The horse market these days - Page 2
   

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The horse market these days

This is a discussion on The horse market these days within the Horse Breeds forums, part of the Horse Breeds, Breeding, and Genetics category

     
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        02-02-2008, 05:00 PM
      #11
    Started
    I just wanted to mention that on my recent trip to the Netherlands, I was very surprised (pleasantly so) at the amount of horse culture I saw there. Now admittedly, I was in a more agricultural area, but it seemed like every other house had at least a bit of land with a horse or two on it. Also, it was VERY common to see some girl or boy hacking out on a pony (right along with the bicyclists!), or a driver trotting his pair along the road. You could turn out of your driveway and immediately stumble on a path or secluded lane perfect for an afternoon ride.

    And people went out and DID things with their horses, all the time. Every weekend, it seemed there was some local dressage or driving competition to go watch. Muddy horses right out of the fields would come and strut their stuff for ribbons...it was very casual and everyone had a good time.

    You just don't see that sort of thing much in the states anymore. When I was a kid, I used to ride all over the place, but now, I think our roads just aren't that horse-friendly. And the places that still are horse-centric are very spread out.

    Anyway, I don't know exactly where I was going with that except to point out the difference to our own situation here. The mid-range horse culture seems alive and well, at least in the part of Europe I was visiting:P
         
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        02-02-2008, 10:36 PM
      #12
    Banned
    How do you think prices of horses can get SO low?
    Too many horses, not enough demand, hay is too expensive. Nobody wants the horses, and the owners can't (or won't) afford to feed them.

    How does the market get so flooded with horses that cannot be supported?
    Idiotic breeders, the collapse of the economy, the rising price of feed.

    How do so many untrained horses end up out there?
    Many of these idiotic breeders don't take the time/effort or don't have the skill to train their horses. It's easier to dump them at an auction than actually ensure they get the training they need--which would take time and money.

    Why do people breed so many more horses than they could possibly ever train or hire staff to train themselves..sending them into the market with little chance?
    Uh, 'cause they're stupid?

    What, if anything can be done about the flooded horse market on a large scale basis (in theory anyway)?
    Bring back slaughter in the US, have government regulations on breeding (which will never happen). Educate people (which will never work). Possibly have some sort of government-regulated slaughter operation, similar to the pounds for dogs and cats. The meat could either be sold overseas or used for animal comsumption on a local scale. This would eliminate profits for the kill buyer, but still give horses an alternative to starving to death.

    What can be done on a small scale basis?
    Stop breeding, especially poor quality, but even mediocre/average, decent, pretty good, and good horses shouldn't be bred when the market is this flooded. Only exceptional quality animals should be allowed to reproduce. Instead of breeding your own, buy weanlings. Also, rescue as many at auction as you can afford.

    Is this a problem everywhere (countries)?
    It's hitting the US really hard right now after the recent slaughter ban.

    Will this problem be around for a long time?
    Unfortunately, yes. It's a direct result of human selfishness and stupidity.

    I am also interested to hear if anyone has gotten one or more of their horses from auction, and what kind of an experience that was?? It seems like there are some real gems that go through those auctions very cheap!
    Yes, there are a lot of crappy horses and a lot of good horses. The young and unbroke are often diamonds in the rough. One of my good mares was en route to the kill lot when I picked her up for $500 (this was a few years ago, when the price of horses was higher). I could sell her for close to $7500, now. Some horses need rehabilitation, either in terms of health or training, and some will require more care than others, but the auction is a great place to pick up a nice, cheap prospect and save a life.

    One theme I saw on the auction report was young, untrained, broodmare, or lame. I saw that there were both grade and registered horses, there were QHs, paints, tb, percheron, and others.

    Is there a breed that ends up at auction more than others?
    If so, why?
    Yes, the more common and overproduced breeds (Standardbreds, Arabians, Quarter Horses/Paints/Appaloosas, Thoroughbreds, draft horses, the color breeds that have no value other than a pretty hide, grade horses etc. You won't find any Friesians or Marwaris there. Because they're more rare--and exotic--they're priced much higher and aren't in excess quantity. People pay a lot of money for them.

