Horse News

14 Year Old Offers Solution in Beleaguered Horse Slaughter Debate

Forward by R.T. Fitch, article by Chey Little

Young Voice Continues Fight Against Predatory Horse Slaughter

Childrern Saving Horses by Marcy Leonard

Six weeks ago we featured an article on the efforts of a 14 year old California girl who was attempting to stem the tide of a handful of special interests attempting to ram the concept of butchering companion horses for human consumption down the throats of the American public; said article was one of the more popular publications for the month of December here at Straight from the Horse’s Heart.  Now, as the misguided few assault children and the public majority in an effort to forward their cause of eating their best friends the same 14 year old, Cheyenne Little, has brazenly offered a potential solution that, to date, has not netted her any hate mail or threats from the dark underbelly of predatory horse slaughter and reaped great praise from folks around the world.  Chey’s petition, in it’s entirety, and the appropriate signature link are entered, below, along with a thoughtful video produced by Chey, herself.  The young ones give us hope.” ~ R.T.

EBC Program (Equine Breeding Certification)

What:

The Equine Breeding Certification (EBC) program is a program I designed myself. It requires people to go through a certification program before they can breed their horse. This certification program is similar to the one you go through at the DMV to get your driver’s license. It’s not a difficult thing to enforce and the whole country would benefit.

Why:

The EBC program would cause anyone who was interested in breeding their horse to become educated in the area before they bred the horse(s). Right now each week thousands of perfectly good horses are being shipped around the country and over the border for slaughter. These horses are the product of uneducated breeders, irresponsible owners, and cheap sales. People who didn’t know what they were getting themselves into turn their horses onto the roads to starve to death and be hit by cars. All of this would be stopped with the EBC program. The economy would be driven up, horses would be treated more humanely, and people would be employed.

The Basics:

If this program was put into place in our country you would have to go through the following steps to breed a horse-
• Educate yourself on breeding
• Take, and pass, a written exam on breeding soundness, the economics of it, pairing horses, foaling, breeding methods, simple genetic disorders, and moderate conformational pairing.
• Broodmares and stallions need a written approval of breeding soundness from your veterinarian each year to be presented to the EBC board and approved by them
• A bi yearly fee would need to be paid for your certificate
• A cap would be placed on the yearly production size

You may be wondering just what all this will do-
By making people take a written exam, just like the one you take at the DMV, people will need to study for it and inform themselves on the matter. During this process people may decide that breeding their horse is not for them. People who are unable to pass the test after 2 tries would not be allowed to breed horses as they would not be educated enough on the matter.
If broodmares and stallions needed to be approved for breeding by both the board and a veterinarian there would be far fewer foals produced from incompatible horses. Also infections and easily transmitted diseases could be caught before the horses were bred.

Truthfully if you cannot afford a bi yearly fee to breed your horse(s) you cannot afford to be breeding them properly at all! This would discourage many people because of the fee’s involved.

How would we cap the yearly production size? When you go in to pay your fee and take your exam every other year, the number of successful horses you put out in the previous years would determine the amount of horses you would be allowed to breed yearly for the next two years. If you only put out a couple of successful horses but bred 10 mares your number of mares that you could breed in the next two years would be lowered. This encourages people to breed only the best and put training into the foals to produce the highest quality horses.

Who:

This system can, and would be, used by EVERYBODY. The racing industry, show jumpers, event horses, dressage horses, reining breeders, halter facilities, every single person in the country would have to go through this program to breed a horse.

Benefits:

The EBC program would have so many benefits to it!
• Rise in the economy
• Rise in the price for horses
• Humane treatment
• Employment

How you ask?

The fees from the people paying for the certificates and the fines from people who were not obeying the law would really add up, boosting our economy easily.
There would be no such thing as a $500 horse anymore. Horses would be well trained and prices would skyrocket into the thousands for a high quality horse. This would also improve the economy and cause horses to go to homes where owners were more likely to provide top care for them.
Horses would no longer be crossed, abandoned in pastures, dumped on the side of the road, let loose, and destroyed. Every horse would be made for a purpose before it was even conceived.
Who’s going to be on the EBC board, approve vet exams, and patrol for people breaking the law? Tons and tons of state employee’s of course!

Consequences:

So what happens if I choose to shove my Thoroughbred/Paint mare through the fence with my neighbors Friesian/Morgan stallion? With every law there must be enforcement and consequences. Large fines would be applied. People who are breeding horses in such a way typically cannot bear the weight of a large fine, otherwise they would just go the cheaper way and get approved. The second time the fine doubles. The third time horses will be removed from the premises and the fine will be reapplied.

How do you prove it’s a certified foal?

When your vet comes out to do a breeding soundness exam on the mare and stallion a copy of the written approval will be made and kept by the mare’s owner from both the mare and stallion. When the vet comes out to do an exam on the mare and foal after foaling the approval paperwork will be gone over once again and a permanent certificate will be made for the foal saying it is in fact approved. This will be copied and sent in with its registration papers at the time of registration. Uncertified horses will be declined for the registry and investigated.

