Equine Welfare News

  • AHC Update: Executive Actions on Immigration and the Industry

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    AHCThe following is an announcement from the American Horse Council.

    Recently, President Trump issued several executive orders relating to increased immigration enforcement and border security. These actions will impact many employers, including those in the racing and showing segments of the horse industry, even those that rely on legal foreign workers.

    For many years horse farms, horse shows, trainers and others have had difficulty recruiting American workers. This has forced many to rely on foreign workers and utilize both the H-2B non-agricultural and H-2A agricultural temporary foreign worker programs to meet their labor needs even though these programs are often extremely burdensome to use.  Additionally, many of the workers employed in the industry may lack legal status.

    Most foreign workers in the industry are directly responsible for the care of the horses upon which the entire horse industry is dependent. Without these workers to raise, train, and care for the industry’s horses, many other jobs held by Americans not only in the horse industry, but also supported by the horse industry will be in jeopardy.

    Generally speaking, increased enforcement, increased competition for legal workers and greater demand for H-2B and H-2A workers will make it more difficult for horse industry employers to fill many positions.

    Click Here To Read the Article on AHC

  • AHC Update: Horse Protection Act Bill Opposed by AHC Reintroduced

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    AHCThe following is an announcement from the American Horse Council.

    Representative Scott DesJarlais (R-TN) has reintroduced the Horse Protection Amendments Act (H.R. 1338). This is the exact same bill DesJarlais introduced last year to amend the Horse Protection Act (HPA).   The bill would create a single Horse Industry Organization (HIO) that would be responsible for enforcement of the HPA. This bill is opposed by the AHC.

    The HPA was enacted in 1970 and prohibits the showing, sale, or transport of a horse that has been sored. Soring is an abusive practice used by some horse trainers in the Tennessee Walking Horse, Spotted Saddle Horse, and Racking Horse industry to intentionally cause pain in a horse’s forelegs and produce an accentuated show gait for competition.

    The AHC opposes the DesJarlais bill because it would not reduce the prevalence of soring in the Tennessee Walking Horse, Spotted Saddle Horse, and Racking Horse industry and does not address most of the issues raised in a USDA Office of Inspector General Report on the HPA enforcement program.  In fact it could exacerbate the situation by placing responsibility for enforcement of the HPA more firmly in the hands of a walking horse-controlled HIO.

    Details of the Horse Protection Amendments Act and AHC concerns about the bill can be found here.

    The bill has 9 co-sponsors; Chuck Fleischmann (R-TN), John Duncan (R-TN), Marsh Blackburn (R-TN), Hal Rogers (R-KY), Diane Black (R-TN), Andy Barr (R-KY), David Roe(R-TN), James Comer (R-KY) and Bret Guthrie (R-KY).

    The AHC continues to support the Prevent All Soring Tactics Act (PAST Act) that would strengthen the HPA and prevent the soring of Tennessee Walking Horses, Spotted Saddle Horses, and Racking Horses.

    Click Here To Read the Article on AHC

  • Cabin Fever Auction for SYALER – Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue!

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    The following is from the Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue.

    Please visit our fundraising auction page to see the directions for bidding and pictures of all the great items and services that are up for auction!

     

    Thanks in advance for your participation. The auction generates a lot of interest (and competitive bidding!), and the proceeds allow us to carry out our mission of helping donkeys and mules in need. In 2016 we placed 40 long ears – a new record!

    If there are any questions you may reach me atsyaauction2017@gmail.com or (413) 559-8414 (evenings).
    Sincerely,

    Joan Gemme
    Vice-President

  • Trump Administration to Rollback Clean Water Act Rule

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    AHCThe following is an announcement from the American Horse Council.

    In 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (Corps) issued a new regulation to redefine “Waters of the U.S.” under the Clean Water Act (CWA). The Trump administration has announced it will instruct the EPA and the Corps to review and reconsider the 2015 rule known as the Waters of the United States rule or WOTUS. The rule was opposed by the American Horse Council (AHC) and other agricultural groups.

