Animals’ Angels FOIA report explodes myth on horse slaughter transport cruelty

Animals’ Angel’s most recent Freedom of Information Act report exposes multiple barbaric cruelties inflicted on slaughter horses.

Here is a portion of what they learned:

In a windfall of information, Animals’ Angels recently received over a thousand pages of documentation confirming violations and horrific treatment of horses transported to the Cavel slaughter plant in DeKalb, IL. Almost 1,100 photographs were provided along with written documentation describing the extent of violations, injuries, and penalties. The information was provided after submitting a Freedom of Information Act request to the USDA on July 28, 2012.

Documented in the information Animals’ Angels received were well over 100 incidents; each individual case detailing a multitude of violations involving the transport of horses for slaughter to the Illinois plant from 2004 to 2007.

Trailered Slaughter Horse. Google image.
A horse peers from the transport vehicle which will send her to a horrifying death in a slaughterhouse, if she survives the cruelties of the trip. Google image.

We draw your attention in particular to this:

Some would still like you to believe that the conditions for transporting horses to slaughter in the US would be better than crossing our borders to Mexico or Canada. This evidence, once again, unmistakably proves otherwise. The photos we received at Animals’ Angels highlight how in recent history horses suffered intense pain, injury, and intolerable conditions — all for slaughter within our very own country.

We continually argue this very point. Animals’ Angels unquestionably document it.

Read full Animals’ Angels report. Warning: Graphic Content.


Eating horses a solution to neglect and cruelty? We can answer that.; Tuesday’s Horse; July 20, 2012.

7 thoughts on “Animals’ Angels FOIA report explodes myth on horse slaughter transport cruelty”

  1. Read http:// news release today Jan 23, 2013 Ontario horse racing will only continue with transitional funding for industry based on providing animal welfare supports. Of course, horse racing and breeding is profit based but training day rates alone at a track like Woodbine are approx. $100/day per horse. The allowed tax write offs haven’t exactly always been generous, that’s for sure. The few Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society sales that I’ve been to definitely bothered me to watch weanlings and other horses go through auction unsold at year end. Definitely, without a doubt Canada must enforce breeding limits, with huge high priced penalties for the puppymillers…………


    1. 🐴🐴Jo, Thx 4 your info. and comment. Glad to hear that the Ontario government is putting their foot (hoof) down finally. I have been in the industry all my life and have worked in many different capacities all over North America. I can say that Ontario is the only racing jurisdiction in North America that gets 1% of wagering directly to ReRun based at the Woodbine racetrack. That said, they are overwhelmed with horses right now just based in sheer numbers. As I pointed out in my previous comment there is simply too many horses vs, homes available. After all, 50,000 foals and counting. Take for example Frank Stronach of Adena Springs. He reportedly owns 600 thoroughbreds, stallions, broodmares, horses in training, weanlings, and much more on their way. Now although he is well financed, the horses have great homes, I can’t help but ask: is this a classic case of hoarding covered up by money? In recent years, we have found STAKE horses that have made $250,000 or more in a killing pen. Now I know that all horses lives are equal despite what money they have made, but these money makers worked for and deserves a retirement not a trip to the slaughterhouse. Just a few years ago the horse that won the Queens Plate was found in a killing pen. The horse was owned by the “Sapatas,” and trained by Josie Carroll. The Sapatas are multi-millionaires from Calgary. Hardly people who can’t afford to take care if a horse especially one that won million dollars. The stories are countless which brings me to your comment. I agree 100% that there should be governmental control limiting the number of foals bred. STOP or reduce the breeding. It is a health and safety issue. Off topin for a moment: if the public only knew what went in at Woodbine while they were getting 350 million dollars if taxpayer subsidies? This deal was cut between Wilmott and his best buddy Harris (then conservative leader). It continued to get covered up through Hudak ambitious Conservative leader. He defends the money – wonder why? Maybe those alleged kickbacks you will sorely miss. Oh well. Anyways, when the purse money went up they blocked out small trainers like me and hundreds if others who supported the track for years. The small group that controlled the money controlled the stalls at Woodbine and controlled the races. 90% of stalls were allocated to just 10 trainers who manipulated the results ifceverybrace at Wiidbine while bilking the wagering public. To this day, we are scared to speak out about it because we were warned of cement shoes in the Niagara River scenario. This is the group that is breeding hundreds of foals thinking that the cash cow would never end. Much of the 350 million over the years is unaccounted for. The word “transparency” never entered Woodbine culture. So now these people are stuck with a bunch of foals that they can’t pay for. Money and greed at its worst with the racehorses paying the ultimate price. Now these people headed by Sue Leslie the Woodbine “queen, ” issued statements that foals would be killed on the farm by the breeder because of money getting cut-off. How nice of them? Their sense of entitlement to taxpayer subsidies us beyond belief, but they have been getting away with it for so long that it doesn’t occur to them. So now we have a bunch if unwanted horses that they can’t financially support. Nobody asked them to breed. In fact, there should be a law to stop all breeding or greatly restrict it. A recent study released by Angels for Animals (I think) exposed the horror of the killing pens, the transportation to the slaughter house, and the killing floor itself. No horse should end it’s life this way & the breeders should be held financially responsible.


      1. I hear ya Gina! Feel free to rant all U want.
        I do it myself all the time becuz of the insane cruelty that horses endure due to human $ greed $
        Email if U want or keep posting so public reads what we already know


      2. Wow Gina, this is pathetic! However your comment should be published in EVERY newspaper, under a different name of course? YIKES


  2. Since all of these TB’s are considered part of a business they are also a tax write off. So no matter how many are born the breeders lose very little . If they break down in training and die before they can win anything its still a write off.


  3. As thoroughbred breeding season is upon us there will be approximately 50,000 foals born this year for the sole purpose of racing and filling the wagering cofers. Many of these foals will be eventually dumped in killing pens destined for slaughter when they are no longer profitable. Some of these racehorses has made their owners thousands of dollars. The racing industry has been addressing the issue, but the impact is minimal directly due to lack of funding. There are many registered and reputable racehorse rehoming groups that can’t rescue due to lack of funding. The Breeders Cup at Santa Anita California 2012 made 47 million in just 2 days! Not one dime (that I’m aware of) went DIRECTLY to thoroughbred rescue groups. The figures are astounding. Yet, the people who control the wagering refuse my idea: JUST 1% of wagering directly to TB horse rehoming groups. Every time you attend a racetrack or wager on a racehorse you are supporting the inevitable trip to the slaughterhouse.


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