This is only the outline for the Equine Breeding Certification (EBC) program. I expect this program to improve dramatically overtime with the help of other concerned and responsible breeders! Please sign this petition to help start this program. We need it, our country needs it, and our horses need it. So sign today

Click (HERE) to sign Chey’s Petition
Click (HERE) to visit Chey’s Blog
Click (HERE) to visit Equine Welfare Alliance’s Children’s Page

49 replies »

  1. I love the concept, but most of us are pleasure riders with no aspirations of showing in any form. Now my $500-$1500 trail partner becomes $3,4,or 5000.00? How would you work that out? I commend you on having thought all of this through. I would support this type of measure. Kudos Cheyenne!

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    • Deb…you breeding and selling that living product? If not, I don’t think you should be concerned.

      BTW, in Europe, the state controls breeding certification for specific breeds. Many equines bred never go to that level and still go to slaughter. However, the EU passport system will slow down the slaughter process….supposedly.

      The government in the US will never attempt this. The breed registries need to do this. Good luck.

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    • Hello,
      That is exactly the point of my petition. Please don’t take this the wrong way but you shouldn’t be breeding a $500 trail horse. While it may be a wonderful horse the ones that should be bred are only the horses of high quality. See you would not be able to breed your mare if this law took effect and there would be one less horse on this planet. There’s hundreds of thousands of people that will want to be able to breed their horses that will not due to low quality or high costs. Theres thousands of less horses right there, exactly what we need! The horses that would be produced would come from purebreds, good facilities and living conditions, have trainers, educated breeders and owners, good lines, and would be wanted. I do get what your saying though. I probably wouldn’t be able to breed my mare because of the cost either. It’s sad but it’s what we need.
      Chey

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      • Cheyenne,

        Study production from chickens to equines. Then you begin,BEGIN to understand the disconnect as an old, fat fat lady that has studied ag gets (I am the old, fat lady). It’s not about NOT eating animals; it’s about doing it this way. I remember what I was instructed and remember the stuff I was taught in the ’70s that said in my brain and heart …Ummm, you are wrong.

        The beauty of knowledge is that, it does not matter how old you are, right is right and you and the letter writing campaign scare the human pooh out of the killers.

        Refine your proposition, get experts and perceivere (sp? keep the course).

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      • I sincerely applaud all the thought you have put into this..I would like to point out, a “high quality” individual for trail is not the same “high quality” individual for reining or jumping..requires different conformation and skill set..breeding two world champions together does not in fact guarantee a superior individual..I have had and bred world champions..can testify to that…while I have registered horses..I believe the american mustang of spanish descent has some of the best confirmation today for athleticism and soundness..and I have judged many breeds..where would that leave them..as garbage?? I find agreement on many of the tings you have said..however, it appears on the wealthy would have horses..and that knowledge is something money cannot buy

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      • It’s the HEART of the horse that makes them great, not always the breeding. We’ve proven this ourselves and while we have NO ideas on breeding any of ours (we’ve rescued many) it’s not always the breeders who produce the best horses. Some without papers are GREAT.

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      • To Liferays02 above: You are so right. SOme horses that do not have great breeding are the sweetest and most endearing there is. The heart of the horse makes the horse. Just as we have some scum bags with lots of money and big upbringing and education, we can have a well bred horse that is not as great as some little thing that was bred on a farm somewhere. It’s the individual horse and how he thinks that determines how he will be. And that horse may not always have a pure bred or registered classification. Any horse is great in his own way but he must have been treated the way we would like to be treated. As I have said before, I volunteer at a sanctuary where I have 3 rescued horses and we have two there that have been so abused. THey seem like they would like to change and be more accepting to the human, but there past treatings get in the way and they will not come to you or if they do, they may like to bite. IT’s a same, because at some time in their past, I would bet they were loving animals and the human that had them ruined their lives to ever trust again. Humans can be dispicable at times. And, we see it each day with the BLM and the killer buyers and those running slaughter houses. BIG BUCKS AND GREEN BACKS ARE THEIR PRIORITY. What a better world we would have without them.

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      • Chey, I believe that what Deb is saying is that the cost of BUYING a horse for her purposes will be too high. You have tackled a very complex problem head on, and there will be wrinkles like this to work out. Indeed, Deb has a valid point. Not everyone who would be a great and responsible equine owner wants to be in the high end show industry. They just want a companion, a friend, a partner. Many of these loving homes are paycheck to paycheck homes. It does not make them less worthy, or the animal they love less healthy. The healing powers of equus should be encouraged and helped. Do, a price tag of $5,000. and up for an animal that would mean so much to someone who is worthy but not rich seems very unfair and elitist. Perhaps this is where we can encourage mustang adoptions. Thinking out of the box here.

        Another concern, of course, is that registry breeds can suffer from too narrow a gene pool, as is the case for Cleveland Bays, Poitous and others. Also, the pure bred breeds are more likely to develop breed specific vulnerabilities due to their narrow gene base. This is why it is critical to save our wild versions of all our domestic breeds whether it be horse, cow, or chicken. The genes of the wild counter parts could well save an entire breed should some disease target a weak gene pool. The infusion of the wild genes will help to provide immunity to such a disease. For instance, when the potato famine developed in Ireland, it was the result of potatoes which were so narrow genetically that when a blight presented itself, the whole crop of Ireland was wiped out, and people starved. This is true whenever registry breeds are developed. The gene pool becomes very narrow. So, this is something to be considered as this program is developed. I am absolutely wildly in love with the requirement to be informed!! Number one, hands (hooves) down the most important point in your proposal.

