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Friend w/Cancer may need to Euthanize her 6 horses

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  • Friend w/Cancer may need to Euthanize her 6 horses

    A longtime friend of mine has breast cancer. Has to go thru chemo/radiation, the works. Finances are not good and all money will be going toward her own health issues. Currently boards them in Ocala. Three registered arabs (ages 29-15) a reg. Quarterhorse Mare, and two mini's.
    She is overwhelmed with what is happening in her life. I have offered to take one but she does not want to separate them and I am currently unemployed and sick with Lyme. She does not want to do it but feels it would be better than rehoming them and possibly ending up in a bad situation. I am pleading for her to try. All are sound but two of the arabs are not broke to ride.
    How do I reason with her. I am sure rehoming the mini's would not be a big deal, and the oldest arab (29) could probably be euthanized without huge guilt, but the rest are healthy. Will a vet do this? What would her options be? Does she have options? She really cannot emotionally get too into this decision as she starts treatment very shortly. I hate to see this happen but is this what the world is coming to?
    Keep in mind...normal is just a dryer setting.~anonymous

  • #2
    Wow...that is a tough situation. It will be really hard to home the aged, unbroke horses most likely. Like you said, the mini's may be easier...

    You said she boards them all right now in Ocala? Yikes, I'd hate to see that board bill!

    Best wishes, I hope she makes a full recovery and finds a good situation for all of her horses.....
    Concordia means "Harmony" in Latin.
    Full Time Dressage Addict

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    • #3
      I agree the minis at least should not be hard to place, and it seems a shame to put down horses who are still relatively young (especially if they're Arabs--15 is middle-aged!) Has she or have you contacted Arab rescues? They might be able to help.
      Author Page
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      Steampunk Sweethearts

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      • #4
        I'll probably get flamed for saying this, but .............how extremely selfish. How sickeningly selfish.

        I saw on another thread that only 3-10% of horses sold in the US get shipped for slaughter. Seems awfully unreasonable to kill them when there is a 90% chance that they would get a home.

        I understand that she is ill, sounds like she is acting very emotionally and not logically.

        People adopt minis. People who thought that they had plenty of horses adopt minis - they don't take a lot of room or a lot of food and they live forever.

        I hope that your friend gets better and I hope that her horses get to live also.


        Flame away!
        Holly
        www.ironhorsefrm.com
        Oldenburg foals and young prospects
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        • #5
          Originally posted by Iron Horse Farm View Post
          I'll probably get flamed for saying this, but .............how extremely selfish. How sickeningly selfish.

          I saw on another thread that only 3-10% of horses sold in the US get shipped for slaughter. Seems awfully unreasonable to kill them when there is a 90% chance that they would get a home.

          I understand that she is ill, sounds like she is acting very emotionally and not logically.

          People adopt minis. People who thought that they had plenty of horses adopt minis - they don't take a lot of room or a lot of food and they live forever.

          I hope that your friend gets better and I hope that her horses get to live also.


          Flame away!
          Cant say I disagree, however, 90% get homes....how many get "good" homes?

          I would certainly try to place them, especially the younger/healthy ones. A well established rescue would be a good option if the horses are "really" re-homable. Sometimes just giving them away to what you think is a good home, can really not be. I have heard (and Im sure most COTH members too) of horses being given to "good" homes, and then find out later the horses are starving and in terrible condition.

          The older arab might be a little harder decision to make.

          I wish her the best of luck in her decision. It really is a tough one to make!

          Comment


          • #6
            Before she rushes into something she can't undo, she should see how cancer treatment affects her. In one year my sister went through three breast cancer surgeries, radiation and chemo and two thyroid cancer surgeries and managed her regular life without too much struggle. There were tired days, but very few days where she couldn't work and take care of her family.

            How horrible to kill your beloved animals only to find that you have a harder time emotionally without them.

            StG

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Iron Horse Farm View Post
              I'll probably get flamed for saying this, but .............how extremely selfish. How sickeningly selfish.

              I saw on another thread that only 3-10% of horses sold in the US get shipped for slaughter. Seems awfully unreasonable to kill them when there is a 90% chance that they would get a home.

              I understand that she is ill, sounds like she is acting very emotionally and not logically.

