep. 6, 2003
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    WA, Land of the damp Thongpend
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  4. #4
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    Default

    I hope "La Buzz Stable" and Roman Preciado are proud their name is associated with people who don't care about their horses.



  5. #5
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    Oct. 8, 2002
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    Default

    you know, I'd been reading about this earlier (and followed a bit when it was all "going down") and only just realized I saw this guy in the Sir Barton.

    I even have a picture, because I thought he was so gorgeous.
    "smile a lot can let us ride happy,it is good thing"

    My CANTER blog.



  6. #6
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    Jul. 2, 1999
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    Default

    I remember him too! The upside is that he has been saved.

    Such a shame that a horse with connections to Nick and Kim Zito, who have been very strong advocates for responsibility would end up there.

    They've both worked hard to find post racing careers for horses - example with Straight Gin now doing point to point - and putting up their own money to give back to those horses.



  7. #7
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    Apr. 4, 2007
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    Default

    From the article:

    "Although Little Cliff had changed owners four times throughout his life before being rescued, one thing that followed him from Kentucky to New York to Florida to Pennsylvania were his Jockey Club papers, papers that Kim Zito had affixed with a white sticker that says, “If this horse needs a home when he retires, please call.”"


    I guess the creeps who owned him didn't think he was worth a phone call.
    I hope there's a special place in hell for people like this.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul. 14, 2004
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    Virginia. We Do Ponies!
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DickHertz
    I hope "La Buzz Stable" and Roman Preciado are proud their name is associated with people who don't care about their horses.
    So, are one of these the ones that actually sent him there?
    Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver, Equine Insurance Specialist



  9. #9
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    Default thanks for the correction..

    What I got from the article is that BECAUSE of the sticker, eventually SOMEONE had the sense to contact the Zitos. So it has a good ending. so, alls well that ends well...
    Another killer of threads



  10. #10
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    Jul. 28, 2004
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    Default

    For clarification purposes:

    No, the horses papers were not with him so it's unclear if the trainer ever knew/saw the sticker was attached (though it's been reported he's the type of trainer that could give a rats patootie about his horses/this wasn't the first). He was picked up off the backside and toted off (by a dealer) to the direct to slaughter pen, and that's where Christy (AC4H) spotted him.

    He was identified by his tattoo by me, and you can bet it was done so to be perfectly clear the horse is who he is (we would never want to in-correctly id a horse/I'm a stickler about it!). Tattoo was clear and all his markings (white/whorls/swirls) matched- 100% ID on this horse.

    As soon as we had his ID- we began to backtrack, which really isn't that difficult to do. The Zito's were horrified and immediately stepped up along with LaPenta, another former connection. He will be traveling down to KY and will retire with the Zito's. He's presently recovering from Strangles and doing well. Diana (mentioned in the story) and I volunteer our time and tend to the TB's for Christy/AC4H. We also offer our assistance to other rescues as well when it comes to TB's.



  11. #11
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    Jan. 31, 2006
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    Default

    What a great ending!

    Makes me even more of a fan of Nick and Kim.



  12. #12
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    Apr. 14, 2006
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    Virginia
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    Default

    While we don't know if Preciado looked at Little Cliff's papers, we do know that he signed them out the day that the backstretch buyer picked the horse up at Philadelphia Park. We made lots of phone calls to find out exactly when Cliff left the track and with whom.

    Kim, Nick and Bob LaPenta have been wonderful to work with and really want this story to be spread far and wide. It is their hope, and ours, that this will help raise awareness of just how vigilant people must be in keeping track of horses they want to protect when the horses change hands. When horses I want to take in when they are finished racing are claimed or sold, I call the new trainers or owners every month or so to remind them that the horse is on my radar screen and that I will offer it a home or help place it, no matter what shape it is in. No questions asked. I just want to make sure that the horse is safe. It has worked, except with horses that ended up with Dale Baird. They all went to slaughter. But for almost every other horse, I was able to provide a safety net of one sort or another.

    Thankfully, Little Cliff is safe and will always be cared for now. The shock and sadness in Kim Zito's voice the day I called her almost made me cry. Then she was angry that Ramon Preciado didn't care enough to pick up the phone and try to find the horse a better place to go than the direct to slaughter pen. Even if he didn't see the sticker, there's no excuse for not trying. I guess he wanted to money from the dealer more than he wanted to protect the horse. He's apparently one of this guy's steady customer's. The dealer spilled his guts.



  13. #13
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    Default

    Wow.

    Randee Beckman ~Otteridge Farm, LLC (http://on.fb.me/1iJEqvR)~ Marketing Manager - The Clothes Horse & Jennifer Oliver, Equine Insurance Specialist



  14. #14
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    Jul. 2, 1999
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by rigoletto View Post
    While we don't know if Preciado looked at Little Cliff's papers ....
    I have to be dead honest this is a well known fact: with ANY horse Nick Zito once trained who has fallen to that point where the horse's next destination is for slaughter, you can call him and the horse will be acquired and properly retired. Period. (The same goes for any Marylou Whitney bred/owned horse)

    Little Cliff is a well known name and I don't care how many drinks someone could have - you'd link that horse back to Nick just as you would The Cliffs Edge. So I cut the last guy in the line zero slack for not doing the right thing.

