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Talking about death

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  • #41
    Originally posted by fordtraktor View Post
    We all have an interest in reducing fatalities in eventing.

    Whether you want to believe it or not, bad press for eventing negatively affects all horse sports. I don't know how many times I have heard about those NYT articles last year from people questioning my sanity for riding horses.

    People don't know the difference between the different sports, but they do get worked up over people and animals dying. If we want any horse sports to get mainstream support, we have to do whatever we can to reinforce that equestrian community as a whole is doing what it can to provide entertainment, safety and humane practices at the same time, across the sport.

    Fact of life. If you don't like us "interfering," start eventing cows.
    Well, finally, a glimmer of intelligence. I couldn't agree more, except for the cows. I do not recall seeing any other disciplines at the Eventing Safety Summit last summer. Perhaps that is the next step, (including other disciplines in safety meetings) because it is inevitable that each discipline will have it's own problems. Eventing is leading the way to improve horse and rider safety.

    Comment


    • #42
      As far as pulmonary embolisms or ruptured aneurysms, these can happen at ANY time a horse's heartrate is up or it is stressed. How about breeding stallions that drop dead after covering a mare?
      Fox Haven Farm, Inc.
      Home of 2002 JC Registered stallion Artrageous

      Artrageous has his own Facebook page!

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      • #43
        We can't shy away from talking about death. It's a big part of life.

        Death isn't a mystery or a message from god or proof of karma. It's just the end of a life and can happen in far more ways than we can imagine.

        One thing I've learned in life is to treat death as an equal, not as a looming, scary phenomenon. No need to be afraid. It's an equalizer for sure, as death eventually finds its way to all of us but we can often teach death a lesson or two by learning more about it. Cancer research, accident prevention, safety initiatives -- all that comes from looking hard at the causes of death and working to eliminate them.

        Comment


        • #44
          Suffering is worst than death, and we have a lot of global suffering. Perspective is always important.
          Don't let anyone tell you that your ideas or dreams are foolish. There is a millionaire walking around who invented the pool noodle.

          Comment


          • #45
            Originally posted by fordtraktor View Post
            Believe me, if I saw any sort of death trend in H/J world, I would raise holy hell until they were addressed.

            Aortic ruptures happen in the H/J world too. I know of two personally. One was owned by a friend of mine, and was a low level hunter. And the other was one of Hap Hansen's horses in the early 80's. He died mid air over a big oxer. And I'm sure there are lots more, but since they don't happen in front of 50,000 people you may not hear about them.
            http://www.MyVirtualEventingCoach.com

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            • #46
              Originally posted by hamsterpoop View Post
              Perspective, people! Mother nature has ordained nothing but the most hideous deaths for prey animals in the wild. Weak, injured or old, they are literally torn to shreds and eaten alive by predators or have painful miserable deaths from exposure, injury and any small injury that festers and spreads. THEN they are torn to shreds by predators. Why don't you write Mother Nature a letter of complaint? We do a damn good job taking care of our animals IMHO. In humans,we cure cancer and suddenly everyone is dying of heart attacks.( or vice versa ) My point is that death, from a biological perspective, is normal and natural. Something will get us or our horses sooner or later. We have fewer colics, kepp them from being put down from now treatable injuries and suddenly we see other causes of death pop up. Not at all scientific but things are not nearly as simple as they appear on the surface.

              Very true.
              http://www.MyVirtualEventingCoach.com

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              • #47
                We had a horse die here locally during a dressage test, most likely of an aneurysm. I also recall a Training level horse falling over dead during it SJ round at Rebecca Farm a couple of years ago. Again, this stuff happens a lot more often than we realize. These horses weren't elite athletes, nothing fancy. Just doing a lower level tests. Happens all the time. I think we are just hearing more about it now due to forums such as this one. And this is a good thing, because we are able to talk about it and get the info out there, and possibly get more money into the research to make it better.
                http://www.chronicleofmyhorse.com/profile/MarnieCollett

                "It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."-Aristotle

                Comment


                • #48
                  So when a jumper drops dead during a competition, is that also a BIG PROBLEM?

                  Because that also happens, but no one seems outraged. But maybe that's because there are so many big jumper shows and no one webcasts them like they do Rolex.

                  Or what about the Arabian that drops dead during a halter class? Because that happens as well.

