Horse News

Breaking News: ASPCA Research Confirms Americans Strongly Oppose Slaughter of Horses for Human Consumption

ASPCA Press Release

ASPCA urges public support for the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act

Americans say NO to Horse Slaughter in U.S. ~ photo by R.T. Fitch (copyright)

NEW YORK, Feb. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ –The ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today announced in a newly released poll conducted by Lake Research Partners that 80 percent of American voters are opposed to the slaughter of U.S. horses for human consumption. The nationwide survey reveals that Americans oppose horse slaughter overwhelmingly regardless of their gender, political affiliation, whether they live in an urban or rural area, or their geographic location. Further, it confirms that a vast majority of horse owners are also against the slaughtering of our nation’s equines.

“The overwhelming majority of Americans are not just against horse slaughter but are intensely opposed to this cruel practice. As more people learn that we are allowing our horses to be shuttled off to a gruesome death all for the sake of foreign gourmands, they are outraged and opposition for this grisly act is growing,” said Nancy Perry, senior vice president of ASPCA Government Relations.  “Anyone who has been to the movies lately knows the price horses have paid by carrying us to war, building our nation, and serving our entertainment and companionship needs.  Americans have a responsibility to protect these intelligent, sensitive animals from being butchered.”

Horse slaughter is inherently cruel because the biology of horses makes them difficult to stun and they often remain conscious during their slaughter. In addition, horsemeat can be toxic to humans, as horses are frequently administered drugs that violate the safety regulations mandated for food animals. Furthermore, the majority of horses killed for human consumption are in good condition and could go on to lead productive lives in loving homes. They just happen to be in the wrong place at the wrong time – and this means that any horse, no matter how loved, is just one bad sale away from the slaughterhouse until we ban this practice.

“As a lifelong horse lover and rider, I believe that horses deserve to be treated with respect, and I recognize that horse slaughter has no place in our country as horses are not raised as livestock here, but as companion animals,” said Senator Mary Landrieu, D-La. “I will continue working with my colleagues in Congress and other advocates to ensure that the American people are heard and that we stop this inhumane practice once and for all.”

The last U.S. horse slaughterhouses were closed in 2007, and despite the fact that Americans do not consume horsemeat, Congress recently failed to continue defunding horsemeat inspections, making it legal for horse slaughterhouses to reopen. The ASPCA urges all caring Americans to support the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act (H.R. 2966 and S. 1176 ), which would prohibit the sale and  transport of horses for slaughter in the United States, as well as across the border to Canada and Mexico. The passage of this critical legislation would end the current export and slaughter of approximately 100,000 American horses each year.

“Using tax dollars to fund this inhumane and controversial practice is a wildly unpopular decision, as our research confirms, and has fueled the fire for a complete ban on horse slaughter,” added Perry.

For more information on the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act, please visit

Lake Research Partners designed and administered this telephone survey, using professional interviewers, with 1,008 registered voters. The nationwide survey was conducted January 9-12, 2012. The margin of error for the total sample is +/-3.09 percentage points, and larger for sub-groups. The data were slightly weighted by gender, race, age, and region to ensure a comprehensive representation of registered voters in the U.S. 

About the ASPCA®

Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) is the first humane organization established in the Americas and serves as the nation’s leading voice for animal welfare. More than one million supporters strong, the ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. As a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, the ASPCA is a national leader in the areas of anti-cruelty, community outreach and animal health services. The ASPCA, which is headquartered in New York City, offers a wide range of programs, including a mobile clinic outreach initiative, its own humane law enforcement team, and a groundbreaking veterinary forensics team and mobile animal CSI unit. For more information, please visit To become a fan of the ASPCA on Facebook, go to To follow the ASPCA on Twitter, go to


22 replies »

  1. RT – Can Declan use this (re-print) this in his blog?? ( He just needs to indicate that it’s a ASPCA Press Release and then we are al set to use it – correct? O r do we need special permission from someone? Please help! Thanks!


