Bill to allow horse slaughter houses OK moves to Senate

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Updated: 3/25/2013 10:08 am Published: 3/24/2013 9:38 pm

A House Bill to allow horse slaughter in Oklahoma is going to the State Senate for a vote this week. 

HB 1999 was authored by Bristow representative Skye McNiel. Local reports quote her saying, “there are 160,000 horses (annually) shipped to Mexico for processing with no standard of care. People who really understand this problem know that these horses should be processed here in the states under USDA regulation and guidelines.”

Local horse rescue volunteers, Terry Way and Mendy Smallwood, have worked for years to save horses from going to slaughterhouses in Mexico and Canada. 

“This bill goes against everything I have been fighting for,” said Mendy Smallwood. 

Smallwood works with local non-profit horse rescue groups all over the country. 

“If you have them and you can’t feed them, or are neglecting them because you cannot afford to take care of them, find a place where they can get help; ask for help, find a place where those horses can go!”

Way and Smallwood believe the House Bill will encourage backyard breeding. They believe the slaughterhouses will only want the young and healthy horses because the meat will be exported from the U.S. to other countries for meat consumption. 

“So why would slaughterhouses only want the sick and old horses?” questioned Terry Way. “They want the young and healthy because they don’t need to be on medication and the meat is lean and tenderer.” 

Supporters of the bill claim it will also help with horse over population. 

“Currently, horses are being sold for cheap because people cannot afford to take of them properly,” said Smallwood.  But the slaughterhouses will pay for the bigger horses.  Some pay 78 cents a pound. That’s a big profit for a bunch of big healthy horses.”

Terry and Mendy have saved many horses from going to directly to slaughterhouses. 

“If I can’t take them from people who neglect them and then give up and need to send them to slaughter then I will take them to another rescue group either here or my friends in Arizona who have a rescue or to Terry’s rescue to make sure these beautiful creatures are cared for.  They deserve to be cared for, they don’t deserve this abuse,” said Smallwood. 

“The answer is education,” said Way. “We need to get the state officials to do their research and education the public about how to care for horses and what to do when you can no longer care for them. We need to regulate backyard breeding. If the representatives are saying this bill is the answer to over population, then that is not true.  This bill will only encourage more breeding and make the problem worse.”

Way also said more problems will arise from this issue like the USDA inspecting meat. 

“Right now the USDA does not inspect horse meat, so that law will also have to be re-visited if this bill passes,” said Way.  “I wish the public would have had a say in this bill and the other horse slaughtering Senate Bill 375.  It’s not right that the public has not been involved.”

If the house bill passes the senate it will go to the governor’s desk to sign this week. 

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The views expressed here do not necessarily represent those of KOKI FOX23 - Tulsa

Tom Durfee - 3/27/2013 12:42 PM
0 Votes
Here is the first warning to a horse killer from the FDA for falsified EID and the horse was positive for bute. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs - prohibited as well Phenylbutazone, known as "bute," is a veterinary drug only label-approved by the Food & Drug Administration for use by veterinarians in dogs and horses. It has been associated with debilitating conditions in humans and it is absolutely not permitted for use in food-producing animals. USDA/FSIS has conducted a special project to for this drug in selected bovine slaughter plants under federal inspection. An earlier pilot project by FSIS found traces less than 3% of the livestock selected for testing, sufficient cause for this special project. There is no tolerance for this drug in food-producing livestock, and they and their by-products are condemned when it is detected. Dairy producers must not use this drug in food-producing livestock and if it is found, those producers will be subject to FDA investigation and possible prosecution.

terri55 - 3/25/2013 5:48 PM
0 Votes
Tulsa, with your religious center, how can you condone the abuse of goods creatures? It sure makes me reconsider my thoughts about Oklahoma. Seems more like a dictatorship than a state in this country. They are crying property rights but what about the property rights of those who lose their horses to theft and find that they've been slaughtered? This while legislation is a total hypocrisy and an atrocity. There hir your property values, your meat industry, your business opportunities, and any other development in your state. I guarantee that i won't be spending my money on any place where such abuse and dishonesty is condoned! Furthermore, I'm going to push for a federal ban on horse slaughter. Oklahoma be damned.

findthetruth - 3/25/2013 12:25 AM
0 Votes
My God what a horrible cruel world the humans are creating!

findthetruth - 3/25/2013 12:25 AM
0 Votes
PLEASE EDUCATE YOURSELVES ABOUT THE TRUTH! Horse slaughter is horrific. Anyone out there with a soul, please read AG King give assistance on horse shooting incident. And watch "Factory Farming in 60 Seconds". PLEASE!
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