Swasey Herd Roundup 2013 Utah. The Cloud Foundation image.

Anatomy of a Roundup, Swasey 2013, Cloud Foundation Video

The Cloud Foundation


Despite 16 inches of snow 48 hours before the roundup began, the BLM was committed to starting on schedule. As snowplows opened dirt roads closed by deep drifts, I spoke with the BLM’s Contracting Officer’s Representative (COR) who cited “contractor availability” as the reason for scheduling the first ever winter roundup of the Swasey.

It was also the stated reason for proceeding with the operation as scheduled despite unfavorable conditions. What about the wild horses, I thought? Why isn’t their welfare the most important consideration?

The Cloud Foundation Video Report

Kathrens reports on February 14, 2013, a bay colt was unnecessarily separated from his mother. She states:

I was distracted watching the wranglers separate a cremello foal from the grey mare’s family. I didn’t notice that the bay colt’s family had been loaded into the front compartment of a trailer. Then they loaded more adult horses into the second compartment.

Instead of putting the bay colt in the back compartment so he could ride safely with his parents, they loaded three adults from another band in back. The colt called and called, and his mother answered, but the trailer pulled away without him. The colt kept calling and circled the pen, looking for a way out. He charged the fence, launched his body in the air, but fell backwards, failing to clear the six-foot barrier.

He called again and I could hear his mother answer as the trailer drove away. I agonized with the foal as he continued to whinny for his family. What incredible cruelty, I thought. In an instant his life changed forever.

7 thoughts on “Anatomy of a Roundup, Swasey 2013, Cloud Foundation Video”

  1. Hi Vivian,

    Thank you. I have actually read that part of your web site and I was remiss for not given credit where credit is due. In fact, it was that vegan credo you have adopted that made me follow your site in the first place, I apologize for not taking a pause before posting my first comment “as is”,

    The mixed message for me is that so many times I see posts here where it seems like the Int’l Fund for Horses/ Tuesday’s Horse is eager to reform a symptom, but not equally ready to tackle the cause. It can even seem to promote the use of horses. (For example, why highlight Jennifer Lawrence as was done recently? I saw nothing in that story that was relief for horses.) Your Advocate from Your Plate campaign says otherwise – hence my confusion.

    Well, I understand that one can never be all things for all people, so I’ll continue to appreciate the news items and stories you bring to our attention, and take action accordingly from my abolitionist point of view ( e.g. not to fight for the end of drugs in racing, but to abolish racing and, for that matter, any other equestrian sport, work and entertainment).

    I’m sorry that my commentary perhaps took things off track from the wild horse round-up story of this post, which is truly a horrifying example of what people are doing wrong, and maybe better said – the point people are missing.

    I’ll be sure to investigate your “about” pages again to get to know your organization better.



    1. Drugs in horse racing is a good example. We use the drugs in horse racing as a way to bring an end to horse racing because we know they have no intention of getting rid of them, and expose this hypocrisy. This turns people off of horse racing, and the more we are able to do this the more it hastens its end. We are also working behind the scenes in other ways as well.

      In all my years of advocating for animals I have seen very few uses actually abolished — greyhound racing being one of them — so decided that we would trying doing it by subtle rather than confrontational means.

      I am not worried about admitting this publicly because animal abusers are so arrogant they think we have no chance of being successful.

      Our subtle approach of course affects fundraising because we cannot always explain what we are doing and how we are doing it. People must take it on trust on many occasions.

      Some of our “popular” posts — such as highlighting the Budweiser commercial — bring people to our site where they see our other messages. Perhaps not admirable, but not all of what we do is apparent.

      If I could redesign the world, animals would not be used for anything. And it seems to be worse than ever. Or maybe because of our failure to abolish animal abuse, more and more of it is coming out of the shadows. I can barely watch television without feeling nauseous at all the egregious cruelties that masquerade as entertainment that people seem to be gobbling up. A&E for one should be boycotted. Look at their schedule sometime.


  2. It’s a Holocaust. And I surely hope that everyone who is horrified by it, not only speaks up but, also does not consume or use the cattle and sheep products – or any other domesticated animal or venture that demands use of the public lands for private enterprise and recreation at the expense of nature and every beings rightful place on earth.

    Then take that a step further and do not sustain yourself by animal agriculture in any form.

    And then take another step and do not condone the use of animals at all!

    Do no harm – in every aspect of your life. This web site sends mixed messages about use of horses and often supports the overall insane paradigm of animal use by humans by applauding horse uses that are not obviously tragic to the dulled senses of our corrupt society.

    Nearly every domestic horse is subjected to separation from his family and forced to live with strangers (other horses also separated from their families.). He is bought and sold like a slave and his life value is only as good as long as the balance sheet is in the black.

    Don’t compromise the cause of freedom by using a sliding scale of cruelty and torture. Stand up as an abolitionist not a welfarist who puts the human monetary system and false sense that materialism is good idea and the only way humanity can survive.

    Clearly, it is the opposite.



  3. Cruelty beyond comprehension !!!! It is one thing if someone is ignorant to what we all know , but to do this to the Horses knowing is unforgivable !!!!!!!


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