              Flame away!
              OK, I'm flaming (ha, I don't really know how, my mom made me a people pleaser, hard habit to break)

              But really, euthanizing is not a bad fate for a horse! Especially in times like these... yeah, if she spreads the news, expands her contacts, she finds some homes for them, but, those people could/supposedly would be taking in some other largely useless except for pet value horse out of the thousands that need homes right now.

              Sounds to me like the same story I get from people who let a litter of puppies happen but feel no guilt because "I found them all homes!" Okay but what about the shelter puppy they might have taken in otherwise?

              Euthanizing older, unsound, or any horse not of more use than a pasture ornament, once you or trusted family/friends can no longer provide for it, is NOT a cruel thing to do - it is the RIGHT thing, a very tough choice, but the kindest, RIGHTEST thing to do.

              When we live in a world where every horse that needs a home can find it with a bit of effort in a week or two, I'll change my tune, but until then...

              Consider this a "friendly flame" - and maybe a wakeup call

              Comment


              • #8
                I feel bad for the owner and bad for the horses. All I can say (and I know many here will agree too) is that horses do help when you have cancer or a serious illness. They ground you, they give you a way to forget about the disease.

                I just hope that the OP's friend has insurance since in the States it is always a big problem. I hope she does reconsider and at least tries to find some of them homes. Maybe then, she could keep a few for her own mental support!

                Jingles for all involved!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Please keep in mind that she is facing death herself. By making a big deal about putting her horses down, you are making death a "feared" thing.

                  I do agree that she is likely incapable of doing the work it takes to find all the horses homes. I also agree that she may take solace in having one of her equine friends around, but I doubt that boarding while undergoing treatment makes sense...not only financially, but she will likely also feel great amounts of guilt for not being able to go see them.

                  She may also be heavily weighed down by all the stories of starved, abandonned, or abused equines, and can't stomach the thought of that happening to one of her horses.

                  Perhaps you could quietly work behind the scenes to see if you can find someone to adopt/lease a horse or two until she gets better?

                  Really though, her horses won't know. They will just have lived a good life to the end. Please do not make her feel guilty for her descision. She needs you as a friend.
                  Freeing worms from cans everywhere!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    CHT - well said! Mine were a great comfort when I went through the BC thing
                    but only had two. Plus I lucked out and didn't have to do the chemo-radiation thing. If things had gone the other way, then I don't know what their fate might have been as far as continuing under my care.

                    Don't pressure her in any way--you have offered to help. She needs to sort this out for herself. Just keep being a friend....

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'm not going to judge her at all. She does not have good finances, her horses are boarded, she has a whole lot to cope with. If really trustworthy homes cannot be found for these horses, she feels euthanasia would be the best option and I certainly know how she feels. As horses age they tend to go on the downward spiral once they are out of our hands where we do not have any control of their fortunes, or lack of. Her board bill must be huge. It is a horrible situationto be in. Friend of mine passed away from cancer and asked that her horse be put down; it was not easy for us to accept, but she loved that horse too much to risk her not being well taken care of for the rest of her life.

                      Which is her favorite horse - perhaps he can be a source of comfort for her for a while? What a sad situation to be in and we never know what twists and turns life will hand us.
                      Proud member of People Who Hate to Kill Wildlife clique

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I frequent an Arabian bulletin board that has a rescue and rehoming section. There are many stories and photos of horses that have been placed in good homes with happy endings. Hopefully if you read some of the threads and look at the photos, you will be able to let her know that there are happy endings.

                        Please consider posting them here for free to good homes. As with many boards, many of the posters are well known to each other:

                        http://forums.arabianbreeders.net/fo...-and-rehoming/

                        You will see that many of the older Arabs have been placed as pasture puffs, as many breeders just love these oldies and want to give them the retirement that they deserve.

                        As to the 15 y/o, that is not all that old for an Arab and he/she has lots of good years left.

                        Here is the story of my horse that I got from the Arab board (I just fell instantly in love with him when I saw his photos!):

                        http://forums.arabianbreeders.net/to..._1#entry460134

                        http://forums.arabianbreeders.net/to..._1#entry462996

                        I hope you can read a post or two from each thread and let her know that rehoming can be wonderful.

                        I don't usually post much, but I do hope that she doesn't euthanize her horses when there are owners that would care for them and love them.

