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What is your opinion in this situation ...

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  • #41
    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Quinn:
    Didn't want to touch this one but can't stop myself......

    An animal being euthanized by the humane society or an animal shelter are done so in a pain free manner. An animal being sent to slaughter is an entirely different story from the moment they get on the "meat wagon" to the moment they walk into the rendering plant. My Vet always referred to me as "unrealistic in my thoughts." He felt I was being an idealist UNTIL he went to the Owen Sound, Ontario facility and watched the process. He now encourages all of his clients to euthanize at home BEFORE sending them off. In my humble opinion, the $500-700 you receive can't compensate for the utter agony they experience. [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img]<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    even taking the horse directly to the slaughter house yourself, is a terrifying thing for the horse - the stench of blood, the scent of fear, the screams of the other animals - and plus often they are not even dead before they start slaughtering them.
    I'm sorry, Spot - this is not an attack on you at all, you know how much I like and respect you personally - this is just something that I have to speak up on.
    Putting them down on the farm is not fun, but it is very quick and painless for the horse. The vet usually gives them a massive dose of tranquilizer first, then the Euthanol. If they are standing, they will go down pretty fast, but that is because their brain function has shut down instantly, the legs buckle and they go down. It some times takes a bit longer for the motor system, muscles etc to stop twitching, but it is quiet, peacefull and as good as is can be ( which is to say, still awful for us who love them).
    I'm trying to run a business too. But sending the horses for slaughter is just not an option.
    Once they are dead, I agree that it doesn't really matter what happens to the body. It's nice if you have the place (and someone with a backhoe) to bury them, but if not, the deadstock people can be there as soon as the vet leaves.
    I'm not being a hypocrite, Spotty, I understand what you are saying, but I feel the same way about my own body. Once I'm dead, I don't care what they do with my body. But I'd rather die at home, in my own bed, with the one who loves me holding me.......
    and because we do it to chickens, cattle, sheep etc, doesn't make it right. Accepted practices are not necessarily good ones.

    re that mare- Prosperous was not a good or commercial sire - he had that one fabulous hard knocking filly (Miss Prosperous I think?)- so for racing, you wouldn't get much.
    Me being the optimist that I am, if you had the place to put her where she could have 24 hr/7 turnout in a quiet environment and had a chance to reevaluate her temperament before breeding season... at least you would feel that you had given her a chance.
    Also re Prosperous - not to say anything negative about anyone, but he may not have been kept in the best "conducive to good behaviour" situation either....just a thought. good luck Spot -

    and just to back up my rant with credentials - like Quinn - I have more old and crippled horses here than I have young ones... I'm serious about breeding great horses - but I also I know that keeping all these horse, from a "business" angle is not "smart". But there is more to life than money.
    Making the decision to call the vet and end a life is a monumental one. I'm not God, nor do I want to be. I am facing this with a few of mine now, and it weighs heavily on me every moment. But as horse lovers first and foremost, and their caregivers (whether it is a business or not) our responsiblity to them is to ensure them a humane end to their lives.
    sorry to go on so....
    A Fine Romance. April 1991 - June 2016. Loved forever.


    • #42
      I tried this...I even got the horse as a YEARLING. Had no training, whatsoever when I got it.

      I had this horse 5 (yes FIVE) years before I finally gave up. She had made progress, and I cannot tell you how sick I got of hearing "try breeding her". This horse was a complete NUT, I did not want to pass these genes on.

      I finally sold her, at auction, she did not go to meat, but she also didn't go to a kid. I can only hope that perhaps the woman who bought her was able to do something with her.

      Oh, the vets said she was the best behaved horse they'd ever seen that came from this particular farm....most of them were "on two legs".

      Life is too short to get killed by a bad horse. There are too many good ones around that need homes also.