    When we have members having a hard time selling good horses for less than $1000, I think that is ridiculous....good horses should cost in the thousands of dollars...they are a luxury, and cost a lot to care for. How does this happen??
    Same as above--too many horses, not enough feed, gas and hay are more expensive, the economy took a nosedive, and the slaughterhouses closed down.

    How can private horse sellers compete with auctions that sell horses between $10 and $300 without blinking?
    Uh, they can't. See your question above. The only thing is, some people either don't trust auctions and would rather buy from a private seller, or are uneducated and will pay much more for a horse than they need to.
         
        02-02-2008, 10:45 PM
      #13
    Yearling
    I just wanted to link to this...Drop your Reins wrote up a great bit on population control of horses that ties in well with this discussion.
    http://www.horseforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=6056
         
        02-02-2008, 10:53 PM
      #14
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bubba13

    What, if anything can be done about the flooded horse market on a large scale basis (in theory anyway)?
    Bring back slaughter in the US, have government regulations on breeding (which will never happen). Educate people (which will never work). Possibly have some sort of government-regulated slaughter operation, similar to the pounds for dogs and cats. The meat could either be sold overseas or used for animal comsumption on a local scale. This would eliminate profits for the kill buyer, but still give horses an alternative to starving to death.
    Though horse slaughter is not nice to think about, it happens...and I don't think that having it be government controlled would be that bad of an idea. Living/travel conditions to the actual time of slaughter could have minimal standards of care. The money would get out of the kill buyers hands and to the government, who would turn around and use some of that to fund programs to help the horse/agriculture industry.
    Whether or not that would really happen is another story...

    Sara,
    What a great thing to see! I wish it were like that more here.
         
        02-02-2008, 11:40 PM
      #15
    Yearling
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AKPaintLover

    Though horse slaughter is not nice to think about, it happens...and I don't think that having it be government controlled would be that bad of an idea. Living/travel conditions to the actual time of slaughter could have minimal standards of care. The money would get out of the kill buyers hands and to the government, who would turn around and use some of that to fund programs to help the horse/agriculture industry.
    I feel the need to add to my earlier thought....

    If there must be slaughter, I feel the standard of care and methods should be regulated.

    BUT, I find reducing the population of unwanted horses and eliminating the need to slaughter unwanted horses much preferable.

    I can dream right :)

    Well, hubby is working nights, my chores are done, horses tucked in,...so I am off to read some conformation manuals and watch the tube :) Exciting Saturday night I know!
         
        02-03-2008, 12:57 PM
      #16
    Foal
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AKPaintLover
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by bubba13

    What, if anything can be done about the flooded horse market on a large scale basis (in theory anyway)?
    Bring back slaughter in the US, have government regulations on breeding (which will never happen). Educate people (which will never work). Possibly have some sort of government-regulated slaughter operation, similar to the pounds for dogs and cats. The meat could either be sold overseas or used for animal comsumption on a local scale. This would eliminate profits for the kill buyer, but still give horses an alternative to starving to death.
    Though horse slaughter is not nice to think about, it happens...and I don't think that having it be government controlled would be that bad of an idea. Living/travel conditions to the actual time of slaughter could have minimal standards of care. The money would get out of the kill buyers hands and to the government, who would turn around and use some of that to fund programs to help the horse/agriculture industry.
    Whether or not that would really happen is another story...

    Sara,
    What a great thing to see! I wish it were like that more here.

    Honestly, I have to agree. The horse world(in the US at least) seems horrified by the idea of horse slaughter but it is very necissary if we want to revive the horse market. However, with animal rights activists always gaining momentum it just wont happen.
         
        02-03-2008, 07:00 PM
      #17
    tim
    Weanling
    Yea, the AQHA tried to stop it with all their special interest lawyers and lobbyists. Now I know why and I respect that association even more.
         