                        Perhaps she might want to keep one for companionship and comfort?

                        Wishing all the best to your friend and hoping for her recovery.

                        Happy Trails~
                        Joyce

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Is she still in the early stages of dealing with this? When I had BC I thought some of the same thoughts. It is too soon for her to act. She needs to take some time. My first thoughts were, who is going to take care of my animals? Also, she will most likely be able to continue working. Maybe if she placed some of them she would be able to keep some. Encourage her to take it slow and help her think of all her options.
                          Jingles for her, been there, sucks.
                          www.ncsporthorse.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Your friend may be dying of cancer and you're more concerned that she finds homes for older unbroke horses?

                            How many threads have their been about horses ending up in bad homes, at auctions, on trucks to Canada?

                            I say put the horses down and support your friend.
                            http://weanieeventer.blogspot.com/

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by CHT View Post
                              Please keep in mind that she is facing death herself. By making a big deal about putting her horses down, you are making death a "feared" thing.

                              I do agree that she is likely incapable of doing the work it takes to find all the horses homes. I also agree that she may take solace in having one of her equine friends around, but I doubt that boarding while undergoing treatment makes sense...not only financially, but she will likely also feel great amounts of guilt for not being able to go see them.

                              She may also be heavily weighed down by all the stories of starved, abandonned, or abused equines, and can't stomach the thought of that happening to one of her horses.

                              Perhaps you could quietly work behind the scenes to see if you can find someone to adopt/lease a horse or two until she gets better?

                              Really though, her horses won't know. They will just have lived a good life to the end. Please do not make her feel guilty for her descision. She needs you as a friend.

                              very thoughtful and well said.
                              A Fine Romance. April 1991 - June 2016. Loved forever.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                My biggest issue with her decision is that she "does not want to separate." No one is going to take six horses. If there are good homes being offered (such as yours) for one or two, it seems illogical not to let those horses go, and maybe have euth as an option for the ones that can't be easily placed.

                                Also, since you are offering a home for one, could you tell her that if things go well for her, she can have the horse back when she's ready?

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  I'd support her with her decision.

                                  She has enough to worry about with her own health. The stress of worrying about the horses she loves when she can't care about them will make her fight all the harder. Stress doesn't help healing. Coth forums are chock-a-block with horror stories of horse adoptions going awry and terrible final times on horses final trip to Canadian or Mexican abatoirs.

                                  She's made the choice, I'm sure it was a difficult choice...no one has any right to tell her she's wrong or that she should do what makes THEM feel better. Sure wish more people would be this responsible.

                                  Horses don't have tomorrows or yesterdays, they have here and now. She's decided to make their here & now a good one.
                                  "Sic Gorgiamus Allos Subjectatos Nunc"

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by CHT View Post
                                    Please keep in mind that she is facing death herself. By making a big deal about putting her horses down, you are making death a "feared" thing.

                                    I do agree that she is likely incapable of doing the work it takes to find all the horses homes. I also agree that she may take solace in having one of her equine friends around, but I doubt that boarding while undergoing treatment makes sense...not only financially, but she will likely also feel great amounts of guilt for not being able to go see them.

                                    She may also be heavily weighed down by all the stories of starved, abandonned, or abused equines, and can't stomach the thought of that happening to one of her horses.

                                    Perhaps you could quietly work behind the scenes to see if you can find someone to adopt/lease a horse or two until she gets better?

                                    Really though, her horses won't know. They will just have lived a good life to the end. Please do not make her feel guilty for her descision. She needs you as a friend.

                                    This. Times 1000. Well Said CHT.
                                    -Jessica

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Originally posted by Iron Horse Farm View Post
                                      I'll probably get flamed for saying this, but .............how extremely selfish. How sickeningly selfish.
                                      You won't get flamed by me. I agree. And I'm a cancer survivor myself, so I know the fear and anger that comes with a cancer diagnosis, but its not an excuse to do something so selfish

                                      Some of the responses here assume a breast cancer diagnosis is a death sentence. It rarely is. Do yourself a favor and educate yourself.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Question: Could she even find a vet willing to euthanize 6 healthy horses?
                                        JB-Infinity Farm
                                        www.infinitehorses.com

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