Tuesday, May 31, 2011

On Location with Cloud - on his 16th Birthday

EHV-1 spread slows - latest state by state wrap | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

EHV-1 spread slows - latest state by state wrap | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

June 1

By Laurie Dixon

State quarantines and hold orders appear to be working in limiting the spread of deadly Equine Herpesvirus 1 (EHV-1).

Death toll

As at 1.6.2011

New Mexico
Detailed stats

» Got an update? Contact us.

State updates are sporadic, perhaps indicating that no news is good news. Those that do update their information daily have reported limited developments in recent days.

Our state by state wrap of EHV-1 across western states reflects the latest report from the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) of the US Department of Agriculture, dating from last Thursday.

Another full update is expected this Thursday.

The agency is collating all state information and is publishing it when the data is verified.

Information below from individual states is included where it advances the details provided by APHIS.

EHV-1 is capable of causing severe neurological symptoms in horses, which can prove fatal. However, not all horses that are infected will show neurological signs. Those that do have what is known as Equine Herpes Virus Myeloencephalopathy, or EHM.

Horses with severe neurological signs are often unable to stand and are euthanized as a consequence.

Horses in the data below, described as secondarily exposed, are those that came into contact with horses after they attended the National Cutting Horse Association Western National Championships in Ogden, Utah from April 29 to May 8.

Authorities continue to warn that the strain at the centre of the outbreak is highly contagious and can prove fatal to horses.

They urge horse owners in affected states to avoid all non-essential horse movements, at least until the extent of the outbreak is clearer.


No update for some days. Thirty-three horses were exposed at the Ogden, Utah, cutting horse event at the centre of the outbreak. There are two confirmed cases of EHV-1 infection and one confirmed cases of the neurological form, EHM. One has been euthanized. More at above link.

Horse Slaughter Defunding Language Remains Intact!!

From R.T.Fitch and Equine Welfare Alliance

Update from Vicki Tobin ~ VP of the Equine Welfare Alliance

Moran’s amendment passes!

Congressman Moran’s amendment passed 24 to 21 so the language remains to defund inspections for horses. After the vote, they said the Nays had it but then one of the reps asked for a roll call.While it was a close vote, the House Appropriations committee is always difficult so this was a most welcome victory. We now need to ensure the language stays intact for the full house vote.Thank you all for your support and hard work on this important legislation. We’ll have more details but wanted you to hear the good news.

Monday, May 30, 2011

URGENT ALERT: Calls Needed to Congress TUESDAY to Stop Horse Slaughter!

From Animal Welfare Institute:

May 30, 2011

URGENT eALERT:  Calls Needed TUESDAY in Support of Amendment Keeping Federal Government out of Horse Slaughter Business!

Dear Humanitarian,

Late last week the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee approved the FY2012 Agriculture Appropriations bill.  The language defunding the required USDA inspections of horse slaughter facilities was not included for the first time since 2005, despite strong bipartisan support in Congress.  This first step, if successful, may allow foreign investors the opportunity to reestablish horse slaughter in the US.

At a time when Congress is dramatically cutting back federal spending and eliminating wasteful federal programs, it is disturbing that some in Congress would allow for the reestablishment of a taxpayer subsidized federal program that existed solely to support foreign owned horse slaughter facilities that inflicted tremendous suffering on American horses.


The full House Appropriations Committee will be voting on the FY12 Agriculture Appropriations bill this Tuesday afternoon.  An amendment will be offered to restore the prohibition on putting USDA inspectors in horse slaughter facilities.  Restoring this USDA defund language is important, and it is critical that you call and urge your legislator to support the amendment.

There is time to have your voices heard, but you must act immediately. If your Representative is on the House Appropriations Committee (see list below), they need to hear from you.  These members have supported a ban on horse slaughter so you should remind them of their previous support and urge them to vote in favor of the amendment. Please give them a call first thing Tuesday morning and urge friends, family and coworkers to do the same.

You can call the main Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-2131 and ask to be connected to your Representatives office or you can visit AWI's Compassion Index to find their direct number.

