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									Cruel Deaths in Mexico a Result of Closing
  U.S. Horse Processing Plants: AVMA
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                            According to the USDA Market News, October              “The AVMA does not support horse
October 4, 2007                                 4 report,         slaughter,” Dr. Lutschaunig said. “Ideally,
                                                   AL_LS635.txt , 31,086 horses declared as          we would have the infrastructure in this
SCHAUMBURG, Ill.                                   animals intended for slaughter have been          country to adequately feed and care for all
    Efforts to shut down horse processing       exported to Mexico so far this year. At this point
                                                          last year the total was 6,391.
                                                                                                     horses. But the sad reality is that we have a
plants in the United States have led to
                                                                                                     number of horses that, for whatever reason,
increased abandonment and neglect of horses     as the AVMA has repeatedly warned, horses            are unwanted. Transporting them under
in this country and the inhumane death of       are being abandoned in the United States or          USDA supervision to USDA-regulated facilities
horses in Mexico, according to the American     transported to Mexico where, without U.S.            where they are humanely euthanized is a
Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA).          federal oversight and veterinary supervision,        much better option than neglect, starvation,
    Dr. Mark Lutschaunig, director of the       they are slaughtered inhumanely.                     or an inhumane death in Mexico.”
AVMA Governmental Relations Division, says           “The reality is, the HSUS has done                  For more information, contact Michael
that the AVMA, far from being pro-horse         nothing to address the real issue here, and, in      San Filippo, media relations assistant, at
slaughter, opposes bills banning slaughter      fact, by seeking to ban horse slaughter, they        847-285-6687 (office), 847-732-6194 (cell), or
because there are no provisions to take care    have made things significantly worse,” said           msanfi
of the more than 100,000 horses that go         Dr. Lutschaunig. “If they really wanted to do
unwanted annually in the United States.         something productive to improve the welfare          The AVMA, founded in 1863, is one of the oldest
    “If they think that by passing one of                                                            and largest veterinary medical organizations
                                                of horses, they would address the issue of           in the world, with more than 75,000 member
these bills they’ll get rid of the problem of   unwanted horses in the United States.”               veterinarians engaged in a wide variety of
unwanted horses, they’re simply fooling              Even if a bill passes banning the               professional activities. AVMA members are
themselves,” Dr. Lutschaunig said.              transport of horses for slaughter, it would          dedicated to advancing the science and art of
    Efforts by groups calling for an end        be nearly impossible to enforce. Such a law          veterinary medicine, including its relationship
to horse slaughter, such as the Humane                                                               to public health and agriculture. Visit the AVMA
                                                could easily be circumvented by transporting         Web site at to learn more about
Society of the United States (HSUS), have       and selling horses as “working” or “pleasure”        veterinary medicine and animal care and to
led to the closure of the three remaining       horses, only to have them end up in an               access up-to-date information on the association’s
processing plants in the United States. Now,    unregulated foreign slaughter facility.              issues, policies and activities.                                             Page 12                                                             319-365-7314
    Sen. Landrieu, Reps. Schakowsky and Whitfield
   Join HSUS to Renew Call for Passage of American
           Horse Slaughter Prevention Act
October 4, 2007 - New video reveals                       “The recent Seventh Circuit court ruling            Illinois is home to the last remaining horse
inhumane treatment of American horses               upholding Illinois’ ban on horse slaughter is             slaughter plant in the country, and the ruling
shipped to Mexico for human consumption             a very positive step,” said Sen. Landrieu. “But           effectively ends all slaughter of horses for food
                                                    it is not enough – we must ensure that                    in the United States.
    Although all U.S. based horse slaughter
                                                    horse slaughter is prohibited in every state          • April 26, 2007 – U.S. House of Repre-
houses have been shut down, thousands of
                                                    in America. Now America’s horses are being              sentatives passes H.R. 249 to restore a
American horses are still shipped across our
                                                    beaten and dragged across the border                    decades-old ban on the commercial sale and
borders into Mexico and Canada where they                                                                   slaughter of wild horses first enacted under
                                                    into Mexico and Canada so that they can
are inhumanely butchered and sold for human                                                                 the Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and
                                                    be inhumanely slaughtered for food. I will
consumption abroad. Dramatic new images of                                                                  Burros Act of 1971. House vote: 277-137
                                                    continue to fight in Congress to end this
the cruelties of this transport caught on fi lm by                                                         • April 25, 2007 – U.S. Senate Commerce
                                                    brutal practice and ensure that American
a Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)                                                                Committee voted 15-7 to approve S. 311.
                                                    horses will no longer be savagely slaughtered
investigative team were unveiled today at a
                                                    for human consumption.”                               • January 19, 2007—The 5th Circuit Court
Capitol Hill news conference.