        However, on the other hand, I think it is unnecessary to re-certify the breeding qualifications of a mare or stallion every year. Once their conformation and lineage is established, a single inspection should be enough. I do agree with certifying the intent to breed through registry, to be a great idea. Perhaps, even providing a subsidy to NOT breed should the market be overburdened with a particular breed. Much like farmers do when they do not plant a particular crop because they are paid not to. This maintains a balance of product. The same would be true for horse, donkey and mule breeding. There would be established a central data bank that would alert breeders to how many the market can bare. A formula could be worked out, and responsible breeders could be subsidized for reducing their breeding for the year.

        This is a very well thought out plan that should be considered very seriously. Little wrinkles can be worked out to provide the industry with a sound plan for the future of equines in the United States. Something started long ago by Jim Key, was the concept that equines are worthy of kindness, respect and understanding. Now, a century later we are still struggling to make this truth a reality. Your work is a step in the right direction. With this, along with stricter enforcement of cruelty laws, The Beautiful Jim Key may finally be able to rest in peace, his mission accomplished. It would truly be a day to celebrate.

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    • Deb, there will never be a shortage of $500 horses – look at all the $5000 horses who either wind up with a mild physical issue that prevents them from being competitive show or race horses, or who just don’t have what it takes mentally for such work. Those horses will naturally decrease in value and become affordable to the person who just wants a backyard/trail horse.

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  2. Cheyenne, I think it’s wonderful you are trying to help our horses by stopping slaughter and over-breeding. I think the big breeders like the Quarter Horse Assoc. and some thoroughbred breeders will fight this so be prepared. The race horse breeders have cut back and race horse owners in some places are helping their horses . In cases of endangered breeds exceptions may have to be made. At the rate the BLM is wiping out wild horses they may soon qualify as endangered.

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  3. This is what is done in Germany. The German horses and their program are so good that we, Americans, import them to our country. Yes, even with all of our horses, the German horses are deemed to be so superior that we import them to our country. Germany has an overall “German Animal Breeding Law.” It may seem harsh to some but it’s beter than the alternative. Here is a link describing their progam: http://www.pferdewirtpruefung.info/Breeding.htm

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    • Agreed Rachel, but there are many unethical US importers that fail and take their failures to the unlicensed, unregulated US equine market to dump in the hunter/jumper world, dressage, etc.

      It is Nirvana for the trash of regulated Europe. (I don’t believe any equine is trash…just the humans that believe that) ,

      Let’s talk about auctions for the dumped European horses I’ve attended. Oh, and it is slick.

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  4. Cheynne, I’ve said for years that our dogs, cats, and horses should be allowed to be done by getting a permit and allowing for just so many to be bred by that individual. If it had been done previously, we would not be seeing what is happening today, I am sure. FOr a 14 year old, you are great. I hope we can see something like this happen. But, we must be mindful of what is happening by our own government relative to our wild horses and burros. Big business is playing a hand in this I am sure. We must find a way to protect and save our wild horses and burrow as well. THis is an example of government going into an area and overruling and not listening to the American taxpapers. We are the ones that own these horses, we are paying for them to be rounded up (even though we don’t approve of it), and we are seeing many killed or maimed by irresponsible contractors. WE must put these horses back on the ranges where their families remain and we must stop all transportation of our horses across our borders. May 2012 be the year for our HORSES. As the saying goes, “Out of the mouths of babes.” This is tremendous, Cheyenne. You are to be commended.

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  5. COrrection to the above. I’ve siad for years that our dogs, cats, and horses should be allowed to be bred by getting a permit, etc. Again, you expand on this and hopefully, it will hit the mainstream media U.S. wide to attract an enormous backlash for this disgusting practice by all killer buyers, auctions, and the U.S. Government Dept of Agriculture, BLM.

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  6. I am absolutely Anti- Horse slaughter, and I support the letter writing campaign. I am also an American, and do not support anybody telling me what to do with my horses, on my place. You see, we pay enough as it is just to be horse owners. I do not need regulations placed on me, like this, or like the passport system the EU has. I am a Free American. Or supposed to be. I am a breeder of horses. However, do to the economy, and the fact horses go to slaughter still, I have stopped my breeding program. I still care for 18 horses, including a Stallion, colts, foals, mares, and fillys. I use my horses, so, when I have a death in the herd, I breed a mare to have another horse. I use them with at risk youth, I need horses at varying ages for certain lessons. And I have certain people , close friends, who buy some of my horses, for their programs. Still, a new foal here is rare. And once slaughter ends, and economy improves, and the demand arises, maybe I will be able to breed a few mares. I sure dont like the idea of being controlled in order to enjoy my horses. Its bad enough I have to Coggins test my horses, by law, for a virus, that my horse can catch, a minute after the test is negative. I think a Coggins is a great idea, at point of sale. Banning Slaughter and transportation, will enforce people to be responsible breeders, when they have no where to dump the horses, they will have to be careful about the choicesthey make. We all know that neglect and abuse will still be there, it always is, whether there is slaughter or not. Enforcing animal abuse laws would be the thing to do . I still applaud this young lady and admire her greatly. I follow rules so if this happens, I will comply. I sure dont need it. I already feed and house, and vet care 18 horses, to keep them from going to slaughter. Then again I dont breed anymore..

