Horse Slaughter Information

Justification for a Ban on Horse Slaughter in New Mexico and in the United States


Horse Slaughter is not needed. 

On average, less than 1% of the 9 million horses that exist in the U.S. are “surplus or unwanted.”  The “surplus” of horses created by the industry can simply be kept longer, sold or traded, retrained in new disciplines, donated to retirement and rescue facilities, or they can provide a public service such as equine therapy.  Every year over 90,000 horses die of natural causes or humane euthanasia.  These horses are rendered, composted or buried in an environmentally responsible manner.

This tiny fraction of “surplus or unwanted”  horse population can easily be managed and reabsorbed into the equine community just as it has in the past.

Sending horses to slaughter is not only inhumane, it is also disloyal.


IMMEDIATE : Support the 2014 Budget introduced that de funds USDA horse slaughter inspections.  Call your Senators and Representatives and tell them to make sure the de funding language is passed.

 Use the Appropriations Bill to make horse slaughter (domestic or wild) illegal – saving expensive legal battles at Federal and State levels.

a. Horse Slaughter cannot be accomplished within the bounds of the 1958                                 Humane Slaughter Act.

b. Horses are not raised as food animals and therefore contain drugs that                                   render them dangerous for human consumption.


ULTIMATE:  Passage of the SAFE ACT.  Complete ban on horse slaughter, ban transport of horses for slaughter, ban on import or export of horse meat.

Ban Horse Slaughter in the United States by supporting the “Safeguard American Food Exports Act of 2013,” which will Ban the slaughter of horses for human consumption, will ban the transport of horses for slaughter and will ban the export or import of horse meat for human consumption.  HR 1094 and S 541.  

Please follow the link below where you can send a letter directly to your congressmen and senators.

Protect Our Nation’s Horses and Food Safety Reputation

 Justification for a Permanent Ban on Horse Slaughter

A.  The Horse – it’s role in human history.

Civilization has been built on the back of a horse.  What other animal can be plucked from the wild to become help mate, transportation, entertainment, and human companion.  Yet horses adapt without humans and can survive and thrive in the wild on their own.  They develop strong family bonds and have a definite social structure in the wild.

The Horse is one of our oldest native species.  The Horse evolved here in the American West before migrating for 7000 years.  They returned with the Spanish, and all the settlers to come afterward.  Paleolithic artists painted images of dashing horses inside caves in France.  Ancients considered the horse an important part subject because it was so much a part of daily life.

The horse tamed this country, plowed it’s fields, built it’s roads and cities,  enabled exploration of this vast nation, built its railroads, mined its resources, transported people, fought its wars, created the nation that we know and love today.  Even in modern times the horse is used in law enforcement, border patrol, as a work mate, as a source of entertainment, as a therapy animal, as a companion, and as an athlete. We travel long distances to observe them in their natural state – wild and free

The American Wild Horse is protected by law,  it is a symbol of freedom, of what this country represents.  The 1971 Wild Free Roaming Horses and Burros Act states: That Congress finds and declares that wild free-roaming horses and burros are living symbols of the historic and pioneer spirit of the West; that they contribute to the diversity of life forms within the Nation and enrich the lives of the American people; and that these horses and burros are fast disappearing from the American scene. It is the policy of Congress that wild free-roaming horses and burros shall be protected from capture, branding, harassment, or death; and to accomplish this they are to be considered in the area where presently found, as an integral part of the natural system of the public lands.

The horse is as much a part of the American culture as humans.  We have immortalized them in our art, in literature, song, and poetry.  The Native Americans still hold them as sacred.  Their story is an integral part of our history. Horses are responsible for the progress of mankind.  They are a part of our genetic memory

Slaughter is not the just or fitting end for these magnificent and noble animals.


B.  Inhumanity of Horse Slaughter

The horse is a flight animal, a prey animal by nature with sharp instincts.  Horses are aware of pending danger from the moment they enter the slaughter pipeline and their lives become one of abuse, neglect and terror.

Horses bought at auction by “kill buyers” are crammed into trailers.  A horse instinctively struggles to escape.  Injuries occur, bones are broken, mares miscarry, their foals trampled because there is no room.  Horses are hauled for long distances without food and water in all kinds of weather.

When horses arrive at their final destination they sense the danger and are filled with terror.  They smell blood of their own kind, and try to escape even as they are forced through narrow chutes where they realize they will meet their death.  Survival instincts in a horse are strong.