  2. I am thankful that there are some rays of hope to get this stopped. Thank you for all you are doing. More people are learning that horse slaughter is set to be funded right here in the U.S. Let’s keep working toward massive public outcry. As individuals, when we feel we can do nothing, let’s remember the quote by Edward Hale: “I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And I will not let what I cannot do interfere with what I can do.”


  3. and never to forget the unintended consequence of horse slaughter…when it was in the US, and even still, as American horses get moved across our borders to Canada and Mexico….the tragic unintended consequence of horses being stolen for quick money – Jamie Cohen’s anguish over her stolen Rhapsody Rose….that “horse trainer” promising to re-home horses, then “blink,” off they go to slaughter…. Americans are being betrayed on multiple levels !!!

    and, too, there are all those REAL unwanted horses that get rejected at the border and are abandoned to starve by the KBs !!!


  4. Great news! I always thought the numbers were much higher of those opposing horse slaughter in the US. Also the fact that horse lovers and horse groups are becoming more vigilant about getting the truth out to the public that horse slaughter is far from humane euthanasia, quite the contrary.


  5. A big thank you to all that are trying to stop the horse slaughter it is all about money not the welfare of our precious horses that have been our servants and have done so much for America they deserve the best. When my horse has to go I will have her put to sleep before I would take her to an auction and sell her and wonder if she went to slaughter, that is a nightmare for the poor horses and would be for me also!!!!. Thanks to all the angels out there taking care of the ones that need help:)


  6. Did they survey horse owners separately? I don’t see any proof in this one sided article to substantiate the claim “Further, it confirms that a vast majority of horse owners are also against the slaughtering of our nation’s equines.” The survey appears to be a public opinion poll. I really doubt that most horse owners would agree with this! None that I know!!! If there was a survey that focused on HORSE OWNERS, I would like to see the results of that!

    Also the statement “the majority of horses killed for human consumption are in good condition and could go on to lead productive lives in loving homes.”???? Really? Do you REALLY think there are that many “loving homes” out there for these horses? NO!!


  7. I’m glad that the asparagus has taken up the cause as well and I’m glad that a new poll has come out. Perhaps our dumbed up congressmen will open their eyes finally. As for mine, I’ll put it this way..of they want my vote they will prove to me that moral values weigh heavily on my vote. I rarely vote a straight ticket and I’m going to vote on the one who scores highest on the animal welfare issues. If they get bad reviews they will NOT get my vote. I’m not afraid to tell them that either..i ha e before and will again..


      • I am leaving it because I love it…my iPhone does the same thing. I sent Terry a message, a few months ago, where I said that I would stop by the store to pick up some chicken to BBQ for dinner and I must have misspelled “chicken” and the phone plugged in “children” instead…NOT GOOD!!! Got a real odd look from Terry upon my arrival home…


  8. I have just posted a comment on Senator Boxer Facebook page. She is a sponsor and told her she needs to make every effort to ensure her colleagues in the Senate support SB1176 and get horse slaughter in the US stopped once and for all. I put a link of this post from R.T. It would be great to have supporting comments from others. I also put a post about the BLM roundup in Flannigan and Laura Leigh’s YouTube video, as well as the clip on the round of up the burros in Twin Peaks, CA yesterday where over 70 burros were kept in 80 degree heat for over 8 hours with NO water. In addition to commenting on their FB pages, again as has been suggested, clog those fax machines, write those post cards, send emails and make follow up calls!


  9. I would have guessed those numbers to be just that , its great to know for sure…Thanks ASPCA, and it would be nice to devote some of that air time to the Plight of the horses……………………………What kind of person or American would be for horse Slaughter provided they knew the facts of it ??????????? It is the most Brutal inhumane death for any animal especially the Horse, I dont like to even mention Slaughter in the same sentence as the word Horse, Knowing the true facts of it , turns my stomach………………………………What is needed now is an all out intervention by every person who is against Horse Slaughter……………………….We could never lose…………………………………. Im ready to man up and Im not a man………………………….