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    • But if you are honest, you shouldn’t have a problem. You got a place for every equine, right?

      You breed responsibly, you should have no problem. Oh, and you require your breed registry to rehome and retire?

      This ain’t rocket science or meat science…this is about money.

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    • jennifer,I agree and am doing the same myself..for what we are all paying for feed..no one in their right mind could think they could recoup by selling to slaughter..Shut down the fricking borders..period..simple and fast way to stop it

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      • Just because you shut down the boarders doesnt mean there won’t be horses crossing. It’s also illigal for people to drink and drive but it happens all the time.

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      • JIm, you are right, greed is a big part of our problem. But, I think if we had loving horse volunteers at our border crossings, we could stop any horse from crossing our borders. With our anti- slaughter rules passed and our anti transportation across our borders and our volunteers at the border, this would end. Thank God. THen we have to find good homes for these horses. That is what they deserve. And then correct the problem we have with the Dept of Ag and the BLM. With all these atrocities out of the way, we would again see what God meant it to be for the horses. Then we have to get rid of the killer buyers and the bad auctions of the horses. These all encompass the bad treatment that our beloved equines get every day. We as a majority have to stick together and rally more to the bad humans that are responsible for what is happening to our horses and donkeys. We will win, if we continue the fight for these animals. We will be the victor and the enemy will be ours.

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    • Jennifer, You brought up the point of “enforcement”. I worked for a global animal welfare org, and spent MOST of my time getting law enforcement to enforce the laws they were sworn to enforce!
      We can’t get puppy mills, dog fighting, cock fighting, hog baiting, or illegal horse racing under control, and yet those humane laws have been in place for much longer.The good’ol boy attitude still abounds, and law enforcement has the attitude that they are spread too thin to protect any but the “human” element of their community. Just speak with a few sheriffs and ask them.
      Any such new laws/ordinances/regulations will be unenforced and worthless.
      It all comes down to US. We can’t leave it up to anyone else, as no one else cares.
      The breed registries COULD do something about it. However, when approached, they claim policing is not their function. They are “only record keepers”, and their obligations end at providing venues and keeping the stud books. However, if we can find ways to convince them that there is a profit in enforcing rules that benefit the horses, they just might be willing to consider ideas.
      In a perfect world, they would jump on the band-wagon for the sake of our horses, However, in the real world, there has to be profit in it for them.

      .

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  7. Hi Cheyenne, I commend you on your thought into this and love off horses. I have a few modifications though that may increase the appeal of this idea. Only require a inspection once and don’t involve the government many people are burned out by things they have done but also how easily they can be bought out do to speak by big businesses. The other is not to only allow two years as I fear people will try to train horses younger to maintain their ability to continue breeding and this will increase the risk of young horses being injured in training and deemed unfit for anything but standing in a pasture unable to do anything but be bred. Once again I applaud you for this great idea and hope people don’t take this the wrong way as it was only ment to show some possible problems that big breeders will have with it and possible problems for the horses.

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  8. Good to see someone this age pushing for responsible breeding. Perhaps some of the States with the worst “abandoned” horse problems could try this kind of plan, and if they get it to work it could expand to more States. I would think any income from fines and fees that exceeds the cost of running the program should go to Equine Rescue. So what State should be the pilot project? Would Texas be a good place to start?

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  9. Very well thought out plan. My main doubts is the testing. There are some well educated people who just freak out during tests or have phobias – so how it’s given would probably matter, and only two tries might break them. Perhaps an apprenticeship to a certified breeder would help them.

    But to trust the US or State governments with it? While they still en masse do these wild horse roundups? The breed registries should do it, but obviously they don’t in the US. So what it comes down to is: who do we get to regulate it and how? Apparently we need incentives to do these things that just make sense – because if it doesn’t make money – immediately – they don’t take the idea seriously. It’s sad that we should need such a thing, but then, if everyone were in it for their love of horses there would be much less of an issue – it would just be education. Some are just in it for the money and therein lie the problem.

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  10. Cheyenne, this is an interesting concept, that has been toyed with concerning dog breeding. However, it is totally un-American and an extreme Socialist concept. It would only work in a Socialist country, which we are not, and hope to never be. (our Beacon of Freedom is already growing dimmer)
    We have too much Government intervention in every part of our lives. WE, as a community need to step up and do what is right for animals, and stop expecting Big Brother. (all-encompassing-government) to make things run as they should.
    Your program is certainly appropriate for Breed Clubs to initiate, but not for the Federal Government.
    I hope that you will continue to give this serious thought, and revise it to present in some form to the major breed clubs.