    The CWA regulates discharges of pollutants into navigable rivers and lakes, collectively known as “Waters of the U.S.” The 2015 rule redefined “Waters of the U.S.,” in a manner that significantly expanded the waters subject to the requirements of the CWA. The CWA includes exemptions for agriculture, however the AHC and other agricultural groups had serious concerns regarding the 2015 rule and the AHC believed it could negatively impact horse farms, ranches and racetracks in all parts of the country.

    During the original comment period, the AHC asked the EPA and Corp to withdrawal the rule in its entirety and supported Congressional efforts to block the rule.  The AHC supports the decision to review and reconsider the 2015 rule.

    If you have any questions, please contact the AHC at info@horsecouncil.org

    Click Here To Read the Article on AHC

  • AHC Update: Save the Date for the AHC’s Annual Meeting & National Issues Forum

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    AHCThe following is an announcement from the American Horse Council.

    Where can you find people involved in every segment of the equine world working together to advance our industry? How can you find out what projects and initiatives are being worked on in every corner of the equine industry?

    The answer: the American Horse Council’s (AHC) Annual Meeting & National Issues Forum, sponsored by Luitpold Animal Health! Save the Date on your calendars forJune 11-14, 2017 at the Washington Court Hotel in Washington, DC.

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  • SYALER Cabin Fever Auction

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    The following is from the Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue.

    The February doldrums are upon us, and at Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue, we have a full house of donkeys and mules snuggled down in beds of fluffy shavings with piles of hay keeping them warm and cozy as they wait for new homes. In the meantime, the humans of Save Your Ass are keeping busy with their care, as well as planning our 2017 fundraisers to support the rescue in the upcoming year.

    Our next event, which is guaranteed to bring some fun into the dark days of winter, is the annual Cabin Fever Online Auction which will be held from March 5th to March 12th on our special Facebook Auction page. We are reaching out to you to ask if you would consider donating an item to this 2017 event. Over the years we’ve auctioned off a little bit of everything – travel, art, handcrafted items, services, gift certificates, produce, baked goods, clothing, equine items, animal training, collectibles, household items – you name it! We welcome and appreciate all donations, large, medium or small.

    The auction generates a lot of interest (and competitive bidding!), and the proceeds allow us to carry out our mission of helping donkey and mules in need. In 2016 we placed 40 long ears – a new record!

    If you are interested in making a donation of any kind, please email Joan Gemme with the following information.

    Deadline for donation submission is February 28.

    1. Item Name
    2. Short description
    3. Donor Name
    4. Website (if applicable)
    5. Donor email
    6. Item Value (including a rough shipping cost)
    7. Opening Bid

    Please attach a photo, logo, or any other image that will appear with your item. As in the past, we request that the donors be willing to arrange shipping, delivery or pickup of their item to the winning bidder.

    Please email Joan Gemme with any questions, or phone at 413-559-8414 evenings.

    Thank you for your support!

    Click Here To Visit SYALER

  • Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue Update: Slick, etc.

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    The following is from the Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue.

    We have had a busy start to the new year here at the rescue. Lots of new animals have joined the herd. They will all be brought up to date on their vaccinations, get a clean bill of health from our veterinarian, then you will see them available for adoption on our website.

    All of the animals have been wonderfully healthy and have been getting through the winter just fine… until last Sunday morning. When I looked out the window, cup of coffee in hand, just observing the mules hanging out across the driveway in the paddock closest to the house I noticed that my favorite rescue mule Slick was holding a hind leg up. He put it down and lifted his other hind leg, put that down and did the same with both front legs, then back to lifting the hind legs again. This was not normal. I bundled up and went out to check on him to find him shaking and unwilling to move.

