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Trainers: If one of your former horses was just pulled from the kill pen...

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  • Trainers: If one of your former horses was just pulled from the kill pen...

    Hi,

    I am new to the racing forum...

    If you are/were a trainer, and a horse that you formerly owned and/or trained was just rescued from the kill pen at an auction, (or was in immediate danger of going to slaughter) would you want to know?

    Is there a chance that you would want the horse back if he/she had fallen on hard times?

    I'm curious because I am planning on volunteering with a group that goes to a local auction and tries to find homes for the horses that are headed for slaughter.

    I thought it might be a good idea to research the tattoos of the TBs and try to contact any former owners or trainers to see if they might want to adopt the horse back, or if they might foster or find the horse a new home. Do you think this would be well received? Or would some/most trainers be insulted if they were contacted?

    Thank you so much for your opinions. You just hear so many stories about horses going to slaughter when there was a former owner who would have taken them back, but had no idea of the horse's bad turn of luck.

    Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! Thank you again!

  • #2
    I don't know of any rescue that pulls horses from the kill pen that doesn't contact owners and/or trainers of the horses they rescue so you aren't exactly inventing the wheel. Its met with mixed emotions, some are horrified and can't wait to do whatever is necessary to make sure the horse is in a safe situation and some couldn't care less. I personally would definitely want to know.
    McDowell Racing Stables

    Home Away From Home

    Comment


    • #3
      I would take the horse back, reimburse the rescue's expenses and be very grateful that someone was paying attention.

      Comment


      • #4
        If they are just the trainer, I'd say they probably wouldn't want the horse back and would rather not know. What I would do if I were you, is look up and contact the breeder! Sometimes you will get one that will take the horse back since it had fallen on hard times.

        Comment


        • #5
          Unfortunately, most breeders do not take them back. Probably have better luck with the racing connections.

          Comment


          • #6
            We have gotten all sorts of reactions from a variety of former connections- we just approach it as "thought you might like to know"- educational more than anything else- bc you never know who actually sent the horse, etc. Some people are glad we called, some sad, some angry- you just never know. I too wish someone had called me about my old runner who in spite of my best efforts, and with my info written in big black sharpie on his papers, went to kill.
            Be a part of the solution~ Adopt a thoroughbred!
            MidAtlanticHorseRescue.org

            Comment


            • #7
              I would think that a polite, informative (not, "hey, your horse was just found in the kill pen, I am going to publicize this if you don't pay the $600 it costs to get him back, or put it on my website") would be ok, but be prepared for very few people to be able to, or want to, step up to the plate to help.

              It is a business to most people, and buying back or supporting a noncompetitive horse is not usually in the business plan.

              My other word of advice? Don't give the rescues a bad name by badgering the kill buyers/dealers. We need them to work WITH us, on the rare occasion that we can get help to save the horse.

              Good luck, it often can make you lose your faith in human nature...but the times you get help make it all worth it!
              Last edited by Barbara L.; Nov. 23, 2009, 09:14 PM. Reason: had to move the parentheses!
              Turning For Home, Inc.
              Philadelphia Park Racehorse Retirement Program
              www.patha.org
              turningforhome@patha.org

              Comment


              • #8
                Most trainers are small businesses operating on a month to month basis. Usually they worked with a horse for a fee years ago and maybe for only a short time. Sometimes they can or want to help but often its no different than most people on this board who would blanche if another horse (and another horse's board and expenses) were dropped on them suddenly--never mind one that they would be expected to buy.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I would want to know. I lost my barrel mare years ago and have never found her. She may have went to slaughter and I would have gladly taken her back. Good luck and thanks for your interest in helping the horses!!
                  Proud Owner of Acertifiable Sonny 1996 AQHA Sorrel Gelding
                  -- I loff my QH Clique

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Thank you to everyone for your input.

                    I'm not saying that I had a new idea or anything! Just that I had not done it before and was interested on opinions.

                    Of course I would be polite and would try to contact the breeder as well as any trainers or owners that were listed on the equineline.com reports. I was thinking that even if they did not want to take the horse back themselves, they may know someone who knew the horse (exercise rider, groom, etc.) that may be able to take him back.

                    Actually, I have one now who will be safe, but I think I will call the trainer anyway to see if they know of someone who would like to take the horse in!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Kelly in NJ View Post
                      Thank you to everyone for your input.


                      I was thinking that even if they did not want to take the horse back themselves, they may know someone who knew the horse (exercise rider, groom, etc.) that may be able to take him back.
                      I'm not a trainer or owner, just an exercise rider, but I think it's a good idea. There are some horses I gallop that I had strong attachments too. It's hard, the job is just to ride the horses every morning, and you never know when it's going to be there or leave. Some you do, some you don't, and some I really miss. So I do think it's a good thing to do, you might not get an overwhelming response to yes, I'll take him back tomorrow, but I think you are on that the breeder, owner, or trainer might know someone who would be interested. That said, it's a very fluid business, people come, people go, horses too, but you never know until you ask.