Harold D. Rogers, KY                    C.W. Bill Young, FL
Jerry Lewis, CA                             Frank Wolf, VA
Rodney Frelinghuysen, NJ            Robert B. Aderholt, AL
Ander Crenshaw, FL                     Rodney Alexander, LA
Ken Calvert, CA                            Steve LaTourette, OH
Mario Diaz-Balart, FL                   Charles Dent, PA
Norm Dicks, WA                           Marcy Kaptur, OH
Pete Visclosky, IN                         Nita Lowey, NY
Jose Serrano, NY                           Rosa DeLauro, CT
Jim Moran, VA                               John Olver, MA
Davis Price, NC                             Maurice Hinchey, NY
Lucille Roybal-Allard, CA              Sam Farr, CA
Jesse Jackson, IL                           Chaka Fattah, PA
Steve Rothman, NJ                        Barbara Lee, Ca
Adam Schiff, CA                            Betty McCollum, MN

Agriculture Appropriations:
Retain Language Defunding Federal Inspection of Horse Meat and Horses for Slaughter for Human Consumption

•    On the FY2006 Agriculture Appropriations Bill, Representatives John Sweeney (R-NY), Spratt (D-SC) and Whitfield (R-KY) offered an amendment to eliminate federal funding for the inspection of horsemeat – required by federal law – for horses being slaughtered for human consumption.  This amendment passed 269-158.  The Senate overwhelmingly approved a similar amendment in the Senate sponsored by the late Senator Robert Byrd (D-WV) and Senator John Ensign (R-NV).

•         Funding federal inspection of horse slaughter plants is fiscally irresponsible.  Only foreign corporations, which deal in horsemeat for consumption by wealthy foreign gourmands overseas, would benefit from federal inspection of horse slaughter plants.  Funding these inspections will only benefit foreign markets - at the expense of American taxpayers - and will add to the size of the federal deficit.  Precious federal dollars should be conserved and put to better use by funding worthy domestic programs, including those programs that ensure the safety of food that is consumed in our country.

•         Inspecting horse slaughter facilities is a federal responsibility.  Horse slaughter is a federally regulated industry. Opponents claim that slaughtering horses for human consumption is a states’ rights issue. The slaughtering of any animal for human consumption in the U.S. is a federally regulated process. This is the same for beef, hogs or other livestock (Federal Meat Inspection Act (21 U.S.C. 603); Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 1901). In addition, since horses sent to slaughter come from all 50 states, and horsemeat is not consumed in the U.S., it must be hauled across state lines and the over the U.S. border.  Prior to the closure of the horse slaughter plants in the U.S., very few of the horses slaughtered in a state actually came from that state. Further, if federally-funded inspections were to begin, none of the meat would be consumed in the state where a horse was slaughtered, as we do not consume horsemeat in this country.  Lastly, if a horse slaughter plant were to open in the U.S., the plant would slaughter horses transported across state lines, including horses from states strongly opposed to horse slaughter. A state should have the “right” to protect its own horses from slaughter.

•         Live horses benefit the U.S. economy.  The horse industry (racing, showing, eventing, etc.) bring billions of dollars to the U.S. economy each year.  While selling a 5-year-old horse to slaughter might bring $50 to a killer buyer, and more to the foreign investor, keeping that horse alive and in the local economy will bring far greater return for years to come in income and job growth.

•         Horses sent to slaughter are healthy and robust, not “unwanted.” The USDA estimates that 92.3 percent of the horses being sent to slaughter are healthy and can continue to be productive animals – they are not old or infirm.

•         American horsemeat poses a serious risk to human health. Horses in the U.S. are not raised as food animals, so while their flesh may be considered a delicacy by foreign gourmands, it poses serious risks to human health.  According to a recent Food and Chemical Toxicology report, substances routinely given to American horses cause dangerous adverse effects in humans.  If federally funded inspections were to begin, not only would taxpayer dollars be needed to inspect these facilities, but additional funding would be required to enforce transport regulations and increased food safety testing as required by new European Union mandates.

•    Horse slaughter for human consumption is a cruel process and one that should not be practiced here in the U.S.  Americans do not eat horsemeat. Over 70 percent of the country believes that this is a cruel and unnecessary practice.