Animal slaughter is controlled by the

1958 Humane Slaughter Act.

Federal Law:

Sec. 1902. Humane methods

No method of slaughtering or handling in connection with
slaughtering shall be deemed to comply with the public policy of
the United States unless it is humane. Either of the following two
methods of slaughtering and handling are hereby found to be humane:
(a) in the case of cattle, calves, horses, mules, sheep, swine,
and other livestock, all animals are rendered insensible to pain
by a single blow or gunshot or an electrical, chemical or other
means that is rapid and effective, before being shackled,
hoisted, thrown, cast, or cut; or
(b) by slaughtering in accordance with the ritual requirements
of the Jewish faith or any other religious faith that prescribes
a method of slaughter whereby the animal suffers loss of
consciousness by anemia of the brain caused by the simultaneous
and instantaneous severance of the carotid arteries with a sharp
instrument and handling in connection with such slaughtering.

 Horse slaughter is accomplished by Captive Bolt Method, whereby a pneumatically powered bolt is driven into the skull of an animal to render them unconscious.

Because the horse is a flight animal, an animal of prey it will struggle. 

You cannot restrain the head of a horse correctly to apply the captive-bolt gun apparatus to their forehead.  the gun has a pressure-release trigger and use of it on horses requires multiple shots to render the animal senseless.  some skulls from slaughtered horses recovered at rendering plants have 4 to 5, and sometimes up to 20 or more holes in them.  Bovine and equines (cattle and horses) are both supposed to be “rendered insensible with a single (1) shot” before vivisection, before they hang on the hook according to Federal Law.  A large percentage of horses (40%) regain consciousness on slaughter lines after they are hanging.  The captive-bolt is ineffective at rendering them senseless and they are routinely shot in the head multiple times before their vivisection for harvesting is complete.

 The specific fact that equines commonly have to be struck multiple times with the captive-bolt or shotgun is what makes commercial horse slaughter in the U.S. a clear violation of the Humane Slaughter Act of 1958. 

Dr. Lester Friedlander was a Chief Inspector/Trainer for the USDA when he testified before U.S. Congress concerning this.  He witnessed cattle slaughter for years at the largest plant in the country and also oversaw the cursory program the USDA was operating for horse slaughter in the U.S.  He saw that 40+% of the horses were not rendered insensible by the captive-bolt application and complained to his supervisors that the practice is a clear violation of the Humane Slaughter Act of 1958 which states the animal must be rendered senseless with ONE blow. 

 Because of the unique nature of the horse, it is impossible to humanely slaughter them in a commercial setting with machines.

The following is a statement made by Dr. Lester Friedlander, in testimony to Congress.

Affidavit to Members of Congress:

February 29, 2008

Lester Friedlander, DVM

“Distinguished Members of Congress, my name is Dr. Lester Friedlander and I am a former USDA Veterinarian. I am refuting the testimony of Dr. Bonnie Beaver, DVM, that the captive bolt is a humane procedure of euthanasia for horses. The captive bolt does not meet the humane method of slaughter, as described in the 1958 “Humane Slaughter Act.” Head restraints are not used in the slaughter of horses and therefore do not comply with the Statue. The captive bolt is used in cattle, due to the fact the cow’s brain is more anterior than the horse’s brain and the penetration of the bolt is more effective. Horses are not, and cannot be restrained, during horse slaughter. I have seen several video tapes of horse slaughter where the horses have to be struck with the captive bolt several times. No head restraints were used; to do so would cause these flight animals to break their necks. During these multiple times of striking the horses head with the captive bolt, the horses are in pain and suffering. It is important to know that the captive bolt does not kill the horse, nor was it ever intended to. The horse must be exsanguinated to be suitable for human consumption. As the captive bolt is not a proper instrument for the slaughter of equids, and these animals regain consciousness thirty seconds after being struck, they are fully aware they are vivisected. Ergo, the use of the captive bolt for equids is a violation of the Humane Slaughter Act of 1958. I ask you to support HR 503 and S 311 in the best interest of horses”

~Lester Friedlander, DVM

Sources: See Manes & Tails Organization: Use of the “Penetrating Captive Bolt” as a means of rendering equines insensible for slaughtering violates the Humane Slaughter Act of 1958

The Humane Slaughter Act:

Horse Slaughter – Its Ethical Impact and Subsequent Response of the Veterinary Profession, A White Paper, Veterinarians for Equine Welfare

Vets For Equine Welfare Videos

Equine Slaughter House Feasibility Study. Transport of horses to slaughter compounds equine suffering. See Page 31,

Information Obtained from the USDA Regarding Violations of the Transport to Slaughter Regulations See Exhibit 4 bottom web page, Animals Angels.

Commercial Transportation of Equines to Slaughter,

Animals’ Angels USA Exposes the Truth of Horse Slaughter, Blow to Swiss Horse Meat Market Expected.