      • #43
        I, for one, will answer. I don't think for a minute Fred missed the point. What it ultimately boils down to is, shipping is not an option. Period. Never has been and never will be. Period. I'm not just referring to the oldies I have. I am also referring to the not so great ones that for one reason or another just don't cut it. We have a great big TB who was bought for my husband. We were not made aware of the fact he was a biter. And I mean a chronic biter. Long story short, he no longer bites but we are very careful around him. If it came right down to it, he would have been put down. It is completely out of the question to ship from our farm. And yes, it is a business for us as well.
        \"If you are going through hell, keep going.\" ~Churchill~


        • #44
          I do enjoy the philosphical turn some of these threads take!

          In your hypothetical question, I would say that your responsibilty/obligation is to do what is best for your customer, the horse, and yourself. By refunding the buyer's money and taking the horse back to the dealer, you're out $250, but you have preserved your repuatation (and economic viability) as a seller, and also quite possibly the buyer's life. A horse that is nutso to the extent we have been discussing here will likely have a miserable "life" of abuse, injury, drugs, and/or neglect. The obligation to the horse is that he ends up in the best situation for him, and crucify me if you will, but for some horses that means to not be amongst the living. To debate death by euthanization versus death by slaughter is worthwhile, but the end result is the same. With slaughter at least you (you being Spot, in the hypothetical) get back most of your money, the buyer gets back all of hers, and the horse's remains can actually be used for something that will benefit other animals (and I am including people in that group of animals). Do the ends justify the means? It's a decision you must make for yourself.

          Heck, there's a reason I'm a vegetarian; I could not live with a clear conscience KNOWING what animals who are raised for slaughter go through so I can enjoy a steak. I personally think that if people had to hunt, kill, gut, field dress, and butcher their own meat, there would be more vegetarians. And better veggie burgers.


          • #45
            I didn't miss the point. I just don't agree. or with the other posters who equate euthanasia with sending to the slaughter house. The end result, death is the same. It's the getting to that point that makes all the difference. I'm not attacking you, just disagreeing. I think it is one of those things that each person has to decide for herself.
            re the last point, if you euthanize a horse, the carcass cannot (theoretically) be used for food, but it is used for other things such as hides, bone meal etc. I don't love the idea, but as I said before - I feel the same about my own mortal body. Once I'm dead, I don't care what they do with my body. But I'll repeat, I'd rather die quietly, at home. To put a horse down costs @$100, the deadstock removal people are either free or charge @$30.
            And again, because we treat other animals like commodities, with the bottom line and efficiency dictating much of what is deemed "acceptable practice", it doesn't mean it is right.
            I think we should all work towards the more humane treatment of all animals, and this includes their deaths.
            It's a business for me too. I'm just not a very good businesswoman.
            What's for dinner? vegetarian lasagna! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif[/img]
            A Fine Romance. April 1991 - June 2016. Loved forever.


            • #46
              <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> What, in your opinion, is my moral and ethical obligation to this specific horse that I
              bought 3 hours previous, strictly and 100% to re-sell and make money on? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

              I'm with Fred on this. I wouldn't go so far as to say that it would be "immoral" or "unethical" to send it to slaughter. But I certainly wouldn't be able to look at myself in the mirror if I did it.

              Just one reason I have never been, and will almost certainly never be, a "dealer".

              chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).


              • #47
                I have made it a rule NOT to buy or sell from/to a dealer. We have two on the farm currently which couldn't be "sold" on but nor could I ever send them back to where they'd been knowing they would go for meat. That is just my opinion. Plain and simple. I know what you are getting at wishing not to lose $$ but I personally can tell any horse under the influence of a tranquillizer and I'm sure you can too. Plus, let's face it, we're not talking great big bucks from a meat dealer and I see you live in Ontario so you know as well as I do there are laws in place to protect us when it comes to buying horses without having disclosures.

                I don't want to continue to argue. Suffice it to say you have your opinion and I have mine. There is no right or wrong here.
                \"If you are going through hell, keep going.\" ~Churchill~


                • #48
                  Spot, I don't want to continue to go round and round on this one. It is clearly a personal decision based on where your priorities lie. You and I do not think the same way. That isn't a crime, nor would it prevent me from doing business with you some day. Would I sell you a horse? No. Case in point....a beautiful TB mare (registered) came from the Kitchener sale via the meat man we know personally. We knew up front she would have a "glitch" or two. We paid $2100.00 for her, made sure she was sound for breeding purposes and bred her to Rio Grande. The resulting picture is attached.

