unnecessary euthanasia

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unnecessary euthanasia

This is a discussion on unnecessary euthanasia within the Horse Health forums, part of the Keeping and Caring for Horses category

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    01-10-2012, 06:37 AM
unnecessary euthanasia

I have been feeding a horse in a field locally for about a year. I drive past this horse sometimes 4-8 times a day. I originally approached the owners as I thought the horse was lonely at which pont she asked if I wanted him. At the time I looked long and hard to re home him also calling in a local horse and donkey sanctuary. I wasn't successful and anyway a close friend died and so I became distracted. I just continued to feed him horse treats, apples and carrots. He was 25 and in in good condition, always very receptive with a beautiful nature. As soon as I parked my car he would saunter over and always gave me a lovely greeting sound.

I asked the owner if I could groom him, she said NO. I saw him 10 days ago and he galloped over to me and was in good shape, ate all his apples up and sauntered off. My daughter and I hadn't seen him for over a week but we ascribed this to the windy weather and thought he was just being stabled. I called her this evening and she spat, 'He's dead'" "He was making a mess of the field and was lame and anyway it was my decision." This horse was not lame, or at least was still able to gallop and seemed very happy the last time I saw him.

Are people able to put a horse down like this? I am heart broken as I really loved this horse, even if they didn't.

What kind of veterinarian would put a healthy horse down in this way?

I am gobsmacked that someone can site "messing up the field' as an excuse for destroying a horse.
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    01-10-2012, 06:59 AM
It is sad yes, But it is the owners decision. In my opinion they could have surrendered him to the RSPCA or somthing like that or even rehomed him.
    01-10-2012, 07:13 AM
While I can understand your concern and frustration, you may not know all the details. You hadn't seen the horse for over a week and/or unless you have been around horses for a long time, you may not have noticed a problem.

In either case, it seemed a little callous to inform you the way she did but it was within her rights to do what she did. Chances are that if the horse was in good shape, the vet would have tried to rehome the horse rather then put him down but you also need to understand what is happening in the horse world today.

The fact that you were unsuccessful in finding him a home is the reason so many horses are going to auctions and eventually being moved out of country. The rescues and sanctuaries are overflowing with unwanted horses. There is little choice for many owners who no longer want or can care for their horses so many turn to the most humane way to handle it - better for the horse to end up like that then some of the alternatives.
    01-10-2012, 07:52 AM
Unfortunately, it is.

As awful as this sounds, a horse can go form sound to lame in seconds. I appreciate you may have been busy, but the horse could have broken a leg for all you know, and the owner may still be upset, hence her reaction. Not saying it is, but things happen that are out of our control.
    01-10-2012, 08:46 AM
Green Broke
Read and re-read what iridehorses said.

It's entirely possible the owner's callousness and rudeness stemmed from having to put the horse down and that's her safety valve because it's something she really didn't want to do.

She could have had her own illness from which she may either be laid up for weeks and weeks at a time or not recover at all, and therefore wanted to know the horse is safe.

I speak sort of from that arena. My horses look as healthy as --- well --- horses but they are not.

Two have serious metabolic issues along with some old injuries that now beget arthritis. They "appear" healthy because I spend a lot of money keeping them that way and I hand mix everything these horses eat.

Which, by the way, I would have my hands around the OP's throat for feeding my horses over the fence - especially the two with metabolic issues. Even my neighbor's two young sons won't do that and I've never said a word to them.

IF something were to happen to debilitate me in a way that I could no longer get to the barn, all four of my horses will be humanely laid to rest in their own pasture.

They range from 16 yrs to 26 yrs and each of them has some sort of issue that merits them being special needs, even though they don't appear that way to the public.

Noone wants to take on a horse like that, over the long term, even though on the short term they think they would because I am evil for wanting to keep them safe.

Like it or not, my vet would support this. Like or not - it's life and get over it. They would be safe from the idiots who only think they know the right way to care for these horses who are very trail rideable but no longer for more than anything at a Metro Park.

One isn't rideable unless you weigh 60 lbs or less but he canters around and picks the herd members lower than him.

My friend gave her cushings pony away to someone who stood on their knowledgeable laurels, convincing my friend they knew how to take care of this horse. He was dead in less than six months because they really didn't know as much as they thought they did. It should not have happened.

Hopefully, I've made my point
    01-10-2012, 11:19 AM
unnecessary euthanasia

I hear what you are all saying but why site messing up a field as a reason for destroying a horse unless you were callous and not fit to own one?
    01-10-2012, 11:23 AM
She may have been trying to reason with herself.

Upset people sometimes don't make sense- you know nothing about the horse really. She could have raised it herself.

In all honesty, don't be upset by her attitude. Its a shame the horse has been pts, but as has been said, you don't know the ins and outs.

Horse people are crazy enough. When we lose one of the herd, some of us take it harder than others and we got a bit crazier for a while.
Wallaby and walkinthewalk like this.
    01-10-2012, 11:34 AM
To get a person who has no business feeding someone else's horse and butting into business that is not theirs to shut up.
It is not your business nor is it the owners responsibility to say a darn word to you much less explain her reasoning why she did something to her horse on her property.
    01-10-2012, 11:41 AM
Originally Posted by gillycat    
I hear what you are all saying but why site messing up a field as a reason for destroying a horse unless you were callous and not fit to own one?
Again - you do not know the whole story. You did not have a relationship with this person so it would be impossible to know how they reacted to hardship.

By calling her - you invaded her privacy and she became defensive. Certainly her right to do so.
    01-10-2012, 11:44 AM
You don't know that it was the REAL reason. She may have been upset, and thought it very rude of you to call her and ask. After all, you're nothing but a stranger who gave her horse treats every now and then.

You were asked previously if you wanted the horse, and turned down the offer. You don't get to make judgment calls on what his owner did or didn't do, because you simply don't know the situation.

Horses are considered property. Their owners may euth them, regardless of whether or not some random person thinks they shouldn't have.

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