                                                         “While this footage is disturbing for us to        of Appeals upheld a 1949 Texas law
    Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) and Reps.                                                                    banning the sale of horse meat for human
                                                    watch, our discomfort pales in comparison to
Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) and Ed Whitfield (R-                                                                 consumption. In February, the court rejected
                                                    the pain and suffering these horses are forced
Ky.), chief sponsors of the American Horse                                                                  a petition from the Texas slaughterhouses to
                                                    to endure before they are brutally slaughtered,”
Slaughter Prevention Act (S.311/H.R. 503),                                                                  reverse that ruling.
                                                    said Rep. Schakowsky. “Watching this graphic
joined The HSUS at the news conference to                                                                 •    September 7, 2006 – U.S. House of Repre-
                                                    video only strengthens my determination to
emphasize the critical importance of this                                                                     sentatives passes H.R. 503, the American
                                                    ban horse slaughter and the export of horses
legislation. The three lawmakers called on                                                                    Horse Slaughter Prevention Act. The 109th
                                                    for slaughter. We need to put an end to this
colleagues to swiftly pass the bill this year. If                                                             Congress adjourns before the Senate can
                                                    barbaric practice once and for all.”
enacted, this law would prohibit the export of                                                                consider the bill. House vote: 263-146
                                                         “In this country, we raise horses for sport,
American horses for slaughter. Additionally,                                                              • October 25, 2005 – House-Senate conference
                                                    work, recreation and companionship – not
it would impose a federal prohibition against                                                               committee completes its work on FY 2006
                                                    for food. The slaughter of horses is an affront
any resumption of domestic horse slaughter.                                                                 Agriculture Appropriations Bill, retaining the funding
                                                    to our culture and our beliefs. This barbaric
    “Our past fi lm footage from inside Ameri-                                                               limitation on USDA inspections of horsemeat.
                                                    practice of transporting horses to Mexico
can horse slaughter facilities demonstrated                                                               • September 20, 2005 – U.S. Senate approves
                                                    and Canada for the purpose of slaughter
what a horror show these plants were --                                                                     the Ensign-Byrd Amendment to the FY 2006
                                                    must be stopped,” said Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.)
horses were not adequately stunned and then                                                                 Agriculture Appropriations Bill to prohibit the
left kicking while hoisted and having their                              Facts:                             use of tax dollars to pay for inspections of
throats slit,” said Nancy Perry, vice president     •   According to the USDA, 100,800 American             horsemeat. Senate vote: 69-28
of government affairs for HSUS. “Now that               horses were slaughtered in three foreign-
                                                                                                          • June 8, 2005 – U.S. House of Represen-
states have shut their plants, our horses are           owned slaughterhouses in 2006. Another
                                                                                                            tatives approves the Sweeney-Spratt-
                                                        37,000 were sent to Mexico or Canada for
subjected to intense suffering and abuse                                                                    Rahall-Whitfield Amendment to the FY 2006
                                                        slaughter and 4000 were imported from
during long trips to Mexican slaughterhouses                                                                Agriculture Appropriations Bill to prohibit the
                                                        other countries into the U.S. for slaughter.
where they are stabbed to death. It is time                                                                 use of tax dollars to pay for inspections of
for this carnage to end and for Congress to         • The United States Department of Agriculture           horsemeat. House vote: 269-158
pass H.R. 503/S. 311 and ban the slaughter of         documents that more than 92% of horses              • May 19, 2005 – U.S. House of Represen-
American horses -- and their export for such a        slaughtered were in good condition. These             tatives approves the Rahall-Whitfield
purpose -- once and for all.”                         healthy, productive horses could have been            Amendment to the FY 2006 Interior
    Overwhelmingly, Americans are against             adopted through one of the 400 plus rescue            Appropriations Bill to restore federal
                                                      operations in existence today.                        protections from commercial sale and
the slaughter of horses to satiate the palate
of diners overseas; only Congress has the           • A bipartisan group of lawmakers (Senators             slaughter to wild horses and burros. The
authority to effectively prohibit export of           Mary Landrieu (D-La.), John Ensign (R-Nev.)           provision is stripped in conference from the
                                                      and Reps Janice Schakowsky (D-Ill.), Ed               final bill. House vote: 249-159
horses across international borders. State
                                                      Whitfield (R-Ky.), John Spratt (D-S.C.), and
laws, such as ones in Texas and Illinois,                                                                 The Humane Society of the United States
                                                      Nick Rahall (D-W.V.) is working to ban horse
have successfully shut down local horse                                                                     (HSUS) is the nation’s largest animal
                                                      slaughter nationwide. The legislation would
slaughter plants – but the U.S. still lacks a                                                              protection organization For more than
                                                      prohibit the export of horses for slaughter.