                  Horses die, people. I hate it, but it happens. And until the data is fully analyzed, no one can say what the real problem is. But it happens across all horse sports, and all we can hope is that we somehow figure out how to make it happen less often.
                  All I'm saying is that deaths happen everywhere, from any number of reasons. And some are more publicly known than others.
                  The truth is, there’s been a very disturbing trend in eventing, at many major events over the last few years that horses have been dying. That now, after Rolex weekend, I log onto COTH on Monday morning and was FRIGHTENED to read the board, because I didn’t want to hear about MORE horses dying. That it has been constant and consistent over the last several years. It is disturbing.

                  That is not the case when I log onto the H/J forum. In one year, the number of horses that die in enormously public ways at H/J shows is FAR fewer, and way further between.

                  We’re not really talking about horses that take a misstep on the lunge, fall in their field, get kicked in the schooling ring, whatever. These things happen equally across all disciplines of competition, and yes, injuries and deaths do happen. We’re talking about the upper levels of a sport that now has a reputation for being deadly, for killing horses, for killing riders, in competition.

                  I too would like to see some specific examples of hunters and jumpers who have died at the same rate in competition as eventers. As it stands right now, I just don’t see it adding up.

                  If you all want this sport to stick around, you need to address this BIG PROBLEM - yes, yes, it is a BIG PROBLEM.
                  ---
                  They're small hearts.

                  Comment


                  • #49
                    Originally posted by Trixie View Post
                    The truth is, there’s been a very disturbing trend in eventing, at many major events over the last few years that horses have been dying. That now, after Rolex weekend, I log onto COTH on Monday morning and was FRIGHTENED to read the board, because I didn’t want to hear about MORE horses dying. That it has been constant and consistent over the last several years. It is disturbing.

                    That is not the case when I log onto the H/J forum. In one year, the number of horses that die in enormously public ways at H/J shows is FAR fewer, and way further between.

                    We’re not really talking about horses that take a misstep on the lunge, fall in their field, get kicked in the schooling ring, whatever. These things happen equally across all disciplines of competition, and yes, injuries and deaths do happen. We’re talking about the upper levels of a sport that now has a reputation for being deadly, for killing horses, for killing riders, in competition.

                    I too would like to see some specific examples of hunters and jumpers who have died at the same rate in competition as eventers. As it stands right now, I just don’t see it adding up.

                    If you all want this sport to stick around, you need to address this BIG PROBLEM - yes, yes, it is a BIG PROBLEM.

                    I'm willing to bet that the rate of death by 'natural causes' is fairly consistant in the h/j world vs the eventing world. The difference is the amount of coverage it receives. Go back and read my previous post where my friend's low level hunter died of aortic rupture. Absolutely no one heard about it. Unlike when it happens at Rolex, where everyone in the country hears about it within seconds.
                    http://www.MyVirtualEventingCoach.com

                    Comment


                    • #50
                      Originally posted by lstevenson View Post
                      Aortic ruptures happen in the H/J world too. I know of two personally. One was owned by a friend of mine, and was a low level hunter. And the other was one of Hap Hansen's horses in the early 80's. He died mid air over a big oxer. And I'm sure there are lots more, but since they don't happen in front of 50,000 people you may not hear about them.
                      They certainly do, no one denies it. I hadn't heard of any until now, but of course there are some.

                      But the fact that you can cite two in nearly thirty years is telling. I can cite four upper-level eventers in two years, and there are many, many more hunter/jumpers competing than eventers. Something about eventing makes it happen at a much higher rate during competition.

                      If we figure out what causes it and how it can be recognized before it happens, then I will be the first to say that all horse sports stand to benefit, not just eventing. But the benefits would be higher for eventers, because the problem occurs more at the upper level of eventing. I don't think anything I have said is all that controversial.

                      Comment


                      • #51
                        Originally posted by lstevenson View Post
                        I'm willing to bet that the rate of death by 'natural causes' is fairly consistant in the h/j world vs the eventing world. The difference is the amount of coverage it receives. Go back and read my previous post where my friend's low level hunter died of aortic rupture. Absolutely no one heard about it. Unlike when it happens at Rolex, where everyone in the country hears about it within seconds.
                        How much are you willing to bet?

                        Comment


                        • #52
                          I'm willing to bet that the rate of death by 'natural causes' is fairly consistant in the h/j world vs the eventing world. The difference is the amount of coverage it receives. Go back and read my previous post where my friend's low level hunter died of aortic rupture. Absolutely no one heard about it. Unlike when it happens at Rolex, where everyone in the country hears about it within seconds.
                          Eh, that's pretty much what I just said:

                          We’re not really talking about horses that take a misstep on the lunge, fall in their field, get kicked in the schooling ring, whatever. These things happen equally across all disciplines of competition, and yes, injuries and deaths do happen. We’re talking about the upper levels of a sport that now has a reputation for being deadly, for killing horses, for killing riders, in competition.
                          However, BECAUSE it keeps happening in eventing, both consistently and extremely publically, it needs to be readdressed. Believe me, if horses and riders were dying at the rate of upper levels eventer in show jumping competition, it would be equally public.
                          ---
                          They're small hearts.