C.  Health Threats related to Horse Slaughter For Human Consumption

1. Drugs used in horse meat are not safe for human consumption:

Horses are not raised as food animals and therefore are treated with chemicals, harmful to humans. Horse meat adulterated with phenylbutazone (bute) has created a massive international food scandal, according to a News Week article, entitled, What’s in Your Horse Burger?  Chemicals that Pose Serious Health Risks

Bute poses serious health hazards, according to a growing list of veterinarians as well as the authors of “Association of Phenylbutazone Usage With Horses Bought for Slaughter:  A Public-Health Risk.”

Published in Food and Chemical Toxicology, the research states that the health hazards associated with bute in horse meat aren’t dose related.

According to the study, bute causes bone-marrow depression like aplastic anemia, agranulocytosis, thrombocytopenia, leucopenia, pancytopenia, and hemolytic anemia, which are fatal in the vast majority of cases.  The elderly are more susceptible than younger adults.  The results for developing bone-marrow depression and other serious effects are heightened because humans metabolize bute into oxyphenbutazone, which also causes bone-marrow depression.

 The study also demonstrates that children are at increased risk of developing aplastic anemia from minute levels of bute and oxyphenbutazone in horse meat, presumably because their bones are still growing.  But even very low levels of bute can result in a hypersensitivity reaction in susceptible adults that’s ostly fatal.  All of these effects are considered to be  idiosyncratic, meaning it is unknown who will be afflicted.

The report goes on to say that bute is a carcinogen, can cause chromosomal alterations that lead to cancers like leukemia in humans, can result in a serum sickness-like illness resulting in “fever, fatigue, malaise, and inflammation of the kidney, swollen glands and an enlarged spleen.  A person can end up on dialysis for the rest of their life,” the authors of the peer-reviewed researce study wrote in a follow up letter to the editor.

 As the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service stated back in 2007, “phenylbutazone is considered to be one of the most toxic non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.  It is not approved for use in food animals and there are no regulatory limits, such as acceptable daily intake or safe concentrations for meat, established by the Food and Drug Administration.  Therefore, the presence of any amount of phenylbutazone in food animal tissue will be considered a violation and likely to be unsafe for human consumption.”

In a recent news release Front Range Equine Rescue and The Humane Society of the United States filed a legal petition with the New Mexico Environmental Improvement Board requesting that it adopt a reule that renders any horse “unqualified” for use as food for human consumption, because… horses are treated routinely with drugs not meant for food, ranging from vaccinations to anti-inflammatories to steroids.

These substances to which virtually all American horses have been exposed create the potential for great danger to humans if they are eaten, including cancer, life-threatening autoimmune diseases, and other illnesses of significant proportion.  The petition alleges that the only way to protect the food supply and the consuming public is for the BOARD to declare horse meat to be unqualified.


For entire article see :What’s in Your Horse Burger?  Chemicals that Pose Serious Health Risks.

Front Range Equine Rescue and The Humane Society of the United States Petition State Board to Declare Horsemeat Unfit for Human Consumption. (Breaking News from Front Range Equine Rescue.

US Boosts Horse-Meat Testing on Imports:

Horsemeat: a Product of Cruelty, Dishonesty and Drugging

 Animal Welfare Institute

Horse slaughtering legal in US, but public won’t bite, by David Arkin, Staff Writer, NBC News.

Fraud on a Massive Scale:  Europe‘s Horse Meat Scandal Keeps Growing, NBC News.

Drug Residues in American Horse Meat. Equine Welfare Alliance

Front Range Equine Rescue and Humane Society Petition to the New Mexico Environmental Improvement Board. (4-1-13).pdf?_r=

2. Horse meat contains high doses of Adrenaline and Cortisol due to slaughter process.

Another health threat posed by consumption of horse meat is the high levels of Adrenaline and Cortisol produced by horses in response to the terror induced at slaughter.  The levels of Adrenaline and Cortisol produced by the equine species are far higher than those produced in any other animal.  It is proven that adrenaline and cortisol consumption by humans causes Colorectal (as well as other forms of) Cancer.

Horse Activist, Karin Hauenstein, Statement – Endorsed by Dr. Lester Friedlander.

3.  Safety of Horse Slaughter Houses.

Horse Slaughter houses in and of themselves pose a threat to the physical     and emotional health of its workers, based on these reports from other forms of slaughter.

Since horse meat is not consumed and is dangerous for consumption it makes little sense to impose these dangers on innocent workers:

Jonathan Safran Foer, Eating Animals, New York: Little, Brown and Company (2009).


