Prominent racing family’s mares rescued from Texas slaughter auction

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There is nothing illegal about it, but I was stunned to learn that one of the most prominent families in Texas horseracing may have been responsible for dumping 10 broodmares – including a daughter of Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew, one by leading sire Storm Cat, and a third that is a full sister to leading Texas stallion Valid Expectations – at the Round Mountain livestock auction 50 miles west of Austin, Texas, on Saturday. The Round Mountain sale is frequented by kill-buyers who ship the horses south of the border to be slaughtered for human consumption in Mexico.

The 10 mares were said by a witness to have been transported to the sale on vehicles belonging to Keith Asmussen’s Asmussen Horse Center of Laredo, Texas. Keith is a former Quarter horse jockey, and father of retired rider Cash Asmussen, an Eclipse Award-winning apprentice and champion jockey in France, as well as Eclipse Award-winning trainer Steve Asmussen.

Many of the mares only months earlier delivered 2012 foals and were bred back during the 2012 breeding season to Asmussen Horse Center stallions, according to reports from The Jockey Club.

Phone messages left at the Asmussen Horse Center on Monday and Tuesday were not returned.

Nine of the horses were rescued from likely slaughter by John R. Murrell, a Dallas businessman and Thoroughbred racehorse owner who previously served on the board of directors of the Thoroughbred Retirement Foundation. Murrell was alerted of the horses’ plight by Deborah Jones, a Southern Californian with a network of volunteers and sources throughout the United States who keep tabs on horses arriving at auctions frequented by kill buyers.

Murrell authorized Jones to purchase the horses on his behalf, and Jones told the Paulick Report she outbid kill buyers for seven of the mares, then bought two others privately for $100 more than the kill buyers bid. The 10th mare was believed to be in safe hands after being purchased by an individual not affiliated with the slaughter industry. Murrell paid $4,480 for the nine horses.

The rescued horses are now under the care of Donna Keen’s Remember Me Rescue, a 501(c)3 charity. Some of the former owners or breeders of the mares have stepped up with financial support to help provide for them.

The 10 mares are:

—20-year-old Valid Obsession, a full sister to sires Valid Expectations and Littleexpectations. She is reported to have a 2012 foal by Intimidator and was bred back to Asmussen Horse Center stallion Intimidator.

—17-year-old Luxury of Time, a daughter of Seattle Slew bred by Eclipse Award-winning Golden Eagle Stable. She was bred in 2012 to Intimidator.

—15-year-old Adios La Cucaracha, a daughter of Storm Cat with a 2012 foal by Intimidator and bred back to Intimidator.

—7-year-old Rhododendron, a daughter of Mutakddim bred by multiple Eclipse Award-winning breeder Nelson Bunker Hunt. She has 2012 foal by Seneca and was bred to Intimidator.

—12-year-old Our Revival, a daughter of Ide with a 2012 foal by Heckle and bred to Asmussen Horse Center stallion Primal Storm.

—20-year-old Endless Storm, a daughter of Storm Bird with a 2012 foal by Intimidator and bred to Intimidator.

—13-year-old Ethel Is Best, a daughter of Woodman bred in 2012 to Intimidator.

—14-year-old Karitsas Punch, a daughter of Two Punch bred to Asmussen Horse Center stallion Littleexpectations.

—15-year-old Fans Galore, a daughter of Lear Fan bred to Primal Storm.

—8-year-old Empress Jones, a daughter of Seneca Jones with a 2012 foal by Heckle and bred to Intimidator.

The Asmussens purchased most of the mares at breeding stock sales in Kentucky and Texas for prices ranging from $60,000 for Endless Storm to $2,500 for Karitsas Punch.

It was a busy week for Murrell. Three days after rescuing the Asmussen horses at the Round Mountain auction, he was at the state capitol in Austin testifying before a Senate Agricultural and Rural Affairs Committee meeting considering a recommendation to reverse the Texas ban on horse slaughter.

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  • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

    HARD CORE…PERIOD…KUDOS to Ms. Jones/Mr. Murrell/Owners/One Other Human for having HUGE HEARTS!!!…bet Mike Blowing (& a ton of other RESCUE ANGELS) of “OLD FRIENDS” likes hearing this kind of ENDING!!!…MOST Amercians do have a special place in their Hearts for ALL ANIMALS & HATE seeing them ABUSED…thank goodness…ps…& KUDOS to Ray Paulick & His Gang for having HUGE NADS in giving US the SCOOP!!!…ty…

  • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

    HARD CORE…PERIOD…

  • giftoffaith

    Thankfully, there are people who care and who keep an eye out for these horses. This is truly heart breaking to me, I will never understand the cold heartedness these people display. I truly can not get it.

  • giftoffaith

    Thankfully, there are people who care and who keep an eye out for these horses. This is truly heart breaking to me, I will never understand the cold heartedness these people display. I truly can not get it.

  • Watcher

    Not at all surprised at Keith Asmussen.

  • Watcher

    Not at all surprised at Keith Asmussen.

  • Ida Lee

    The seventh level of hell is not deep enough for these bastards.  Great reporting by the way…it’s hard to find out that even the so called “best” the industry has to offer are no better than the low-lives who enter the sport to make a buck and to hell with the horses who are used and discarded like garbage.

  • Ida Lee

    The seventh level of hell is not deep enough for these bastards.  Great reporting by the way…it’s hard to find out that even the so called “best” the industry has to offer are no better than the low-lives who enter the sport to make a buck and to hell with the horses who are used and discarded like garbage.

  • Really???

    I never would have thought this by the Asmussen clan,  but I guess their true colors are coming out.  Wow,  you never really know do you?

  • Really???

    I never would have thought this by the Asmussen clan,  but I guess their true colors are coming out.  Wow,  you never really know do you?

  • WILLIAM L. ANTON

    Can they do some type of penalty to the responsible/irrespnsible Asmussens that did this deed??!!

  • WILLIAM L. ANTON

    Can they do some type of penalty to the responsible/irrespnsible Asmussens that did this deed??!!

  • Beach Bum

    No offense, BUT IF YOU WANT TO HELP, HELP WITH YOUR WALLET–a lot of these mares, bred back this year, are probably in foal and horse care is never cheap.  FYI I am not affiliated with Remember Me Rescue except as a giver.  Get on Donna’s website and donate for them all– 

    http://www.teamkeen.com/

    And I for one await word from the Asmussens on why it is they dumped all these mares. 

    Prayers for all and God bless the rescuers… 

     

    • Beach Bum

       Oh, and ps thanks to Mr. Paulick for the report.  We can do something about problems we know about… :-) 

    • http://www.facebook.com/joclaire.corcoran Jo-Claire Corcoran

      The Assmusens need to step up and cover the full cost and expenses this rescue will encounter. 

      • Beach Bum

         That would be great; but, with respect, are you holding your breath?  Neither am I… :-( 

  • Beach Bum

    No offense, BUT IF YOU WANT TO HELP, HELP WITH YOUR WALLET–a lot of these mares, bred back this year, are probably in foal and horse care is never cheap.  FYI I am not affiliated with Remember Me Rescue except as a giver.  Get on Donna’s website and donate for them all– 

    http://www.teamkeen.com/

    And I for one await word from the Asmussens on why it is they dumped all these mares. 

    Prayers for all and God bless the rescuers… 

     

  • Beach Bum

     Oh, and ps thanks to Mr. Paulick for the report.  We can do something about problems we know about… :-) 

  • wallyhorse

    Great to see the rescue, but it should never have gotten to the point of that in the first place.

    Hopefully, we will find out the whole story, but yes, the Assmussens do certainly have some explaining to do (and I don’t mean of the “it was all an honest mistake” kind either).

  • wallyhorse

    Great to see the rescue, but it should never have gotten to the point of that in the first place.

    Hopefully, we will find out the whole story, but yes, the Assmussens do certainly have some explaining to do (and I don’t mean of the “it was all an honest mistake” kind either).

  • Meyer1127

    And Sue Wallis and other greedy —– are just licking their chops to open slaughter houses in Texas and other states to make it easier for these kind of low lifes to dump what they no longer want and forget about them.These are the BREEDERS AND TRAINERS That need to be made a BIGGGG EXAMPLE OF.
    Drugging, killing, abuse, sounds like cartels and gang members not upstanding horse breeders and trainers.
    The entire industy needs to hang it’s head in SHAME for what is being allowed to go on with the horses and only a slap on the wrist, or turn their eyes away and pretend it doesn’t exist or stand and do nothing at all.

  • Meyer1127

    And Sue Wallis and other greedy —– are just licking their chops to open slaughter houses in Texas and other states to make it easier for these kind of low lifes to dump what they no longer want and forget about them.These are the BREEDERS AND TRAINERS That need to be made a BIGGGG EXAMPLE OF.
    Drugging, killing, abuse, sounds like cartels and gang members not upstanding horse breeders and trainers.
    The entire industy needs to hang it’s head in SHAME for what is being allowed to go on with the horses and only a slap on the wrist, or turn their eyes away and pretend it doesn’t exist or stand and do nothing at all.

  • Guest

    So, it appears the Asmussen family prefers their horses get a knife to their neck as opposed to spending a hundred bucks for a humane end?   Absolutely disgusting on so many levels.  Shame on the Asmussen’s.

    • http://www.facebook.com/ziggy.pop.37 Ziggy Pop

      And double shame on them as these mares are in foal!!!

      • melneey

        Sounds to me like they were “culling” their herd, but MY GOD!  Worthless POS, the whole lot of them.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000244251848 Glenn Craven

        Well, they were bred-back, but may or may not be in foal I suppose. In fact, on the older mares my first speculation — and it would be just that, speculation — is that they DIDN’T get in-foal, hence the decision to dispense with them. … But from what we can read here and the JC’s records, we can only determine that all of the mares were bred. No way of knowing (without vetting them now) whether all, some or none are actually in-foal.

  • Guest

    So, it appears the Asmussen family prefers their horses get a knife to their neck as opposed to spending a hundred bucks for a humane end?   Absolutely disgusting on so many levels.  Shame on the Asmussen’s.

  • Cindy Rullman

    Ray, thank you for having the guts to report this.

    • http://twitter.com/CathyAtkinson1 Cathy Atkinson

       Major kudos to Ray for spreading the word. I am just sick of this.  These people are not in dire straits financially.  They absolutely have the know-how and facilities to retrain their barren mares for riding homes and resell them that way.  Heck, most of these weren’t even barren.  WTF?

    • Gail Vacca

      Ditto! Thank you for all you do, Ray!

  • Guest2

    Why breed them all this year if you’re just going to dump them at a kill auction a few months later?

    • Otis

      Exactly what I was thinking. Plus, it sounds as if some of the mares had foals at foot. Cannot wait to hear the rest of the story. Thoroughly disgusted.

      • Beach Bum

         I realize that there are situations where “what they look like” are not necessarily “what they are”.  Bottom line here is that these mares, possibly in foal, were found at this auction.  I believe “why” is a valid question. 

        What bothers me most is that people that seem to have means sometimes are amongst those that DON’T EVEN TRY; ie, were any of the equine rescues in TX contacted before these mares ended up at the auction?  Correct me if I’m wrong, but it doesn’t look like it… :-(

        • http://www.facebook.com/ziggy.pop.37 Ziggy Pop

          You would not believe how awful owners can be. There is a guy from Canada, (with horses at Saratoga) that sent a mare (8 years old I think) to slaughter after she didn’t take and her foal died. Not one, but two people stepped forward to buy her, for more than killer price, and the owner would NOT sell her, and sent her to slaughter. The mare was dead within 48 hours. Despicable.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/LTUX7NMZ2YSUORUV6IIBFSOYJM hadrian

            Princess Tiffany was a 12yo broodmare. On the track she ran 22 times, winning 6. After her career was over she became broodmare. According to reports, she lost her last foal. Despite the best efforts of her breeder, and others, to buy her back from her current owner, he refused, and sent her to slaughter. She was killed in a Canadian slaughterhouse on April 26. 

          • Beach Bum

            Again, disgusting… 

          • NorthStar326

            Then we shouldn’t sell horses without a written “first right of refusal” clause and a “no slaughter” clause.  Sure there will always be those that don’t comply, but far more will comply.  Breach of contract lawsuit can be more money than it’s worth to be a low-life like the one who refused to sell Princess Tiffany back to her breeder.  That is just a sick human being.  I’d say animal but that would be an insult to the animals. 

          • Transitions Thoroughbreds

            That is not quite what happened hadrian.  It was not her breeder that attempted to buy her back, it was her recent connections and they did send an international wire transfer to save her and she was temporarily safe.  An unfortunate turn of events, orchestrated by the individual who signed the kill sheet brought about the death of that mare.  The money was NOT refused by the recepient.  There was most certainly a web of lies including a falsified kill sheet.

          • Mary2

            Ziggy – the name of the owner you speak of needs to be stated, and the owner contacted for a reason this was done.  Also, the names of the two people who stepped up and thier statements.  That is how change is made.  Your statement here does nothing to help change the anything.  All of us have to stop avoiding giving names.  Kudos to Paulick Report for covering the current instance in detail.

          • Wingtips

            Paul Labe Sr recently got caught in PA sending a homebred from track to slaughter.  He was banned from entering his horses, which are homebreds.  Guess what?  They now run under his son, Paul Labe Jr.  Nothing changes, including Sr’s fat PA breeder’s awards.  This is an industry with little shame.  Outing people really doesn’t matter. 

          • Otis

            …and Paul Labe, Sr. Is a double jerk as he owns or used to own the sire of the filly you describe. The Horse of Delaware Valley wrote a sweet “aw shucks” article about him and his operation a few years ago. Wow, these creeps are at every level. It makes one wonder at what point do these people’s psyches not develop properly.

          • Roisin

            Well said ! The Thoroughbred industry is shameless. One need only look at how the trainers who habitually violate medication rules are given a slap on the wrist and then it is business as usual

          • AngelaFromAbilene

            Look up the gelding Cub Scout who ran in Ohio for a prominent owner/breeder/trainer.  Cub Scout bought and paid for their farm and when he was unable to run, they sent him to a killer sale.

          • Ann Taylor

            to ZIGGY (and Mary2) — The NAMES make enormous impact — without, you have nothing but a story line.  The power of legit media can truly mean the difference between life and death.

            sidebar:  After Silver Charm’s Preakness win, R.P. stopped by my office with his winning ticket “to donate to the TRF” ….  many racing journalists & media members love the sport, but have passion for the horse. Ray Paulick fits like no other.

          • May Flower

            Out the SOB!

          • Beach Bum

             Disgusting–sounds like the dirtbag that wouldn’t let the small farm owner keep Exceller.  :-( 

          • Convene

             Yup! I’ve seen it happen sometimes. It’s beyond despicable! Even if you’re so money-grubbing you want the sale price, why on earth would you refuse even MORE money just so you can have the poor creature slaughtered! As I said, beyond despicable.

    • portia

      They probably didn’t the stallions this year, but their names on the reports of mares bred will boost the stallions credibility.

      • yes dear

        It does nothing to boost the stallions anything if they don’t get in foal and or make it to the track….and then they still have to perform. A stallion with no prodgeny is just another stallion!

      • http://www.facebook.com/ziggy.pop.37 Ziggy Pop

         So it is fraud?

        • Sunny

           Totally not fraud.  The Jockey Club requires every mare a stallion covers to be reported in order to receive papers on a foal, called a live cover report.  All it takes is one cover and it shows up as the mare was bred.  Does not mean they are in foal at all, just means they were bred.  In order to get papers, once th emare foals the owner or farm has to report it as a live foal, and the stud fee is due in order to get the registration package.  Likely, to sell the mares as they did, they did not catch.  This late in the year, they would have confirmed the pregnancies and announced it as in foal.  On the other hand, if the mares ARE in foal, they may hove done it to increase the chances the mares would be bought by non kill buyers.  I reserve judgement on the pregnancies until ultrasound or palpation confirms it.  Only the stallion farm can confirm anything at this point, or the Assmussens themselves.

    • Lisa Wintermote

      I would bet that most or all of these mares did not get in foal. That makes her a liability as she still has to be fed, wormed, vaccinated, shod, etc and there will be no foal in the spring to sell. Also, if she’s barren due to age, infection, cysts, etc. it may be more difficult and expensive to get her in foal next year.

      • http://www.facebook.com/ziggy.pop.37 Ziggy Pop

        It doesn’t matter. If one cannot afford the care, they have no business owning the horses to begin with.

        • NorthStar326

          Exactly Ziggy.  And that should be a requirement to be in the breeding and owning of racehorses.  One of the most giving (and beneficial to society) animals on the planet, has less rights than the Delta Smelt!

      • Livelybarb

        And your point is?

      • Sevencentsstable

        Agreed. I doubt any of them are pregnant. Bet the Assmussens are wishing they had explored other avenues (AS THEY SHOULD HAVE, really)!

      • Lindalu

        And your point would be what exactly?  Are you saying that this is the reason for being sent to slaughter?  There are never good reasons for this. Look at the Chuckwagon industry in Canada – they regularly rescue horses from the slaughter houses for their herds.  There is never a good reason for cruelty and I too would like to hear what their rationale was.

        Thank you for reporting this atrocity.

        • Lisa Wintermote

          Pls don’t misunderstand me. I was merely answering the question as to “why”. I do NOT condone the actions of the owners in any way. Nor do I feel those are valid reasons at all. I am the proud owner of an OTQH that I bought out of a kill pen at the age of 6. I went on to outride on this horse at 2 major racetracks and he is now the mascot at one of them. He also accompanied UR to the post in the KY Derby this year. Not bad for a throw-away horse huh?

  • Cindy Rullman

    Ray, thank you for having the guts to report this.

  • Guest2

    Why breed them all this year if you’re just going to dump them at a kill auction a few months later?

  • Gail Vacca

    This type of dispicable behavior comes as no surprise whatsoever to those of us in the trenches who pull thoroughbreds out of kill pens on a nearly daily basis. Big name breeders are no different than your average run of the mill backyard breeder. Its all about the money and sadly, not many in this industry are inclined to do right by their horses when they no longer have use for them.

    The Assmussen’s should be banned from further registering any foals unless and until they provide proof that they have implemented a better solution for humanely managing their unwanted breeding stock. That goes for EVERYONE involved in the breeding end of the industry.  The sad reality is that while these particular mares were spared a grisly death in a slaughter plant, countless numbers of innocent broodmares are not so lucky. Positively disgraceful.   

    • Lisa Wintermote

      Bless you for what u do! That being said, please don’t paint all breeders with the same brush. Some of the big name breeders get it right. Jen at 3 Chimneys is amazing, the Stronachs have arguably the best program out there with their own retirement and adoption program and facilities in both Fl and Canada. Whether big or small, the responsibility lies with the breeder and unfortunately some will only do the right thing if they’re shamed into it! Thank you Ray for not flinching from this unpleasant side of the industry!

      • Gail Vacca

        Lisa..it is agreed that there are some who are doing a wonderful job in providing for horses that are no longer productive, but sadly, they are too far and few between. Every day of the year these poor horses are being dumped at kill pens and for each horse lucky enough to be rescued, dozens more are slaughtered. These horses come from every nook and cranny of the US including some of our so-called finest breeding farms. My group rescued a pregnant mare from an auction kill pen a couple years back… the foal, now a two-year old is by current leading freshman sire Magna Graduate. He has his own website – http://www.magnafortuna.weebly.com Just goes to show that despite the outcry for change in this industry, the horses continue to suffer each and every day that these changes are denied:(    

        • Victoria Jensen

          Gail, great story about Taxi. Tx for posting the website. 

        • desertrailrat

           How cool, loved the story and the pics.  Best of luck to Taxi when he hits the track, you guys keep up the great work!

      • Sevencentsstable

        It is actually the owners who bear the responsibility for what happens to their horses. In this case owners are breeders, so there you have it. But I see no reason why the first owner of a horse bears any more responsibility for it than the last owner or the 2nd owner, or the 3rd owner… I believe the last owner of the horse bears the brunt of the responsibility for where they send it!

        • James Staples

          NO DOUBT!!!…

      • May Flower

        3Chimneys and Stronach are exceptions not the rule. How many horses has a single owner/breeder like Ben Warren sent to slaughter? Only he and his enablers and killers know that if anyone has cared to count.

        • desertrailrat

           You are absolutely correct, many of the Warren horses have ended up in bad situations, I recall a large group of mares that were rescued a few years ago.  The Warren business model was to home breed tons of horses with cheap pedigrees knowing some would be able to run and make money in purses or through the claim box while the countless others were victims of wastage and ended up in many bad places.  THANK GOD he had decided to mostly quit the breeding business.

          • stillriledup

             You mean i won’t have to see half a dozen nickel bred horses named Warren running in So Cal on every racing card every day in the near future? Sad day for sure.

          • NorthStar326

            The sad part is they aren’t cheap on personality or abiltiy to give to humans.  I’m still looking to see what happened to Warren’s Lady Slew.

        • Marsha S.

          While I applaud your candor and willingness to speak out I still believe facts should be attained before making accusations. Mr. Warren had been duped by an unscrupulous so called “buyer” on the mares that Mr. Warren ultimately spent a small fortune on to get back.  I have a few unsettled scores myself, but using social networks without all the facts is unsettling.

    • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

      Gail.. thank you for all you do.. and I know you are right when you say that they are found almost DAILY… The industry needs to step up.. it is TIME NOW! 

    • Clearlyambiguous

       i must be missing something.   how are these horses any different than the 100,000 others that are slaughtered every year, and sent to Mexico thanks to the work of folks such as urself / is it because the name Asmussen is attached to them?

      • Guest

        I think because the owners had the deep pockets to do right by them, and didn’t. 

        • May Flower

          And if they don’t have deep pockets they still must do what’s right, including not owning and especially breeding more horses. 

          • Clearlyambiguous

             My understanding is that the horses were put into a sale.  Anybody could have bought them,  including anybody posting here.  Instead what apparently  occurred is  that this lady from  CA likely pouncing on  the opportunity to keep her website jangling had the horses pulled from the sale.  Who knows whether the Asmussens would have bought these  horses back themselves or whether this part of the Asmussen clan has deep pockets.  I agree  to do what’s right by the horse.  However, that is a complex Q.  These horses likely are now on a downward spirtal into the abuse and neglect of OTB.  Maybe sometimes its better to quit interfering with end of life decisions for unwanted animals in the name of “rescue”.   I’ll believe these  horses have been rescued when the rescuer puts up her purse to support them.  Unlikely.

          • NorthStar326

            Anybody that knows which end of a horse eats and which end poops, knows damn well of the high probability of going to slaughter from those auctions.  Seriously…in this economy, how many of those mares do you think would have been bought by decent, caring folks?  Give me a break.  Surely you are smarter than that…or maybe you are just one of the folks that believes that sort of thing is okay.  And pretending to be naive or pleading the person who brought them to the auction was naive is too pathetic for words.  That is a “game” that has long since lost its believability.

          • inresponse

            clearly, clearlyambiguous, you have no knowledge of the person or people involved in this rescue, nor what motivates them.  As a person who has helped  save the lives of 55 tb horses in Oregon recently, the motiovation could simply be wanting to see good, sound horses go to good homes instead of being subject to the horrendous cruelty of slaughter.  Just watch a video of it sometime, any normal person would be nausiated by it.  If the animals were lame or sick or dying I could understand slaughter in a humane way, but not healthy unwanted horses.

          • Clearlyambiguous

             to reply–this is the problem that exists for the horse. u r willing to put a helpless animal through day after day of abuse so u can change the final moments.  for horse welfare–concentrate on the  abuse and neglect and develop a humane slaughter and transport in the usa.  it’s hardly all that difficult.

          • Beckie Irons

            Racing has nowhere near the glamour, public interests, or
            positive image that it did when I fell in love with it 35 years ago. While it
            may be legal to dump old broodmares or used-up racehorses at low-end auctions,
            the Asmussens have certainly given the PETA types that want to shut us down
            anyway another reason to say we only care about our horses when they are making
            a buck for us.

            Whatever your views on slaughter and selling off your older
            or unsound horses, we all have to realize that we are alienating potential fans
            and adding to our negative image with the animal-loving general public.

            I don’t know what your interest is in the industry, but I
            have been a small owner and breeder and worked for a number of prominent international-level
            breeding and racing operations for the past 35 years.  The industry I love is shrinking, farms are
            closing, racetracks are closing, attendance is down, sales other than the selected
            venues are down, RNAs at just about every sale are up, there is no long-term
            pretty picture that I can see.

            IMO we simply cannot afford to keep turning a blind eye to
            this stuff, it is killing our image and our bottom line. It is not in the
            industry’s long-term economic  interest to
            risk running off horse-loving potential new owners and breeders because of the
            growing public perception that we view animals as magnificent as these
            Thoroughbreds as a disposable item to be cast aside when they are no longer considered
            useful. You may rationalize and excuse, but the general public only sees dead
            and cast-off horses and the impression that nobody cares.

            BTW, I spoke with “the lady from CA” several times last fall
            when I was trying to find homes for two OTTBs that someone dumped in my neck of
            the woods. So far as I know she does not have a website, and she certainly won
            my respect and gave me quite an education during our conversations. Both horses
            found good homes, one a truly great home, through her efforts. What have you
            done lately to help find homes for any of these horses?

          • Beach Bum

             I have known the people concerned to work tirelessly for thoroughbred rescue. 

          • Roseandjoesmith

            I seriously doubt the Asmussens would have bought the horses back since they sent them to the auction in the first place. It seems obvious the horses were not wanted any longer for whatever reason. It is a sad to say that these unfortunate horses were surely bound for a long journey to a horrific end in Mexico. I have 7 “retired ” thoroughbreds and yes they were “rescued ”. They came from the low level claiming ranks at various tracks where horses are injected and otherwise medicated so they can race and keep on racing. The lucky ones break down which ends the abuse. The end for the vast majority of the tough survivors is slaughter. We gain their trust, we train them, they do our bidding and many earn a lot of money and in the end we betray them. There is a better way. Slaughter is not the answer.   

          • Ajsapollo

            I would rather see a horse go to slaughter than to starve to death.  There is entirely TOOOOO much of that now that the US slaughter houses have been shut down.  It doesn’t make sense to me why the mares were bred back if the intention was to sent them to slaughter.  As sad as it is, horse slaughter is a necessity.  Without it horses have no value & are treated as such.

          • Ccfarm

            Are you kidding? There are no ore starving horses now then there were before slaughter plants closed. Horses are being shipped to slaughter at a GREATER rate than when the plants were closed.

          • Roseandjoesmith

            I really get tired of the mantra better slaughter than starvation. Why do horses have to starve ?? There is too much irresponsible breeding going on. It is all about money and ego with little or no thought for the welfare of the animal…use and abuse, then slaughter.The practice of slaughter with all it’s ugly details enables irresponsible human behavior. I suggest all in favor of slaughter observe the process first hand and then give it their stamp of approval. 

          • Nishchick2001

             And why in your sick mind do the options starvation or slaughter even become options to chose from for a horse. I hope to **** you dont own any animals.

          • Convene

             I would rather they simply euthanized them if there was no other solution. Better than the terror and horror of the kill pen and slaughterhouse.

          • drjude518

            amen

          • May Flower

            Pathetic excuse. Slaughter and if not starved to death? What about nailing the bastards hard to prevent abuse in the first place? It is not because some/many starve horses that horses should be slaughtered! The abusers need to be punished not the horses.

          • Ronnie

            Dear Ajaapollo, With all respect, I presume you have bought and drank the Kool-Aid.  Horse slaughter is NOT a necessity.  With strength of character and desire to know more, i.e., educate, visit http://www.kaufmanzoning.net/  I thank you.

          • ziggypop

            Most of the “starving” that goes on is done by the “killer” industry itself. Too thin, ill, lame are either rejected at the border, or rejected by the slaughter house. It is the drivers of the killer trailers who dump these poor things into the desert to die. OR it is the nasty little tracks, trainers and owners who drop them off in the desert to die.

          • Horseluv978

            No horse should be slaughtered ever! Most who go to slaughter would be adopted but they are not given the chance, had folks not stepped in those Assumussen horses would have been slaughtered. Yet someone saved them and almost all are already adopted. It is sick to slaughter a horse and not even try to get them to a good home. Horses are sent to Canada and Mexico for slaughter. So yes we don’t slaughter in the U.S. but horses are still sent to their deaths in other countries. They are not killed humanely. They deserve way way better

          • Carolina Prudom

            It is quite possible that the mares were bred back but either never took or later lost the foal.

            The reason most horsemen object to slaughter is the conditions the horses must endure on the way to the slaughter house. For example they can legally be shipped on a truck for 28 hours with no food or water.

          • Clearlyambiguous

             u r indeed a “rescue”person, and applaud ur efforts. My Q here–these are the same people who’se actions have consigned hundreds of thousands of horses to the trip to  Mexico.  Why should they receive any credibility with what they have “achieved” for the  horse, whatever is the correct end for unwanted horses?

            My take is that OTB in general is 75% neglect and abuse.  We’ll never hear from this rescue  profiteer–horse shuffler–what happens to her “rescues”.  Most  of them  will suffer abuse and neglect and be in the same slaughter pipeline most of them  within 12 months.

            These auctions and the “kill” buyers serve a regrettable but necessary function in horse welfare.  the energy needs to be put  into humane usa slaughter and humane transport instead of the political agenda of these types who instead of horse welfare have as their goal that they just want to  “win”, never mind all the neglected horses.

          • Mary Overman

            There is no way to humanely slaughter horses.  The state of the art Canadian plant has proven that.  And there is no money available to enforce humane transport.  You can make all the rules you want but cheap, crappy, inhumane transport will still be the order of the day.  I mean – how hard is it, really, to call the vet out to put the horses down, then call the renderer?  The one and only reaspon to send to auction instead of euthanize at home is $.

          • Clearlyambiguous

             if u  ever owned a horse u would fully understand how hard that is. i disagree completely that humane slaughter and  transport is not possible, even if one’s final moments, as opposed to one’s life in OTB abuse and neglect, is the emphasis. my guess would be that that slaughter employees do their jobs well and minimize abuse to extent possible.

          • Freespirit

             I have owned plenty of horses and still do, doesn’t sound hard to me.  What you are suggesting is the impossible – Mary Overman has it right.

          • Clearlyambiguous

            Freespirit, sorry but  i  disbelieve u own horses  since horse owners would never  speak in this  manner.  for the sake of discussion, let’s say u do own a horse  and u call up ur  vet (without compunction, from ur post) to come in and euthenize.  this is  the anti-slaughter  mantera.  Yet there are lawsuits  in the human arena claiming euthenasia cruel and unusual under u.s. constitution.

            Bring AAEP into slaughter.  They will develop the most humane way.

            Humane transport is easy.  Just limit the number of passengers. 

          • Freespirit

             As a matter of fact, I own 22 horses.  And I have euthanized several horses over the years when they were sick and there was no hope and it was necessary.  I have no idea why you even made that statement.  It is not my belief there is a humane way to get horses to the slaughter houses economically and humanely nor  do I believe they can be slaughtered humanely.  That’s my belief.

          • May flower

            Slaughter is not answer, responsible ownership and breeding, and abuse prevention are key. A culture change is in order including at the AHC. 

          • Rosiepaint

            These horses are under the care of Remember Me Rescue. They will be adopted to approved homes with a contract that states if circumstances change the horse goes back to RMR – you WILL NOT see these mares back in the pipeline.

          • Roseandjoesmith

            Oh, yes we need humane USA slaughter so it can be business as usual. Readily available slaughter does absolutely nothing to improve bad human behavior and, may even encourage it. Anytime something is tolerated you get more of it as it becomes the norm. There is lots of money made in the thoroughbred industry, in it’s triumphs and it’s miseries. And many view slaughter as a trouble free disposal system while making a few more $$. From start to finish, the industry is riddled with problems such deception, animal abuse and even outhright fraud. Therefore, there needs to be a multipronged approach to problem solving. 
            Horse auctions and kill buyers exist because of irresponsible beahavior from start to finish. And it is a sad commentry if slaughter and it’s inherent cruelty is considerd the only humane solution. What on earth is humane about crowding hapless creatures, some old and infirm, some injured and most terrified into a trailer to begin a long miserable journey to a horrific end ? 

          • Ajsapollo

            Donna Keen & Remember Me Rescue are very real with what they do.  I have an ex-horse grazing in my back yard she rescued.  I drove 600 miles to visit her operation, meet her staff & bring home a TB no longer able to race.  Look up Remeber Me Rescue on facebook, the brown/bay TB drinking sweet ice tea out of a blue plastic glass now lives in the hills of Arkansas.  That should prove she & I “put up our purse to support them”.  I have bought & sold to killer buyers.  They don’t bid any higher than what their profit margin will allow & some horses are too dangerous & need to be put down.  I’ve used the money from those slaughtered to support the good ones in the past.  P.S. Now I have cows to support my “horse” habit!!! 

          • Allieconrad

            Seriously?you just admitted to selling a horse to slaughter and Remember Me rescue adopted a horse to you? Why not just euthanize the dangerous horse?

          • May Flower

            No foal is born dangerous. Again, why should horses paid with an horrible end because they were abused and became unmanageable by bottom feeders?

          • Anita Xanax

            HA!! John Henry and Kelso both were. I knew John Henry’s yearling groom and he said the horse had already mauled a groom by the time he was 8 months old. If they hadn’t gelded those two they never would have raced, too vicious.

          • Lisa Wintermote

            I agree Anita. BC Turf winner Bucks Boy was gelded for that reason and I have a 12 yr old Paint that is the same way. I bought him at 10 mos and he had already broken a mans collar bone when he savaged him in the stall. I know the people I bought him from and had been around him from birth. He was never abused in any way, nor was Bucks Boy.

          • Roisin

            I recall that John Henry finally got the right trainer who was able to manage him without problems and everyone knows the end of the story. 

          • Freespirit

             Glad you have moved on to cows since you think slaughter is okay for horses under certain circumstances.  Even dangerous horses can be humanely euthanized. 

          • WT

            After being bred to junk stallions, who would buy them? I don’t understand why they would breed them back in the first place if they planned to dump them.

          • Freespirit

            They obviously didn’t get in foal is why they were dumping them. 

          • May Flower

            You mean humane end of life like vet assisted euthanasia or a well placed bullet? Tough to do with an 8 year old mare, huh? 

      • http://www.facebook.com/joclaire.corcoran Jo-Claire Corcoran

        They threw away broodmares, several which had just foaled and most were already bred back.  That is an irresponsible breeder.  And coming from a racing stable which claims to be anti-slaughter then it’s twice the insult. 

        • Sadiecarl

          I have a question: what would the tax/business consequences be for “losing” 9 broodmares that were in-foal to one of the farm’s stallions, as opposed to in foal by another stallion belonging to another farm and/or just being listed as “barren.” Is there another financial angle here we’re not seeing – in addition to the mares being “thrown away?”

          • Cynthia McGinnes

            First, just because the mares were listed as bred back, it doesn’t mean they were in foal when they went through the sale..I suspect most of them were not or they wouldn’t have been put in the sale. Second, they were bred back to the farm’s stallions because then they wouldn’t have to put more money in the mares by paying outside stud fees. Third, if the mares were not worth keeping, the IRS would applaud a business plan that allowed the farm to dispose of the mares and their upkeep any way at all.From a tax standpoint there were many more reasons to dispose of the mares than keep them

      • NorthStar326

        There are thousands of unanamed, unheralded horses saved each year by folks such as Gail Vacca.  Having put up the money myself for several, it is beyond heartbreaking when you CAN’T save them all.  And people like me shouldn’t have to save other people’s irresponsibly and inhumanely discarded horses.   The only reason these horses made the news is because they were connected to a well-known name.  One who, IMO, should have been thrown out of racing a long time ago.  But the name is not why they were rescued.  It is what opened the door to folks that may not have known, but wanted to do something.  It is common practice to attempt to notify past connections or the breeder, to help.  Usually, it is assumed the people don’t know about how their horses (former horses) may have ended up.  BUT IN THIS CASE, there was an alleged witness to who brought them there.

      • Sunny

         Part of the problem with racing.  The TB’s can be traced, so there is more attention called because they can pin someone to it.  Only 27,000 TBs were registered last year, 61,000 QH.  Take a look at a stockyard, the vast majority of horses there are stock horses, drafts and ponies.  But because TB’s have a name forever attached via tattoo, the industry takes a kicking on every single horse identified.  Not condoning what Assmusen did, but it’s always the TB breeders/owners/trainers who get outed with nary a word about the stock horse breeders who produce 3 times the foals in any given year.

        • NorthStar326

          The problem is solved by requiring that all horses be registered and/or licensed.  Just like dogs.  The fees could be used to help these horses that end up this way and to prosecute the owners for neglect.  Anyone who objects to having their animal traceable to them, shouldn’t be allowed to own or breed animals.

          • Dc

            Oh that certainly solves the problem every back yard breeder will jump at the chance to register their horses, just like every one jumps right up and tags their dogs.

        • AngelaFromAbilene

          Not just TB’s.  QH’s, Arabians, Paints, Appaloosa’s and mules all run on tracks in the US.  All are lip tatooed.  Any licensed owner or trainer can take the tatoo # to the Racing Secretary at their track and have the animals form run.

      • Convene

         The horses aren’t different; the consignors are. Because they know better.

      • Ronnie

        It is really no different, an Asmussen horse or not. A horse is a horse is a horse…to slaughter.  But very importantly, here is a good example, the *message.  This is a prominent breeder, from a well-known, high-profile, multi-million $$$ family. Money made from horses.  Importantly, these were also “high-profile” mares. Any horse owner should be responsible at the end of their horse’s life, giving the gift of humane euthanasia by vet injection.  But to expose those who make millions from their horses and will not pay the $200+ for euthanasia/burial/cremation/rendering, is bringing horse slaughter more into the public’s awareness. And the GREED!  And not acknowledging a horse as a sentient being.  Just an “It.” A THING that is disposable.  Many still do know know horses go to slaughter.  In addition, those that DO know of slaughter, many do not know that ANY horse can go through the heinous horror of slaughter. How many racetrack goers are aware that the horses they see racing for their lives just might, within minutes, be off the track and onto the meat truck at the back track? Just one example of how and where horses are obtained for slaughter.    

      • zsuzsanna04

        Clearlyambiguous – there is absolutely no difference whatsoever.  Anyone who abandons a horse to an uncertain fate is reprehensible.  A sales slip does not come with an automatic ‘pass the buck’ stamp or a ‘get out of jail card’.  If you dump it, you’re an asshat.  End of story.

        If a breeder no longer wants a horse, they should grow a pair of cojones and put an honest bullet in it.  Hoping that the auction ring audience is filled with nice little girls waiting for their ‘dream horsie’ is horse-shi*t.  And it’s a fact that most educated, intelligent adults possess.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_DMVDPXMEECFBB2SRIGKIG5CO3Q John

      Thank you for what you and all the other unnamed compassionate folks like yourself do for this game beyond the brief few years of glory our equine heroes enjoy. As an owner, breeder and gambler it is MY responsibility to do everything I can to make sure this fate is not in store for any horse in my fold.

      • Gail Vacca

        John…if everyone shared your determination to own responsibility for the fate of their horses, rescue groups like mine would gladly be out of business. Our slogan reads…every horse has an owner. every owner has a responsibility. oh if only people would consider this BEFORE they lead their mares to the breeding shed.

    • NY Owner

      Every time I read one of these stories I have more respect for the folks who “police” these sales and less for the owners and trainers who discard their animals but please do not lump all breeders in this category.  Most of the small breeders I know in the upstate NY area, myself included, take pride in following the careers of our horses and responsiblity for the ones that need safe, caring homes after their racing careers are over.  Unfortunately, the 30 or so retirees I have placed in the last 10 years don’t get any press for being trail horses or family pets.

    • Jim

      Please tell me why the Asmussens should be banned from anything. What they did is no different than cattle farmers selling their cows at auction, knowing full well that the beef will end up on a plate somewhere…and their hides on your feet probably. 

      I can only guess you’re outraged because you have some intrinsic belief that horses are somehow different than the other livestock – cows, pigs, sheep, chickens, et al – that are slaughtered daily in the U.S. for human consumption. This distinction is ridiculous and without merit. Americans don’t eat horse meat, but citizens in dozens of other countries do. If the Asmussens choose to supply inventory to these markets it is entirely their right, and it does not make them any less humane than you or anybody else. It’s called free enterprise.

