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Article published March 28, 2013
OK new horse policy
Sam Brothers Petrolia
When I read in the Butler Eagle about the horse neglect, it made me think about the cause. Not long ago these unwanted and old horses had value. It was the horse lovers who stopped the slaughter and use of these animals. It might have been a noble idea, but it caused the wrong outcome. These people live in a perfect world — or at least think they do. Death is part of the life cycle. This is like a no-kill animal shelter. It can stay in operation only a short time until it can no longer feed and care for all the old and sick. This does not help the animal population; it only makes the people who try to do the impossible feel good. I first read a letter to the editor from Glenny Coughenour, “Horse options exist,” that was printed in the Feb. 21 Butler Eagle. People who have unwanted horses and can’t afford the feed and care have a real problem. Coughenour has two ideas, rehoming or euthanization. No one wants the horses in question, and euthanization costs more, to add to the problem. Slaughter is the answer but people cannot stand the thought. Not all horses are pets, and in the western states the problem is even worse. Many have been turned loose to run free. There they cause real damage to land. Horse meat is used in many places as human food — and unlike beef, which gets tougher as the cattle age, the meat from horses gets tender with age. Those who want to help the problem should work to get slaughter and export of horse meat for human consumption approved. I do not want any animal neglected or mistreated, but until things change, that is what is destined to continue happening.