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  11. I think this is an excellent idea and Cheyenne, you are to be commended for your assertiveness and responsible leadership for equines. I use to breed as well but quit due to the economy and present day situations for horses. I only suggest that the government and states be left out of this. My thinking is that this needs to be managed by those of equestrian knowledge which in itself would possible create jobs or jobs within a registry that may peak their interest. We are all too familiar at how the government does a poor job of things. Also, since I bred Arabs, they need 3 years to show some validity to this study since they are not ridden or bred til an older age. While we who are responsible do not need to be burdened with this, again this plan is brought on as the result of those that are irresponsible and I think it is of little consequence to bare for the sake of the horses if it stops slaughter, improves the breeds, limits backyard breeding and so on. And yes, this does not do well for the wild herds but I think it offers a gateway for people to buy a young mustang foal or wild mustang if they cannot afford the price improvement that this plan will quite possibly create. That way more of our wild ones will have a chance at getting homed. And it will free up the burden on the rescues so they can take in more mustangs over time. Everything has a trickle down effect and managed properly and incorporating all aspects of equines into what Cheyenne’s plan is laying out, well it can be expanded and polished to aid in helping all areas. It’s a great start and another great option that should be put in the face of the politicians and other breeders to think about. We already pay for other burdens wrongdoers have created for us. Heck you can’t even get allergy medicine because meth users have created restriction for all of us, right, and there are many other things we pay for we did not create. So I don’t think this is too much to ask for the safety and welfare of our equines. Anything is better than slaughter. Great job Cheyenne, I would support it.

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    • like Meg, I too used to breed horses. I bred Warmbloods for Dressage and Jumping, and because I most often dealt with breed associations from Europe, I know that strict breeding rules do reduce the number of animals available and drive up the costs of the horses. For a stallion’s get to be registered, he must pass strict approval tests, and also be chosen as a breeding stallion only after 60-100days of training and performance tests all carried out by professionals approved for the association.. Even in these economies these horses sell in the 6 figures. Mares also have certain qualifications, in registration and presentation to the breed group for approval.. Of course, not every horse is the $100,000+ horse, and there are affordable ones for the casual and amatuer rider. Also every horse must have a “passport”, and only horses clearly marked as a horse raised for slaughter can be slaughtered.. Drugs don’t slip into their horse meat..except the horsemeat from our horses slaughtered in Mexico and Canada. WE allow falsified documents that Vets approve sitting in an office. the paper work is never even attached to the specific horse.
      I quit breeding in 2005 when I could no longer be certain that my “babies” would have wonderful careers with owners who loved and respected them. Thus, Cheyenne, your suggestions are doable.. But I’m afraid with groups such as the AQHA, who refuse to curtail breeding, and support slaughter, the only way to accomplish your goal would be with a government mandate that would require the European Style Passport System. That way people would have to think before they bred, because that foal is going into the “for slaughter” population or the Never Slaughter poplulation before it is 6 months old.
      Congratulations on your well-thought out suggestion. If you want more information on the European Breed registries: Check out the KWPN (Dutch Registry) the AHHA (the American Holsteiner Association. etc.

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      • Polopaula, I agree with your accessment of the AQHA and any one associated with the racing industry. I firmly believe that all betters should be charged an addiitional fee for saving these horses, maybe $2.00-$5.00 per entry, and an assessment be charged to all owners AND trainers from their winnings. At point when a horse is no longer able to race, these $$$ would pay for them to go to a farm for rehoming and those of us, like myself, that would like a great riding horse could purchase them at a reasonable price. In return, those acquiring horses in the area or just want to volunteer would be taking care of these horses (ex, grooming, mucking stalls (corrals), bathing and cleaning hooves, as well as walking them) until they find homes. This needs to be in addition to a breeder being only allowed to breed a certain number of horses. What this needs to be based on could be decided on a reasonabe basis as we need to stop all these beautiful foals becoming two/three year olds and being sent to slaughter. THIS MUST STOP and with all our horse loving brains of all those wanting nothing but good for them, we will find an answer. THe good prevails and I firmly believe that we, the horse loving people, will prevail over all the bad in our government (BLM and Dept of AG) and the bad in our local communities that see only the green back in their existance in assisting in the chain of our horses ending up at a slaughterhouse.

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  12. Good try Chey, but this one is another slap in the face of our Constitution (not that it really has any life left in it). So what would follow this – would-be-parents having to take a “child producing course” and apply for a license to do so, getting it renewed every time they wanted a kid? Who judges the applicants and by whose criteria? Not a jury of my peers please and certainly not their criteria.
    Change that works can only come from within. It cannot be forced. Consciousness needs to be raised. Awareness campaigns based on hatred and fear are a shocking start, but it is the most powerful energy of love that will ultimately change this painful situation. Cinderella endings don’t just happen in the movies.

