H.R. 961 – Drugs, racing and toxic horse meat

Backstreet Bully. Toronto Star image.
Backstreet Bully. Toronto Star image.

By VIVIAN FARRELL

H.R. 961, the “Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2019, stipulates:

“(3) equines raised in the United States are frequently treated with drugs, including phenybutazone, acepromazine, boldenone undecylenate, omeprazole, ketoprofen, xyalzine, hyaluronic acid, nitrofurazone, polysulfated glycosaminoglycan, clenbuterol, tolazoline, and ponazuril, which are not approved for use in horses intended for human consumption and equine parts are therefore unsafe within the meaning of section 512 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act;”

After looking at the drugs cited, I began to wonder how many of them are commonly used in horse racing since racehorses are given a laundry list of drugs while training and racing. Here are the drugs mentioned in H.R. 961 in order of reference. The ones with checkmarks are used in racehorses. You will be seeing a lot of checkmarks.

• phenybutazone (analygesic, painkiller) ✓

• acepromazine (tranquilizer, phenothiazine derivative, decreases dopamine levels and depresses some portions of the reticular activating system) ✓

• boldenone undecylenate (anabolic steroid) ✓

• omeprazole (treatment for ulcers) ✓

• ketoprofen (potent pain reliever, fever reducer, and anti-inflammatory medication) ✓

• xyalzine (sedative, analgesic and anesthetic) ✓

“In horses, the drug depresses the central nervous system and slows the respiratory rate; it is also a partial heart block,” Paulick Report, February 12, 2019

• hyaluronic acid (used to treat equine inflammation; helps delay onset of osteoarthritis in racehorses) ✓

• nitrofurazone (antibiotic treatment for surface bacterial infections of wounds, burns, and cutaneous ulcers for use on large animals such as horses; has been linked to cancer in humans) ✓

“Backstreet Bully was unloaded from a trailer after dawn and led by his halter into an abattoir in rural Quebec. Once owned and raced by Magna’s Frank Stronach, the chestnut thoroughbred was to be slaughtered then packaged for human food.”

SeeStar investigation: Ottawa refuses to say whether drug-tainted horse meat entered food chain”, Mar. 31, 2013, Tuesday’s Horse.

• polysulfated glycosaminoglycan, marketed as Adequan (used for the intramuscular treatment of non-infectious degenerative and/or traumatic joint dysfunction and associated lameness of the carpal and hock joints in horses) ✓

Clenbuterol. Photo: Benjamin Norman / New York Times.
PHOTO CREDIT: BENJAMIN NORMAN / NYT
A bottle of the drug Clenbuterol, also know by the brand name Ventipulmin.

• clenbuterol (a bronchodilator that is helpful for horses with heaves, an inflammatory condition that causes the airways to constrict) ✓

Banned in Quarter Horse racing in 2017; last year, the CHRB determined that “It can still be used for health reasons. However, it cannot be administered so close to a race that it can be detected in samples. [Arthur]* said the normal clearance time is three weeks to a month. See “CHRB Moves To Ban Presence Of Clenbuterol On Race Day”, Paulick Report, Oct. 26, 2018

• tolazoline (A vasodilator that apparently has direct actions on blood vessels and also increases cardiac output) ✓

• ponazuril (used for the treatment of equine protozoal myeloencephalitis (EPM), a debilitating neurological disease) — all horses

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Meat derived from horses treated with any of the drugs mentioned bars them from entering the human food chain. It is immoral and unethical to continue slaughtering American horses for human consumption, including the racehorse.

Please contact your U.S. Representative today to cosponsor H.R. 961. It will take you about 10 minutes. Go to step by step guideline »

IN MEMORY OF BACKSTREET BULLY
And Thousands Like Him

*   *   *

* California Horse Racing Board Equine Medical Director Dr. Rick Arthur, DVM

Georgia on our minds

Gorgeous Yearlings. By Frank Sorge/Arnd.nL.
Gorgeous Georgia Yearlings. By Frank Sorge/Arnd.nL.

Greetings and welcome! This is just for you Georgians.

However, if you don’t live in Georgia, you don’t need to wait until we call your State to take part. Please scroll down to the Take Action section.

Georgians, the horses need more cosponsors from your State than just one, and possibly two.

GEORGIA COSPONSORS

Here’s the drill on the last three federal horse slaughter bills to the one pending now in the 116th Congress, including cosponsors.

