Breaking: Congress Moves to Ban Horse Slaughter in the U.S.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013 - 1:30pm
Red horse looking straight ahead

Join us in supporting The Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act, introduced in Congress yesterday by Senators Mary Landrieu (D-LA) and Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Representatives Patrick Meehan (R-PA) and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL). This vital legislation will stop the transport of American horses to slaughter in Mexico and Canada, as well as permanently prevent it from occurring here in the United States. Please ask your Members of Congress to cosponsor the bill and help usher it to passage!

We’ve known for years that horse slaughter is an exceptionally cruel practice—whether it happens in the U.S. or elsewhere. Due to their biology and their psychology, horses cannot be slaughtered in a commercial setting without tremendous suffering and fear. 

We also know that horse meat is not even safe to eat! Horses are fed de-wormers and other toxic drugs that can cause terrible reactions—including death—in people who eat their tainted meat. Consumers in the E.U. are just discovering the dangers they have unwittingly been exposed to, and the scandal grows daily.

In spite of this mountain of damning evidence, the USDA is currently processing an application for a horse slaughter operation here in the United States. Roswell, New Mexico, may soon become ground zero for horse suffering.

The ASPCA has worked closely with federal legislators and other advocacy groups to develop the SAFE Act. This bill will stop the pain and the suffering of equines caught up in this grisly business. Please visit the ASPCA Advocacy Center to take action now to urge your U.S. senators and representative to cosponsor the SAFE Act.

Add new comment



Margaret Gelb

Simply banning horse slaughter ignores the realities of farmers and ranchers. Their horses are NOT pets. When they have outlived their usefulness, they will be sold for slaughter or abandoned. Feed is expensive and will not be wasted on them. What is being done to find homes for these work animals? Banning slaughter in the U.S. has only resulted in long, horrible trips to slaughter houses in Canada/Mexico. The new ban will result in more horses being abandoned, unless there is some plan in place to rescue them. No farmer will spend "only a couple hundred dollars" on euthanasia.

diplomacy first

Slaughter is the ultimate violence. Except for dire circumstances slaughter is not necessary for human survival, yet most humans prefer a carnivorous diet. In some places they like horse meat, others eat dog not lamb. In the different cultures of the world, the animal species that are spared varies drastically. While some are doomed to cruel and routine treatment, and inevitabley slaughtered, others are spared, revered or treated as pets.

Small farmers whose care of animals are ususally more personal and humane, at least up to "processing", are being driven out of business by profit gluttons known as the factory farms of big agribusiness where humane practices are abandoned to maximze profit. Thus innocent livestock are doomed to inhumane and painful lives, and agonizing slaughter. Humans are omnivores who thrive on meat free diets. To the extent that we choose not to end or modify our meat dependent lust, for pleasure or for maximum profit, whether as farmers, sellers, or consumers, we contribute to violent slaughter. Ultimately, we too are vulnerable to our mass culture of insensitive violence and slaughter. That we, our children, or neighbors may be slaughtered without cause or compassion by guns or other means, at an increasingly alarming rate, should be no surprise. Ours is a violent culture. As inhumane treatment of farm animal and horses, and their slaughter, is afforded many widely popular justifications and rationalizations, each of us becomes increasingly vulnerable to the insensitive culture we created, its callous mindset, violence, as well as the agony of slaughter's unprovoked doom.

Reversing this carnivorous habit presents a challenge worth pursuing. Where meat is eaten, portions should be minimized with no amount ever wasted. Meat farmers and merchants could migrate to the market for plant based food that would replace it.


Horse slaughter should be outlawed period!!

Kris kunhardt

Unbelievable. Cruel and unusual punishment for a graceful
Animal that has served our country over and over.
Ridiculous. Stop the madness.


Someone commented that it is better to send them to slaughter than to let them starve to death because their owner can no longer afford to keep them. I say you do not understand the true story of what happens to them from start to finish. The horses are slammed together like sardines, with no food or water for days until they arrive at these horric plants already broken from the brutal journey; some already dead, some with broken legs and severe wounds from being crammed together, which is a disastrous way to haul horses (they are not pigs or cattle). They are extremely sensitive, highly strung animals. The ones that arrive dead are the luck ones, becauae hell has just begun for the ones that survived the journey. They will be dragged from the truck, even with broken legs, beaten about the head until their eyes are popping out, until their head splits open, feverishly sweating, shaking all the while until they final drop to the ground; they will then be hung upside down, still alive, and cut open. Anyone that thinks this is a dignified, compassionate way to let a horse die, is a totally sick, sick, individual. By god, we'll be eating our dogs and cats next. Let's not forget humans could not have survived without the horse; they went to war for us and died in their millions, just innocent animals, they ploughed fields for us so that we could stop this disgusting, barbaric genoside on these wonderful, beautiful animals.
And yes, there is a compassionate way to take a horse's life for those who can no longer afford to keep them. It costs around $100, and it's called "euthanasia"; the only humane way to end a horse's life and, in most cases, this service is provided free from horse rescue organizations. So, sorry, no excuse for sending your beloved friend, who has served you dearly, and done everything you've asked of him/her to send them to a brutal, sadistic, inhumane death.


I used to be a supporter of the ASPCA but now, i'm ashamed! I can see that you are just trying to eliminate agriculture one step at a time! First you start with horses, when will ypu stop! Every farmer and rancher takes excellent care of there livestock including horses! By stopping the slaughter you will bring more hurt then good! Thete is not enough hay, lan or money to take care of the 10 million and counting horses in this country!

chloe Komesarook

How could people be so cruel?


Become vegetarian. More vegetarians=less animal cruelty & killing.

Judy M. Rivers

If this will end the cruel and inhumane practice of horse slaughter and the transport of horses in our great nation, then please get it passed as soon as possible. We cannot allow this in America!

Julia Richardson

Please ban slaughter of all horses.. they are not FOOD.