      If you can attest that you do not eat meat of any kind, nor wear leather or fur, than I will respect your position. I will disagree with it, but I will respect you for your consistency. Anything short of that reeks of hypocricy and a self-serving resignation to protect only those animals fortune enough to be born with manes and tails.

      • Roisin

        I don’t know about you, but I have a different relationship with my horses and dogs than with cattle and pigs. Yes, other cultures consume horse flesh and dog flesh also. Maybe we should supply dog meat for export too and  cchalk it up to “free enterprise”. Your argument is old and tired.

        • Jim

          I think you just made my point. You’re infusing a human element into your pro-horse argument that not everybody shares. Some people consider horses as livestock, not unlike cattle, pigs, et al. Because you don’t – you obviously treat yours as a pet – that doesn’t mean those that treat horses as livestock are inhumane. It’s an entirely different perception from yours but one that is shared by the majority of people in the world.

          Using your logic, the owners of a pot-bellied pig might think you’re ghastly because you eat bacon. Would you like to be held up for public ridicule by the National Pot-Bellied Pig Association because you like a ham sandwich every now and then? I think not…

          • Roisin

            Jim, you are just a gadfly. Your assumptions are way off the mark.

      • Guest

        Jim, you do know these mares would have received medications that make it against the law to sell them for human consumption?  

        Cattle etc have been raised and monitored as food animals; horses have been managed as companion and performance animals. Totally different drug list.

        We don’t name our cattle and give them retirement parties in the winner’s circle. To send a horse to slaughter after the hoopla of a racing career is like the Roman Coliseum… hopefully we’ve evolved a bit in the last couple thousand years.  I think we have; over 80% of Americans including horsemen now want Congress to stop horse slaughter.

        Back to the drugs — If one dose of BUTE in a horse’s lifetime is too dangerous to allow into the food supply, what kind of human being could dump mares that got fertility drugs – can cause miscarriage in women -  or butcher racers that got EPOs or off label performance enhancers like Dermophen?

        The illegality of common horse drugs – including Bute and wormers – in food animals is a settled matter. With that, US horse slaughter should be, too.

        What’s weird is as clear as the food safety laws are, you still hear people trying to justify horse slaughter with some cockamamie idea, as if giving people cancer is, I dunno, irrelevant.

        • Jim

          So sorry, Guest, I didn’t realize you were privy to the vet records of the subject mares. Even assuming they had been treated with medications, I would think the responsibility for ensuring the quality of the meat would fall on those that buy and process the meat, as opposed to the Asmussens.

          And you obviously don’t frequent 4-H competitions or state fairs: cattle are quite often named and celebrated, especially after winning a blue ribbon in some arbitrary competition. Thousands of these subsequently end up being slaughted for human consumption. And that’s different how?

    • Redwillow63

      Gail–Great job in what you relate in writing.  I have given the whole issue of the right to own and breed much thought.  As a former breeder and owner, I finally came to the conclusion that many people really shouldn’t be breeding horses and producing unwanted foals which end up as food on the table for some foreign country.  The whole issue of slaughter would not be so if the horses were treated in a strict humane way and certainly mares should not be sent in a in foal condition.  I am against equine slaughter and for getting the more irresponsible people out of the breeding business.  I have viewed on-line “shows” of guys breeding an in heat mare just for the sake of getting some kind of “high” off of it.  This is what the various videos looked to me and they call it “Breeding Horses”.  Clearly, there are too many unwanted horses around because of irresponsible people.  Then there are those people like you keyed about, that’s not too clear thinking and responsible either.

    • T. Mclellan

      What I find utterly disturbing is the fact that ALL these mares were rebred, as I understand from the listing describing them.It’s not bad enough to send them for slaughter.  Why on earth did they breed them again, only to send them & their unborn to slaughter? I will never comprehend some ppls stupdity. I am at a total loss, at how some ppls minds work.

    • FE Davidson

      Gail, Ray, et al.,  as of this time there are 362 posts and I’ve read all of them.  Not only is there a wide range of emotion exhibited (well justified), there are some very good points made with regard to the fixes to the deplorable conduct.  Perhaps it may be worthwhile for Ray and his crew to come up with a digest of the suggestions and use that as a stepping stone for further action.  At the very least, it may provide an opportunity for those in a quandry as to how to handle such a situation.  The input of the scores of posters on this site appears to be superior to the substance of what the industry groups generate.

      Great job Ray at providing the forum and a focus on the issues.

  • Gail Vacca

    This type of dispicable behavior comes as no surprise whatsoever to those of us in the trenches who pull thoroughbreds out of kill pens on a nearly daily basis. Big name breeders are no different than your average run of the mill backyard breeder. Its all about the money and sadly, not many in this industry are inclined to do right by their horses when they no longer have use for them.

    The Assmussen’s should be banned from further registering any foals unless and until they provide proof that they have implemented a better solution for humanely managing their unwanted breeding stock. That goes for EVERYONE involved in the breeding end of the industry.  The sad reality is that while these particular mares were spared a grisly death in a slaughter plant, countless numbers of innocent broodmares are not so lucky. Positively disgraceful.   

  • Nancy

    This is case is a good reminder that older broodmares are probably the most vulnerable to ending up on feedlots. If they’ve been off-track for awhile, or never raced, there is no way to keep tabs on them — and far too few breeding farms will go to the trouble of looking for alternative careers or new homes for their unproductive mares. I don’t know the full extent of the Asmussens’ culpability here. I *do* know that there are several fine TB rescue/adoption programs in Texas that would have been happy to help — if only asked.

    • May Flower

      They just got caught this time.

    • NorthStar326

      Old broodmares and crippled geldings are the most at risk (of the TB).  But in this economy…no one is really safe. 

  • Nancy

    This is case is a good reminder that older broodmares are probably the most vulnerable to ending up on feedlots. If they’ve been off-track for awhile, or never raced, there is no way to keep tabs on them — and far too few breeding farms will go to the trouble of looking for alternative careers or new homes for their unproductive mares. I don’t know the full extent of the Asmussens’ culpability here. I *do* know that there are several fine TB rescue/adoption programs in Texas that would have been happy to help — if only asked.

  • Otis

    Exactly what I was thinking. Plus, it sounds as if some of the mares had foals at foot. Cannot wait to hear the rest of the story. Thoroughly disgusted.

  • Lisa Wintermote

    Bless you for what u do! That being said, please don’t paint all breeders with the same brush. Some of the big name breeders get it right. Jen at 3 Chimneys is amazing, the Stronachs have arguably the best program out there with their own retirement and adoption program and facilities in both Fl and Canada. Whether big or small, the responsibility lies with the breeder and unfortunately some will only do the right thing if they’re shamed into it! Thank you Ray for not flinching from this unpleasant side of the industry!

  • Acdc

    Not that I condone this, and I dont, but I think the most important sentence here is  ”MAY have been responsible”, not are responsible.  Im not saying they didnt, the evidence seems to indicate so, but still, it hasnt been proven so yet.  Typical journalistic reporting, jump before anyone else does.

    • Guest

       Read  !  Ray said calls to the Asmussen’s went unanswered.  They had their chance to give their side of the story.

      • Takesq

        Thanks for reporting this…..I hate these people. There must be a special place in he’ll for them. They do not even call you back. That shows me they know they are horrible despicable people.

    • TBLynn

      I live in Austin, Texas. I have been to the Round Mountain Auction on several occasions and purchased dumped Off the Track Thoroughbreds that were destined for slaughter. Each time I bid against the kill buyer because none of the cowboys want the TB’s for ranch horses. When he sees me bidding he stops bidding. Riding horses I save for around $200.

      2 out of the 3 times I have been at this auction there were Asmussen horses being run through the auction with their hired “cowgirls” riding the horses through the ring. These were Thoroughbreds. Each time they went to a private home or I would have bid on them. These mares were run through the auction as loose horses. Loose horses have NO CHANCE at this auction. Typically they sell to kill for $50-$100 bucks. FYI…The kill buyer (only one comes to this auction now) is the Auctioneer’s Dad. Obviously they ran the bidding up on this Deb Jones. I could have bought these mares for the concerned party for $450-$1000. Glad they got saved. Most broodmares don’t.

      • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

        It is safe to say that the older horses in this case would not have went to private homes and I can’t imagine that they would not have realized that as well. 

        • TBLynn

           Only one of the 10 went to a private home. If more private parties would have been interested they would have bought them. These 9 would have most definitely gone to slaughter. I’ve seen great riding horses bought at this auction for kill.

          • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

            not only is it wrong but a waste of healthy good horses 

    • Rosiepaint

      It seems to me if they came on Asmussen trailers with Asmussen people bringing them and their papers show Asmussen’s as the owners they’re more than likely responsible for the mares being at Round Mountain.

      • TBLynn

         The horses always arrive in Asmussen trailers.

  • Acdc

    Not that I condone this, and I dont, but I think the most important sentence here is  ”MAY have been responsible”, not are responsible.  Im not saying they didnt, the evidence seems to indicate so, but still, it hasnt been proven so yet.  Typical journalistic reporting, jump before anyone else does.

  • Rosiepaint

    Thank you Ray for not being afraid to tell it like it is!
    If anyone wants to help please visit the Remember Me Rescue site and donate – it takes money to feed & vet these horses and RMR is stretched thin right now!

  • Rosiepaint

    Thank you Ray for not being afraid to tell it like it is!
    If anyone wants to help please visit the Remember Me Rescue site and donate – it takes money to feed & vet these horses and RMR is stretched thin right now!

  • http://twitter.com/CathyAtkinson1 Cathy Atkinson

     Major kudos to Ray for spreading the word. I am just sick of this.  These people are not in dire straits financially.  They absolutely have the know-how and facilities to retrain their barren mares for riding homes and resell them that way.  Heck, most of these weren’t even barren.  WTF?

  • portia

    They probably didn’t the stallions this year, but their names on the reports of mares bred will boost the stallions credibility.

  • Anifran9

    They are livestock, and I agree with their right to do this, but, simply from an industry contribution potential, integrity in regard to being concerned about the outcome for the animals, (we all know they are going to suffer horrible if transported to MX, both during the journey and at the destination), standpoint, I don’t understand it, at all, unless they were going to call them a total loss and use them as tax write offs.  They obviously weren’t going to profit from this decision.  Why not donate them to a university or rehoming program, though?  I now have absolutely no respect for these people.  They just joined Doug O’Neill in my opinion file.

    • NorthStar326

      Donating to a university is just as bad as slaughter, only deferred.  That is where they end up eventually and being used as a guinea pig for research, is hardly a humane reward for their service to humans.

      BTW a “right” does not make for it being “right”. Rights given by man always have an ulterior motive.

  • Anifran9

    They are livestock, and I agree with their right to do this, but, simply from an industry contribution potential, integrity in regard to being concerned about the outcome for the animals, (we all know they are going to suffer horrible if transported to MX, both during the journey and at the destination), standpoint, I don’t understand it, at all, unless they were going to call them a total loss and use them as tax write offs.  They obviously weren’t going to profit from this decision.  Why not donate them to a university or rehoming program, though?  I now have absolutely no respect for these people.  They just joined Doug O’Neill in my opinion file.

  • Gail Vacca

    Lisa..it is agreed that there are some who are doing a wonderful job in providing for horses that are no longer productive, but sadly, they are too far and few between. Every day of the year these poor horses are being dumped at kill pens and for each horse lucky enough to be rescued, dozens more are slaughtered. These horses come from every nook and cranny of the US including some of our so-called finest breeding farms. My group rescued a pregnant mare from an auction kill pen a couple years back… the foal, now a two-year old is by current leading freshman sire Magna Graduate. He has his own website – http://www.magnafortuna.weebly.com Just goes to show that despite the outcry for change in this industry, the horses continue to suffer each and every day that these changes are denied:(    

  • Gail Vacca

    Ditto! Thank you for all you do, Ray!

  • Beach Bum

     I realize that there are situations where “what they look like” are not necessarily “what they are”.  Bottom line here is that these mares, possibly in foal, were found at this auction.  I believe “why” is a valid question. 

    What bothers me most is that people that seem to have means sometimes are amongst those that DON’T EVEN TRY; ie, were any of the equine rescues in TX contacted before these mares ended up at the auction?  Correct me if I’m wrong, but it doesn’t look like it… :-(

  • KJones

    IF as a last result destruction is the option, why not humanely do so? The inhumanity of a slaughterhouse which makes the horse die in fear is not only inhumane but immoral. Shame on these people for their handling of animals that have afforded them quite a nice lifestyle. 
    Kudos for Mr. Murrell and other rescuers. 

    • May Flower

      Maybe they just didn’t want to kill viable mares themselves just because they were of no use to them and wanted others to do the dirty work except that their cruel method of disposal was exposed this time, creating quite a PR nightmare for them.

  • Lisa Wintermote

    I would bet that most or all of these mares did not get in foal. That makes her a liability as she still has to be fed, wormed, vaccinated, shod, etc and there will be no foal in the spring to sell. Also, if she’s barren due to age, infection, cysts, etc. it may be more difficult and expensive to get her in foal next year.

  • KJones

    IF as a last result destruction is the option, why not humanely do so? The inhumanity of a slaughterhouse which makes the horse die in fear is not only inhumane but immoral. Shame on these people for their handling of animals that have afforded them quite a nice lifestyle. 
    Kudos for Mr. Murrell and other rescuers. 

  • Victoria Jensen

    Gail, great story about Taxi. Tx for posting the website. 

  • Melissaswaringen

    Thank God someone stepped up to save these mares. It’s to much about dumping horses if they can’t make money anymore or they age. With the cost of hay and feed increasing 100% or more horses are being neglected and dumped at record numbers with no end in sight. Fires, drought,and feed cost. Don’t breed unless you can foot the bills
    and hold on till horses can be sold to good homes. I quit breeding5 years ago and got rid of most my herd to good homes at a loss. Unfortunately these mares are not alone they just got lucky. Our horses count on us to be responsible owners. So think and have a plan before breeding.

  • Melissaswaringen

    Thank God someone stepped up to save these mares. It’s to much about dumping horses if they can’t make money anymore or they age. With the cost of hay and feed increasing 100% or more horses are being neglected and dumped at record numbers with no end in sight. Fires, drought,and feed cost. Don’t breed unless you can foot the bills
    and hold on till horses can be sold to good homes. I quit breeding5 years ago and got rid of most my herd to good homes at a loss. Unfortunately these mares are not alone they just got lucky. Our horses count on us to be responsible owners. So think and have a plan before breeding.

  • Guest

     Read  !  Ray said calls to the Asmussen’s went unanswered.  They had their chance to give their side of the story.

  • Beach Bum

    It is true that I have never experienced the absolute seduction of living in extreme wealth.  More so, my spouse and I raise multiple kids(not counting the 8/9 rescued pets), 2 of those with special needs, on something of a shoestring budget, and my accounting looks a lot more like squeezing blood out of a stone than abundance.  But sometimes there is more usable money out there than people think.  E.g., if Game On Dude got a $10,000 travel allowance for the BC Classic when he(I believe) is already stabled at Santa Anita(or near it), then why not donate some or all of that $$ to equine rescue?  It’s amazing what you can find or do when you put your mind to it… 

  • Beach Bum

    It is true that I have never experienced the absolute seduction of living in extreme wealth.  More so, my spouse and I raise multiple kids(not counting the 8/9 rescued pets), 2 of those with special needs, on something of a shoestring budget, and my accounting looks a lot more like squeezing blood out of a stone than abundance.  But sometimes there is more usable money out there than people think.  E.g., if Game On Dude got a $10,000 travel allowance for the BC Classic when he(I believe) is already stabled at Santa Anita(or near it), then why not donate some or all of that $$ to equine rescue?  It’s amazing what you can find or do when you put your mind to it… 

  • MakeAMark

    I am only on the fringe of the horse industry, so can someone explain why the mares would be bred & then sold at auction? 
    Is this similar to the cattle industry, where you do this to make them weigh more, so they’ll bring more money? 
    Also, I am not asking this to bring the ire of a thousand people, I am asking what I think is a legitimate question:  Horses are livestock and doesn’t the owner have the right to take his livestock to auction? 
    Some comments asked about bringing charges or fines…so many are saying it’s a despicable act.  I get the fact that horses are beautiful animals and we should respect them and love them as much as possible.  But I am a bit confused as to why this one particular horse ranch is being featured as if he’s done something horribly wrong.
    Like I said, I’m only on the fringe of the business, so I DO NOT know much, and I am just looking for someone to explain it to me in decent terms, don’t tear me to shreds please, since I am admittedly not up on things. 
    Thank you. 

    • Jazzman1

      This is an auction where it is common knowledge that “killer buyers” are present and purchase horses for the slaughter houses.  The humane method to dispose of a horse is to have a veternarian come out and put the horse down in familiar surroundings.  We owe them that much at the very least.  There are many rescues, retraining facilities, places willing to take the horses.  This is what a responsible owner does.

    • Anifran9

       It stated in the opening comment that it is not illegal.  At a personal level, I support bringing slaughter back to the U.S. because, whatever the views of animal rights extremists, or even supporters, we can’t control the quality of the killing methods when it’s taking place in Mexico and Canada, both of which have shown themselves highly inhumane in their killing methods, even deliberately cruel and dysfunctional about it. 

      That being the personal opinion, as a livestock animal, horses need to be culled for quality and supply/demand.  These horses were not the quality that should routinely be destined for slaughter, IMO.  But, that, again, is the right and choice of the livestock owners.  As for breeding them and still sending them, it costs them nothing to breed them to the stallions they are standing on their own farm, so there is really no loss, there, from a financial point of view.  It was a decision they made in regard to the individuals, and probably had much to do with their personal and produce records, as well.

      • NorthStar326

        Then set up humane euthanization centers, where you can control the quality of “killing”.  Killing horses (at slaughter) in this country, after all their service to man and society has zero place.  The more we act as if it is a necessity, the more we are becoming like Rome burning.

      • Joe S.

        And what makes you think this country would do a better or more humane job of slaughtering horses. there are cases of extreme cruelty in the existing slaughter houses here and you should know that. Plus there is a huge lack of oversight because of understaffing and funding of the USDA.
        Slaughter and slaughter houses by their very nature are not humane and can never be and that’s the real world. Sorry to burst your bubble! Humane slaughter is just a feel good term.

  • MakeAMark

    I am only on the fringe of the horse industry, so can someone explain why the mares would be bred & then sold at auction? 
    Is this similar to the cattle industry, where you do this to make them weigh more, so they’ll bring more money? 
    Also, I am not asking this to bring the ire of a thousand people, I am asking what I think is a legitimate question:  Horses are livestock and doesn’t the owner have the right to take his livestock to auction? 
    Some comments asked about bringing charges or fines…so many are saying it’s a despicable act.  I get the fact that horses are beautiful animals and we should respect them and love them as much as possible.  But I am a bit confused as to why this one particular horse ranch is being featured as if he’s done something horribly wrong.
    Like I said, I’m only on the fringe of the business, so I DO NOT know much, and I am just looking for someone to explain it to me in decent terms, don’t tear me to shreds please, since I am admittedly not up on things. 
    Thank you. 

  • TBLynn

    I live in Austin, Texas. I have been to the Round Mountain Auction on several occasions and purchased dumped Off the Track Thoroughbreds that were destined for slaughter. Each time I bid against the kill buyer because none of the cowboys want the TB’s for ranch horses. When he sees me bidding he stops bidding. Riding horses I save for around $200.

    2 out of the 3 times I have been at this auction there were Asmussen horses being run through the auction with their hired “cowgirls” riding the horses through the ring. These were Thoroughbreds. Each time they went to a private home or I would have bid on them. These mares were run through the auction as loose horses. Loose horses have NO CHANCE at this auction. Typically they sell to kill for $50-$100 bucks. FYI…The kill buyer (only one comes to this auction now) is the Auctioneer’s Dad. Obviously they ran the bidding up on this Deb Jones. I could have bought these mares for the concerned party for $450-$1000. Glad they got saved. Most broodmares don’t.

  • desertrailrat

    I wish this was an isolated incident…but we all know its not.  Sickening

    Thank you Ray

    God bless the Keen’s

    And to hell with the Asmussen’s. 

  • desertrailrat

    I wish this was an isolated incident…but we all know its not.  Sickening

    Thank you Ray

    God bless the Keen’s

    And to hell with the Asmussen’s. 

  • smitty

    The Asmussens have made plenty of money in this business over the years,by many methods.So fine if you need to dispose of these horses,show a little class and have your vet humanely destroy them.Dont show your lack thereof for the sake of a few dollars.They have always run their business like a factory so I suppose thats all they know.Sad.

    • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

      some of the horses were younger and could easily have been put into second careers. The older ones .. try to find a place for them but you are right, slaughter should never ever be an option… EUTHANIZE your horses, you owe them that much! I agree very sad!

  • smitty

    The Asmussens have made plenty of money in this business over the years,by many methods.So fine if you need to dispose of these horses,show a little class and have your vet humanely destroy them.Dont show your lack thereof for the sake of a few dollars.They have always run their business like a factory so I suppose thats all they know.Sad.

  • Jazzman1

    This is probably not the first time the Asmussens’ have dumped their horses like “yesterday’s garbage”.  This is just the time that they got caught.  If you would like to know where they are today – they are at a horse sale, buying more horses!!!???  They should be banned from racing and owning horses.  The racing industry needs to step up and put an end to this irresponsible ownership and “dumping” of horses.  The racing industry must let it be known that sending horses to slaughter will not be tolerated – zero tolerance.  Horse slaughter is nothing more than a convenient way to dispose of horses when they are no longer profitable to these low lifes!  A man is judged by the way he treats his animals.  Judgement day has come for the Asmussens.  The racing industry is also being judged by the racing fans, and the verdict will most assuredly be the downfall of the racing industry.

    • Beach Bum

       I love to watch thoroughbreds run.  If I ever get to betting, and win anything, I’m giving it all to equine rescue.  This stuff is ridiculous… 

  • Jazzman1

    This is probably not the first time the Asmussens’ have dumped their horses like “yesterday’s garbage”.  This is just the time that they got caught.  If you would like to know where they are today – they are at a horse sale, buying more horses!!!???  They should be banned from racing and owning horses.  The racing industry needs to step up and put an end to this irresponsible ownership and “dumping” of horses.  The racing industry must let it be known that sending horses to slaughter will not be tolerated – zero tolerance.  Horse slaughter is nothing more than a convenient way to dispose of horses when they are no longer profitable to these low lifes!  A man is judged by the way he treats his animals.  Judgement day has come for the Asmussens.  The racing industry is also being judged by the racing fans, and the verdict will most assuredly be the downfall of the racing industry.

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    People have been saying for years that Steve Asmussen had been seen in auctions himself at times, even with his children there. Of course we were always told that he did indeed go to the auctions but he made sure his horses were going to good private homes. That is a laugh! Well now here is the proof. I remember years ago when Alex Brown who was an exercise rider for Steve would ban people from his forum when they would mention this situation to be true. A horse should not have to come this close to death for people to wake up and start doing what is right. The pressure should be on the industry to start finding a solution BEFORE it gets to this point. 

    • TBLynn

       These mares were from the breeding farm owned by Keith and Marilyn Asmussen..not the racing stables of Steve Asmussen. They may be related, but I wouldn’t say this is proof that Steve sends his horses to auction too. I have never seen any horses owned or trained by him at this auction.

      • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

        I hope you are right but that is not what has been rumored for years now.. rumors tend to be just that but when it is said enough, there is generally some truth in it. 

      • Been There

        Steve Asmussen is the trainer of record on Rhododendron. Nelson Bunker Hunt surly did not send this horse to Laredo with the intentions of her ending up at auction. Steve’s layups regularly go to his family farm, many are horses that never make it back to the races. Where do you think they go? 

        • TBLynn

           I don’t make assumptions like apparently some people do so I can’t answer your question on where Steve’s horses go after racing. I state facts on what I see first hand at the Round Mountain auction. I personally have not run across a horse trained or owned by Steve at this auction. I have saved TB’s from this auction that were dumped by other Texas owners and trainers…they did get a call from me after the horse was safely in our barn. Trust me…I am not sticking up for any of the Asmussen’s. This story does not surprise me one bit.

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    People have been saying for years that Steve Asmussen had been seen in auctions himself at times, even with his children there. Of course we were always told that he did indeed go to the auctions but he made sure his horses were going to good private homes. That is a laugh! Well now here is the proof. I remember years ago when Alex Brown who was an exercise rider for Steve would ban people from his forum when they would mention this situation to be true. A horse should not have to come this close to death for people to wake up and start doing what is right. The pressure should be on the industry to start finding a solution BEFORE it gets to this point. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    Gail.. thank you for all you do.. and I know you are right when you say that they are found almost DAILY… The industry needs to step up.. it is TIME NOW! 

  • Rosiepaint

    It seems to me if they came on Asmussen trailers with Asmussen people bringing them and their papers show Asmussen’s as the owners they’re more than likely responsible for the mares being at Round Mountain.

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    some of the horses were younger and could easily have been put into second careers. The older ones .. try to find a place for them but you are right, slaughter should never ever be an option… EUTHANIZE your horses, you owe them that much! I agree very sad!

  • TBLynn

     The horses always arrive in Asmussen trailers.

  • Jazzman1

    This is an auction where it is common knowledge that “killer buyers” are present and purchase horses for the slaughter houses.  The humane method to dispose of a horse is to have a veternarian come out and put the horse down in familiar surroundings.  We owe them that much at the very least.  There are many rescues, retraining facilities, places willing to take the horses.  This is what a responsible owner does.

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    It is safe to say that the older horses in this case would not have went to private homes and I can’t imagine that they would not have realized that as well. 

  • Badlands Pete

    Thank you, Ray. Takes guts and thank you for it. Wonder how many more the Asmussens have dumped. Disgusting.

  • yes dear

    It does nothing to boost the stallions anything if they don’t get in foal and or make it to the track….and then they still have to perform. A stallion with no prodgeny is just another stallion!

  • Badlands Pete

    Thank you, Ray. Takes guts and thank you for it. Wonder how many more the Asmussens have dumped. Disgusting.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ziggy.pop.37 Ziggy Pop

    And double shame on them as these mares are in foal!!!

  • Steve M

    Thanks Ray. Tough issue that has deep roots.

    Slaughter and abandonment is nothing new and just not racing. But with technology we get to see so much more of what’s going on.

    Years ago there was the story of
    grade winner Banker’s Jet. A poster child for what can happen to many
    racehorses when their careers are over. That horse got me thinking.

    There’s also the heart wrenching stories of the poor premature foals of nurse mares which are often abandoned.

    But, there is a bright side of human nature. In the past year I’ve witnessed the hard work of dedicated horse people who save orphaned foals and racehorses.  Check out the Last Chance Corral website. Victoria saved 109 foals this year and does so on 2.6 acres. A horse angel.

    Two more examples; this year a dedicated charity rescued a US Army caisson horse from a killl pen! A retired Army veteran with a US brand on his left shoulder, heading to Mexico (on a one way ticket) as his pension. Yet another friend rescued a gray horse a few years ago from a kill pen. It turns out the horse had earned an Olympic Medal. One cold night he couldn’t get up and found his peaceful end in a warm bedded stall on an Ohio farm surrounded by his adopted family.

    Here in the Midwest see Last Chance Corral, New Vocations, and Friends of Ferdinand. Dedicated people trying to make a difference. They need our help. Thank you.

    • Linda Dougherty

      Steve, I was the one who wrote that story of Banker’s Jet back when I worked for DRF in the early 1990′s. It was assigned to me by then-DRF editor Greg Gallo, and it really generated a huge response when it hit newsstands. I have a laminated copy of it, and the headline was terrific: “Left for dead, Banker’s Jet travels to hell and back.”

      • Steve M

        Thanks Linda. That piece was great. It probably kick started widespread awareness of this issue…at least it did for me. Great work.

      • May Flower

        Could you post a link to that story? Thanks!

        • Linda Dougherty

          May Flower, I wrote this back before the advent of the Internet, so I would have to scan it in, and since the DRF was a broadsheet at the time, I’m not sure how it would turn out.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ziggy.pop.37 Ziggy Pop

    You would not believe how awful owners can be. There is a guy from Canada, (with horses at Saratoga) that sent a mare (8 years old I think) to slaughter after she didn’t take and her foal died. Not one, but two people stepped forward to buy her, for more than killer price, and the owner would NOT sell her, and sent her to slaughter. The mare was dead within 48 hours. Despicable.

  • Steve M

    Thanks Ray. Tough issue that has deep roots.

    Slaughter and abandonment is nothing new and just not racing. But with technology we get to see so much more of what’s going on.

    Years ago there was the story of
    grade winner Banker’s Jet. A poster child for what can happen to many
    racehorses when their careers are over. That horse got me thinking.

    There’s also the heart wrenching stories of the poor premature foals of nurse mares which are often abandoned.

    But, there is a bright side of human nature. In the past year I’ve witnessed the hard work of dedicated horse people who save orphaned foals and racehorses.  Check out the Last Chance Corral website. Victoria saved 109 foals this year and does so on 2.6 acres. A horse angel.

    Two more examples; this year a dedicated charity rescued a US Army caisson horse from a killl pen! A retired Army veteran with a US brand on his left shoulder, heading to Mexico (on a one way ticket) as his pension. Yet another friend rescued a gray horse a few years ago from a kill pen. It turns out the horse had earned an Olympic Medal. One cold night he couldn’t get up and found his peaceful end in a warm bedded stall on an Ohio farm surrounded by his adopted family.

    Here in the Midwest see Last Chance Corral, New Vocations, and Friends of Ferdinand. Dedicated people trying to make a difference. They need our help. Thank you.

  • http://www.facebook.com/ziggy.pop.37 Ziggy Pop

    It doesn’t matter. If one cannot afford the care, they have no business owning the horses to begin with.

  • Linda Dougherty

    There is no one who works as tirelessly and selflessly to help rescue horses like Deborah Jones. She is my hero!

  • Linda Dougherty

    There is no one who works as tirelessly and selflessly to help rescue horses like Deborah Jones. She is my hero!

  • Takesq

    Thanks for reporting this…..I hate these people. There must be a special place in he’ll for them. They do not even call you back. That shows me they know they are horrible despicable people.

  • TBLynn

     Only one of the 10 went to a private home. If more private parties would have been interested they would have bought them. These 9 would have most definitely gone to slaughter. I’ve seen great riding horses bought at this auction for kill.

  • Big Bux Bill

    Paragallo or Asmussens… who is worse?

    • Chris Lowe

      Take your pick…

  • Big Bux Bill

    Paragallo or Asmussens… who is worse?

  • TBLynn

     These mares were from the breeding farm owned by Keith and Marilyn Asmussen..not the racing stables of Steve Asmussen. They may be related, but I wouldn’t say this is proof that Steve sends his horses to auction too. I have never seen any horses owned or trained by him at this auction.

  • Sevencentsstable

    It is actually the owners who bear the responsibility for what happens to their horses. In this case owners are breeders, so there you have it. But I see no reason why the first owner of a horse bears any more responsibility for it than the last owner or the 2nd owner, or the 3rd owner… I believe the last owner of the horse bears the brunt of the responsibility for where they send it!

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    not only is it wrong but a waste of healthy good horses 

  • Livelybarb

    And your point is?

  • Sevencentsstable

    Agreed. I doubt any of them are pregnant. Bet the Assmussens are wishing they had explored other avenues (AS THEY SHOULD HAVE, really)!

  • Bob

    Whoa, how about some evidence that these horses were 1. sent to the sale for the purpose of slaughter and 2.Were destined for slaughter when bid on by the resuce folks? This report is heavy on the innudendo and light on evidence. We need more facts and less knee jerk reaction.

    • Jazzman1

      It was a well known slaughter auction.

    • Guest

      This particular auction has very few private buyers.  The majority of regular buyers at this auction are kill buyers that  fill their trailers and ship directly to Mexico.  Even the owner of this auction ships loads to Mexico.  Sadly, this is the way of most horse/livestock auctions here in Texas.   

    • Anita Xanax

      Hey Bob, what else we’re they for when you run ten mares through the ring loose? Ready made broodmare band? I don’t think so. Man I’d give a whole lot for a daughter of The King…

    • Joe S.

      Where do you think all the horses sent to Canada and Mexico for slaughter come from ? These mares were sent to the sale to take their chances. The chance of  slaughter is much higher than the chance of a new home at such sales and especially for the 20 yr olds. And that is the real world for such horses and you should know that or do you need to see them hanging from the hook ?
       

  • Bob

    Whoa, how about some evidence that these horses were 1. sent to the sale for the purpose of slaughter and 2.Were destined for slaughter when bid on by the resuce folks? This report is heavy on the innudendo and light on evidence. We need more facts and less knee jerk reaction.

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    I hope you are right but that is not what has been rumored for years now.. rumors tend to be just that but when it is said enough, there is generally some truth in it. 

  • Linda Dougherty

    Steve, I was the one who wrote that story of Banker’s Jet back when I worked for DRF in the early 1990′s. It was assigned to me by then-DRF editor Greg Gallo, and it really generated a huge response when it hit newsstands. I have a laminated copy of it, and the headline was terrific: “Left for dead, Banker’s Jet travels to hell and back.”

  • Chris Lowe

    Take your pick…

  • Been There

    Steve Asmussen is the trainer of record on Rhododendron. Nelson Bunker Hunt surly did not send this horse to Laredo with the intentions of her ending up at auction. Steve’s layups regularly go to his family farm, many are horses that never make it back to the races. Where do you think they go? 

  • Nicole

    There is something illegal about it, the racing community will ban them from racing when you send them the tattoos and ownership is established. 

    • Deb Jones

      I wish you were right on that but unfortunately that is not so.

    • Wingtips

      That is what they want people to believe. 

    • NorthStar326

      Not banned.  Just no stalls issued and “no slaughter policy tracks”.

  • Nicole

    There is something illegal about it, the racing community will ban them from racing when you send them the tattoos and ownership is established. 

  • Anifran9

     It stated in the opening comment that it is not illegal.  At a personal level, I support bringing slaughter back to the U.S. because, whatever the views of animal rights extremists, or even supporters, we can’t control the quality of the killing methods when it’s taking place in Mexico and Canada, both of which have shown themselves highly inhumane in their killing methods, even deliberately cruel and dysfunctional about it. 

    That being the personal opinion, as a livestock animal, horses need to be culled for quality and supply/demand.  These horses were not the quality that should routinely be destined for slaughter, IMO.  But, that, again, is the right and choice of the livestock owners.  As for breeding them and still sending them, it costs them nothing to breed them to the stallions they are standing on their own farm, so there is really no loss, there, from a financial point of view.  It was a decision they made in regard to the individuals, and probably had much to do with their personal and produce records, as well.

  • KLH

    So disappointing.  I am surrounded by people with lots of disposable income that love sports and animals, but actions like this make it so hard to sell people on the idea of getting involved.  Horrible behavior, and terrible PR for an industry with such a need for new owners.  Very short-sighted.

    • NorthStar326

      Honorable people should not be hesitant to get involved.  In fact, the horses need such people for all of this to stop.

  • KLH

    So disappointing.  I am surrounded by people with lots of disposable income that love sports and animals, but actions like this make it so hard to sell people on the idea of getting involved.  Horrible behavior, and terrible PR for an industry with such a need for new owners.  Very short-sighted.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/LTUX7NMZ2YSUORUV6IIBFSOYJM hadrian

    Princess Tiffany was a 12yo broodmare. On the track she ran 22 times, winning 6. After her career was over she became broodmare. According to reports, she lost her last foal. Despite the best efforts of her breeder, and others, to buy her back from her current owner, he refused, and sent her to slaughter. She was killed in a Canadian slaughterhouse on April 26. 

  • Mary2

    Ziggy – the name of the owner you speak of needs to be stated, and the owner contacted for a reason this was done.  Also, the names of the two people who stepped up and thier statements.  That is how change is made.  Your statement here does nothing to help change the anything.  All of us have to stop avoiding giving names.  Kudos to Paulick Report for covering the current instance in detail.

  • Matt M

    sad news.. another black eye yet again on the sport as a whole.

  • Matt M

    sad news.. another black eye yet again on the sport as a whole.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kellysteve.wheeler KellySteve Wheeler

    Does anybody know how  we can find these mares now?  My wife and I have three rescued mares that we’ve taken to the breeding shed this year.  How do we find these mares?  There is one in particular we would like to give a new home…

    • Rosiepaint

      You can contact Remember Me Rescue in Burleson, Texas (www.teamkeen.com).

    • NorthStar326

      If they are with a rescue, as they should be, generally the policy is only to adopt out to NON-BREEDING homes.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kellysteve.wheeler KellySteve Wheeler

    Does anybody know how  we can find these mares now?  My wife and I have three rescued mares that we’ve taken to the breeding shed this year.  How do we find these mares?  There is one in particular we would like to give a new home…

  • http://www.facebook.com/kellysteve.wheeler KellySteve Wheeler

    How can I find out where these horses are now?  My wife and I have three TB mare rescues that we’ve bred to prominent stallions this year.  This is something we beleive in!  How can I find out if and when these mares are going up for adoption?

    • NorthStar326

      And will you take care of the mares you have and their foals if they don’t make you money? 

  • http://www.facebook.com/kellysteve.wheeler KellySteve Wheeler

    How can I find out where these horses are now?  My wife and I have three TB mare rescues that we’ve bred to prominent stallions this year.  This is something we beleive in!  How can I find out if and when these mares are going up for adoption?

  • Steve M

    Thanks Linda. That piece was great. It probably kick started widespread awareness of this issue…at least it did for me. Great work.

  • http://www.facebook.com/UnbridledRacing Unbridled Racing

     It may not be illegal, but it is morally reprehensible. Until the thoroughbred industry is willing to proactively limit stud books and what mares are allowed to be bred overpopulation and this type of behavior will continue. In my opinion, if this is true, these people should not be allowed to participate in the thoroughbred industry. There are other species in this country that are raised for meat and perhaps that type of farming would suit them better. I am glad the horses were rescued. I completely stopped breeding thoroughbreds a few years ago, as I wanted to be part of the solution not continuing to create a problem with overpopulation. Thank you Ray for naming names. I think it is important any time a horse is found in slaughter with thoroughbred connections that every single person connected with that horse be notified to help and the last known owner if that be the one who delivered the horse slaughter their name be made public.

    • NorthStar326

      The only way to limit breeding is to require fees over and above stallion fees (that go to support these horses) AND to have stiff penalties for such irresponsibility.  The racing industry deserves all the bad press they get, in relation to stuff like this! Instead the industry passes out awards for breeders that knowingly breed 30 mares to get one decent runner.

  • http://www.facebook.com/UnbridledRacing Unbridled Racing

     It may not be illegal, but it is morally reprehensible. Until the thoroughbred industry is willing to proactively limit stud books and what mares are allowed to be bred overpopulation and this type of behavior will continue. In my opinion, if this is true, these people should not be allowed to participate in the thoroughbred industry. There are other species in this country that are raised for meat and perhaps that type of farming would suit them better. I am glad the horses were rescued. I completely stopped breeding thoroughbreds a few years ago, as I wanted to be part of the solution not continuing to create a problem with overpopulation. Thank you Ray for naming names. I think it is important any time a horse is found in slaughter with thoroughbred connections that every single person connected with that horse be notified to help and the last known owner if that be the one who delivered the horse slaughter their name be made public.

  • Lecsmag

    I think by sending these mares to this auction they were giving them a chance for another home.  They could of easily saved the time and gas money and just sent them to slaughter in Mexico.  I purchased a lovely broodmare from them years ago at this same auction. 

    • Lisa Wintermote

      I disagree with you. If that were the case, they would’ve set a reserve price on these mares (greater than kill price) to insure they did NOT go to kill.

      • Deb Jones

        I agree. These mares were run through ‘loose’ at the end of the auction. Loose horses are regularly sold to kill buyers at auctions throughout the country.

        • Beach Bum

           Yes, I would imagine there’s a lot less chance of falling through the kill cracks if the rescues or owner/breeders were contacted FIRST. 

      • NorthStar326

        Exactly!  They’ve been around the block a few times!

  • Lecsmag

    I think by sending these mares to this auction they were giving them a chance for another home.  They could of easily saved the time and gas money and just sent them to slaughter in Mexico.  I purchased a lovely broodmare from them years ago at this same auction. 

