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Inhumane Horse Slaughtering in Quebec

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What CHDC Found

Pasture to Plate gives a tiny glimmer of hope, stating “that some of the workers, and the shooter in particular, seem to have been provided with training on horse behaviour…” That is small comfort in an overall horrifying report. Page after page cites examples such as these:

  • “As each day progressed and the stun box became more covered in blood, the horse became more resistant to enter it, so had to be forced from behind with the use of what appeared to be a whip (footage shows a whip as the primary driving tool with plastic paddles also used in the stun box).”
  • “Some of the horses in the slaughter footage were slick with sweat or had dried sweat marks, indicating a high level of stress or that the holding area was not temperature controlled.”
  • “Most disturbing is that many of the horses were able to push their heads out the front of the stun box and peer into the butchering area where the horses before them were being hung, bled out and butchered. Many horses appeared increasingly agitated and frightened after doing so.”

An ironic counterpoint to CHDC’s revelations about conditions in Canadian horse slaughterhouses is an editorial that appeared on December 4th in the Texas Star-Telegram. Apparently nine states have passed resolutions calling for the return of horse slaughtering facilities. The opinion piece reports:

Since the ban, the GAO also reported, there has been a dramatic increase in reports of horse neglect, a trend expected to get even worse in this down economy. The American Quarter Horse Association had argued in 2006 that processing of unwanted horses was “a necessary aspect of the equine industry, because it provides a humane euthanasia alternative for horses that might otherwise continue a life of discomfort and pain, or inadequate care or abandonment.”

No Longer Needed, Then What?

The horses are ridden, raced or worked until they are no longer useful or wanted. Then they are sent off to the slaughterhouse, with owners hoping to recoup a bit of the cost by selling them as meat. Once desirable assets, the horses are simply live carcasses, a burden to be fed and cared for.

Animals discarded as thoughtlessly as last year’s cell phones are an indictment of our ethical and moral standards. Animal welfare organizations and animal advocates do their best to draw attention to their plight, but until we embrace the need to treat our fellow creatures with respect, stories like the ones filmed by CHDC will continue.

Related Care2 Stories

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Donít Let U.S. Horse Slaughterhouses Return

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10:32PM PDT on Oct 17, 2014

Kristi D., you rock! I could not have said it better myself.

I think that the real problem here is that our government puts dollars ahead of everything else. What we need is a new system - one that is based on compassion instead of greed. People need to let go of their fear, fear of losing jobs and being poor.

8:58AM PDT on Oct 17, 2014

Let's do not forget, the slaughter of most animals is inhumane and torturous. The difference here is the animals have to be trucked so far for slaughter whereas other livestock does not. The slaughter of horses is no different for me than the slaughter of cows, sheep, goats, chickens or pigs. The majority of them are treated horrifically as well. Are we humans so desensitized that we think all sentient beings cannot smell the blood of those being butchered ahead of them? The only reason I do not support a slaughterhouse being opened here is we do not humanely slaughter these currently being killed here. How is it people feel it is fine to buy the cheapest chicken, pork or beef at the grocery store but find it appalling to hear about dogs or horses being slaughtered? Why do you think the meat is so cheap? Because they are mass produced without a thought being given to the fact that they are living creatures!

And they say being a vegan is a fad or we try to come across as superior? No, we just feel as if ALL SENTIENT BEINGS should be respected and not tortured for human gain. Do not even get me started on the environmental degradation issues related to factory farming.

7:02AM PDT on Oct 16, 2014

Oh! Dear Lord! This is too cruel to even absorb into the human mind.
This should never at any time for any reason ever be allowed.
I am disgusted at some of the things that are being used against animals that feel with intelligence to feel with their nerves. Have we actually become substandard in our feelings towards animals with no care at all? I am ashamed to be called a member of the human race and allow this to continue. It must END!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

4:08AM PDT on Oct 16, 2014

All horse slaughter is viciously cruel and inhumane. There is no possible justification for it, ever.

6:30AM PDT on Oct 15, 2014

OMG !!! poor horses !!!

5:31AM PDT on Oct 15, 2014

How can this inhumanity still exist in this modern world?

4:56PM PDT on Oct 8, 2014


12:29PM PDT on Oct 8, 2014

I disagree with the slaughter of horses especially for their meat. These poor horses are starved almost to death to begin with and then put through further abuse bu using stun guns.This is cruel and totally inhumane, and must be stopped. Torture is cruelty and persons carrying out these acts are criminals!

6:35AM PST on Jan 20, 2013

wish i was there with a bolt gun, guess what id use it on?? not the animals but the ones using it on the animals. id tell them how do you like how it feels?? grrrrr

6:30AM PST on Jan 20, 2013

torah i agree wish theyd suffer the same fate. no remorse for the wrong they do

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