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  13. Everyone a few years back said automobiles were a fad…but they fad now is in the millions on our hyways…and who looks after the licsences required…not the manufactures..they just cost us thousands to own one…And we mutter and bitch about the fees to have the rights to drive ….license control on horses is do-able…the Goverment just has to relize the money’s they are missing out on…licenses to own studs are all that are required…foal fees will need to be high enough to deter the back yard breeders and make the big breeders slow down…Look at the millions that AQHA shows in profits each year..even in these TOUGH economicals times…what makes it tough times for the breeders??? Flooded markets…And if you state that you are a responsible breeder?? Give your head a shake..YOU mite say you are but can you state you know where everyone of your foals are today??? Or the stud that isn’t quite what your breeding program needs?? Or is just a little over the hill?? I can buy a highly bred blue roan QH tomorrow from a chap who has him for 500$…my vet was given a 25000$ QH stud imported from the US just 5years ago…he’s 15 years old..nothing but top names on both sides…told to put him down…wasn’t throwing the size they wanted…these two examples are just a fraction of the thousands out there..everyone knows of the unwanted studs..shipping pens are full of their foals…sold for 50-200$ depending on the weight..as that’s the only value they have..pounds….throw their papers in the trash..dead horses don’t need papers…We don’t need control on types of horses, control on the breeders is what is needed…breeders greed is what needs to be curbed..Not costs of horses on the markets…some of the best horses that most children and lots of adults need for a horse is your grade horse..hot blooded on the track..doing what they were bred for … And what even the blooded horses love to do, race and compete…but not shipped for 100$ because they can’t run fast enough etc,, etc..if ever one needs to be a winner, then races should only be run in heats of 3 horse at a time..Is this starting to make sense ??? Greed is the problem..not excess horses…once the greed is curbed then the excess horse will no longer exist..buyers won’t let a foal be worth thousands…the breeder still has to sell..the green horses will be worth more yes but not thousands…your horse that your granny can ride in the mountains or ride in completions will be the horse worth thousands..same as they still are…but thousands of blood horses won’t be sent for cancerous steak on some child’s plate…EH???

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  14. Jim, greed is a big problem. We have to stop the auctions of these horses and the killer buyers. They have to be put out of business. We have to pass anti slaughter again and pass the anti transportation across our borders law and we will have a great start. Then, we have to deal with our disgusting Dept of Ag and BLM to stop what they are doing to our beautiful wild horses and burros. We will win and the enemy will be ours. The more these disgusting individuals are brought out into the open and the amount of American taxpayers continue to climb in the horses favor, we will be victorous. We will never give up and our quantities will get bigger all the time.

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  15. Jim: Also we need to have loving horse volunteers at our borders to make sure there are no one getting across our borders with our horses. We need this to back up the anti transportation law.

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  16. Cheyenne, Good job..You have put a lot of thought into the plight of our horses. I am tired of the
    idea that these lovely animals are portrayed as nothing more than a chair or a pair of shoes that
    some people own. They are living breathing animals and should be treated with respect and honor. If you do any research at all, most European nations have strick requirements for the breeding of most horses. Eight years of jobs going over seas and a declining manufacturing have brought our country to this point. Our horses have suffered greatly because of this and NOT the closing of slaughter plants. Cheyenne made some fine points. Most of the breed associations want to be in on the blood money which is absolutely disgusting. At least this gal gave some thought about a process. That’s more than I can say about some of the people breeding horses in this country. Probably 1 stallion out of 2 or 3 hundred horses or more should only be stallions. The rest make wonderful geldings. Its just like everything else we have laws on the books and no
    one is there to enforce them. All the auctions should be strickly monitored and ownership listed other than a Killer Buyer. Most race tracks have the right idea. So many stalls are left empty and if someone wished to give up their horse, they place it in that stall. Perhaps something like this in the community would work too. It would be monitored by vets, the community and a representative from each breed. This would allow the papers to go with each horse instead of thrown away by the Killer Buyer or transfered to a different horse. Good job, it has started some brainstorming..

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  17. I applaud you, Cheyenne, for thinking this through and gaining a lot of savvy about the existing crisis in the equine industry in the process. I disagree with your approach, though. Americans are already being pushed almost to the point of revolution over Big Government being given more and more control over what we citizens can and can’t do. You probably don’t have a full grasp of the consequences of government control yet, and since you’re 14, having someone boss you around probably seems pretty normal. Freedon-loving adults don’t like to be treated like children, though, and your plan would take freedoms away from innocent people as well as the parties guilty of this crime against American equines that’s currently in progress.

    Hadn’t you rather be lead than pushed? Hadn’t you rather clean your room because there’s a reward for a job well done, instead of ‘having’ to do it because of punishment that will result if you don’t? Maybe you could refine your equine breeding standards plan some, so that a similar criteria is pursued, but design your plan so that people choose to follow it because of what they will gain from it, rather than being forced to comply- which would only result in people resenting it, defying it whenever possible, and endeavoring to do away with those guidelines at the next gathering of Congress.

    Theres’ one other problem with your theory. You base a lot of your plan on the concept that ‘flawed’ horses are the root of the problem, and that if all sorts of control regarding quality were in place, the problem would be solved. Maybe so- but another one would be created. Horse ownership would become an elitist hobby, with most horse-loving kids never getting to have a horse because of their rarity and resulting high cost. My first horse was a retired plow horse given to me by a neighbor. My second horse was a grade mare that my father traded a cow for. Several horses followed that were all very inexpensive, ‘plain ole horses’. I grew up to own some of the finest horses in the coutry- but had it not been for the opportunity to own inexpensive horses in my earlist days, I would probably never have owned a single one of the many I’ve had. I don’t think that children and low-income horse lovers should be expected to settle for the cast-offs of high dollar breeding programs. One of the horses you envision being produced would have to be very old, lame, or ill in order to be ‘passed down’ to a little girl who’s dreaming of her first horse. That’s just plain not fair.