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/LTUX7NMZ2YSUORUV6IIBFSOYJM hadrian

    Respectfully disagree. One a horse is auctioned, trained, given a name, and races, it ceases to be livestock and becomes an equine athlete. The public is encouraged to follow it’s career as any professional athlete and to support the sport….with its dollars. The horse’s pedigree, racing record, and current status can all be tracked with a client of a computer mouse.  From a public relations standpoint, horse racing cannot continue to treat the horses (and broodmares) with disregard once it is no longer convenient monetarily to do so. Societal values change…it isn’t 1950 anymore and breeders/owners better change as well, or they will condemn their own livelihood. And in no manner, shape or form, was this responsible ownership.

    • Beach Bum

       I’m just a peon but I’d beg people not to overbreed.  And, even whilst I also dislike the “livestock” being treated cruelly, too, when was the last time you watched the cows race and win people millions of dollars?!!  Fully agree… 

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/LTUX7NMZ2YSUORUV6IIBFSOYJM hadrian

    Respectfully disagree. One a horse is auctioned, trained, given a name, and races, it ceases to be livestock and becomes an equine athlete. The public is encouraged to follow it’s career as any professional athlete and to support the sport….with its dollars. The horse’s pedigree, racing record, and current status can all be tracked with a client of a computer mouse.  From a public relations standpoint, horse racing cannot continue to treat the horses (and broodmares) with disregard once it is no longer convenient monetarily to do so. Societal values change…it isn’t 1950 anymore and breeders/owners better change as well, or they will condemn their own livelihood. And in no manner, shape or form, was this responsible ownership.

  • Jazzman1

    It was a well known slaughter auction.

  • TBLynn

     I don’t make assumptions like apparently some people do so I can’t answer your question on where Steve’s horses go after racing. I state facts on what I see first hand at the Round Mountain auction. I personally have not run across a horse trained or owned by Steve at this auction. I have saved TB’s from this auction that were dumped by other Texas owners and trainers…they did get a call from me after the horse was safely in our barn. Trust me…I am not sticking up for any of the Asmussen’s. This story does not surprise me one bit.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/OSKDOWSTCR2WQI3CC2NQRWQ23I Martha

    Why buy  horse from the breeder when you can wait to buy it at slaughter!!! Sounds like Amity Acres in Pa. Old mares or babies send them to slaughter! Here’s an idea, STOP BREEDING!!!! You can’t sell them, yet you breed them and send them to the slaughter house.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/OSKDOWSTCR2WQI3CC2NQRWQ23I Martha

    Why buy  horse from the breeder when you can wait to buy it at slaughter!!! Sounds like Amity Acres in Pa. Old mares or babies send them to slaughter! Here’s an idea, STOP BREEDING!!!! You can’t sell them, yet you breed them and send them to the slaughter house.

  • Rosiepaint

    You can contact Remember Me Rescue in Burleson, Texas (http://www.teamkeen.com).

  • Meyer1127

    Where the foals with them and where they rescued also? If not what has happened to them thru all this?

  • Meyer1127

    Where the foals with them and where they rescued also? If not what has happened to them thru all this?

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000060014659 JoJo Zumwalt

    The Asmussens get my nomination for the Breeder’s Hall of Shame; right up there with Ernie Paragallo. So happy these lovely ladies are safe. What an awesome TB network we have. Many blessings to these girls and all those that stepped up on their behalf.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000060014659 JoJo Zumwalt

    The Asmussens get my nomination for the Breeder’s Hall of Shame; right up there with Ernie Paragallo. So happy these lovely ladies are safe. What an awesome TB network we have. Many blessings to these girls and all those that stepped up on their behalf.

  • Really???

    All of this is too sickening to read.  I can’t get over the Asmussen’s being so awlful.   I wouldn’t let them water my horse much less train them or anything else.    I hope this message gets out there and this stuff stops.

    • Anita Xanax

      PLEASE stop tarring Steve Asmussen with a brush needed for his father!! The RACING Admissions are related in blood only to this Asmussen. Steve had NOTHING to do with this!!

      • Lisa Wintermote

        If u read through everything on here, it looks like Steve was the last trainer of record on Rhododendron and the listed breeder of Luxury of Times baby.

        • Anita Xanax

          Steve had nothing to do with shipping those mares, full stop.

          • Lisa Wintermote

            Anita, I don’t know if Steve did or didn’t but I do believe that he bears full responsibility for the welfare of Luxury of Time as he was using her to produce foals. As the trainer of Rhododendron, he also has a duty to her post racing. The “I didn’t know, it’s not my fault” doesn’t hold water in this industry anymore and thank God for that!

      • Barbara

        The Asmussens are a very tight family;)

  • Really???

    All of this is too sickening to read.  I can’t get over the Asmussen’s being so awlful.   I wouldn’t let them water my horse much less train them or anything else.    I hope this message gets out there and this stuff stops.

  • Bluehen16

    What would you expect from them? Steve has over 20 positive drug tests for doping horses, and of course those are just the times he was caught, who knows if that is normal course of business for him. But as far as the Jockey Club is concerned they could care less. Shame on you Mr. Phipps.

    • NorthStar326

      Bingo!

  • Bluehen16

    What would you expect from them? Steve has over 20 positive drug tests for doping horses, and of course those are just the times he was caught, who knows if that is normal course of business for him. But as far as the Jockey Club is concerned they could care less. Shame on you Mr. Phipps.

  • Kalighiz1

    Ray: Thank you for publicizing this! I firmly believe in the principle of shaming those who deserve it. To those of you who are busy pulling horses from kill shelters, my heart goes out to you. You are my heroes! I support two shelters here in Canada who are busy doing the same work. 

    • Wingtips

      Shame doesn’t matter to sociopaths

      • NorthStar326

        Ah…but it matters to egotists and narcissists.  They often travel disguised as sociopaths.

  • Kalighiz1

    Ray: Thank you for publicizing this! I firmly believe in the principle of shaming those who deserve it. To those of you who are busy pulling horses from kill shelters, my heart goes out to you. You are my heroes! I support two shelters here in Canada who are busy doing the same work. 

  • J. Leonard Neuman

    A Thoroughbred relinquishes his credentials when
    $1,000 won’t purchase him at auction. When his value is determined by the cost
    per pound his situation worsens. When the rescue people are no longer able to
    provide hospice care and a termination of life scenario is a stark reality, what
    then is the next move? What are the expectations demanded in a “politically
    correct” equine world? (All comments are welcome.)

    • Matthew Martini

      The next move is to call the vet and humanely euthanize the horse.

      Most respectfully, I cannot see how the issue has anything to do with political correctness.

      • Beach Bum

         Ditto

      • J. Leonard Neuman

        “Political correctness”
        is a government derived term, spun for the bureaucracy and used for exerting
        control. Nature’s way on the other hand is natural and is ministered
        by a far greater cause. Knowing the distinction,
        where does euthanasia fall?

    • NorthStar326

      When all efforts to find a responsible and humane existence for the horse are exhausted, then it is up to a responsible owner or breeder to have the character, honor and courage to humanely put the horse down.  Not give it away or send it to a well-known kill buyer auction, aka the local low end feed, tack and horse auction.

      And when, pray tell, does an owner, breeder or trainer RELINQUISH his responsibiltiy to be honorable toward innocent creatures he had no problem attempting to use for making money or for social and egotistical gain?

  • J. Leonard Neuman

    A Thoroughbred relinquishes his credentials when
    $1,000 won’t purchase him at auction. When his value is determined by the cost
    per pound his situation worsens. When the rescue people are no longer able to
    provide hospice care and a termination of life scenario is a stark reality, what
    then is the next move? What are the expectations demanded in a “politically
    correct” equine world? (All comments are welcome.)

  • compassionforhorses

    This particular auction has very few private buyers.  The majority of regular buyers at this auction are kill buyers that  fill their trailers and ship directly to Mexico.  Even the owner of this auction ships loads to Mexico.  Sadly, this is the way of most horse/livestock auctions here in Texas.   

  • Dodohuneybelle

    Im not surprised at all. They are greedy trash

  • Dodohuneybelle

    Im not surprised at all. They are greedy trash

  • Wingtips

    Paul Labe Sr recently got caught in PA sending a homebred from track to slaughter.  He was banned from entering his horses, which are homebreds.  Guess what?  They now run under his son, Paul Labe Jr.  Nothing changes, including Sr’s fat PA breeder’s awards.  This is an industry with little shame.  Outing people really doesn’t matter. 

  • JEM

    We just found out about this and our old mare, Luxury of Time on Monday from Three Chimneys Farm.  We have offered through them and Donna to pick up the mare in Texas and bring her to our farm in CA to retire, we have also offered to send tack, blankets and anything to help to Texas if they don’t want us to take her back.  We sold this mare years ago and just devastated of where she ended up. Why nobody called us before sending her to the kill lot is beyond me.  Golden Eagle does everything to be responsible breeders (see our web site under the Sales section, after the track) and have many retired mares and geldings on the farm.  Its sad to me that we are blamed for other irresponsible owners and breeders.  However, we will continue to do the right thing and hope next time, someone calls us first.  http://www.goldeneaglefarm.com/after-the-racetrack/

    • Rosiepaint

      Kudos to Golden Eagle for offering to step up for Luxury of Time. Thank you for being responsible people even though you didn’t make this mess. I wish there were thousands more just like you.

      • JEM

        Thank you so much Rosiepaint!  We get so much joy out of finding our xrace
        horses new homes as show horses or buddies.  The Christmas cards, videos of
        winning at shows and even watching the retired ones outside the farm office
        windows are just as much as a blessing as winning a race.  If you can’t
        breed responsibly you shouldn’t be in this business.  Thanks back to Jen at
        Three Chimneys for calling us and for Donna at the rescue.  Luxury of Time
        always has a home here in CA. 

        • Rosiepaint

          I’ll make it a point to give her some peppermints from her California connections as soon as I see her! It took an entire village to save these girls! May they all have long healthy, much loved lives~

          • JEM

            We would gladly add a Costco bag of Peppermints to the care package we are sending!  Thanks Rosiepaint!

        • Wendy Tulenko

          Absolutely wonderful! I looked her up because I always wanted a Slew mare in my field. Out of a SW/producer and she’s not that old. And she ended up at a kill auction? Had they offered her to me I’d have taken her. So glad she’s going home to you.

    • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

      I know several breeding farms that also do the same.. thank you for doing the right thing, it helps to know that there are many that DO care 

    • Mwimberley279

      I worked with Darling Dame at Three Chimneys in 97-98. Cannot tell you how much I loved that little mare and her Woodman colt. Thank you for stepping up as always and helping Luxury of Time.

    • Beach Bum

      Thank you for this and your actions/attitude, too–if everyone felt like this, the world would be a better horse place… :-)  

      • Beach Bum

         And, even though I am just an outsider looking in and not a part of this business, I’d advise everyone that GIVES A DAMN to do what JEM and(I believe; this is what I’ve heard) the Mosses do and TRACK YOUR HORSES AS BEST YOU CAN…

        On that score, Geefour, Union Rags’ full brother, last raced at Penn National 3 years ago according to Equibase, but other than that I can find no internet trace of him.  If anyone knows what happened to him, I would appreciate knowing.  Big prayers… 

        • Otis

          See the last connections of Geefour who won $132,938.00 for various connections. – Michael Gill and Anthony Adamo! We know that they are not known for their appropriate and responsible retirement of their horses.

    • NorthStar326

      Perhaps you weren’t with Golden Eagle when Post It Note and another crippled stakes winning gelding was pulled from a feedlot and ended up (to this day) supported by a local rescue.   I’ll be glad to get you the info, if you would like.  They were both listed by JC as “died”.

      • JEM

        I was not and cant go back in time to fix that situation, very sorry to hear.  See my posted reply above to Susan Lehr.  Luxury of Time is coming home to us in a few weeks.  Don’t punish the past, bless the future.  

      • Dc

        You people just can’t help your selves can you, you are just so determined to find the worst in racing that even when someone is stepping up to the plate doing something right, you just have to find something wrong, had to dig but you found something and even though it has nothing to do with today you have to get your digs in, you people ARE a big problem for the horses you are just too tunnel visioned to see it, you cause way more harm than good on a regular basis. I give kudos to some of the rescues like Remember Me Rescue, Pure Thoughts, LOPE and a few others but you people need to just donate to them and let them take care of the rest, and stay out of the way.

        • NorthStar326

          Since I spend my days surrounded by horses and the horse industry, I don’t need to look far to find the worst. In fact, it is painfully difficult to hide from it. BTW, I didn’t have to dig…it was something I came across quite by accident, when looking at horses and rescues to donate to. Also…though it is none of your business…my partner and I donate to Remember Me Rescue quite regularly and have for a while. I also hold my tongue much more than I speak because I’m too busy trying to help horses at the track and farms not end up like the horses in this article/thread were inches away from ending up. You know nothing of the rescue world and what those who do go thru daily. You are clearly one of those industry regulars who is quite adept at looking the other way and minding your own business…while a voiceless horse suffers.

          • Roisin

            I agree, one does not have to look far to find the worst. People who complain about those who try to do something about the abuse and neglect of horses ARE a huge part of the proplem, not the other way around. I currently have 7 Thouroughbreds that I have taken under my wing. They came from the claiming game and had nowhere to go.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1075607667 Susan Lehr

      Happy that Golden Eagle has stepped forward to do right by their mare.  As a horse owner myself, I would never, and I emphasize, NEVER sell a horse.  I’ve seen it happen all to often where someone sells their horse to a good home but a few years later, the second owner sells the horse to someone they believe will be a good home and so on until the horse ends up in a slaughter house.  A “Right of First Refusal” clause does nothing if the person in possession of the horse doesn’t follow through.  There was a story a couple years ago about a woman who claimed to run a horse rescue actually trolling the track backside for unwanted horses claiming they would be adopted out to good homes.  In reality, the woman was transporting these horses straight to the killer auction.  She was arrested and convicted.  I’m sure there are others out there doing the same.  Well-meaning people trying to find a good home for a horse in a short amount of time are easily victimized.  Owners need to take the time to investigate all potential buyers AND follow up on the whereabouts of any horses sold. 

      • JEM

        So much to say here, honestly I have sold riding horses and background checked the new buyers and still found out about grim outcomes.  We cant police the human race, sadly.  You say we shouldn’t ever sell, thats impossible and not just for equines.  people die, loose houses and jobs, this is life and reality.  I focus on the good, the amazing stories, phone calls, blue ribbon photos from the little girls and boys who end up with our retired horses and the successful racing stories of horses we sold like Evening Jewel who kept a man alive with cancer a year longer than doctors thought while she won over $1million.  They called me all the time with updates and we sent them baby photos of her and talked all the way through her retirement.  Please don’t condemn everyone for one bad situation that happened here.  Shame on them for not being responsible and making us all look bad.  I have not been with Golden Eagle the entire time they have been breeding but since I have I do my best to do the right thing which is also the wishes of Larry Mabee, the son of John C.  Luxury of Time is coming home in 2 weeks to retire on the farm in CA.  I will not continue to post here as i need to get back to focusing on her coming home, the rest of our horses and employees.  If you wish to follow Luxury’s return you can find Golden Eagle Farm on Facebook.  

  • JEM

    We just found out about this and our old mare, Luxury of Time on Monday from Three Chimneys Farm.  We have offered through them and Donna to pick up the mare in Texas and bring her to our farm in CA to retire, we have also offered to send tack, blankets and anything to help to Texas if they don’t want us to take her back.  We sold this mare years ago and just devastated of where she ended up. Why nobody called us before sending her to the kill lot is beyond me.  Golden Eagle does everything to be responsible breeders (see our web site under the Sales section, after the track) and have many retired mares and geldings on the farm.  Its sad to me that we are blamed for other irresponsible owners and breeders.  However, we will continue to do the right thing and hope next time, someone calls us first.  

  • Rosiepaint

    Kudos to Golden Eagle for offering to step up for Luxury of Time. Thank you for being responsible people even though you didn’t make this mess. I wish there were thousands more just like you.

  • MUSEinIN

    Thank you, Ray, for covering this story!!!

  • MUSEinIN

    Thank you, Ray, for covering this story!!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    I know several breeding farms that also do the same.. thank you for doing the right thing, it helps to know that there are many that DO care 

  • Bluehen16

    Looking at the Jockey Club records, I saw that for these mares all the breeders of record for 2011 and 2012 were Keith Asmussen  or Keith Asmussen and Carol Castile. The exception was the foal from Luxury Of Time who’s breeder of Record is Steve Asmussen. So if they try to say they were not their mares? Not so.

  • Bluehen16

    Looking at the Jockey Club records, I saw that for these mares all the breeders of record for 2011 and 2012 were Keith Asmussen  or Keith Asmussen and Carol Castile. The exception was the foal from Luxury Of Time who’s breeder of Record is Steve Asmussen. So if they try to say they were not their mares? Not so.

  • JEM

    Thank you so much Rosiepaint!  We get so much joy out of finding our xrace
    horses new homes as show horses or buddies.  The Christmas cards, videos of
    winning at shows and even watching the retired ones outside the farm office
    windows are just as much as a blessing as winning a race.  If you can’t
    breed responsibly you shouldn’t be in this business.  Thanks back to Jen at
    Three Chimneys for calling us and for Donna at the rescue.  Luxury of Time
    always has a home here in CA. 

  • Matthew Martini

    The next move is to call the vet and humanely euthanize the horse.

    Most respectfully, I cannot see how the issue has anything to do with political correctness.

  • Clquick1234

    Sad, despicable, inhumane, unconscionable breeders.  The Jockey Club should ban them from future registering of any foals, the Industry should shun them.  

  • Clquick1234

    Sad, despicable, inhumane, unconscionable breeders.  The Jockey Club should ban them from future registering of any foals, the Industry should shun them.  

  • FE Davidson

    My suggestion…..one need only go to Santa Anita and investigate the whereabouts of the hoards of disposable commodities, we refer to as horses, that are the “has-beens” and “rejects” from the largest of training operations.  Based upon information supplied by vets that have signed health certificates prior to their final voyage, it’s not rare for horses to have been shipped to PA for transhipment to the Canadian slaughter houses, or for injured stakes horses to be given to the Mexican cartels for use in match races and “bull-fighting-like” events.

    It’s a sad, sad commentary on how we treat our partners in racing.  The Asmussens and ohers similarly situated, are merely the tip of an ignored and well-hidden iceburg….albeit, not too well hidden this time.

    Gail, kudos for your good work.  I can account for each of the horses I’ve ever had the pleasure of owning, and I can say that none of them has ever gone to slaughter, nor treated with indignity.  Each has been given the opportunity to retire in comfort, as a way of saying thank you for what they have given us during the course of their careers, whether as a racehorse, stallion, broodmare or show horse.  The price?  Incredibly high.  The sacrifices?  Beyond belief.  But even with moderate means, it’s a matter of priority.

    I urge all of the owners reading these posts to pause and ask themselves if they’ve done enough to thank their equine athletes for the sacrifices they’ve had to make at the behest of their human stewards.  Then, after thinking about it, do more!

    • Barbara

      Those former fast stakes horses south of the border are a dirty secret that no one want to report about. 

      • Barbara

        add the word, will.

      • NorthStar326

        I tried to keep 3 beautiful mares from going across the border and I’m sure they all ended up in match races and then to slaughter, when their already crippled legs could not carry them.  The So. Cal farm manager, that was called by Maggi Moss to get the horses back out of the feedlot, DID NOT KEEP HIS WORD MAGGI!  He brought them back to the farm and then gave them away to a groom, who took them to Mexico.  That was after he promised me they would be safe and I had someone local, interested in taking at least one. That’s what all the wealthy, even Eclipse Award winning owners, trainers and breeders do!  Can’t tell you how many horses are listed as died in the JC, that later turn up rescued off a feedlot.  FRAUD at the very least!   I hope every human that ever had anything to do with sending a horse to Mexico or to slaughter, suffers equally in their own lives!

    • NorthStar326

      As a small owner and even smaller breeder that cares for every horse we have…and who visits Santa Anita several times a week…IF there are names of owners, trainers and horses you know of…YOU SHOULD POST THEM.  We are going broke saving other people’s horses (my partner and I) and SILENCE is the greatest curse and killer of these horses!

      • FE Davidson

        Based upon information that has been ascertained, but not independently verified, my opinion is that you should enter the SA backside from the front entrance, stop at the first barn on your left, and begin your investigation there.  That should be a good start.  But don’t expect any assistance from those in authority, as certain locations are considered hallowed ground.

        • NorthStar326

          Gate 7 or 8?

          • FE Davidson

            8.

  • FE Davidson

    My suggestion…..one need only go to Santa Anita and investigate the whereabouts of the hoards of disposable commodities, we refer to as horses, that are the “has-beens” and “rejects” from the largest of training operations.  Based upon information supplied by vets that have signed health certificates prior to their final voyage, it’s not rare for horses to have been shipped to PA for transhipment to the Canadian slaughter houses, or for injured stakes horses to be given to the Mexican cartels for use in match races and “bull-fighting-like” events.

    It’s a sad, sad commentary on how we treat our partners in racing.  The Asmussens and ohers similarly situated, are merely the tip of an ignored and well-hidden iceburg….albeit, not too well hidden this time.

    Gail, kudos for your good work.  I can account for each of the horses I’ve ever had the pleasure of owning, and I can say that none of them has ever gone to slaughter, nor treated with indignity.  Each has been given the opportunity to retire in comfort, as a way of saying thank you for what they have given us during the course of their careers, whether as a racehorse, stallion, broodmare or show horse.  The price?  Incredibly high.  The sacrifices?  Beyond belief.  But even with moderate means, it’s a matter of priority.

    I urge all of the owners reading these posts to pause and ask themselves if they’ve done enough to thank their equine athletes for the sacrifices they’ve had to make at the behest of their human stewards.  Then, after thinking about it, do more!

  • Clearlyambiguous

     i must be missing something.   how are these horses any different than the 100,000 others that are slaughtered every year, and sent to Mexico thanks to the work of folks such as urself / is it because the name Asmussen is attached to them?

  • Shame on these people

    Prominent is the wrong word for this family.

  • Shame on these people

    Prominent is the wrong word for this family.

  • Dawn

    When is this “disposable” mentality going to end?

     
    Dawn Mellen, President/FounderAfter the Finish Line®10153 Riverside Drive, Suite 397
    Toluca Lake, CA 91602
    dawn@afterthefinishline.orgwww.afterthefinishline.org

  • Dawn

    When is this “disposable” mentality going to end?

     
    Dawn Mellen, President/FounderAfter the Finish Line®10153 Riverside Drive, Suite 397
    Toluca Lake, CA 91602
    dawn@afterthefinishline.orgwww.afterthefinishline.org

  • Janice L

    WTF, Asmussens??!!  Take some of the money that these horses earned and find them homes or humanely put them down!!  Shame on all of you!

  • Janice L

    WTF, Asmussens??!!  Take some of the money that these horses earned and find them homes or humanely put them down!!  Shame on all of you!

  • Guest

    I think because the owners had the deep pockets to do right by them, and didn’t. 

  • Lindalu

    And your point would be what exactly?  Are you saying that this is the reason for being sent to slaughter?  There are never good reasons for this. Look at the Chuckwagon industry in Canada – they regularly rescue horses from the slaughter houses for their herds.  There is never a good reason for cruelty and I too would like to hear what their rationale was.

    Thank you for reporting this atrocity.

  • Sandymegahan

    Wow that is trashy behavior and I am so glad the owners were busted in front of the world! God bless the classy people who saved those mares – i love you all! I love Louie On the Lam my OTTT that was given away by his trainer so he could have a wonderful life – God bless you Jesse Maldonado!

  • Sandymegahan

    Wow that is trashy behavior and I am so glad the owners were busted in front of the world! God bless the classy people who saved those mares – i love you all! I love Louie On the Lam my OTTT that was given away by his trainer so he could have a wonderful life – God bless you Jesse Maldonado!

  • melneey

    Sounds to me like they were “culling” their herd, but MY GOD!  Worthless POS, the whole lot of them.

  • Really???

    I never realized how grizzly the scene is  to horses being slaughtered.  Dear God who could be so ruthless.   Hell doesn’t have a deep enough pit for people that condone such behavior.     OMG,   the agonony these beautiful animals go thru while they’re dying and before.   Look it up online and read for yourself this grizzly inhumane end these poor horses that are being sent slaughter go thru on a daily basis.   God have mercy.

  • Really???

    I never realized how grizzly the scene is  to horses being slaughtered.  Dear God who could be so ruthless.   Hell doesn’t have a deep enough pit for people that condone such behavior.     OMG,   the agonony these beautiful animals go thru while they’re dying and before.   Look it up online and read for yourself this grizzly inhumane end these poor horses that are being sent slaughter go thru on a daily basis.   God have mercy.

  • Rosiepaint

    I’ll make it a point to give her some peppermints from her California connections as soon as I see her! It took an entire village to save these girls! May they all have long healthy, much loved lives~

  • warrena

    the A family is an BIG A family

  • warrena

    the A family is an BIG A family

  • Concerned Texan

    Keith Asmussen is a longtime member of the Texas Thoroughbred Association board of directors. In fact, he was on the board when its members voted unanimously in July 2003 to become the first state breeders’ organization to adopt a formal position AGAINST horse slaughter, which they did in response to the report that Kentucky Derby winner Ferdinand had met this fate in Japan. At the time, Texas operated two of the three horse slaughter plants in the U.S.

    Since that time, the two slaughter plants have closed, but the Texas breeding and racing industry has contracted severely. Texas mares, foals, stallions and racehorses have dwindling earnings potential, and even less commercial value, and horsemen continue to leave the state in droves, or close down their farms permanently.

    Sadly, these Asmussen mares are yet another byproduct of the excruciatingly long Texas racing industry death spiral.

  • Concerned Texan

    Keith Asmussen is a longtime member of the Texas Thoroughbred Association board of directors. In fact, he was on the board when its members voted unanimously in July 2003 to become the first state breeders’ organization to adopt a formal position AGAINST horse slaughter, which they did in response to the report that Kentucky Derby winner Ferdinand had met this fate in Japan. At the time, Texas operated two of the three horse slaughter plants in the U.S.

    Since that time, the two slaughter plants have closed, but the Texas breeding and racing industry has contracted severely. Texas mares, foals, stallions and racehorses have dwindling earnings potential, and even less commercial value, and horsemen continue to leave the state in droves, or close down their farms permanently.

    Sadly, these Asmussen mares are yet another byproduct of the excruciatingly long Texas racing industry death spiral.

  • Bevkins77

    Knock em up, write em off, subsidized by our tax dollars and double dip by shipping them off to slaughter. Yep…..up standing individuals that support slaughtering our American horses, so the tax payer can foot the bill, while they line their wallets at the expense of horses blood shed and our wallets. GREED. May your justice be served when you meet your maker for all the cruelty you have bestowed on those who served you well.

    In the mean time how about we prosecute those who act no better than a puppy mill, how about we fine them and slam the gavel down. Get off your duffs Congress & Senate and pass SB1176 & HR2966 and stop rewarding this sick and criminal behavior!

  • May Flower

    Out the SOB!

  • Lisa Wintermote

    I disagree with you. If that were the case, they would’ve set a reserve price on these mares (greater than kill price) to insure they did NOT go to kill.

  • Wingtips

    Maggi Moss- what is your opinion?  You employ Steve- have you spoken to him?  What’s the deal? 

    • maggi moss

      i no longer employ steve;  we parted ways in Jan,    I do not know the facts, but I am not sure one can condone steve for these acts;   I do not know the facts well enough and would like to “think” he believed this was a real auction that did not have kill buyers;    but i simply dont know but am sick about it
      I do know Steves mom is not doing well right now ——-
      the whole industry makes no sense to me anymore -      

      • Wingtips

        10-4, Maggi.  Thanks for the quick response.

      • Mary Overman

         ”the whole industry makes no sense to me anymore”  Feeling the same way.

        • AngelaFromAbilene

          Feeling the same here.

      • Anita Xanax

        Maggi, this was Keith not Steve. The only place his name showed up was as breeder of record for a foal from one of the mares. I’m sorry to hear Mrs. Asmussen isn’t well, prayers for her speedy recovery.

      • Convene

         ”the whole industry makes no sense to me anymore”

        That might be one of the most sensible things I’ve heard in a long time. A lot of it doesn’t make sense to me either! However, in view of the way “throwaway people” seem to be increasing, I suppose we shouldn’t be surprised at throwaway horses. People need to remember we’re not dealing with things; we’re dealing with LIVES. I too would like to think Steve had no part in this; I never thought of him this way.

  • Wingtips

    Maggi Moss- what is your opinion?  You employ Steve- have you spoken to him?  What’s the deal? 

  • Otis

    …and Paul Labe, Sr. Is a double jerk as he owns or used to own the sire of the filly you describe. The Horse of Delaware Valley wrote a sweet “aw shucks” article about him and his operation a few years ago. Wow, these creeps are at every level. It makes one wonder at what point do these people’s psyches not develop properly.

  • May Flower

    3Chimneys and Stronach are exceptions not the rule. How many horses has a single owner/breeder like Ben Warren sent to slaughter? Only he and his enablers and killers know that if anyone has cared to count.

  • May Flower

    And if they don’t have deep pockets they still must do what’s right, including not owning and especially breeding more horses. 

  • Lisa Wintermote

    Pls don’t misunderstand me. I was merely answering the question as to “why”. I do NOT condone the actions of the owners in any way. Nor do I feel those are valid reasons at all. I am the proud owner of an OTQH that I bought out of a kill pen at the age of 6. I went on to outride on this horse at 2 major racetracks and he is now the mascot at one of them. He also accompanied UR to the post in the KY Derby this year. Not bad for a throw-away horse huh?

  • May Flower

    They just got caught this time.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joclaire.corcoran Jo-Claire Corcoran

    They threw away broodmares, several which had just foaled and most were already bred back.  That is an irresponsible breeder.  And coming from a racing stable which claims to be anti-slaughter then it’s twice the insult. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/joclaire.corcoran Jo-Claire Corcoran

    The Assmusens need to step up and cover the full cost and expenses this rescue will encounter. 

  • JEM

    We would gladly add a Costco bag of Peppermints to the care package we are sending!  Thanks Rosiepaint!

  • May Flower

    Maybe they just didn’t want to kill viable mares themselves just because they were of no use to them and wanted others to do the dirty work except that their cruel method of disposal was exposed this time, creating quite a PR nightmare for them.

  • Ann Taylor

    to ZIGGY (and Mary2) — The NAMES make enormous impact — without, you have nothing but a story line.  The power of legit media can truly mean the difference between life and death.

    sidebar:  After Silver Charm’s Preakness win, R.P. stopped by my office with his winning ticket “to donate to the TRF” ….  many racing journalists & media members love the sport, but have passion for the horse. Ray Paulick fits like no other.

  • May Flower

    Could you post a link to that story? Thanks!

  • Linda

    These people should be banned from breeding!!

  • Linda

    These people should be banned from breeding!!

  • Clearlyambiguous

     My understanding is that the horses were put into a sale.  Anybody could have bought them,  including anybody posting here.  Instead what apparently  occurred is  that this lady from  CA likely pouncing on  the opportunity to keep her website jangling had the horses pulled from the sale.  Who knows whether the Asmussens would have bought these  horses back themselves or whether this part of the Asmussen clan has deep pockets.  I agree  to do what’s right by the horse.  However, that is a complex Q.  These horses likely are now on a downward spirtal into the abuse and neglect of OTB.  Maybe sometimes its better to quit interfering with end of life decisions for unwanted animals in the name of “rescue”.   I’ll believe these  horses have been rescued when the rescuer puts up her purse to support them.  Unlikely.

  • maggi moss

    i no longer employ steve;  we parted ways in Jan,    I do not know the facts, but I am not sure one can condone steve for these acts;   I do not know the facts well enough and would like to “think” he believed this was a real auction that did not have kill buyers;    but i simply dont know but am sick about it
    I do know Steves mom is not doing well right now ——-
    the whole industry makes no sense to me anymore -      

  • desertrailrat

     You are absolutely correct, many of the Warren horses have ended up in bad situations, I recall a large group of mares that were rescued a few years ago.  The Warren business model was to home breed tons of horses with cheap pedigrees knowing some would be able to run and make money in purses or through the claim box while the countless others were victims of wastage and ended up in many bad places.  THANK GOD he had decided to mostly quit the breeding business.

  • Steve D

    So I guess I probably shouldnt buy that share in Intimidator!

  • Steve D

    So I guess I probably shouldnt buy that share in Intimidator!

  • Wingtips

    10-4, Maggi.  Thanks for the quick response.

  • Stwiford

    Thank you thank you thank you for saving these horses Mr. Murrell. You deserve all the good things that come your way in life.

  • Stwiford

    Thank you thank you thank you for saving these horses Mr. Murrell. You deserve all the good things that come your way in life.

  • Skip Ean

    Notice that they first produced foals before being discarded like empty tin cans.  Asmussen has been under a cloud of suspicion for years and years regarding drugs and selling to slaughter, and here it is–in black and white.  He should be barred from racing, but the industry will only spank him on his hand with a fly swatter.  Disgusting, and this is only one incident of his dumping horses.  Someone said recently on another blog that there are only two trainers in tb racing who don’t use drugs or send to slaughter.  Asmussen is not one of them, and unfortunately he is one of many.  He’s been exposed now, so what kind of story will he cook up about this to protect his butt–that he didn’t know?  That it’s never happened before?  A few weeks ago, we saw the greatest performance of trainer and owner who were putting on such grief-stricken acts because their champion could not enter the Belmont.  They were so phony–and their phoniness was so easy to see.  Today we get more info on this great horse and know that these two slime guys knew full well about the problems IHA had and had already sold him to Japan for a cool $10 million well before the Belmont.  Can Asmussen beat that phony performance?  What can we do to be sure this guy loses his clients and jumps in a washing machine to get clean?

    • CK70

      You have got to be one of the most ignorant individuals I have ever come across. You want to ban Steve Asmussen from horse racing because his parents took a trailer load of horses to a sale ring?

      First of all, he did not “send his horses to slaughter”. He sent his horses to a sale ring. A LOT of people run their horses through auction rings.

      Why are you people only throwing a fit over this handful? Go protest and belittle every other individual out there who has ever sold a horse for a cheap price because they don’t have a need for them anymore. I am 100% for finding a “good” home for a horse, but in this business, I cannot afford to sit around and wait for that “good” home to appear.

      If you are looking for somebody who is willing to keep every horse that has ever been in their care, well then you are looking into the wrong sport.

      Ban a guy for sending horses to an auction? Please. Absolutely ridiculous.

      • Bluehen16

         Clearly you must not be involved in the Horse racing business to not know the issue with Steve goes far beyond 10 horses being run thru a killers auction.

      • Roseandjoesmith

        Clearly you are part of the problem. Perhaps you should consider another line of “work”

      • Guest

         At some tracks, he would have lost his stalls if his horses were found in the hands of a killer. Pretending you don’t know? EVERYBODY pretends that; it’s like Sandusky pretending he was just roughhousing.

        The public won’t put up with the slaughter of equine athletes forever; look at Greyhound racing in Massachusets.

  • Skip Ean

    Notice that they first produced foals before being discarded like empty tin cans.  Asmussen has been under a cloud of suspicion for years and years regarding drugs and selling to slaughter, and here it is–in black and white.  He should be barred from racing, but the industry will only spank him on his hand with a fly swatter.  Disgusting, and this is only one incident of his dumping horses.  Someone said recently on another blog that there are only two trainers in tb racing who don’t use drugs or send to slaughter.  Asmussen is not one of them, and unfortunately he is one of many.  He’s been exposed now, so what kind of story will he cook up about this to protect his butt–that he didn’t know?  That it’s never happened before?  A few weeks ago, we saw the greatest performance of trainer and owner who were putting on such grief-stricken acts because their champion could not enter the Belmont.  They were so phony–and their phoniness was so easy to see.  Today we get more info on this great horse and know that these two slime guys knew full well about the problems IHA had and had already sold him to Japan for a cool $10 million well before the Belmont.  Can Asmussen beat that phony performance?  What can we do to be sure this guy loses his clients and jumps in a washing machine to get clean?

  • Deb Jones

    I agree. These mares were run through ‘loose’ at the end of the auction. Loose horses are regularly sold to kill buyers at auctions throughout the country.

  • Chrysler Susan

    Where are the foals? Those foals are too young!

  • Chrysler Susan

    Where are the foals? Those foals are too young!

  • NorthStar326

    Where was Maggie Moss…the alleged advocate against horse slaughter, and atty (possibly former) to Steve Assmussen? Donna Keen is a true horse hero! And thanks also to Deborah Jones. Good job!

    • maggi moss

      Mr. Northstar-          I am not an “alleged advocate ag horse slaughter         I am horrified by horse slaughter and not only do this advocacy on a daily basis, but put my money where my mouth is;       As to my previous representation of Steve, that was four years ago, and yes I am an attorney.   As an attorney,  I have helped Donna many times,  lately in the La rescue;     Why the hell would you bring me into such a sad and tragic occurance            you have to be a real winner.

      • NorthStar326

        Part of being an anti-slaughter advocate would be educating and even confronting those you come in contact with, especially those one does business with.  That was the point.

      • JEM

        Maggi-
        We too have been dragged through the mud on this one and we had no idea until Monday about our old mare, Luxury of Time being apart of this and have been working with Donna since.  While we can’t save them all because we are not always notified, we try very hard to when we find out.  We always find riding homes, show homes etc for anything we have retired since I got involved.  This is a sad situation.  I have no idea why or how they got to where they did and I won’t speak for the Asmussen’s, its up to them to decide to reply to everyone to make a statement.  We should not be blamed because we once owned one of the horses or you used a trainer allegedly involved.  All we can do is sleep well at night that we do the right thing.  Luxury of Time is coming home to Golden Eagle in the next few weeks to retire.  I still love horse racing and horses in general.  There is always a rainbow somewhere. 
        Janine, Golden Eagle Farm

        • Anita Xanax

          As well you should!! Were all owners and breeders as gracious and responsible as you two are. You get what you put in, and people get what they deserve.

  • NorthStar326

    Where was Maggie Moss…the alleged advocate against horse slaughter, and atty (possibly former) to Steve Assmussen?

  • Linda Dougherty

    May Flower, I wrote this back before the advent of the Internet, so I would have to scan it in, and since the DRF was a broadsheet at the time, I’m not sure how it would turn out.

  • Pjleft

    A terrible story…one of three on the mast head today…the NYT report got a little recirculation but this one and the Rudision Downs story are only here on the PR…The Bloodhorse does a good job taking issue with the NYT article but you will see none of this bad news at the DRF…The Assmussen family really needs to respond to this story…their silence is incriminating…with all of this stuff going on, you have to think the bad guys outnumber the good guys… 

    Say it ain’t so Steve!

  • Pjleft

    A terrible story…one of three on the mast head today…the NYT report got a little recirculation but this one and the Rudision Downs story are only here on the PR…The Bloodhorse does a good job taking issue with the NYT article but you will see none of this bad news at the DRF…The Assmussen family really needs to respond to this story…their silence is incriminating…with all of this stuff going on, you have to think the bad guys outnumber the good guys… 

    Say it ain’t so Steve!

  • Mwimberley279

    I worked with Darling Dame at Three Chimneys in 97-98. Cannot tell you how much I loved that little mare and her Woodman colt. Thank you for stepping up as always and helping Luxury of Time.

  • NorthStar326

    There are thousands of unanamed, unheralded horses saved each year by folks such as Gail Vacca.  Having put up the money myself for several, it is beyond heartbreaking when you CAN’T save them all.  And people like me shouldn’t have to save other people’s irresponsibly and inhumanely discarded horses.   The only reason these horses made the news is because they were connected to a well-known name.  One who, IMO, should have been thrown out of racing a long time ago.  But the name is not why they were rescued.  It is what opened the door to folks that may not have known, but wanted to do something.  It is common practice to attempt to notify past connections or the breeder, to help.  Usually, it is assumed the people don’t know about how their horses (former horses) may have ended up.  BUT IN THIS CASE, there was an alleged witness to who brought them there.

  • Deb Jones

    I wish you were right on that but unfortunately that is not so.

  • NorthStar326

    Anybody that knows which end of a horse eats and which end poops, knows damn well of the high probability of going to slaughter from those auctions.  Seriously…in this economy, how many of those mares do you think would have been bought by decent, caring folks?  Give me a break.  Surely you are smarter than that…or maybe you are just one of the folks that believes that sort of thing is okay.  And pretending to be naive or pleading the person who brought them to the auction was naive is too pathetic for words.  That is a “game” that has long since lost its believability.

