Wild horses need our voices; Cloud call to action

Galloping wild horse herd. (Stock Photo)

URGENT CALL TO ACTION

Please join The Cloud Foundation with us. Call your U.S. Senators using the following script. If no one answers, please leave a voicemail.

Script:

1. Hello, my name is ____________ and I live in _______________. My phone # is ______________. (Give all that info upfront for simplicity)

2. I am asking Senator _____________ to vote AGAINST funding the Dept. of Interior Appropriations Bill, Fiscal Year 2020, which includes the Livestock Lobby/ASPCA/HSUS plan to remove over 100,000 wild horses and burros from public lands in the next 10 yrs. Our wild herds are protected by federal law and should be managed ON THE RANGE, not warehoused at tax-payer expense.

3. Again my name is ______________________, from ____(town)______. Thank you for the opportunity to weigh in.

 *  *  *  *

Find your Senator’s phone number here: https://www.senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm

Not sure who your senators are? Find here: https://whoismyrepresentative.com

BACKGROUND

The disastrous “management” plan that calls for the removal of over 100,000 wild horses and burros from the range over the next decade will soon be up for Senate approval in the Fiscal Year 2020 Interior spending bill.

If you’re unfamiliar with the plan, The Cloud Foundation responded in depth to the proposing organizations. Read it here.

Racing — A sport that lost track of its main asset

Hello horse lovers and welcome.

An article entitled, “A sport that lost track of its main asset,” by Raj Tawney and published by Newsday caught our imagination. It is beautifully written and states the obvious, unless you work in or gamble on horse racing.

We excerpt it below. Quotation Mark Left (Arimo Gray)

.  .  .  . organized racing didn’t begin until after the Civil War in 1868, when The American Stud Book was founded, followed by the formation of The Jockey Club in New York in 1894.

By the turn of the century, more than 300 racetracks existed in the United States as the focus became less about prestige and more about legalized gambling. All but a few annual races, including the Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes, held on to sporting traditions. Horses were now treated as commodities instead of elite athletes. If and when they no longer produced results, they were sent to “the glue factory.”

Horse racing may have historical origins but the sport has lost sight of its most important contributor: the horse itself. If this precious animal is treated only as a disposable product — a means to a dividend — how is this “sport” any different from the meat industry?

Quotation Mark Right Arimo Gray

Read full article here »

By the way, in the same article, PETA is quoted that “the Thoroughbred-racing industry sends an estimated 10,000 horses to slaughter annually.” Add to that the ones they kill on the racetrack, and you see what a chillingly deadly industry it is.

Why would anyone with half a heart or an ounce of integrity want to “save” horseracing? Or gamble on it?

That last quote by the article’s writer is a showstopper — how is this “sport” any different from the meat industry?

Answers anyone?

BLM kills 14 wild horses during Triple B Roundup

Grey Mustang Stallion by Randy Harris. See randyharrisphoto.com.

Federal land managers say 14 wild horses were euthanized during a roundup in northeastern Nevada.

The roundup at the Triple B complex north of Ely gathered more than 800 horses to be removed and shipped to holding facilities.

The Bureau of Land Management says the roundups are necessary because there are more horses than the land can sustain.

Source: Nevada Public Radio »

This is not so. There are not more horses than the land can sustain. Read on.

FEDERAL LANDS — A Perspective

The federal government owns roughly 640 million acres, about 28% of the 2.27 billion acres of land in the United States.

Four major federal land management agencies administer 610.1 million acres of this land . They are the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS), and National Park Service (NPS) in the Department of the Interior (DOI) and the Forest Service (FS) in the Department of Agriculture.

In addition, the Department of Defense (excluding the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers) administers 11.4 million acres in the United States , consisting of military bases, training ranges, and more. Numerous other agencies administer the remaining federal acreage.

The BLM manages 248.3 million acres of public land and administers about 700 million acres of federal subsurface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM has a multiple-use, sustained-yield mandate that supports a variety of activities and programs, as does the FS, which currently manages 192.9 million acres.

Most FS lands are designated national forests. Wildfire protection is increasingly important for both agencies.

The FWS manages 89.1 million acres of the U.S. total, primarily to conserve and protect animals and plants. The National Wildlife Refuge System includes wildlife refuges, waterfowl production areas, and wildlife coordination units.

In 2015, the NPS managed 79.8 million acres in 408 diverse units to conserve lands and resources and make them available for public use. Activities that harvest or remove resources from NPS lands generally are prohibited.

Numerous issues affecting federal land management are continuously before Congress.

These issues include the extent of federal ownership and whether to decrease, maintain, or increase the amount of federal holdings; the condition of currently owned federal infrastructure and lands and the priority of their maintenance versus new acquisitions; and the optimal balance between land use and protection, and whether federal lands should be managed primarily to benefit the nation as a whole or to benefit the localities and states.

WE’VE BEEN THERE

Various individuals who work and volunteer for The Fund for Horses (The Horse Fund) have viewed great pieces of public lands managed by the BLM over the course of 15 years. They viewed these public lands by both helicopter and light plane.

It is virtually impossible to get across to anyone who have not seen the vastness of these areas just how immense federal lands are.

You can fly for large chunks of time — sometimes hours — and see absolutely nothing but land as far in any direction as your eye will take you.

A huge chunk of federal lands managed by the BLM are where our wild horses and burros roam.

ROOM FOR OUR WILD ONES

How is it possible there is room for cattle ranchers, miners, drillers, and all the rest, yet not space for our wild horses and burros, somewhere — no matter how remote? We do not care.