    Horses are cheap because there are too many of them and because the economy is in very bad shape right now. In order for the value of horses to go up, the number of them has to go down. If the number goes down, there will be many fewer at-risk horses to figure out what to do with. If people in the horse industry can’t figure that out for themselves, they deserve to go broke and have to change jobs. Promoting responsible horse ownership and education are the keys, not creating so many rules that it would kill the fun of owning a horse.

    A very important part of any real solution is for each person to be active in rescuing, placing, and transporting the at-risk horses that we currently have in the US. If more people will actually work toward gettig these horses in to homes, the problem will feel much less overwhelming. If even one out of every 100 horse owners will take just one action to rescue, adopt, place, or transport an at-risk equine from danger to safety, there would be no horses to slaughter.

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  18. Cheyenne…

    Please read my post again…I was not referring to breeding a 500.00 trail horse, but as a pleasure/trail rider I don’t want to buy a 4000.00 horse to hack out on the trails. What you are proposing will drive up the cost of horses, which in itself isn’t a problem, but for those of us who don’t have that cash on hand, but do have the ability to care for a horse for it’s lifetime, your plan just needs some tweaking. The bottom line is this needs to come from the breeders and breed registries and people need to start learning how to live within their means. I am a rottweiler foster mom, for abandoned and abused rottie’s pulled from high kill shelters. I also have 2 of my own. I can only take one foster at a time, to be able to care for all three responsibly. I foster within my financial capabilities. I save lives one at a time, but to me it’s a life saved with a second chance to be loved. I know I am getting a little off mark, but please bear with me. It’s a common theme. Over 7 million dogs are inhumanely euthanized in American shelters across this country every year, through no fault of their own. Most of the municipal shelters get kick-back for every dog they kill. Our nations pups are in the same boat as our beloved horses. I do include our, supposedly protected, wild horses and burros. There is an old saying that the fish stinks from the head down… This applies here as well. 70-80% of all horse sent to slaughter are young and healthy American QH’s! I personally believe that number is actually higher than that. I have an 11 y/o QH that I refuse to register because I refuse to support AQHA and their pro-slaughter stance. AQHA is bought and paid for by special interests and corporate slimeballs. Horse slaughter is advantageous to them because, the more QH’s that end up on someone’s plate, the more they promote new breedings, the more revenue they make on new registrations of all new babies born….and everything else that goes with it. It’s time to find out who is paying off AQHA to support the horse slaughter industry and force them to change. The other breed specific organizations WILL follow suit, if AQHA is exposed for the true scumbags that they are. Within RT’s site…it’s about the horses and burros. In the broader, and even more frightening and far reaching scope, this is about power, greed, money, and massive corruption, with in America’s borders. This is a battle that needs to be won because the war is just beginning.

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    • Deb, beautifully said. I do believe we have to start somewhere and I believe making sure no slaughterhouses are reopend in the U.S. is the first, then to stop the transportation of our horses across our borders. We need to have horse loving volunteers at those cross points to stop anyone trying to cross to sell these horses. Then, we need to deal with the killer buyers and the offending auctions that are feeding this chain to the killer buyers. I think a horse loving volunteer auction house would be the answer — anyone wanting to purchase a horse MUST wait until all their credentials are checked, their home is inspected and making sure they are the registered owners of that home or that they give the boarding place that will board that horse, and that an inspection is made by one of the volunteers annually to make sure the horse is being taken care of responsibly. I know I would love to be a volunteer to make sure these horses are being kept in the manner which they deserve. And with eighty percent of Americans backing the anti slaughter this is a start. We need to do a mass media blitz to shame the Dept of Ag and the BLM for what they are doing and get more Americans to DEMAND our wild horses and burros are returned rightly to their home ranges AND MAKE SURE THIS SOB GOVERNMENT BUREAUCRACY NEVER COMES CLOSE TO DO WHAT THEY ARE PRESENTLY DOING AGAIN. We need to get rid of all the greedy people in our government and here I believe we need to make sure there is no green backs to government employees by big business. This is why big business becomes bad and this is a true example of same.

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  19. I have to give my opinion as I see it from a person who lives in the suburbs of Denver. Now I don’t know anything about breeding or even what a backyard breeder is. I do under stand the over breeding by organizations to get the perfect breed of horse.