  • Barbara

    Those former fast stakes horses south of the border are a dirty secret that no one want to report about. 

  • Barbara

    add the word, will.

  • Beach Bum

    Thank you for this and your actions/attitude, too–if everyone felt like this, the world would be a better horse place… :-)  

  • inresponse

    clearly, clearlyambiguous, you have no knowledge of the person or people involved in this rescue, nor what motivates them.  As a person who has helped  save the lives of 55 tb horses in Oregon recently, the motiovation could simply be wanting to see good, sound horses go to good homes instead of being subject to the horrendous cruelty of slaughter.  Just watch a video of it sometime, any normal person would be nausiated by it.  If the animals were lame or sick or dying I could understand slaughter in a humane way, but not healthy unwanted horses.

  • Beach Bum

     And, even though I am just an outsider looking in and not a part of this business, I’d advise everyone that GIVES A DAMN to do what JEM and(I believe; this is what I’ve heard) the Mosses do and TRACK YOUR HORSES AS BEST YOU CAN…

    On that score, Geefour, Union Rags’ full brother, last raced at Penn National 3 years ago according to Equibase, but other than that I can find no internet trace of him.  If anyone knows what happened to him, I would appreciate knowing.  Big prayers… 

  • Beach Bum

     Ditto

  • Beach Bum

     I’m just a peon but I’d beg people not to overbreed.  And, even whilst I also dislike the “livestock” being treated cruelly, too, when was the last time you watched the cows race and win people millions of dollars?!!  Fully agree… 

  • Beach Bum

     Yes, I would imagine there’s a lot less chance of falling through the kill cracks if the rescues or owner/breeders were contacted FIRST. 

  • NorthStar326

    As a small owner and even smaller breeder that cares for every horse we have…and who visits Santa Anita several times a week…IF there are names of owners, trainers and horses you know of…YOU SHOULD POST THEM.  We are going broke saving other people’s horses (my partner and I) and SILENCE is the greatest curse and killer of these horses!

  • Beach Bum

     I love to watch thoroughbreds run.  If I ever get to betting, and win anything, I’m giving it all to equine rescue.  This stuff is ridiculous… 

  • Schaefer Clay

    so glad i could go and pick up these mares and bring them back to Remember Me Rescue!! They are all such great horses and have good attitudes!! So blessed that i could help out and bring these mares home to a great home!

    • Clquick1234

      Yes!  We called and offered to transport as well. I am so glad that people stepped up and took care of these “girls” 

    • Rosiepaing

      Good job Clay – thanks so much for making more than one trip to get them home!

  • Schaefer Clay

    so glad i could go and pick up these mares and bring them back to Remember Me Rescue!! They are all such great horses and have good attitudes!! So blessed that i could help out and bring these mares home to a great home!

  • Beach Bum

     I have known the people concerned to work tirelessly for thoroughbred rescue. 

  • NorthStar326

    Old broodmares and crippled geldings are the most at risk (of the TB).  But in this economy…no one is really safe. 

  • Beach Bum

     Disgusting–sounds like the dirtbag that wouldn’t let the small farm owner keep Exceller.  :-( 

  • Beach Bum

    Again, disgusting… 

  • Ncannon

    Are there any good guys in racing? No wonder I have sleep problems and shower constantly. This underbelly in our industry is destroying my soul. I must get out.

  • Ncannon

    Are there any good guys in racing? No wonder I have sleep problems and shower constantly. This underbelly in our industry is destroying my soul. I must get out.

  • Vanessa Nye thoroughbred owner

    I am absolutely horrified by this. This is exactly what I as a thoroughbred owner campaign against so much. This is inexcusable behavior and the owners of these animals should be held responsible and accountable. Thank goodness for the kindness ofthe individual who saved these animals. these people are educated with resources available to them who have Benefitted greatly from these animals. Something needs to change in the industry. People are not happy with this and I am glad that the public is being mAde aware of this irresponsible and deplorable act. These are living creatures who deserve much more. I take care of all oF my horses while racing and when done racing. If these owners did not want these horses anymore they had a duty to place them in safe homes or retirement programs or donate them monitarily to a rescue. I am disgusted as I know many many people are

  • Vanessa Nye thoroughbred owner

    I am absolutely horrified by this. This is exactly what I as a thoroughbred owner campaign against so much. This is inexcusable behavior and the owners of these animals should be held responsible and accountable. Thank goodness for the kindness ofthe individual who saved these animals. these people are educated with resources available to them who have Benefitted greatly from these animals. Something needs to change in the industry. People are not happy with this and I am glad that the public is being mAde aware of this irresponsible and deplorable act. These are living creatures who deserve much more. I take care of all oF my horses while racing and when done racing. If these owners did not want these horses anymore they had a duty to place them in safe homes or retirement programs or donate them monitarily to a rescue. I am disgusted as I know many many people are

  • NorthStar326

    Perhaps you weren’t with Golden Eagle when Post It Note and another crippled stakes winning gelding was pulled from a feedlot and ended up (to this day) supported by a local rescue.   I’ll be glad to get you the info, if you would like.  They were both listed by JC as “died”.

  • Beach Bum

     That would be great; but, with respect, are you holding your breath?  Neither am I… :-( 

  • stillriledup

     You mean i won’t have to see half a dozen nickel bred horses named Warren running in So Cal on every racing card every day in the near future? Sad day for sure.

  • Not Sure

    It sounds like a no win for the Assmussens. If they humanely euthanize the broodmares , there would be an article about how they just killed 10 broodmares. And since they sent them to an auction, the older horses that noone would really want as a riding horses cause their old ,plus probably have issues that are the reason they were retired from racing. Im not sticking up for what they did but what are the realilistical things to do with these horses. They could of left them out in a field till they died , which is a crappy death as well as slaughter witch they didnt directily send them to but they knew there was a chance they could end up there. Im just curious what the rescues are gonna do with them, if they dont get adopted ???? Im happy all the mares were saved. Just wondering whats gonna happen to them next, kids and families want young sound horese not 7 and up horse that might have issues.

    • Barbara

      No one knows or finds out when you euthanize a mare unless she is famous or you tell. So no, their choices were not a. send them to kill auction or b. starve them in a dusty Texas field. 

      And no, not all families want a young horse they have to put a lot of work into, especially not for kids. All horses have issues. Mostly related to human “issues” of stupidity, greed, selfishness, and denial.

      • Not Sure

        How dose 10 bodies leave a farm without any one knowing??? How about the other question??? Im not really sure how to feel about this based on what are they gonna do with these ex b roodmare who havent seen a saddle since they left the track. I believe its a tough spot to bein and if it wasnt for their name noone would of made a story out of this. It also bothers me that they were only saved because they came from well known people, instead of trying to save young one people bailed out these older ones. Since we are over populated with horse what do we do with all the not wanted ones so to say??? I think i rather send them to an auction and give them some sort of shot to live then put a horse down for no reason except i didnt want it anymore. In no means is slaughter the answer.

        • Barbara

          They don’t leave. (shakes head here.) I disagree they were saved only because of who owned them. How do you know if they left a “young one” instead? But I agree it is only a story because of who owned them. Being retrained as a saddle horse is not the only option BTW. But the Asmussens knew damn well who would buy these mares. Anyway, this isn’t news, this is how many breeders cull, particularly cheap end breeders who breed too many in the first place. Difference now? The world is watching and communicates instantly.

        • Been There

          There are thoroughbreds rescued from auctions all the time that no one has any idea who they are, or where they came from, until after they are rescued. There is a huge network of people who work endlessly to try and rescue as many of these animals as possible, regardless of if they came from well known people or not.

          There is nothing about going to the auction that is nice for these animals, if they go to the killers or not. Many go for days without food or water, stuffed in small spaces with as many horses as can fit. There is nothing good about what the majority of these animals go through. 

          If they have “some sort of shot” of living and finding a home at auction, the people that send them there could find them a home and eliminate any shot of these horses going to the killers.

          • Not Sure

            So i guess they should of secretly put them down and end it all….. I guess if they advertise them and they didnt sell or find homes they are gonna be put down anyway. What dose the rescue do with horse noone adopts ??? Puts them to sleep as well… I know we cant save all the horses people dont want but what is the right answer to do with unwanted older horses???

          • Been There

            Again, the auction is not the answer. These people have the resources to find other homes. Scroll down and read the post by JEM, stating they would have taken their mare in had they been called. There are no excuses for thoroughbreds to be going to auctions like this. 

          • Not Sure

            So what will come from this??? Will anything happen that will cost them to start caring??? Or is this something that will show people oh well send them to auction and they will either go to a good home, get resced by a group or end up at slaughter??? What is there to stop people from doing this, nothing so people arent worried and will continue to send them without losing anysleep it looks like (while making some type of little profit).

          • Saratoga

             I don’t believe you can expect people to start caring, Not sure, or to be more responsible if they’re OK sending horses to bad places knowing that horse slaughter is brutal.

            An owner who races at Saratoga told me he liked the convenience of calling the killer on a Sunday, and having an empty stall and a check from the abbattoir on Monday.

            At least he didn’t pretend phony surprise where the horse went.

            Passing the slaughter ban – and enforcing it  – is absolutely necessary to protect US horses.

            The kill dealers are  lowlifes and will lie to people about a good home and all that.

          • JEM

            Luxury of Time is coming home in 2 weeks to Golden Eagle Farm in CA to live out her life.  Thanks for Jen at Three Chimneys and Donna at the rescue we still get the chance to get her back.  Although its not always the case, for Luxury its a happy ending.  

          • Guest

            Solutions?

            First we have to get over playing the victim card.. “look at all the unwanted horses” and think about supply and demand, like other businesses. 

            “Unwanted horses” don’t just appear in the cabbage patch. Unlike feral cats, people choose to breed horses.

            The Asmussen mares were bred back into a bad  market. This is crazy from a business sense, and says the value of the mares always was  by the pound.
             

            80% of Americans in a 2012 poll – including horsemen – want
            the Federal government to stop horse slaughter. The American people have evolved beyond the 19th century agrarian
            view of the horse.

            That’s roughly 250,000,000 Americans who think what almost happened to
            the Asmussen mares is abhorrent.     
            That’s a lot of potential fans.

            Meanwhile people inside the sport complain mightily the sport needs new fans.

            You can’t make this stuff up.

            Anyway, solution? Stop breeding so many! 

            Remove the payoff for bad behavior. Yes, pass the Federal ban on slaughter.  Let supply and demand work.

            It’s not like TBs are legal for slaughter. Routine drugs like Bute and wormers – banned from food animals.

            Raise the JC registration fee. Set aside $$ into a retirement fund from all along the profit engine, for when the horse is no longer profitable. 

            Include the broodmares, for heavens sake.

            Hire Jack Bauer  & Co CPAs to audit the fund.

      • Anita Xanax

        How does retiring 10 mares from service and letting them love their lives out with love, respect and dignity equate to “starve(ing) in a dusty Texas field”?? Have you ever SEEN how well loved mares are retired? That statement is one of the more ridiculous ones i’ve seen on this thread…

  • Not Sure

    It sounds like a no win for the Assmussens. If they humanely euthanize the broodmares , there would be an article about how they just killed 10 broodmares. And since they sent them to an auction, the older horses that noone would really want as a riding horses cause their old ,plus probably have issues that are the reason they were retired from racing. Im not sticking up for what they did but what are the realilistical things to do with these horses. They could of left them out in a field till they died , which is a crappy death as well as slaughter witch they didnt directily send them to but they knew there was a chance they could end up there. Im just curious what the rescues are gonna do with them, if they dont get adopted ???? Im happy all the mares were saved. Just wondering whats gonna happen to them next, kids and families want young sound horese not 7 and up horse that might have issues.

  • FE Davidson

    Based upon information that has been ascertained, but not independently verified, my opinion is that you should enter the SA backside from the front entrance, stop at the first barn on your left, and begin your investigation there.  That should be a good start.  But don’t expect any assistance from those in authority, as certain locations are considered hallowed ground.

  • NorthStar326

    When all efforts to find a responsible and humane existence for the horse are exhausted, then it is up to a responsible owner or breeder to have the character, honor and courage to humanely put the horse down.  Not give it away or send it to a well-known kill buyer auction, aka the local low end feed, tack and horse auction.

  • Sunny

    It’s now mid July…past weaning time if they foaled this spring as most TB’s foal before the end of march.  Many farms wean 4-6 months of age, THIS IS NOT ABNORMAL!!!  These mares likely did not JUST foal!  And just because they were covered, they are likely NOT in foal and that is why they were sent to a sale.  Until someone coughs up positive ultrasounds on each and every one of them, the assumption should not be made.  Why waste the money covering the mares and checking them if you plan on dumping them? 
    Let me ask everyone who is outraged something.  If you had found out they took every last one of these mares out to the back 40 and shot and buried them, would that make you happy?  If they consigned them to a mixed TB sale to continue their breeding careers, or lack therof, would it make it any better?  How about if they sold them privately?  Is that ok?  Just becasue they went to an open auction does not mean they intended to send them to slaughter…I am sure, after so many years in the business, if Assmussens decided they wanted these mares to go for meat, they know a buyer with a hook up to eliminate the auction, and they wouldn’t have had to share the comission either.

    • Clquick1234

      Responsible owners, trainers, breeders have the capability to reach out and sell or give the horse a new home. And if there is no retirement facility, rescue or private individual to take them, then yes to have the horse humanely put down either by injection or a bullet is preferable to sending them to a known kill buyer auction and having them transported down South and put through the slaughter house line.  Have you ever seen it?   

    • Guest

      Empress Jones colt by Heckle 4/13/2012;
      Our Revival filly by Heckle 4/27/12;
      Valid Obsession filly by Intimidator 4/24/12;
      Rhododendron filly by Seneca Jones 3/8/12;
      Adios La Cucaracha colt by Intimidator 4/7/12 and
      Endless Storm colt by Intimidator 4/12/12

    • Been There

      Yes, all of those options are better because they are more humane. Shooting a horse in the head is actually the most humane way to euthanize one. Much less suffering than what they endure throughout the entire ordeal of being sent to slaughter. If they attempted to find homes, and none could be located, this would be greatly preferred to going to slaughter. It’s not “if they intended to send them to slaughter”, it’s the fact that they did not care if they went.

      Everyone else seems very aware that this is an auction that killers frequent, do you think they were unaware? And obviously, since there are people who paid for and rescued these horses, using an excuse that they could not find homes is not an option. One breeder has already stepped forward, and surly Nelson Bunker Hunt would have taken the mare he bred as opposed to sending her to a killer auction.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kathryn-Baker/100000670932928 Kathryn Baker

      BS Sunny, are you working for them as a PR rep? They had many other options. Shame on them.

    • Jazzman1

      You must be massively naive.

  • Sunny

    It’s now mid July…past weaning time if they foaled this spring as most TB’s foal before the end of march.  Many farms wean 4-6 months of age, THIS IS NOT ABNORMAL!!!  These mares likely did not JUST foal!  And just because they were covered, they are likely NOT in foal and that is why they were sent to a sale.  Until someone coughs up positive ultrasounds on each and every one of them, the assumption should not be made.  Why waste the money covering the mares and checking them if you plan on dumping them? 
    Let me ask everyone who is outraged something.  If you had found out they took every last one of these mares out to the back 40 and shot and buried them, would that make you happy?  If they consigned them to a mixed TB sale to continue their breeding careers, or lack therof, would it make it any better?  How about if they sold them privately?  Is that ok?  Just becasue they went to an open auction does not mean they intended to send them to slaughter…I am sure, after so many years in the business, if Assmussens decided they wanted these mares to go for meat, they know a buyer with a hook up to eliminate the auction, and they wouldn’t have had to share the comission either.

  • Kat

    Sad, but nothing new. The Assmusens have been “dumping” horses there for years…. I used to live right there and found some, that I still have pictures of, who belonged to them. Talked to the girl who brought the horses to the auction (Asmussen employee) and she did not seem to think it was anything wrong or unusual about the whole deal… Very sad

  • maggi moss

    Mr. Northstar-          I am not an “alleged advocate ag horse slaughter         I am horrified by horse slaughter and not only do this advocacy on a daily basis, but put my money where my mouth is;       As to my previous representation of Steve, that was four years ago, and yes I am an attorney.   As an attorney,  I have helped Donna many times,  lately in the La rescue;     Why the hell would you bring me into such a sad and tragic occurance            you have to be a real winner.

  • Kat

    Sad, but nothing new. The Assmusens have been “dumping” horses there for years…. I used to live right there and found some, that I still have pictures of, who belonged to them. Talked to the girl who brought the horses to the auction (Asmussen employee) and she did not seem to think it was anything wrong or unusual about the whole deal… Very sad

  • Barbara

    No one knows or finds out when you euthanize a mare unless she is famous or you tell. So no, their choices were not a. send them to kill auction or b. starve them in a dusty Texas field. 

    And no, not all families want a young horse they have to put a lot of work into, especially not for kids. All horses have issues. Mostly related to human “issues” of stupidity, greed, selfishness, and denial.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_BI3WY6ZRGAXR2KS25RHBDGAW4Y AZ Wildcat

    Why is it the same names over and over – Asmussen, Dutrow, O’Neill, Mullins… Does anybody in this sport get that we are no longer the darling of the public’s eye, that we are seen as animal abusers who run them until they can’t walk and then ship them off to Canada and Mexico to feed some Frenchman? Yes the New York Times sensationalizes the whole thing but when the series started there was a picture of a dead two year old colt next to a dumpster with blue wraps tossed on the body. Yes it was New Mexico and yes it was a quarter horse, but it was a dead young horse that was tossed out like trash. What exactly do we expect the public to come away with? This has become a big damn game for the wealthy owners and breeders – the ones who make noise about “how terrible this is”, and then hire one of the big offenders to train their horses. We can whinny, bleat and moo but we own this one lock, stock and barrel. If we can’t get some serious change this is the end of horse racing in this country. The majority of the public sees the sport in a negative light and all it will take is a high profile breakdown at the Breeders Cup, Triple Crown or Travers and you will see referendums on the ballot like the one in Massachusetts that ended greyhound racing. We talk and talk and talk and still load the gun, aim it down and shoot ourselves in the foot.  Frog poison, cobra venom, cocaine, amphetamines, morphine, milkshakes, unsound horses racing, trainers punching out other trainers. Unbelievable. It is now or never folks, if you want to save this sport you need to be part of the solution and not the problem. Start here with the Asmussen gang and ban them all from the sport forever. Give them a new line of work that they can handle – something that lines up with their competency, like politics…

    • Not Sure

      If you ban them they can just put everything in someone elses name and keep the ball rolling and if that person gets people mad , theyll just switch names again. No one knows whos ,who any more.

      • NorthStar326

        Not if you nail the owners and make it so their horses cannot run.  They do that now, to some degree.  But not nearly enough. 

        • Not Sure

          If they nail the owner and stop the horses from running what will stop that owner from making sure they send all to slaughter??

          • NorthStar326

            The public!  And good grief, if you are saying that an owner will send the horses to slaughter because they get caught and fined, etc., I guess that underscores how irresponsible and undeserving such people are.  As I said earlier, there will always be those that are so slimey, even the best laws are not enough, but most people would rather not risk tangling with the law or the public wrath.  That would be a big relief to the overburdened “rescue community”. 

    • Convene

       That we accept them up here is the shame of this country! I used to see the double-decker livestock trucks come thru customs when I was a trucker and it broke my heart. Some of ‘em still had the braids in their manes and tails! We in Canada have argued this for decades to no avail (yet). All the hoopla about “history” doesn’t seem to want to include the fact that wherever in history you find a footprint, you will find a hoofprint beside it. Guess you only count if you’re a human …

  • Clquick1234

    Responsible owners, trainers, breeders have the capability to reach out and sell or give the horse a new home. And if there is no retirement facility, rescue or private individual to take them, then yes to have the horse humanely put down either by injection or a bullet is preferable to sending them to a known kill buyer auction and having them transported down South and put through the slaughter house line.  Have you ever seen it?   

  • Barbara

    It is true that the Asmussens are just getting busted for what they have always done, and what MANY others have done, and that possibly includes more well regarded factory breeders, too.

  • Barbara

    It is true that the Asmussens are just getting busted for what they have always done, and what MANY others have done, and that possibly includes more well regarded factory breeders, too.

  • Clquick1234

    Yes!  We called and offered to transport as well. I am so glad that people stepped up and took care of these “girls” 

  • Wingtips

    That is what they want people to believe. 

  • Not Sure

    How dose 10 bodies leave a farm without any one knowing??? How about the other question??? Im not really sure how to feel about this based on what are they gonna do with these ex b roodmare who havent seen a saddle since they left the track. I believe its a tough spot to bein and if it wasnt for their name noone would of made a story out of this. It also bothers me that they were only saved because they came from well known people, instead of trying to save young one people bailed out these older ones. Since we are over populated with horse what do we do with all the not wanted ones so to say??? I think i rather send them to an auction and give them some sort of shot to live then put a horse down for no reason except i didnt want it anymore. In no means is slaughter the answer.

  • Wingtips

    Shame doesn’t matter to sociopaths

  • Guest

    Empress Jones colt by Heckle 4/13/2012;
    Our Revival filly by Heckle 4/27/12;
    Valid Obsession filly by Intimidator 4/24/12;
    Rhododendron filly by Seneca Jones 3/8/12;
    Adios La Cucaracha colt by Intimidator 4/7/12 and
    Endless Storm colt by Intimidator 4/12/12

  • Been There

    Yes, all of those options are better because they are more humane. Shooting a horse in the head is actually the most humane way to euthanize one. Much less suffering than what they endure throughout the entire ordeal of being sent to slaughter. If they attempted to find homes, and none could be located, this would be greatly preferred to going to slaughter. It’s not “if they intended to send them to slaughter”, it’s the fact that they did not care if they went.

    Everyone else seems very aware that this is an auction that killers frequent, do you think they were unaware? And obviously, since there are people who paid for and rescued these horses, using an excuse that they could not find homes is not an option. One breeder has already stepped forward, and surly Nelson Bunker Hunt would have taken the mare he bred as opposed to sending her to a killer auction.

  • Not Sure

    If you ban them they can just put everything in someone elses name and keep the ball rolling and if that person gets people mad , theyll just switch names again. No one knows whos ,who any more.

  • NorthStar326

    Gate 7 or 8?

  • Barbara

    They don’t leave. (shakes head here.) I disagree they were saved only because of who owned them. How do you know if they left a “young one” instead? But I agree it is only a story because of who owned them. Being retrained as a saddle horse is not the only option BTW. But the Asmussens knew damn well who would buy these mares. Anyway, this isn’t news, this is how many breeders cull, particularly cheap end breeders who breed too many in the first place. Difference now? The world is watching and communicates instantly.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000244251848 Glenn Craven

    Well, they were bred-back, but may or may not be in foal I suppose. In fact, on the older mares my first speculation — and it would be just that, speculation — is that they DIDN’T get in-foal, hence the decision to dispense with them. … But from what we can read here and the JC’s records, we can only determine that all of the mares were bred. No way of knowing (without vetting them now) whether all, some or none are actually in-foal.

  • Been There

    There are thoroughbreds rescued from auctions all the time that no one has any idea who they are, or where they came from, until after they are rescued. There is a huge network of people who work endlessly to try and rescue as many of these animals as possible, regardless of if they came from well known people or not.

    There is nothing about going to the auction that is nice for these animals, if they go to the killers or not. Many go for days without food or water, stuffed in small spaces with as many horses as can fit. There is nothing good about what the majority of these animals go through. 

    If they have “some sort of shot” of living and finding a home at auction, the people that send them there could find them a home and eliminate any shot of these horses going to the killers.

  • Roseandjoesmith

    I seriously doubt the Asmussens would have bought the horses back since they sent them to the auction in the first place. It seems obvious the horses were not wanted any longer for whatever reason. It is a sad to say that these unfortunate horses were surely bound for a long journey to a horrific end in Mexico. I have 7 “retired ” thoroughbreds and yes they were “rescued ”. They came from the low level claiming ranks at various tracks where horses are injected and otherwise medicated so they can race and keep on racing. The lucky ones break down which ends the abuse. The end for the vast majority of the tough survivors is slaughter. We gain their trust, we train them, they do our bidding and many earn a lot of money and in the end we betray them. There is a better way. Slaughter is not the answer.   

  • Sunny

     Part of the problem with racing.  The TB’s can be traced, so there is more attention called because they can pin someone to it.  Only 27,000 TBs were registered last year, 61,000 QH.  Take a look at a stockyard, the vast majority of horses there are stock horses, drafts and ponies.  But because TB’s have a name forever attached via tattoo, the industry takes a kicking on every single horse identified.  Not condoning what Assmusen did, but it’s always the TB breeders/owners/trainers who get outed with nary a word about the stock horse breeders who produce 3 times the foals in any given year.

  • Not Sure

    So i guess they should of secretly put them down and end it all….. I guess if they advertise them and they didnt sell or find homes they are gonna be put down anyway. What dose the rescue do with horse noone adopts ??? Puts them to sleep as well… I know we cant save all the horses people dont want but what is the right answer to do with unwanted older horses???

  • Been There

    Again, the auction is not the answer. These people have the resources to find other homes. Scroll down and read the post by JEM, stating they would have taken their mare in had they been called. There are no excuses for thoroughbreds to be going to auctions like this. 

  • Not Sure

    So what will come from this??? Will anything happen that will cost them to start caring??? Or is this something that will show people oh well send them to auction and they will either go to a good home, get resced by a group or end up at slaughter??? What is there to stop people from doing this, nothing so people arent worried and will continue to send them without losing anysleep it looks like (while making some type of little profit).

  • Ajsapollo

    Donna Keen & Remember Me Rescue are very real with what they do.  I have an ex-horse grazing in my back yard she rescued.  I drove 600 miles to visit her operation, meet her staff & bring home a TB no longer able to race.  Look up Remeber Me Rescue on facebook, the brown/bay TB drinking sweet ice tea out of a blue plastic glass now lives in the hills of Arkansas.  That should prove she & I “put up our purse to support them”.  I have bought & sold to killer buyers.  They don’t bid any higher than what their profit margin will allow & some horses are too dangerous & need to be put down.  I’ve used the money from those slaughtered to support the good ones in the past.  P.S. Now I have cows to support my “horse” habit!!! 

  • Ajsapollo

    I would rather see a horse go to slaughter than to starve to death.  There is entirely TOOOOO much of that now that the US slaughter houses have been shut down.  It doesn’t make sense to me why the mares were bred back if the intention was to sent them to slaughter.  As sad as it is, horse slaughter is a necessity.  Without it horses have no value & are treated as such.

  • CK70

    You have got to be one of the most ignorant individuals I have ever come across. You want to ban Steve Asmussen from horse racing because his parents took a trailer load of horses to a sale ring?

    First of all, he did not “send his horses to slaughter”. He sent his horses to a sale ring. A LOT of people run their horses through auction rings.

    Why are you people only throwing a fit over this handful? Go protest and belittle every other individual out there who has ever sold a horse for a cheap price because they don’t have a need for them anymore. I am 100% for finding a “good” home for a horse, but in this business, I cannot afford to sit around and wait for that “good” home to appear.

    If you are looking for somebody who is willing to keep every horse that has ever been in their care, well then you are looking into the wrong sport.

    Ban a guy for sending horses to an auction? Please. Absolutely ridiculous.

  • desertrailrat

     How cool, loved the story and the pics.  Best of luck to Taxi when he hits the track, you guys keep up the great work!

  • NorthStar326

    The problem is solved by requiring that all horses be registered and/or licensed.  Just like dogs.  The fees could be used to help these horses that end up this way and to prosecute the owners for neglect.  Anyone who objects to having their animal traceable to them, shouldn’t be allowed to own or breed animals.

  • NorthStar326

    Then we shouldn’t sell horses without a written “first right of refusal” clause and a “no slaughter” clause.  Sure there will always be those that don’t comply, but far more will comply.  Breach of contract lawsuit can be more money than it’s worth to be a low-life like the one who refused to sell Princess Tiffany back to her breeder.  That is just a sick human being.  I’d say animal but that would be an insult to the animals. 

  • NorthStar326

    Exactly Ziggy.  And that should be a requirement to be in the breeding and owning of racehorses.  One of the most giving (and beneficial to society) animals on the planet, has less rights than the Delta Smelt!

  • NorthStar326

    The only way to limit breeding is to require fees over and above stallion fees (that go to support these horses AND to have stiff penalties for such irresponsibility.  The racing industry deserves all the bad press they get, in relation to stuff like this!

  • NorthStar326

    Not if you nail the owners and make it so their horses cannot run.  They do that now, to some degree.  But not nearly enough. 

  • NorthStar326

    Ah…but it matters to egotists and narcissists.  They often travel disguised as sociopaths.

  • NorthStar326

    Bingo!

  • NorthStar326

    Donating to a university is just as bad as slaughter, only deferred.  That is where they end up eventually and being used as a guinea pig for research, is hardly a humane reward for their service to humans.

    BTW a “right” does not make for it being “right”. Rights given by man always have an ulterior motive.

  • NorthStar326

    Part of being an anti-slaughter advocate would be educating and even confronting those you come in contact with, especially those one does business with.  That was the point.

  • NorthStar326

    And will you take care of the mares you have and their foals if they don’t make you money? 

  • NorthStar326

    If they are with a rescue, as they should be, generally the policy is only to adopt out to NON-BREEDING homes.

  • NorthStar326

    Honorable people should not be hesitant to get involved.  In fact, the horses need such people for all of this to stop.

  • NorthStar326

    Then set up humane euthanization centers, where you can control the quality of “killing”.  Killing horses (at slaughter) in this country, after all their service to man and society has zero place.  The more we act as if it is a necessity, the more we are becoming like Rome burning.

  • NorthStar326

    Exactly!  They’ve been around the block a few times!

  • NorthStar326

    Not banned.  Just no stalls issued and “no slaughter policy tracks”.

  • Pat

    Unbelievable.  What makes anyone dump horses?  Especially someone with money who has made money off their backs and their babies?  Wish I had money so I could rescue more than just my one beautiful boy.  Wish a meteorite would gall on the heads of those who dump animals like trash and wake them up.  Such a lousy thing to do to living creatures.

  • Pat

    Unbelievable.  What makes anyone dump horses?  Especially someone with money who has made money off their backs and their babies?  Wish I had money so I could rescue more than just my one beautiful boy.  Wish a meteorite would gall on the heads of those who dump animals like trash and wake them up.  Such a lousy thing to do to living creatures.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kathryn-Baker/100000670932928 Kathryn Baker

    Not only did they rescue the mares, but you can add to the total number of lives saved, the unborn foals of the mares that were bred when dumped. This is just sad and disgusting.I’m so happy that John Murrell and the others who helped in this were there to turn this story around for the mares.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kathryn-Baker/100000670932928 Kathryn Baker

    Not only did they rescue the mares, but you can add to the total number of lives saved, the unborn foals of the mares that were bred when dumped. This is just sad and disgusting.I’m so happy that John Murrell and the others who helped in this were there to turn this story around for the mares.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Kathryn-Baker/100000670932928 Kathryn Baker

    BS Sunny, are you working for them as a PR rep? They had many other options. Shame on them.

  • Ccfarm

    Are you kidding? There are no ore starving horses now then there were before slaughter plants closed. Horses are being shipped to slaughter at a GREATER rate than when the plants were closed.

  • Allieconrad

    Seriously?you just admitted to selling a horse to slaughter and Remember Me rescue adopted a horse to you? Why not just euthanize the dangerous horse?

  • http://www.facebook.com/BrightFuturesFarm Bright Futures Farm

    Is there any way to reprimand Asmussen for his action?  That’s not nine horses… that’s potentially 18 horses that were dumped due to greed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/BrightFuturesFarm Bright Futures Farm

    Is there any way to reprimand Asmussen for his action?  That’s not nine horses… that’s potentially 18 horses that were dumped due to greed.

  • http://www.facebook.com/BrightFuturesFarm Bright Futures Farm

    Is there any way the industry can/will reprimand Asmussen for his actions?  That’s not nine horses dumped.  That’s potentially eighteen horses dumped if the mares are all in foal and carry to term.  Asmussen is another disgusting representation of greed within the industry. Something else to think about… Asmussen got “caught”. How many other prominent racing families have done this/do this and just haven’t been “caught” yet? Thank you again, John for helping Thoroughbreds in need, and Ray for sharing the information.

  • http://www.facebook.com/BrightFuturesFarm Bright Futures Farm

    Is there any way the industry can/will reprimand Asmussen for his actions?  That’s not nine horses dumped.  That’s potentially eighteen horses dumped if the mares are all in foal and carry to term.  Asmussen is another disgusting representation of greed within the industry.  Thank you again, John for helping Thoroughbreds in need.

  • Cass

    Unless Keith Asmussen is totally naive and I do not for one moment believe that, then he knowingly allowed his equipment to be used to transport horses potentially to be slaughtered.   On paper it looks as if he is trying to get as many Intimidator foals out there in order to make his stallion regardless of what may happen to the mothers of these foals.  This may not be illegal but it is morally wrong and he needs to speak up and tell us what he is doing and thinking.    Thank heavens people like Murrell and Jones counteract the heartlessness of this ‘prominent Texan family’ and the Asumussens.

  • Cass

    Unless Keith Asmussen is totally naive and I do not for one moment believe that, then he knowingly allowed his equipment to be used to transport horses potentially to be slaughtered.   On paper it looks as if he is trying to get as many Intimidator foals out there in order to make his stallion regardless of what may happen to the mothers of these foals.  This may not be illegal but it is morally wrong and he needs to speak up and tell us what he is doing and thinking.    Thank heavens people like Murrell and Jones counteract the heartlessness of this ‘prominent Texan family’ and the Asumussens.

  • Rosiepaing

    Good job Clay – thanks so much for making more than one trip to get them home!

  • http://www.facebook.com/rose.churchill.9 Rose Churchill

    to be honest ….these farms are probally left with no option in their defence…from a trainers standpoint we are often left with horses that once not a worthy investment are dumped on us to rehome! As we care for the animal we are left with the bill until we find a worthy home and sadly most of the time thats a hard task.  As with breeding farms these mares of assmussans arent reproductive obviously and of no use and owners cut their ties with the animals so how can they from a business standpoint keep 20 odd mares on the books of no value.. Personally if that was my establishment i would put them down rather than see them shipped accross to a mexican slaughterhouse out of respect to the animal. This is the sad side to our industry.. sometimes i wish there was a world wide  regulation to breeding horses and not just racehorses the same  as china controls their population of growth!   

  • http://www.facebook.com/rose.churchill.9 Rose Churchill

    to be honest ….these farms are probally left with no option in their defence…from a trainers standpoint we are often left with horses that once not a worthy investment are dumped on us to rehome! As we care for the animal we are left with the bill until we find a worthy home and sadly most of the time thats a hard task.  As with breeding farms these mares of assmussans arent reproductive obviously and of no use and owners cut their ties with the animals so how can they from a business standpoint keep 20 odd mares on the books of no value.. Personally if that was my establishment i would put them down rather than see them shipped accross to a mexican slaughterhouse out of respect to the animal. This is the sad side to our industry.. sometimes i wish there was a world wide  regulation to breeding horses and not just racehorses the same  as china controls their population of growth!   

  • Otis

    See the last connections of Geefour who won $132,938.00 for various connections. – Michael Gill and Anthony Adamo! We know that they are not known for their appropriate and responsible retirement of their horses.

  • Steve M

    God’s creatures should be taken care of. The number of T-breds “at risk” is high. Here is a rough estimate.

    If the T-bred foal crop is 25,000, and about 70% of mares bred have a foal, than the breeding mare population must be around 35,000. If those mares have a 10 year production life than around 3,500 mares from each annual crop are retired as replacements. As for stallions fewer than 1% of foal crop (~2% of foaled colts) has a chance of making it. For racing factor in an estimated 2% catastropic breakdown rate.

    So a foal crop of 25,000 – 3,500 replacement broodmares – 250 stallion prospects – 425 raceday breakdowns = 20,825 horses per crop which may be at risk.

    This is not perfect math. There are other variables and considerations. On the bright side hopefully a decent percentage are
    retrained as pleasure horses.

    How can this be handled going forward?  Could a certain percent be assessed on auction yearlings, 2yo, etc.? And a small fee charged per starter? This fund could be distributed to horse charities, education, development of a formal retirement process.. It would result in $millions in aid.

    • Sevencentsstable

      Your numbers are strictly TB stats. The catastrophic death rate during racing is 2 per thousand, not 2 per hundred. So that is .2% or .0002, not .002 as you figured in. We have a lot of problems to fix, undeniably, but we don’t need to exagerate them ;-)

      • Steve M

        The stats as I understand them are 2 TB deaths per 1,000 starts. Therefore if you have 100 horses that make 10 starts per year each then 2 horses would statistically breakdown. It’s confusing but that’s my take. This stat does not count morning breakdowns. Using rounded numbers for brevity.

  • Steve M

    God’s creatures should be taken care of. The number of T-breds “at risk” is high. Here is a rough estimate.

    If the T-bred foal crop is 25,000, and about 70% of mares bred have a foal, than the breeding mare population must be around 35,000. If those mares have a 10 year production life than around 3,500 mares from each annual crop are retired as replacements. As for stallions fewer than 1% of foal crop (~2% of foaled colts) has a chance of making it. For racing factor in an estimated 2% catastropic breakdown rate.

    So a foal crop of 25,000 – 3,500 replacement broodmares – 250 stallion prospects – 425 raceday breakdowns = 20,825 horses per crop which may be at risk.

    This is not perfect math. There are other variables and considerations. On the bright side hopefully a decent percentage are
    retrained as pleasure horses.

    How can this be handled going forward?  Could a certain percent be assessed on auction yearlings, 2yo, etc.? And a small fee charged per starter? This fund could be distributed to horse charities, education, development of a formal retirement process.. It would result in $millions in aid.

  • Roseandjoesmith

    I really get tired of the mantra better slaughter than starvation. Why do horses have to starve ?? There is too much irresponsible breeding going on. It is all about money and ego with little or no thought for the welfare of the animal…use and abuse, then slaughter.The practice of slaughter with all it’s ugly details enables irresponsible human behavior. I suggest all in favor of slaughter observe the process first hand and then give it their stamp of approval. 

  • Jazzman1

    You must be massively naive.

  • WT

    After being bred to junk stallions, who would buy them? I don’t understand why they would breed them back in the first place if they planned to dump them.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_DMVDPXMEECFBB2SRIGKIG5CO3Q John

    Thank you for what you and all the other unnamed compassionate folks like yourself do for this game beyond the brief few years of glory our equine heroes enjoy. As an owner, breeder and gambler it is MY responsibility to do everything I can to make sure this fate is not in store for any horse in my fold.

  • WT

    I had no idea the Asmussens were such low-lifes. This article turned my stomach. Sad, very sad. Thank you Mr. Murrell, Ms. Jones and Remember Me Rescue.

  • WT

    I had no idea the Asmussens were such low-lifes. This article turned my stomach. Sad, very sad. Thank you Mr. Murrell, Ms. Jones and Remember Me Rescue.

  • snazzygirl

    I don’t condone what the Asmussens did, but do any of you realize what the cost of hay is going to be in Texas this next year?  Hay buyers are going to the intermountain west to buy feed for horses and cattle in Texas.  It’s not getting easier to take care of horses in this economy and under these weather conditions.  I agree that if they wanted to cull their herd they should not have rebred the mares.  But none of you know if they have tried to sell the mares prior to taking them to auction and failed.  And if you want to sell a TB mare, they generally need to be in foal.  It’s easy to judge others on their actions when you haven’t been in their position.  So while many of you write bad things about the Asmussens maybe we should pity them a little.  It is particularly difficult to deal with horses – the heart interferes with the logical mind all the time.  Some people are willing to sell their horses for $1 on websites, and there are no buyers.  First and foremost, horses are livestock, regardless of how else you might consider them.  As someone who has taken horses to livestock auctions and euthanized them, it never is easy, but sometimes a horse owner has to make that hard decision.  I wish other horse owners would respond to this issue so there could be balance in this discussion. 

    • Gail Vacca

      snazzygirl brings up some very critical points here. I am completely disgusted by the actions of the Asmussen’s with regard to these mares, and fully believe that if no rehoming options were available to them, they should have euthanized these mares. That said…I fear that in the coming months we are only going to see a huge uptick in instances such as this because drought in much of the country has driven the cost of hay and feed into the stratoshpere making the already expensive cost of raising horses, nearly impossible for most people to weather.