•    Approximately 100,000 American horses are exported to slaughter each year. There are 9 million horses in the U.S.  Of the 900,000 horses that die annually, approximately 100,000 are sent to Mexico and Canada for slaughter for human consumption by foreign gourmands.  Despite claims made by horse slaughterhouse lobbyists, each year the same number of American horses are slaughtered that were slaughtered when U.S. based plants were in operation. Our horses are simply being hauled to a location outside of the U.S. for slaughter for human consumption. The closure of the horse slaughter plants in the U.S. have not led to an increase in “unwanted” horses, as the same number of horses are being slaughtered now that were prior to the closure of the plants in the U.S.

•    Slaughter is not humane euthanasia. The average cost to humanely euthanize a horse by a licensed veterinarian is $225, roughly the same cost that it takes to feed and shelter a horse for one month.  Properly euthanizing a horse is not cost-prohibitive and is what the vast majority of Americans choose to do with their horses at the end of their lives.

•    This language must be retained. This defund language has prevented horse slaughter plants in the U.S. from operating, and any new facilities from opening, which is why it is crucial in eliminating this cruel practice in the U.S.  This defund language has been included in every Agriculture Appropriations bill since FY06. Americans taxpayers should not be forced to foot the bill for this unnecessary practice now, or ever.

Thanks for your help.  Be sure to share this eAlert with friends, family and coworkers and encourage them to contact their legislator as well.

Chris Heyde

Deputy Director, Government and Legal Affairs
900 Pennsylvania Ave., SE
Washington, DC 20003

The Animal Welfare Institute has been working to alleviate the suffering inflicted on animals by humans since 1951.
Please join us in our work to protect animals – visit our website to find out more and to sign up for AWI eAlerts: www.awionline.org.

Sunday, May 29, 2011


Humane Observer: Elyse Gardner


Read More and see beautiful pictures of the rich history of the equine in American History. Click here.

Happy Birthday Cloud, For What It’s Worth

Straight from the Horse's Heart

(In My Humble Opinion) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

An Open Letter to Cloud, the Wild Stallion of the Rockies

Photo by Terry Fitch
Happy Birthday Cloud;
On behalf of  all self-actualized and compassionate human beings I would like to extend to you a most heartfelt congratulations, this day, on the advent of your sixteenth year of accompanying us on this voyage across time and space upon the spaceship we call Earth.
Sixteen years ago a wonderful cinematographer and her friend witnessed you entering this world.  At that time you probably had no idea of the mantle of responsibility and notoriety that you would bear upon your withers and soul.  As a young palomino, born wild amongst some of the most wondrous grandeur known on earth, you didn’t have a clue as to your destiny or the part you would play in the trivial game of human ego, greed and cruelty.  And if I had my way, you still would not know.
But like so many of your brethren you were not spared the cruelty of the perverted, special interests of human greed as you were harassed, terrorized, rounded up, imprisoned and ultimately released, unlike tens of thousands of others, to live out your hard life wild but all knowing of what ferments just behind the fa├žade of those who walk on two legs; you know.
You are now the most hated and despised wild horse known to the U.S. Federal Government, specifically the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).  When Ginger Kathrens began to document your life amongst the Pryor Mountains she, unknowingly, gave the plight of American wild horse a story, a face, a name…yours…and with that, there is now a bull’s-eye upon your head, along with that of your benefactor, Ms. Kathrens.
The BLM has foolishly made you a tool of punishment and manipulation as they have inhumanely chased, captured and terrorized you and your family.  If this special interest funded federal agency could make you go away tonight there would be a bullet between your eyes and politically they would do the same to Ginger Kathrens.
You represent all that is good with the American spirit, the sense of freedom and wholesomeness that we once rallied around, but now you are an obstacle and a nuisance that is in the way of the high paying special interests that seek to rape the Pryor’s of their natural resources and line the pockets of the criminals that hold bogus leadership positions within our government and for this, I apologize.
This is not so much a message of cheer but one of apology for the wrongs that have been committed against you and your brethren across the vast expanse of the benevolent horse nation.  On behalf of those who care, we are sorry.
We are sorry for the slaughter, the deaths, the injuries, the broken families, the lies, the deceit, the false promises and most of all, I apologize for being human.  If I had a way or the power to stand beside you as a stallion that honestly loved, cared and protected his family, I would be there.  But my curse pains me to the bone; I am one of them…a liar, a cheat and one who does not speak from the heart.  I am human and for that, I am sorry.
Cloud; you have made a mark that even a bullet and the BLM cannot erase; you are the voice, leader and inspiration for the salvation of our disappearing national icon, the American Wild Horse.  I thank you for what you are, who you are and where you have brought us as if it were not for you and the pain we witnessed you suffer at the hands of Obama’s BLM we would not be in this fight.  Thank you for opening our eyes, thank you for being all that we cannot be and thank you for being alive.
Happy Birthday Cloud, you have changed our lives in more ways than you could ever imagine and you are the engine that drives our advocacy.  Never become a martyr but instead continue to be the most powerful driving force in the animal kingdom focusing the spotlight upon humankind’s most despicable and inhumane behavior; the twisted and corrupt actions of the BLM.
Be strong, Cloud, and above all…be safe.
Happy Birthday!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Texas lab offers EHV-1 testing advice | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

