Horse News

Humane Society- Oklahoma Horse Slaughter Bill a Grizzly Crutch

Source: By Jeanne LeFlore of the McAlester News-Capital

“The horse slaughter industry is not around to rescue horses,”
(Click on Image to Enlarge)

(Click on Image to Enlarge)

McALESTER — A Pittsburg County farmers and ranchers union recently lobbied for equine processing legislation that passed a Senate committee unopposed on Monday.

Although the legislation passed the Senate committee, animal rights activists such as the Humane Society of the United States say the bill legalizing horse slaughter in Oklahoma is nothing more than a “grizzly crutch.”

The Pittsburg County American Farmers and Ranchers/Oklahoma Farmers Union sponsored a lobbying event at the Oklahoma State Capitol Building on March 13, according to Lacie Wedel, communications coordinator for the union.

The AFR/OFU is part of an agriculture and wildlife coalition showing support for HB 1999 and SB 375, authored by Rep. Skye McNeil (R-Bristow) and Sen. Mark Allen (R-Arkoma), Wedel said.

Local legislators Sen. Larry Boggs and Rep. Donnie Condit voted for their respective bills. Rep. Brian Renegar abstained from a vote, citing constitutional privilege. None of three replied to inquiries for comment for this story by presstime.

The legislation amends the Oklahoma Meat Inspection Act by allowing horses, mules or other equine to be transported, manufactured, processed, packed, sold or prepared in Oklahoma as long as the meat is sold on the international market.

Laice said the proposed legislation would provide a “desperately needed outlet” for unwanted horses in Oklahoma.

On Monday, the bill moved forward after members of the Senate agriculture committee voted 9-0 in support of the measure.

Speaking for the union’s support on the measure, Wedel said when horse owners can no longer care for aging or unwanted animals, current options are limited.

The care and feeding of horses is costly and when owners can’t afford an old or sick horse, they have limited or no options, Wedel said.

“Many owners turn horses out to seek food on their own and when neglected or abandoned, these animals die of starvation, illness or predators and become a financial strain on counties forced to care for them,” sshe said.

Union President Terry Detrick said the legislation helps to solve that problem.

“Oklahoma stands poised to take a significant step forward in the care and handling of horses in this country,” Detrick said.

“This bill benefits our state’s rural citizens, business owners and agriculturists, and provides for the responsible, humane harvesting of these horses.”

He said horses that are not abandoned are often transported to Mexico or Canada for slaughter.

He also said legalized state-run and federally regulated slaughter is the answer.

“State-inspected horse slaughter is an all-encompassing solution for the current issue.”

Meanwhile, the proposed legislation has come under fire by the Humane Society of the United States.

Cynthia Armstrong is the state director of USHS.

“We are strongly opposed to this legislation for a number of reasons,” Armstrong said.

“Its a grizzly crutch and it actually perpetuates over-breeding and owner irresponsibility.”

She said legalizing equine slaughter is about money.

“The horse slaughter industry is not around to rescue horses,” Armstrong said. “It’s an economic endeavor.”

And she said the legislation is the not answer to horse neglect.

“Horse neglect occurred when slaughtering was legal,” she said.

She said neglect occurs because of the irresponsibility of the horse owners.

“Legislators need to look at the root cause of the problem which is in part, overbreeding,” Armstrong said.

“They need to consider amending breeding practices.”

She also said slaughtering horses for human consumption is inhumane and creates a serious health risk to consumers.

Although legislation prevents Oklahomans from eating horse meat, it does not prevent the horse meat from being sold to other countries for consumption, she said.

“Its irresponsible to say that the meat is not fit for us to consume yet we can sell it to other  countries for that purpose.”

“If it’s not safe for humans in the US how is it safe for any human consumption?” Armstrong said.

Contact Jeanne LeFlore at

Click (HERE) if You Care to Make a Stand Against this Cruelty

37 replies »

    • I don’t think you should have directed this you tube to the public. This deranged person does not need an audience. If this did happen I am surprised he was not arrested for animal abuse.
      He abused that animal, he killed it for public entertainment. Isn’t this abuse? Where is PETA with this case of abuse???


      • I didn’t direct it. the guy in this video is named tim sapporita, there was an article today that where he said that he was ready to buy horses for that roswell plant.


