I read in the newspaper about a horse that's allergic to grass (yah.. true). She's 5 years old and if she as much as touches grass she'll get severe breathing issues and rashes (I think). She can't eat grass or hay either, I'm not sure what they feed her.
They keep her heavily blanketed in the pasture and gives her allergy medecines every day.
Here's a link, tho it's a swedish site.But it has a picture. I don't know why she's in a grass field instead of a sand paddock or something...
Most of the comments under the article say that ity's cruelty to keep her alive and that she should be put down because a horse that can't eat grass must be suffering and depressed. ''A horse should eat grass, as simple as that'' They don't like her being blanketed that much either.
I'm of a different opinion... I'm not going to compare humans and horses, because I know we think differently, but we have had a rather big ''active death-help'' debate here now for a while and I can't help but see the similarities in the thinking between those pro ''assisted death'' in humans, and those pro puttng this horse down. The key reason is ''it's not normal, so it must be suffering and wanting to die''.
Now let me compare a brief moment with humans; the ''not normal and suffering'' humans here doesn't want to be killed (in most cases, and in the cases they do it's 99% if the times because they feel worthless and have a bad selfconfidence thanks to their injury and the peoples opinios around them, something I don't think horses have any issues with) and even if they're in pain, and even if they said before whatever accident they were into, that if ''that'' happened they didn't want to survive, they changed their minds as soon as ''that'' had happened and they had adjusted to it, they now have a good quality life if you ask them. (I know this because I know people that this has happened too, and I've read their own writings in the debates)
Point being; we can not know how it is to be in a situation before we are there. Even if we think the horse must be suffering since it can't have a normal life in our point of view, we can't be sure that the horse really prefer to die or is depressed about its own situation. Especially not without even meeting the horse in life.
I don't think we can judge if another being should be put down for its own best only by looking at the circumstanses in which it lives, without at least meeting the being and communicate with it (body language and such, I think all of you agree that if you meet a horse you can see or feel if it's happy or deeply depressed?)
I'm not saying that we have to save a life at all cost, just that we shouldn't assume that this horse wants to die just because we learn it's allergic to grass.
I'm not saying that horses and humans always are the same either, because we're not, but I do think that the similarities are worth a thought in this case.
Ok, that was a long post, that's my contribute to the discussion :P
Now, what do YOU think? With the information you have about this horse; that it's allergic to grass and never will be able to eat grass/hay or roll in grass, or even run on a grassy field without tons of blankets, for the rest of its life; can you say for sure if this horse should be put down for it's own good or not, and if it's animal cruelty to keep it alive?
(I don't know this horse, and I do wonder what they feed it when it can't eat hay or grass. Tae a look at the picture in the link, if yu like)