“(Slaughterhouse workers have the highest injury rate of any job—27 percent annually—and receive low pay to kill as many as 2,050 cattle a shift.)” (p. 231)

Emotional Injury and potential crime:

“TempleGrandin has argued that ordinary people can become sadistic from the dehumanizing work of constant slaughter. This is a persistent problem, she reports, that management must guard against.” (p. 231)

GAO Jan 2005 – Workplace Safety and Health Issues in the Meat and Poultry Industry. re: injuries—physical and psychological– to workers in slaughterhouses, as well as documenting the deleterious effects of slaughterhouses on co  - numbers of injuries and deaths to workers (OSHA Data and GAO Report), emotional consequences of working in a slaughter house.


4. Horse Slaughter in US poses the threat of contamination of beef and other meat.  With Sequesters, even Tom Vilsack, Secretary of Agriculture is asking Congress to look for alternatives to horse slaughter. Appendix: Secretary Tom Vilsack asks Congress for alternatives.

The issue of horse slaughter is playing out at the highest levels of government – both as a matter of policy and the actual mechanics of overseeing the industry and its effects. Presented with a half dozen applications for horse slaughter plants his agency will be called on to inspect, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said this week that there should be a “third way” to manage America’s horse population, and that we can develop a system to deal with homeless horses without sending them to slaughter.

European authorities are still trying to figure out how some parties in the supply chain swapped out beef for horse, and duped consumers. They’re also trying to determine how to maintain food safety standards by allowing trade in a class of animals not originally raised for food, and in terms of the industries from which they originate, are routinely fed and injected with drugs not fit for human consumption.

In Congress, several veteran lawmakers introduced legislation two weeks ago to ban the live export of horses for slaughter for human consumption. Meanwhile, under pressure from agriculture interests, Oklahoma is poised to repeal its longstanding horse slaughter ban. That would clear the state path for a horse slaughter plant to open, but doesn’t guarantee any final approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture on any particular plant.

The notion that the U.S. would resume horse slaughtering at a time when the global horse meat market is in turmoil raises all sorts of curious questions. Where does the financing come from? Why would anyone invest in a shadowy business enterprise like horse slaughter, with no domestic market, with congressional legislation looming to ban exports, and with the primary global market of Europe in a tail-spin over the recent horse meat scandal? It’s like investing in beach-front property right after a hurricane has slammed into the area.

The HSUS and the ASPCA have just released a poll that reveals that 66 percent of Oklahoma voters won’t support horse slaughter legislation. Yet the state legislature, goaded by the phony arguments of horse slaughter proponents that killing horses is good for the animals, seems hell-bent on the idea. Remember though, it took a ballot measure to outlaw cockfighting in the state. There were some lawmakers aligned with the cockfighting lobby who believed it was a form of economic development they didn’t want to squander. Hell, the family of the author of the horse slaughtering bill runs a major horse auction site, and she may be able to get a piece of the economic action that results if Oklahoma becomes the new hub of the American horse slaughter industry.

And why are the cattlemen so hot on horse slaughter? Yes, I understand they take a strictly utilitarian view toward animals, and would rather sell off a horse they no longer want for $200 to a killer buyer than to pay $200 to humanely dispose of the animal. But aside from that, if the U.S. has a horse meat scandal like Europe does, you can bet that beef sales will plunge here. As was the case with “downers,” sick or injured cattle they still wanted to slaughter, big beef is an industry that’s pennywise and pound foolish.

The whole thing smells like a rotting carcass. One thing you can count on is that The HSUS will not relent in our efforts to protect horses in the U.S. and throughout the world, especially from this predatory, vile slaughtering industry.

Hagen: Meat inspector furloughs to be simultaneous, beginning in July

March 13, 2013 | To fulfill the requirements of the sequester, federal meat inspectors will be furloughed in July on the same day in every part of the country, and each inspector will be furloughed for a total of 11 days before September 20, Agriculture Undersecretary for Food Safety Elisabeth Hagen told the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee today. …

Concerns are growing with wide scale meat contamination in other countries.

U. S. Boosts Horse Meat Testing on Imports to insure no contamination with horse meat.

Justin DeJong, a spokesman for the agriculture department…said the Obama administration was urging Congress to reinstate an effective ban on the production of horse meat for human consumption that lapsed in 2011.

The impending approval comes amid growing concern among American consumers that horse meat will somehow make its way into ground beef products in the United States as it has done in Europe. Major companies, including Tesco, Nestlé and Ikea, have had to pull food from shelves in 14 countries after tests showed that products labeled 100 percent beef actually contained small amounts of horse meat. Horse meat is not necessarily unsafe, and in some countries, it is popular. But some opponents of horse slaughtering say consumption of horse meat is ill-advised because of the use of various kinds of drugs in horses


USDA May Approve Horse Slaughter:  New York Times

America’s Horses: Toxic Substances and  the Human Food Chain

Horse slaughter issue revving up again in United States, Courier Journal, Louisville, KY.

