Three Chimneys posts protocol on horses at risk for slaughter

by | 12.06.2011 | 10:51am

Now that Congress has rescinded its ban on funding horse meat inspections – paving the way for horse meat processing plants to open once again in the United States – the issue of horse slaughter has reemerged as a hot-button issue.  At the Paulick Report and elsewhere, a vigorous debate is underway as the Thoroughbred industry grapples with this difficult subject.

Three Chimneys Farm, for one, reports that it has received numerous emails, phone calls and social media posts regarding its policies.  In an effort to be as transparent as possible, Three Chimneys has posted its protocol on Facebook.  An excerpt:

“If a horse that Three Chimneys bred or owned during any portion of its life is found to be in an at-risk situation, we will take care of getting it into a safe situation, no questions asked. The broodmares on the farm retire here once their breeding days are behind them, as do our stallions when they retire from stud duty (even horses like Silver Charm, who started his stallion career at Three Chimneys before moving to Japan – he'll be brought back to Three Chimneys to enjoy his retirement). We also keep an eye out for horses by our stallions (that we are not listed as the breeder for) who end up in jeopardy and help to get them out of their adverse situations and into safer circumstances.”

Click here to read the entire post and view the many comments made in response.

  • Barbara

    Three Chimney’s deserves high praise for being the first major farm to state a policy clearly and in detail, and to encourage contact with them when anyone sees a horse in need that has a connection to 3C’s. And they don’t play games with the “but we didn’t own him at the end” bit, either. It has been a tough row for most farms the past few years, but I hope that 3C’s is rewarded for their efforts. Take care of the horse, and he will take care of you.

    I dare say most other farm owners don’t want to go there and invite mouths to feed and work to do to place horses. Even the farms that mostly do right by their own.

  • Janice Palmer

    Bravo! Hope more will follow in Three Chimney’s footsteps!

  • Rachel

    That’s all it takes, for people to take responsibilty for animals they either breed, make money off of, enjoy as a hobby, or use in the performance of work…
    Every horse deserves, and many horses have d**n well earned, a relatively pain-free, stress-free end to their life.
    It is 100% a people responsibility.

  • Ida

    Thank you Three Chimney’s. Hope other farms follow your protocol. The idea of one day seeing one of my favorites TB (like Ferdinand) butchered, just sends me into fits of horror, heartbreak and tears. If I live to be a million years old, I’ll never forget reading about what happened to Ferdinand. I still have nightmares. And now there’s a danger it can happen again. I can’t stand it.

  • Thank you Three Chimney’s!

  • Those interested in the long term welfare of their horses can enroll them in the Jockey Club’s Thoroughbred Connect program to ask to be notified if that horse ever needs help. I work for the Standardbred registry, the US Trotting Assn and we have over 3,000 horses enrolled in a similar program, Full Circle. That is also the name of the AQHA’s similar program.

  • Jef

    Bravo to Three Chimneys! Reopening this discussion may finally force breeders to take responsbility for the horses they created.

  • rosesandhorses

    Thank you Three Chimney for taking a stand and putting it in writing. I just hope others will follow.

  • Jeff Hudson

    No less was expected from a operation that has always been formost in class and responsibility. THANK YOu. Of course you know there are people on the slaughter side that wil lnow say you really are not a full time member of the horse industry of coure. no nothing of horse breeding nor the financial obligations of running one.

    Thank you for what you do for the industry as a whole and for horses as part of it.

  • Gail Vacca

    Bravo Three Chimney’s! Thank you for having the compassion to do right by your horses and for having the courage to publicly announce your position!

    I hope that ALL TB breeding farms will follow suit! Perhaps the Jockey Club can add a page to their website where breeders, owners, trainers, etc can take a similar “Pledge” for their horses. This would make it infinitely easier to rescue horses from kill pens, etc?

  • Jo Anne Normile

    Such heartening news from Three Chimneys! Bravo! Magnificent! I have visited Three Chimneys for decades, even having the thrill of my photo taken with Seattle Slew in front of the stallion barn!

    Their statement: “If a horse that Three Chimneys bred or owned during any portion of its life is found to be in an at-risk situation, we will take care of getting it into a safe situation, no questions asked.” is PURE CLASS, COMPASSION and RESPECT and has set the bar for the all in the industry!

    There’s not a single NTRA “aftercare” program out there that can match what Three Chimney’s has done but there’s no reason why not.
    Thank you, Three Chimneys!!!

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