      I have been a professional in the horse industry for over 35 years and have NEVER seen the cost of hay and feed escalate so quickly. Here in IL, which is one of the major hay producing states in the country, we have farmers completely shutting their barn doors right now, refusing to sell any hay, because they know that $5 or $6 bale of hay is going to bring them double by November or December. I have NEVER…EVER seen this happen, and I’ve seen some really bad years for hay. Truth be told, I am in the process of writing an article about this, because if our rescue is unable to advance purchase our hay needs for the next 10-12 months, we will be forced to close the doors. There is NO way a horse rescue can afford to feed its horses @ $10+ for a bale of hay and $15+ for a bag of mediocre feed.        

      • Beach Bum

         I am not a horsewoman but I would second this, as it’s what’s said in Texas, too.  I believe the cost of hay has doubled in the last 1-2 years; more informed Texans than me would have to comment.  I give to Remember Me whenever I can, and I wish I could give more.  If your rescue gets “in trouble” because of this, please put the word out and maybe people(along with me) would be willing to donate as they could, if donations would help.  And meanwhile, I pray for RAIN!!  :-) 

        • AngelaFromAbilene

          Yes, the price of hay has more than doubled in Texas.  A round bale of Coastal Bermuda used to run $50-$75.  Now, if you can even find it, it’s upwards of $150.  Our pastures are irrigated but with the price of farm diesel over $3 a gallon, even that is cost prohibititive. 

          On as side note: we are cutting hay next week and anything over what we must have for our cattle and horses, I would like to donate to Remember Me.  I don’t know if we’ll have much left after all the “rescues” we’ve taken in but it is my sincere hope.

    • Jazzman1

      If you can’t afford to take care of your horses, you shouldn’t own them in the first place.  If you are not part of the humane solution, you are part of the problem.

      • Llc

        I am taking care of the horses I still have, which is 21.  I quit breeding mares 5+ years ago because the horse market was dropping in value.  So I am trying to be a responsible horse owner.  My point is that it is easy to point a finger if you have never owned multiple horses.  IT IS NOT EASY to own and care for horses now.  And there will be more instances of horses going to the killers through auctions because of hard times.  I worry for rescue operations – they will be squeezed to no end to maintain the horses they have already rescued.  Maybe the people complaining about the Asmussens should open their wallets and donate to horse rescue operations.

        • Jazzman1

          Horse slaughter is not the answer.  It is cruel and inhumane.  I have been working tirelessly on this issue for 10+ years.  I have watched responsible compassionate rescuers step up and save these horses many many times.  It is disgusting to witness these uncaring greedy owners.  The rescuers try to right their wrong.  I’m glad they got caught.  They will think twice next time they nerd to “cull” their herd.  Maybe the Asmussens should open their wallets to help pay for these mares retirement.  You know, with them being such good upstanding people and all. 

          • Beach Bum

             Yes, donating to Remember Me or helping to pay for the mares’ care until they are placed in homes would go a long way to redeeming this.  Uh, we’re listening… 

  • snazzygirl

    I don’t condone what the Asmussens did, but do any of you realize what the cost of hay is going to be in Texas this next year?  Hay buyers are going to the intermountain west to buy feed for horses and cattle in Texas.  It’s not getting easier to take care of horses in this economy and under these weather conditions.  I agree that if they wanted to cull their herd they should not have rebred the mares.  But none of you know if they have tried to sell the mares prior to taking them to auction and failed.  And if you want to sell a TB mare, they generally need to be in foal.  It’s easy to judge others on their actions when you haven’t been in their position.  So while many of you write bad things about the Asmussens maybe we should pity them a little.  It is particularly difficult to deal with horses – the heart interferes with the logical mind all the time.  Some people are willing to sell their horses for $1 on websites, and there are no buyers.  First and foremost, horses are livestock, regardless of how else you might consider them.  As someone who has taken horses to livestock auctions and euthanized them, it never is easy, but sometimes a horse owner has to make that hard decision.  I wish other horse owners would respond to this issue so there could be balance in this discussion. 

  • Mary Overman

     ”the whole industry makes no sense to me anymore”  Feeling the same way.

  • Clearlyambiguous

     u r indeed a “rescue”person, and applaud ur efforts. My Q here–these are the same people who’se actions have consigned hundreds of thousands of horses to the trip to  Mexico.  Why should they receive any credibility with what they have “achieved” for the  horse, whatever is the correct end for unwanted horses?

    My take is that OTB in general is 75% neglect and abuse.  We’ll never hear from this rescue  profiteer–horse shuffler–what happens to her “rescues”.  Most  of them  will suffer abuse and neglect and be in the same slaughter pipeline most of them  within 12 months.

    These auctions and the “kill” buyers serve a regrettable but necessary function in horse welfare.  the energy needs to be put  into humane usa slaughter and humane transport instead of the political agenda of these types who instead of horse welfare have as their goal that they just want to  “win”, never mind all the neglected horses.

  • Clearlyambiguous

     to reply–this is the problem that exists for the horse. u r willing to put a helpless animal through day after day of abuse so u can change the final moments.  for horse welfare–concentrate on the  abuse and neglect and develop a humane slaughter and transport in the usa.  it’s hardly all that difficult.

  • Penekamp

    With next year’s foal crop estimated to be the lowest since 1971 , I find it hard to believe that a 15 year old Storm Cat mare and even a 20 year old Seattle Slew mare could not have found good homes with breeders who were willing to give these mares another chance. This sounds like a pure case of laziness and carelessness. From the pedigrees described this appears to border on criminal waste regardless of the cruelty of the slaughter issue. Hopefully with fewer and fewer horses being bred there will be more room like at my farm for a pension field for any mare that is retired to live out her days in relative ease and comfort. This is a service that I offer all my clients for $1/day.

  • Anita Xanax

    Hey Bob, what else we’re they for when you run ten mares through the ring loose? Ready made broodmare band? I don’t think so. Man I’d give a whole lot for a daughter of The King…

  • Mary Overman

    There is no way to humanely slaughter horses.  The state of the art Canadian plant has proven that.  And there is no money available to enforce humane transport.  You can make all the rules you want but cheap, crappy, inhumane transport will still be the order of the day.  I mean – how hard is it, really, to call the vet out to put the horses down, then call the renderer?  The one and only reaspon to send to auction instead of euthanize at home is $.

  • FE Davidson

    8.

  • Anita Xanax

    PLEASE stop tarring Steve Asmussen with a brush needed for his father!! The RACING Admissions are related in blood only to this Asmussen. Steve had NOTHING to do with this!!

  • Clearlyambiguous

     if u  ever owned a horse u would fully understand how hard that is. i disagree completely that humane slaughter and  transport is not possible, even if one’s final moments, as opposed to one’s life in OTB abuse and neglect, is the emphasis. my guess would be that that slaughter employees do their jobs well and minimize abuse to extent possible.

  • Lisa Wintermote

    If u read through everything on here, it looks like Steve was the last trainer of record on Rhododendron and the listed breeder of Luxury of Times baby.

  • Anita Xanax

    Maggi, this was Keith not Steve. The only place his name showed up was as breeder of record for a foal from one of the mares. I’m sorry to hear Mrs. Asmussen isn’t well, prayers for her speedy recovery.

  • Perks

    HERES A FEW MORE…….
    Louisiana Racing Commission Issues Rulings
    HERES A FEW MORE !!!!

    July 10, 2012

    The Association of Racing Commissioners International maintains on its website a listing of rulings by state and provincial racing commissions from around the United States and Canada. These include a number recently imposed by the Louisiana Racing Commission on trainers of both American Quarter Horses and Thoroughbreds. Following are rulings that according to RCI are by the Louisiana commission.• Dermorphin was reported in post-race plasma and urine samples taken from Coltins Fast Dash, the winner of the May 26 Laddie Futurity (RG2) at Delta Downs. The positive was confirmed in the split sample. Following a stewards hearing, trainer Steve Garrison was suspended for six months and denied access to all facilities under the jurisdiction of the Louisiana State Racing Commission, and the purse was ordered to be redistributed. In the opinion of the stewards, the penalty imposed was insufficient and the case therefore was referred to LSRC for further action.• Dermorphin was reported in post-race plasma and urine samples taken from First Klas Fred, the winner of the May 25 Develop A Plan Stakes (G3) at Delta Downs. The positive was confirmed by split. Following a stewards hearing, trainer M. Heath Taylor was suspended for six months and denied access to all facilities under the jurisdiction of the LSRC, and the purse ordered redistributed. In the opinion of the stewards, the penalty imposed was insufficient and the case was referred to LSRC for further action. However, trainer Taylor then appealed the ruling, and the Commission granted a suspensive appeal, which stays the ruling.• Dermorphin was reported in post-race plasma and urine samples taken from JLS Game Boy, who won the sixth race on May 19 at Delta. The positive was confirmed by split. Following a stewards hearing, trainer Darrel Soileau was suspended six months and denied access to all facilities under LSRC jurisdiction, and the purse was ordered redistributed. In the opinion of the stewards, the penalty imposed was insufficient the case therefore was referred to LSRC for further action.• Dermorphin was reported in post-race plasma and urine samples taken from JLS The Secret Out, who won the sixth race on May 25 at Delta. The positive was confirmed by split. Following a stewards hearing, trainer Darrel Soileau was suspended six months and denied access to all facilities under LSRC jurisdiction, and the purse was ordered redistributed. In the opinion of the stewards, the penalty imposed was insufficient and the case was referred to LSRC for further action.Trainer Soileau has appealed both rulings, and the commission has granted suspensive appeals, which stay the rulings.• Phenylbutazone and flunixin was reported at severity Level I in a post-race blood sample taken from My Royal Is Beduino, who won the second race on June 16 at Delta Downs. Trainer Willie J. Simien declined his right to have the split portion tested and waived his right to a hearing. This was trainer Simien’s first ARCI Category IV or V violation in a 12-month period

  • Perks

    HERES A FEW MORE…….
    Louisiana Racing Commission Issues Rulings
    HERES A FEW MORE !!!!

    July 10, 2012

    The Association of Racing Commissioners International maintains on its website a listing of rulings by state and provincial racing commissions from around the United States and Canada. These include a number recently imposed by the Louisiana Racing Commission on trainers of both American Quarter Horses and Thoroughbreds. Following are rulings that according to RCI are by the Louisiana commission.• Dermorphin was reported in post-race plasma and urine samples taken from Coltins Fast Dash, the winner of the May 26 Laddie Futurity (RG2) at Delta Downs. The positive was confirmed in the split sample. Following a stewards hearing, trainer Steve Garrison was suspended for six months and denied access to all facilities under the jurisdiction of the Louisiana State Racing Commission, and the purse was ordered to be redistributed. In the opinion of the stewards, the penalty imposed was insufficient and the case therefore was referred to LSRC for further action.• Dermorphin was reported in post-race plasma and urine samples taken from First Klas Fred, the winner of the May 25 Develop A Plan Stakes (G3) at Delta Downs. The positive was confirmed by split. Following a stewards hearing, trainer M. Heath Taylor was suspended for six months and denied access to all facilities under the jurisdiction of the LSRC, and the purse ordered redistributed. In the opinion of the stewards, the penalty imposed was insufficient and the case was referred to LSRC for further action. However, trainer Taylor then appealed the ruling, and the Commission granted a suspensive appeal, which stays the ruling.• Dermorphin was reported in post-race plasma and urine samples taken from JLS Game Boy, who won the sixth race on May 19 at Delta. The positive was confirmed by split. Following a stewards hearing, trainer Darrel Soileau was suspended six months and denied access to all facilities under LSRC jurisdiction, and the purse was ordered redistributed. In the opinion of the stewards, the penalty imposed was insufficient the case therefore was referred to LSRC for further action.• Dermorphin was reported in post-race plasma and urine samples taken from JLS The Secret Out, who won the sixth race on May 25 at Delta. The positive was confirmed by split. Following a stewards hearing, trainer Darrel Soileau was suspended six months and denied access to all facilities under LSRC jurisdiction, and the purse was ordered redistributed. In the opinion of the stewards, the penalty imposed was insufficient and the case was referred to LSRC for further action.Trainer Soileau has appealed both rulings, and the commission has granted suspensive appeals, which stay the rulings.• Phenylbutazone and flunixin was reported at severity Level I in a post-race blood sample taken from My Royal Is Beduino, who won the second race on June 16 at Delta Downs. Trainer Willie J. Simien declined his right to have the split portion tested and waived his right to a hearing. This was trainer Simien’s first ARCI Category IV or V violation in a 12-month period

  • Anita Xanax

    Steve had nothing to do with shipping those mares, full stop.

  • dispute92

        After 4 months of trying to rescue a $2500 claimer, whom once the trainer/owner combo had heard we had interest, were then vindictive enough to put him in a $4000 claiming event, nothing surprises me. We even contacted the breeder for some assistance with the claiming price, ha…another joke. We had all but $500.
     What bothers me is that those of us without the wealth, such as these people are more fortunate to enjoy, have become forgetful of how they became so weatlhy. How do you consciously do this to your animals? How do you sleep at night? What did they do to you to deserve a visit to the slaughter pens in Texas. Thank God for people such as Mr. Murrell and the people who spend their days at these pens catching horrific finds such as this. Shame on the Asmussen family. But… remember they are not the only wealthy owners or breeders who are guilty of the same crime. Look at the breeders of horses now racing in 5000-25000 dollar claiming events at tracks you know are ones where horses next stop will be the same pens.

  • dispute92

        After 4 months of trying to rescue a $2500 claimer, whom once the trainer/owner combo had heard we had interest, were then vindictive enough to put him in a $4000 claiming event, nothing surprises me. We even contacted the breeder for some assistance with the claiming price, ha…another joke. We had all but $500.
     What bothers me is that those of us without the wealth, such as these people are more fortunate to enjoy, have become forgetful of how they became so weatlhy. How do you consciously do this to your animals? How do you sleep at night? What did they do to you to deserve a visit to the slaughter pens in Texas. Thank God for people such as Mr. Murrell and the people who spend their days at these pens catching horrific finds such as this. Shame on the Asmussen family. But… remember they are not the only wealthy owners or breeders who are guilty of the same crime. Look at the breeders of horses now racing in 5000-25000 dollar claiming events at tracks you know are ones where horses next stop will be the same pens.

  • Skip Ean

    Many thanks to both John Murrell and Deb Jones for saving these pregnant mares…now we watch and see the reaction of the Asmussens to this situation…

  • Skip Ean

    Many thanks to both John Murrell and Deb Jones for saving these pregnant mares…now we watch and see the reaction of the Asmussens to this situation…

  • Astra2555

    Silly me, Thinking this was in the past and these owners and trainers had a deep respect for their race horses .Young..Old..these beautiful horses should be respected and loved; its all about money and what a horse can earn; use me, abuse me, throw me away to be slaughtered and sent to mexico where most of U.S jobs were sent and left many Americians without a job; now our horses are exported to Mexico for human consumption What a dispicle act of human disregard for life.

  • Astra2555

    Silly me, Thinking this was in the past and these owners and trainers had a deep respect for their race horses .Young..Old..these beautiful horses should be respected and loved; its all about money and what a horse can earn; use me, abuse me, throw me away to be slaughtered and sent to mexico where most of U.S jobs were sent and left many Americians without a job; now our horses are exported to Mexico for human consumption What a dispicle act of human disregard for life.

  • Gail Vacca

    John…if everyone shared your determination to own responsibility for the fate of their horses, rescue groups like mine would gladly be out of business. Our slogan reads…every horse has an owner. every owner has a responsibility. oh if only people would consider this BEFORE they lead their mares to the breeding shed.

  • HorsesRGR8

    If you don’t like what they’re doing, then stop doing business with them!

  • WarHorse Mama

    Not only does this same breeder dump horses but they send out emails about wanting to transport your horses, if they treat their broodmares like this what does it tell you about how they treat horses on the transport. Theses mares were the back bone for his business and now they are no longer needed.  The horse market is overbred right now. I’m still upset at the fact that “I’ll have another ” the racing horse that could have won the triple crown was sold to Japan, I guess when he is done with breeding they will eat him..

    • Anita Xanax

      Wow…ignorance rampant. The one thing Ferdinand taught the Japanese horse industry is YOU DON’T EAT A NAME. Sunday Silence was treated like a KING, and so will Cookie be. At least he’ll get great mares for his book instead of leftovers.

  • HorsesRGR8

    If you don’t like what they’re doing, then stop doing business with them!

  • WarHorse Mama

    Not only does this same breeder dump horses but they send out emails about wanting to transport your horses, if they treat their broodmares like this what does it tell you about how they treat horses on the transport. Theses mares were the back bone for his business and now they are no longer needed.  The horse market is overbred right now. I’m still upset at the fact that “I’ll have another ” the racing horse that could have won the triple crown was sold to Japan, I guess when he is done with breeding they will eat him..

  • Bluehen16

     Clearly you must not be involved in the Horse racing business to not know the issue with Steve goes far beyond 10 horses being run thru a killers auction.

  • Freespirit

     I have owned plenty of horses and still do, doesn’t sound hard to me.  What you are suggesting is the impossible – Mary Overman has it right.

  • Freespirit

    They obviously didn’t get in foal is why they were dumping them. 

  • Freespirit

     Glad you have moved on to cows since you think slaughter is okay for horses under certain circumstances.  Even dangerous horses can be humanely euthanized. 

  • Bluehen16

     We’d love to hear from you!

    We appreciate your business! If you have any questions, comments, queries or simply need more
    information on our services, you may contact us at:

    Asmussen Horse Center

    P.O. Box 1861
    Laredo, TX 78044

    Phone: 956-723-5436
    Fax: 956-723-5845
    E-mail: kaasmussen@aol.com

    Asmussen Horse Center is located on 4707 E. Saunders, Laredo TX.

    El Primero Training Center

    P.O. Box 1785
    Laredo, TX 78044

    Phone: 956-722-4532
    Fax: 956-717-1357
    E-mail: kaasmussen@aol.com

    • Guest

       Any person who sends a horse to be in the care of the Asmussen’s is obviously a supporter of horse slaughter.  Any good owner would pull their horse from the Asmussen Family immediately.

  • Bluehen16

     We’d love to hear from you!

    We appreciate your business! If you have any questions, comments, queries or simply need more
    information on our services, you may contact us at:

    Asmussen Horse Center

    P.O. Box 1861
    Laredo, TX 78044

    Phone: 956-723-5436
    Fax: 956-723-5845
    E-mail: kaasmussen@aol.com

    Asmussen Horse Center is located on 4707 E. Saunders, Laredo TX.

    El Primero Training Center

    P.O. Box 1785
    Laredo, TX 78044

    Phone: 956-722-4532
    Fax: 956-717-1357
    E-mail: kaasmussen@aol.com

  • Gail Vacca

    snazzygirl brings up some very critical points here. I am completely disgusted by the actions of the Asmussen’s with regard to these mares, and fully believe that if no rehoming options were available to them, they should have euthanized these mares. That said…I fear that in the coming months we are only going to see a huge uptick in instances such as this because drought in much of the country has driven the cost of hay and feed into the stratoshpere making the already expensive cost of raising horses, nearly impossible for most people to weather.

    I have been a professional in the horse industry for over 35 years and have NEVER seen the cost of hay and feed escalate so quickly. Here in IL, which is one of the major hay producing states in the country, we have farmers completely shutting their barn doors right now, refusing to sell any hay, because they know that $5 or $6 bale of hay is going to bring them double by November or December. I have NEVER…EVER seen this happen, and I’ve seen some really bad years for hay. Truth be told, I am in the process of writing an article about this, because if our rescue is unable to advance purchase our hay needs for the next 10-12 months, we will be forced to close the doors. There is NO way a horse rescue can afford to feed its horses @ $10+ for a bale of hay and $15+ for a bag of mediocre feed.        

  • Rosiepaint

    These horses are under the care of Remember Me Rescue. They will be adopted to approved homes with a contract that states if circumstances change the horse goes back to RMR – you WILL NOT see these mares back in the pipeline.

  • Johnnyhotrod

    John R. Murrell sounds like a wonderful man.  For him to help out these horses brings joy to my heart.
    Now on the other hand, the Asmussens in my eyes are dispicable.  You should not be able to raise horses with the intent of making money.  You should be required by law to retire your horses in comfort if you choose to raise them.
    I would hate to think what  you would do to your children if they weren’t pulling their weight on your farm.
    I  hope you realize you will answer to a higher power when your time comes.  But I truly believe it will be a lower power.

    I am a volunteer at a horse rescue that also works with special needs children.  They do not charge and run on donations.  If you don’t want the horses, send them where they can be of help to others.

    • Anita Xanax

      Wow…twisted words and terribly skewed priorities…children>horses/dogs/cats>food animals…to even suggest someone would misraise a child because of how they handle their horses or that they eat meat?? REALLY??

  • Lisa Wintermote

    Anita, I don’t know if Steve did or didn’t but I do believe that he bears full responsibility for the welfare of Luxury of Time as he was using her to produce foals. As the trainer of Rhododendron, he also has a duty to her post racing. The “I didn’t know, it’s not my fault” doesn’t hold water in this industry anymore and thank God for that!

  • Johnnyhotrod

    John R. Murrell sounds like a wonderful man.  For him to help out these horses brings joy to my heart.
    Now on the other hand, the Asmussens in my eyes are dispicable.  You should not be able to raise horses with the intent of making money.  You should be required by law to retire your horses in comfort if you choose to raise them.
    I would hate to think what  you would do to your children if they weren’t pulling their weight on your farm.
    I  hope you realize you will answer to a higher power when your time comes.  But I truly believe it will be a lower power.

    I am a volunteer at a horse rescue that also works with special needs children.  They do not charge and run on donations.  If you don’t want the horses, send them where they can be of help to others.

  • Barbara

    The Asmussens are a very tight family;)

  • Kirby Yates

    This is how the racing industry is getting its image…I would have gladly taken one or two of those mare for a life of retirement….These are the money people….no heart

  • Kirby Yates

    This is how the racing industry is getting its image…I would have gladly taken one or two of those mare for a life of retirement….These are the money people….no heart

  • HappyHarriet

    This is completely and totally sickening.  …adding Donna Keen’s Remember Me Rescue to the list of people I am very happy to donate to, even if the amounts are limited by budget constraints. 

    What’s wrong with a country or a person that doesn’t honor life?  Yes, it’s necessary to have humane ways of converting God’s creatures to food for God’s people, and we are given dominion over the earth, including the animals.  I’m a carnivor,  not a nutjob rabid hostile vegan.  But there has to be a special place in Hell for people who take the route of convenience and self-serving self-centeredness rather than make an effort to do the right thing for our honored friends who give their all. 

    Why destroy beautiful creatures that other folks would so willingly love and support?  This is hateful despicable behavior.  God bless the people who ponied up (no pun intended) to save these dear ones.  Some may have had to dig deep to do so.  They are an example and an inspiration for the rest of us couch sitters.

    • Diastu46

      HH: Some of your now former friends are vegan or vegetarian and your characterization of them as “nutjob rabid hostile” is – - – well, nutjob rabid hostile in itself. diastu in tempe (horse owner, rescue worker, and vegetarian)

  • HappyHarriet

    This is completely and totally sickening.  …adding Donna Keen’s Remember Me Rescue to the list of people I am very happy to donate to, even if the amounts are limited by budget constraints. 

    What’s wrong with a country or a person that doesn’t honor life?  Yes, it’s necessary to have humane ways of converting God’s creatures to food for God’s people, and we are given dominion over the earth, including the animals.  I’m a carnivor,  not a nutjob rabid hostile vegan.  But there has to be a special place in Hell for people who take the route of convenience and self-serving self-centeredness rather than make an effort to do the right thing for our honored friends who give their all. 

    Why destroy beautiful creatures that other folks would so willingly love and support?  This is hateful despicable behavior.  God bless the people who ponied up (no pun intended) to save these dear ones.  Some may have had to dig deep to do so.  They are an example and an inspiration for the rest of us couch sitters.

  • Jazzman1

    If you can’t afford to take care of your horses, you shouldn’t own them in the first place.  If you are not part of the humane solution, you are part of the problem.

  • Llc

    I am taking care of the horses I still have, which is 21.  I quit breeding mares 5+ years ago because the horse market was dropping in value.  So I am trying to be a responsible horse owner.  My point is that it is easy to point a finger if you have never owned multiple horses.  IT IS NOT EASY to own and care for horses now.  And there will be more instances of horses going to the killers through auctions because of hard times.  I worry for rescue operations – they will be squeezed to no end to maintain the horses they have already rescued.  Maybe the people complaining about the Asmussens should open their wallets and donate to horse rescue operations.

  • Liz

    I am horse strapped right now – I have rescued four but I would love to have or take Endless Storm or Ethel is Best if they were offered.  I have outstanding refferences and will pay for the transport.  Their offspring would make good hunter prospects and would never see the shadow of a racetrack.

  • Liz

    I am horse strapped right now – I have rescued four but I would love to have or take Endless Storm or Ethel is Best if they were offered.  I have outstanding refferences and will pay for the transport.  Their offspring would make good hunter prospects and would never see the shadow of a racetrack.

  • Meyer1127

    K A respondse to Bloodlines.He didn’t know they sent to slaughter  there he goes there alot to buy ponies for his grand kids and I sent papers.I live right on the Mexican border I could have saved the $100 a head to send them to the Auction.Sent papers I guess so if someone did buy them they had them if not destroy the papers and put them on the other truck?

    • Deb Jones

      I’ve lost track of how many times I have heard this excuse from breeders who have dumped their broodmares at auctions all over the country. I shudder to think how many horses this family have consigned to this auction in the past that were slaughtered in Mexico. Registration papers mean nothing to kill buyers. Interestingly 3 of these mares were consigned without a current negative Coggins.

    • AngelaFromAbilene

      Ft. Worth, Talpa, Stephenville, Weatherford, Lubbock, etc. They are all “Killer Sales” in Texas.  And everyone in the horse business in Texas knows it.  Weekly, non-catalogue sales are “Killer Sales.”

  • Meyer1127

    K A respondse to Bloodlines.He didn’t know they sent to slaughter  there he goes there alot to buy ponies for his grand kids and I sent papers.I live right on the Mexican border I could have saved the $100 a head to send them to the Auction.Sent papers I guess so if someone did buy them they had them if not destroy the papers and put them on the other truck?

  • Nishchick2001

    How stupid  do these people think we are to believe this was his first dump-off of horses at this auction. Being in the race horse business he knows ALLL ABOUT kill buyers at auctions as he says hes right on the mexican boarder. DISGRACEFUL. I hope it ruins his name in the horse business!! Sick bastards!

  • Nishchick2001

    How stupid  do these people think we are to believe this was his first dump-off of horses at this auction. Being in the race horse business he knows ALLL ABOUT kill buyers at auctions as he says hes right on the mexican boarder. DISGRACEFUL. I hope it ruins his name in the horse business!! Sick bastards!

  • Guest

     Any person who sends a horse to be in the care of the Asmussen’s is obviously a supporter of horse slaughter.  Any good owner would pull their horse from the Asmussen Family immediately.

  • Nishchick2001

     And why in your sick mind do the options starvation or slaughter even become options to chose from for a horse. I hope to **** you dont own any animals.

  • snazzygirl

    I’ve been reading these comments, and many vile comments are being pointed at the Asmussens.  My question is – how many of the authors of these vile comments are actual horse owners?  Maybe some of you people should go to your local horse rescue operation and volunteer your services so you can see how difficult it is to take care of horses.  They eat, they poop (which needs to be cleaned up), they hurt themselves, they require expensive vet services, they need farriers, they can physically hurt you if you do not treat them with the idea of safety first, you need barns and corrals, etc.  All of these are expensive and time-consuming considerations in owning/caring for a horse.  Some posters are complaining about the ‘evil’ race trainers.  Some trainers are worse than others; some regard it strictly as a business as opposed to a philanthropic activity.  They, like everyone else, want to make a living doing something they like.  Does anybody want to start talking about the treatment of rodeo stock?  Bulls are seemingly mistreated – who’s going to complain about that?  What about all the cattle humans consume?  They have feelings too!  What about grayhounds?  So where does it stop?????

    • Beach Bum

       I for one try to put my money where my mouth is.  I don’t have space for horses but I give as much as I can to the rescues.  I did adopt a retired greyhound, and would love to adopt another, but right now we have 4 kids and 9 pets in the house, and a good many of the latter are cats, and it can be hard to find a cat-friendly greyhound.  Sadly, the one we had, Katie, we lost to osteosarcoma at the sickeningly premature age of 8.  On the whole, I dislike the way livestock are treated, and I eat as little of that as possible.  I believe that humans are omnivores and don’t do well as vegans.  Most of the time I try to be lacto-ovo, but find I still occasionally need the meat for protein and/or iron.  I haven’t been to the rodeo and probably wouldn’t like it if I did; but, I wouldn’t be unwilling to try it out. 

      I think most people’s issue here is what appears a lack of effort, on the part of the owner-trainer of these mares, to attempt re-homing them prior to sending them to an auction at which there are a lot of kill buyers.  It says in Ray’s original report that the rescuers outbid kill buyers for 9 of them, and the other mare went to a buyer without slaughter connections. 

      If any of the above is wrong, the Asmussens can write to Ray and communicate their side of the story. 

    • Rosiepaint

      I guess I’ll bite snazzygirl. I own horses. In fact, I breed horses. I’m well aware of the cost of everything that relates to owning horses. I also have several rescue horses among them 2 TB mares rescued from the horrible tragedy in Many, La, 2 Slew mares pulled from the kill sale in Savoy, TX, the resulting foal from one of those said mares, in addition to my broodmares and an odd broken down gelding or two. There have been times we’ve eaten peanut butter, but our horses have never gone without a meal (and a darn good meal at that). A kill sale is not an option for any horse on this place.  When the time comes, we will help them over the Bridge with as much dignity and compassion as we can.  Respectfully, Vicki Morgan, Cedar Hill Quarter Horses & Thoroughbreds

      • Lisa Wintermote

        Beautifully said!

      • Jazzman1

        You are truly a responsible and compassionate owner.  

    • Guest

       Since you brought up greyhounds, you do know that MA banned greyhound racing because so many dogs were killed after their racing careers?

      Plenty of folks voicing their concerns here know how to use a manure rake and work with horses.  The problems with rodeo – including horse tripping, where the  horses go to slaughter after if they aren’t hurt too bad to stand in the trailer on the long trip to Mexico – are known too. I share your concern about those horses too, but we’re talking about this story right now. 

  • snazzygirl

    I’ve been reading these comments, and many vile comments are being pointed at the Asmussens.  My question is – how many of the authors of these vile comments are actual horse owners?  Maybe some of you people should go to your local horse rescue operation and volunteer your services so you can see how difficult it is to take care of horses.  They eat, they poop (which needs to be cleaned up), they hurt themselves, they require expensive vet services, they need farriers, they can physically hurt you if you do not treat them with the idea of safety first, you need barns and corrals, etc.  All of these are expensive and time-consuming considerations in owning/caring for a horse.  Some posters are complaining about the ‘evil’ race trainers.  Some trainers are worse than others; some regard it strictly as a business as opposed to a philanthropic activity.  They, like everyone else, want to make a living doing something they like.  Does anybody want to start talking about the treatment of rodeo stock?  Bulls are seemingly mistreated – who’s going to complain about that?  What about all the cattle humans consume?  They have feelings too!  What about grayhounds?  So where does it stop?????

  • Beach Bum

     I for one try to put my money where my mouth is.  I don’t have space for horses but I give as much as I can to the rescues.  I did adopt a retired greyhound, and would love to adopt another, but right now we have 4 kids and 9 pets in the house, and a good many of the latter are cats, and it can be hard to find a cat-friendly greyhound.  Sadly, the one we had, Katie, we lost to osteosarcoma at the sickeningly premature age of 8.  On the whole, I dislike the way livestock are treated, and I eat as little of that as possible.  I believe that humans are omnivores and don’t do well as vegans.  Most of the time I try to be lacto-ovo, but find I still occasionally need the meat for protein and/or iron.  I haven’t been to the rodeo and probably wouldn’t like it if I did; but, I wouldn’t be unwilling to try it out. 

    I think most people’s issue here is what appears a lack of effort, on the part of the owner-trainer of these mares, to attempt re-homing them prior to sending them to an auction at which there are a lot of kill buyers.  It says in Ray’s original report that the rescuers outbid kill buyers for 9 of them, and the other mare went to a buyer without slaughter connections. 

    If any of the above is wrong, the Asmussens can write to Ray and communicate their side of the story. 

  • Susieq@callcollin.com

    Thank you for all that you guys do…I hope that all your tireless efforts pay off and that legislation makes changes due to the public outcry!…we need to hear more,see more and know more in order to make a difference!…sadly its only the squeaky wheel that gets the oil!….I can only hope that your organization and others like it will continue to expose these breeders so the general public becomes more educated and we as consumers will become more aggressive with asking questions about what kind of retirement plans they have in place for the livestock that are no longer able to continue to serve their greedy humans!…I honestly believe in my heart that if people understood the entire process of a breeding barn and how it should be run vs. how many of them are actually run that the public really would care enough to walk away from breeders that are not acting in a humane and responsible way!

  • Susieq@callcollin.com

    Thank you for all that you guys do…I hope that all your tireless efforts pay off and that legislation makes changes due to the public outcry!…we need to hear more,see more and know more in order to make a difference!…sadly its only the squeaky wheel that gets the oil!….I can only hope that your organization and others like it will continue to expose these breeders so the general public becomes more educated and we as consumers will become more aggressive with asking questions about what kind of retirement plans they have in place for the livestock that are no longer able to continue to serve their greedy humans!…I honestly believe in my heart that if people understood the entire process of a breeding barn and how it should be run vs. how many of them are actually run that the public really would care enough to walk away from breeders that are not acting in a humane and responsible way!

  • Anita Xanax

    How does retiring 10 mares from service and letting them love their lives out with love, respect and dignity equate to “starve(ing) in a dusty Texas field”?? Have you ever SEEN how well loved mares are retired? That statement is one of the more ridiculous ones i’ve seen on this thread…

  • Deb Jones

    I’ve lost track of how many times I have heard this excuse from breeders who have dumped their broodmares at auctions all over the country. I shudder to think how many horses this family have consigned to this auction in the past that were slaughtered in Mexico. Registration papers mean nothing to kill buyers. Interestingly 3 of these mares were consigned without a current negative Coggins.

  • http://twitter.com/Kerbrech Evelyn Waugh

    Extraordinary…intervention (again, thank heavens for Deborah Jones; don’t forget about her role in busting Kelly LeFever in the Pennsylvania horro story).

    And hats off to The Paulick Report for publishing this story.

    As for the Asmussens: Was there ever any reason to like them or hold them in high regard?

  • http://twitter.com/Kerbrech Evelyn Waugh

    Extraordinary…intervention (again, thank heavens for Deborah Jones; don’t forget about her role in busting Kelly LeFever in the Pennsylvania horro story).

    And hats off to The Paulick Report for publishing this story.

    As for the Asmussens: Was there ever any reason to like them or hold them in high regard?

  • George

    Where’s the citation to a valid, reputable new source?  This looks like a rumor to me.

  • George

    Where’s the citation to a valid, reputable new source?  This looks like a rumor to me.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1075607667 Susan Lehr

    Happy that Golden Eagle has stepped forward to do right by their mare.  As a horse owner myself, I would never, and I emphasize, NEVER sell a horse.  I’ve seen it happen all to often where someone sells their horse to a good home but a few years later, the second owner sells the horse to someone they believe will be a good home and so on until the horse ends up in a slaughter house.  A “Right of First Refusal” clause does nothing if the person in possession of the horse doesn’t follow through.  There was a story a couple years ago about a woman who claimed to run a horse rescue actually trolling the track backside for unwanted horses claiming they would be adopted out to good homes.  In reality, the woman was transporting these horses straight to the killer auction.  She was arrested and convicted.  I’m sure there are others out there doing the same.  Well-meaning people trying to find a good home for a horse in a short amount of time are easily victimized.  Owners need to take the time to investigate all potential buyers AND follow up on the whereabouts of any horses sold. 

  • Roseandjoesmith

    Clearly you are part of the problem. Perhaps you should consider another line of “work”

  • JEM

    Luxury of Time is coming home in 2 weeks to Golden Eagle Farm in CA to live out her life.  Thanks for Jen at Three Chimneys and Donna at the rescue we still get the chance to get her back.  Although its not always the case, for Luxury its a happy ending.  

  • JEM

    So much to say here, honestly I have sold riding horses and background checked the new buyers and still found out about grim outcomes.  We cant police the human race, sadly.  You say we shouldn’t ever sell, thats impossible and not just for equines.  people die, loose houses and jobs, this is life and reality.  I focus on the good, the amazing stories, phone calls, blue ribbon photos from the little girls and boys who end up with our retired horses and the successful racing stories of horses we sold like Evening Jewel who kept a man alive with cancer a year longer than doctors thought while she won over $1million.  They called me all the time with updates and we sent them baby photos of her and talked all the way through her retirement.  Please don’t condemn everyone for one bad situation that happened here.  Shame on them for not being responsible and making us all look bad.  I have not been with Golden Eagle the entire time they have been breeding but since I have I do my best to do the right thing which is also the wishes of Larry Mabee, the son of John C.  Luxury of Time is coming home in 2 weeks to retire on the farm in CA.  I will not continue to post here as i need to get back to focusing on her coming home, the rest of our horses and employees.  If you wish to follow Luxury’s return you can find Golden Eagle Farm on Facebook.  

  • JEM

    I was not and cant go back in time to fix that situation, very sorry to hear.  See my posted reply above to Susan Lehr.  Luxury of Time is coming home to us in a few weeks.  Don’t punish the past, bless the future.  

  • JEM

    Update from Golden Eagle Farm/Mabee:  Luxury of Time is coming home to us in CA in a few weeks once she is able to travel.  We are excited to get her home, nurse her healthy and watch her enjoy her well deserved retirement in green pastures.  If you wish to follow her return to GEF, find us on Facebook as we will post updates there as we do on our retired show horses, current racehorses and retired champions General Challenge & Dramatic Gold who are outside our office!  I image General Challenge will develop a crush on Luxury upon her arrival.  He loves the bay colored ladies.  Thank you to everyone for your concern, for Jen at Three Chimneys to tracking me down and Donna at Remember Me Rescue for helping us get Luxury of Time home!  We can only help if we are aware.  

    • Beach Bum

       Oh, God bless–I’m so glad this one had a happy ending.  :-) 

    • Anita Xanax

      A thousand thank yous for your noble graciousness and sense of responsibility!! Hopefully you will set the bar as high for other Cali owners and breeders regarding the fate of theirstock as you have been in improving the breeding of it. Bravo, Golden Eagle Farm!!

  • JEM

    Update from Golden Eagle Farm/Mabee:  Luxury of Time is coming home to us in CA in a few weeks once she is able to travel.  We are excited to get her home, nurse her healthy and watch her enjoy her well deserved retirement in green pastures.  If you wish to follow her return to GEF, find us on Facebook as we will post updates there as we do on our retired show horses, current racehorses and retired champions General Challenge & Dramatic Gold who are outside our office!  I image General Challenge will develop a crush on Luxury upon her arrival.  He loves the bay colored ladies.  Thank you to everyone for your concern, for Jen at Three Chimneys to tracking me down and Donna at Remember Me Rescue for helping us get Luxury of Time home!  We can only help if we are aware.  

  • Wendy Tulenko

    Absolutely wonderful! I looked her up because I always wanted a Slew mare in my field. Out of a SW/producer and she’s not that old. And she ended up at a kill auction? Had they offered her to me I’d have taken her. So glad she’s going home to you.

  • Transitions Thoroughbreds

    That is not quite what happened hadrian.  It was not her breeder that attempted to buy her back, it was her recent connections and they did send an international wire transfer to save her and she was temporarily safe.  An unfortunate turn of events, orchestrated by the individual who signed the kill sheet brought about the death of that mare.  The money was NOT refused by the recepient.  There was most certainly a web of lies including a falsified kill sheet.