Our wild horses and burros would acclimate themselves. It may be unsettling at first. However they would survive.

It would be much better for our wild horses and burros to remain free roaming, even if it meant being captured and re-released, no matter where it was, than being robbed of their precious freedoms, breaking up their bands and confining them to holding facilities often in unsafe and deplorable conditions. Certainly anything must be preferable to submitting them to a brutal and terrifying death by slaughter. Castrating their males. Yanking the ovaries out their females.

We asked BLM personnel why this was not a workable solution, one that could surely offend no one and possibly delight quite a few.

The BLM spokesperson replied that the Department of Interior would not want wild horses and burros removed from their designated, herd management areas and moved to vast open spaces where the BLM might find it difficult or impossible to track and “manage them”. That they told us would be in direct opposition to the 1971 The Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971.

Not so.

At any rate, it seems obvious to us that they could simply do fly overs (like the ones we went on) once or twice a year to see where the bands were and report on their size and condition.

Certainly this is doable and good economics. Would this not also benefit America’s public lands? Wild horses and burros actually refurbish the land, not destroy it leaving it barren the way say, cattle do.

Mostly importantly of all, this would mean no more deaths like those of the 14 murdered Triple B wild horses. At least out in the wild, our mustangs and burros have a fighting chance to survive.

HELP

At long last we finally won some introductions, and caught the ear of some valuable people at the Department of Interior. They have been much more receptive to our ideas than the BLM have been.  Please chip in with a contribution, any amount, to help keep us in nation’s capitol and active on behalf of our wild horses and burros, domestic horses, racehorses and walking horses. There’s a lot to do!

Click to Donate

Thank you for your generosity and support.

Talking points about horse slaughter

Beauty was a ‘throwaway’, a horse nobody seemed to want, slaughter bound in a feedlot. 'Well, I wanted her!' says the lady who rescued her.
Beauty was a ‘throwaway’, a horse nobody seemed to want, slaughter bound in a feedlot. ‘Well, I wanted her!’ says the lady who rescued her. A federal bill protecting U.S. horses from slaughter called the SAFE Act is currently pending. Please contact Washington today to support it.

It isn’t right to assume that everyone has heard about horse slaughter and why it exists. We have been working against it for so many years, we sometimes forget that.

So let’s look at some talking points about the slaughter of horses for human consumption, with particular ones relevant to H.R.961/S.2006 (the “SAFE Act of 2019”). There’s also a Take Action section at the end.

TALKING POINTS

General

Polls taken in 2006 and 2012 confirm that 8 out of 10 Americans are opposed to horse slaughter, regardless of gender, political affiliation, their geographic location or whether they live in urban or rural areas.

Horse slaughter is driven by a demand for horse meat by overseas consumers who consider it a delicacy. It is not a service for “unwanted” horses.

Horse slaughter creates a salvage or secondary market which encourages indiscriminate breeding and neglect by providing a “dumping ground” for unscrupulous individuals.

Horses purchased for slaughter are not old, unhealthy or “unwanted” and could continue to be productive.

Predictably “kill buyers” who make a living supplying horses to slaughter plants are interested in buying the healthiest horses for the production of horse meat.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Guidelines for Handling and Transporting Equines to Slaughter 92.3% of horses arriving at slaughter plants in the U.S. were deemed to be in “good” condition.

Another byproduct of horse slaughter is horse theft. Horse slaughter plants are aware that horses are stolen to be brought to their facilities but they simply do not care.

When California banned horse slaughter in 1998, horse theft fell by 39.5%. In the years that followed, the State saw the decrease in horse theft rise to 88%.

H.R.961 and S.2006

Although horses are not currently slaughtered on U.S. soil due to a recurring federal ban in the annual spending bill for inspections required by law to export their meat, horses are bought and transported across U.S. borders to Mexico and Canada to be slaughtered for human consumption.

Horse slaughter plants in Mexico and Canada see horses as “meat on the hoof” and could care less about their history, medical or otherwise, or how they got there.

Horses receive multiple medications such as steroids, dewormers and ointments throughout their lives barring their meat from entering the human food chain.

Phenylbutazone (“Bute”) — commonly known as the horse “aspirin” and is as common to horses as human aspirin is to humans — is a known carcinogen and can cause aplastic anemia in humans.

Horses treated with Phenylbutazone bars them from entering the human food chain.

Dr. Nicholas Dodman, in a paper entitled “Association of phenylbutazone usage with horses bought for slaughter: a public health risk”, states:

The permissive allowance of such horsemeat used for human consumption poses a serious public health risk.

See also Do Not Use in Horses Intended for Human Consumption: Horse Meat and Its Public Health Danger, by Jessica Rose Sutcliffe.

Kill buyers for the horse meat industry ignore a slaughter horse’s medication history and so do the slaughterhouses — especially concerning Bute — or 8 out of 10 horses who arrive there from the U.S. would be turned away.

TAKE ACTION

H.R.961 / S.2006 (the “SAFE Act of 2019”) is a bipartisan measure that would outlaw horse slaughter operations in the U.S. and end the current export of American horses for slaughter.

Contact your U.S. Representative (H.R.961) and both U.S. Senators (S.2006) in Washington and ask them to cosponsor the SAFE Act of 2019.

If you can’t do it right now, please make a note to yourself, or put it on your “to do” list. It is critical for the safety and welfare of our horses that we all take part. Thank you!

Go here to take action »