comprehensive federal ban to end this cruel                                                                  a half-century, The HSUS has been
practice. Legislation previously passed both                                                              fighting for the protection of all animals
                                                    • September 21, 2007 — The United States
chambers by large, bipartisan majorities, yet                                                                through advocacy, education, and
                                                      Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
no bill permanently prohibiting the slaughter                                                             hands-on programs. Celebrating animals
                                                      upheld the State of Illinois' decision to ban the
of American horses for human consumption                                                                  and confronting cruelty -- On the web at
                                                      slaughter of horses for human consumption.
has ever made it to the President’s desk.                                                                  

Winter, 2007                                                               Page 13                                       
                                 Unwanted Horses Coalition
    The mission of the Unwanted Horse Coalition           the mounted patrol, there are questions                16. Can the original owner ask for the horse
is to reduce the number of unwanted horses                every owner should ask before giving up                back?
and to improve their welfare through education            care and control of their horse. In order to           17. Will the facility provide routine and
and the efforts of organizations committed                ensure that your horse is placed within the            emergency veterinary and dental care and
to the health, safety, and responsible care and           best-suited organization, please consider              farrier needs?
disposition of these horses.                              asking the organization(s) the following:              18. Does the facility provide training/re-training
                                                                                                                 for the horse?
Facilities that Accept Horses
                                                          1. Does the facility subscribe to accepted             19. What are the physical characteristics of the
   To complete the questionnaire or                       guidelines for operating such facilities, such as      facility, including barns, pastures and shelters?
view the facilities in the directory, go to               the “Care Guidelines for Rescue and Retirement, click                    Facilities,” prepared by the American Association      20. Can owners visit if they wish?
“Resources,” and follow the link to “Facilities           of Equine Practitioners?                               21. Have any welfare charges been brought
                                                          2. Is it an entity exempt from federal tax under       against the facility?
that Accept Horses.”
                                                          Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code?
                                                                                                                 22. Does the facility euthanize horses that
    Facilities will be listed by state. The               3. Does it file IRS Form 990 and forms required         cannot be placed? If so, will the facility notify
information from the questionnaire                        by the state? Will the facility provide copies?        the owner beforehand?
is intended to give horse owners more                     4. Does it have a mission statement and a board
information about the facility, including                 of directors? Who are they?                                The Unwanted Horse Coalition, a broad
contact information, whether it is tax                    5. How long has the facility been operating?
                                                                                                                 alliance of equine organizations that have
exempt, year founded, horse capacity,                                                                            joined together under the AMERICAN HORSE
                                                          6. If it is a facility that will use the horse, how
number of staff, and whether it follows the               will it be used?                                       COUNCIL,
“Care Guidelines for Rescue and Retirement                7. Does the facility have ample room for horses        is concerned that some horses may slip
Facilities,” published by the American                    to graze and/or move about?                            through the various safety nets within
Association of Equine Practitioners. Facility             8. Will the horse stay at the facility or be placed    the equine industry. Too many owners are
managers will also be able to describe their              into foster care? If the facility uses foster care,    unaware of, or do not give enough thought
organization and spell out its purpose and                how are foster homes screened?                         to, the available options, services and
philosophy.                                               9. Does it have an agreement regarding the use,        assistance available in the industry to help
                                                          boarding or care of the horse?                         them ensure that their horse has caring and
   The UHC Web site also features a series
                                                          10. If it is a facility that adopts horses out, what   humane support throughout its life.
of questions to help guide owners trying to
                                                          are the requirements for adoption? Does the
decide on a facility, program, or second use              facility follow up with the new owners to ensure         The Unwanted Horse Coalition will help
for their horse.                                          the horse is being properly cared for?                 educate the horse industry about this issue
                                                                                                                 and help people learn to OWN RESPONSIBLY
   This website has links to entities or facilities       11. Does the facility have a policy against
                                                          breeding or restrict the horse’s use in any way?       http://www.unwantedhorsecoalition.
offering to accept horses for various purposes.
                                                          12. What is the facility’s post-adoption policy on     org/?id=3
Reference to such entities or facilities does
                                                          breeding and use?                                         Unwanted Horse Coalition
not constitute or imply any endorsement or
                                                          13. If this is an adoption facility, are stallions
                                                                                                                    1616 H Street, NW
recommendation by the Unwanted Horse
                                                          gelded upon entry and before adoption?                    7th Floor
Coalition or any of its members. The coalition
                                                          14. What becomes of the horse when the
                                                                                                                    Washington, DC 20006
is not responsible for the representations
                                                          adopter or the user no longer wants the horse?            202-296-4031
made hereafter by entities or facilities or
                                                          15. Will the organization advise you before your
                                                                                                                    202-296-1970 (fax)
the contents of other web pages referenced,
                                                          horse is transferred to a new owner?            
the representations made thereon or any
representations by entities or facilities. The
coalition has not inspected any of these
entities or facilities and has simply accepted
them for listing at their request. Any individual
considering the transfer of any horse or horses to
such entities or facilities is responsible for visiting
them and investigating them before transferring
a horse to them.