                      Quite a few years ago I spent about 10 months tracking down an OTTB that I owned that was "stolen" off a free lease, he did end up at Centennial Auction, with his papers (I was his last listed owner, all info was correct on them), NO ONE called me, his tattoo was legible and he had a distinctive marking. I was devastated to learn this. Took about 5 more months, thousands of dollars, but I got him back! If someone like you had been there, it would have been so nice (shocking though, I didn't know he wasn't still at his free lease, I had just gotten a nice update on him) to have just been able to get him home then. Good luck, I hope you have many happy endings!
                      WestWind Farms
                      Love means attention, which means looking after the things we love. We call this stable management.
                      - George H. Morris

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        When rescuing, you can also check out www.horsereunions.com and The Responsible Breeders List: http://horsereunions.com/welcome/list.html
                        "If you can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em."

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I wish it was mandatory to notify former owners/breeders before being sold at auction. And yes, I know that's a pipe dream. It would be nice if there was a database where horses going to Auction would need to be listed, say 30 days prior to being able to go to Auction. If the database was managed similarly to a program like the Virtual Stable, as an owner/breeder you could simply enter all of your former horses names and be automatically notified if they were listed as going to auction.

                          Ok -- before you tell me I'm silly and it's impossible -- I get it.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Soccermom,

                            I don't think it's silly at all! In my opinion, owner and trainers are not so much responsible, but breeders are. I find it unconscionable that any breeder deliberately makes a foal (it wouldn't be in existence if not for them) and then drops the ball on their disposition when their racing career is over (or, perhaps, never started). It is beyond sad that many of these horses reach a point when nobody gives a sh$$ about them anymore and they slip through the cracks.

                            I've taken the position that every horse has worth and not a single one deserves to endure pain, abuse, starvation or neglect because SOMEONE is responsible for their existence. I understand that there are no magic wands in the horse world, but we, the compassionate, responsible ones, should not be complacent or bullied into believing that we're silly to want the best for all of them.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by soccermom711 View Post
                              I wish it was mandatory to notify former owners/breeders before being sold at auction. And yes, I know that's a pipe dream. It would be nice if there was a database where horses going to Auction would need to be listed, say 30 days prior to being able to go to Auction. If the database was managed similarly to a program like the Virtual Stable, as an owner/breeder you could simply enter all of your former horses names and be automatically notified if they were listed as going to auction.

                              Ok -- before you tell me I'm silly and it's impossible -- I get it.
                              Where there's a will, there's a way

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by foundationmare View Post
                                Soccermom,

                                I don't think it's silly at all! In my opinion, owner and trainers are not so much responsible, but breeders are. I find it unconscionable that any breeder deliberately makes a foal (it wouldn't be in existence if not for them) and then drops the ball on their disposition when their racing career is over (or, perhaps, never started). It is beyond sad that many of these horses reach a point when nobody gives a sh$$ about them anymore and they slip through the cracks.

                                I've taken the position that every horse has worth and not a single one deserves to endure pain, abuse, starvation or neglect because SOMEONE is responsible for their existence. I understand that there are no magic wands in the horse world, but we, the compassionate, responsible ones, should not be complacent or bullied into believing that we're silly to want the best for all of them.
                                I agree 100%^^^
                                "Anti-intellect and marketing, pretty, pretty, who needs talent
                                Crying eyes, we're so outnumbered, fight for the right to remain silent" Buck 65

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Even if a breeder or former owner is not the position to take them back, perhaps they could contribute something to the horse's upkeep at the rescue. Every little bit helps.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by DickHertz View Post
                                    Where there's a will, there's a way
                                    For me, you hit on it.

                                    I've noticed in my life that the things people make a priority get handled.

                                    I'm also a good businesswoman. And I understand jetisoning divisions that aren't profitable, etc.

                                    However, I believe spiritually, practically, philosophically and ethically, that when entering a business in which the product involves living beings, we must be held to a much higher standard.

                                    Anyone who can't hack that -----shouldn't dip their feet into the water. There are a billion other ways to make a living, and to make $.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Interesting I posted in the minutes before I had to head out the door and I was sure my "idea" would be met with alot of negativity and reasons why it couldn't be done.

                                      I have to honestly say I'm only vaguely familiar with the regulations and record keeping that goes along with auctions. Who would logically step in to enforce the need for all horses going to auction/slaughter be registered and/or have a waiting period? From what I can see, that would be the biggest hurdle towards getting a database established. Otherwise, anyone who has ever used Virtual Stable knows it's amazingly easy to enter a horse's info and be notified whenever they work out or are entered to race.

                                      I know we're a small operation, and as such, we are connected to each and every horse we own/breed. We currently have a racer we're thinking of retiring listed on dreamhorse, and even though we're requiring references and I am making it clear he is always welcome back, I know there are no guarantees. We've probably only had him for approximately 2 1/2 years now and he means alot to us. I can tell you I'd DEFINITELY want to know if one of our "babies" was going to auction. I'd be there in a heartbeat.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        As an owner/trainer/breeder I would want to know, and then bring them home!

                                        Comment

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