It is crucial that we end equine slaughter in the United States. Why? Here’s a few reasons-
1. It’s plain old cruel.
Imagine it. You’re taken away from your family, friends, and home. Loaded on a noisy, dark, truck and stand with dozens of other horses biting, kicking, and ramming into you that you cannot get away from for hours on end. When you’re unloaded you run into a small, overcrowded pen with no food or water for who knows how long. The ground is deep with manure. One by one the others begin to disappear. Your driven away from the herd, ran down a chute, drug into a small pen, before being shot, perhaps even multiple times. Your body is then drug to a pile of others and the next horse is driven into the rage of the gun.
2. Every horse has a purpose, slaughter is unnecessary.
Every horse is made to do something. It can be a companion, work as a therapy horse with disabled children, it can teach a child to ride, be a best friend, fly over fences, gallop over hills, swim through rivers, climb up mountains, race across the dessert, or simply even be a lawn mower or pasture ornament.
3. There are other solutions to the problem of overpopulation.
Why not donate your horse to a therapy center, sell it, give it away, put it to pasture, retire him, surrender him to a rescue center, or even put him down humanly in the comfort of his own home? Slaughter is not the answer to overpopulation. Nor is removing the unwanted horses. The answer is EDUCATING breeders before they produce more unwanted horses.
4. It’s not a hugely profitable industry.
Horse meat currently (2011) sells for around 75-80 cents per pound (US currency). That means a 1,100 lb horse brings in approximately $880. HOWEVER, like all types of meats just because the animal is 1100 lbs does not mean that’s all meat. There are bones, organs, water content, and more that need to be taken into account. So let’s split that price. That brings us to $440. Now we need to trim the fat. Let’s say it brings us to $400. What about cost of preparation, shipping, and gasoline to export it to other countries??? Maybe $150-$200? The slaughter house purchases the horse for around $75. Now were down to $75-$125 profit. That’s it! Each year approximately 25,000 horses were slaughtered in the US before it was made illegal in 2007. That means each year, providing each horse was of human consumption quality, the US would only make approximately $1,875,000-$3,125,000. Is it really worth it? The controversy, the deaths, the cruelty, and the pointed fingers?