  • JEM

    Maggi-
    We too have been dragged through the mud on this one and we had no idea until Monday about our old mare, Luxury of Time being apart of this and have been working with Donna since.  While we can’t save them all because we are not always notified, we try very hard to when we find out.  We always find riding homes, show homes etc for anything we have retired since I got involved.  This is a sad situation.  I have no idea why or how they got to where they did and I won’t speak for the Asmussen’s, its up to them to decide to reply to everyone to make a statement.  We should not be blamed because we once owned one of the horses or you used a trainer allegedly involved.  All we can do is sleep well at night that we do the right thing.  Luxury of Time is coming home to Golden Eagle in the next few weeks to retire.  I still love horse racing and horses in general.  There is always a rainbow somewhere. 
    Janine, Golden Eagle Farm

  • BOBW205

    WHAT DOES THIS SAY ABOUT ” INTIMINATOR” IF THEY JUST THROW AWAY MARES BRED TO HIM?
    NAUSEATING

  • BOBW205

    WHAT DOES THIS SAY ABOUT ” INTIMINATOR” IF THEY JUST THROW AWAY MARES BRED TO HIM?
    NAUSEATING

  • lindleypaxtonbarden

    Yes, snazzygirl, I DO own horses–RESCUED horses–and rescued steers, goats, donkeys, and pigs.  All abused/neglected/cast off by people who didn’t have enough sense not to buy something that they couldn’t or wouldn’t take care of!  I also volunteer with the local horse rescue and the county animal shelter, and I own retired track greyhounds.  And I don’t eat meat.  So I think that I am qualified to comment on this issue . . .
    The cost of horse/livestock ownership IS immense, and you have to be prepared for unexpected, expensive emergencies; but selling a horse to probable slaughter should not be an option.  Euthanasia is far more humane if the horse cannot be re-homed, and the cost is not prohibitive.  But expense was probably not a factor in the Asmussen’s decision to dump these horses at a kill-auction, as they are certainly not indigent.  At the very least it was a cold-hearted business decision to get the last bit out of these mares that they had already used up.  
    And of course, “They, like everyone else, want to make a living doing something they like.”  In my opinion, doing something you like (and making money at it) should not be done at the expense/ “on the back” of whatever is MAKING you the money!!

  • lindleypaxtonbarden

    Yes, snazzygirl, I DO own horses–RESCUED horses–and rescued steers, goats, donkeys, and pigs.  All abused/neglected/cast off by people who didn’t have enough sense not to buy something that they couldn’t or wouldn’t take care of!  I also volunteer with the local horse rescue and the county animal shelter, and I own retired track greyhounds.  And I don’t eat meat.  So I think that I am qualified to comment on this issue . . .
    The cost of horse/livestock ownership IS immense, and you have to be prepared for unexpected, expensive emergencies; but selling a horse to probable slaughter should not be an option.  Euthanasia is far more humane if the horse cannot be re-homed, and the cost is not prohibitive.  But expense was probably not a factor in the Asmussen’s decision to dump these horses at a kill-auction, as they are certainly not indigent.  At the very least it was a cold-hearted business decision to get the last bit out of these mares that they had already used up.  
    And of course, “They, like everyone else, want to make a living doing something they like.”  In my opinion, doing something you like (and making money at it) should not be done at the expense/ “on the back” of whatever is MAKING you the money!!

  • Dc

    Oh that certainly solves the problem every back yard breeder will jump at the chance to register their horses, just like every one jumps right up and tags their dogs.

  • In tears

    Oh God reading this article turned my insides to jello. I was so shaken. Assmussen sends out emails advertising reasonable hauling. I think everyone should cut him out of business. Impeckable bloodlines being wasted at a slaughter house, SHAME on breeders and buyers. As i always say the innocent and helpless animals pay the price over and over again.
    The rescue who saved these horses should be praised and supported.  I wish you all many years of good health and happiness

  • In tears

    Oh God reading this article turned my insides to jello. I was so shaken. Assmussen sends out emails advertising reasonable hauling. I think everyone should cut him out of business. Impeckable bloodlines being wasted at a slaughter house, SHAME on breeders and buyers. As i always say the innocent and helpless animals pay the price over and over again.
    The rescue who saved these horses should be praised and supported.  I wish you all many years of good health and happiness

  • Dc

    You people just can’t help your selves can you, you are just so determined to find the worst in racing that even when someone is stepping up to the plate doing something right, you just have to find something wrong, had to dig but you found something and even though it has nothing to do with today you have to get your digs in, you people ARE a big problem for the horses you are just too tunnel visioned to see it, you cause way more harm than good on a regular basis. I give kudos to some of the rescues like Remember Me Rescue, Pure Thoughts, LOPE and a few others but you people need to just donate to them and let them take care of the rest, and stay out of the way.

  • Convene

     The horses aren’t different; the consignors are. Because they know better.

  • Convene

     I would rather they simply euthanized them if there was no other solution. Better than the terror and horror of the kill pen and slaughterhouse.

  • Convene

     That we accept them up here is the shame of this country! I used to see the double-decker livestock trucks come thru customs when I was a trucker and it broke my heart. Some of ‘em still had the braids in their manes and tails! We in Canada have argued this for decades to no avail (yet). All the hoopla about “history” doesn’t seem to want to include the fact that wherever in history you find a footprint, you will find a hoofprint beside it. Guess you only count if you’re a human …

  • Convene

     Yup! I’ve seen it happen sometimes. It’s beyond despicable! Even if you’re so money-grubbing you want the sale price, why on earth would you refuse even MORE money just so you can have the poor creature slaughtered! As I said, beyond despicable.

  • Convene

     ”the whole industry makes no sense to me anymore”

    That might be one of the most sensible things I’ve heard in a long time. A lot of it doesn’t make sense to me either! However, in view of the way “throwaway people” seem to be increasing, I suppose we shouldn’t be surprised at throwaway horses. People need to remember we’re not dealing with things; we’re dealing with LIVES. I too would like to think Steve had no part in this; I never thought of him this way.

  • Jsheldon

    Not a surprise, the Asmussans run a factory farm. It’s all dollars and cents to them.
      They could have held on to these mares until the Oct. OBS sale and made a few dollars.
       They should stop breeding to their nickel stallions if they think the mares they jumped are worthless!

  • Jsheldon

    Not a surprise, the Asmussans run a factory farm. It’s all dollars and cents to them.
      They could have held on to these mares until the Oct. OBS sale and made a few dollars.
       They should stop breeding to their nickel stallions if they think the mares they jumped are worthless!

  • Rosiepaint

    I guess I’ll bite snazzygirl. I own horses. In fact, I breed horses. I’m well aware of the cost of everything that relates to owning horses. I also have several rescue horses among them 2 TB mares rescued from the horrible tragedy in Many, La, 2 Slew mares pulled from the kill sale in Savoy, TX, the resulting foal from one of those said mares, in addition to my broodmares and an odd broken down gelding or two. There have been times we’ve eaten peanut butter, but our horses have never gone without a meal (and a darn good meal at that). A kill sale is not an option for any horse on this place.  When the time comes, we will help them over the Bridge with as much dignity and compassion as we can.  Respectfully, Vicki Morgan, Cedar Hill Quarter Horses & Thoroughbreds

  • Clearlyambiguous

    Freespirit, sorry but  i  disbelieve u own horses  since horse owners would never  speak in this  manner.  for the sake of discussion, let’s say u do own a horse  and u call up ur  vet (without compunction, from ur post) to come in and euthenize.  this is  the anti-slaughter  mantera.  Yet there are lawsuits  in the human arena claiming euthenasia cruel and unusual under u.s. constitution.

    Bring AAEP into slaughter.  They will develop the most humane way.

    Humane transport is easy.  Just limit the number of passengers. 

  • Guest

    Solutions?

    First we have to get over playing the victim card.. “look at all the unwanted horses” and think about supply and demand, like other businesses. 

    “Unwanted horses” don’t just appear in the cabbage patch. Unlike feral cats, people choose to breed horses.

    The Asmussen mares were bred back into a bad  market. This is crazy from a business sense, and says the value of the mares always was  by the pound.
     

    80% of Americans in a 2012 poll – including horsemen – want
    the Federal government to stop horse slaughter. The American people have evolved beyond the 19th century agrarian
    view of the horse.

    That’s roughly 250,000,000 Americans who think what almost happened to
    the Asmussen mares is abhorrent.     
    That’s a lot of potential fans.

    Meanwhile people inside the sport complain mightily the sport needs new fans.

    You can’t make this stuff up.

    Anyway, solution? Stop breeding so many! 

    Remove the payoff for bad behavior. Yes, pass the Federal ban on slaughter.  Let supply and demand work.

    It’s not like TBs are legal for slaughter. Routine drugs like Bute and wormers – banned from food animals.

    Raise the JC registration fee. Set aside $$ into a retirement fund from all along the profit engine, for when the horse is no longer profitable. 

    Include the broodmares, for heavens sake.

    Hire Jack Bauer  & Co CPAs to audit the fund.

  • Beckie Irons

    Racing has nowhere near the glamour, public interests, or
    positive image that it did when I fell in love with it 35 years ago. While it
    may be legal to dump old broodmares or used-up racehorses at low-end auctions,
    the Asmussens have certainly given the PETA types that want to shut us down
    anyway another reason to say we only care about our horses when they are making
    a buck for us.

    Whatever your views on slaughter and selling off your older
    or unsound horses, we all have to realize that we are alienating potential fans
    and adding to our negative image with the animal-loving general public.

    I don’t know what your interest is in the industry, but I
    have been a small owner and breeder and worked for a number of prominent international-level
    breeding and racing operations for the past 35 years.  The industry I love is shrinking, farms are
    closing, racetracks are closing, attendance is down, sales other than the selected
    venues are down, RNAs at just about every sale are up, there is no long-term
    pretty picture that I can see.

    IMO we simply cannot afford to keep turning a blind eye to
    this stuff, it is killing our image and our bottom line. It is not in the
    industry’s long-term economic  interest to
    risk running off horse-loving potential new owners and breeders because of the
    growing public perception that we view animals as magnificent as these
    Thoroughbreds as a disposable item to be cast aside when they are no longer considered
    useful. You may rationalize and excuse, but the general public only sees dead
    and cast-off horses and the impression that nobody cares.

    BTW, I spoke with “the lady from CA” several times last fall
    when I was trying to find homes for two OTTBs that someone dumped in my neck of
    the woods. So far as I know she does not have a website, and she certainly won
    my respect and gave me quite an education during our conversations. Both horses
    found good homes, one a truly great home, through her efforts. What have you
    done lately to help find homes for any of these horses?

  • Lisa Wintermote

    Beautifully said!

  • Karen Worthington

    I had read the article in the Blood-Horse ( http://www.bloodhorse.com/horse-racing/articles/71203/asmussen-mares-now-at-remember-me-rescue ) before checking the Paulick Report; Mr. Asmussen comments there.

    While he states that he didn’t know there were Kill Buyers at the auction, I have to question his reasoning that there would be a market for his mares, in foal or not, as such a venue.

    I think he is either an ignorant fool, a liar, or both.

    • Karen Worthington

      Correction:  should read, “at such at venue.”

    • Barbara

      Keith Asmussen is nobody’s fool, although he may have underestimated his audience. Sounds like he taught the grandkids to horse trade at a young age, though;-)

    • Rosiepaint

      Round Mountain has been around for years. If you’re in the horse business in Texas you know about it. Mr. Asmussen has sent horses there in the past. If I were looking for a place to sell my TB mares, I wouldn’t be looking at a cow horse auction in Central Texas. As for sending the papers – he does not need the papers if he doesn’t have the mares anymore. Sorry, I do not buy his story. I think it’s damage control. He got caught plain and simple. I also think he underestimates the intelligence of the public.

      • TBLynn

         You are exactly correct. Asmussen knew damn good and well that there are kill buyers at Round Mountain. I have never seen a loose horse (which is how these mares ran through) go to a private buyer. They all go to kill for $50-$100 bucks. Now..if he thought his mares would be bought by a private buyer…he would have kept someone at the sale…hand walked each mare through the ring with a description and set a price for her over kill. If she doesn’t sell he takes her home. I see it done all the time for nice riding horses at this sale. He is a fool. These mares were dumped at the shelter with no one from the Asmussen barn in site when the sale began. I know this first hand.

        • TBLynn

           The Texas Thoroughbred Association has a Mixed Sale in the Fall that Asmussen could have taken his mares to in Dallas. He takes his horses in training to those sales so why not these poor mares. So sad..but the end was good.

          • Beach Bum

             We have absolutely no reason to doubt your word or what you’re saying here.  A good thing, I suppose, that these people weren’t raised by my father–”Be careful what you do, because when you *do* it, you also get to *OWN* it”…I don’t think denial on this score is going to wash.  :-/ 

      • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

        I agree that they are underestimating the intelligence of the public. People who have been in the horse business as long as they have KNOW who the local kill buyers are and are aware of these sales. It reminds me of O’Neil’s brother saying that he didn’t know what Milk shaking was and how he had to google it. No one buys any of it! 

    • Joe S.

      More likely he is not telling the truth. However, he must think people are stupid. He has been in the business long enough to know the mares were headed for slaughter. It would be a stroke of good fortune if even one mare went to a new home. Also one can bet he has done this before. When people are caught it usually is not the first. 

  • Karen Worthington

    I had read the article in the Blood-Horse ( http://www.bloodhorse.com/hors… ) before checking the Paulick Report; Mr. Asmussen comments there.

    While he states that he didn’t know there were Kill Buyers at the auction, I have to question his reasoning that there would be a market for his mares, in foal or not, as such a venue.

    I think he is either an ignorant fool, a liar, or both.

  • Karen Worthington

    Correction:  should read, “at such at venue.”

  • Saratoga

     I don’t believe you can expect people to start caring, Not sure, or to be more responsible if they’re OK sending horses to bad places knowing that horse slaughter is brutal.

    An owner who races at Saratoga told me he liked the convenience of calling the killer on a Sunday, and having an empty stall and a check from the abbattoir on Monday.

    At least he didn’t pretend phony surprise where the horse went.

    Passing the slaughter ban – and enforcing it  – is absolutely necessary to protect US horses.

    The kill dealers are  lowlifes and will lie to people about a good home and all that.

  • Guest

     Since you brought up greyhounds, you do know that MA banned greyhound racing because so many dogs were killed after their racing careers?

    Plenty of folks voicing their concerns here know how to use a manure rake and work with horses.  The problems with rodeo – including horse tripping, where the  horses go to slaughter after if they aren’t hurt too bad to stand in the trailer on the long trip to Mexico – are known too. I share your concern about those horses too, but we’re talking about this story right now. 

  • Freespirit

     As a matter of fact, I own 22 horses.  And I have euthanized several horses over the years when they were sick and there was no hope and it was necessary.  I have no idea why you even made that statement.  It is not my belief there is a humane way to get horses to the slaughter houses economically and humanely nor  do I believe they can be slaughtered humanely.  That’s my belief.

  • J. Leonard Neuman

    “Political correctness”
    is a government derived term, spun for the bureaucracy and used for exerting
    control. Nature’s way on the other hand is natural and is ministered
    by a far greater cause. Knowing the distinction,
    where does euthanasia fall?

  • Not Sure

    If they nail the owner and stop the horses from running what will stop that owner from making sure they send all to slaughter??

  • May Flower

    You mean humane end of life like vet assisted euthanasia or a well placed bullet? Tough to do with an 8 year old mare, huh? 

  • NY Owner

    Every time I read one of these stories I have more respect for the folks who “police” these sales and less for the owners and trainers who discard their animals but please do not lump all breeders in this category.  Most of the small breeders I know in the upstate NY area, myself included, take pride in following the careers of our horses and responsiblity for the ones that need safe, caring homes after their racing careers are over.  Unfortunately, the 30 or so retirees I have placed in the last 10 years don’t get any press for being trail horses or family pets.

  • May Flower

    Pathetic excuse. Slaughter and if not starved to death? What about nailing the bastards hard to prevent abuse in the first place? It is not because some/many starve horses that horses should be slaughtered! The abusers need to be punished not the horses.

  • May flower

    Slaughter is not answer, responsible ownership and breeding, and abuse prevention are key. A culture change is in order including at the AHC. 

  • May Flower

    No foal is born dangerous. Again, why should horses paid with an horrible end because they were abused and became unmanageable by bottom feeders?

  • Sevencentsstable

    Your numbers are strictly TB stats. The catastrophic death rate during racing is 2 per thousand, not 2 per hundred. So that is .2% or .0002, not .002 as you figured in. We have a lot of problems to fix, undeniably, but we don’t need to exagerate them ;-)

  • Jim

    Please tell me why the Asmussens should be banned from anything. What they did is no different than cattle farmers selling their cows at auction, knowing full well that the beef will end up on a plate somewhere…and their hides on your feet probably. 

    I can only guess you’re outraged because you have some intrinsic belief that horses are somehow different than the other livestock – cows, pigs, sheep, chickens, et al – that are slaughtered daily in the U.S. for human consumption. This distinction is ridiculous and without merit. Americans don’t eat horse meat, but citizens in dozens of other countries do. If the Asmussens choose to supply inventory to these markets it is entirely their right, and it does not make them any less humane than you or anybody else. It’s called free enterprise.

    If you can attest that you do not eat meat of any kind, nor wear leather or fur, than I will respect your position. I will disagree with it, but I will respect you for your consistency. Anything short of that reeks of hypocricy and a self-serving resignation to protect only those animals fortune enough to be born with manes and tails.

  • Jazzman1

    You are truly a responsible and compassionate owner.  

  • NorthStar326

    The sad part is they aren’t cheap on personality or abiltiy to give to humans.  I’m still looking to see what happened to Warren’s Lady Slew.

  • NorthStar326

    Since I spend my days surrounded by horses and the horse industry, I don’t need to look far to find the worst. In fact, it is painfully difficult to hide from it. BTW, I didn’t have to dig…it was something I came across quite by accident, when looking at horses and rescues to donate to. Also…though it is none of your business…my partner and I donate to Remember Me Rescue quite regularly and have for a while. I also hold my tongue much more than I speak because I’m too busy trying to help horses at the track and farms not end up like the horses in this article/thread were inches away from ending up. You know nothing of the rescue world and what those who do go thru daily. You are clearly one of those industry regulars who is quite adept at looking the other way and minding your own business…while a voiceless horse suffers.

  • Jazzman1

    Horse slaughter is not the answer.  It is cruel and inhumane.  I have been working tirelessly on this issue for 10+ years.  I have watched responsible compassionate rescuers step up and save these horses many many times.  It is disgusting to witness these uncaring greedy owners.  The rescuers try to right their wrong.  I’m glad they got caught.  They will think twice next time they nerd to “cull” their herd.  Maybe the Asmussens should open their wallets to help pay for these mares retirement.  You know, with them being such good upstanding people and all. 

  • Roisin

    I don’t know about you, but I have a different relationship with my horses and dogs than with cattle and pigs. Yes, other cultures consume horse flesh and dog flesh also. Maybe we should supply dog meat for export too and  cchalk it up to “free enterprise”. Your argument is old and tired.

  • Barbara

    Keith Asmussen is nobody’s fool, although he may have underestimated his audience. Sounds like he taught the grandkids to horse trade at a young age, though;-)

  • Beach Bum

     Oh, God bless–I’m so glad this one had a happy ending.  :-) 

  • Diastu46

    HH: Some of your now former friends are vegan or vegetarian and your characterization of them as “nutjob rabid hostile” is – - – well, nutjob rabid hostile in itself. diastu in tempe (horse owner, rescue worker, and vegetarian)

  • Ronnie

    It is really no different, an Asmussen horse or not. A horse is a horse is a horse…to slaughter.  But very importantly, here is a good example, the *message.  This is a prominent breeder, from a well-known, high-profile, multi-million $$$ family. Money made from horses.  Importantly, these were also “high-profile” mares. Any horse owner should be responsible at the end of their horse’s life, giving the gift of humane euthanasia by vet injection.  But to expose those who make millions from their horses and will not pay the $200+ for euthanasia/burial/cremation/rendering, is bringing horse slaughter more into the public’s awareness. And the GREED!  And not acknowledging a horse as a sentient being.  Just an “It.” A THING that is disposable.  Many still do know know horses go to slaughter.  In addition, those that DO know of slaughter, many do not know that ANY horse can go through the heinous horror of slaughter. How many racetrack goers are aware that the horses they see racing for their lives just might, within minutes, be off the track and onto the meat truck at the back track? Just one example of how and where horses are obtained for slaughter.    

  • Rosiepaint

    Round Mountain has been around for years. If you’re in the horse business in Texas you know about it. Mr. Asmussen has sent horses there in the past. If I were looking for a place to sell my TB mares, I wouldn’t be looking at a cow horse auction in Central Texas. As for sending the papers – he does not need the papers if he doesn’t have the mares anymore. Sorry, I do not buy his story. I think it’s damage control. He got caught plain and simple. I also think he underestimates the intelligence of the public.

  • Ronnie

    Dear Ajaapollo, With all respect, I presume you have bought and drank the Kool-Aid.  Horse slaughter is NOT a necessity.  With strength of character and desire to know more, i.e., educate, visit http://www.kaufmanzoning.net/  I thank you.

  • Wendy

    Very commendable move by Murrell. NOT a very responsible and upstanding move by Asmussen.

  • Wendy

    Very commendable move by Murrell. NOT a very responsible and upstanding move by Asmussen.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joanne-Pfeiffer/1347911205 Joanne Pfeiffer

    whaT happened to the 10th mare??? NVM….I see the answer!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Joanne-Pfeiffer/1347911205 Joanne Pfeiffer

    whaT happened to the 10th mare??? NVM….I see the answer!

  • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

    326 COMMENTS BREAKS THE BANK!!!…HANK…MAKES ME PROUD OF THE HORSE CROWD!!!…AMERCIANS DO HAVE A HEART!!!…ty…

  • http://Bellwether4u.com James Staples

    326 COMMENTS BREAKS THE BANK!!!…HANK…MAKES ME PROUD OF THE HORSE CROWD!!!…AMERCIANS DO HAVE A HEART!!!…ty…

  • Raytmmm55

    WOW, over three hundred posts with a lot of blah blah blah and not a single one providing a cause and corrective action to horse slaughter.

    Horses are slaughtered because grain and livestock prices are kept artificially high to provide only corporate income and profit. Families making $2.00 a day, cannot pay $2.00 for a cob of corn or $4.00 for a lb of beef. 

    Horses are slaughtered because the cost of keeping them is kept artificially high.

    Horses are slaughtered because feed companies are running unchecked and producing feed which will not sustain a horse and charging outrageous amounts for it in the name of profit.

    Horses are slaughtered because of overbreeding of pleasure, show and speciality breeds. Retired racehorses, service horses etc etc can fill the need of these people. 

    Horses are slaughtered because many of the small “rescues” are tax/donation scams, some of which don’t even own more than a PO Box and paypal account.

    I can go on and on but you people won’t listen, you don’t want to face the actual truth and certainly don’t want to end horse slaughter. If you did you wouldn’t be condeming one mans actions, rather focusing on the problems as a whole….

    • Jazzman1

      You are sadly ignorant. You contribute to the stupidity of the American people.

      • Raytmmm55

        Nice intelligent response. For someone who has been working against horse slaughter for 10 years you would think you would get it. What am I ignorant about???? Speak fool

        • Guest

           All of the things you raised above were an issues 3 months ago when the Assmussen’s decided to breed these mares yet again.   If they can’t afford to be in the business then get out.

          • Raytmmm55

            You all assume way too much. They didn’t send these mares to the slaughterhouse, they sent them to sell. It appears they were sold with J/C papers and information as to breeding etc…Not an action of dumping horses at a slaughter. Could they have been breed to make them more marketable???? Did they try to sell these mares prior to sending them to auction???  ETC ETC…..

          • Astra2555

            I think you need to reread the article; they were being sold to slaughter to feed the Mexicians..They might have been sold with papers but destination was a plate…

          • Raytmmm55

            It’s like talking to fish. Yes there are slaughter buyers in every small horse auction in the world. Yes slaughter buyers buy and send to slaughter. WAS THIS THE INTENT OF THE Assmussens????? IF SO, they could have sent them direct to the rendering facility which is 9 miles from their farm, for 50 cents a pound. By the way, why don’t you all have a problem with rendering, just slaughter for human consumption. More horses are rendered for animal feed (what do you think the big cats eat?), cosmetic products (yes ladies, some of those great creams contain animal fat etc), Medicine, Human supplements etc. I am an opponent to slaughter. I am pointing out thru all your BS not a freakin one of you will look at the problem as a whole, objectively, and offer any solution. Assume, bi&$ch and complain. They offered these horses fair at a public sale, who anyone could attend and buy. 

          • Beach Bum

             You can generalize and attempt to justify it and yourself all you want, but there are plenty of people writing on this thread(and site) that are not doing “nothing”. 

          • Guest

             Oh for heavens sake. We’re not talking about ladies makeup.

            We’re talking about the unintended or intended consequences of the Asmussens sending used up mares to an auction where slaughter dealers frequent, instead of providing them the dignified retirement they earned by producing 1-3 year depreciable assets all these years. 

            Slaughter – unlike rendering – requires the horse to be alive and bled out. Most wake up after multiple stuns to be dismembered while conscious and able to feel pain.

            Linking a family name with HOY connections to that is news.

            At best, the Asmussens failed to do due diligence; even a casual horse owner knows better.

            Of course they knew.

            Missing from their weak response was the farm’s position on horse slaughter.

          • Beach Bum

             What on God’s Earth do you think is going to happen if you send horses like this to an auction where there are a lot of kill buyers?!!  How about making an effort to sell them privately, or finding them homes in the *reputable* rescues?  I’d bet Mrs. Keen would have been happy to try placing them even before all this hoopla and 8/9 of the sales were Mr. Murrell and co. outbidding kill buyers…DUH… 

      • NorthStar326

        Thoroughly agree!

    • NorthStar326

      People focus on the problems and the solutions everyday.  It’s the whiners and the lazy that prevent solutions from being implemented.  And some family that only makes $2.00 a day ought to have spent more time in school and progressed thru life with a little more effort than living for the next drinking binge.

      • Raytmmm55

        WOW REALLY. Careful you don’t get a nosebleed sitting in your tower. In todays informed world how could you even be so ignorant. Take a walk thru the streets of your nearest inner city to get a taste. Not everyone in this WORLD has had the same opportunity as your royal highness. It’s people like you, who haven’t a clue making the slaughter situation worse and worse.

        Your sick of hearing about the increase in cost of feed. You must be really really rich. Not to worry, you won’t be long. 2009 Quality Feed and Hay for one horse was $2.75 a day. Today the same feed and hay is $9.10 a day. Sick of hearing it….IT IS A MAJOR PART OF WHY HORSES ARE SLAUGHTERED, if people in this world cannot afford beef, they have to go elsewhere. By the way, they also eat dogs and cats as well…..

    • Guest

       The corrective action to horse slaughter is to ban it. Let the free market do what it does best … adjust supply to meet demand.

      I think the majority of posters here want to ban horse slaughter. We can walk and chew gum at the same time; discuss one high profile situation and working to fix the problem across the board.

      Passing the slaughter ban – and enforcing it – will stop enabling the bottom feeders, horse thieves, unlicensed haulers endangering the driving public.

      One stroke of the President’s pen will stop the flow of who knows what into the food supply.

      I don’t think it makes sense to hinge banning HS on first fixing all the related issues – crop subsidies for ethanol – that drove acreage from feed to corn – high fuel costs, Genetically modified feeds, Federal tax subsidies,  etc etc. Nothing in history ever changed that way.

      Just pass the ban. We CAN do that. It’s like the old kid’s game duck duck goose; whoever’s still whining is a slaughterer with no qualms about putting banned drugs into the food supply.

      I wonder if the Asmussen mares got fertility drugs?

  • Raytmmm55

    WOW, over three hundred posts with a lot of blah blah blah and not a single one providing a cause and corrective action to horse slaughter.

    Horses are slaughtered because grain and livestock prices are kept artificially high to provide only corporate income and profit. Families making $2.00 a day, cannot pay $2.00 for a cob of corn or $4.00 for a lb of beef. 

    Horses are slaughtered because the cost of keeping them is kept artificially high.

    Horses are slaughtered because feed companies are running unchecked and producing feed which will not sustain a horse and charging outrageous amounts for it in the name of profit.

    Horses are slaughtered because of overbreeding of pleasure, show and speciality breeds. Retired racehorses, service horses etc etc can fill the need of these people. 

    Horses are slaughtered because many of the small “rescues” are tax/donation scams, some of which don’t even own more than a PO Box and paypal account.

    I can go on and on but you people won’t listen, you don’t want to face the actual truth and certainly don’t want to end horse slaughter. If you did you wouldn’t be condeming one mans actions, rather focusing on the problems as a whole….

  • TBLynn

     You are exactly correct. Asmussen knew damn good and well that there are kill buyers at Round Mountain. I have never seen a loose horse (which is how these mares ran through) go to a private buyer. They all go to kill for $50-$100 bucks. Now..if he thought his mares would be bought by a private buyer…he would have kept someone at the sale…hand walked each mare through the ring with a description and set a price for her over kill. If she doesn’t sell he takes her home. I see it done all the time for nice riding horses at this sale. He is a fool. These mares were dumped at the shelter with no one from the Asmussen barn in site when the sale began. I know this first hand.

  • TBLynn

     The Texas Thoroughbred Association has a Mixed Sale in the Fall that Asmussen could have taken his mares to in Dallas. He takes his horses in training to those sales so why not these poor mares. So sad..but the end was good.

  • Jazzman1

    You are sadly ignorant. You contribute to the stupidity of the American people.

  • Marsha S.

    While I applaud your candor and willingness to speak out I still believe facts should be attained before making accusations. Mr. Warren had been duped by an unscrupulous so called “buyer” on the mares that Mr. Warren ultimately spent a small fortune on to get back.  I have a few unsettled scores myself, but using social networks without all the facts is unsettling.

  • Raytmmm55

    Nice intelligent response. For someone who has been working against horse slaughter for 10 years you would think you would get it. What am I ignorant about???? Speak fool

  • Redwillow63

    Gail–Great job in what you relate in writing.  I have given the whole issue of the right to own and breed much thought.  As a former breeder and owner, I finally came to the conclusion that many people really shouldn’t be breeding horses and producing unwanted foals which end up as food on the table for some foreign country.  The whole issue of slaughter would not be so if the horses were treated in a strict humane way and certainly mares should not be sent in a in foal condition.  I am against equine slaughter and for getting the more irresponsible people out of the breeding business.  I have viewed on-line “shows” of guys breeding an in heat mare just for the sake of getting some kind of “high” off of it.  This is what the various videos looked to me and they call it “Breeding Horses”.  Clearly, there are too many unwanted horses around because of irresponsible people.  Then there are those people like you keyed about, that’s not too clear thinking and responsible either.

  • http://www.facebook.com/SaveStallions Mary Adkins-Matthews

    I agree that they are underestimating the intelligence of the public. People who have been in the horse business as long as they have KNOW who the local kill buyers are and are aware of these sales. It reminds me of O’Neil’s brother saying that he didn’t know what Milk shaking was and how he had to google it. No one buys any of it! 

  • Guest

     All of the things you raised above were an issues 3 months ago when the Assmussen’s decided to breed these mares yet again.   If they can’t afford to be in the business then get out.

  • Raytmmm55

    You all assume way too much. They didn’t send these mares to the slaughterhouse, they sent them to sell. It appears they were sold with J/C papers and information as to breeding etc…Not an action of dumping horses at a slaughter. Could they have been breed to make them more marketable???? Did they try to sell these mares prior to sending them to auction???  ETC ETC…..

  • Astra2555

    I think you need to reread the article; they were being sold to slaughter to feed the Mexicians..They might have been sold with papers but destination was a plate…

  • Raytmmm55

    It’s like talking to fish. Yes there are slaughter buyers in every small horse auction in the world. Yes slaughter buyers buy and send to slaughter. WAS THIS THE INTENT OF THE Assmussens????? IF SO, they could have sent them direct to the rendering facility which is 9 miles from their farm, for 50 cents a pound. By the way, why don’t you all have a problem with rendering, just slaughter for human consumption. More horses are rendered for animal feed (what do you think the big cats eat?), cosmetic products (yes ladies, some of those great creams contain animal fat etc), Medicine, Human supplements etc. I am an opponent to slaughter. I am pointing out thru all your BS not a freakin one of you will look at the problem as a whole, objectively, and offer any solution. Assume, bi&$ch and complain. They offered these horses fair at a public sale, who anyone could attend and buy. 

  • Roisin

    Well said ! The Thoroughbred industry is shameless. One need only look at how the trainers who habitually violate medication rules are given a slap on the wrist and then it is business as usual

  • Scsitters

    A friend emailed the Center and here was their response:You are wrong. Why would I send papers and haul 200 miles if I thought they were going to slaughter? I live on the Mexican Border. 
    Sincerely
    Keith Asmussen
    Asmussen Horse Center

  • Scsitters

    A friend emailed the Center and here was their response:You are wrong. Why would I send papers and haul 200 miles if I thought they were going to slaughter? I live on the Mexican Border. 
    Sincerely
    Keith Asmussen
    Asmussen Horse Center

  • Fdoos

    This is just a horrible horrible behavior on all levels.  I read where the owner stated his g/daughters have purchased horses from this place, and he had no idea about the slaughter/kill buyers.  Really, of course he knew exactly what he was doing-he just got caught.  So very disturbing.

  • Fdoos

    This is just a horrible horrible behavior on all levels.  I read where the owner stated his g/daughters have purchased horses from this place, and he had no idea about the slaughter/kill buyers.  Really, of course he knew exactly what he was doing-he just got caught.  So very disturbing.

  • T. Mclellan

    What I find utterly disturbing is the fact that ALL these mares were rebred, as I understand from the listing describing them.It’s not bad enough to send them for slaughter.  Why on earth did they breed them again, only to send them & their unborn to slaughter? I will never comprehend some ppls stupdity. I am at a total loss, at how some ppls minds work.

  • Meyer1127

    i have a wonderful idea.Seems like a lot of people are against slaughter of horses.If each of you that feel it should be banned and the transportion of them in the U S and out of our borders for slaughter should be banned.EMAIL the President of the United States in numbers.Single emails you and all you friends send thousands of them Not just a petition 1000′s of individual emails.They are looked at an answered even if the answer are dumb ones having nothing to do with 2012 issues od slaughter.
    Happy people translate to VOTES in election years and unhappy ones if you can get enough of them will get attention.We don’t need to tell each other how we feel we need to let the message get out loud and clear to the ones that can actually do something about it.

    • NorthStar326

      I guess you haven’t been reading about how our wonderful President is rounding up wild horse in droves and wants to cut the charity deduction.  Yeah…write away…I’m sure he really cares!

  • Meyer1127

    i have a wonderful idea.Seems like a lot of people are against slaughter of horses.If each of you that feel it should be banned and the transportion of them in the U S and out of our borders for slaughter should be banned.EMAIL the President of the United States in numbers.Single emails you and all you friends send thousands of them Not just a petition 1000′s of individual emails.They are looked at an answered even if the answer are dumb ones having nothing to do with 2012 issues od slaughter.
    Happy people translate to VOTES in election years and unhappy ones if you can get enough of them will get attention.We don’t need to tell each other how we feel we need to let the message get out loud and clear to the ones that can actually do something about it.

  • Guest

    Jim, you do know these mares would have received medications that make it against the law to sell them for human consumption?  

    Cattle etc have been raised and monitored as food animals; horses have been managed as companion and performance animals. Totally different drug list.

    We don’t name our cattle and give them retirement parties in the winner’s circle. To send a horse to slaughter after the hoopla of a racing career is like the Roman Coliseum… hopefully we’ve evolved a bit in the last couple thousand years.  I think we have; over 80% of Americans including horsemen now want Congress to stop horse slaughter.

    Back to the drugs — If one dose of BUTE in a horse’s lifetime is too dangerous to allow into the food supply, what kind of human being could dump mares that got fertility drugs – can cause miscarriage in women -  or butcher racers that got EPOs or off label performance enhancers like Dermophen?

    The illegality of common horse drugs – including Bute and wormers – in food animals is a settled matter. With that, US horse slaughter should be, too.

    What’s weird is as clear as the food safety laws are, you still hear people trying to justify horse slaughter with some cockamamie idea, as if giving people cancer is, I dunno, irrelevant.

  • zsuzsanna04

    Clearlyambiguous – there is absolutely no difference whatsoever.  Anyone who abandons a horse to an uncertain fate is reprehensible.  A sales slip does not come with an automatic ‘pass the buck’ stamp or a ‘get out of jail card’.  If you dump it, you’re an asshat.  End of story.

    If a breeder no longer wants a horse, they should grow a pair of cojones and put an honest bullet in it.  Hoping that the auction ring audience is filled with nice little girls waiting for their ‘dream horsie’ is horse-shi*t.  And it’s a fact that most educated, intelligent adults possess.

  • Jim

    I think you just made my point. You’re infusing a human element into your pro-horse argument that not everybody shares. Some people consider horses as livestock, not unlike cattle, pigs, et al. Because you don’t – you obviously treat yours as a pet – that doesn’t mean those that treat horses as livestock are inhumane. It’s an entirely different perception from yours but one that is shared by the majority of people in the world.

    Using your logic, the owners of a pot-bellied pig might think you’re ghastly because you eat bacon. Would you like to be held up for public ridicule by the National Pot-Bellied Pig Association because you like a ham sandwich every now and then? I think not…

  • Jim

    So sorry, Guest, I didn’t realize you were privy to the vet records of the subject mares. Even assuming they had been treated with medications, I would think the responsibility for ensuring the quality of the meat would fall on those that buy and process the meat, as opposed to the Asmussens.

    And you obviously don’t frequent 4-H competitions or state fairs: cattle are quite often named and celebrated, especially after winning a blue ribbon in some arbitrary competition. Thousands of these subsequently end up being slaughted for human consumption. And that’s different how?

  • Steve M

    The stats as I understand them are 2 TB deaths per 1,000 starts. Therefore if you have 100 horses that make 10 starts per year each then 2 horses would statistically breakdown. It’s confusing but that’s my take. This stat does not count morning breakdowns. Using rounded numbers for brevity.

  • Beach Bum

     What on God’s Earth do you think is going to happen if you send horses like this to an auction where there are a lot of kill buyers?!!  How about making an effort to sell them privately, or finding them homes in the *reputable* rescues?  I’d bet Mrs. Keen would have been happy to try placing them even before all this hoopla and 8/9 of the sales were Mr. Murrell and co. outbidding kill buyers…DUH… 

  • Beach Bum

     You can generalize and attempt to justify it and yourself all you want, but there are plenty of people writing on this thread(and site) that are not doing “nothing”. 

  • Beach Bum

     We have absolutely no reason to doubt your word or what you’re saying here.  A good thing, I suppose, that these people weren’t raised by my father–”Be careful what you do, because when you *do* it, you also get to *OWN* it”…I don’t think denial on this score is going to wash.  :-/ 

  • Beach Bum

     Yes, donating to Remember Me or helping to pay for the mares’ care until they are placed in homes would go a long way to redeeming this.  Uh, we’re listening… 

  • Beach Bum

     I am not a horsewoman but I would second this, as it’s what’s said in Texas, too.  I believe the cost of hay has doubled in the last 1-2 years; more informed Texans than me would have to comment.  I give to Remember Me whenever I can, and I wish I could give more.  If your rescue gets “in trouble” because of this, please put the word out and maybe people(along with me) would be willing to donate as they could, if donations would help.  And meanwhile, I pray for RAIN!!  :-) 

  • Yovankajojo

    why would you even  breed them back if you were going to send them to the killers,why not put them in regular horse sale like fasig tipton?just don’t get it,i’m “horse poor” because I won’t 
    ‘”give”my old geldings,or mares “to good homes”

    • NorthStar326

      No…you are horse “rich” and anyone who keeps their old horses to provide a safe life for them is also rich in character.

      • Joe S.

        AMEN TO THAT!!!

  • Yovankajojo

    why would you even  breed them back if you were going to send them to the killers,why not put them in regular horse sale like fasig tipton?just don’t get it,i’m “horse poor” because I won’t 
    ‘”give”my old geldings,or mares “to good homes”

  • Roisin

    Jim, you are just a gadfly. Your assumptions are way off the mark.

  • NorthStar326

    The public!  And good grief, if you are saying that an owner will send the horses to slaughter because they get caught and fined, etc., I guess that underscores how irresponsible and undeserving such people are.  As I said earlier, there will always be those that are so slimey, even the best laws are not enough, but most people would rather not risk tangling with the law or the public wrath.  That would be a big relief to the overburdened “rescue community”. 