    Blow to European Horse Meat market expected to hit the US
    Belgian and Dutch consumers were shocked to learn of widespread horse slaughter-related cruelty in North and South America. Undercover video footage aired on three major news programs showed horses designated for slaughter are routinely starved, dehydrated, injured and abused.
    The 8½ minute news segment was produced by GAIA, a respected animal welfare organization from Belgium, with much of the footage provided by Animals’ Angels USA. The dire conditions of horses at slaughter plants, feedlots and markets in Mexico, Brazil and the U.S., have generated talk of boycotts and moratoriums on the import of horse meat from these countries.


  11. I have been reading this – 80% of Americans are against horse slaughter – for a long time on here now, and although I do believe that the majority of Americans are against horse slaughter. I believe that true American’s are in the minority. How many people in this country, actually went to school and learned about the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and that the 1st and 2nd amendments are the true freedoms that make all the other freedoms possible. How many still stand when the Pledge of Allegence is played or get a proud feeling in their stomach when they see an American flag flying on someones porch or get upset when an occupyer tears the flag down and throws it in the dirt. Any more there are to many Korean Americans, African Americans, Italian Americans,German Americans, Japanese Americans, and Mexican Americans, and so on – what happened to just Americans? And the problem as I see it that these other cultures have come here and they ate horse in their countries. So to them it’s no big deal. And because I never see Americans ever eating horse, there is some reason our government wants to open horse slaughter plants in this county( besides just money ) are they planning on selling horse meat in specialty shops here? ( do they know that the true American IS in the minority?)

    And the BLM only has enough horses to last about 6 months if the number of horses sent to slaughter is correct, so that part totally makes no sense–except that our government is pretty good at slight of hand keeping us busy on one thing while they do another.

    And then there is the problem that everyone is focused on – chemicals in horse meat- how many people that eat cows, pigs, chickens and other meat, know the poisons and toxins that are fed to these animals for the American consumer to eat – all with the blessing of the FDA and our government – believe me – all in all the horse is probably a safer meat.

    And letting other countries know about the conditions of horses, ~~~~ I will bet that not even half the people in this country know about feedlots and slaughter houses, much less what goes in their food supply. They believe what they are fed by the media, cows are in fields, milk comes from those happy cows in California, and chickens peck around grandma’s yard until she goes out and gets the eggs.

    This is all just my opinion—-as I see it. BECAUSE ~~ I am just at a loss about all of this.


  12. before someone jumps on this——–I was not condoning eating horse meat, just saying that all our meat is basically ——- unfit for human consumption.


  13. I think not only do you guys need to focus on passing the american horse slaughter ban, but also finding a way to stop the united horsemen, I’ve always wodered why doesn’t congress amend the horse slaughter prevention act to another bill like, they could amend it to the FY13 appropriations bill, still focus on the main horse slaughter prevention act bill, I feel that it might pass this year especially since I see co sponsers stacking up all the time, I think the best way to pass it is to pass it through the senate first, since it’s the hardest one to get passed, because of filibusters, then pass it through the house.


  14. LaDee, sorry but I DO BELIEVE that the majority of American’s, horse owners or not, are against horse slaughter. When ever I talk to someone about horse slaughter you can see by the look on their face that it is unthinkable. And for that matter whenever talking to horse owners most will say I would never send my horse to slaughter but … It is the but. . . where you hear them say the pro-slaughter propaganda lines. So really I think most people, horse owners and not, are against horse slaughter.

    There are many other polls out their. Just look at which is a well regulated polling site and see that 78% support HR 2966 the American Horse Slaughter Protection Act. There are many other polls that put numbers from 67% to 80%.


  15. We need a massive campaign to bring horse slaughter to the forefront and need all trainers of racehorses and trackers to support the message that they MUST find good homes for racehorses after their racing days have finished. TOO many of these beautiful animals have ended up with the killer buyers with all the other beautiful horses that were loved by families and discarded like old furniture. WE MUSH STOP THIS CARNAGE and bring it to light to the majority of American citizens and especially to the Congress so they will STOP any attempts to reinstate slaughter in the U.S.


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