Equine Welfare Alliance: US Horsemeat Banned in EU

5. Environmental Issues.

a. Odors from the carnage, and from the chlorine misters meant to cover it up, were overpowering and blue over much of the town.

b. The hospital blocks away was forced to install special air filters to protect their patients

c. A pump installed by Dallas Crown to force their waste down the sewer actually caused blood to rise up into the bathtubs of the neighborhood.

This and many other issues are described in The Impact of Horse Slaughter Plants on Communities by Equine Welfare Alliance

D.  Community and Economic Impact of Horse Slaughter

1. Valley Meats, LLC, Roswell, NM.  Litigation and Track Record

a. Roswell, New Mexico’s Valley Meat Company cited by New Mexico Environmental Board’s Solid Waste Division for Years-Long Violations of State Law.

When the first applicant for an American horse slaughterhouse operation surfaced earlier this year, Front Range Equine Rescue (FRER) immediately investigated in order to determine the nature of the applicant’s business.  FRER discovered that the applicant, Valley Meat Company, had a fifteen-foot high pile of dead cattle rotting on its property, creating a health hazard for the community and placing into serious question the operator’s ability to start up his new operation, slaughtering former American companion, work and competition horses for human consumption.  Pictures of the pile taken by both state and federal officials showed a horrific sight.  FRER determined that Valley Met had been in violation of New Mexico laws for years, specifically because its owners had been maintaining this massive public health and safety hazard on the property without any proper or responsible abatement.  FRER presented extensive documentation to the state Environmental Board, urging the state to take a careful look at Valley Meat’s operation.  In response the state Environmental Board, and its Solid Waste Division, undertook a detailed evaluation which this week resulted in a finding that Valley Meat was in grave violation of the solid waste laws, and that it should be fined $86,400 for what amounts to one of the highest penalties for a solid waste violation issued in New Mexico…

 The “dead pile” in roswell is simply another in a long list of reasons why stopping horse slaughter is critical.  “We are gald to have been a part of the team that stopped Valley Meat, which was eager to butcher American horses, and which was at the center of environmental cruelty  violations,” said Hillary Wood,

President of FRER.  “Every time the horse slaughter industry has attempted to set up shop, it has made clear that it has no concern for the public, for the law, or for the horses.

Front Range Equine Rescue.

b. Letter from USDA veterinarian RE: Valley Meats.

From: Laurelle []

Sent: Wednesday, March 20, 2013 2:52 AM

To: APNM News

Subject: Re: Promoting Solutions, Not Slaughter

I have sent emails to all the the politicians you have listed. I worked for the USDA and was sent to Roswell, NM. While I was there, I had to close them down due to inhumane transportation of cattle. Even though the transporters were told to repair the floors on their trailers, I observed cows with their udders dragging on the ground through holes in the flooring. These cows came from Texas, and suffered a painful ride. That plant is not large enough to handle horses humanely, and it makes me cringe that they could re-open to kill horses. They were already shut down by the USDA, and to re-open to slaughter horses should NOT be done!


Laurelle Danton, DVM

2. Story of Paula Bacon, former Mayor of Kaufman, Texas which housed one of the three U.S. horse slaughter plants before the state passed legislation to close it based upon serious community safety and health hazards, has actively encouraged Congress to pass federal legislation to outlaw horse slaughter and horses for transport to slaughter. Texas and Illinois state government officials incurred substantial enforcement costs in an effort to try to regulate environmental problems with horse slaughter plants, which included stench that emanated several miles from the facilities, fluid runoff and blood in community water supplies.

Paula Bacon stated, “The standard of living dropped during the time horse slaughter facilities operated.” “The industry caused significant and long term hardship to my community…” “I will gladly provide you with detailed reports from my former City Manager, Police Chief, and Public Works Director regarding odor and wastewater effluence violations at the Dallas Crown horse slaughter plant in the City of Kaufman.”

In the letter she wrote to her congressional constituents, she affirmed, “We who love these magnificent animals do not only protest their slaughter on “emotional grounds” as the pro-slaughter group would have you believe. I am posting a letter that I wrote to the Legislators considering this move. I know that a horse slaughtering plant is the “death knell” as far as property values in the area surrounding them go.”

Tulsa World,  Paula Bacon – Repeating History

Texas Mayor Paula Bacon Kicks Some Horse Slaughter Tail


4. Horse slaughter facilities are economically insignificant for the communities in which there are situated.

Contrary to what some pro-horse slaughter proponents say, horse slaughter facilities trigger negative economic growth for the communities in which they are situated.

