Today, May 29th, we celebrate the birthday of Cloud, son of the stunning, black stallion Raven and Phoenix, the palomino mare, who is 21 years young this spring.
Seventeen years ago today, Anni Williams and I were on Tillett Ridge in the Pryor Mountains engrossed in filming a young stallion trying to breed his father’s newly won mare. His father, Opposite, was off playing with nearby bachelors. The filly had successfully fought off the two year-old when his father returned to sniff his son, and I guessed that this young son would soon be “asked” to leave the family.
British author and ex-cavalryman J.N.P. Watson once said, “The horse is so lacking in malice and yet so dutiful and grave that when he suffers, it makes man so ashamed for the human race.”
Our horses have been willing warriors in many wars started by men. In the first world war, about 1.5 million horses were used as cavalry, and an estimated 500,000 died.
Although recent polls indicate that a vast majority of Americans are opposed to the slaughtering of U.S. horses for human consumption, a small minority of individuals have launched a backdoor misinformation campaign designed to re-open US horse slaughter facilities and in the worst case scenario factory farm horses for food.