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Olympic Dressage Trainer Under Investigation for Horse Cruelty

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  • Totally agree MBM. I guess she will be required to provide receipts for feed bills or something like that.

    Lack of dental care for older horses or just plain missing teeth can cause emaciation...so she will probably need to provide some receipts regarding that.. I get a sickening feeling about some of the do-gooders who end up seemingly to be hoarders on occasion too.

    In the end, it is the owner's responsibility to do everything they can to care for their horses...sometimes though older horses can be a huge challenge for anyone. Everyone wants them to live forever, and they just don't, but they deserve every effort of care.

    Comment


    • the whole "rescue" mentality is really some kind of sickness..... nowadays folks don't buy a horse you "rescue" them.... from a bad situation, bad training, etc etc.

      this even happened to me.... I bought an OTTB literally right off the track - she had a bowed tendon which i rehabbed (including 2x day hand walking) for 3 or 4 months, then sold on to someone else.

      this person then a year or so later was selling the horse (which if course was fine) but in the ad she said something along the lines of "I rescued this horse and rehabbed her " which was total BS.

      I called her on it and she pulled her ad in a huff saying that she didnt know how else to sell the horse? WTF?

      i think whatever that mentality is is what is driving this entire story. i wonder if there is a psychological name for it?

      Comment


      • Well, I have not waded through the entire thread but at this point I would like ALL animal cruelty laws rescinded.

        I cannot remember who typed it, "keeping an old horse alive for ones own ego" hasn't been around a whole lot of oldsters or at least aware of them if she has. I have rarely seen an animal not want to live, regardless of how they look. What is wrong with a horse being thin and alive?

        Y'all condone fat until it bursts a hock or two. Y'all should be carted off for THAT!

        Whether she has her day in court of not, why should she have to defend herself HERE or anywhere else?? THis sort of crap should not be allowed.

        When it happened in Maryland I know I said it was going to be happening elsewhere. Here you have it.

        I, for one, am sick of people sticking their noses where they don't belong. If you want to take every horse that you see that you think is abused home and feed them in THIS economy, you go right ahead. If you want to let PETA kill them , no I don't think so. IF they want to buy them all and kill them, I won't like it but I wouldn't be able to stop them.

        For the rest of y'all, it is like watching an old time lynch mob at work. What is wrong with you? Hasn't education and living well, done anything for manners, respect and responsibility? (I sure would like to remove that comma)

        WHat gives you the right to throw stones at someone else on the internet? Certainly , I have seen enough of it.

        It is time to put a screeching halt to this nonsense everywhere.

        Once again, she is not sitting on her porch in her Daisy Dukes, swilling beer and using her animals for target practice!

        I don't know this woman at all. But I would tell everyone to stand down. YOU maybe next.
        “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”
        ? Albert Einstein

        Comment


        • horsefairie, i agree with you on many points, but my comment about keeping an animal alive for ego was about those who have animals suffering who go to extreme lengths to keep the animal alive.... ie: blood transfusions for a 30 year old horse, etc etc.

          i see it at the retirement facility where i board - the horse wants to die and yet the owner refuses to let it happen...... or worse, the animal is suffering and the owner will not put it down!

          these are not just old horses slowly winding down.....

          Comment


          • Yup.

            Comment


            • My favorite is: rescued horse...rehoming fee...2000K.. There is a lot of that out there too.

              Comment


              • Mbm<I agree that blood transfusions might not be MY choice, I could not afford it! But I also don't think one should dress their dog for an outing or "playdate" with other dogs! It is an option for some and as much as I don't agree with it, it isn't ANY of MY business!

                Same with how others keep their horses!

                I don't like cruelty towards people and I am much more fond of horses! However, this animal control CRAP is a staging area to hurt PEOPLE, not , NOT protect animals. No one can protect animals or women for that matter. You can bellow and boast but it cannot be done. PERIOD. Attempting to do so has created monstrous "rescues" and a wild west sort of approach to policing that NO OTHER crime affords. There are few HORSEMEN involved in this.

                It is an emotional field day and supreme time and money waster! IT can ruin lives and for what???