    It took me quite a while to get him into a stall where I was able to check his vitals. Other than a slightly elevated temperature, all vitals were fine, no digital pulses, but something was very wrong.

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  • FINAL Reminder- We Want to Hear From YOU!

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    AHCThe following is an announcement from the American Horse Council.

    If you have already taken our strategic planning survey, thank you very much! We know you are busy, as we appreciate the time you took to give us your feedback. As such, you may disregard this email.

    This is a FINAL reminder that we would greatly appreciate 15 minutes of your time to complete a survey to aid in the American Horse Council’s upcoming Strategic Planning  workshop.   The information gathered in this survey will be used by the board and leadership to help identify key focus areas and priorities.

    Please note, responses are completely confidential and will not be linked back to any individual. All responses are due back by Monday, February 20th. We appreciate your time, feedback and insights!

    If you have any questions, please contact the AHC at info@horsecouncil.org

     

  • WE NEED YOUR HELP – Still here in South Dakota saving horses!

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    The following is an update from Chilly Pepper-Miracle Mustang Rescue.

    The wind is blowing the frozen snow and the roads are covered in ice. The temperature has been -18 degrees wind chill factor and conditions are brutal. However, the good news is that more horses are going out today, and even more are scheduled to leave in the next week or so.

    Your donations have purchased another $1100 in milk products for the 6 babies back at Chilly Pepper. Another $1000 to pull 4 more horses (transport, vetting etc.) this last week and yesterday it was over $550 for medical supplies. This was for medicine used for the babies and for horses in need of meds at this time.

    We purchased over $5000 worth of panels and had previously purchased $4200 worth. The $4200 was specifically donated by a wonderful woman named Sara, thanks to Elaine Nash and Fleet of Angels.

    It sounds like a lot of panels, but unfortunately even with the additional panels purchased by Fleet of Angels, we are still substantially short. A great number of the panels purchased for this rescue are being used to cover up very dangerous fencing so we can safely sort without horses being torn up.

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  • The Veterinarian’s Role in Equine Abuse Investigations

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    The following is an article from The Horse.

    The Veterinarian's Role in Equine Abuse Investigations

    Photo: Courtesy of the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals

    Veterinarians must know how to properly document findings and avoid destroying evidence while still putting the horse’s welfare first.

    How a veterinarian goes about examining and treating allegedly abused horses can mean the difference between a successful or unsuccessful case against the owner. He or she must know how to properly document all findings and avoid destroying evidence while still putting the horse’s welfare first.

    Nicole Eller, DVM, a Minnesota-based field shelter veterinarian with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ Field Investigations and Response team, described the veterinarian’s unique role in animal crime scene investigations during her presentation at the 2016 American Association of Equine Practitioners Convention, held Dec. 3-7 in Orlando, Florida.

    First, she reviewed the basics of evidence identification, collection, and preservation. “Evidence is generally defined as anything that can demonstrate or disprove a fact in contention,” said Eller. In equine abuse investigations, this can include anything from photos of a horse’s injuries or body condition to the moldy hay in his feeder.

    Veterinarians must view these cases through the lens of someone looking for and collecting evidence. As the equine expert, the veterinarian will recognize key pieces of evidence that other investigators might overlook.

    Eller then described the four phases of processing an animal crime scene.

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  • Cabin Fever Auction for SYALER – Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue!

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    The following is from the Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue.

    Dear friend of SYALER,

    The February doldrums are upon us, and at the Save Your Ass Long Ear Rescue, we have a full house of donkeys and mules snuggled down in beds of fluffy shavings with piles of hay keeping them warm and cozy, as they wait for new homes. In the meantime, the humans of SYALER are keeping busy with their care, as well as planning our 2017 fundraisers to support the rescue in the upcoming year.