113th Congress (2013-14)

H.R.1094 — Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013
183 Cosponsors
Introduced by Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-PA-7)

— Cosponsors from Georgia
• Rep. Henry C. “Hank” Johnson, Jr. [D-GA-4]
• Rep. John Lewis [D-GA-5]

114th Congress — (2015-2016)

H.R.1942 — Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2015
Introduced by Rep. Frank C. Guinta [R-NH-1]
199 Cosponsors

— Cosponsors from Georgia
• Rep. Henry C. “Hank” Johnson, Jr. [D-GA-4]
• Rep. John Lewis [D-GA-5]

115th Congress — (2017-2018)

H.R.113 — Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2017
Introduced by Rep. Vern Buchanan [R-FL-16]
218 Cosponsors

— Cosponsors from Georgia
• Rep. Henry C. “Hank” Johnson, Jr. [D-GA-4]
• Rep. Sandford D. Bishop, Jr. [D-GA-2]

116th Congress — (2019-2020)

H.R.961 — Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2019
Introduced by Rep. Janice D. Schakowsky (D-IL-9)
151 Cosponsors (as of 6/17/2019)

— Cosponsors from Georgia
• Rep. Sandford D. Bishop, Jr. [D-GA-2], April 12, 2019

GEORGIA ON OUR MINDS

We’re trying to figure out why out of 14 Districts in the State of Georgia there are only at the most two cosponsors.

This is a bipartisan issue. Always has been. In other words, it is not a Democratic or Republican cause. Two of the most recent SAFE Acts were introduced by Republicans.

HORSES IN GEORGIA

The horse is important to the State of Georgia, and contributes much to the economy. The University of Georgia reports:

The Georgia equine industry is a healthy and growing segment of the state’s economy. There are more than 74,000 horses in Georgia today, and the breeding and care of these horses has an economic impact of more than $750 million dollars each year. UGA Extension provides resources to help further Georgia’s growing reputation in horse production.

While Georgia isn’t one of the top ten horse producing states in terms of sheer numbers, the quality of Georgia’s horses and horse facilities has received national recognition. Over the years, many well-established trainers have moved their operations to Georgia, taking advantage of the temperate climate.

The most common breeds include Quarter Horses, Tennessee Walkers, Paints, American Saddles and Appaloosas.

One would think that the good people of Georgia would certainly want to protect such a precious asset as the horse, and do right by them morally and physically.

The clue may be in the breeds of horses in Georgia.

Both the American Quarter Horse and the Tennessee Walking Horse are highly popular in Georgia, and typically speaking, their breeders do not generally cast a friendly eye toward the banning of horse slaughter.

However, there is also a hugely serious human element that goes beyond protecting the horses, and a highly moral one. And that is . . .

The drugs American horses are routinely given throughout their lives bar their meat from entering the human food chain, containing known, proven carcinogens deadly to human human health.

TAKE ACTION

If you are a Georgia resident, please contact your U.S. Representative. It will only take about 10 minutes. Really!

Check out our ‘get the job done in a few quick, easy steps you can do online any time day or night’ guide »

If you need to find the instruction page again, it’s the first item in the drop down box, upper right hand corner, under Action for Horses™ here on Tuesday’s Horse.

URGENT

We need 290 cosponsors to bypass the Committees this bill is in. Every single cosponsor is highly valuable.

So let’s go get us some cosponsors for H.R. 961 and our horses.

Next up, Illinois.

Thank you!

Raffle Time — Get Your Ticket Here!

Vintage Fund for Horses ball cap.
Vintage Fund for Horses ball cap from 2004.

Hello there, and welcome back.

We are running a series of posts on H.R. 961The Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2019.

The purpose of the Act is, “To prevent human health threats posed by the consumption of equines raised in the United States”.  If successful, the resulting law will remove American horse meat from the marketplace, thereby eliminating horse slaughter and protecting the consumer.

We so appreciate how hard you are working, helping the Bill acquire the 290 cosponsors needed to bypass the Committees it’s been assigned to, and onto the House floor for a vote.

But we also need “boots on the ground” this Fall in D.C. That’s where we come in.

We will be doing direct lobbying in Washington D.C. starting late August through to the end of the year as well as keeping “an eye on the enemy”.  This Bill has bipartisan support. Still, those opposed to the end of horse slaughter can get pretty rough and up to some ugly stuff.

We are partially funded, but need a push to get us across the finish line. Will you help?

