Update: U.S. Horse Slaughter on Hold…for Now

Thursday, July 11, 2013 - 1:00pm
Update: U.S. Horse Slaughter on Hold…for Now

We recently told you that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) approved applications for horse slaughter inspections at Valley Meat Company LLC in Roswell, New Mexico, and Responsible Transportation in Sigourney, Iowa. The USDA is likely to also grant horse slaughter inspections at Rains Natural Meats plant in Gallatin, Missouri, in the coming days.

This week we learned that no horse slaughter plants will be granted inspections until at least July 29 as a result of a lawsuit filed against the USDA by several animal welfare organizations.

This lawsuit buys critical time for our horses. The Agriculture Appropriations bills, which contain language that would prevent horse slaughter in the U.S., are expected to pass in the coming months. We are seeing building momentum for the Safeguard American Food Exports (SAFE) Act, which would prevent the slaughter of horses in the U.S., end the current export of American horses for slaughter abroad and protect consumers from unknowingly ingesting toxic horse meat.

Please be a voice for horses TODAY: Urge your members of Congress to cosponsor the SAFE Act to end this horrific threat to American horses and protect the public. This is a pivotal time for horses and they need your voice more than ever!

Add new comment




The transport and slaughter of horses is so gruesome. I truly hope they pass the Safe Act.

Becky Norman

I just contacted our state representative about the horse slaughter issue. It is barbaric what they do, and I don't want horsemeat entering our food chain. Do you? Please help support the Safe Act (S. 541/H.R. 1094)

Michael Guest

This cruel method must get shut down for good. Horses don't deserve this. Let them live in peace and love.

Dara Woodworth

No animal should endure this, if animals must be used for food why oh why can't we make sure there is no suffering when they go to market. We live in the 21st century and we still kill with heartless regard towards the animals. Sick


There is real danger here for the horses and for the people. Horses are given drugs that should not be in the food chain. Drugs given to beef cattle have caused concern for the effects in people. These animals are raised for food and are "monitered". Horses can be sick or injured, treated with home made "drugs", and then sent to their deaths. Race horses are treated with strong drugs for racing injuries, and if they don't recover, they are dinner. No testing that I am aware of has studied the long term effects of these drugs. In Europe, horse meat has been found being sold as beef. Do we want that here? I think not. These animals are considered pets or companions and not food. No plants here and no shipping the horses out of the country to their deaths. There are ways of putting down ill, injured and old horses with out sending them ( and panicing them) to slaughter plants.


Please stop the transporting of horses to Canada and Mexico for slaughter.


Please stop the slaughter transporting of horses for food.


When I was looking for horses 20 some years ago, I had to bid against the killers and they were paying good money. I got two, still decorating my pasture, from people that couldn't see them got to killers. People looking for pets can't compete.

Wiley Coyote

There must be an alternative to abandoning unwanted horses on public land, as well as the warehousing of captive feral equines at taxpayer expense. I love horses, have owned dozens and been an outfitter, trainer, and breeder for over 50 years. The lack of a humane way to deal with sick, injured, or dangerous horses has been a real hardship in the past 20 years. Let's drop the emotionalism and get real about this subject again.


Wiley and others: Slaughter is NOT about preventing the abandonment and/or starvation of "unwanted" horses. In fact, there's a huge problem of this nature in Canada where there are several horse slaughter houses. There is simply NO CONNECTION. That mindset has be perpetuated by the pro-slaughter people and has been the only stance they have to support slaughter houses being reopened. In fact, Sue Wallis, a huge pro-slaughter person and elected official from Wyoming planned to not only open slaughter houses but to BREED horses for food! If there's such a huge problem of unwanted horses, why would you breed them for food? It's all about money and nothing at all about horse welfare. Pro-slaughter is about about the cattle and oil industries, both of whom want all our public land for their own financial gains and want to get rid of all those wild horses and burros! Another misconception is that only the lame, sick, and old go to slaughter. In fact, about 85% of all horses going to slaughter are sound, healthy, and under the age of 7! Many pregnant mares are slaughtered (illegal but still happens) along with their babies! Most going to slaughter are Quarter Horses (a result of overbreeding and discarding the not-so-perfect ones) and Thoroughbreds (a result of losing a race!!) and are healthy and fat. Those horses you hear about that are allegedly "dumped" in the desert are actually rejects from the slaughter houses (too skinny!) that the kill buyer simply dumps somewhere to die. So please don't be fooled by the propaganda perpetuated by pro-slaughter people. It has nothing at all to do with the welfare of our horses and there is simply NO WAY to humanely slaughter a horse.