    Our next event, which is guaranteed to bring some fun into the dark days of winter, is the annual Cabin Fever Online Auction which will be held from March 5-12 on our special Facebook Auction page. We are reaching out to you to ask if you would consider donating an item to our 2017 event. Over the years we’ve auctioned off a little bit of everything—travel, art, handcrafted items, services, gift certificates, produce, baked goods, clothing, equine items, animal training, collectibles, household items—you name it! We welcome and appreciate all donations—large, medium or small.

    Continue Reading
  • Horse Welfare Report Clears European Parliament Hurdle

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    The following is an article from The Herald.

    The report from Julie Girling MEP sets out to stop the abuse of horses across Europe and ensure their welfare is catered for

    The report from Julie Girling MEP sets out to stop the abuse of horses across Europe and ensure their welfare is catered for.

    Major steps to halt the abuse and cruel exploitation of horses and donkeys, set out in a report from British MEP Julie Girling, were approved this week by a key committee of the European Parliament.

    The package of measures for equine welfare received the approval of the European Parliament’s Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee on Wednesday (January 25).

    “We are on our way to a better deal for donkeys and horses. Cruelty and neglect is a problem across the continent and we must tackle it,” Mrs Girling declared.

    Julie Girling, Conservative MEP for the South West and Gibraltar

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  • Donation Brings Companion To Kona’s Most Famous, Loneliest Donkey

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    The following is an article from West Hawaii Today.

    KEALAKEKUA — Loneliness isn’t just a human phenomenon. Its existence has been well documented throughout the animal kingdom, from elephants to primates to canines.

    It’s even prevalent with donkeys, the beasts of burden that served a fundamental function in the development of the coffee industry on Hawaii Island.

    Just this week, perhaps the island’s most famous donkey — Charlie, the 30-year-old pack animal who has spent the better part of the last 15 years as a staple of the Kona Coffee Living History Farm — finally found himself a friend to share the load.

    The Kona Historical Society, which operates the farm, announced Tuesday that its crowd funding campaign, “Charlie Needs a Bestie,” had resulted in the donation of a 6-month old donkey.

    “We used to joke his only friends were chickens,” said Gavin Miculka, assistant program director at the Kona Historical Society.

    “And those chickens were kind of selfish friends, because they’d just come around when he was eating and steal all of his food,” added Carolyn Lucas-Zenk, volunteer coordinator and development associate with the society. “He’s getting old in age. We wanted him to have a friend. Wouldn’t everybody want a friend instead of being here lonely, by yourself, with some selfish chickens?”

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  • AWHP: We’re WILD About These T-Shirts!

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    The following is from the American Wild Horse Preservation.

    This week only…Get your limited edition ‘Keep Wild Horses Wild‘ T-shirt…and support our work! We are thrilled to announce that FLOAT is featuring these T-shirts, and for the next six days, will donate $8 for every shirt sold to the American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign.

    SHOP today – there are lots of fun colors and styles to choose from! This is a great way to support our work to Keep Wild Horses Wild and free on the range and look fabulous! Don’t miss this opportunity!

     

  • CHARITY FEARS DONKEYS ARE BEING ‘BLUDGEONED TO DEATH’ FOR SKIN TRADE

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    The following is an article from Horse & Hound.

    An animal charity has called for a halt to the global donkey skin trade after finding shocking welfare concerns and suffering on a mass scale.

    The Donkey Sanctuary has conducted an investigative report into the trade, titled Under The Skin, and has found that as many as 10 million donkeys are at risk.

    It is lobbying for an immediate end to the trade until it can be “proven to be sustainable and humane.”

    “We have seen reports of donkeys being skinned alive, being bludgeoned to death, being transported for long distances with no opportunity to rest, feed or drink,” said Alex Mayers, the charity’s international program manager.

    “The welfare of any donkey, both during and at the end of its life, is paramount and should be the primary concern, as for any food-producing animal.

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  • AWHP Update: BLM Wants to Sterilize Blue Wing Horses & Burros!

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    The following is an update from the American Wild Horse Preservation.