Texas lab offers EHV-1 testing advice | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

BLM Statement on Outbreak of Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1)

Straight from the Horse's Heart

Unedited BLM Press Release
Release Date: 05/26/11
Contacts:Tom Gorey, 202-912-7420
BLM Captive ~ photo by Terry Fitch
The BLM is aware of the recent outbreak of neurologic disease caused by the equine herpes virus (EHV-1) in the Western United States. The Bureau has been working with state and Federal animal health officials to help protect the health and well-being of wild horses and burros on the range, along with those in BLM holding facilities. No BLM-managed wild horses or burros on the range or at BLM facilities are known to have been exposed or affected by the neurologic EHV-1 outbreak at this time. However, the Bureau is consulting and coordinating with animal health officials regarding the movement of wild horses and burros, as well as the scheduling of events such as adoptions that may place horses and burros in contact with horses, burros, or their owners in the domestic horse community. Some lower-risk movements between BLM facilities or BLM facilities and adoption events will continue. Other movements may be cancelled because of concerns regarding potential exposure to EHV-1. At this time, decisions will be made on a local, case-by-case basis in consultation with the BLM’s attending veterinarians and the state veterinarians in the area. All BLM horses and burros that travel interstate do so with valid Certificates of Veterinary Inspection (health certificates) and in accordance with state and Federal animal health regulations. The BLM asks the public to be aware of disease transmission risks and to contact local BLM offices to see if there are any restrictions in place before bringing domestic horses onto BLM-managed public lands.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Mustangs in the clouds (poem)

Absolutely beautiful. A poem by our own Craig Downer.
Tuesday's Horse
Peering over the Pine Nut Mountains
One blustery midsummer afternoon
Back in the roaring ‘90’s,
I beheld seven wild horses
In exquisitely sculpted white cloud forms.
Spanning a thousand feet or more.
Aligned with rumps and flowing tails to West
And gallant heads and flowing manes to East,
These marvels arched over
The windswept 9,000-foot N-S Pine Nut spine.
They leapt in graceful unison
And with the blessed ease
Of pure and liberated spirits.
Though I dashed into my home
To get my camera,
By the time I returned
They had vanished into thin air.
Presences manifest from higher dimension? I ask ye.
Yes, I think so.
For many years since childhood,
I have observed these physically incarnate wonders
Of flesh and bone, hide and mane,
And their more subtle effects.
Through many ups and downs:
Brutal roundups, shootings,
Water and forage deprivations
Perpetuated by greedy, devil-may-care man,
They have endured.
And if ever a group
Deserved to live free
Upon our North American continent
It is they!
These multi-million-year natives are
living symbols of freedom par
excellence shining forth for
all of us to see.
And by allowing them to so live we
In human form shall ourselves from selfishness,
– From pettiness of identification –
Wrest free!
Mustangs in the Clouds, a true experience
By Craig C. Downer
Composed and typed in Carson Valley, Tues. May 17, 2011, 7:30 – 9:00 AM
For “image challenge” reading before Nevada Poetry Society, Sat. May 21, 2011

MORE beautiful images at Tuesday's Horse.