  1. I think it’s time to pass the SAFE act we need to get it passed quickly before sue wallis gets it, the good news is that we have obama helping us out, think the republicans paying for this bill to be blocked need to be arrested.


    • Betcha ALEC – the American Legislative Exchange Council of corporations and their (bought) state legislators are behind horse slaughter in OK. You know, the people who want to tell you what to eat by dominating the market with processed food (GMOs, frankenfoods, pink slime “chicken nugget” type products) to ensure you will end up at their medical-industrial complex buying from Big Pharma to try to reverse the effect of that “food.”

      Also apparently, where there has been horse slaughter, as in Europe, there has been an unconscionable history of co-mingling that meat with beef. It is all ground up with a multitude of animals anyway so who cares, right? WRONG! Show that you will no longer be a pawn who just mindlessly goes along with this agenda by boycotting their grisly “products.”


  2. In addition to horse meat for export, Oklahoma wants to expand a bio-medical research industry where experiments on animal “products” including “donor horse serum” is a lucrative market. This material is drawn from horses just prior to slaughter.

    Bio med has deep pockets to buy legislators (with campaign donations). Look for who has collected these types of donations in Oklahoma using “open” or other political watch dog organizations to see who is compromised, and who has a direct conflict of interest. What seems illogical and even evil to the rest of us – slaughtering horses to export the meat – may just be cold blooded business as usual to those accustomed to using animals.


      • Naziism is alive and well in Oklahoma-Dettrick’s “all encompassing solution” bearing an eerie resemblance to the “Final Solution” of Adolf Hitler. Are there any decent Oklahomans and how are they silent?


      • I have to jump in here, Sarah, and answer with a very strong, “YES, there are plenty of decent people who live in Oklahoma!”. That comes from a Texan who fought alongside many others, for years, to get the two plants shut down in our state.

        This fight has nothing to do with the citizens of Oklahoma but instead it is a battle with bloated politicians, corrupt lobbyists and Big Ag. I have witnessed, first hand, the ire of the good folks in Oklahoma at our press conference, two weeks ago, in OK City…they ain’t happy.

        This is the time where we need to stand WITH the citizens of Oklahoma and not alienate them.

        To take a more global perspective, are you happy with the path that our entire country is being lead down…I think not but does that make us as people bad, no…it only means that we are out of control and we need to get back into the saddle, again, and get this horse on the right trail.

        So please, let us not pick on the people of Oklahoma, Wyoming or Oregon where individual blights to our species live. Instead let’s stand together and put an end to this tyranny.

        Please stop by and add your voice:


      • All-RT Fitch Hello Mr. Fitch-My point-hopefully well-taken, is that Hitler was elected to office by a country (including Jewish businessmen, by the way) wooed by Hitler’s commitment to the economic growth of Germany. (reminiscent of Romney’s political chat about the profit of big business being the engine of the US’ economy.) Terry Dettrick, talking of his “solution”, is appealing to the same mass mindset in Oklahoma (there has to be a scapegoat and an easy out) that was the basis for the rise of fascismin Germany and the extermination of the Jews, Poles, Catholics, etc. As long as the average person or business in Oklahoma or New Mexico does not see economic ruin from this insanely inhumane and immoral project they will continue to place horse activists in the minority, rather than the majority.
        The majority of Oklahomans and New Mexicans must take a stand against corporate interests here and I am very dissapointed at their silence. Again, I say pressure should be brought to bear. I have written to Drysdal’es (in Tulsa) and told them I WILL NOT BUY from them unless they take a stand against slaughter. Others should do the same.


  3. Do they think that we are deaf and blind outside their hallowed halls? Information is flying around the internet about the lack of truth in horses being turned out to fend for themselves or dying because people can’t afford to feed them – and it’s been shown with PICTURES that the horses showing up at auctions are healthy and FAT (since they go by the pound, the prices are higher!). While I know I’m preaching to the choir here (LOL), I just find it so incredibly insulting that they aren’t even changing their presentation of information – and we already know they are lying! They really DO think they are above us and can do whatever they want!!


  4. I can’t get past any so called journalist that waves the animal “RIGHTS” red flag in any story, especially in the first 2 paragraphs…..this doesn’t p o you readers?!? Does me.