 Comments from Paula Bacon, former Mayor of Kaufman, Texas, home of Dallas Crown elucidates the issues.  Bacon was vigilant in underscoring the operations copious environmental violations and subsequent negative impact on the community…  She cited, low-paying jobs, offensive odors, property devaluation, strains on local infrastructures and crime among others.

When Horse Slaughter Comes to Town, International Fund for Horses.

5.  A Letter from Someone Who Lived there:

 In a letter written by Amie Selecman, whose family lived near the Dallas Crown Plant, she says:

I could hear the horses scream from my cousin’s house – yes, the SCREAM!  They are in fear, they are in pain, they know what is going on from smelling the fear of the other horses.  Horses are not like cattle who will stand still while the captive bolt does kill them.  The captive bolt DOES NOT KILL HORSES!

I could go on and on telling you more gory details about entrails, flesh and bones rotting in the hot sun for weeks before the overflowing containers are removed.  The blood flowing from the faucets, the horse tissue coming up in your toilet because the plants cant dispose of them properly, so they end up power flushing them into the town’s water and sewer systems.  Not to mention that the town becomes over flowing with every prey animal you can think of/  The smell of death reaches far and wide to all prey animals lookif for an easy meal.  Coyotes are just the start of it, vultures, buzzards, mice by the hundreds of thousands roam through the town.  Your own dog could easily bring home the leg of a horse with a shoe still intact on the hoof.

 Letter from Amie Selecman

5. Decline in Property Values

 Decline of Property Values and a Decrease in the Quality of Community Health

Communities which were home to horse slaughterhouses, such as those in Texas and Illinois experienced declining property values, as well as critically negative impacts with regard to quality health factors.

Paula Denmon, a realtor who specializes in equine properties from Waxahachie, Texas, wrote a letter to Congress, titled “To All Legislators Considering the Renewal of Horse Slaughter in the United States,” which detailed her professional observations concerning property values in relation to horse slaughter plants. She claimed that despite highly desirable and affordable properties, which had multiple desirable amenities typically sought after by horse people compared to other areas, buyers adamantly refused those within Kaufman counties because of the horse slaughter plant. She asserted “This was my introduction to the horrible reputation of the Dallas Crown Horse Slaughter Plant. My clients did not want to buy property in the county.

They were worried that they would come home from work to find their horses gone, stolen, and already slaughtered at the nearby plant. And some just loved horses, and did not want anything to do with an area close to where people killed them to be food. “Americans don’t eat horsemeat, why are they here” they would ask?”

Following the closing of the Dallas Crown horse slaughter plant, Paula Denmon witnessed the City of Kaufman, as well as small communities in outer lying areas flourish, as a result. Not only were families moving back into these areas, but there was also a corresponding increase in new businesses becoming established, thus improving the overall economy. She contended, “… the property values of the acreage properties [have] gone up dramatically… “I would caution that the reintroduction of horse slaughter plants would have significant detrimental effects on the communities that exist close to it. They will put real estate values in the “toilet”. The jobs are low-paying and seem to attract people who do not fit into the life of the community.” Deception.pdf

6. Increase in Crime in Communities with Horse Slaughter Plants

There is an irrefutable increase in crime in communities with all slaughterhouses.  This appears to be even worse for horse slaughter.  Violent crimes, including sexual assaults and crimes against family are the most effected. (Study done by Fitzgerald and Kalof.)

In Kaufman, Texas, after Dallas Crown closed:

Murders dropped 100%, Rapes dropped 100%, Robberies dropped 65.6%,  Assaults dropped 61.2%, Thefts dropped 71.2%, Auto Theft dropped 83.3%.

When Horse Slaughter Comes To Town, International fund for Horses. 2.pdf

The Impact of Horse Slaughter Plants on Communities by Equine Welfare Alliance,

 City and crime statistics, Kaufman, Texas – Raw Data Before and After Slaughter Plant in 2006

6.  Increase in horse theft, and criminal elements.




7.  Impact on Employment

 a. Low paying jobs – no benefits – statistics on turnover

Turnover rates:

“You will continuously have to find the workers, since annual turnover rates typically exceed 100 percent. (The interviews I did suggest turnover rates of around 150 percent). Illegal aliens are often preferred, but poor recent immigrants who do not speak English are also desirable employees. By the standards of the international human rights community, the typical working conditions in America’s slaughterhouses constitute human rights violations…”

Jonathan Safran Foer, Eating Animals, New York: Little, Brown and Company (2009).   (pp. 131-2).

b.. Working conditions – Worker safety – GAO Report shows dangers of  working around animals still alive when suspended.

