There is an element of individuals among horse owners who have caused irreparable damage to the overall perception of the horse industry who think nothing of simply abandoning horses and other animals. Sure, we can easily blame the poor economy and rising costs of feed and hay for some of the neglect and shameful abuse. Let’s face it, though. There are numerous ways to get help in these dire times in order to avoid abandonment and starvation of horses.
Without a doubt, most horse owners are attentive, caring and conscientious. It’s the balance of those that simply abandon, starve or abuse their horses in other ways. It has become difficult for shelters to keep up with the numbers. Worse, the proponents of horse slaughter point to these neglected horses as reasons to slaughter them and any others they can condemn to this fate.
Currently, there are two bills being considered in the Oklahoma legislature. These could pave the way for the legalization of horse slaughter in Oklahoma. According to Rep. Skye McNiel, horse slaughter provides “a humane solution to the problem of equine overpopulation.”
"The horse is a majestic, wonderful animal that is a great companion animal. We just have an overpopulation of them right now, and, unfortunately, there's just no end for them. They just end up getting starved and abused," said McNiel, R-Bristow, who authored one of the slaughter bills.
Despite being a lifelong horsewoman, McNiel has taken this sad position. Her thinking signifies the erroneous impression that slaughter is an ethical method of ridding horse overpopulation.
Says McNiel, “I am seeing old horses abandoned on the roads near her home because owners can no longer care for them.”
She holds this opinion. However, not all horse lovers stand in favor of this “solution” legislation.
State Director of the Humane Society of the United States, Cynthia Armstrong, says, “The process of slaughter is far from a humane death!”
Armstrong instead recommends retirement, sale, or euthanasia as possible and practical alternatives for Oklahoma’s unwanted horse population.
Source: Paulick Report
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