Humanity 4 Horses

11 Horses Dead From Virus - Phoenix News Story - KPHO Phoenix

11 Horses Dead From Virus - Phoenix News Story - KPHO Phoenix

Controlling the wild horse population -- are roundups the solution? | abc7news.com

Controlling the wild horse population -- are roundups the solution? | abc7news.com

Major EHV-1 update: 75 horses confirmed positive, 11 dead | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

Major EHV-1 update: 75 horses confirmed positive, 11 dead | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Wild Horse Advocates Ask BLM to Keep Domestic Horses Clear of Native Mustangs

Straight from the Horse's Heart

Story by Scott Sonner , contributing input by Josh Loftin appearing in multiple sources
Equine Herpes Could Wipe Out the Last Herds Not Yet Destroyed by BLM
Photo courtesy of Terry Fitch
Concerned about the threat of a catastrophic outbreak of a herpes virus among wild horse herds in the West, national animal advocates on Thursday called on the federal government to keep potentially infected domestic horses away from mustangs and burros on public lands.
The Humane Society of the United States urged the Bureau of Land Management to “discourage and, if possible and appropriate, prohibit” owners of private horses from bringing animals at risk of Equine Herpes Virus-1 onto federal lands where they could have contact with wild horses.
“The potential for a catastrophic outbreak of EHV-1 among wild horse herds needs to be addressed by the BLM on an emergency basis,” Holly Hazard, the society’s chief innovations officer, wrote in a letter to BLM Director Bob Abbey.
The federal agency should launch a public education campaign immediately about the highly contagious disease, which has infected dozens of horses and killed at least nine, as officials plan horse-related activities for the upcoming holiday weekend, she said.
EHV-1 poses no risk to humans, but can be fatal to horses. It can be airborne and transmitted by touch or by sharing feed, brushes, bits and other equipment.
The virus “is a highly transmittable disease, and the symptoms don’t show up immediately,” Hazard told The Associated Press.
“You can have a horse that may have been exposed and you are not even aware they are carrying the virus. The most vigilant thing for everybody to do is enjoy their horses on their own property until the health officials have it sorted all out,” she said.
Traced back to a cutting horse competition earlier this month in Ogden, Utah, the virus has been exposed to more than 1,000 animals through direct or indirect contact with infected horses. Symptoms include fever, decreased coordination, nasal discharge, loss of tail tone, hind limb weakness and inability to rise.
So far, no animals managed by the BLM are known to have been infected, BLM spokesman Tom Gorey said Thursday. He said the agency is considering limiting horse movement on a case-by-case basis and may cancel some scheduled adoption events.
The federal agency “has been working with state and federal animal health officials to help protect the health and well-being of wild horses and burros on the range, along with those in BLM holding facilities,” Gorey said.
Horse owners should contact local BLM offices to see if there are any restrictions before bringing domestic horses onto federally managed public lands.
Tom Collins, a Clark County commissioner who owns horses and runs a cattle ranch outside of Las Vegas, said he felt the federal agency generally was taking the proper precautions but that prohibiting domestic horses on public lands in some areas was going too far.
“To tell people not to ride in areas that are public lands because of this horse virus, in my opinion, is a probably a little over cautious,” Collins told AP. “It’s probably more of a reaction to a request by the horse lovers than common sense. But at the same time, I can see their point, because it is airborne.”
Since the virus was discovered, organizers of horse sales, rodeos and other competitions involving the animals have canceled or postponed events in Colorado, Kansas, Oklahoma, Oregon, Montana, Nevada, Utah and Washington. But some other major events are continuing as scheduled, including the College National Finals Rodeo June 11-18 in Casper, Wyo., and the Reno Rodeo June 16-25, billed as the fourth-richest rodeo on the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association.
Animal health officials in Utah and Nevada are among those who are optimistic the worst of the outbreak already has run its course.
“There’s not really anything earth-shaking that’s happened to change what we’re thinking,” Dr. Bruce King, Utah’s state veterinarian, said. “If we can get through the end of the month … we will feel comfortable about holding equine events again.”
But groups including the American Wild Horse Preservation Campaign have joined the call for “an abundance of caution … because of the potential catastrophic consequences that could occur if the virus spreads to the wild horse herds.”
“Given the serious nature of the virus and the already diminished population of mustangs in the west, the BLM needs to act quickly to ensure that the virus does not spread,” campaign spokeswoman Deniz Bolbol said.
Hazard said there are a number of ways a wild horse could contract the disease even if it didn’t have direct contact with an infected animal. For example, domestic horse owners are permitted to have hay on the ground for their horses at campgrounds on BLM lands, national forests and other U.S. lands, she said.
If an infected domestic horse ate that hay, mustangs that frequent campgrounds and other equine recreational areas may move in to eat the contaminated hay leftovers and be exposed to the disease, Hazard said.
“Since EHV-1 infections can be fatal,” she said, “should such a scenario occur, the impacts on wild horse populations could be disastrous.”

