Comments about ‘Horse slaughter to be discussed in legislative hearing’

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Published: Tuesday, July 16 2013 5:35 p.m. MDT

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Tom Durfee
Sandy Level, VA

How come the Republicans would rather spend American tax payer dollars on an Anti American enterprise such as horse slaughter and not fund firefighters?

The U.S. Forest Service's $2 billion-a-year firefighting budget - the government's biggest - has been cut by 5 percent. Agency officials say that has meant 500 fewer firefighters and 50 fewer fire engines than last year. Just think of the 19 fire fighters that died, maybe if they had the funding that would be used to slaughter horses they would be alive today.

US Journalist
New York, NY

This legislator wants US taxpayers to put up millions of dollars to inspect slaughter plants so he can save a couple of hundred bucks on doing what 99% of responsible horse owners do without protest.

And what's he going to do with that couple of hundred bucks? Put it back into the horse breeding operation that's creating all those "unwanted horses."

I guess all those puppy mills need a sister industry to diversify the state's economy.

AnneMH
Halethorpe, MD

Let’s go through the horse slaughter method in stages. Transportation: Many haulers are former criminals and animal abusers. They admit to whipping horses in the face, blinding them, so they are more “docile.” Many horses also suffer broken legs from the cramped conditions. Slaughter: There is no method of humane slaughter for horses. The system designed for cattle is used on them, and is ineffective. Horses are flightier and have longer necks, making them harder to handle and restrain. Humane standards state that the first attempt (with the captive bolt) must be successful 95% of the time. Slaughter houses for cattle achieve 98%. Slaughter houses for horses failed to even achieve 90%. This is why they were closed in the first place. Also, a horse’s brain is positioned differently than a cow’s, so they are frequently conscious while they are dismembered. How is this humane?

AnneMH
Halethorpe, MD

Contrary to popular belief, slaughter houses will not take those old thin horses starving in fields. They want fat healthy horses. Horse slaughter does not solve a problem, it creates a market, and it creates money. Statistics have also shown that closing horse slaughter houses has decreased horse theft by over 30% in surrounding communities, so it stands to reason that opening one would increase horse theft. Then there are the health reasons: Horse meat is full of toxins. Look at the labels on horse products. The vast majority read “Not for use on horses intended for human consumption.” Bute, anti-inflammatories and supplements, anti-fungal and thrush treatments, wormers, chemical fly sprays… the list goes on. Because of this, Europe is considering banning horse meat from America. What market will be left? Bottom line: If you want to decrease abuse and neglect, place restrictions on over-breeding and increase penalties for abuse and neglect. Treat the disease, not the symptom. Euthanasia only costs a few hundred dollars, about what it costs to care for a horse for two months. Put the money out and give the horse a humane and dignified end.

MargaretL
Novato, CA

Wow no discussion on the drugs horses are given. And horses are not turned into dog food anymore because horses have drug residue in them. Bute etc. and now folks have to worry about frog juice. Horse owners need to step up to the plate and be responsible. No more culling your unwanted horses and dumping them on innocent folks.

Evets
Eagle Mountain, UT

It makes you wonder why all the comments are from the East Coast on an article published by and in a SLC, Utah paper. I realize there is a problem with unwanted horses here and elsewhere but I wonder why the motivation behind this out of state posting and organization behind it.

genobird
manhattan beach, CA

Evets---apparently you don't realize this is a FEDERAL issue. The entire US population would subsidize horse slaughter inspectors. Don't go all provincial on a issue that affects the whole country. The commenters have told you clearly why this is not just "Utah's" problem, whether you see that or not. The contaminated food supply is also not delineated by Utah state lines.

Hutterite
American Fork, UT

If we've made beef production 'humane' why can't it be done with horses?

ColletteG
Salt Lake City, UT

Horse slaughter is not, and never has been, the answer to neglect, abuse, or abandonment.

The crux of the problem is the over-supply of horses, caused by over-breeding. Slaughter, by providing an unholy avenue to easy profits, perpetuates the breeding of more and more horses. 92% of the horses sold at horse auctions every year are healthy and could (and should) be re-homed.

Opening up horse slaughter in Utah opens up our state to an unwelcome stigma. Horse slaughter plants pollute communities, destroy local economies, and waste taxpayer dollars to support animal abuse. We need to take horse slaughter off the plate, and examine humane alternatives.

Utah does not need to be known as a state where horses come to die.

Evets
Eagle Mountain, UT

Ginobird: I realize this is a national problem BUT it seems strange that almost all the comments are from out of state. When I originally posted they ALL were.
Still that does not explain how an article in the SLC newspaper ends up with extensive negative comments from out of state people. I am sure they are not sitting down reading the Deseret News daily for entertainment. I do suspect that word got out nationally to an animal rights group to spam the article with comments.
I guess I just get tired of people from out of state or region spamming many of our local reporting because of one or another political agenda. When you have your issues solved then come back and suggest how we can solve our issues. Overall I think we in Utah are pretty good at solving our own problems. You may not agree but I don't care.

Diana Kline
Kansas City, MO

Tom Durfee, I always appreciate your comments, but I have to say that many politicians from all sides of the isle are against horse slaughter, as are voters from all sides of the isle.

susan carter
santa fe, NM

"If you are having to choose between feeding your family or feeding your horse, please do the right thing and do not have horses. There are horse rescues who would be happy to have your horse. Sell your saddles and tack and buy some groceries. If you are planning to raise horses tom sell for slaughter to feed your family. Do the horses and your family a favor, have less children. This is argument of feeding your family is a deliberate ply to pull at heart strings. Sell the horse live to someone who would like to have it. Or, slaughter it yourself and feed it to your family. We do not need these foreign horse meat plants coming in to the US.

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