                  Turns out she had blown the sheath around her deep flexor tendon in her hind leg as a two year old and her owner sent her to auction knowing full well she would end up in a can eventually. Because we have way too many horses, we sold her to a very reputable breeder for $1,000 with a written contract stating she will come back to us for her retirement. Yes, we're way too soft for our own good but again, it boils down to priorities. Not saying yours are better or worse, just different. And I now retire from this discussion.
                  \"If you are going through hell, keep going.\" ~Churchill~


                  • #49
                    I agree totally with Fred and HaynOats. I would think that anyone involved in the horse business origonally chose that career out of love for horses. How someone gets from there to what Spot discribes just amazes and disgusts me.
                    Putting the all mighty dollar before the wellfare of the animal is not new in this industy and is the attitude responsible for killing horses for insurance, drug violations, and just about every abusive practice we hear far too much about in this business.
                    Yes, the morally and ethically correct thing to do would have been to eat the cost and euthanize them humanely at home, no matter if you owned them for 1 hour or a lifetime. Then learn to be more selective when purchasing a horse for resale.
                    I'm sure there were not that many horses out of what you bought and sold that were so dangerous to warrent being put down. I doubt that doing the right thing by them would have sent you to the poor house.


                    • #50
                      Is it ethical for humans to own animals AT ALL if we are not omniscient, omnipotent, and benevolent beings? (and I would argue that it's pretty much impossible to meet those requirements)

                      If we truly have the best interest of horses at heart, would we house them in 12x12 boxes or ride them around arenas and over obstacles? I'm not so sure I would. Yes, I "own" a horse (although I prefer to think that I am her steward as opposed to owner), she lives in a stall for most of the day, and when I ride, it's me choosing what we do. I do this not because it is how the horse would like to live, but because I benefit from it. I have also held a cat prisoner for 16 years [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif[/img]. It just seems that no matter what we use these animals for, whether it's for companionship, competition, income, or food, we are USING them for our benefit. Is it ethical to use another living being for our benefit?

                      On that contemplative note, I must get to work! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]


                      • #51
                        The bottom line is that we all have to make choices and have to be able to live with them.
                        At one time I lived very close to both Penn National and New Holland auction. I've gotten all five of my previous jumpers from either the track, auction or as a rescue cases. Actually my present horse is the first that I've ever paid more than $500 for. (And boy did I make up for the freebee's with his price tag). I went into the situation with my eyes wide open, knowing there was potential to end up with a horse that was not able to do what I wanted and in the case of both the rescue horses one who may well be too dangerous to keep around. I got lucky, all that I bought or took in turned out fine. My choice had they not would never had been sending them off to the killer. That's just not something I could live with. Obviously you can and that's your choice, I don't agree with it and yes, I do find it repulsive. But that's just my opinion based on my values. Now will I ever make money in the horse business? Probably not! Every time I've tried I just end up with another pet! and more overtime to support them all!
                        As far as the horse with the heart condition you mentioned. First, the whole situation is bad. Putting the jockeys, other horses, and future owners at risk is downright criminal.
                        There is no way to answer your question as to who is responsible. I can only speak for myself. If I had bought the horse, had the resources and he was not in pain my choice would have been to turn him out and start saving for my next horse, this time investing in a good prepurchase exam. Barring that, most likely would have had him put down at the hospital.
                        So, Can I leave my rose colored glasses on a while longer?


                        • #52
                          <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> But not with one of my sale horses, when I was buying and selling 40 or 50 of them a year. It was a business, dealing in commodities. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                          Enough said. (And very, very sad [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img] )

                          I think Joseph Conrad said it best...


                          • #53
                            And Spot, to answer your original question about the 2 hour horse, I would keep it, try to retrain it or put it down and take the loss. To me a horse is a responsibility that I take on the moment I agree to accept it. Just like a stray cat or dog, if I pick them up, I will find them a home, keep them, or have them humanely put to sleep. I personally just couldn't sleep doing anything else. I sold one horse at an auction that I believed was a "non meat sale". The horses I have seen go thru are all nice prospects, but I lost track of her, and still worry to this day - 10 years later. If it was a money issue, that I needed to get the few dollars back that a meat dealer would give me, I would get out of horses.

