“The greatest deterrent
to freedom are men and women of zeal, well-meaning, but
without knowledge or understanding.”
~Justice Louis Brandeis~

"People are so quick to defend their own agendas, but they so often fail to realize we must protect the rights of all if we are to continue to have any rights of our own."

Ranch meaning, in general, any real world dwelling probably not involving full care board. Kind of a rural voice of real horse owners, trainers, traders, auction owners, rodeo contractors, etc.. all of us who have taken a verbal beating and called greedy ass hats. Back at the Ranch contributors, moderators, subjects, and so on, are pro-horse, pro-owner, and pro-slaughter.
Back at the Ranch was formed by a group of like minded horse / livestock owners. It is a place for us to try to educate, a place to vent our frustrations with the current equine industry, a place to share humor and snark, and in general try to open the eyes of the public who seem to be anti-agriculture.We do have a section for comments of course, and if you would like to email us you can do so directly or through the contact us form. We like to hear from our readers. I hope you enjoy reading our blog as much as I enjoy managing it.
Ranch Manager

Monday, July 20, 2009

Pro-Horse / Pro- Horseman

There has been an ongoing battle between those who are anti slaughter and those who are pro slaughter, or pro horse. I view myself as Pro horse, and was recently taken to task by the moderator of an Anti Slaughter forum for it. Those on the "Anti" side are just that. Anti slaughter. And those on the "Pro" side, are...well, what are we, exactly? Are we FOR slaughter? I'm not for slaughter, any more than I am for euthanasia, or for the use of a gun, if you know how to shoot. What I AM for, is what is in the best interest of the horse, and the rights of each horse owner to make those decisions when the time comes. Thus, my choice of the term "Pro horse". The problem with Slaughter is that it has become an issue...."A dirty secret" according to the Anti Movement. Something we've hidden away. This is not true. Slaughter is part of the Equine Industry. It was never an issue before, nor was it a secret. We simply didn't realize it was something we were going to have to defend. To those who have been involved with horses for any length of time Slaughter is something that is part of the industry. Those who understand its place, also respect it. As in every industry, there are those who abuse it and that is unfortunate. But for the rest of us, it provides the base market price for our horses, and that is not a bad thing. A horse that has value is often times a horse that is taken care of. And a horse that is taken care of is a horse that is worth more money. The slaughter market also provides horse owners with a way to recoup some of their monetary investment should they need to do so. Now, I know, this is something that some do not like to discuss, but if we're going to face the facts and deal with reality, we need to deal with this. There are cases where, if the price of a horse cannot be recouped, another horse cannot be purchased. There are a lot of horses in need of a home, and to some of us, it seems unfair to deprive them of one because some people feel the only option any horse owner should have available is euthanasia. Most of us who have grown up with horses are aware of how things work if you take your horse to a sale. One of three things will most likely happen. 1) You will bring him back home because he doesn't sell, 2) A private buyer will buy him, or 3) a dealer, or kill buyer will buy him. In the case of option 3, most of us stills realize this does not guarantee a trip to slaughter. Many dealers as well as kill buyers often re-sell the horses they buy to private clients. And yes, some of the horses do in fact go to slaughter. It's a fact of life. Those of us who are Pro horse know we can give our horse a better chance of finding a new home if he is well broke, well mannered, and well cared for. Most of the good ones DO end up finding a place to go. In this economy, not all of them do, and that's a shame. We can only hope that with education and a better economy there will be less of them. Those horse owners who act in an irresponsible manner are an embarrassment to all of us, and we do have laws that deal with them. We should be very vocal about having those laws enforced. When people like these are prosecuted, and not allowed to own horses, we all win, especially the horses. We should be just as vocal in our wish to remain the person to decide what decisions are in the best interests of our horse, if we are responsible, knowledgeable owners. As the person providing the financial upkeep and daily care for our horse, we are the ones who know what is best for him in our unique situations. Since no one else is involved in the day to day decisions during our horse’s lives, what right do they have to interfere in end of life choices? As long as we are Pro horse, that is our right.
By: R.H 2


  1. Great write-up. Probably makes way too much sense for most of the "I luvs horsies" to understand, but there's always a glimmer of hope.
    Please, keep up the good work.

  2. I've loved horses and everything to do with them since I could barely walk. That said, I'm in WA state and any time anyone would say a horse was going to Stanwood, I knew it was going to slaughter.(slaughter plant was in Stanwood, WA) That was a fact of life, not a hidden dirty secret. Do I like it, no, but it is a choice we all must have available to us to keep our industry alive and our rights as livestock owners.

  3. Bozo! You talk about taking the time to train a horse and caring for it so it has some value and then turn around and sell it at a sales barn and if a kill buyer buys it then... oh well... thems the breaks, right? What about the poor horse that has given you his all and then you dispose of him like trash to have his throat slit and left to bleed dry on a meat hook. The only thing you care about is your own fat ass! You should be the one on the meat hook you bunch of selfish pigs

  4. Anonymous....Not all horses sold at a sale barn or to a Kill Buyer for that matter end up at Slaughter. Simply taking a horse to a sale doesn't equal disposing of him "like trash to have his throat slit and left to bleed dry on a meat hook". Many horses find a different home, and many that go to Kill buyers go to private clients, or to other homes.
    More disturbing than your graphic description of the slaughter process is the picture of a horse paddling in the sand desperately trying to get up just one more time in search of food or water, and finding those skeletal remains because it was left to fend for itself and slowly and painfully starved to death. In case you missed that....this was a "rescue horse" from 3 Strikes. How about THEM breaks? Guess that horse won't be in need of a re-rescue any time soon......

  5. Hey Anonymous...or shall I call YOU Bozo? Obviously you didn't read the post very well or your tunnel vision and lack of comprehension skills got in the way. If you are so against slaughter come on back here often and learn the right ways to keep a horse from being a slaughter bound candidate!

  6. Is it just me, or is it a coincidence that when those who disagree with the Pro side post, they can't seem to do it without name calling and profanity?
    I'm always hearing that the Pro side is comprised of horrid, nasty people, and yet the Anti side seems to have the market cornered on foul language, threats, and the inability to remain civil.
    I was on another forum reading a few days back, and this blog was mentioned. As unbelievable as this may sound, one of the posters was making reference to an injury that would render those who are Pro horse unable to walk, having to wear diapers, etc. Something to the effect of a shot to "L1". And she was congratulated for being a "warrior". Frankly, I am constantly amazed at what passes for humanity.
    I will be interested to see if there are those with opposing views who can state them without the lack of decorum that is considered proper behavior for many when discussing this issue.