    The story is Ka-rap.

    The HSUS response is Ka-rap.

    The legislators are Ka-rap.

    And the other legislators are bona fide COWARDS!

    I did learn one thing, the cowards in Okie City won’t eat it, but by gum…..they will sell it. Hypocrites.

    What a hoot!


    • I was just thinking….the best slogan for any US slaughter house of US equines should be, “We don’t eat it and our local neighbors can’t either. But we sell to the rest of the World!”

      Short version….”W can’t eat it…but we can sell it to YOU!”

      Now there is a slogan to sink your teeth into. Yum!


  5. I think there should also be a law against bills that allow horse slaughter, I think sue wallis needs to be exposed and impeached


  6. This whole mess is just ridiculous. It says so much about the people who (try to) run the country. Here’s the real deal…. if you can’t afford horses, don’t have horses. If you do have them, it’s not okay to just set them loose. If you do set them loose, you should have your a$$ fined. If you’re breeding horses, stop. Why are the politicians making the horses pay the price for the stupidity, greed, and irresponsible behaviour of some humans? I have lost faith in government’s ability to practice critical thinking and make proactive wise choices. And yes, I am Canadian, but lemmetellya, our government is just as stupid, assbackwards, and corrupt. I hope Obama has the common sense to set this all straight, but he might be outnumbered by the idiots.


    • Do you know there are special write-offs in our tax code for horse breeders? It is called the “Bluegrass Boondoggle.” Closing this particular loophole would save the federal government $126 million per yer. That would cause less breeding, especially of race horses, a vulnerable group for slaughter. Does our government have the will to do this?


      • Interesting information on Bluegreass Boondoggle…Thank you for sharing Judy…. Race horses seem to be one of the largest groups of unwanted horses when they are no longer valuable.
        I use to own one that raced in his earlier years before I purchased him. One of the fastest horses I’ve ever ridden.
        Race horses have so much to offer a potential new owner……..The ban will stop these knuckleheads who over breed them to toss them aside like garbage aftwards…..


      • Yes, Robyn, a ban on horse slaughter will be a dis-incentive for over breeding. Then again, taxpayers should not have to fund this irresponsible behavior by giving horse breeders tax breaks.


      • Good points both Sara and Judy….in agreement with you on this.. we need an alternative for people who can no longer afford their horses…the cost to euthanize and dispose is expensive for a sick or old horse we need affordable services………
        I know what it costs in my area of Colorado to put down a sick horse about 450.00 to euthanize and pick up/disposal where they end up at the land fill designed for horses.

        We do have some options of rescuefor horses that are unwanted. The Dumb Friends League opened up a rescue center for horses near my home and it’s a lovely place. They train them and help people adopt them.

        Many horses are not trained those seem to be the problem because people will adopt or buy a good horse they can ride and use..

        I saw ad ad on Craigslist where a few people were willing to take over your unwanted horse train it and sell it.


  7. Unfortunately, this rag does not have a comment capability, so I sent the “journalist” this note—not that you guys need to read it.