EHV-1: States update, federal overview today? | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

EHV-1: States update, federal overview today? | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

Senator Blocks Obama’s Chief Wild Horse Hater’s Pay Raise

Straight from the Horse's Heart

(In My Most Outraged Opinion) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

Louisiana Senator Has Had Enough of Salazar’s BS

Ya gotta love it; you might not agree with why Louisiana Senator David Vitter is blocking former rancher, now Secretary of the Department of the Interior, Ken Salazar’s pay hike but you have to admire him for taking a stand and putting it all out on the table. The good Senator’s privates must clank when he walks because he sure is proving to be made of solid steel as he stands up against this current inept and do nothing administration. Vitter’s reason for denying the government’s Chief Wild Horse Hater from an increase in his salary can be summed up in one simple and to the point quote, “completely unsatisfactory” performance.
Now, of course, Sen. Vitter is speaking to the ridicules and poorly managed response by Salazar to the massive Gulf of Mexico oil spill of last year and the resulting knee-jerk reaction of shutting down all offshore drilling while the country strives for energy independence from mid-east terrorist sponsoring nations. But we wild horse advocates would sure like to get a great big piece of that “Suffer Butthead, Suffer” pie.
Sen. Vitter has in the past been extremely animal/equine friendly, along with his democratic counterpart Senator Mary Landrieu, and it now appears that he has dug his heels in and does not want Obama’s Chief Wild Horse Harasser to receive a $19,000 bump in his annual $180,000 salary so that he can be closer to the $200,000 we currently pay his fellow Cabinet members to screw up the country and not pay a damn bit of attention to the wishes of the American people. Senator Vitter, I love you.
Even under the threat of legal action from the inane Obama administration Vitter spokesman Luke Bolar said:
“I urge the Obama administration to prosecute. They’ll make fools of themselves in court and make my boss a Louisiana folk Hero at the same time.”
I can’t argue with that as regardless of your political persuasion you have to applaud the Senator from Louisiana for standing up to not only one of the most environmentally unfriendly politicians of all time but to an administration that promised us change only to give us more of the same with extra helpings of mediocrity for good measure.
Hats off to you Senator, you might not be able to hear them but the wild horses and burros are applauding you too as they know, as well as us, that Director Salazar is no friend to our national icons and serves only one master, that being the almighty, special interest dollar.
Eat horse poop and hurl, Kenny, you deserve a little bit of your own medicine as millions of us have asked for a moratorium on your bloody wild horse roundups and all you have done is just said “No”. So now it’s our turn, baby, and from across this country we stand behind the Senator and scream from the rooftops with a very loud and eloquent “NO”, in return…you just ain’t worth the friggen money.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Bureau of Land Management To Hold Public Meeting Over Wild Horse Management

KOWB Radio

By: Garrett Adams  |  Yesterday
The Bureau of Land Management has a busy summer ahead. One issue the BLM will be addressing this summer is that of wild horse management. The BLM has scheduled a public hearing in Rock Springs June 21st to gather public input on the issues of horse management in the state of Wyoming.
An easy and efficient way of managing, maintaining and keeping track of  Wyoming’s wild horses is by using helicopters as well as other motorized vehicles. The use of helicopters and other vehicles has brought much criticism and animal rights activists say that using vehicles during roundups is inhumane.  Read MORE...

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Scientists Demand Obama’s BLM Cease Stampeding Wild Horse Foals and Mares

