Kill buyers still making a killing selling horses to be killed for their meat

Photograph: Denis Doyle/Getty Images.

MARCH AGAINST HORSE SLAUGHTER — No horses have been legally slaughtered for human consumption in the US since 2007, when the last operating horse slaughterhouse in Illinois was closed down.

In 2017, kill buyers are still making a killing.

Numbers vary, but the general consensus is that approximately 130,000 US horses are slaughtered annually across its borders. It is the job of the kill buyer acting on behalf of these slaughterhouses to supply those numbers. Often this is done at livestock auctions. But they also prey on unsuspecting horse owners and many are also known horse thieves.

Unless something drastically changes, those numbers look to stay the same.

The number of US horses slaughtered may suffer a hiccup or two in the near future.

The new EU mandate of a six month waiting period for US horses crossing the border into Canada before they can be slaughtered for human consumption should diminish the numbers killed when it starts on March 31.

However, we know from previous experience with the Canadian EID — a passport of sorts listing all the medications a horse received in his lifetime but was constantly forged — that kill buyers and horse dealers are very adept at circumventing the law.

And who’s to enforce it?

Horses before the auction at Shipshewana. These were racing, riding, and show horses. But the slaughterhouse buyers were there to bid on the least expensive horses. Source: Animal Angels.
Horses before the auction at Shipshewana. These were racing, riding, and show horses. But the slaughterhouse buyers were there to bid on the least expensive horses. Source: Animal Angels.

In the meantime, our sources tell us that slaughterers in Mexico are scrambling to convert existing facilities and expand others in anticipation of the new EU restrictions concerning Canada when thousands of slaughter horses may be redirected to Mexico.

If thousands more slaughter horses are indeed sent instead to Mexico, a side effect of this will likely be horses turned back at the border.

Horses bound for slaughter and turned back at the Mexican border are sometimes cruelly abandoned after they have already made a long, horrifying journey in all temperatures without food and water, many of them injured, and some of them pregnant and mares with foals.

Kill buyers have been known to tell the transporters to get rid of them because they do not want the expense of returning the horses to the feedlot when most probably wouldn’t survive the return trip anyway. So they are turned loose.

Horses turned loose like this have been rescued when known about but most die a long, agonizing death, as the numerous carcasses that have been found tell us.

There are several kill buyer lists on the internet. If you learn of any, please report them to us anyone on the list below. But do not approach them. They can be very dangerous people.

It is amazing how much these people look like the ruthless killers they are; like serial killers. Very creepy.


 Killer Buyers Exposed on Facebook »

Kill Buyers and Horse Dealers in the USA — Equine Rescue Network »

 Known Killer Buyer List — Mary Nash’s Horsemeat Website »

 Kill Buyers of Horses United States — My Horse Forum »


See Animals’ Angels page on Horse Slaughter. Contains video footage. Viewer discretion advised.  »


See Finding a Home for Your Horse »

See Insuring Your Horse for a Humane End »


See Mexican Horse Slaughterhouses | On the Road In Mexico

Slaughterbound horses. Photograph: Denis Doyle/Getty Images

Why does horse slaughter exist and what are we doing about it?

Horse Meat. Reuters. Via Fox News.

MARCH AGAINST HORSE SLAUGHTER — Why does horse slaughter exist?

Horse slaughter exists because of the demand for horsemeat.

It is important that we understand this fact — horse slaughter is driven by the consumer.

Eliminate the consumption of horse meat and you eliminate horse slaughter.

The fact that horse slaughter is consumer driven is the reason why the health, safety and welfare of the horse has rarely been an effective argument against horse slaughter. People who eat meat either do not care or choose to ignore what has to take place to deliver it to their plates.

It may take generations for humans to completely lose their appetite for horsemeat, so we must seek other means to stop the slaughter of horses.

What are we doing about it?

One route has been the ongoing attempt since 2001 to get a national law enacted banning the slaughter and export of horses for slaughter. [1]

Attempting to ban horse slaughter at the Federal level has been and continues to be a big fail.

At the moment the only successful legislative provision to date at the federal level has been the annual defunding of USDA inspections necessary to export horsemeat.

Defunding USDA horsemeat inspections prohibits the establishment of horse processing plants in the US, because no federal horsemeat inspections can take place.

However, there is a tragic loophole. The defunding provision does not stop the export of US horses to slaughter.

It is also less than reassuring that the horsemeat inspection defunding provision must be gotten into the Agriculture Budget Bill every year. This has failed to happen.

We saw the impact when the defunding of horsemeat inspections was not renewed in 2011. [2]

While the Obama Administration was often insensitive to horse protection issues domestic and in the wild, it may be even more difficult to get the defunding provision approved when it comes up again under the current Administration.

The current federal spending bill runs from October 1, 2016 to September 30, 2017.

This is why we are working at the State level and will continue to do so by targeting key States to not only ban horse slaughter but will also block important horse export to slaughter routes.

We have had success at the State level against horse slaughter. Horse slaughter plants were shuttered in Texas, California and Illinois by State laws.

In the meantime, interesting events are unfolding concerning US horses sent to Canada for slaughter.

The European Union (EU) have potentially given the Canadian horse slaughter industry a black eye.

The EU have directed that as of March 31, 2017 horses arriving in Canada for the purposes of slaughter for human consumption must reside their six months prior to slaughter. [3]

This will put a big dent in the number of US horses sent to slaughter in Canada but just how effective will it be? European laws concerning the slaughter of horses have been gotten around before by simply falsifying documentation.

By the way, the new EU directive is also likely to impact the horse slaughter industry in several South American countries, where horses for slaughter may be sourced from neighbouring countries. [4]

During March Against Horse Slaughter we will arm you with information and activities to help us remove as many horses as possible from this cruel, predatory and deadly business.

Thank you for participating. Please let us have your ideas.


Horsemeat. Reuters. Via Fox News.