Save the Horses of Breighmara and Create Nova Scotian Legislation Protecting Equines!
  • Petitioning Honorable Keith Colwell

This petition will be delivered to:

Nova Scotia Legislature
Honorable Keith Colwell

Save the Horses of Breighmara and Create Nova Scotian Legislation Protecting Equines!

    1. Ariel Mactavish
    2. Petition by

      Ariel Mactavish

      Dartmouth, Canada

     The horses of Breighmara Equestrian Centre, formerly an equine rescue affiliated with the SPCA, are in immediate danger. They are starving and many are dehyrated. In the last year, eight (8) have died, four (4) of them in the last four weeks alone, two (2) within 48 hours of each other.

     The stories coming out of Breighmara from boarders, lesson members, and concerned horse lovers all tell of starvation, horses being fed moldy hay, horses desperately dragging their handlers to water, and developing rain rot (a coat and skin wasting condition) from being left outside with little to no access to shelter. These horses are ridden and worked just as hard as healthy, fit horses are and some are competed provincially, including at the Maritime Fall Fair. There are horses of all ages at this barn, including a young foal. Horses have been shot and their bodies burned on this property.

     Why is this happening? Because Nova Scotia says it's acceptable. Horses are listed as "livestock" under current legislation. There is no formal protection for livestock in NS. There are guidelines and bare minimums that are suggested, but there are no laws protecting them from cruelty. In fact, the SPCA no longer investigates equine abuse or neglect complaints.

     The closest thing to protection these horses have is the Code from the National Farm Council of Canada. This form, linked below, contains guidelines and rules for the treatment and handling of horses. These guidelines, however, are not laws and Breighmara's blatant violations of them are not resulting in any charges or removal of the animals from the property.

    Per the NS Animal Welfare Act, Breighmara is also in violation:PREVENTION OF CRUELTY TO ANIMALS
21 (1) No person shall cause an animal to be in distress.
(2) No owner of an animal or person in charge of an animal shall permit the animal to be in distress.
(3) For the purpose of subsection (2), the owner of an animal or the person in charge of an animal does not permit the animal to be in distress if the owner or person in charge takes immediate appropriate steps to relieve the distress.
(4) Subsections (1) and (2) do not apply if the distress, pain, suffering or injury results from an activity carried on in the practise of veterinary medicine, or in accordance with reasonable and generally accepted practices of animal management, husbandry or slaughter or an activity exempted by the regulations.
(5) Subsection (3) does not apply if the owner of an animal or the person in charge of an animal has demonstrated a pattern of causing or permitting any animal to be in distress.

     This needs to change. What happens if these rules aren't enforced? Nothing. This needs to change. What happens if horses are being starved, neglected, and abused? Nothing. This needs to change. The voices who've signed this petition are speaking for those who can't, for those who's deaths and ravaged bodies speak volumes, yet have been ignored. Humans have domesticated and taken responsibility for these animals. We can't leave them in a wooden box with no food or water. Horses in Nova Scotia need protection, they need legislation, they need laws.

http://www.nfacc.ca/pdfs/codes/equine_code_of_practice.pdf

Recent signatures

    News

    1. Nova Scotia Needs Equine Protection!

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you as always for the continued support in our efforts to get legislation protecting horses, here's a link to a brand new Facebook cage dedicated to this cause, please join and share!
      https://www.facebook.com/pages/Nova-Scotia-Needs-Equine-Protection/714989195186168

      Nova Scotia Needs Equine Protection

      Nova Scotia Needs Equine Protection. 142 likes. We are a group of dedicated horse lovers who have seen many instances of horses being neglected or abused and been unable to take action because there is no proper legislation enabling their protection.

    2. Please speak!

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer

      To those of you signing this petition who have seen the devastating condition of the animals at Breighmara, we urge you to come forward and share your stories. We understand many of you are afraid of possible retaliation from the barn owner, but I can assure you to this date, we have received none. We are looking for stories to post on this petition so everyone can hear for themselves the true reasons of why these laws are needed. You cannot demand change and be silent. You cannot call for rights from afar. Those of you who brought this issue to light need to come forward, either anonymously or named. The world needs to know the horrors continue and without you, there will be no change.