    Madame—I hope you do not imagine yourself any sort of investigative reporter, for you have abjectly failed in reporting this story.
    Horses in the US are uniformly treated with drugs BANNED for use in food animals. The use of Phenylbutazone, a anti-inflammatory which causes aplastic anemia in humans, is especially common in racehorses whose owners deem them no longer a worthwhile investment. ONE DOSE of this drug disqualifies an animal for use as human food, and there is no allowable withdrawal period. Most sport and pleasure horse have also received in their lives wormers, pain meds and a raft of other drugs clearly labeled “not for use in food animals” It is MUCH more than a political scandal, or a “need for humane “processing”—notice how they always avoid “slaughter or killing” in the texts supporting this business? I am shocked with your blithe dismissal of a subject you do not seem to have investigated very deeply. Where is the profit, by the way, in skinny, abandoned horses? The meat is sold by the pound and a poor yield is a poor payoff.
    American horse slaughter plants were driven to close by the horrific conditions endured, not only by horses, but by the towns where these plants were located. Business prospects withered, sewerage systems overflowed with blood despite complaints from municipal authorities, great dumpsters of offal, hides and bones stood in the open attracting vermin, taxes were not paid by these European owned, taxpayer subsidized outlaw abattoirs, and the only people who would work in such soul numbing operations were illegal aliens and former convicts. If you doubt me, check the reams of documentation accumulated by the little town of Kaufman TX which endured this horse slaughter blight for decades before finally shutting it down. Here is the link,
    The horse slaughter industry is driven by demand overseas and overbreeding schemes in the US by breed registries using slaughter as a culling mechanism for overproduction. Members of these associations are advised to support slaughter. The breed registries counsel how to shelter income with the loss write-off from horses not deemed perfect. It is the puppy mill counterpart in the horse world. There are over 900 pages of FOIA (freedom of information act) documents compiled by our own USDA of slaughter plants showing horrific abuse of horses in the slaughter pipeline, from animals arriving with legs ripped off in shipment to eyes dangling to pregnant mares sprawled on the killing floor with the foal cut from their abdomen as they are still writhing. “Humane processing”, eh?? All of these just mentioned conditions are a violation for slaughter for human consumption. Whether you are concerned about the welfare issues—which many here are clearly not—the contamination of the meat supply is of great import. Phenylbutazone was once used experimentally for humans till it was found to cause cancer. The great majority of the horsemeat exported from Mexico and Canada is contaminated by this drug and others—it is not tested and the medication tracking of horses in not done. Do not put great store by the EU Equine “Passport System” either, as there has been ample evidence the system is corrupt, passport numbers being traded on the black market and the oversight is full of holes.
    You have given the media the desultory black eye it often deserves for being completely unscientific and biased. Susan Rudnicki, Los Angeles, CA


  8. They talk about the only horses or burros that they kill are old or unwanted. If that is the case, then why do the round up the wild horses. They are not old or unwanted! I think that they need to get their stories right. I watch what happens in a slaughter house and still tear up at what they do to the horses. The ones that they hammered in the head were not old, they fought to live and were repeatedly hit in the head til they could not stand then they slit their throats! How can we allow this to happen? Horses were here to help us and we turn around and let them suffer! If the other Countries still eat our horses, I hope that they get sick and suffer worse then the horses did !!!


    • All! Another thought occurred to me re creating a grass roots movement designed to re-focus the fight against slaughter into a pro-business movement-why not contact Dude Ranch Associations in OK,New Mexico,Wyoming, Oregon, etc and suggest they advertise proudly as ranches of the “New West”- that is, a West positioned against slaughter, against violence, and pro the protection of land and wildlife. I believe in, and have written to my own legislators in support offederal legislation which will put a end to this gruesome business but ultimately local Western industries must be convinced that economics are on the side of preserving life.


      • Joel Salatin’s Polyface farms are a great example of a christian capitalist chauvinist making money while producing healthy meat from happy animals while restoring the ecosystem. Horses are a bit different, but English racehorses often race (steeplechases require mature and experienced horses) into their teens. Public pressure is what will change the situation. The racing industry is vulnerable right now, so it is a good time to push.


      • I also have to emphasize that you all need to offer pragmatic alternatives to horse slaughter if you truly want to change things. The reason the slaughter houses have raw materials is because there are thousand of unwanted horses. Ranchers and horse owners don’t like watching them slowly starve to death any more than you do.
        Outrage might motivate you, but anger and insults discredit not only the individual, but your whole argument. Focus on and support positive local alternatives as well as federal legislation. There are programs offering to geld colts at reduced costs. Raise money for horse rescue organizations to train as well as feed their stock. The Jockey Club is considering banning owners, trainers, and breeders that send horses to slaughter. More horse registries should do the same. The Livestock Boards could work towards getting old and injured animals to zoos and wildlife sanctuaries to feed their large predators. That would remove tons of horseflesh from flow of commerce AND trash. If there are no horses to kill, there wont be money to be made.. If there is no money, there will be no slaughter house.


      • Running a permanent sanctuary for 60 equines, with a natural horsemanship progam for ages 2-adult-and a specific focu s on special needs students, I am already offering a pragmatic solution. 60% of our animalsare seniors, 30% pulled directly from feedlots-all unwanted elsewhere. When I offer ideas for those Western states enmeshed in conflictover “what to do” about “uwanted” horses I speak from experience. The industry must take a stand here-and, as has been suggested, reject many of its own time-honored practices. Dettrick’s remarks must be questioned just as other public figures are questioned routinely about racist or other derogatory comments-rather than take offense perhaps it is time to learn from history and recognize negative patterns in our culture that keep us from moving forward.


