Thursday, January 6, 2011

Summit of the Horse

The Summit of the Horse in Las Vegas, NV has been going on all week. It is a group of ranchers, animal activists, and others discussing the need or not of horse slaughter in the United States. It has even recieved recognition from the Wall Street Journal.

In 2007, before horse slaughter was made illegal about 100,000 unwanted, untrainable, or otherwise useless horses were harvested, in the US and about 7,000 went to Mexico. Most of the meat was exported overseas for human consumption. By-products were used in the US for pet foods and zoos.

When the ban was enacted, about 54,000 horses with the number still rising, have been sent to Mexico. Unfortunately, our neighbor to the South does not have the same laws and regulations about humane slaughter as we do. Videos from Mexican facilities are unnerving to say the least and down right sickening in many senses.

The timing of the ban has created issues for many people. In 2007, was the start of the recession and many horse owners were and are unable to care for their animals adequately. Incidences of malnutrition and neglect have significantly increased since the ban. In addition to, horses being turned out on public and tribal lands to fend for themselves when owners are unable to properly care for them.

It is time to reenact horse slaughter in the US. It gives owners a humane, legal, outlet for unwanted animals. It allows for an exported product to help the economy. It also gives the horses a death with a purpose.