Before sharing your comments today, I wanted to welcome those new blog subscribers who joined during last week’s Humane Domain gift certificate giveaway. Congratulations to our three winners, who have been notified by email. For those of you who didn’t win but perhaps saw something you’d like to purchase at Humane Domain, I have a special discount code to offer exclusively to blog readers. Now through Nov. 7, if you enter the code 3HY8VP at checkout, you will save 15 percent on your order.
Now turning to your thoughts. My recent blog about the movie “Secretariat” prompted many of you to write. A Triple Crown winner and legend in horse racing, Secretariat spent many years as a sire following his success on the racetrack. But too many race horses don’t ever get a chance at retirement or a second career, instead being sold and slaughtered for human consumption abroad—a plight you are also clearly concerned about.
We loved this film! Great horse, great story. Fine job by Diane Lane. We also mourn the fate of horses who have provided their owners with money through winning races and then are discarded without compassion or love. It's really disgusting and horrible! —Minelle and Jon Paloff
Thank you for keeping the issue of horse slaughter at the forefront. To repay our faithful partners in such a way is unforgivable. Much of human civilization was built from the backs of the horse. Horse slaughter is a process that goes very wrong far too often, causing immense pain and suffering. There are many other options for unwanted horses that need to be made more readily available. —Leah Dyck
I was very upset to learn that many horses are sent to slaughter when they no longer can make money for their owners. We treat these poor creatures like land or material goods, and not like the wonderful creatures they are. —Ranay Peck
A timely and much needed blog on Thoroughbred horse industry practices in America. At Heaven Can Wait Equine Sanctuary for Healing and Learning in San Miguel, Calif. we home Pair O' Docs, a grandson of Secretariat who looks just like his granddad except for the white blaze. After a less than stellar racing career, Pair O' Docs was used as a pack horse in the mountains, fell down a cliff, landed in a tree, had to wait for the tree to break before he could be freed, and was pretty much a psych case for riding after that. He was fortunate to find his way to our forever sanctuary several years ago and has been a character and an ambassador for horse rescue ever since. The Thoroughbred racing industry has to cut down on the breeding of tens of thousands of these animals annually. These aren't machines; they're living, thinking beings who feel the same things we do. —Ramey Zamora
Beautifully written Wayne… The public needs to know the truth about the Thoroughbred industry. I worked on the racetracks in Ocala, Fla. as a vet assistant and it is shocking what these horses are put through as well as the fate they so commonly end up with. I hope the appropriate authorities make the much needed changes to ensure the health and well being of these magnificent creatures. —Jennifer McLean
My heart broke when I was seeing the cruel slaughter of horses in Canada. I was unable to see anymore. To see a horse slaughtered is bad enough but to see the horse mistreated in the process is unbearable. These horses have earned a pleasant retirement for their faithful service and could give enjoyment to those people who truly value them. … Horses for consumption? Let those so-called connoisseurs of horse meat witness horse slaughter and mistreatment. Maybe they would change their minds. —Kitty, Minnesota
Let's just do all these beautiful animals a favor and try to educate the public about the dangers horses face through horse racing. They begin training while their skeletal systems are still developing. They're prone to injury. They're whipped. Horses are amazing animals, and even "winners" are frequently sold for butchering.—Carrie
I live just two miles from Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby. … After what happened to Barbaro, I refuse to watch the Derby. The horses are bred for speed, not longevity. That is just not right. —Angela West