      • I also have to emphasize that you all need to offer pragmatic alternatives to horse slaughter if you truly want to change things. The reason the slaughter houses have raw materials is because there are thousand of unwanted horses. Ranchers and horse owners don’t like watching them slowly starve to death any more than you do.
        Outrage might motivate you, but anger and insults discredit not only the individual, but your whole argument. Focus on and support positive local alternatives as well as federal legislation. There are programs offering to geld colts at reduced costs. Raise money for horse rescue organizations to train as well as feed their stock. The Jockey Club is considering banning owners, trainers, and breeders that send horses to slaughter. More horse registries should do the same. The Livestock Boards could work towards getting old and injured animals to zoos and wildlife sanctuaries to feed their large predators. That would remove tons of horseflesh from flow of commerce AND trash. If there are no horses to kill, there wont be money to be made.. If there is no money, there will be no slaughter house.


      • Agreed saraannon. Promote Equine Sanctuaries/Rescues. Most communities in the west have these. They are the “New West.” They offer the alternative and are a resource for gelding clinics.


    • saraannon…hats off to you for your work saving and doing what you can for our horses……’s very sad too many untrained horses at risk for the slaughter ride to hell……….


  9. The Pro horse slaughter monsters “want to have an outlet for old and sick horses”. That is total nonsense, they want young healthy horses and will steal them if they can. If this goes through there will be such a big mess. These Pro horse slaughter have one thing on their brains and that is $$$$$$ at all costs. They don’t care about anything or anyone just their $$$$$. Please fight this.


  10. Sent a little email to Ms. LaFlore which she probably wont read. There obviously was not place for comments at the end of her article. Did suggest she do some more research, etc. The thing is, there was a little picture & paragraph about therapeutic riding on the same page!!! Mentioned that too.


  11. Sarah Rabinowitz Mognoni, I live in New Mexico, about an hour down stream from the horse slaughter plant that is planning to open in the next couple of weeks. There are many of us in NM that are fighting like crazy to keep this barbaric travesty from entering our society. We are doing the right thing! We cannot get feedback from our Governor, whom wrote a letter in the beginning that she was against horse slaughter, but is now MIA. Our State Representatives will not acknowledge us or communicate. They are all cowards hiding out! They want their cake and eat it too, by appeasing us “THE VOTERS” and residents with their public denouncement that they are against this horrific proposition; yet, not standing behind their word and fighting with us. Those of us that are fighting this very emotional issue are in direct contact with the Oklahoma group that is fighting as hard if not harder to keep this inhumane practice out of their state as well. The problem is not the people, residents, average Joe…the problem is the GREEDY, UNETHICAL politicians across the country. In NM we thought we had it beat, if you are watching/reading any of the news in these two states you will find ONE constant factor in both states. SUE WALLIS! This greedy, worthless, inhuman, waste of air has infiltrated every state in the United States trying to get her greedy, fat, greasy fingers on the horses of the United States. If you google 12-CV-1083-JCG-CG Sue Wallis and her disgusting cronies filed a suit in the United States District Court for the district of New Mexico in support of Valley Meat Co. to force horse slaughter down our throats. Those of us who own horses and love horses will fight this to the end.


    • Bonnie-Do not be without faith-I am with you 100 percent-it is hoped that our more mature European partners will finally convince the thugs trying to reopen in NM etc that shortly there will be no market for horsemeat from this country and that the Federal government will do its job in ending slaughter altogether. However-in the states where plants are proposed, I do strongly suggest a parallel movement to re-define the tourism industry, for instance, as promoting the preservation of animal life which is the point Tom Vilsack has been making. Maintaining animals’ lives is, in short, good for the economic growth of your state. Start an ad campaign “New Mexico-Where horses live free!” Put the Rick de Santos folks out of business and make them obsolete! Maybe you will get your Governor’s attention. We at Lab Hill, horses, donkeys, mules, goats and humans, are routing for you!


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