May 2013 Moms

NBR: I called humane society today

Title: NBR: I called humane society today

We live in an equestrian town. There is a horse in my parents neighborhood that has been looking bad... Ribs and bones protruding. A dirt pen. No shelter. The second horse in this small pen is thin as well shoulder bones protrude but not ribs...

I called the humane society. I know there is a chance the horse is sick, but I couldn't keep looking at him in case it is neglect. Breaks my heart either way but at least this way the humane society can step in if needed..

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Re: NBR: I called humane society today

  • kmcd23kmcd23
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    Good for you! If they are sick , no harm done. If not, only good can come if it for those horses.
  • JoJo716JoJo716
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    That is so sad! You did the right thing by calling. 
     

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  • As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.
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  • kmcd23kmcd23
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    image watermelon mom:
    As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.


    If he's just aging, why would anything come of it? As an animal lover, I'd much rather people reach out when things seem questionable, because so often they are, then worry about the what if's that could explain the situation. That's what the animal welfare agencies are there for.
  • image watermelon mom:
    As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.
    I understand.. But the conditions aren't looking favorable for the horse. I made it clear when I called that I didn't know if it was age or sickness or neglect... But to be honest if its age or sickness there is nothing for the owner to worry about. If its something else the horse will be better off. I'd rather be wrong and have called than not have called. Like I said breaks my heart either way.

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  • If in doubt call. No point in waiting until you're sure because it's usually too late then.

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  • image snowgirl427:
    image watermelon mom:
    As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.
    I understand.. But the conditions aren't looking favorable for the horse. I made it clear when I called that I didn't know if it was age or sickness or neglect... But to be honest if its age or sickness there is nothing for the owner to worry about. If its something else the horse will be better off. I'd rather be wrong and have called than not have called. Like I said breaks my heart either way.
    I think you made the right call here. I also am a horse owner, and yes, there are lots of old horses out there, living out their last days in peace, but there are also lots of terrible horse owners, who don't feed their horses properly or provide adequate shelter (shade and protection from elements I'd argue is almost as frequently an issue as food). I would always err on the side of being safe- well done! Too many people that can't care for them own horses. It's really sad.

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  • image watermelon mom:
    As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.

    I have never seen a well kept aging horse taken from their owners. But I have seen many horses rescued that were being starved and neglected. My family owns a large equestrian facility in Atlanta and they sometimes help house and rehab rescued horses for free. I think calling animal services is the correct thing to do if abuse/neglect is suspected, let the professionals look at the situation and make the decision.

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  • image kmcd23:
    image watermelon mom:
    As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.


    If he's just aging, why would anything come of it? As an animal lover, I'd much rather people reach out when things seem questionable, because so often they are, then worry about the what if's that could explain the situation. That's what the animal welfare agencies are there for.


    Because there's a lot of debate in the horse community about what is best to feed horses, and it is damn near impossible to prove you fed them.

    To be clear, if OP had some proof, then that's all fine and good, but a phone call that has damning consequences with only an observation that a horse is skinny is problematic in my experience.

    For example, my friend's horse is lying in the pasture, flat out on his side. A passerby calls authorities to report a dead horse. There are laws about disposing of livestock remains. The horse is simply sleeping. There was still an investigation into the horse's welfare that took about 2 months. All for soaking up sun.
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  • kmcd23kmcd23
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    image watermelon mom:
    image kmcd23:
    image watermelon mom:
    As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.


    If he's just aging, why would anything come of it? As an animal lover, I'd much rather people reach out when things seem questionable, because so often they are, then worry about the what if's that could explain the situation. That's what the animal welfare agencies are there for.


    Because there's a lot of debate in the horse community about what is best to feed horses, and it is damn near impossible to prove you fed them.

    To be clear, if OP had some proof, then that's all fine and good, but a phone call that has damning consequences with only an observation that a horse is skinny is problematic in my experience.

    For example, my friend's horse is lying in the pasture, flat out on his side. A passerby calls authorities to report a dead horse. There are laws about disposing of livestock remains. The horse is simply sleeping. There was still an investigation into the horse's welfare that took about 2 months. All for soaking up sun.


    I think two very skinny horses and no shelter makes her call a little more plausible than just a skinny horse. I'm sorry for what your friend went through though.
  • image watermelon mom:
    As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.

    Sorry but aged does not mean skinny.  We currently care for a 31 year old gelding who is nice and round due to good food, dental care and regular deworming. There are a lot of older horses that do not get the care they need because their owners don know or ignore their changing needs (floating their teeth, wetting their feed, senior feed, soaked beet pulp, etc... can work miracles on older horses).   I used to rescue horses and it drives me crazy when people say a horse is skinny because it's old.

     

    OP-I would like to say good for you for calling.  Too many animals are left in horrible conditions because people are often too scared to step up. 

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  • AmyG*AmyG*
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    In most states shelter is optional, as you can have a horse without having access to a barn.  even here in AZ shade is not required for horses. 

    I got a couple of calls to the humane society about my horse laying out in the sun working on her suntan--she was a black mare so people would freak.out.