                            Sorry, Spot, that is just how I feel. And yes, IF I liked your black mare, and if I had the money to ship (which I don't at the moment), I would love to give her a try and see if her temperament is really genetics or environment. As to her "genetic" kicking, I find this really questionable. I would think more that maybe those TB's just couldn't take the 24/7 stall, but I am not sure any horse should be able to put up with that for extended periods.

                            My stallion Nevada has the most incredible disposition of any stallion that the vets who work with him have ever seen. Would he be the same in a different environment? I am sure he would be less laid back if handled differently.

                            I think horses have a genetic tendency to be hotter, or calmer. More sensitive or not. But I believe how they are treated creates what they become with those tendancies - I don't believe evil horses are born. I have seen several horses that have been ruined, and I may not think the cost of feeding them is worth it when so many more deserving animals could be cared for, but I would not put them on a truck.


                            [This message was edited by Fairview Horse Center on Nov. 29, 2001 at 01:04 PM.]


                            • #54
                              I just read your profile and realize who you are. Having said that, you will remember the stallion "Farnsworth." Makes you shudder just to think doesn't it?

                              Many years ago, I purchased a 3 year old filly by him and this was before many of his babies were on the ground. Pretty soon though, his bizarre behaviour came through. 99% of Farnsworth babies were just plain nuts. My filly broke my wrist and my jaw and put my top teeth right through my bottom lip. Not knowing much about breeding at the time, I bred her to a wonderfully quiet Holsteiner and she presented me with a carbon copy of herself. He is now a 15 year old lawn ornament. Danny Foster rode a Farnsworth by the name of Charisma many years ago and that horse was exactly the same. I believe Gail Greenough owned it first?? In my experience, the mare tends to have 60-70% influence on the babies. Anyway, for that reason, I would NEVER again breed anything but the best mare I can afford to the best stallion I can afford.

                              And after all of the emotional responses I have given, I am answering your original question.
                              \"If you are going through hell, keep going.\" ~Churchill~


                              • #55
                                <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by coco:
                                Quote: " But not with one of my sale horses, when I was buying and selling 40 or 50 of them a year. _It was a business, dealing in commodities._ "

                                Enough said. (And very, very sad [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img] [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_frown.gif[/img] )<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                                Maybe its sad to you, but please remember that not everyone is as emotionally attached to their animals as you, or as North Americans in general.

                                From what I understand about Europe - horse breeding and selling is very businesslike, and probably very "cold" as someone above said. From what I've heard and read about some of the big sales barns over there horses are very much a commodity. The three year olds are trained very hard, jumped big, and asked to do passage etc. and if they fail, they are rejected and the rest sold for high prices. Horses are "things" to many people not lovely dovey individuals with fluffy names like Barney, Snookums or Princess or whatever. They are money-making commodities.

                                I guess what I'm trying to say is that just because some of you think that Spot's views on her horse business are horrible, doesn't mean that this is not a common happening.

                                We north americans are known for coddling our pets and animals [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

                                I'm surprised that people are giving Spot such a hard time on her decisions.
                                You Strike Me Still


                                • #56
                                  Thanks for even considering taking the mare. She does not fit into your business plan and you are making a decision accordingly. You are a wiser businessperson than I am. I can't "go look", although I have met 2 or 3 horses I wouldn't bring home. A good friend runs a legitimate OTTB adoption agency and selects mine for me. She selects them based on my skill level and objectives. I have three beautiful mares that I love dearly. They each are different than when they first came to me. More calm well adjusted and have a natural sweetness I would not have recognized when I got them. My friend knew, I didn?t. A lifetime of experience shows. The down time has really changed their demeanor. Yes, they are spoiled. When Heidi first got here she was always a moment away from panic. My eyes never left her every second I was with her for the first 6 months. Doc was a quivering mass of flesh every time I got her out of the field. She thought a breeding chute is a starting gate and panicked. Now, two of the three are palpated while tied with a lead line, the other, cross ties. They are different from when they came, but none came mean. I don't have a "hot" one in the little herd. I know I wont be the person to "fix" a horse with a serious behavior problem. Thanks for the topic. Much has been said and I will temper my own activities based on insights offered.