                PR people, make em cry and wince and get your way.
                “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.”
                ? Albert Einstein

                Comment


                • fwiw, the blood transfusions were done by a rescue after rescuing an elder (30+?) yo horse..... it was done to generate $$$$$$ and of course sympathy .
                  the $$ should of gone to help younger animals that had a future..... but no, it is good PR to save them.

                  Comment


                  • I don't know Gwen, thus have no dog in this fight. But this whole thing feels like it was about prosecuting her for a felony and taking her down rather than about concern for these two horses. Now, maybe that's what is needed - I don't know. Maybe her list of offenses that haven't been prosecuted is long and ugly. I have no idea. But it's creepy to see these self-styled "articles" about the story, and the details don't leave me with a good feeling either - moving horses that were "on the brink of death" twice between Willits and Sonoma in a couple of days doesn't seem like the needs of the horses were top of the priorities. Maybe if I had been there, I would have done the same.

                    I suspect there are a lot of horses around in that shape or worse, but they don't have high profile owners or maybe they can't be seen from the road. The emphasis (from the rescue) on "Olympic rider" strikes me as a need for publicity rather than a need for truth or justice.

                    I've seen older horses look like that that have food in front of them all the time, but still have a glint in their eye, still have a sense of humor. Often I think that they probably could be improved by having 100% senior food 24x7 ... with the natural consequence being that they'd have to be separated from their herd 24x7 which probably means a stall or pipe corral where they're no longer free to move or enjoy their buddies. It might not, in aggregate, be an improvement in quality of life. Not to mention that the expense is prohibitive for most people, especially people with more than one horse.

                    So these elder horses can fall into kind of a gray area, where they do not quite thrive on care that would be acceptable for a normal horse, but maybe would look better if they had intensive care. There are some who would say that those horses should all be euthanized and some who would say that those horses should never be euthanized. For me, I think the truth is going to vary case by case. I'd like to see them all fat and glossy, but I remember one very elderly horse who still had a sense of humor about him that I came to see as a frail, skinny 100 year old man, out on the porch in his rocking chair, making acerbic comments to the passersby. Yes I would have liked to see him carry a lot more weight, but I'm less sure than I once was that he needed to die just yet.

                    Is law enforcement really the best path for working with owners of these horses? Maybe a truckload of equine senior (etc) and a set of extra pipe panels would be more effective - if your goal is really to benefit the horses. Certainly unless the owner is just vile, I think that is the right place to start rather than with a call to the sheriff (especially since dedicated Animal Control doesn't exist here any longer).
                    If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

                    Comment


                    • I have a problem reading that a vet, the trained medical professional brought in to treat the horses, recommended euthanasia and the rescue decided to ignore that advice.

                      Rescue shouldn't be about ego feeding the humans involved ("and we were the only ones who recognized that spark in her eyes..."), it shouldn't be about bragging that they right ("see, charges HAVE been filed, and all you haters out there are poopy heads for not believing us to begin with...") and it shouldn't be filled with emotional, hyperbolic language.

                      It should be about the animals and what is best for them. This mess has always seemed to be more about the people and egos involved and less about the horses.
                      Sheilah

                      Comment


                      • If you read the complaint dated 12/14, it states at the very bottom:

                        ECR Offer: If accepts responsibility at an early stage: 17b4, 20 days - jail alts ok, $500 fine, 3 yr probation, do not own/care for any horses, restitution (ongoing) TBD, standard other terms including search and drug testing. 100 hrs volunteer work at Animal Shelter.

                        ECR means Early Case Resolution. 17b4 means downgrading a felony to a misdemeanor. If she took the ECR offer, she'd get a misdemeanor 597(b) conviction, plus possibly fine, probation (not able to own/care for horses during probation), restitution, and community service. Pretty standard fare for a misdemeanor 597b in this county.

                        It will be interesting to see if she takes the misdemeanor deal or chances a felony conviction. These cases tend to get stretched out for a long time in the courts here, even the misdemeanor ones.

                        Comment


                        • Originally posted by Watermark Farm View Post
                          If you read the complaint dated 12/14, it states at the very bottom:

                          ECR Offer: If accepts responsibility at an early stage: 17b4, 20 days - jail alts ok, $500 fine, 3 yr probation, do not own/care for any horses, restitution (ongoing) TBD, standard other terms including search and drug testing. 100 hrs volunteer work at Animal Shelter.