Questions Horse Owners Should Ask
Before Donating Their Horse
   Finding a new home for a horse is not
always an easy job and various equine
facilities play a role in providing care or
finding new owners for horses. Whether
an owner is searching for the perfect
retirement farm or looking to find their
horse a new job in therapeutic riding or in                                                                                            photo by C. Eilers                                                         Page 14                                                               319-365-7314
               Humane Society Going to the Dogs
by Baxter Black, DVM
Used with Author Permission from his column:
“On the Edge of Common Sense”
    How many of you think of the Humane
Society of the United States as a benevolent
benign group whose focus is to rescue, care
for, and/or humanely dispose of the hundreds
of thousands of unwanted dogs and cats?
    So did I. I have always looked at them
with respect and lent my support. I am
saddened to see their transformation into
a radical animal rights group now aligned
with PETA and the Farm Sanctuary.
    They are by far the wealthiest non-profit
animal rights group. In 2005 they dedicated
$11 million (9.2% of their budget) to “cam-
paigns, legislation and litigation,” and $28
million to “Regional and local programs.” I
have seen them in action in my state.
    Why have they taken the activist ap-
proach? Money. They have so much and
greed is addictive. They display the mask
of their kindly historical image as they
continue to seek donations and invest their
cash. But behind the puppy face, they ap-
pear to have a darker agenda – eliminating
animal agriculture as we know it.
    If they were truly concerned about
                                                                                                Baxter Black
improving the welfare of food animals it
would be logical to assume they might build      they are not trying to improve modern ani-          selves touch not the burdens with one of
their own hog farm or veal barn. They could      mal agriculture, they are trying to eradicate it.   your fingers.” (Luke 11:46)
spend some of their wealth and effort into            In my discussions with representatives             “Woe unto you, lawyers! For ye have
trying to understand the complexity of           of the anti’s, I have observed they have very       taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered
producing food at a price affordable to the      little knowledge, much less experience in the       not in yourselves, and them that were enter-
masses, and improve it if they could. Then,      businesses and methods they are trying to           ing in ye hindered.” (Luke 11:52)
at least, they would have some credibility       destroy. I would be embarrassed for them if             Substitute ‘radical animal rights activist’
with the producers they are trying to put        they were not so shamelessly righteous.             for ‘lawyers’ and it’s right on the money.
out of business.                                      Jesus said about lawyers; “…Woe unto
    But they are basically a big money bully     you also, ye lawyers! for ye lade men with                      (800) 654-2550
corporation. And it has become clear that        burdens grievous to be borne, and ye your-          

                        Comments from Wayne Pacelle, President & CEO of the HSUS
 October 5, 2007 - Yesterday, after we issued        There’s no single fix to the the problem of      people who do so can be prosecuted. What-
 the call for groups opposing H.R. 503 and S.    unwanted horses, just like there is no single fix    ever happened to the ethic of personal respon-
 311 to honestly examine their position, the     to the pet overpopulation problem. The prob-        sibility? Do we want people who would violate
 American Veterinary Medical Association—        lems will be mitigated with a blend of policy       anti-cruelty statutes driving public policy?
 which has provided the moral cover for the      solutions, rescue and sanctuary work, and a             The USDA’s own data show most horses
 slaughter industry—lashed out at The HSUS.      large dose of personal responsibility.              sent to slaughter are perfectly healthy. The
 (See Story on page 12 of this issue)                The AVMA must recognize the reality of the      horses are opportunistically collected by killer
    The AVMA has it all wrong, and is side-      current situation. The U.S. slaughter plants        buyers who often misrepresent their intentions.
 stepping the issue. First, you better believe   won’t reopen, since the public is disgusted by          Vets take an oath to help animals. The oath
 that The HSUS is working on the unwanted        their conduct. We have to deal with the indus-      is violated when they oppose public policies
 horse issue—which is wildly overblown by the    try’s funneling of horses into Mexico, and the      to halt the inhumane slaughter of horses in
 advocates of horse slaughter. We work with      grossly inhumane treatment of the animals.          Mexico.
 sanctuaries and rescue groups throughout            Does the AVMA have so little confidence
 the country, and we have 700 horses and         in horse owners to think that they will start        Posted by Wayne Pacelle on 05 October 2007
 other equines on our Black Beauty Ranch.        abusing and starving horses if they cannot
 We are also looking to start a major new        send horses to slaughter? Handling horses in 
 horse rescue facility in the West.              such a way would violate anti-cruelty laws, and

Winter, 2007                                                          Page 15                                   

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