                          Comment


                          • #53
                            Originally posted by BLBGP View Post
                            Do you have stats on that? I've been showing H/J all my life and was only on the show grounds once when a horse broke a leg and was euthanized. A freak accident is mentioned from time to time on the H/J board, are you saying that news of all these other deaths is suppressed?

                            They are not talked about....but I was a show groom and knew of 3 in one year....which means that there were likely more that I didn't know about. I could walk by the tents and smell the DMSO drips. Also...many more hurt or died in training. Back in the day...you really didn't hear about since there wasn't the internet.

                            Horses are fragile creatures....they die very very easily. If you have them long enough, you will see it and have to deal with it....whether it be at a competition or at home. I don't care if you are a back yard trail rider or event/race rider. Obviously, the more strenuous the activity, the greater the risk and chance of injury. But even with being an eventer and show groom...I've seen more horse deaths or severe injuries with horses at home....and most have been when in thier turnout.
                            Last edited by bornfreenowexpensive; Apr. 27, 2009, 02:01 PM.
                            ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **

                            Comment


                            • #54
                              Originally posted by Trixie View Post
                              The truth is, there’s been a very disturbing trend in eventing, at many major events over the last few years that horses have been dying. That now, after Rolex weekend, I log onto COTH on Monday morning and was FRIGHTENED to read the board, because I didn’t want to hear about MORE horses dying. That it has been constant and consistent over the last several years. It is disturbing.

                              That is not the case when I log onto the H/J forum. In one year, the number of horses that die in enormously public ways at H/J shows is FAR fewer, and way further between.

                              We’re not really talking about horses that take a misstep on the lunge, fall in their field, get kicked in the schooling ring, whatever. These things happen equally across all disciplines of competition, and yes, injuries and deaths do happen. We’re talking about the upper levels of a sport that now has a reputation for being deadly, for killing horses, for killing riders, in competition.

                              I too would like to see some specific examples of hunters and jumpers who have died at the same rate in competition as eventers. As it stands right now, I just don’t see it adding up.

                              If you all want this sport to stick around, you need to address this BIG PROBLEM - yes, yes, it is a BIG PROBLEM.
                              Hey girl, no need to blow a gasket, I ,at least, am picking up what you are laying down, capital letters and everything. I doubt you subscribe to Eventing magazine but on page 58 of the last issue is the Cooperation and Collaboration: Following Through on our Safety Initiatives article. It's good, read it. I, for one, realize that the sport is dangerous and needs to be improved and am actively involved in that process. Instead of holding the shift key down on the word BIG why don't you contribute money or time to any of the USEF or USEA safety initiatives? Just a thought.
                              The ants are my friends. And they're blowin' in the wind.

                              Comment


                              • #55
                                Hey girl, no need to blow a gasket, I ,at least, am picking up what you are laying down, capital letters and everything. I doubt you subscribe to Eventing magazine but on page 58 of the last issue is the Cooperation and Collaboration: Following Through on our Safety Initiatives article. It's good, read it. I, for one, realize that the sport is dangerous and needs to be improved and am actively involved in that process. Instead of holding the shift key down on the word BIG why don't you contribute money or time to any of the USEF or USEA safety initiatives? Just a thought.
                                Um, how do you have any idea as to what I do and don't contribute to, financially or otherwise?

                                I'm merely emphasizing that using the arguement that "show jumpers and hunters die all the time" doesn't hold water when horses are publically dying year after year during one particular phase of competition in one particular discipline.

                                That's in the interest of perpetuating discussion, not sweeping it under the rug as "natural causes."

                                BTW, emphasis on "BIG PROBLEM" wasn't mine. Read what I quoted.
                                ---
                                They're small hearts.

                                Comment


                                • #56
                                  Fair enough! Didn"t know you were helping out the cause.
                                  The ants are my friends. And they're blowin' in the wind.