  • AngelaFromAbilene

    Look up the gelding Cub Scout who ran in Ohio for a prominent owner/breeder/trainer.  Cub Scout bought and paid for their farm and when he was unable to run, they sent him to a killer sale.

  • AngelaFromAbilene

    Feeling the same here.

  • AngelaFromAbilene

    Yes, the price of hay has more than doubled in Texas.  A round bale of Coastal Bermuda used to run $50-$75.  Now, if you can even find it, it’s upwards of $150.  Our pastures are irrigated but with the price of farm diesel over $3 a gallon, even that is cost prohibititive. 

    On as side note: we are cutting hay next week and anything over what we must have for our cattle and horses, I would like to donate to Remember Me.  I don’t know if we’ll have much left after all the “rescues” we’ve taken in but it is my sincere hope.

  • AngelaFromAbilene

    Ft. Worth, Talpa, Stephenville, Weatherford, Lubbock, etc. They are all “Killer Sales” in Texas.  And everyone in the horse business in Texas knows it.  Weekly, non-catalogue sales are “Killer Sales.”

  • Hossracergp

    So….anyone who sells a TB must do so at a TB only auction house? Killer buyers are scavengers, they are at every small auction in the country buying what someone else won’t pay much for. People shouldn’t have to euthanize every broodmare in good condition simply because it is predetermined that if she goes through a the ring at somewhere other than FT, Keeneland, or OBS she will end up with the killer buyers. Since the papers went this these mares, someone breeding QH or Paints or Apps may have picked them up to cross them with their stallion or possibly use them as embryo transfer recipients. Outlawing slaughter is one thing, but telling people where they can sell their animals is too intrusive.

    • Jazzman1

      To a well known killer sale? B. S

    • Fourx4boy

      I was wondering, how much would it cost a farm to enter an aging broodmare in a TB only sale such as FT, Keeneland, or OBS to avoid smaller auctions?  In today’s economy and market, would that farm gain or lose money in doing so?  IF the cost is too high, it would not make sense for the farm to sell that type and age of horse at TB only sales.  And if this is the case, maybe those sales should consider allowing (for example) any TB over say, 12 years of age, a free entry and and only charge a small commission of the sale of an aging broodmare—-to encourage TB’s to go through TB only sales.  Just a thought. 

      • Fourx4boy

        Yes, I am replying to my own thought….To clarify, in my example, I am not saying that TB only sales/auctions have any ‘responsibilities’ toward unwanted horses.  They don’t.  I was just throwing out an idea that they could consider (only if they want to do it) on a temporary basis, while the market suffers, to maybe help in some fashion as long as it did not over-stress their business.  Then again, maybe it just wouldn’t work anyway.

    • horse

      Finally, an opinion which
      makes good sense. Consider what is done with the euthanized horse …. and at
      what cost? A 1,000 pound animal laying dead on the mat, that’s a logistics
      issue. Transport to dissect, package, bury, cremate, or leave the carcass somewhere
      “green” to revert to nature, what would you do?

      • NorthStar326

        That’s called the cost of being responsible.  Of course you don’t seem to think that is a “green” idea, obviously.

    • NorthStar326

      Oh yeah…that’s what we need…more QH and Paints.  Not enough of those going to killers, Mexcan rodeos or other wonderful futures! 

      • Hossracergp

        Even if I was suggesting that more horses should be bred, which I am not…..neither you nor I get to make that decision for someone else. 

        • NorthStar326

          Yes, you were suggesting that more horses should be bred in your comment above.  And yes someone clearly needs to make decisions for irresponsible people who cause innocent creatures to suffer because they can’t think beyond their egos.

          • Hossracergp

            Ok….where exactly did I suggest people should breed more horses? Please quote me, I’d like to see it. I provided a reason why people might be shopping at those types of auctions other than for purposes of slaughter.

      • Fourx4boy

        Quarter Horses and Paints are WONDERFUL horses! A horse is a horse. Thoroughbreds are no better or worse than any other.

        • NorthStar326

          The point was there are probably 5 x more QH and Paints, which equates to that many more QH and Paints going to slaughter, so REALLY, we don’t need anymore of those bred to squeeze one more foal out of a discarded Thoroughbred mare.  But yeah…why not add to the problem of overbreeding to solve the overbreeding problem.  Are you related to Obama or Pelosi?

          • Fourx4boy

            There’s one thing we can agree on….Obama and Pelosi—terrible!

    • NorthStar326

      There have been some rather notable occasions where some once very nice broodmare band culls have gone thru Keenland and out the back door.  I recall some of the breeders were called…I guess I won’t mention any names…and gee, they just couldn’t find it in their heart to help…they sold her long ago.  So, sending a barren and unmarketable mare to a quality auction does not solve the problem either.

  • Hossracergp

    So….anyone who sells a TB must do so at a TB only auction house? Killer buyers are scavengers, they are at every small auction in the country buying what someone else won’t pay much for. People shouldn’t have to euthanize every broodmare in good condition simply because it is predetermined that if she goes through a the ring at somewhere other than FT, Keeneland, or OBS she will end up with the killer buyers. Since the papers went this these mares, someone breeding QH or Paints or Apps may have picked them up to cross them with their stallion or possibly use them as embryo transfer recipients. Outlawing slaughter is one thing, but telling people where they can sell their animals is too intrusive.

  • Louwho52

    I am a thoroughbred horse owner with limited means.  I have a rescued tb gelding and two broodmares.  The cost of hay makes it almost impossible to make ends meet.  However, I would never consider sending them to the killers.  Those people have other resources and alot more money than I.  Kudos to all the individuals involved in the rescue.  Shame on the Asmussens.

  • Louwho52

    I am a thoroughbred horse owner with limited means.  I have a rescued tb gelding and two broodmares.  The cost of hay makes it almost impossible to make ends meet.  However, I would never consider sending them to the killers.  Those people have other resources and alot more money than I.  Kudos to all the individuals involved in the rescue.  Shame on the Asmussens.

  • FE Davidson

    Gail, Ray, et al.,  as of this time there are 362 posts and I’ve read all of them.  Not only is there a wide range of emotion exhibited (well justified), there are some very good points made with regard to the fixes to the deplorable conduct.  Perhaps it may be worthwhile for Ray and his crew to come up with a digest of the suggestions and use that as a stepping stone for further action.  At the very least, it may provide an opportunity for those in a quandry as to how to handle such a situation.  The input of the scores of posters on this site appears to be superior to the substance of what the industry groups generate.

    Great job Ray at providing the forum and a focus on the issues.

  • ziggypop

    Most of the “starving” that goes on is done by the “killer” industry itself. Too thin, ill, lame are either rejected at the border, or rejected by the slaughter house. It is the drivers of the killer trailers who dump these poor things into the desert to die. OR it is the nasty little tracks, trainers and owners who drop them off in the desert to die.

  • Jazzman1

    To a well known killer sale? B. S

  • Meyer1127

    Remember Me Rescue has updated the status of the mares and it seems like a few phone calls before the shipping could have taken care of dispersing the mares to places that wanted and cared about them.

    • NorthStar326

      One doesn’t have time to make such phone calls BEFORE the horses go thru the ring.  PERHAPS the Assmusens could have made those phone calls, including ones to the rescues?  Seems to me, THAT is where the whole thing started and where the responsibility and the blame most rightfully rests.

  • Meyer1127

    Remember Me Rescue has updated the status of the mares and it seems like a few phone calls before the shipping could have taken care of dispersing the mares to places that wanted and cared about them.

  • Fourx4boy

    I was wondering, how much would it cost a farm to enter an aging broodmare in a TB only sale such as FT, Keeneland, or OBS to avoid smaller auctions?  In today’s economy and market, would that farm gain or lose money in doing so?  IF the cost is too high, it would not make sense for the farm to sell that type and age of horse at TB only sales.  And if this is the case, maybe those sales should consider allowing (for example) any TB over say, 12 years of age, a free entry and and only charge a small commission of the sale of an aging broodmare—-to encourage TB’s to go through TB only sales.  Just a thought. 

  • Cynthia McGinnes

    Most good sales have a $1000 minimum bid, which covers entry fee and commission Most older barren mares, many younger mares without black type in the first dam,many in foal mares who have not produced stakes horses in their first few foals, many weanlings, will not receive this minimun bid, and will  pass out of the ring as RNA, and the seller will owe the sales company $1000 for the entry fee and 5% commission. Not a good way to get rid of unwanted mares or weanlings.

    • Fourx4boy

      So currently, good TB only sales are really not an option for a farm (making wise business choices) to send these types of TB’s to.  For sales, this leaves the smaller ones open in which KB’s attend throughout the country.  In exploring other possibilites out there (in trying to place these horses), another question I have is: There are many horse rescues out there…if they were to be called by a farm and asked to take in these types of horses, probably for a small cost to make the transaction legit and not considered ‘rescue’ (as farms are not into seeing their horses considered as ‘rescues’) who and how many would say ‘Yes’?

      • Cynthia McGinnes

        Unfortunately, virtually all of the rescues are full of racehorses from the track that can be trained to be riding horses. Old broodmares are not the best for riding. The hard facts are that there really is no place for mares that are not producing the kind of foals that buyers want. The costs of racing are such that it is not conducive for people in this economy to buy, raise and train young horses. Also, the uncertain tax situation has people concerned about what may happen to their disposable income. Just as the housing boom caused too many houses to be built, there were too many horses bred during the boom and now it is hard to find a place for them.It is hard to find a good solution.

        • Fourx4boy

          Cynthia, you have been very helpful!  So my current understanding is in relation to placement of old broodmares is: 1. TB only sales are not conducive to selling broodmares because of cost, leaving smaller sales still a possible option. 2. Rescues are full of younger racehorses that are more likely to be able to be retrained for other riding purposes – and there is no more room for ‘unusable’ horses such as broodmares—and rescues will not or can not take them. 3. Other farms are not interested in them either as the mares are not producing the kind of foals people want.  4. This one I am not sure I understand…the horses most in danger (the older broodmares) are older than the the economic or horse market downturn and any horse being bred now or even in the past few years (what many consider as overbreeding) are all still young.  How does this work? Does that mean that the horse boom you are refering to was back in the 1990′s? There still needs to be some level of breeding, buying, and selling or the horse market would crash, wouldn’t it?….New Topic….There are a lot of people that condemn the Asmussen’s, but I still have not heard any of them really express an interest in helping older broodmares in their predicament (minus the lucky 9) on a BROADER scale—-just condemnation.  Showing up at small sales, buying a few horses and condemning the seller of ‘dumping’ just doesn’t cut it. This really gets us nowhere in trying to find a solution for the other 99%…….As I am racking by brain here……There are many people out there who hate the idea of horses going to slaughter.  This, I believe, is the driving force behind all the emotion and condemation.  With all the effort put out there concerning rescuing from small sales for a couple horses here and there, what if, maybe, the emphasis was put on creating several LARGE sanctuaries/preserves for horse RETIREMENT (not meant to reuse, and NOT ‘rescues’) where the horses would live out their remaining days grazing in a pasture with shelter, etc.  Donations could be directed toward them, “$1.00 a day.”  Elementary school rooms could even “adopt” a horse with a name, a personality, and a monthly ‘report.’  Under no condemnation, farms could release those mares to a sanctuary with peace of mind. There could be one on each coast and a few in the middle states.  I have heard of ‘small’ versions of this, but I am refering to a total redirection of focus on a grand scale for all those who actively try to save a horse from the potential of going to slaughter. More horses would be saved. How about this???

          • Fourx4boy

            The large sanctuary idea isn’t just a thought for Cynthia (who has graciously replied to my questions, but it is also a suggested solution to help keep horses from heading to slaughter for the lady in the article, “Deborah Jones, a Southern Californian with a network of volunteers and sources throughout the United States who keep tabs on horses arriving at auctions frequented by kill buyers.”  Deborah (if you are reading the comments), if you have a large network and sources and they participate, wouldn’t you be able to pull this off? More horses could be saved because farms could ‘send to the sanctuary’ and not so much the sales.

          • NorthStar326

            Every horse rescue in this country tries to proved such an environment to a small percentage of horses.  If the money was there, and the generous people were there, do you honestly think the rescues would be packed full and desperate to meet their financial burdens as it is?

          • Fourx4boy

            Not putting rescues down by any means, but there is a HUGE difference between RESCUES who put a horse in a pasture and a RETIREMENT SANCTUARY who puts a horse in a pasture. Farms are not going to send their horses to a rescue just to be advertised as having a horse that needed ‘rescuing.’  They will choose a sale instead.  If, however, they had an option to send their horse to a RETIREMENT SANCTUARY without all the hoopla, then they are much more likely to do so—–and thousands of horses may never see the sales ring again!

          • NorthStar326

            If a breeder isn’t willing to be responsible and have the same character it tries to pretend it has to the “public”, that breeder gets zero sympathy from me (or most knowledgeable horseracing fans) when it gets slapped with “hoopla” for determining putting the older mares in a low end auction that sends them thru without a reserve, or “loose”, turns out a bit more public than they had “planned”. It’s really simple…put the innocent animail over one’s ego and “image” and guess what?  That image will come out looking a lot more classy and solid and the public will be applauding instead of booing. 

          • Fourx4boy

            So, the large farm’s options for the older mares has basically dwindled to one.  They can’t sell them at ANY sale, large or small, rescues are full and over-their-heads already to take in more, and the gov’t does not recognize non-viable horses in a business to keep them all.  What options DOES that leave. Is it “classy and solid” to have to kill your own horse because somebody else says that is the only acceptable means left?

        • NorthStar326

          Too many houses were built because the government forced banks to loosen lending standards so the government (mostly Democrats) could begin its main goal of redistributing the wealth of this country.  With horses, people who got money from their homes, as their home values shot up, brought many unprepared people into the market, and as usual, many uncaring, irresponsible breeders and breeders associations, allowed just about anybody to stand a stallion and any mare to be bred to that stallion.  The racing industry, just like our beloved President is good at selling cheap swamp land in Florida to dumb alligators!  And just like our government, the racing industry is more concerned with their own pocketbooks, rather than the living, breathing, breathtaking animals they encouraged people to bring into the world of smoke and mirrors.

    • Larry Ensor

      Personally I don’t think it is any sales companies responsibility to “get rid of” anyone’s unwanted horses. That being said the “upset’ price as it used to be referred to was always set higher then the prevailing slaughter market for decades. It had nothing to do with the cost of putting on the sale. Having been out of the auction side of the business since the advent of computers I can not comment on what the associated costs are now of compiling a catalogue along with the logistics and personal but I can tell you that in my day it barely covered the cost of providing a stall. The average entry fee now is $1,000 and in most sales there is no commission if the horse sells for less then $20,000.
      5% of 20,000 is $1,000. Seems perfectly fair to me. Putting on a horse auction is not cheap in all fairness. The average non horse auction house charges an entry fee, 10% purchaser fee, and 10% buyers fee. All they need is a stage, a stand to set the art work on and sell it of $10-150 million. Think about how many “pictures” can be stored/held in one stall and then do the math. No disrespect Mrs. McGinnis but this was a very unfair comment. It cost between $1,200 and $2,000 at most to provide good basic care for any horse if you have a couple of acres to keep them in. IMO if you are in the breeding/racing business you should be prepared to provide this when a mare/horse is no longer “productive” asset. I understand the capitalist why of looking at it but that doesn’t make it right in my book. To make it someone else’s responsibility just so you sleep well at night doesn’t sit right with me either. To each their own

      • Beach Bum

         BRAVO for that comment… 

      • Cynthia McGinnes

        I am so sorry, Larry, for the misunderstanding. I AGREE that it is not the sales companies problem to provide a way to dispose of these horses that have no obvious worth on the market, and I AGREE that it is the responsibility of the owner of the horse to find his or her own humane solution. I AGREE that the sales companies costs have probably increased exponentially, just as other costs have, and they also have to provide financial security for the sellers, as some buyers will default on payment no matter how carefully they are screened…situations change overnight, clients pass away, etc.

        I would also like to add, having just gone through a complete tax audit, that the IRS looks very unkindly on keeping retired horses in your business plan. I had to justify the business purpose of every horse on this farm, and was not allowed to deduct the costs of maintaining retired horses with the rest of the business expenses. In fact, the auditor felt that the fact that we were supporting retired mares might show that our farm was a hobby rather than a business…his exact words…”you don’t see dairy farms supporting retired dairy cows.” You say that it doesn’t cost much to keep a retired horse if you have an acre or two to keep them in. Well, big operations like the Asmussens might have to retire 8 mares a year…these mares might live another 10 years or more..pretty soon you are supporting 60 or 70 retired mares at a cost of over $150,000.

        I also would like to say that your estimate of $2000 a year to support a retired horse is very low. Blacksmith, routine vaccinations, and worming cost $500 a year, grain costs can be 50 cents a pound, and the old horses require the more expensive senior feed. In the winter, they need shelter and hay. Many older mares also have physical problems such as arthritis. These are not wild horses…they are TBs who have been pampered their whole lives. They cannot just be thrown out into a field and expected to be kept healthy and happy on pasture in all weathers.
        I would not sleep well at night if I passed this problem on to other people by selling a horse I owned into a situation that I could not control. I am sorry, Larry, that you would think that of me. I have my own solution that I was excoriated on this website for mentioning last year. Other people will have to find their solutions.

        Particularly in this economy, there are too many unwanted horses, dogs, cats. One way to help the situation would be to change the business climate so the economy can improve…a rising tide lifts all boats. We will know a lot more after the November elections.   

         

        • Fourx4boy

          Wow, you are by far among the most logical and helpful people within these near 400 comments!  So it also appears that if the IRS does not consider a business’s retired horses viable, that is a problem for a large farm (such as the Assmussen’s) as well to be able to keep every horse they own.

          I am going to attempt a question in which I may be scorned for in general, but I legitimately am wondering this…. Those who are against sending TB’s to sales because the horses might be purchased by a KB are NOT AGAINST euthanizing your own horse instead (because it is more humane).  Euthanizing 10 mares is like having 10,000 plus lbs of dead sitting around, hauled off, or whatever at a cumulative high cost.  It is a lot to deal with too.  Remember back in the day when there were traveling people who would come and render your animal for you for a fee or for some product? Often with pigs, cows, deer etc. Or the farmer knew on his own how to do it? Why not put the horses to one last good use if they are going to be euthanized anyway?  

        • Larry Ensor

          Cynthia, I hope my most recent post clarified what I was trying to say and was not meant to be directed at you personally. I believe I have come to your defense a time or two. Given the fact you use your real name and I know that you and your husband have been around for quite a few years and not just as “back yard breeders”. you have the experience, expertise and have put your money where you mouth is to make creditable and accurate statements.

          I find it most interesting and a bit unsettling that the IRS would disallow deducting the cost of keeping retired horses as a business expense. IMO this is something the Industry needs to address ASAP. Where’s the NTRA when we need them?

          In reference to the cost of keeping retired horses my I error for not stating OUR costs. The numbers stated are based on our cost at our farm in our area of the country, SE Pa.
          We make our living with horses and like any business I do an annual audit of costs associated with every aspect of running our farm. So I know these numbers to be real for our operation. Now, our feed cost are substantially lower then yours. We stopped buy the “named” brands of feed several years ago their price per 50 lbs more then double in the 5 years. The majority of our feed is bought from a family owned mill mixed to our specifications and comes in 100 lb bags. Example 12-10 sweet feed cost us around 5 cents per pound. All of our horses, at present 43 of various ages, mares, foals, horses in training, retired, etc. are feed using this mills feed. It is excellent feed. We are also able to keep our feed costs low because we grow and bale excellent hay. More then enough, in most years, to get through the winter and sell some. Our oldest retired mares are in their early 20’s live out pretty much 24-7 with other mares, barren or with foals. Yes, they show their age but look fabulous and are feed the same. Luckily they require little to no extra care at this time. They only come in on the most miserable of days otherwise they are just blanket when needed. None of our horses are ever pampered no matter what their value. They are treated like horses. There is no preference order on this farm per-se.

          • Larry Ensor

            typo;  feed cost should read 20.5 cents per lb

          • philp

            Wow 20.5 thats still expensive. I mix my own at the farm and got it down to 16. Hate to see what the commercial stuff in your area goes for. I tried the feed mill in my area, but found too much sawdust and sand mixed in, a common practice in smaller mills.

          • Larry Ensor

            I agree private mills can be a bit tricky. The best advertising is word of mouth and the good mills get plenty of that. We use more then 5 tons a month mixing it our self isn’t practical. We have more then enough to do as it is. But certainly would be for a large scale retirement farm where all they have to do is feed and provide basic care.
            Last time I checked the “quality name brands” were close to $17-18 per 50 lb bag and that is with a volume discount plus delivery. Depending on fat and protein and anything else we request from our mill the price is $18-21 per 100 lbs. In our case it would be a savings of more then $5,000 per year. But the additional labor costs, I got to pay myself something, plus the cost and up keep of the necessary infrastructure, equipment and possible spoilage don’t merit the exercise IMO.

          • philp

            Five years ago I was using 5+ tons per month as well. That was too much to try to do ourselves. Now I use about 2 tons, very doable. It takes about 2 hours a month, with the equipment I picked up on craigslist for a song. I prefer a high protein, low fat, low fiber diet here in FL. So my ingredients are simple. I just found a source in South Fl for beat pulp at $38 a ton. Now if I could do something with corn…..Thanks for the info

          • Fourx4boy

            Cynthia and Larry,  I just wanted to express my gratefulness for both of you sharing your expertise! Thank you!!!

        • Joe S.

          Over breeding is a very big and important part of this whole situation. In Thoroughbred racing the stars such as Blame and Uncle Moe, to name just two, win a few high profile races and then retire to the breeding shed where the owners hope to make a small fortune. Greed has a lot to do with it.
          The geldings and fillys/mares keep racing and racing through the claiming ranks and the downward spiral. Follow the careers of some of these claimers and you will see they are often race with just 6 days between starts which may not even be enough time to balance their electrolytes following IV Lasix. Who is looking out for the welfare of these track warriors…nobody, it seems.
          I’m afraid a rising tide lifting all boats can be a two edged sword because many more get in to the horse business than should and when there is a downturn there lots of unwanted horses. 

      • Fourx4boy

        What you are saying makes sense, however it does not really fit into the conversation.  Cynthia’s point is not asking TB only sales to ‘take responsibility’ of unwanted horses. In fact, those sales need to stay in business too and if they need 1000.00 entry fee and a commission to do so, then that is what they need to do. Nobody is saying any differently.  If however, a farm cannot realistically sell at those sales because a certain market is down (old broodmares), then why should the farm be asked to do so (by others within the comments) to avoid the smaller sales? Trying to find possible solutions here, not pass responsibilities…..on another note, many here are passing around the phrases ”not our (or their) responsibility” and “to each their own.”  Assmussen was already practicing ‘to each his own,” legally, whether we agree with him or not.  The moment other people attempt to take that away, those other people are not practicing it.  Can’t have the cake and eat it too.  In other words, if the same group of people (fighting to save TBs from KBs) refuse to take preventative steps to keep horses out of the KB sales in the first place because “it is not their responsibility,”  and then condemn those who (legally) choose to sell, that group has then chosen ‘to make it their responsibility’ by getting involved.  It is their passion that drives them and if they actively do one thing against an owner who sells, they lose the viability of their ”not our responsibility” and “to each their own” argument.  Is it not the purpose to help the horses?

    • NorthStar326

      They do NOT owe the mininuum bid.  If the seller buys the horse back (no sale or RNA)…the bid would go to them, so they don’t owe anyone that minimum bid amount.  They only owe the commission and entry fee.  The minimum $1,000 bid is to PREVENT slaughter buyers from buying them.  In any event, no sales or many RNA’s sale out the back door for much less than the minimum bid requirement.  The only way a seller can get stuck for a bid is if he is running up the bidding and gets stuck when the hammer falls.  In that case, he owes the auction the commission on the final sale price, unless he has a reserve on the horse. 

      • Fourx4boy

        Why repeat Cynthia’s point in this manner? The seller owes the entry fee and the commission.  Period. The minimum bid does not really matter in this case as to whether it is set to balance out the entry fee and commission or is set to prevent slaughter buyers from buying them.  If mares are either only selling for the minimum bid or they RNA’d (and the seller leaves the sale in the red), then the cost of entering the mare into the TB only sale in the first place is not the choice a farm should make or be asked to make (to keep them away from smaller sales).  So in trying to find solutions to helping older mares not find their way to a slaughter house, unfortunately, selling them through the larger TB only sales is not the answer. 

        • NorthStar326

           
          There are currently several rescues that specialize in older mares. Perhaps
          the big breeders should have a program, whereby they provide a retirement for
          their older mares, or at least plan ahead to find a rescue for them and be
          willing to sponsor them and endorse fundraising efforts for said rescues…Many
          have huge farms and it should be part of the cost of doing business….> But
          first and foremost, education and responsible owners/breeders would be the
          SOLUTION. Part of being a breeder is having at least a modicum of knowledge of
          the market value of both the foal and the mare….> You don’t breed an older
          mare with little to no catalogue page, or a page showing several barren
          years….> You find that mare a home, or show some class and character and
          provide a safe retirement for it….> I AM SICK TO DEATH OF HEARING PEOPLE
          COMPLAIN ABOUT THE COST TO FEED THESE HORSES. That was a CHOICE the
          owner/breeder undertook when they decided to get in the business. COST is not an
          excuse for failure to be honorable or have compassion….> I have no less
          than 5 mares, with 3 of them, for various reasons, didn’t make it to the races.
          Immediate family has black-type and track record setters. The two that raced had
          foals, who also couldn’t withstand training. Turns out they were late maturing
          and required a more patient approach to their training. (That is called
          “education” and research.) SOLUTION: Don’t breed the other “related” mares and
          don’t breed the foals of those mares UNTIL (if ever) the one or two that are in
          training, make it to the races and can earn back their keep. The others…graze
          on grass, get regular daily attention and we give up many “things” to enjoy the
          PEACE of knowing our horses are safe…..> A major part of
          the solution is changing the tax laws so they reflect the reallities of the
          performance industries, one of which is the horse industries provide a lot of
          jobs, however as a rule, they don’t provide a lot of profit for a responsible or
          high-character owner. So…perhaps the government shouldn’t be ENCOURAGING
          irresponsible, low-character behavior.

          • Rosiepaint

            The most notable retirement facility that comes to mind is Our Mims. If there are others I’m not aware of them, but am considering looking into providing a retirement facility for older mares, who in my opinion are the most at risk of a bad ending. I think a start would be for every state Thoroughbred association to set up some type of funding for TB aftercare using a small % from each entry fee or purse from each race or as a requirement for participation in state breeder rewards etc.

          • Hossracergp

            Yes…..Our Mims a Calumet bred mare who ended up where before she was saved? Isn’t it our duty to publicly rail against Calumet for allowing such a mare to fall through the cracks? 

          • Hossracergp

            So…..your broodmare band of five consists of three unraced mares and the two mares who did race produced foals who couldn’t stand training? And you are making judgement calls on what other people should breed? How many of your unraced mares are stakes producers? Isn’t the point of breeding to create stakes caliber horses not claimers? I think your practice invalidates your theory of responsible breeding.

          • Fourx4boy

            Sounds like, based on YOUR views, your 3 unraced mares and 2 poor producing mares should have been euthanized long ago… and certainly never used for breeding purposes again.

      • Cynthia McGinnes

        I believe if you read my post, I said that the seller will owe the sales company $1000 for the entry fee and the minimum commission. Since there was no bid, this amount must be paid to the sales company by the seller. I am not criticizing the sales company in any way, just stating a fact. I certainly did not say that the seller would owe the minimum bid…where did you see that…not in my words.

        • Fourx4boy

          Exactly!!

        • Larry Ensor

          My post was not very well written for clarity. It was late, just got home and this tread was still on my screen when checking emails. So to clarify before getting back on topic. Cynthia, in your post I replied to; “Most good sales have a $1000 minimum bid, which covers entry fee and commission”. I know you have been in the business a long time and know the game inside out. I know what you were trying to say but there are many out there who’s only source of information comes from what they read in forums such as these. IMO it is very important when posting ones comments they are clear and easily understandable. Unfortunately do to the complexity of the racehorse business I find this very difficult to do in a concise why so as not to be misinterpreted.
          So to clarify for educational purposes; The $1000 minimum bid has nothing to do with entry fees and commissions. It just means that any horse that steps in the ring will open with a minimum bid of $1,000. No bid under that will be taken. It states this on the entry form to inform sellers not to bother to enter a horse if they think it is not worth AT LEAST $1,000. This is to keep people from inundating an open, non selected, sale with cheap horses. Every sale generally a different upset price. It can be found in the front of the catalogue The sales companies are in business to make money, have a lot of over head. 5% of nothing is nothing. The ENTRY fee of $1,000 has nothing to do with the upset price, minimum bid. That is the cost of putting the horse in the sale. Whether it goes through the ring or is scratched. This covers the sales companies cost of putting on the sale AND their commission up to $20,000 of the hammer price and or RNA price. 5% of $20,000 is $1,000. If the horse is hammered down at $21,000 then the seller owes an additional $50 commission. If the seller RNA’s and or bids up the horse to $40,000 and buys it back then they owe $1,000 more, $2,000 in total to the sales company. The same if it is sold. This is generally true with most sales and sales companies these days. But different sales may have different terms and entry fees. If the seller uses a consignor they will also owe “day money” and minimum commission. Every consignor/agent has a different fee structure. In years past as I said in my previous post at the “lesser” sales conducted by the leading sales companies the upset price was set above KB price and the entry fee was much less. IMO this was done so the sale didn’t appear to look like a “New Holland” auction. The KB were still there and their trucks fully loaded with “no bid” horses leaving the sales grounds. These horses were sold after the fact by the owners not the sales company.
          Cynthia, my apologies if my post came off as directed at you. Also in my second to last sentence I was using the word “you” in the general sense not you directly.

  • Cynthia McGinnes

    Most good sales have a $1000 minimum bid, which covers entry fee and commission Most older barren mares, many younger mares without black type in the first dam,many in foal mares who have not produced stakes horses in their first few foals, many weanlings, will not receive this minimun bid, and will  pass out of the ring as RNA, and the seller will owe the sales company $1000 for the entry fee and 5% commission. Not a good way to get rid of unwanted mares or weanlings.

  • Fourx4boy

    So currently, good TB only sales are really not an option for a farm (making wise business choices) to send these types of TB’s to.  For sales, this leaves the smaller ones open in which KB’s attend throughout the country.  In exploring other possibilites out there (in trying to place these horses), another question I have is: There are many horse rescues out there…if they were to be called by a farm and asked to take in these types of horses, probably for a small cost to make the transaction legit and not considered ‘rescue’ (as farms are not into seeing their horses considered as ‘rescues’) who and how many would say ‘Yes’?

  • horse

    Finally, an opinion which
    makes good sense. Consider what is done with the euthanized horse …. and at
    what cost? A 1,000 pound animal laying dead on the mat, that’s a logistics
    issue. Transport to dissect, package, bury, cremate, or leave the carcass somewhere
    “green” to revert to nature, what would you do?

  • Cynthia McGinnes

    Unfortunately, virtually all of the rescues are full of racehorses from the track that can be trained to be riding horses. Old broodmares are not the best for riding. The hard facts are that there really is no place for mares that are not producing the kind of foals that buyers want. The costs of racing are such that it is not conducive for people in this economy to buy, raise and train young horses. Also, the uncertain tax situation has people concerned about what may happen to their disposable income. Just as the housing boom caused too many houses to be built, there were too many horses bred during the boom and now it is hard to find a place for them.It is hard to find a good solution.

  • Fourx4boy

    Cynthia, you have been very helpful!  So my current understanding is in relation to placement of old broodmares is: 1. TB only sales are not conducive to selling broodmares because of cost, leaving smaller sales still a possible option. 2. Rescues are full of younger racehorses that are more likely to be able to be retrained for other riding purposes – and there is no more room for ‘unusable’ horses such as broodmares—and rescues will not or can not take them. 3. Other farms are not interested in them either as the mares are not producing the kind of foals people want.  4. This one I am not sure I understand…the horses most in danger (the older broodmares) are older than the the economic or horse market downturn and any horse being bred now or even in the past few years (what many consider as overbreeding) are all still young.  How does this work? Does that mean that the horse boom you are refering to was back in the 1990′s? There still needs to be some level of breeding, buying, and selling or the horse market would crash, wouldn’t it?….New Topic….There are a lot of people that condemn the Asmussen’s, but I still have not heard any of them really express an interest in helping older broodmares in their predicament (minus the lucky 9) on a BROADER scale—-just condemnation.  Showing up at small sales, buying a few horses and condemning the seller of ‘dumping’ just doesn’t cut it. This really gets us nowhere in trying to find a solution for the other 99%…….As I am racking by brain here……There are many people out there who hate the idea of horses going to slaughter.  This, I believe, is the driving force behind all the emotion and condemation.  With all the effort put out there concerning rescuing from small sales for a couple horses here and there, what if, maybe, the emphasis was put on creating several LARGE sanctuaries/preserves for horse RETIREMENT (not meant to reuse, and NOT ‘rescues’) where the horses would live out their remaining days grazing in a pasture with shelter, etc.  Donations could be directed toward them, “$1.00 a day.”  Elementary school rooms could even “adopt” a horse with a name, a personality, and a monthly ‘report.’  Under no condemnation, farms could release those mares to a sanctuary with peace of mind. There could be one on each coast and a few in the middle states.  I have heard of ‘small’ versions of this, but I am refering to a total redirection of focus on a grand scale for all those who actively try to save a horse from the potential of going to slaughter. More horses would be saved. How about this???

  • Fourx4boy

    The large sanctuary idea isn’t just a thought for Cynthia (who has graciously replied to my questions, but it is also a suggested solution to help keep horses from heading to slaughter for the lady in the article, “Deborah Jones, a Southern Californian with a network of volunteers and sources throughout the United States who keep tabs on horses arriving at auctions frequented by kill buyers.”  Deborah (if you are reading the comments), if you have a large network and sources and they participate, wouldn’t you be able to pull this off? More horses could be saved because farms could ‘send to the sanctuary’ and not so much the sales.

  • Larry Ensor

    Personally I don’t think it is any sales companies responsibility to “get rid of” anyone’s unwanted horses. That being said the “upset’ price as it used to be referred to was always set higher then the prevailing slaughter market for decades. It had nothing to do with the cost of putting on the sale. Having been out of the auction side of the business since the advent of computers I can not comment on what the associated costs are now of compiling a catalogue along with the logistics and personal but I can tell you that in my day it barely covered the cost of providing a stall. The average entry fee now is $1,000 and in most sales there is no commission if the horse sells for less then $20,000.
    5% of 20,000 is $1,000. Seems perfectly fair to me. Putting on a horse auction is not cheap in all fairness. The average non horse auction house charges an entry fee, 10% purchaser fee, and 10% buyers fee. All they need is a stage, a stand to set the art work on and sell it of $10-150 million. Think about how many “pictures” can be stored/held in one stall and then do the math. No disrespect Mrs. McGinnis but this was a very unfair comment. It cost between $1,200 and $2,000 at most to provide good basic care for any horse if you have a couple of acres to keep them in. IMO if you are in the breeding/racing business you should be prepared to provide this when a mare/horse is no longer “productive” asset. I understand the capitalist why of looking at it but that doesn’t make it right in my book. To make it someone else’s responsibility just so you sleep well at night doesn’t sit right with me either. To each their own

  • Beach Bum

     BRAVO for that comment… 

  • s/s

    Want to know what happens to Warrens horses at Del Mar. Just ask his trainer. They make a right turn onto the freeway heading 20 miles to Mexico. They are gifted to various grooms. They are given to loving homes there that want a pet. They are not match raced or slaughtered for food. 

    • Anita Xanax

      Where do you think that right turn to Mexico takes them?? Match races and slaughter!!

  • s/s

    Want to know what happens to Warrens horses at Del Mar. Just ask his trainer. They make a right turn onto the freeway heading 20 miles to Mexico. They are gifted to various grooms. They are given to loving homes there that want a pet. They are not match raced or slaughtered for food. 

  • NorthStar326

    They do NOT owe the mininuum bid.  If the seller buys the horse back (no sale or RNA)…the bid would go to them, so they don’t owe anyone that minimum bid amount.  They only owe the commission and entry fee.  The minimum $1,000 bid is to PREVENT slaughter buyers from buying them.  In any event, no sales or many RNA’s sale out the back door for much less than the minimum bid requirement.  The only way a seller can get stuck for a bid is if he is running up the bidding and gets stuck when the hammer falls.  In that case, he owes the auction the commission on the final sale price, unless he has a reserve on the horse. 

  • NorthStar326

    Too many houses were built because the government forced banks to loosen lending standards so the government (mostly Democrats) could begin its main goal of redistributing the wealth of this country.  With horses, people who got money from their homes, as their home values shot up, brought many unprepared people into the market, and as usual, many uncaring, irresponsible breeders and breeders associations, allowed just about anybody to stand a stallion and any mare to be bred to that stallion.  The racing industry, just like our beloved President is good at selling cheap swamp land in Florida to dumb alligators!  And just like our government, the racing industry is more concerned with their own pocketbooks, rather than the living, breathing, breathtaking animals they encouraged people to bring into the world of smoke and mirrors.

  • NorthStar326

    Every horse rescue in this country tries to proved such an environment to a small percentage of horses.  If the money was there, and the generous people were there, do you honestly think the rescues would be packed full and desperate to meet their financial burdens as it is?

  • NorthStar326

    One doesn’t have time to make such phone calls BEFORE the horses go thru the ring.  PERHAPS the Assmusens could have made those phone calls, including ones to the rescues?  Seems to me, THAT is where the whole thing started and where the responsibility and the blame most rightfully rests.

  • NorthStar326

    Oh yeah…that’s what we need…more QH and Paints.  Not enough of those going to killers, Mexcan rodeos or other wonderful futures! 

  • NorthStar326

    That’s called the cost of being responsible.  Of course you don’t seem to think that is a “green” idea, obviously.

  • NorthStar326

    People focus on the problems and the solutions everyday.  It’s the whiners and the lazy that prevent solutions from being implemented.  And some family that only makes $2.00 a day ought to have spent more time in school and progressed thru life with a little more effort than living for the next drinking binge.

  • NorthStar326

    Thoroughly agree!

  • NorthStar326

    No…you are horse “rich” and anyone who keeps their old horses to provide a safe life for them is also rich in character.

  • NorthStar326

    I guess you haven’t been reading about how our wonderful President is rounding up wild horse in droves and wants to cut the charity deduction.  Yeah…write away…I’m sure he really cares!

  • AngelaFromAbilene

    Not just TB’s.  QH’s, Arabians, Paints, Appaloosa’s and mules all run on tracks in the US.  All are lip tatooed.  Any licensed owner or trainer can take the tatoo # to the Racing Secretary at their track and have the animals form run.

  • Fourx4boy

    Why repeat Cynthia’s point in this manner? The seller owes the entry fee and the commission.  Period. The minimum bid does not really matter in this case as to whether it is set to balance out the entry fee and commission or is set to prevent slaughter buyers from buying them.  If mares are either only selling for the minimum bid or they RNA’d (and the seller leaves the sale in the red), then the cost of entering the mare into the TB only sale in the first place is not the choice a farm should make or be asked to make (to keep them away from smaller sales).  So in trying to find solutions to helping older mares not find their way to a slaughter house, unfortunately, selling them through the larger TB only sales is not the answer. 

  • Cynthia McGinnes

    I am so sorry, Larry, for the misunderstanding. I AGREE that it is not the sales companies problem to provide a way to dispose of these horses that have no obvious worth on the market, and I AGREE that it is the responsibility of the owner of the horse to find his or her own humane solution. I AGREE that the sales companies costs have probably increased exponentially, just as other costs have, and they also have to provide financial security for the sellers, as some buyers will default on payment no matter how carefully they are screened…situations change overnight, clients pass away, etc.