        02-03-2008, 09:42 PM
      #18
    Showing
    I agree with regulated, government-owned slaughter. The kind where we know the horses are being shipped, handled and killed as humanely as possible - because we all know that sure as heck doesn't happen with regular plants. However, slaughter is a necessary evil. There are too many unwanted or chronically lame horses to take care of, and with some of these horses, a good portion of them would be better off being put down than kept alive. It's the sad truth. And there are far worse fates than being sent to a regulated slaughterhouse, I.e. Death by malnutrition.
    I used to be young and totally shocked that anyone could ever consider slaughter as being acceptable, but now I realize that it's needed in the industry. I personally won't send a horse there, but that's because I train my horses up and buy quality horses that can be sold as riding horses.
         
        02-04-2008, 10:54 PM
      #19
    Yearling
    Okay, so slaughter in the states no longer exists and may not again. Horses at auctions get sent to slaughters across the border. Numbers of low quality/unwanted horses are still higher than ever. So large scale solutions are not incredibly viable.

    Small scale, I think education is key...and I think it is doable. Groups exist such as 4H and pony club that can educate the future horse owners on best practices. It seems like if you are able to educate the leaders and council members for these programs, it would spread knowledge to many more people.

    What can rescue and other like organizations do other than banning slaughter? Doing that only shifted the problem...how can they help solve the problem? How can they help educate?

    It seems like horses differ from dogs and cats because puppies and kittens have a better shot at adoption whereas trained horses have a better shot. Is it realistic to that the people with the knowledge of how to train horses could take on an extra horse for basic training to help someone out? I know I would be willing to volunteer a small amount of my time each week to fix bad habits or start a horse in my area it it would help ensure that horses a good home. Is there a way to connect the people who need help with those who are willing to give it? It seems that might be an area where rescue organizations could come into play.

    Also, the licensing for horse ownership and breeding is really a good idea. The two could even be different levels of license. But, how does that get turned from an idea into a reality. What sort of details might be set for such a program? Pass a test? Provide financial proof? Again, is it realistic or fantasy?

    Is is feasible to limit the number of horses owned by a person? By a ranch? Is it fair? What would set the limit?

    To me, it seems like there are so many possible solutions...yet there is so little being done. All I really see happening is over-breeding of the unwanted and slaughter.

    It seems like those of us with the knowledge and means to care for the horses we have and not get pinched into a must get rid of this horse situation are not the problem, so imposing restrictions on ourselves will do no good. How do we get those common sense restrictions extended to those out there that really need them? And what should those restrictions be?

    No need to answer my questions word for word...just jump in with anything that inspires you. :)
         
        02-05-2008, 01:13 PM
      #20
    Green Broke
    I knew slaughter would come up when I saw this thread! Did you know that something like 900,000 horses were being sent to slaughter every year? With overpopulation in dogs and cats people have the "easy" answer of euthanasia. Unfortunately horses are incredibly more expensive to take care of (even put down) and take knowledge to care for/train that the majority of the people out there don't have. So when you close the slaughter plants out there, what are people going to do with their unwanted horses?

    I've been to auctions before and in my area 95% of them are conformationally scary completely untrained (or handled) 2-3 year olds that were bred in herds by that ignorant/irresponsible guy who didn't think about what would happen by letting his conformationlly scary/completely untrained stud with his herd of conformationally scary/completely untrained herd of mares. (i've actually heard people say, I didn't know they could get pregnant at 2 years old...) Now that feed prices are skyrocketing and with 2 summers of droughts which killed off pastures... Idiot Joe-Bob farmer has nothing to do with his 50 untouched horses. No auctions to send them to now? Well, all he wants to do is get rid of them so he'll sell them cheap (or send them to the mexico plants where there are no regulations, thanks anti-slaughter people!) . And like someone else said, here comes little Susie who wants a pony and her completely inexperienced parents think it's a great idea to give her a baby so they can "learn together". People aren't buying the trained horses because who wants to pay $5000 when you can get one for $50? WAYYYYY too many horses out there. Supply is bigger then demand.

    Just to add, I'm not saying banning slaughter is the ONLY reason why the horse market is saturated. Overbreeding is the main problem, but banning sure made the problem a heck of a lot worse!

    I'm not sure if this is as common in other countries. But I know in other countries they actually regulating breeding (increase quality, decrease sheer numbers). Something the US needs to think about.
         

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