France Bans Whisker Trimming - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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France Bans Whisker Trimming

A friend forwarded this article this afternoon.



France Bans the Trimming of Whiskers
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post #2 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 06:03 PM
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It's sort of ironic that you can't trim whiskers but eating horses is okay? I don't trim whiskers either, mainly because I don't have a reason to. But of all welfare issues to crack down on, that seems like such an insignificant one.


Why not require horses have hay 24/7, require turnout, require fly spray, require hoofcare (maybe they already do?) or ban slaughter. But trimming whiskers? Whatever floats their boat I guess.
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post #3 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 06:38 PM
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Itís been banned in Switzerland and Germany for a long time
I donít trim any more because we donít show now but I did for a long time and never had a horse object to it, walk into things or have a problem grazing or eating out of a manger so not sure if it should be illegal
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post #4 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 06:42 PM
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Originally Posted by jaydee View Post
Itís been banned in Switzerland and Germany for a long time
I donít trim any more because we donít show now but I did for a long time and never had a horse object to it, walk into things or have a problem grazing or eating out of a manger so not sure if it should be illegal

Me neither. I just trail ride, but 20 years ago when I got my first horses (Arabians) I would mimic the show trims complete with trimmed whiskers and huge bridle paths. I'm sure it felt funny but they never seemed to care.
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post #5 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 07:14 PM
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I think it's a great move.

It's like a lot of stuff people do to animals. Just because they "don't seem to mind" is not really a good enough reason to keep doing something that alters an animal's perceptions, balance, or natural abilities, just because it's the style. The analysis has to be a bit more rigorous than that, in my opinion. The rigorous analysis is that it does affect the animal adversely, whether it shows that to you or not.

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post #6 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 07:18 PM
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Originally Posted by trailhorserider View Post
It's sort of ironic that you can't trim whiskers but eating horses is okay? I don't trim whiskers either, mainly because I don't have a reason to. But of all welfare issues to crack down on, that seems like such an insignificant one.


Why not require horses have hay 24/7, require turnout, require fly spray, require hoofcare (maybe they already do?) or ban slaughter. But trimming whiskers? Whatever floats their boat I guess.
Many if not most western European countries do mandate standards of care far beyond what the US does.

Eating horses isn't inhumane unless you eat them while they're still alive; whether you agree or disagree with eating horsemeat, it remains a separate issue from standard of care.

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post #7 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 08:03 PM
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Question as a new horse owner. Lulu has a couple of really long whiskers and I have thought about trimming them to match the others (nothing shorter than 2"). Would that be o.k.? I have also considered trimming her ear hair so it doesn't stick out of her ears (does that make sense?) just trimming the long hairs that stick out beyond her ears.



By the way. I despise tail docking and ear cropping in dogs. I can't see how it benefits a dog to remove body parts so I am really cautious with my mare. And in the dog world people do shave off whiskers and I don't think that is a good thing to do.
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post #8 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 08:24 PM
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Ears don't have vibrissae (sensory hairs) so nothing wrong with trimming ear hair to look tidy. I was taught to fold the ear lengthwise and trim what stuck out. I also don't see anything wrong with trimming vibrissae to two inches.

Vibrissae are just as important on dogs and it is just as wrong to trim those. Ear cropping is obviously cruel, as it is done to older puppies. However it has long been illegal in Europe and falling out of use even in the US. Docking is a little more arguable -- at least as the owner of two traditionally docked breeds I've sure heard all the arguments -- as it is done within three days of birth and the puppies' incompletely developed nervous systems do not appear to react much to it. I am against docking too, but not quite as vehemently as some other cosmetic surgeries done to animals. I don't think the actual operation is inhumane but I think dogs should have their tails.
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post #9 of 55 Old 07-18-2019, 08:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MissLulu View Post
Question as a new horse owner. Lulu has a couple of really long whiskers and I have thought about trimming them to match the others (nothing shorter than 2"). Would that be o.k.? I have also considered trimming her ear hair so it doesn't stick out of her ears (does that make sense?) just trimming the long hairs that stick out beyond her ears.
We used to pinch the ear closed and trim out any hairs that stuck out beyond the edges. It neatened things up but still left hair inside for fly protection. Always seemed like a good compromise.

As for whiskers: at my barn we trimmed them down to a uniform 2-3" in length. So they still had them but they weren't long. Personally I wouldn't trim them at all now, though. And we never trimmed the eye ones at all.
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post #10 of 55 Old 07-19-2019, 08:45 AM
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Of good grief.
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