8.  Cost of USDA inspection of horse slaughter houses

a. Prior to defunding Horse Slaughter inspections cost in excess of                                                         $5 Million annually.

b. Under current sequester, the additional burden of hor slaughter could endanger US food supply due to inadequate  number of inspectors, frequency of inspections.

F.  Disputing Pro Slaughter Propaganda

 Those  who are pushing commercial horse slaughter are outright lying to the public, calling it a “humane euthanasia alternative.” They are telling people that it is a community service to get rid of old, sick and unwanted horses when 92% of horses slaughtered are young and healthy. They are stating that in the U.S. we can “do it better” than Canada and Mexico, instead of banning the practice and inhumane transport of horse out of our Country to slaughter

1. Slaughter is not Euthanasia

2. Horses slaughtered are not old and sick but young and useful.

3. Overpopulation of horses cited in NM in particular – DUE TO PROXIMITY to                    Horse slaughter – EU report – horses dumped at border.  Tom Witte, NM Sec of             Ag,  cited 60-90,000 free roaming horses in NM – totally unsubstantiated per

4. Myth that horse slaughter in the US will be more humane than in Mexico.

Due to EU requirements, the two large slaughter houses in Mexico where most of the US horses go for slaughter,  use captive bolt.  Therefore it is no more inhumane in Mexico than in the US

5. Horse slaughter is not necessary

G. Consequences of Banning Slaughter and Banning Transport of horses for slaughter.

1. Each year 1% (over 900,000)  of horses die or are euthanized humanely and are disposed of in an environmentally friendly way.

2. Horses exported for slaughter account for only 1% of horses in the US.

a. Horse slaughter enables irresponsible breeding – 70% of horses                                             slaughtered come from the Quarter horse industry.  70% of all thoroughbred foals go to slaughter.  Breeders take a tax write off  so benefit from overbreeding, thereby rewarding them for irresponsible behavior.

b. Certainly cases of horse abandonment and abuse have increased since horse slaughter houses have been shut down. However, at approximately the same time the slaughter houses were shut down, the economy tanked, therefore it is misleading to attach abandonment issues to the closure of slaughter houses.  They were likely fueled by the economy.    In any case, animal abuse is  punishable by law.

c. With some effort on the part of legitimate Equine Rescue, the number                                of horses currently being exported to slaughter can be reabsorbed into the                             equine population, and will contribute to overall economy.   And with                                  improvements in the economy the ability to absorb horses will improve.

H.  Mitigating the Impact of a Ban on Horse Slaughter.

1. Taxation on Breeding.

Currently breeders enjoy a breeding tax incentive by way of millions of tax dollar           write offs.  Ideally, these breeding incentives and prohibitive tax write offs should             be abolished and taxes enforced.

Overactive breeders are the root of the surplus horse situation devaluing the market.  This would return horse breeding to quality over quantity and benefit from the industry as a whole.

When Horse Slaughter Comes to Town, International Fund for Horses, page 21

2. State providing low cost euthanasia.  Veterinary Associations should be                                supportive to advocate for free or low cost euthanasia.

3. Food support for families with horses facing economic difficulties

4. Better funding of rescues that use donated funds to take care of horse not just pay for overhead.

5. Use of PZP a well-known birth control drug for horses both wild and domestic for population control.

6. Explore Positive and Practical uses for horses.

a. Therapy horses for children with disabilities

b. Use of horses for returning veterans with PTSD

c. Use of horses for helping to rehabilitate criminals.

d. Use of horses for physically and mentally handicapped

e. Establishment of horse retirement communities in parks where people can take riding lessons, see and interact with horses.

Lexington, Ky. uses donated  horses in a large park set up for horse back riding. Gives people in the city a way to learn about horses, learn to ride.

Excellent opportunities for children – especially inner city  children who are disadvantaged.  Horse Parks in conjunction with rescue facilities could help defray costs.


*Horse Slaughter – Its Ethical Impact and Subsequent Response of the Veterinary Profession, A White Paper, Veterinarians for Equine Welfare

 Manes & Tails Organization: Use of the “Penetrating Captive Bolt” as a means of rendering equines insensible for slaughtering violates the Humane Slaughter Act of 1958

The Humane Slaughter Act

Horse Slaughter Facts AWI

Darrell R. Charlton, Jr. 12 Reasons Against Commercial Equine Slaughter, Animal Law Coalition.

Horse Slaughter Facts:  The Humane Society.