    But here we have a lot of properties that were built in the 50’s up to the 70″s that are horse property. They range from 1/2 acre to 2 1/2 acre properties smack dab in the middle of town. And these communities can be found all over colorado. My husband and I sold our home (built in the 50’s) in June it was horse property 1/3 of an acre (now we never had horses-I have 2 sons not interested in horses-just cars and motorcycles), but a lot of younger people around us have horses. Us older folks had cutouts of buffalo, moose, deer and bears in our front yards, but the young folks have live horses~~~thats why we refer to horses as yard art around here.. We do have the largest number of pink horses that I have seen though. Now these horses are not your high dollar horses, just girls who love their horses, do to city building codes you can only build loafing sheds, most horses do not have enclosed buildings. But these horses are well taken care of, one would think that a horse in the city verses a horse in the country who would be better off. Well these little girls are not farm girls, horses are not livestock to them, along with the cats and dogs their horses are their pets. Most of the horses in our area never leave as one little girl moved on to a better horse, she sold her older horse to a younger girl up the street or around the corner. If a family had a hard ship we all pitched in as neighbors to help out. ~~~~Now if only expensive horses were bred how would these little girls ever afford this luxury, and I can tell you there are millions of these horses in this country– I agree with another sight — there are not unwanted horses, just horses that have not yet found their forever home. And maybe these little girls do not go on to be big money horse owners, but they learned the love of a horse, and take that with them for all time, and would never agree with slaughter. Kids today are conected in ways we could not even dream of when we were young and that builds life long lessons. My fear is if there is a limited supply of inexpensive horses-the qualifications to own a horse will be so strick that girls like this will not be able to have this luxury any more-here in Colorado the cat rescuses are getting so picky on there qualifications and not allowing people to adopt and the price for adoption getting so expensive that if someone advertises free kittens they are gone almost ammediatly, the other day I went to Murdocks and a lady and her kids had blue healer pups in the back of her car, for sale and she had a line -a line-of people wanting to buy one. I believe there are enough people in this country for all animals if we could just get the money grubbers out of the picture, because in the end it always seems to be about money not the animals, no matter what animal or organization we talk about.

    Now this is where I want to talk about country horses and city horses and all the pink horses we have–now there are blue horses, red horses, and horses of all different colors, but when I talk about colors I mean horses with pink ribbons in their manes and tails, pink halters, pink lead ropes, pink flymasks, pink blankets, pink leg and hoof protectors. And if you think these horses just stand in their front yards–no way–when home builders came in and bought land to build the 500 house areas, the people buying the houses demanded walking/jogging paths and bike paths–well because of all the horse propertys the cities made them add bridle paths, and here in the suburbs that is 10s of thousands of miles in paths–just 2 blocks form the home we sold you could pick up a brilde path that went from Golden(past the Coors brewery all the way to Aspen ski area). And every town has it’s horse associaltion, were on weekends they get together for gynkanas for all ages and all abilities and give out ribbons(you can see a 6 year old and grandma compete on the same horse) what I am saying is it is a family , a block, a community, and a city affair and the horse is building this for these young people and that should not be taken away through regulation. These horses are part of families and communities and we should never lose that in this country. These horses may just be yard art during the week, but on weekends the kids ride by on thier way to bridle paths or competions and always stop to talk or to wave(couple that with kids who don’t have horses who go by on skatboards with ipods and don’t even know you are there) It is a horse culture that many may not even know exists if they have not lived in an area like that. And horses out in large pastures may appear to be free, but I know that our yard art horses are never alone because every person that walks by has a carrot, a lump of sugar, or just a pat on the nose for them. Just want eveyone to know that horses work in ways that many poeple may not even know about, even smack dab in the city and even if they are only worth a couple hundred dollars. I believe that these $200.00 horses are just as loved and taken care of just as though they were expensive special breed horses and that should not be taken away from anyone who wants a horse. Just my thought for today. And I have never seen a baby horse in our area and we lived there for 39 years.

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    • Geri, how fortunate your children are to have all these horses in their close community. I always wanted a gray Arabian as a child of about twelve. I was promised one but due to my mother’s illness I never got that Arabian. I am now seventy years old, and have rescued three, one we are trying to save with laminitis, and two more I hope that will arrive in June or July that was starving in a pasture. These are exceptional animals and I know I could never afford thousands of dollars to afford a horse, but we must get the greed and the money hungry government agencies, the killer buyers, and bad auctions out of the way. The economy is not helping. IT’s too bad that we can’t get an non-profit organization going that would take all these animals that need loving homes and maybe, when things got better financially, their original owners might want them back. I know they would be so happy to know that a killer buyer did not get them. I drive by on the way to the sanctuary where I keep my three rescues and I cry every time I see the horses there because he is known to be a killer buyer. I drove by Saturdayon the freeway and there were many, many horses, maybe fifty, and it kills me to know that they may be gone in a matter of days or a week. We all know at one time these beautiful animals were part of a family and they did not deserve to end up where they are today. I live in Southern California and the price of hay is not $5.00, it may be $22.00 and the average joe is not able to afford the costs anymore. This is where we need help. Unfortunately, hay growers are also greedy because instead of keeping their prices in line, if one community because of drought, will pay more, than we all get “socked” because of those that will pay more. This has also caused the abundance of horses left to starve to death in a field, as my little grey Arabian with laminitis, endured or one horse at the sanctuary that was dropped next to a Southern California freeway. I don’t understand someone dumping their family member like this, even though it is a four legged equine. It makes me feel that was not a family member, but is something like an old piece of furniture, that can be discarded at will. We need to get an agency where someone can take their horse when they can no longer care for it. Maybe they could volunteer at the agency and know that in some way they are caring for their former pet. Just a thought. All I know it that this all has to stop and that our equines get what they deserve, a loving family that will care for them and love them.

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  20. I hope by the time Cheyenne is an adult, that things have changed significantly. At that time, I shall be riding off into the sunset (mentally if no other way. . . ) and this old world will keep on turning. Hopefully the likes of Cheyenne will carry the torch for the horses, and this will be more than just an essay contest for her as she navigates the choppy waters and heads out to the high seas of life.

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