    I would also like to add, having just gone through a complete tax audit, that the IRS looks very unkindly on keeping retired horses in your business plan. I had to justify the business purpose of every horse on this farm, and was not allowed to deduct the costs of maintaining retired horses with the rest of the business expenses. In fact, the auditor felt that the fact that we were supporting retired mares might show that our farm was a hobby rather than a business…his exact words…”you don’t see dairy farms supporting retired dairy cows.” You say that it doesn’t cost much to keep a retired horse if you have an acre or two to keep them in. Well, big operations like the Asmussens might have to retire 8 mares a year…these mares might live another 10 years or more..pretty soon you are supporting 60 or 70 retired mares at a cost of over $150,000.

    I also would like to say that your estimate of $2000 a year to support a retired horse is very low. Blacksmith, routine vaccinations, and worming cost $500 a year, grain costs can be 50 cents a pound, and the old horses require the more expensive senior feed. In the winter, they need shelter and hay. Many older mares also have physical problems such as arthritis. These are not wild horses…they are TBs who have been pampered their whole lives. They cannot just be thrown out into a field and expected to be kept healthy and happy on pasture in all weathers.
    I would not sleep well at night if I passed this problem on to other people by selling a horse I owned into a situation that I could not control. I am sorry, Larry, that you would think that of me. I have my own solution that I was excoriated on this website for mentioning last year. Other people will have to find their solutions.

    Particularly in this economy, there are too many unwanted horses, dogs, cats. One way to help the situation would be to change the business climate so the economy can improve…a rising tide lifts all boats. We will know a lot more after the November elections.   

     

  • Anita Xanax

    HA!! John Henry and Kelso both were. I knew John Henry’s yearling groom and he said the horse had already mauled a groom by the time he was 8 months old. If they hadn’t gelded those two they never would have raced, too vicious.

  • Cynthia McGinnes

    I believe if you read my post, I said that the seller will owe the sales company $1000 for the entry fee and the minimum commission. Since there was no bid, this amount must be paid to the sales company by the seller. I am not criticizing the sales company in any way, just stating a fact. I certainly did not say that the seller would owe the minimum bid…where did you see that…not in my words.

  • Fourx4boy

    What you are saying makes sense, however it does not really fit into the conversation.  Cynthia’s point is not asking TB only sales to ‘take responsibility’ of unwanted horses. In fact, those sales need to stay in business too and if they need 1000.00 entry fee and a commission to do so, then that is what they need to do. Nobody is saying any differently.  If however, a farm cannot realistically sell at those sales because a certain market is down (old broodmares), then why should the farm be asked to do so (by others within the comments) to avoid the smaller sales? Trying to find possible solutions here, not pass responsibilities…..on another note, many here are passing around the phrases ”not our (or their) responsibility” and “to each their own.”  Assmussen was already practicing ‘to each his own,” legally, whether we agree with him or not.  The moment other people attempt to take that away, those other people are not practicing it.  Can’t have the cake and eat it too.  In other words, if the same group of people (fighting to save TBs from KBs) refuse to take preventative steps to keep horses out of the KB sales in the first place because “it is not their responsibility,”  and then condemn those who (legally) choose to sell, that group has then chosen ‘to make it their responsibility’ by getting involved.  It is their passion that drives them and if they actively do one thing against an owner who sells, they lose the viability of their ”not our responsibility” and “to each their own” argument.  Is it not the purpose to help the horses?

  • Lisa Wintermote

    I agree Anita. BC Turf winner Bucks Boy was gelded for that reason and I have a 12 yr old Paint that is the same way. I bought him at 10 mos and he had already broken a mans collar bone when he savaged him in the stall. I know the people I bought him from and had been around him from birth. He was never abused in any way, nor was Bucks Boy.

  • Fourx4boy

    Not putting rescues down by any means, but there is a HUGE difference between RESCUES who put a horse in a pasture and a RETIREMENT SANCTUARY who puts a horse in a pasture. Farms are not going to send their horses to a rescue just to be advertised as having a horse that needed ‘rescuing.’  They will choose a sale instead.  If, however, they had an option to send their horse to a RETIREMENT SANCTUARY without all the hoopla, then they are much more likely to do so—–and thousands of horses may never see the sales ring again!

  • Anita Xanax

    As well you should!! Were all owners and breeders as gracious and responsible as you two are. You get what you put in, and people get what they deserve.

  • Fourx4boy

    Exactly!!

  • Fourx4boy

    Wow, you are by far among the most logical and helpful people within these near 400 comments!  So it also appears that if the IRS does not consider a business’s retired horses viable, that is a problem for a large farm (such as the Assmussen’s) as well to be able to keep every horse they own.

    I am going to attempt a question in which I may be scorned for in general, but I legitimately am wondering this…. Those who are against sending TB’s to sales because the horses might be purchased by a KB are NOT AGAINST euthanizing your own horse instead (because it is more humane).  Euthanizing 10 mares is like having 10,000 plus lbs of dead sitting around, hauled off, or whatever at a cumulative high cost.  It is a lot to deal with too.  Remember back in the day when there were traveling people who would come and render your animal for you for a fee or for some product? Often with pigs, cows, deer etc. Or the farmer knew on his own how to do it? Why not put the horses to one last good use if they are going to be euthanized anyway?  

  • NorthStar326

     
    There are currently several rescues that specialize in older mares. Perhaps
    the big breeders should have a program, whereby they provide a retirement for
    their older mares, or at least plan ahead to find a rescue for them and be
    willing to sponsor them and endorse fundraising efforts for said rescues…Many
    have huge farms and it should be part of the cost of doing business….> But
    first and foremost, education and responsible owners/breeders would be the
    SOLUTION. Part of being a breeder is having at least a modicum of knowledge of
    the market value of both the foal and the mare….> You don’t breed an older
    mare with little to no catalogue page, or a page showing several barren
    years….> You find that mare a home, or show some class and character and
    provide a safe retirement for it….> I AM SICK TO DEATH OF HEARING PEOPLE
    COMPLAIN ABOUT THE COST TO FEED THESE HORSES. That was a CHOICE the
    owner/breeder undertook when they decided to get in the business. COST is not an
    excuse for failure to be honorable or have compassion….> I have no less
    than 5 mares, with 3 of them, for various reasons, didn’t make it to the races.
    Immediate family has black-type and track record setters. The two that raced had
    foals, who also couldn’t withstand training. Turns out they were late maturing
    and required a more patient approach to their training. (That is called
    “education” and research.) SOLUTION: Don’t breed the other “related” mares and
    don’t breed the foals of those mares UNTIL (if ever) the one or two that are in
    training, make it to the races and can earn back their keep. The others…graze
    on grass, get regular daily attention and we give up many “things” to enjoy the
    PEACE of knowing our horses are safe…..> A major part of
    the solution is changing the tax laws so they reflect the reallities of the
    performance industries, one of which is the horse industries provide a lot of
    jobs, however as a rule, they don’t provide a lot of profit for a responsible or
    high-character owner. So…perhaps the government shouldn’t be ENCOURAGING
    irresponsible, low-character behavior.

  • NorthStar326

    If a breeder isn’t willing to be responsible and have the same character it tries to pretend it has to the “public”, that breeder gets zero sympathy from me (or most knowledgeable horseracing fans) when it gets slapped with “hoopla” for determining putting the older mares in a low end auction that sends them thru without a reserve, or “loose”, turns out a bit more public than they had “planned”. It’s really simple…put the innocent animail over one’s ego and “image” and guess what?  That image will come out looking a lot more classy and solid and the public will be applauding instead of booing. 

  • Rosiepaint

    The most notable retirement facility that comes to mind is Our Mims. If there are others I’m not aware of them, but am considering looking into providing a retirement facility for older mares, who in my opinion are the most at risk of a bad ending. I think a start would be for every state Thoroughbred association to set up some type of funding for TB aftercare using a small % from each entry fee or purse from each race or as a requirement for participation in state breeder rewards etc.

  • Anita Xanax

    Where do you think that right turn to Mexico takes them?? Match races and slaughter!!

  • Larry Ensor

    My post was not very well written for clarity. It was late, just got home and this tread was still on my screen when checking emails. So to clarify before getting back on topic. Cynthia, in your post I replied to; “Most good sales have a $1000 minimum bid, which covers entry fee and commission”. I know you have been in the business a long time and know the game inside out. I know what you were trying to say but there are many out there who’s only source of information comes from what they read in forums such as these. IMO it is very important when posting ones comments they are clear and easily understandable. Unfortunately do to the complexity of the racehorse business I find this very difficult to do in a concise why so as not to be misinterpreted.
    So to clarify for educational purposes; The $1000 minimum bid has nothing to do with entry fees and commissions. It just means that any horse that steps in the ring will open with a minimum bid of $1,000. No bid under that will be taken. It states this on the entry form to inform sellers not to bother to enter a horse if they think it is not worth AT LEAST $1,000. This is to keep people from inundating an open, non selected, sale with cheap horses. Every sale generally a different upset price. It can be found in the front of the catalogue The sales companies are in business to make money, have a lot of over head. 5% of nothing is nothing. The ENTRY fee of $1,000 has nothing to do with the upset price, minimum bid. That is the cost of putting the horse in the sale. Whether it goes through the ring or is scratched. This covers the sales companies cost of putting on the sale AND their commission up to $20,000 of the hammer price and or RNA price. 5% of $20,000 is $1,000. If the horse is hammered down at $21,000 then the seller owes an additional $50 commission. If the seller RNA’s and or bids up the horse to $40,000 and buys it back then they owe $1,000 more, $2,000 in total to the sales company. The same if it is sold. This is generally true with most sales and sales companies these days. But different sales may have different terms and entry fees. If the seller uses a consignor they will also owe “day money” and minimum commission. Every consignor/agent has a different fee structure. In years past as I said in my previous post at the “lesser” sales conducted by the leading sales companies the upset price was set above KB price and the entry fee was much less. IMO this was done so the sale didn’t appear to look like a “New Holland” auction. The KB were still there and their trucks fully loaded with “no bid” horses leaving the sales grounds. These horses were sold after the fact by the owners not the sales company.
    Cynthia, my apologies if my post came off as directed at you. Also in my second to last sentence I was using the word “you” in the general sense not you directly.

  • Roisin

    I agree, one does not have to look far to find the worst. People who complain about those who try to do something about the abuse and neglect of horses ARE a huge part of the proplem, not the other way around. I currently have 7 Thouroughbreds that I have taken under my wing. They came from the claiming game and had nowhere to go.

  • Brendaw

    I know I am late to the party but here is my two cents.
    I have attended these small sales for 45 plus years. TB’s are minority of horses which go thru. Mostly backyard horses. Right now the hot horse for slaughter is the mini horses. Yield is high and you can pick them up for 5-10 cents a pound. Usually when a TB owner sends the horse to auction for the purpose of slaughter, no paperwork is sent, the coggins has a made up name, and the tattoo is modified so that it can’t be read. These horses were not sent to slaughter but to sell. Kill buyers attend every auction and travel farm to farm and vet to vet gathering. Many have classified ads you can look up. They are easy to spot.

    Nobody wants to eat horse. It’s tough, doesn’t taste good, hard to cook and preserve. Many of the poorer areas of the world have no other choice. You want to end 90% of all horse slaughter, feed these people. Corporations and governments have artificially increased the price of food stuff in the name of profit. Look at corn, US silos are full, crops will yield 80% even with the drought, and we import 99% of the corn used in the US. Using corn in fuel doesn’t help the enviroment one bit, only corporate profit. If every horse owner who wants to end horse slaughter would raise 3 head of cattle each year and flood the market, it would bring the cost of beef down to where it would replace horse meat. Take away the need……

    • Joe S.

      Since when  are France, Belgium and Japan poor countries ??? I find it hard to believe you do not know horse meat is heavily consumed in these countries. As a matter of fact, Belgium was heavily invested in at least one horse slaughter house in Texas or Illinois before they closed several years ago. The Wall Street Journal did some articles on this several years ago and did another article titled ”Te Other Red Meat”around the time of the scare surrounding the bovine spongeform encephalitis epidemic or mad cow disease. 
      Further, horse slaughter goes on in Florida and there is  

      • Raytmmm55

        Horse meat is eaten in every country in the world. The countries you mentioned serve horse as a rare gourmet dish. Usually foals are used and a single serving can cost as much as $1000 US. Poor areas all around the world, including those aforementioned countries also and including the US eat horse as an inexpensive alternative to other fresh meat. Eating horse meat was not widely accepted until WWII. Did you know that both the allied and axis troops depended on horse meat solely in late 1944 and 1945? During the occupation of both Japan and Germany, the US supplied the citizens of those countries horse meat…… I guess it stuck for some. But we are not talking about those countries, just Mexico…. Mexico doesn’t export the meat, it is sold in the markets last I seen for .75 cents a pound (ground). Beef was selling for 7 dollars a pound.

        • Joe S.

          Sounds like you think there should be a horse meat market in this country and I suppose many would agree. I do remember there was a mention of using horse flesh in the prision system as a “cheap” way of feeding the inmates.
          There is a horse meat market in S. Florida right now and you may know horses were being stolen out of their barns and being slaughtered not too long ago.
          Further, I grew up in Ireland and I do KNOW people there do not eat horses..it is really frowned upon so that at least makes your statement of  ”every country in the world” less accurate.

          • Raytmmm55

            http://www.irishcentral.com/news/300-Irish-horses-slaughtered-weekly—eaten-in-European-restaurants-151184795.html

            Check out the above link……..Need I really say more??

            No, I would love to see the end of horse slaughter for human consumption. Rendering will always be necessary for other reasons, however for rendering the animal can be humanly euthinized. 

            The only way to solve the problem of horse slaughter is to take away the demand for it. The demand is cheap meat….It would be very easy to do…I think brendaw’s idea above is fantastic…Lets all get some cattle and sell them as cheap as horse….I bought three calves this week, will grow and sell in little Haiti or whatever…. I am in S Florida and well aware of the happenings…. Careful what you believe going on there, yes they eat alot of horse, but they usually buy them…Most of the “stolen” horses have a bit more of a story behind them, ie insurance etc…..

          • Joe S.

            Mea culpa ! or at least  partial mea culpa since horse flesh is not consumed there but  contential Europe is a different story. People do appear to have an insatiable appetite for meat. I wonder what is next. 
            And some people consume horse because they believe it makes them strong and not for financial reasons. Your stoory of $1,000 a plate for foal is disgusting and does not shed a kind light on humanity..what decadence.
            I would not doubt there may have been some insurance scams in S Fl. but there was an arrest concerning theft and slaughter of horses there or is it all a big lie..

  • Brendaw

    I know I am late to the party but here is my two cents.
    I have attended these small sales for 45 plus years. TB’s are minority of horses which go thru. Mostly backyard horses. Right now the hot horse for slaughter is the mini horses. Yield is high and you can pick them up for 5-10 cents a pound. Usually when a TB owner sends the horse to auction for the purpose of slaughter, no paperwork is sent, the coggins has a made up name, and the tattoo is modified so that it can’t be read. These horses were not sent to slaughter but to sell. Kill buyers attend every auction and travel farm to farm and vet to vet gathering. Many have classified ads you can look up. They are easy to spot.

    Nobody wants to eat horse. It’s tough, doesn’t taste good, hard to cook and preserve. Many of the poorer areas of the world have no other choice. You want to end 90% of all horse slaughter, feed these people. Corporations and governments have artificially increased the price of food stuff in the name of profit. Look at corn, US silos are full, crops will yield 80% even with the drought, and we import 99% of the corn used in the US. Using corn in fuel doesn’t help the enviroment one bit, only corporate profit. If every horse owner who wants to end horse slaughter would raise 3 head of cattle each year and flood the market, it would bring the cost of beef down to where it would replace horse meat. Take away the need……

  • Anita Xanax

    A thousand thank yous for your noble graciousness and sense of responsibility!! Hopefully you will set the bar as high for other Cali owners and breeders regarding the fate of theirstock as you have been in improving the breeding of it. Bravo, Golden Eagle Farm!!

  • Larry Ensor

    Cynthia, I hope my most recent post clarified what I was trying to say and was not meant to be directed at you personally. I believe I have come to your defense a time or two. Given the fact you use your real name and I know that you and your husband have been around for quite a few years and not just as “back yard breeders”. you have the experience, expertise and have put your money where you mouth is to make creditable and accurate statements.

    I find it most interesting and a bit unsettling that the IRS would disallow deducting the cost of keeping retired horses as a business expense. IMO this is something the Industry needs to address ASAP. Where’s the NTRA when we need them?

    In reference to the cost of keeping retired horses my I error for not stating OUR costs. The numbers stated are based on our cost at our farm in our area of the country, SE Pa.
    We make our living with horses and like any business I do an annual audit of costs associated with every aspect of running our farm. So I know these numbers to be real for our operation. Now, our feed cost are substantially lower then yours. We stopped buy the “named” brands of feed several years ago their price per 50 lbs more then double in the 5 years. The majority of our feed is bought from a family owned mill mixed to our specifications and comes in 100 lb bags. Example 12-10 sweet feed cost us around 5 cents per pound. All of our horses, at present 43 of various ages, mares, foals, horses in training, retired, etc. are feed using this mills feed. It is excellent feed. We are also able to keep our feed costs low because we grow and bale excellent hay. More then enough, in most years, to get through the winter and sell some. Our oldest retired mares are in their early 20’s live out pretty much 24-7 with other mares, barren or with foals. Yes, they show their age but look fabulous and are feed the same. Luckily they require little to no extra care at this time. They only come in on the most miserable of days otherwise they are just blanket when needed. None of our horses are ever pampered no matter what their value. They are treated like horses. There is no preference order on this farm per-se.

  • Raytmmm55

    WOW REALLY. Careful you don’t get a nosebleed sitting in your tower. In todays informed world how could you even be so ignorant. Take a walk thru the streets of your nearest inner city to get a taste. Not everyone in this WORLD has had the same opportunity as your royal highness. It’s people like you, who haven’t a clue making the slaughter situation worse and worse.

    Your sick of hearing about the increase in cost of feed. You must be really really rich. Not to worry, you won’t be long. 2009 Quality Feed and Hay for one horse was $2.75 a day. Today the same feed and hay is $9.10 a day. Sick of hearing it….IT IS A MAJOR PART OF WHY HORSES ARE SLAUGHTERED, if people in this world cannot afford beef, they have to go elsewhere. By the way, they also eat dogs and cats as well…..

  • Anita Xanax

    Wow…twisted words and terribly skewed priorities…children>horses/dogs/cats>food animals…to even suggest someone would misraise a child because of how they handle their horses or that they eat meat?? REALLY??

  • Anita Xanax

    Wow…ignorance rampant. The one thing Ferdinand taught the Japanese horse industry is YOU DON’T EAT A NAME. Sunday Silence was treated like a KING, and so will Cookie be. At least he’ll get great mares for his book instead of leftovers.

  • philp

    Story Time……Several years ago my horse S ran against another horse T in allowance company always finishing one two together, both winning their share of races. T was dropped into claiming at the end of one meet, and I lost the shake for him. He raced poorly for the new connections. He ended up on a truck headed for a slaughterhouse in another state. I bought him off the truck for $300. It took me about a year to get him back to the races, when I did at 9 years old he won three races. After racing I retrained him and used him for a year as a posse pony. He was a great trail horse and absolutely safe for anyone. As the economy declined and feed got expensive, I was faced with reducing stock. He was one. I donated him to a very large national charity that works with children. He was used with great pleasure for the summer. I found the rest of the story out from a friend in Texas who found out too late for us to do anything. The wonderful charity shipped him along with several other horses to an killer auction. All ended up in the slaughterhouse in Mexico. This is a charity everyone of you would donate a horse to in a second without even thinking about it. They receive millions of dollars a year in donation for all the wonderful things they do. 

    With that said, I will never donate or retire another horse into someone else’s hand. I have spent some time the last couple of years looking into charities and rescue groups. I hate to say it, but most are crap. Most only take horses they can resell and make some money at. Others send straight to slaughter. Some are only a tax dodge. To give you an idea, there are over 5500 horse rescue groups in the US according to Federal records.

    As other people have said on here, gotta fix the reason for slaughter to end slaughter.

    • NorthStar326

      I don’t know what rescues you are referring to, but I don’t doubt such evil people exist.  Most rescues do NOT sell horses to slaughter, those are scams. I have stopped donating to any but local rescues and those rescues must have a very stringent contract and a return clause.  Even with that…I thoroughly agree with you that I would not donate a horse to a rescue, nor would i give a horse away to a person or put it in a sale.  And even the best rescues allow horses to go to slaughter, while spending thousands in vet bills to help one horse, when that horse should have been euthanized.  Personally, I would rather they rescue them and euthanize them, than spend thousands to rehab them, while 100′s more horses suffer a horrific death at slaughter.

  • philp

    Story Time……Several years ago my horse S ran against another horse T in allowance company always finishing one two together, both winning their share of races. T was dropped into claiming at the end of one meet, and I lost the shake for him. He raced poorly for the new connections. He ended up on a truck headed for a slaughterhouse in another state. I bought him off the truck for $300. It took me about a year to get him back to the races, when I did at 9 years old he won three races. After racing I retrained him and used him for a year as a posse pony. He was a great trail horse and absolutely safe for anyone. As the economy declined and feed got expensive, I was faced with reducing stock. He was one. I donated him to a very large national charity that works with children. He was used with great pleasure for the summer. I found the rest of the story out from a friend in Texas who found out too late for us to do anything. The wonderful charity shipped him along with several other horses to an killer auction. All ended up in the slaughterhouse in Mexico. This is a charity everyone of you would donate a horse to in a second without even thinking about it. They receive millions of dollars a year in donation for all the wonderful things they do. 

    With that said, I will never donate or retire another horse into someone else’s hand. I have spent some time the last couple of years looking into charities and rescue groups. I hate to say it, but most are crap. Most only take horses they can resell and make some money at. Others send straight to slaughter. Some are only a tax dodge. To give you an idea, there are over 5500 horse rescue groups in the US according to Federal records.

    As other people have said on here, gotta fix the reason for slaughter to end slaughter.

  • Hossracergp

    Even if I was suggesting that more horses should be bred, which I am not…..neither you nor I get to make that decision for someone else. 

  • Larry Ensor

    typo;  feed cost should read 20.5 cents per lb

  • James Staples

    NO DOUBT!!!…

  • philp

    Wow 20.5 thats still expensive. I mix my own at the farm and got it down to 16. Hate to see what the commercial stuff in your area goes for. I tried the feed mill in my area, but found too much sawdust and sand mixed in, a common practice in smaller mills.

  • Fourx4boy

    Cynthia and Larry,  I just wanted to express my gratefulness for both of you sharing your expertise! Thank you!!!

  • Larry Ensor

    I agree private mills can be a bit tricky. The best advertising is word of mouth and the good mills get plenty of that. We use more then 5 tons a month mixing it our self isn’t practical. We have more then enough to do as it is. But certainly would be for a large scale retirement farm where all they have to do is feed and provide basic care.
    Last time I checked the “quality name brands” were close to $17-18 per 50 lb bag and that is with a volume discount plus delivery. Depending on fat and protein and anything else we request from our mill the price is $18-21 per 100 lbs. In our case it would be a savings of more then $5,000 per year. But the additional labor costs, I got to pay myself something, plus the cost and up keep of the necessary infrastructure, equipment and possible spoilage don’t merit the exercise IMO.

  • Roisin

    I recall that John Henry finally got the right trainer who was able to manage him without problems and everyone knows the end of the story. 

  • Joe S.

    More likely he is not telling the truth. However, he must think people are stupid. He has been in the business long enough to know the mares were headed for slaughter. It would be a stroke of good fortune if even one mare went to a new home. Also one can bet he has done this before. When people are caught it usually is not the first. 

  • philp

    Five years ago I was using 5+ tons per month as well. That was too much to try to do ourselves. Now I use about 2 tons, very doable. It takes about 2 hours a month, with the equipment I picked up on craigslist for a song. I prefer a high protein, low fat, low fiber diet here in FL. So my ingredients are simple. I just found a source in South Fl for beat pulp at $38 a ton. Now if I could do something with corn…..Thanks for the info

  • Fourx4boy

    Yes, I am replying to my own thought….To clarify, in my example, I am not saying that TB only sales/auctions have any ‘responsibilities’ toward unwanted horses.  They don’t.  I was just throwing out an idea that they could consider (only if they want to do it) on a temporary basis, while the market suffers, to maybe help in some fashion as long as it did not over-stress their business.  Then again, maybe it just wouldn’t work anyway.

  • Fourx4boy

    Quarter Horses and Paints are WONDERFUL horses! A horse is a horse. Thoroughbreds are no better or worse than any other.

  • Barbara

    Larry, the industry and your horses are lucky to have someone as compassionate, communicative, reasonable, and smart as you. Enjoy your posts.

    • Larry Ensor

      Very kind. Wish it paid better. Though I am sure there may have been some friends, in-laws, acquaintances and creditors who choked on their coffee while reading your post.

  • Barbara

    Larry, the industry and your horses are lucky to have someone as compassionate, communicative, reasonable, and smart as you. Enjoy your posts.

  • NorthStar326

    I don’t know what rescues you are referring to, but I don’t doubt such evil people exist.  Most rescues do NOT sell horses to slaughter, those are scams. I have stopped donating to any but local rescues and those rescues must have a very stringent contract and a return clause.  Even with that…I thoroughly agree with you that I would not donate a horse to a rescue, nor would i give a horse away to a person or put it in a sale.  And even the best rescues allow horses to go to slaughter, while spending thousands in vet bills to help one horse, when that horse should have been euthanized.  Personally, I would rather they rescue them and euthanize them, than spend thousands to rehab them, while 100′s more horses suffer a horrific death at slaughter.

  • NorthStar326

    There have been some rather notable occasions where some once very nice broodmare band culls have gone thru Keenland and out the back door.  I recall some of the breeders were called…I guess I won’t mention any names…and gee, they just couldn’t find it in their heart to help…they sold her long ago.  So, sending a barren and unmarketable mare to a quality auction does not solve the problem either.

  • NorthStar326

    The point was there are probably 5 x more QH and Paints, which equates to that many more QH and Paints going to slaughter, so REALLY, we don’t need anymore of those bred to squeeze one more foal out of a discarded Thoroughbred mare.  But yeah…why not add to the problem of overbreeding to solve the overbreeding problem.  Are you related to Obama or Pelosi?

  • NorthStar326

    Yes, you were suggesting that more horses should be bred in your comment above.  And yes someone clearly needs to make decisions for irresponsible people who cause innocent creatures to suffer because they can’t think beyond their egos.

  • Hossracergp

    Ok….where exactly did I suggest people should breed more horses? Please quote me, I’d like to see it. I provided a reason why people might be shopping at those types of auctions other than for purposes of slaughter.

  • Hossracergp

    So…..your broodmare band of five consists of three unraced mares and the two mares who did race produced foals who couldn’t stand training? And you are making judgement calls on what other people should breed? How many of your unraced mares are stakes producers? Isn’t the point of breeding to create stakes caliber horses not claimers? I think your practice invalidates your theory of responsible breeding.

  • Hossracergp

    Yes…..Our Mims a Calumet bred mare who ended up where before she was saved? Isn’t it our duty to publicly rail against Calumet for allowing such a mare to fall through the cracks? 

  • Joe S.

    Since when  are France, Belgium and Japan poor countries ??? I find it hard to believe you do not know horse meat is heavily consumed in these countries. As a matter of fact, Belgium was heavily invested in at least one horse slaughter house in Texas or Illinois before they closed several years ago. The Wall Street Journal did some articles on this several years ago and did another article titled ”Te Other Red Meat”around the time of the scare surrounding the bovine spongeform encephalitis epidemic or mad cow disease. 
    Further, horse slaughter goes on in Florida and there is  

  • Raytmmm55

    Horse meat is eaten in every country in the world. The countries you mentioned serve horse as a rare gourmet dish. Usually foals are used and a single serving can cost as much as $1000 US. Poor areas all around the world, including those aforementioned countries also and including the US eat horse as an inexpensive alternative to other fresh meat. Eating horse meat was not widely accepted until WWII. Did you know that both the allied and axis troops depended on horse meat solely in late 1944 and 1945? During the occupation of both Japan and Germany, the US supplied the citizens of those countries horse meat…… I guess it stuck for some. But we are not talking about those countries, just Mexico…. Mexico doesn’t export the meat, it is sold in the markets last I seen for .75 cents a pound (ground). Beef was selling for 7 dollars a pound.

  • Fourx4boy

    There’s one thing we can agree on….Obama and Pelosi—terrible!

  • Joe S.

    Over breeding is a very big and important part of this whole situation. In Thoroughbred racing the stars such as Blame and Uncle Moe, to name just two, win a few high profile races and then retire to the breeding shed where the owners hope to make a small fortune. Greed has a lot to do with it.
    The geldings and fillys/mares keep racing and racing through the claiming ranks and the downward spiral. Follow the careers of some of these claimers and you will see they are often race with just 6 days between starts which may not even be enough time to balance their electrolytes following IV Lasix. Who is looking out for the welfare of these track warriors…nobody, it seems.
    I’m afraid a rising tide lifting all boats can be a two edged sword because many more get in to the horse business than should and when there is a downturn there lots of unwanted horses. 

  • Joe S.

    AMEN TO THAT!!!

  • Larry Ensor

    Very kind. Wish it paid better. Though I am sure there may have been some friends, in-laws, acquaintances and creditors who choked on their coffee while reading your post.

  • Fourx4boy

    Sounds like, based on YOUR views, your 3 unraced mares and 2 poor producing mares should have been euthanized long ago… and certainly never used for breeding purposes again.

  • Joe S.

    Where do you think all the horses sent to Canada and Mexico for slaughter come from ? These mares were sent to the sale to take their chances. The chance of  slaughter is much higher than the chance of a new home at such sales and especially for the 20 yr olds. And that is the real world for such horses and you should know that or do you need to see them hanging from the hook ?
     

  • Joe S.

    And what makes you think this country would do a better or more humane job of slaughtering horses. there are cases of extreme cruelty in the existing slaughter houses here and you should know that. Plus there is a huge lack of oversight because of understaffing and funding of the USDA.
    Slaughter and slaughter houses by their very nature are not humane and can never be and that’s the real world. Sorry to burst your bubble! Humane slaughter is just a feel good term.

  • Joe S.

    Sounds like you think there should be a horse meat market in this country and I suppose many would agree. I do remember there was a mention of using horse flesh in the prision system as a “cheap” way of feeding the inmates.
    There is a horse meat market in S. Florida right now and you may know horses were being stolen out of their barns and being slaughtered not too long ago.
    Further, I grew up in Ireland and I do KNOW people there do not eat horses..it is really frowned upon so that at least makes your statement of  ”every country in the world” less accurate.

  • Raytmmm55

    http://www.irishcentral.com/ne

    Check out the above link……..Need I really say more??

    No, I would love to see the end of horse slaughter for human consumption. Rendering will always be necessary for other reasons, however for rendering the animal can be humanly euthinized. 

    The only way to solve the problem of horse slaughter is to take away the demand for it. The demand is cheap meat….It would be very easy to do…I think brendaw’s idea above is fantastic…Lets all get some cattle and sell them as cheap as horse….I bought three calves this week, will grow and sell in little Haiti or whatever…. I am in S Florida and well aware of the happenings…. Careful what you believe going on there, yes they eat alot of horse, but they usually buy them…Most of the “stolen” horses have a bit more of a story behind them, ie insurance etc…..

  • Horseluv978

    No horse should be slaughtered ever! Most who go to slaughter would be adopted but they are not given the chance, had folks not stepped in those Assumussen horses would have been slaughtered. Yet someone saved them and almost all are already adopted. It is sick to slaughter a horse and not even try to get them to a good home. Horses are sent to Canada and Mexico for slaughter. So yes we don’t slaughter in the U.S. but horses are still sent to their deaths in other countries. They are not killed humanely. They deserve way way better

  • Guest

     The corrective action to horse slaughter is to ban it. Let the free market do what it does best … adjust supply to meet demand.

    I think the majority of posters here want to ban horse slaughter. We can walk and chew gum at the same time; discuss one high profile situation and working to fix the problem across the board.

    Passing the slaughter ban – and enforcing it – will stop enabling the bottom feeders, horse thieves, unlicensed haulers endangering the driving public.

    One stroke of the President’s pen will stop the flow of who knows what into the food supply.

    I don’t think it makes sense to hinge banning HS on first fixing all the related issues – crop subsidies for ethanol – that drove acreage from feed to corn – high fuel costs, Genetically modified feeds, Federal tax subsidies,  etc etc. Nothing in history ever changed that way.

    Just pass the ban. We CAN do that. It’s like the old kid’s game duck duck goose; whoever’s still whining is a slaughterer with no qualms about putting banned drugs into the food supply.

    I wonder if the Asmussen mares got fertility drugs?

  • Guest

     Oh for heavens sake. We’re not talking about ladies makeup.

    We’re talking about the unintended or intended consequences of the Asmussens sending used up mares to an auction where slaughter dealers frequent, instead of providing them the dignified retirement they earned by producing 1-3 year depreciable assets all these years. 

    Slaughter – unlike rendering – requires the horse to be alive and bled out. Most wake up after multiple stuns to be dismembered while conscious and able to feel pain.

    Linking a family name with HOY connections to that is news.

    At best, the Asmussens failed to do due diligence; even a casual horse owner knows better.

    Of course they knew.

    Missing from their weak response was the farm’s position on horse slaughter.

  • Guest

     At some tracks, he would have lost his stalls if his horses were found in the hands of a killer. Pretending you don’t know? EVERYBODY pretends that; it’s like Sandusky pretending he was just roughhousing.

    The public won’t put up with the slaughter of equine athletes forever; look at Greyhound racing in Massachusets.

  • Joe S.

    Mea culpa ! or at least  partial mea culpa since horse flesh is not consumed there but  contential Europe is a different story. People do appear to have an insatiable appetite for meat. I wonder what is next. 
    And some people consume horse because they believe it makes them strong and not for financial reasons. Your stoory of $1,000 a plate for foal is disgusting and does not shed a kind light on humanity..what decadence.
    I would not doubt there may have been some insurance scams in S Fl. but there was an arrest concerning theft and slaughter of horses there or is it all a big lie..

  • Theross

    I find this desusting as an owner of racehorses and working in rhe industry for a long tine its not unheard of for this practice however i feel if u can destroy a horse because its not producing great baby why not destroy the breeder finansially i hope peopke going to the sales to buy yearlings avoid these breeders like the plaige hurt them in the hip pocket

  • Theross

    I find this desusting as an owner of racehorses and working in rhe industry for a long tine its not unheard of for this practice however i feel if u can destroy a horse because its not producing great baby why not destroy the breeder finansially i hope peopke going to the sales to buy yearlings avoid these breeders like the plaige hurt them in the hip pocket

  • Theross

    And gail i dont know about in your country but the majority of people in ours do care its the minority here in australia but non the less shouldnt b permited at all

  • Theross

    And gail i dont know about in your country but the majority of people in ours do care its the minority here in australia but non the less shouldnt b permited at all

  • Whoa Mule

    I bought one of the mares and she is turned out with my other broodmares! Eating grass a d grained twice daily O yea platinum performance supplements too! She will be bred and have a good life in Fredericksburg Tx.

    • Rosiepaint

      You must have the Lear Fan mare. Thank you for buying her.

    • ziggypop

      Bravo for giving the mare a home where her life in not ever in danger of slaughter again.

      I still cannot believe anyone in the industry gets away with this c$)p.

  • Whoa Mule

    I bought one of the mares and she is turned out with my other broodmares! Eating grass a d grained twice daily O yea platinum performance supplements too! She will be bred and have a good life in Fredericksburg Tx.

  • Rosiepaint

    You must have the Lear Fan mare. Thank you for buying her.

  • http://www.facebook.com/andreacun Andrea Cunningham

    I have tried to get awareness that if every state would put a fee on every license from the owner down to vendors, hotwalker etc.plus a fee added to registration ofevery foal we could generate enough money to care for these horses! please help, don’t turn your back. Be part of the solution not part of the problem!

  • http://www.facebook.com/andreacun Andrea Cunningham

    I have tried to get awareness that if every state would put a fee on every license from the owner down to vendors, hotwalker etc.plus a fee added to registration ofevery foal we could generate enough money to care for these horses! please help, don’t turn your back. Be part of the solution not part of the problem!

  • Sadiecarl

    I have a question: what would the tax/business consequences be for “losing” 9 broodmares that were in-foal to one of the farm’s stallions, as opposed to in foal by another stallion belonging to another farm and/or just being listed as “barren.” Is there another financial angle here we’re not seeing – in addition to the mares being “thrown away?”

  • Cynthia McGinnes

    First, just because the mares were listed as bred back, it doesn’t mean they were in foal when they went through the sale..I suspect most of them were not or they wouldn’t have been put in the sale. Second, they were bred back to the farm’s stallions because then they wouldn’t have to put more money in the mares by paying outside stud fees. Third, if the mares were not worth keeping, the IRS would applaud a business plan that allowed the farm to dispose of the mares and their upkeep any way at all.From a tax standpoint there were many more reasons to dispose of the mares than keep them

  • myykkyy

    I CANNOT UNDERSTAND WHY THESE PEOPLE DON’T CONTACT THE RESCUES TO COME GET THESE MARES BEFORE SELLING THEM AT AUCTION. THEY COULD GET THE SAME AMOUNT OF MONEY.
    IT MAKES NO SENSE~!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Rothgar

      The rescues are full of horses off the racetracks that are easier to retrain and find homes for. The rescues would not take these mares!

      • ziggypop

        This is from a year ago, and I believe they were all saved! However, some where in rough shape and I think several of them had to be put down after they became ill.

  • myykkyy

    I CANNOT UNDERSTAND WHY THESE PEOPLE DON’T CONTACT THE RESCUES TO COME GET THESE MARES BEFORE SELLING THEM AT AUCTION. THEY COULD GET THE SAME AMOUNT OF MONEY.
    IT MAKES NO SENSE~!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Rothgar

    The rescues are full of horses off the racetracks that are easier to retrain and find homes for. The rescues would not take these mares!

  • Pam Hagen

    Yes very despicable… Are these horses rescued? Where are they? Will they be adoptable?

  • caroline

    Why is this link circulating in social media again?

  • wkvmeso

    I would be interested in purchasing some of the horses. I can be contacted at wkvmeso@yahoo.com and provide them with a good home.

  • Bright Futures Farm

    This is the second time in less than a year that Asmussen vehicles have taken Asmussen horses to auctions known to be frequented by kill buyers. This is arrogance at it’s best. After being publicly chastised once, they again use company vans to do it again? No, it’s not illegal, but really… where is the reprimand from the racing industry?????

    • RayPaulick

      The article is from July 2012

      • Bright Futures Farm

        Apologies. The article came up in a news feed and I read it, but did not look at the date.

  • J Carson Black

    Seems to me they’ve done this before.

  • karla Georges

    I can not believe what I’m reading. Murrell testifying to reverse the ban on slaughter in Tx.? This must never happen. What must happen is to set up a retirement system to secure safe placement from racing to breeding till they pass away. Cut down on breeding, especially cheap horses, that few people want. Raise purses, so owners will want horses that can pay their own way. & many other things,.but I’m so tired of horse abuse that I won’t continue to elaborate on things that need to be done!

  • phyllis Ellioyy

    It is an every day event, and it is a very sad event. If it is ever going to change, it needs to start with the breeders, stallion owners, mare owners and in the racing world, the owners of these horses that make a living off them. Money some how needs to be set aside in a “retirement” fund for the horse. An IRA if you will. Until then, we will never see the end to the dumping of horses. It doesn’t matter what industry. Racing, show or pleasure. This country should be ashamed of how we trash everything that is no longer useful, including, all animals, the elderly and even sadder some of this country’s children! There are angels among us, but we are too few and far between.

  • Lisa

    Praise, kudos, heartfelt thanks to the rescuers. God bless you! May this horrible thing (horse slaugher) be banned not only from Texas, but all of the US.

  • GabyS

    This on top of the videos and scrutiny that Asmussen is already under for the PETA video and his asst. trainer. The lies end when the truth appears and it seems that all of Asmussens skeletons are coming out of the closet. It wouldn’t surprise me if more stuff started coming out about him.

  • anon

    There is a terrible irony in this horse slaughter business. The former race horses who go to slaughter are often old and have universally been treated over and over with substances all labeled “NOT TO BE USED IN ANIMALS INTENDED FOR HUMAN CONSUMPTION”. Where on earth is the market for meat from a 20 year-old animal that has been dosed with worm medications, DMSO, steroids, and God-knows what all else? I think I would steer clear (nice pun) of those places.

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