As I have previously mentioned, I am an Equestrian. I ride English Hunter/Jumper and have dabbled in Dressage. I am obsessed with horses. Since breaking my elbow riding, I have dreamt of riding every night, pushed myself in physio to get back out there. I’m obsessed. A lot of my love of horses stems from my love of animals in general. In my years working with Horses, I have seen some pretty horrible things.
The Horse industry is a mess. There are many ethical people who love their animals and treat them well in the community. Many. I do not dispute that. However, there are many who do not. They see these intelligent and kind animals as property and do not care about their well being. Once the horse can’t race anymore, or work it is sent to slaughter. Knowing horses as I do I can tell you how particularly cruel this is.
The horse I was riding, the horse that threw me is a beautiful Grey Appendix Mare. She is 8 years old, no issues except for a few melanoma tumours. She is not ill or dying, the tumours are benign. She has beautiful form and loves to jump and work. This horse was rescued from an auction where she was set to be sent to slaughter. Horses can live up to 40 years, and she is 8. The reason? The lumps on her neck weren’t that pretty and she might die as early as 17. That’s it. The damage this has caused to her is immense. She now has severe trust and behavioural issues and sometimes lashes out. This is not her fault, we did this to her. Imagine spending the first 8 years of your life somewhere, and then one day a trailer comes and your taken away. You don’t know why or where you’re going. You never see the people you bonded with again.
We made horses they way they are for our benefit. They grow to rely on us and trust us. In fact, studies have shown that horses are capable of reading human emotions. Anyone who has bonded with one can attest to this. We have a responsibility to care for them and respect them. Like any animal. There is another way, stricter rules on breeding for example. Supporting your local horse rescue. Banning racing, which is the worst culprit of abuse and neglect.
They don’t have a voice, they need ours.