    I'm not saying this horse was more deserving of likely a dozen other horses [at the same sale] who just unfortunately were not at one time trained by Nick Zito, but rather just what if devoted people weren't there to catch him? Since the time the Zitos had any control in his life he was guaranteed a proper retirement. That should've been respected.

    I only wish some part of the racing organizations could view this as an infraction and fine or ban said person from racing. Maybe then the bottom feeders would be put on notice.



  15. #15
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    Jan. 19, 2005
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glimmerglass View Post
    I only wish some part of the racing organizations could view this as an infraction and fine or ban said person from racing. Maybe then the bottom feeders would be put on notice.
    would be nice. Glad this story had a happy ending.

    I must say...Little Cliff is a good looking athlete...even if he didn't have a retirement spot already for him, there is absolutely no reason a horse with that sort of class should have ended up in the kill pen. He would have been pretty easy to rehome....not that any horse belongs in the kill pen.
    ** The difference between genius and stupidity is genius has its limits. -- Albert Einstein **



  16. #16
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    Apr. 14, 2006
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    Virginia
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    Quote Originally Posted by Glimmerglass View Post
    I have to be dead honest this is a well known fact: with ANY horse Nick Zito once trained who has fallen to that point where the horse's next destination is for slaughter, you can call him and the horse will be acquired and properly retired. Period.
    You'd think so, wouldn't you? As I've said before, many trainers at the lower level (bottom feeders is the perfect term for them) don't give a damn about the horses when they're finished with them. They'd rather have the couple hundred bucks the dealers give them than get the horse a home. The guy who did this should be penalized in some way but he won't. Makes me nuts.

    There's a guy at Charlestown, one of the top trainers - who also breeds and is on the board of the WV Thoroughbred Breeders Association who has a dealer who comes to his barn on a regular basis. Pays him top dollar for his cast offs. When he was confronted about a horse we pulled from the direct to slaughter pen a few months back (drop dead gorgeous, 100% sound mare) he said that it was easier to let the backstretch buyer make the horses disappear than to try to find them homes. He also mentioned the $275 he is paid for each horse. Wonder if he reports the income? He made a big fuss because the mare that was "supposed to be dead" was alive and people were asking questions. Nice.

    Little Cliff's story will hopefully serve as an eyeopener for a lot of people in the industry. Maybe they'll sit up and pay closer attention. I know that those of us who were involved in the rescue are just happy that this lovely horse is alive. I'm also left wondering who we missed. Who was left standing in that kill pen when we took Little Cliff out? And who is left behind every other time we manage to rescue a few?



  17. #17
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    Jun. 30, 2006
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    Default

    It is truly disgusting and frustrating when these type of stories surface. I'm glad Little Cliff is safe and sound.

    Situations like this one make me want to campaign for mandatory micro-chipping upon registration more and more. I still find micro-chipping a bit creepy... But if every horse who gets off the truck at a kill pen or slaughterhouse could pass under a scanner, we could easily track every TB who ends up there.

    Then, some sort of disciplinary action would be feasible if so desired by the racing jurisdictions. Even if they just published the data annually, hopefully the public stigma would be enough to dissuade the bottom feeders from taking the easy way out.

    Of course, the real asshats would probably just dig the micro-chips out beforehand, so who am I kidding...
    Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO



  18. #18
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    Sep. 17, 2006
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    Default

    This is completley disturbing, aside from the obvious, that there was that sticker on the papers.



  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by rigoletto View Post
    You'd think so, wouldn't you? As I've said before, many trainers at the lower level (bottom feeders is the perfect term for them) don't give a damn about the horses when they're finished with them. They'd rather have the couple hundred bucks the dealers give them than get the horse a home.
    Be careful about your characterization. Most of the people I know at Penn National are strong advocates of saving horses from slaughter. Your view is a bit ethnocentric and it's a little bit of a broad generalization. After all, Philadelphia Park
    isn't exactly a bottom feeder track. Most trainers there get $50 a day and do OK. Your characterization that just because you are at a cheap track means you are a butcher just isn't fair.



  20. #20
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    Jul. 10, 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by DickHertz View Post
    Be careful about your characterization. Most of the people I know at Penn National are strong advocates of saving horses from slaughter. Your view is a bit ethnocentric and it's a little bit of a broad generalization. After all, Philadelphia Park
    isn't exactly a bottom feeder track. Most trainers there get $50 a day and do OK. Your characterization that just because you are at a cheap track means you are a butcher just isn't fair.
    I agree DickHertz. While I've seen many nice horses sell for slaughter, I've also seen trainers from Penn Nat work weeks in advance to meet individuals at New Holland so they can sell their horses to safe homes. I've also seen dealers work the crowd at NH to get horses sold to private owners, paying to get them in NH but not sending them through the ring. And I've seen the same dealers hold injured tbs on their trailers and make arrangements with one rescue or another to buy those horses because if they're sent through the ring, they have no chance of making it to a private home. Keeping things positive has paid off for the horses, in my opinion, and is the best way to move forward. It ceretainly beats having horses sold for slaughter in the parking lot or taken straight to Mel's stable to avoid negative publicity.
    Last edited by SEPowell; Apr. 17, 2008 at 07:20 PM.



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