    The Bureau of Land Management’s Humboldt River Field Office is accepting public comments on a Preliminary Environmental Assessment (PEA) to manage the federally protected horses and burros in the Blue Wing Complex in Nevada. The Complex, which includes the Kamma Mountains, Seven Troughs Range, the Lava Beds, Blue Wing Mountains, and Shawave HMAs, spans 2,283,300 acres (over 3,500 square miles!). Yet the BLM has set “Appropriate” Management Levels (AMLs) of just 333 to 553 wild horses and 55 to 90 wild burros for this entire area! At the upper population limit, that’s only one horse or burro per 3,551 acres!

    Photo of captured Nevada wild horses by BLM

    The BLM wants to drive the wild horse and burro population down to low AML in 20 years by implementing an unprecedented plan to sterilize 30 percent of these herds using highly controversial procedures that are untested in wild free-roaming horse herds. The BLM’s plan does not disclose when and how many roundups will occur, how many wild horses and burros will be permanently removed, when and how many mares and jennies will be treated with fertility control or spayed, or when and how many stallions and jacks will be gelded.

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  • AWHP Update: ❤ Love Conquers All ❤

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    The following is an update from the American Wild Horse Preservation.

    As Americans, we are united in our love for freedom and our love for our national symbols of freedom:  America’s mustangs.

    Is love enough to save these cherished animals? It will be, if we turn our love into action!

    Valentine’s Day is two weeks away, and we have a great way for you to show your love and act for wild horses and burros!

    For the next ten days, you can donate to support our work and dedicate your gift in honor of a loved one.

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  • UHC Roundup – February 2017

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    The following is an announcement from the UHC Roundup.

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    The Media Roundup is now the UHC Roundup, a publication with a new name and a broader scope. In addition to news articles and events, the UHC Roundup highlights member programs and success stories spanning all breeds, disciplines, and regions, plus it has a new photo feature and a link to the UHC Blog.

    If you wish to share your story of unwanted horses becoming wanted again, contact the UHC at uhc@horsecouncil.org.

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  • South Dakota update on Court Case on remaining 540 horses from Chilly Pepper!

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    The following is an update from Chilly Pepper-Miracle Mustang Rescue.

    After days of driving very slowly on solid ice and snow, we arrived safely after delivering the horses to their new homes. Matt and I have never seen so many wrecks. It was truly terrifying with our precious cargo on board. But our prayers were answered and we had Angels all around us.

    We delivered Copper, Delilah, Precious and Abilene (shown above) safely to their new homes and headed back towards ISPMB. As you can see, by the photo below, the snow is once again a hindering factor in our work.

    This photo was taken just before we arrived at ISPMB. Snow has actually drifted so high over some of the fencing that horses can simply walk out.

    As we were driving, I received a message from the Sheriff that the court hearing had been cancelled. A deal had been reached between Karen Sussman and the Counties. Karen gets to keep 20 of her favorite Gila horses and the rest have been turned over to Fleet of Angels.

    So the work begins. While I would much rather be back home taking care of our critters, there are 520 horses needing homes immediately!!

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  • Final Horse Protection Act Regulations on Hold

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    AHCThe following is an announcement from the American Horse Council.

    Recently, President Trump ordered a government wide freeze on all new federal regulations pending review. This order has put an indefinite hold on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) final regulations governing enforcement of the Horse Protection Act (HPA).

    On January 13, 2017, USDA announced a final HPA rule.   However, the final rule was not published in the Federal Register before President Trump issued his order to all federal agencies to withdrawal all regulations that had not yet been published pending review. The final rule would have made several major changes to current HPA regulations with the goal of ending soring.

    It will now be up to the Trump administration to decide whether or not to finalize the HPA rule. There is no timeline for review of the rule and the new administration could decide to issue a final rule at any time or withdrawal the rule completely. The HPA enforcement program will continue to operate under the current HPA regulations.

    Click Here To Read the Article on AHC

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