                                  Comment


                                  • #57
                                    I can't understand why there has to be such a fuss over this. Yes, its upsetting, yes its tragic, yes this was probably nautral reasons. Eventing deaths are up nodoubtly but they are trying to work on it. In every horse discipline things happen and people and horses die. At home, at a show, or on a trail ride. Have you ever looked up the est. deaths of riders and/or horses that were trail riding?? You'd be surprised its more than eventing So should we stop even taking our horses on the trail? All you that are going to stop riding in this sport going to stop trail riding or take up western pleasure? Oh wait, horses die in western pleasure also So do people. Over 5,000 horses died on the track since 2003!!! Are you going to stop watching the derby? It happens and the right people are trying to do something about it. You do have to realize that more people are eventing now than in the 90's and 80's so it just makes since with more horses and more riders at these levels you will have more accidents. Its like living now and living in the 50's. In the 50's there wasn't as many carjackings or people breaking into houses or robbing stores and killing others for no reason. Alot of that has to do with the number of people in this country now. More people, more crime. Same with eventing or any other horse sport, more competitors more accidents.

                                    I should rephrase my first sentance. There should be a fuss but not amoung us, we should be comrades and working together to help our sport.
                                    Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole

                                    Comment


                                    • #58
                                      I have to say- I get the same way Trixie has. I got the COTH Rolex preview and instead of wondering which horse would win, I wondered who would not make it back.

                                      I really don't think it is comparable to look at Grand Prix and running XC. Horses just don't tend to die on Grand Prix courses. There may well be similar rates of death.... but I imagine the HJ injuries are more cumulative and the deaths happen at home or back in the barn vs. a catastrophic failure on course. IE, the untimely death of a jumper probably isn't often caused by the act one time act of jumping a jumper course.

                                      I would think eventing would find a good partner in steeplechasing in examining deaths and solving problems. The sports seem more similar- horses are exerting over a longer time period etc. I would think that the physical stressors are more similar between eventers and steeplechasers than between HJ and eventers.

                                      I mean, if you want to tit for a tat to make yourself feel better- yeah, rip on HJ, but if you want a useful analogy look at steeplechase.

                                      Comment


                                      • #59
                                        Originally posted by magnolia73 View Post
                                        I would think eventing would find a good partner in steeplechasing in examining deaths and solving problems. The sports seem more similar- horses are exerting over a longer time period etc. I would think that the physical stressors are more similar between eventers and steeplechasers than between HJ and eventers.

                                        Statistics for steeplechasing and timber racing is a bit higher per number than eventing....which makes sense since racing is FAST, with solid jumps and a PACK of horses. And yes, they do examine them and use them both for trying to make all those sports safer.

                                        But just don't kid yourself....horses in general are dangerous. You can get seriously hurt and die anytime you swing your leg over them. I've known people to be killed loading a horse on a trailer, grooming them in the barn, riding dressage, riding on the trails, doing jumpers and eventing. I've known horses that have died at horse shows, at events, at races and most often....at home. They can drop dead in their stalls or in their fields...break bones, colic and do things I hope that you never have to learn about.

                                        No doubt eventing is dangerous....and so are all horse activities. Most event horses are extremely well cared for and well loved....especially the elite. They live fantastic lives and do not work very hard for their living....as I'm reminded every time is see an Amish buggy drive by....
                                        ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **

                                        Comment


                                        • #60
                                          Faster always means more dangerous

                                          Good job!

                                          The faster anything moves, the more it will be damaged upon impact. These are laws of physics, hence the HUGE amount of death in racing and the increased deaths in eventing.

                                          Somone made the point earlier that our horses are much better taken care of than they used to be, and someone else noted the relativity of it all (apologies for not putting appropriate citations here), and for those of us who have lived in the third world and seen starving horses (donkeys / camels / oxen) pulling huge loads through 100-degree heat on a crowded smog-choked street, our 4* horses have it pretty good.

                                          As a 40-year-old with a terminal illness who will not be around to help reelect Obama, I can honestly say that a short life in which you are taken care of is much better than a long one full of regular suffering. I'll take my plight any day over billions of others. And let's all give more money to rescue organizations.

                                          And I'll event till I die -- no higher than T because I don't think I could ever do P safely.

                                          Melissa

                                          Originally posted by rabicon View Post
                                          You do have to realize that more people are eventing now than in the 90's and 80's so it just makes since with more horses and more riders at these levels you will have more accidents. Its like living now and living in the 50's. In the 50's there wasn't as many carjackings or people breaking into houses or robbing stores and killing others for no reason. Alot of that has to do with the number of people in this country now. More people, more crime. Same with eventing or any other horse sport, more competitors more accidents.

                                          I should rephrase my first sentance. There should be a fuss but not amoung us, we should be comrades and working together to help our sport.
                                          Goodbye Sister Disco. Take me where the music fits my soul.

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