                                  [This message was edited by BaysAbound on Mar. 19, 2002 at 09:39 AM.]


                                  • #57
                                    Spot - I think you have quite a few people on this board that don't agree with your decision to let this mare go but has anyone seriously offered to take her?

                                    As someone who obviously makes a living from buying, selling and breeding horses I am very happy that you would not consider taking on this mare. I am a potential buyer and I would not like my face kicked in or my back broken when as an unsuspecting buyer I happen along on one of these poor horses. There are many people who are looking for a bargain out there and might buy a horse like this if the price is right. I once had a buddy that bought a horse from an auction which ended up rearing up and falling back on her - yes, she broke her back but luckily she was able to walk again. I don't know if I could send a horse off to the slaughter house but I wouldn't have any problem having a dog euthanized if it attacked a child, I still believe that the well being of people should come first.


                                    • #58
                                      Kafue seems to have misunderstood most people's responses, or perhaps she has skipped over most of the discussion. NO ONE is critical of Spot for not taking the mare, that I can tell.
                                      A Fine Romance. April 1991 - June 2016. Loved forever.


                                      • #59
                                        things have really taken off here and lots of different opinions are floating around!!! [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_eek.gif[/img]

                                        I can't get into the hypothetical's or "case studies" but ofcourse have my own point of view.

                                        I personally could never send a horse for meat. I guess for myself there is the emotional attachment to them no matter what......even the ones who have tried to kill me and not succeeded! However with that said my family is European and enjoys horse meat as a delicacy. I personally know what it looks like and won't eat it but it is available when we have a family gatherings at Opa and Oma's. I am not going to dictate to my family if I think them eating horse is right or wrong, to them it is just another type of "meat" to eat. Even if we don't like it horses do facilitate and supply a food source even if we don't like it....like most livestock they can and are eaten.

                                        I think the issue here is mostly the way in which the horse eventually gets to its final resting place. What I personally would do is entirely different and for different reasons then Spots decision. Her's was a financial basis and it was run as a business. She had no emotional atachment to the horse coming and was training them specifically for re-sale. If the horse for whatever reason was not suitable for its required work she had no problem trying to re-coup her money. Like I said I don't have the heart to send a horse for meat but I also see the flip side of the coin. Would it be my choice, no, but I do know that some in my family would have no qualms with shipping a horse for meat in order to offset some of the costs associated with the business. They have even questioned why I keep the old mare around when I can't do anything with her. In Europe horses are moved around like a commodity and horses we prize and are a dime a dozen over there are shipped to market no problem, no questions asked and definetly for less reasons then being a "killer horse". The Europeans run their breeding, training, re-sale barns with the eye to make profit. Many of our horses in comparison here live very luxurious and cushy lifestyles. So partially it is how you percieve and are raised and your mentality between it being a pet and a business. I can't say which is right or wrong but I have been exposed to both sides.

                                        Its a personal choice and one which everyone has to live with for themselves. For me I seem to collect horses and have re-habilitated, nurtured and taken in some intersting beasts [img]/infopop/emoticons/icon_smile.gif[/img]

                                        I doubt I added much or helped but I do think everyone needs to understand that we all run our businesses differently and right and wrong is being based on emotions, personal experience and mentality.

                                        I'll regress and go into lurking mode,



                                        • #60
                                          <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> In Europe horses are moved around like a commodity and horses we prize and are a dime a dozen over there are shipped to market no problem, no questions asked and definetly for less reasons then being a "killer horse". The Europeans run their breeding, training, re-sale barns with the eye to make profit. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

                                          I have heard the that "unfit" horses are sent to slaughter instead of having them in the gene pool. While these horses would make fine event horses or backyard horse, they are "exterminated" to prevent others like them being produced.

                                          ~Rox Dene is too PERFECT!!!!~