Instead of asking simply for a $5 donation, we decided to hold a raffle where a ticket costs $5 and you could win something cool and fun.

Raffle prizes include equine books, dvd’s, embroidered ballcaps (like the vintage Fund 4 Horses cap, in pristine condition, pictured above), tees and other assorted goodies.

We are holding the drawing June 30th, at 6 pm EST. So get your ticket now!

Buy Your Tickets with a Donation Here — $5 Apiece

Thank you everyone.

RELATED LINKS

Take Action on H.R. 961 »

Banned Drugs in Slaughter Horses »

H.R. 961 — Colorado, Connecticut, DC and Florida

US Capitol Dome and Flag.
US Capitol Dome and Flag.

Call to Action on H.R. 961

Calling all residents of Colorado, Connecticut, DC and Florida.

Are you ready to take part on behalf of horses and help get us the necessary cosponsors to blast H.R. 961, The SAFE Act of 2019, out of Committee and onto the House floor for debate and vote?

When The SAFE Act becomes law it will totally abolish the practice of slaughtering horses for human consumption. Imagine the impact on the lives of our Quarter Horses (America’s Horse), Thoroughbreds and Wild Horses & Burros. There is so very much at stake.

Magic Number — 290

Here’s how we do it.

If we get 290 cosponsors we can use the Consensus Calendar Rule and move the Bill onto the House Floor for debate and vote.

As of this writing, H.R. 961 has 149 cosponsors.

Below are all U.S. Representatives for the States of Colorado, Connecticut and Florida and DC at Large. Those who have cosponsored are marked with a big YES.

If they have not cosponsored, you know what to do. Contact them and ask that they cosponsor H.R. 961 at their earliest opportunity.

For those new to the process, here’s a link that will take you through it right here on Tuesday’s Horse.

COLORADO

District 1 — Rep. Diana DeGette (D) — YES

District 2 — Rep. Joe Neguse (D) — YES

District 3 — Rep. Scott R. Tipton (R) — YES

District 4 — Rep. Ken Buck (R)

District 5 — Rep. Doug Lambourn (R)

District 6 — Rep. Jason Crow (D) — YES

District 7 — Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D) — YES

• CONNECTICUT (CT)

District 1 — Rep. John B. Larson (D) — YES

District 2 — Rep. Joe Courtney (D)

District 3 — Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D)

District 4 — Rep. James A. Himes (D) — YES

District 5 — Rep. Jahana Hayes (D) — YES

• DC AT LARGE

Rep. Eleanor Holmes Norton (D) — YES

• FLORIDA

District 1 — Mùatt Gaetz (R) — YES

District 2 — Neal Dunn (R)

District 3 — Ted Yoho (R)

District 4 — John Rutherford (R)

District 5 — Al Lawson (D) — YES

District 6 — Michael Waltz (R)

District 7 — Stephanie Murphy (D)

District 8 — Bill Posey (R) — YES

District 9 — Darren Soto (D) — YES

District 10 — Val Demings (D)

District 11 — Daniel Webster (R)

District 12 — Gus Bilirakis (R)

District 13 — Charlie Crist (D) — YES

District 14 — Kathy Castor (D) — YES

District 15 — Ross Spano (R)

District 16 — Vern Buchanan (R) — YES

District 17 — Greg Steube (R)

District 18 — Brian Mast (R) — YES

District 19 — Francis Rooney (R)

District 20 — Alcee Hastings (D) — YES

District 21 — Lois Frankel (D) — YES

District 22 — Ted Deutch (D)

District 23 — Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D) — YES

District 24 — Frederica Wilson (D)

District 25 — Mario Díaz-Balart (R)

District 26 — Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D) — YES

District 27 — Donna Shalala (D) — YES

View All Cosponsors of H.R. 691

https://www.congress.gov/bill/116th-congress/house-bill/961/cosponsors

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Take Action

Contact the YES’s to say thank you (believe us, they will remember); and the non YES’s to ask for their cosponsorship.

You do not need to wait for your State to be called here on Tuesday’s Horse. Take action today no matter what State you are from. Thank you!

Resources

Find your U.S. Representative at House.gov (enter zip code and click ‘Look Up’, top right hand corner of landing page) »
Directory of Representatives at House.gov »
Tips for Taking Action on H.R. 961, Tuesday’s Horse »
How a Bill Becomes Law, Tuesday’s Horse »

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