                          ECR means Early Case Resolution. 17b4 means downgrading a felony to a misdemeanor. If she took the ECR offer, she'd get a misdemeanor 597(b) conviction, plus possibly fine, probation (not able to own/care for horses during probation), restitution, and community service. Pretty standard fare for a misdemeanor 597b in this county.

                          It will be interesting to see if she takes the misdemeanor deal or chances a felony conviction. These cases tend to get stretched out for a long time in the courts here, even the misdemeanor ones.
                          Given that her livelihood involves caring for horses - whatever you may think of how she does that - that is a harsh sentence, likely unworkably harsh, perhaps more harsh than an actual prison term. I realize it is standard. I don't know her, but given her age and the fact that she was a professional very young, she likely has no other employment prospects.

                          Maybe she's awful and shouldn't be around horses any more - I don't know. But anything short of that outcome will mean that what money she has is going to lawyers instead of the horses, and that can't be good for anyone.

                          Two 30+ year old horses with a body score in the 1 range is not good - no question. But if other horses in her care are in good health and well cared for, it is hard for me to feel this is appropriate. Then again, maybe the other horses aren't well cared for and maybe there are other issues. I don't know.

                          And it's kind of ironic that the rescue thought the horses still had a spark in their eyes and didn't want to euthanize them, despite veterinary advice. If only Gwen had done so last year, she wouldn't be in this mess.
                          If you are allergic to a thing, it is best not to put that thing in your mouth, particularly if the thing is cats. - Lemony Snicket

                          Comment


                          • Wasn't she due in court today?
                            I wasn't always a Smurf
                            Penmerryl's Sophie RIDSH
                            "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
                            The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.

                            Comment


                            • i wonder what this case will do for elder horse care givers? if they wont take really old ones or start asking for the oldest/thinnest ones to be taken away or put down?

                              seriously - if someone had a grudge out (as appears in this case) they could ruin a persons business quite easily.... Just as it looks like Gwen will loose hers.

                              A smart business owner would no longer take in elder thin horses. it is too dangerous.....

                              Comment


                              • People, please get your facts straight.

                                1) the horses were NOT in their 30's.
                                2) Gwen has been know for years as being really hard on horses, has had a substance abuse history, and unreliability, as in not even showing up for teaching.
                                3) She dumped the horses on someone in the middle of the night, and the donees were the ones that called the authorities, when they found starved horses, in the morning.
                                Gwen may have been an excellent horsewoman, 30 or 40 years ago, but she's been her own worst enemy, noone has "done" anything to her. She managed to ruin her life on her own.

                                Today's newspaper article is here: http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article...th-horse-abuse

                                Taking in older horses has nothing to do with this issue. It's only when you starve them and deprive them of care that you get in trouble.

                                Comment


                                • Does anyone know what happened in court yesterday? On the DA's website, it has an upcoming court date of Jan. 5, with purpose of "Demurrer." What does that mean?

                                  http://da.sonoma-county.org/victim_w...235&cci=550158

                                  Comment


                                  • Oooof

                                    I tried reading the Wiki on "Demurrer"

                                    now I need someone to translate the translation

                                    _\\]
                                    -- * > hoopoe
                                    Procrastinate NOW
                                    Introverted Since 1957

                                    Comment


                                    • I rode with Gwen a long time ago and really liked her. I actually recommended her to someone recently (a year or two ago). I am on the East Coast and Gwen was/is on the West Coast, so I didn't have intimate knowledge of her situation over the years as others who live there would have.

                                      However, I know that things can change over time and not always for the good.

                                      I am very sorry to hear that things have maybe not gone too well .

                                      Comment


                                      • demurrer..

                                        I'm not a lawyer...

                                        But appears to mean, appears guilty on surface, but plans to present new evidence to the contrary. Maybe extenuating circumstances, etc.
                                        " iCOTH " window/bumper stickers. Wood Routed Stall and Farm Signs
                                        http://www.bluemooncustomsigns.com

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                                        • http://dictionary.law.com/Default.aspx?selected=487

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