    Similarly for a dirt pen, as having access to pasture is also not a requirement.

    Skinny can come from a lot of things, including old age.  some horses are easy keepers and get to ripe old ages without much fuss. other horses you do everything listed above for them and they just start to wither away no matter what you feed them.

     

    Seems like the first step is to talk to the owners.  Often you can find out the answer without having to involve the authorities. 

    We talked to the owners of 2 horses living behind us who were withering away.  They were feeding some funky things that obviously weren't working.  We gave advice, and they changed up some of their feeding habits and the horses started to gain weight.  Unfortunately, they did end up losing the horses to the human society due to complaints from other neighbors, and the horses were put down.

    Old horses are problematic, cause sometimes the humane society will come out and see the state of the horse plus  their age, and determine that the horse must be suffering and advise owners to put them down.  If they aren't put down, they can be removed and then put down.

    There is a lot of people running into trouble feeding their horses in this economy.  The price of feed is up and people are losing their jobs and there just isn't enough $ to go around. 

    AmyG*

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  • It isn't that easy for the Humane Society to confiscate horses.  If the owner has hay or feed on site, then it is considered proof that they are feeding their horses.  If there is a water source, even a scummy bucket, then it is considered an available water source.  There are a lot of cases where they have had to wait until one of the horses falls down dead from starvation before they can legally start the process of removing horses from negligent owners.

    I was one of the people who rescued 87 horses from what has been dubbed "The Georgetown Herd".  The owner bought 100 yearlings, foals and two year olds. Despite having multiple people call the HS over their condition, 13 of them died of starvation before anything could legally be done to save them. The HS kept saying he had hay on site (3 black, moldy bales for 100 horses!) and water available (a small pond at the end of the paddock), so their hands were tied.  Out of the 87 that were rescued, another 6 died from emaciation and parasite infestations. 

     

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  • image Kissimi21:
    It isn't that easy for the Humane Society to confiscate horses.nbsp; If the owner has hay or feed on site, then it is considered proof that they are feeding their horses.nbsp; If there is a water source, even a scummy bucket, than it is considered an available water source.nbsp; There are a lot of cases where they have had to wait until one of the horses falls down dead from starvation before they can legally start the process of removing horses from negligent owners. I was one of the people who rescued 87 horses from what has been dubbed "The Georgetown Herd".nbsp; The owner boughtnbsp;100 yearlings, foals and two year olds.nbsp;Despite having multiple people call the HS over their condition, 13 of them died of starvation before anything could legally be done to save them. The HS kept saying he had hay on site 3 black, moldy bales for 100 horses! and water available a small pond at the end of the paddock, so their hands were tied.nbsp; Out of the 87 that were rescued, another 6 died from emaciation and parasite infestations.nbsp; nbsp;


    This is very interesting. It sounds like things are different here in Washington.
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  • Thanks ladies. And sorry to those who have had bad experiences or their friends. I would never call the HS because I saw an animal laying down. In fact thankfully I've never called before period. Never had to and hopefully never will have to again. I think it's just a difficult situation. Had this been someone I knew even remotely I would have spoken to them first.. But I don't. I did ask a neighbor of my parents who mentioned that their interactions with the homeowners were not great which added to my reason not to approach them directly.

    And just to clarify there is a big difference between skinny and emaciated. Being able to see the horses skeleton is not just skinny. Their second horse is skinny... This one beyond so.

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  • image watermelon mom:
    image Kissimi21:
    It isn't that easy for the Humane Society to confiscate horses.nbsp; If the owner has hay or feed on site, then it is considered proof that they are feeding their horses.nbsp; If there is a water source, even a scummy bucket, than it is considered an available water source.nbsp; There are a lot of cases where they have had to wait until one of the horses falls down dead from starvation before they can legally start the process of removing horses from negligent owners. I was one of the people who rescued 87 horses from what has been dubbed "The Georgetown Herd".nbsp; The owner boughtnbsp;100 yearlings, foals and two year olds.nbsp;Despite having multiple people call the HS over their condition, 13 of them died of starvation before anything could legally be done to save them. The HS kept saying he had hay on site 3 black, moldy bales for 100 horses! and water available a small pond at the end of the paddock, so their hands were tied.nbsp; Out of the 87 that were rescued, another 6 died from emaciation and parasite infestations.nbsp; nbsp;
    This is very interesting. It sounds like things are different here in Washington.

    If things are stricter there, then I am jealous.  The horse community here is still fighting to toughen the laws and fines. 

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  • image watermelon mom:
    As a horse owner, this is pretty frustrating. Perhaps the horse is just old. I've seen people lose their best friends that they've had for 30 years because they assume that an aging horse is a poorly kept one.


    I also own two horses. They are my best friends, I spend so many hours with them in the summer time riding them, getting ready for shows, taking care of them and enjoying them. It really breaks my heart when I see people that don't care for their horses. They are like family to us. If you can't afford feed, farrier, de worming and applicable vaccinations you shouldn't own one. Period. End of story. Sell them or give them away.
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