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Discuss Shipshewana and Slaughter in the news again at the Horse Chat forum - Horse Forums.

Well after watching the Martha Stewart clip Peg put up I went and looked for ...
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    Shipshewana and Slaughter in the news again

    Well after watching the Martha Stewart clip Peg put up I went and looked for the article in the new york times. And lo and behold there it is with a picture of the Shipshewana horse auction. Man, tell you what the Shipshe auction seems to be a favorite for news articles about slaughter....

    I personally go to this auction a lot (its held every friday during the warmer months with two big sales one the day after Thanksgiving which I went to this year and one right after Christmas). It can be bad and other times good. Often its portrayed as horrible though. Honestly you can't blame the auction, you can only blame the careless owners.

    Heres a link and the article with pictures
    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/11/us/11horse.html?hp

    Horses Spared in U.S. Face Death Across the Border

    Sally Ryan for The New York Times
    A one-eyed pony, center, huddles near another pony at the Shipshewana horse auction. The auction trades driving, work and saddle horses, as well as loose horses, which are often bought for slaughter. More Photos >

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    By CATRIN EINHORN
    Published: January 11, 2008
    SHIPSHEWANA, Ind. — At the weekly horse auction here, No. 274, a handsome chestnut-colored draft horse, looked at the surrounding men while being led into a small ring. Two of the men looked back, calculating how much meat the animal’s carcass would yield, and started bidding accordingly.
    Skip to next paragraph Multimedia

    Slide Show Bidding on Loose Horses





    There is no pretense about what happens to the horses sold in this area of the auction, known as the kill pen. Just a few months ago, many of them would have met their end at a slaughterhouse in neighboring Illinois. Now almost all will be shipped to Canada and killed there.


    Amid pressure from animal rights groups, horse slaughter virtually ended in the United States last year, as courts upheld state laws banning it in Texas and Illinois, home to the nation’s last three horse slaughterhouses.
    But there have been unintended consequences, including more grueling travel for tens of thousands of horses now being sent to slaughter in Canada and Mexico, where, animal advocates say, they sometimes face more gruesome deaths.


    Horses that wind up as No. 274 did last month here in Shipshewana, near the Michigan state line, may once have carried children on their backs, pulled wagons on a farm, even been to the races. Now they are lame, aged, fractious or unwanted for any of various other reasons. Some are young, never broken in to begin with.


    The slaughterhouse closings themselves may have added to the population of the unwanted. In some parts of the country, auctioneers say, the closings have contributed to a drop in the price of horses at the low end of the market, and the added distance in the shipping of horses bound for slaughter, combined with higher fuel costs, means that some small or thin horses are no longer worth the fuel it takes to transport them.


    Add to that a rise in hay and grain prices, as well as a general economic slowdown.


    “First time in my life I’ve seen livestock that has no value,” said Devin Mullet, owner of Kalona Sales Barn in southeastern Iowa.


    After his monthly auction in October, Mr. Mullet said, he shot 28 horses that had failed to fetch any bids. Since then, he has monitored horses coming in for sale, turning away those he thinks are worthless — often yearlings and the aged, which tend to yield less meat. (Horse meat for human consumption is shipped to countries including Belgium, France, Italy and Japan.)


    But opponents of horse slaughter say its domestic demise is a victory, if an incomplete one, in their fight to protect animals they see as devoted companions.


    “It’s a step closer to the long-term goal of banning slaughter in North America,” said Wayne Pacelle, chief executive of the Humane Society of the United States. “There are fewer horses slaughtered.”


    Indeed, even with the busy export to Canada and Mexico, the Agriculture Department estimates that 105,000 American horses were slaughtered in the three countries in 2007, down from some 138,000 the year before.
    For many horses, though, export means hundreds more miles of strenuous transit in large trailers. “It’s difficult for them to keep their balance, they’re often crowded, they have no access to food or water while en route,” said Timothy Cordes, a senior veterinarian with the Agriculture Department.
    Of particular concern to advocates is the treatment of the horses once they reach Mexico, to which exports have more than tripled. American protections simply do not apply there, Dr. Cordes said.


    The American slaughterhouses killed horses quickly by driving steel pins into their brains, a method the American Veterinary Medical Association considers humane. Workers in some Mexican plants, by contrast, disable them by stabbing them with knives to sever their spinal cords, said Temple Grandin, a professor of animal science at Colorado State University.


    “My worst nightmare has happened,” Dr. Grandin said. “This is an example of well-intentioned but very bad unintended consequences.”


    An official with the Mexican agriculture department said the technique described by Dr. Grandin was illegal in Mexico.