Wild For Life Foundation Equine Protection Program, Facts that Refute the 7 Most Common Myths about Horse Slaughter’s_Facts_that_Refute_the_7_Most_Common_Myths_about_Horse_Slaughter.pdf

Animals’ Angels exposes Truth of Horse Slaughter

Stop the inhumane killing of American horses for food: Commentary by Humane Society’s Wayne Pacelle

What’s in Your Horse Burger?  Newsweek Article – Harmful Chemicals in Horse Meat

Karin Hauenstein – Horse Activist

Fraud on a Massive Scale.  Europe’s Horse Meat Scandal Keeps on Growing.

U. S. Boosts Horse Meat Testing on Imports to insure no contamination with horse meat.

 Breaking News from Front Range Equine Rescue

 Horse Slaughtering Legal in US But Public Won’t Bite, NBC News

USDA – May Approve Horse Slaughtering

Secretary of Agriculture Calls for Alternatives to Horse

Equine Welfare Alliance: US Horsemeat Banned in EU

Horse slaughter issue revving up again in United States, Courier Journal, Louisville, KY.

Horsemeat: a Product of Cruelty, Dishonesty and Drugging Animal Welfare Institute

Vets For Equine Welfare Videos

Information Obtained from the USDA Regarding Violations of the Transport to Slaughter Regulations See Exhibit 4 bottom web page, Animals Angels.

Commercial Transportation of Equines to Slaughter,

Drug Residues in American Horse Meat. Equine Welfare Alliance

USDA May Approve Horse Slaughter:  New York Times

America‘s Horses: Toxic Substances and  the Human Food Chain

The Impact of Horse Slaughter Plants on Communities, by Equine Welfare Alliance.

Safe Act

 Horses – Our Nation built on their backs – Is slaughter our gratitude

Saving America’s Horses – Video

Footage shows stunned horse waking up just before it is about to have its throat cut

America‘s Horses: Toxic Substances and  the Human Food Chain

Graphic video- Russia

Pam McKissick Speaking out Against Horse Slaughter

Horsemeat Scandal Turns into a Food Safety Crisis

Texas Mayor Paula Bacon Kicks Some Horse Slaughter Tail

Paula Bacon – Repeating History

Horse Slaughter – Mary Nash’s Horse Slaughter Website

Horse Slaughter – A detailed study of horse slaughter and those who promote horse slaughter and make money from the killing of American horses for human consumption

Equine Advocacy Groups Expose Gross Gaps in U.S. Border Horse Slaughter Inspections:

Animal Angels Reports on Horse Slaughter

America‘s Secret and Brutal Horsemeat Trade

FOIA Request for information on Beltex Corp.

Horse Meat Applicant’s Food Safety is Questioned, The New York Times

Front Range Equine Rescue: RE: Valley Meats.

Horse Slaughter Applicant gives up after being fined

Valley Meats vs. USDA

Interveners and Defenders of Valley Meats vs. USDA

Tim Sappington Video  – Employee of Valley Meats

UDSA Letter to NM Dept. of Agriculture: RE Valley Meats

EWA President Clears the Air with USDA on Horse Slaughter Issue

The horse slaughter debate: separating facts from rhetoric

Pam McKissick speaks out against horse slaughter

Trent Lott

Tom Moran


185 Reasons to Stop Horse Slaughter

Annual American Equine Summit Unites Against Horse Slaughter

An Analysis of the GAO Report on Horse Welfare: Disturbing Omissions and Cover-up 

Controversy in NM and Canada

Ottawa refuses to say whether drug tainted horse meat entered food chain


Stop Horse Slaughter

Horse Slaughter Statistics AWI

Organizations and Individuals Opposed to Horse Slaughter










5 Responses to Horse Slaughter Information

  1. Running Wolf Eatinghouse says:

    Please save our horses .They dont harm any one and are beautiful horses. Let them run free as they should.

  2. william alexander says:

    leave the poor horses alone, they bring beauty and joy to our world

  3. Here are some links you might want to add to your excellent collection:
    How the GAO Deceived Congress About Horse Welfare After Closing of US Slaughter Plants:

    White Paper: How the GAO Deceived Congress About Horse Welfare After Domestic Horse Slaughter Plant Closings:

    GAO Accused Of Fraud As Horse Slaughter Plants Fight To Open:

    GAO on Horse Abuse:

    The Fuzzy Math Being Used to Justify Horse Slaughter in the United States:

    Evidence Shows GAO Horse Welfare Report Fraudulent:

    This last one is the latest from Vickery Eckhoff at FORBES and it is a BOMBSHELL:
    Grand Opening Of Horse Slaughter Plants Foiled Again: http://000Xi3465IHK

    • You are so right Suzanne. I have badly neglected my website for too long. I’m working as Director of Communications for The Cloud Foundation and have been focusing my energies on that. I need to get back to my own website. Thank you for your input.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>