I'll tell you why I DO GET a bee in my bonnet when people start 'turning in' slick fat horses that are being ridden soundly:
I used to be the one that the local sheriff asked to go out and look at horses or cattle or dogs or whatever that were 'turned in' to their office. Until a few years ago (I've lived here 33 years) there was no Vet that lived or worked in the County. This is the second smallest county in OK and only has a population of 12,000 total and only has two small towns located in it. Anyway, Sheriff's office would call and say they had a report of xyz animal that was being abused or was being starved or being neglected. After about 20 or 30 of these calls, there were about split in half -- half were nearly dead and should have been turned in months before but no one did or they were just fine but someone did not like like the looks of their feet or someone did not like the idea that a hunting dog was staked out on a chain (common practice still for hunting dogs) or a horse did not have a blanket on during a storm. A lot of the calls were made by people that had just moved in from Dallas or Calif and did not know that horses lived out here like real horses or that it was not against the law to stake out a dog here or ????
As these unnecessary calls started to outnumber the real ones, all it did was to desensitize the Sheriff's office to the point where they started to write off most reports as a 'neighbor who does not like the person'. I finally told them that I did not have the time to chase down all of the calls and would not go out anymore unless they sent a deputy with me. Unless someone like myself calls them (which I have), they just say, "Yes Mam! We'll look into it." Which they never do any more until they get several calls about the same situation. Add to that that most stock (including horses) are MUCH thinner than they used to be kept because of the drought, poor quality hay and high feed prices.
Last Monday night horse sale here (2 weeks ago today), half of the 140 horses there were showing ribs. Probably 20 of them were very thin -- 2 or 3 on the B S scale. [They do not accept horses that are #1 on the BS scale and they turn down several at every sale.] No one even bothers to turn in those horses any more because none of the Sheriff's offices have the money or the facilities or the way to handle them if they went to seize them. One of the sale barn employees offered to go out and shoot several horses that were brought in too thin to sell. Don't know if the guy took him up on it or not.
By the way, we bought two horses at the sale. One was a small 13.3 hand 10 year old gentle gelding and an 8 year old App gelding. Both had longer feet than this horse and you could see their ribs through their long hair. Both were re-shod the very next day, dewormed and been ridden several times since. Both have already gained a lot of weight but the little one is not nearly as quiet and gentle since he is getting enough feed. [He may not be able to stand prosperity.]
I am just saying that there are so many REAL cases of neglect and abuse out there, PLEASE don't turn in horses that are not really neglected or abused, even if their situation may not be ideal. The laws do not say everything has to be perfect or ideal. Horses do not have to be kept in 'show horse' condition.
| Severe stunting- can she ever be normal? We have a very sad case today, a lovely little one year old Thoroughbred filly who we originally had as a foster from a local rescue. |
Please read this thread. This horse and these people should have been turned in.
On the other hand, a few years ago aggressive authorities took an entire herd of horses away from a woman in Arkansas and cost her thousands of dollars and most of her horses because neighbors did not like her. All but a couple of older horses were fat enough to not see their ribs and everyone that knew her said her horses were in good shape. They lost weight and looked much worse after they were seized. She finally got most of them back, but the whole thing bankrupted her.
This, like the closing of the US slaughter plants is something that I have been waaaaay to close to. It seems that a lot of the unintended consequences of false reports, like the closure of the slaughter plants, has just caused more and more horse abuse. And NO, it does not set well with me.
I'll get off of my soap-box now.