    Animal rights groups are pushing for federal legislation that would forbid the sale and transport of horses for human consumption, thereby banning the export market. Bills await action in both houses of Congress.


    In the meantime, the debate over horse slaughter continues to divide the equine community, pitting organizations against one another. Many thoroughbred associations support both the domestic slaughter ban and the proposed legislation; the American Quarter Horse Association is against them. The issue is so controversial that the American Horse Council, a national lobbying group for the horse industry, declares itself neutral.


    Supporters of the ban say the solution to unwanted horses is to euthanize them — by chemical injection, for example, as with a cat or a dog. “Give the horse some dignity,” said Barbara Geittmann, executive director of the Hooved Animal Humane Society. “It gave you all the ribbons and all the wins.”


    But euthanasia and carcass disposal cost upward of $140, according to the American Association of Equine Practitioners, a veterinary group, and there can be environmental issues related to burial.


    At the Shipshewana auction, Keith D. Lambright, an owner and auctioneer, said the price of meaty slaughter horses had dropped to an average of about $230, from roughly $330 a year ago. No. 274 sold for $150, and some in the kill pen brought as little as $30, perhaps to be used as zoo meat.


    A fuzzy foal and an emaciated old-timer fetched nothing at all. A woman felt sorry for them and, despite high feed prices, paid $40 for the pair and took them home as pets.
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    I've been to the Shipshe auction a couple of times as well. Neither times were horrible, not that I at all experienced at auctions. I didn't see a lot of really sad cases. Some that might have been a bit on the skinny side, and one arab gelding that was quite lame and a slightly crippled Belgian foal. That's the worst I've seen.

    Of course, like I said before, I'm very inexperienced at auctions, and I don't know which horses go for meat and which don't.
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    I wish the press and other media would do more research into Wayne Pacelle and the Humane Society of the United States.
    If they spent as much time investigating him and his organization as they do getting quotes from him they might discover they have a lot more interesting story....perhaps a award winning expose!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sandra-A1 View Post
    I wish the press and other media would do more research into Wayne Pacelle and the Humane Society of the United States.
    If they spent as much time investigating him and his organization as they do getting quotes from him they might discover they have a lot more interesting story....perhaps a award winning expose!
    Ditto to that Sandra.

    One time I went to the auction there was a pony there who's hooves resembled elf shoes... it was very sad. When I was there last however I didn't see anything really sad. Now of course when I go I most often go when the saddle horses go through. The loose horses are sold earlier in the morning and they are the ones who are usually the slaughter bound horses.
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    I was wondering what the auction houses were doing with the ones that don't get bids... hmm, now we know. I live about 40 miles from the Kalona sale barn and we have sold horses there when people were buying them. Devin must have quite a hole for the coyotes. How sad...
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    I have never heard of them shooting ones not sold... I don't know how true that is honestly... but it may be.
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    I've been to Shipshe too. In the handful of times I've been there, I've never seen anything that really "bothered" me. That's not to say that there aren't things going on behind the scenes, but they weren't apparent in the times I was there.

    Are either of you (lilrider, Goonhorse) going to be there for the big spring auction? If so, we'll definitely have to meet up
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    Quote Originally Posted by huntseat View Post
    I've been to Shipshe too. In the handful of times I've been there, I've never seen anything that really "bothered" me. That's not to say that there aren't things going on behind the scenes, but they weren't apparent in the times I was there.

    Are either of you (lilrider, Goonhorse) going to be there for the big spring auction? If so, we'll definitely have to meet up
    I'm always at Shipshe... I live 20 minutes away lol. And Troyers is one of the closest tack shops to me now that they did away with the petsmart tack shop.... troyers is usually cheaper than Al bar too.

    As for stuff thats bad, most people don't because most go for the riding horse auction which starts around 3 usually. Its in the morning at like 9 they run the loose horses through and those are the usual slaughter bound horses and ones who will look the worst. After them its the driving horses... then the saddle horses and ponies.
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    When we go, we're usually there for the entire thing. No point in driving an hour each way if we're only going to be there for another two...

    Oh, and I LOVE Troyers too It's so much cheaper than anything we have here, and they have just about everything I ever need I love the "bit wall", but then again, I do have some strange fascination with bits.
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    That is sad, that auction barn looks like New Holland Pa. I have been there a few times, and seen some horrific sights (the kill pens look the same, poor horses crowded in them scared to death)....I can only imagine what's going on up there now....I should take a ride up there, to see about a harness and cart for my mini, as they have a huge parking lot full of vendors, and used tack sales....they even auction off truck loads of hay up there....lots of amish buy and sell horses there too....Cathy
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