      Province to strengthen animal cruelty regulations

      HALIFAX - Nova Scotia's agriculture minister wants to make sure there are no more cases like Buddy, a dog that had to be euthanized late last week after allegedly spending several years tethered outside a Joggins home.

    3. Dogs are getting upgrade protection... why aren't horses?

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer
      Province to strengthen animal cruelty regulations

      HALIFAX - Nova Scotia's agriculture minister wants to make sure there are no more cases like Buddy, a dog that had to be euthanized late last week after allegedly spending several years tethered outside a Joggins home.

    4. Animal Protections Laws to change for dogs

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer

      While those of us involved in the Breighmara campaign are thrilled to hear anti-tethering laws are finally coming and less dogs will be left in the cold this winter, we are saddened that this story received such quick response from Keith Colwell, while our plight continues to be ingored. An update for you, Mr. Colwell has responded to a few of the emails he's received concerning the horses at Breighmara. The email assured that changes were being made and the horses would benefit. It wasn't until we started sharing this email that we realized he's sent all of us the same, generic one. I am also saddened to say that, although several horses were removed from Breighmara, those remaining are still in a dire situation and we fear they may not all make it through winter. The horses who were removed from Breighmara were either boarders, or sold by the farm owner.

    5. Reached 10,000 signatures
    6. Article from RateMyHorse

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer
      Crisis at Canadian Stable Leads to Investigation

      by RMHP Staff "I've never seen anything that awful in my life. It was horrific. I've had nightmares, and I still see him when I close my eyes." Veronica Larson found the chestnut gelding named Douglas dead in his stall around noon on November 27.

    7. Reached 9,000 signatures
    8. CTV News clip and article

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer
      Online petition calls for tougher regulation of N.S. horse stables

      Some Nova Scotia horse owners have started a petition calling for the tougher regulation of horse stables. Horse owner Carlene Walsh says General, her friendly, high-spirited gelding, is in good shape now. But she says he rapidly lost weight during a five-month stay at Breighmara Stables at Black Point, N.S.

    9. 4500!

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer

      Amazing, over 4500 supporters! Thank you all for your continued support in our drive for better equine laws. Your signatures are so appreciated and although CTV decided not to air our story, your voices are making ripples and government officials in NS and Canada are taking notice. Please continue to share this petition and know that the Breighmara horses are just one example of why these laws need to (and will one day) change. Thank you again for your support!

    10. Reached 4,000 signatures
    11. 1000!

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer

      WOW. Over 1000 signatures! Thank you everyone!

    12. Reached 1,000 signatures
    13. 250!

      Ariel Mactavish
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you so much to all of you for signing so quickly! This story will be featured on CTV Atlantic News tonight at 6pm Atlantic time.

    14. Reached 250 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • gabrielle ravenda CALGARY, CANADA
      • 2 days ago

      Shameful and disgusting, Nova Scotia needs to ensure that all equine facilities are feeding and caring for their horses properly, this is completely unacceptable. The people who have done this should be put in a jail cell for a few weeks without food and see how they like it.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Sherri Slate HALIFAX, CANADA
      • about 1 month ago

      Who could look at these picture and not be disturbed! End the abuse

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Carol Bradbrook TASMANIA, AUSTRALIA
      • 2 months ago

      This is very important to me and should be important to Mr Keith Colwell too, these are living breathing animals and deserve to be treated with the respect they deserve.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Lynn Triger TORONTO, CANADA
      • 4 months ago

      this is a disgrace!! something needs to be done and the person running this "dive" held responsible for their actions!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Birgit Heine HOF, GERMANY
      • 4 months ago

      MIR KOMMEN DIE TRÄNEN, gottlos und teuflisch, so wunderbare Tiere zu quälen, harte Strafen müssen her.....

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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