Washington, DC (May 24, 2010) – The need for federal legislation ending the slaughter of and providing safer transportation for American horses came to the forefront again last Tuesday, as we witnessed another horrific accident involving an overturned cattle trailer carrying 30 horses.
At around 6:00 am on May 18, 2010, Christopher Dobbin of Missouri fell asleep behind the wheel of a stock cattle trailer hauling horses bound for slaughter in Mexico to a temporary feedlot in Texas. Eleven of the 30 horses died as a result of the careless and inhumane transportation methods used by Dobbin, who was issued a reckless driving citation. This unfortunate accident underscores the desperate need for quick and thorough legislative action to end the slaughter of American horses and provide safer transportation for equines.
TALLAHASSEE — Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Charles H. Bronson is reminding Floridians to create an emergency response plan for their animals as hurricane season approaches. Bronson says people should not wait until the last minute to think about how they are going to evacuate or shelter their animals during a disaster. People may need to leave their homes quickly and a well-thought-out plan will help ensure the safety of animals and the peace of mind of their owners.
Bronson’s Division of Animal Industry website http://www.doacs.state.fl.us/ai (click on “Emergency Management”) links to numerous websites that provide information about pet-friendly emergency shelters and hotels. There is also extensive emergency preparedness information for owners of large and small animals. Some tips for people with animals include:
May 17, 2010 – CHICAGO, (EWA) – Equine Welfare Alliance and Animal Law Coalition applaud the grass roots efforts in 2010 that have resulted in a series of political defeats for those who want to bring horse slaughter back to the United States.
Of course, commercial horse slaughter for human consumption remains illegal in the U.S. and no state law can change that. Nonetheless, proponents of the cruel practice have tried to use state legislatures to try to convince Americans to bring horse slaughter back to the U.S.
In Missouri, for example, a bill, H.B. 1747, introduced by state Rep. James Viebrock, purported to allow the state to register and license and even provide inspections for horse slaughter facilities. There was even talk of building a horse slaughter plant in a small town in the state.
WESTPORT, CT – May 10, 2010 – The EQUUS Foundation received a $25,000 grant from Newman’s Own Foundation to support its mission to educate the public about horses; provide financial support through the award of grants; offer insight on management and financial practices of the charities through a thorough review of their operations; and provide a network of interested individuals for volunteer recruitment.
“We are so grateful to Newman’s Own Foundation for their generosity, especially now in these difficult times for charities,” said Jenny Belknap, EQUUS Board Chairman. “This grant will help us build a more sustainable environment for horses and for the people whose lives they are benefiting, and enhance the ability of charities across America focused on equestrian and horse-related issues to accomplish their missions. What a majority of the general public is not aware of is in providing horses with homes and useful lives, people benefit, especially children.”
May 4, 2010 – NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) – A horse slaughter bill that was criticized by Willie Nelson has failed this session of the Tennessee General Assembly.
The measure sponsored by Republican Rep. Frank Niceley of Strawberry Plains was unanimously sent to a summer study committee by the House Finance Committee on Tuesday. The companion bill has been withdrawn from consideration in the Senate.
Niceley’s proposal stated that the slaughtering of horses is “best addressed by proper state regulations and inspection and not by banning the humane slaughter of surplus domestic horses at the federal level.”
Nashville, TN (April 27, 2010) – Legislation advocating the slaughter of horses for human consumption will be withdrawn for the legislative session in Tennessee according to the bill’s sponsor Representative Frank Niceley. This was following overwhelming public opposition to the proposal from the public, Tennessee Volunteers for Animal Protection, Willie Nelson, his daughter Amy Nelson and granddaughter Raelyn Nelson, long time supporters of the Animal Welfare Institute.
“We are pleased that Representative Niceley has agreed to pull his bill from consideration,” said Chris Heyde, deputy director of the Animal Welfare Institute. “There are many more humane and responsible ways of caring for horses in need and we look forward to expanding those in Tennessee. Slaughter certainly isn’t an option and we feel many legislators realized this.”
Amy and Raelyn Nelson, residents of Tennessee, testified against the bill during a committee hearing earlier this month and plan on returning to Nashville to meet with legislators to discuss equine welfare issues very soon.
April 8, 2010 – ReRun Inc., the nonprofit Thoroughbred adoption program, announced it will be holding its spring eBay auction of Moneighs on April 25, 2010. The auction of 30 paintings created by famous equine artists will feature current superstar Zenyatta and her recently-retired stablemate, Life Is Sweet, as well as Kentucky Horse Park Hall of Champions Cigar, Funny Cide and DaHoss. The auction will also feature paintings by leading New York and Florida Stallions and a painting by the beloved champion Evening Attire.
The spring auction, which ends on May 2nd, will include several paintings created by famous horses of other breeds including one by Rolex W., who will compete in the combined driving event at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games this fall. Champion Standardbred Staying Together also created a painting even though he is blind. Each Moneigh is an original, abstract painting created by a horse, using the horse’s muzzle, whiskers, hoof, and tail. Some artists, such as Funny Cide and Cigar, will paint by holding a paintbrush in their mouths.
Lausanne (SUI), 19 April 2010 – All horses show normal nerve sensation or sensitivity. Where that sensation is increased beyond normal limits it is called hypersensitivity. Hypersensitivity can be produced by a range of normal occurrences, such as an insect sting or accidental self-inflicted injury.
Hypersensitisation is the term used to define the artificial production of hypersensitivity and is contrary to horse welfare and fair play.
At FEI competitions, the determination of hypersensitivity in the horse is made by a combination of thermographic and clinical examinations, carried out by at least two experienced equine veterinarians.
Thermography is a means of detecting abnormal heat patterns of the skin through the use of an imaging camera. The clinical examination is carried out by observation and palpation (applying manual pressure).
Lausanne (SUI), 20 April 2010 – The FEI press conference, held on 17 April in Geneva, on the disqualification of the horse Sapphire ridden by McLain Ward (USA) in the FEI World Cup Jumping Final, is now available free-to-view on FEI TV in English. Visit www.feitv.org and register to watch for free.
The opening statement by the FEI President is available here.
Geneva (SUI), 18 April 2010 – An urgent appeal/protest was lodged this morning by the United States Equestrian Federation (USEF), McLain Ward (Person Responsible) and Dr Tim Ober (USEF Team Veterinarian) against the disqualification of Sapphire from the FEI World Cup Final. The FEI Tribunal heard the case for emergency relief to allow the horse to compete today. Following the hearing, the FEI Tribunal Chair Ken Lalo (ISR) denied the request for emergency relief on the grounds that the FEI Tribunal did not have jurisdiction to overturn the Ground Jury’s decision. This means that Sapphire remains disqualified from today’s final round of the FEI World Cup.
Sapphire, the horse ridden by McLain Ward (USA), was eliminated from the second round of the FEI World Cup Final on Friday night (16 April) and disqualified from the rest of the event following a positive hypersensitivity test.