Originally Posted by corinowalk
Real rescues are full. The horse market is in the dumps. If you want to help and don't have a reputable rescue around you yet have the resources to help a horse in need, your local auction house is your next best bet. Buying a horse from the auction is always going to be a crap shoot. Whether you get them from a broker (AC4H or Camelot etc) or buy direct, you are still getting a horse with almost no past information and basically eyes only buy. If you get there early enough, you can almost certainly talk to several consignors of horses and get some back story. Good horses end up at auction. Bad horses end up there too.
Don't buy with your heart. Buying a 25 year old emaciated stallion with lameness isn't helping anyone. Especially if you are passing by 15 well broke, healthy horses to get him. Pro-slaughter or anti-slaughter, the fact remains the same. Save a horse that has a chance, not one that deserves pity.
Here, here! Agreed 100%. I live 20 min from Shipshewana, which is a weekly auction that also caters to a tremendous killbuyer market. The horses are run separately through the saddle barn, or the "loose pens" (aka killpens) and there are easily 100 horses a week in those kill pens. Most do go to killbuyers. There are several dedicated local rescues, as well as a fair few local amish, and horse flippers, who pull horses from the kill pen week in and week out. Thank goodness for them.
As mentioned, I've bought horses out of the killpens myself - some in the past have been very, very good horses, also. I don't often see horses in the kill pen go much over 100 dollars - and many go for as little as 30-40 bucks. Yes some horses there are sick, hurt, or problematic. Most are skinny. Few are 100% sound, but some could be with a little TLC.