Straight from the Horse's Heart

(The News as We See It) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council
Cruel and Deadly Helicopter Stampedes During Foaling Season Must Stop
Baby Wild Burros Captured and Imprisoned by the BLM ~ photo by Terry Fitch
An Open Letter to the management of the Department of Interior and Bureau of Land Management
Dear Sirs:
As an outraged citizen I am writing you to beg for the mercy of week and
month old babies that will be the victims of the planned Round-ups starting
in July.
The BLM handbook states that round-ups should NOT be conducted during
foaling season. In July there are still mares that are heavily pregnant and
babies that are only weeks old. Even babies that are one or two months old
cannot withstand the miles and miles of running over treacherous terrain.
July is in the middle of foaling season.
These round-ups will undoubtedly result in many foals suffering and dying
and pregnant mares aborting their babies. Babies have died from sloughing
off their hooves before. (during the Calico Roundup)
It is easy to predict, young babies simply cannot withstand the miles and
miles of exerting exercise, their small under-developed feet cannot
withstand the pounding, they cannot go without their mothers milk
especially after this exertion, and the stress and anxiety of separation
from their mothers is extremely inhumane to both mothers and babies.
One would not run one’s own pregnant mare or mare and baby for miles and
miles and expect them to be ok. As a matter of fact one would be arrested
for cruelty to animals.
I do not agree with any BLM Round-ups as there is no independent count of
Wild Horses and the contractors are inhumane and have no knowledge of
natural horsemanship.
However, Round-ups during foaling season take this one more inhumane step
further and are even more callous and willfully cruel and heartless.
Thousands of horse advocates are outraged, Horse organizations are
outraged, my pony club is outraged, my neighborhood is outraged, and the
media is outraged.
Please have mercy and direct the contractors to conduct the Round-ups only
after the foaling season is over. And only when temperatures are not
extreme. I beg of you to order the round-ups to only ever take place during
the months of Sept and October and November, after the summer heat is over,
when the babies are at least 3 months old and before the bitter winter
Most urgently I ask you please, postpone the foaling season roundups!!
Ann M. Marini, Ph.D., M.D.
Robert H. Lipsky, Ph.D.
Sarah M. Lipsky, Licensed M.S.W.

Wyoming Wild Horses in BLM Crosshairs

Straight from the Horse's Heart

(In My Humble Opinion) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

A Million Acres is not Enough for Two Horse Herds

Your Tax Dollars Hard at Work ~ photo by Terry Fitch
You have got it right; the BLM wants to decimate the White Mountain and Little Colorado herds in Wyoming leaving only 274 horses on 1 million acres while allowing 6,000 cattle or 30,000 privately owned sheep to graze on your public lands, does that seem right, hell no!!
Call to Action: The BLM has released the following information –
The Bureau of Land Management has scheduled a public hearing in Rock Springs this summer to gather public input on the use of helicopters and motorized vehicles in the management of Wyoming’s wild horses.
The BLM says it plans to use helicopters to help gather wild and free-roaming horses and to conduct an aerial census. Motorized vehicles would also be used to transport the horses.
Agency officials said earlier this year that an estimated 33,000 wild horses roam freely in 10 Western states. An additional 36,000 horses are cared for in government-funded holding facilities.
Animal rights groups have criticized the roundups as inhumane, but the BLM says they are necessary to thin overpopulated herds that cause ecological damage to rangeland.
The meeting will be held at the agency’s High Desert District Office on June 21.”
Love the way they use “gather” and the annual figure of 33,000 horses that they probably counted from using Google Earth..”Hey Billy Bob, is that a boulder, cow or horse…hell, let’s call it burro for fun!”.
From reading the above release, it appears to me that we have just been invited to a party; that the gauntlet has been thrown down and perhaps we should accept this invitation to voice the truth with as much press as we can muster.  We were there for the horses in Phoenix and although the bogus board did not listen to a word that we said the public certainly did and that is precisely what we need to do here.  We most certainly should take a stand for the horses as I am fed up and don’t intend to just roll over and take it anymore.
Talk it up, chew on it and let’s spit out a plan for “gathering” in Wyoming; between the BLM and “Slaughterhouse” Sue it’s a place that needs a little good karma injected into it for a change.
Wyoming Wild Horses and Burros…here we come!!!

Obama’s BLM Confirms it Will Resume Wild Horse and Burro “Gathers”

Straight from the Horse's Heart

Story by Steven Long ~ Editor/Publisher of Horseback Magazine
Another Season of Injury, Death and Imprisonment to Commence in July

Obama's BLM torturing the last of our wild mustangs ~ photo by Terry Fitch
HOUSTON, (Horseback) – After spending most of the last two years under attack for its wild horse “gathers” in the west, the federal Bureau of Land Management will soon resume the capture and possible extinction of the North American Mustang. The confirmation came early Monday from BLM Chief Washington Spokesman Tom Gorey.
The agency had canceled all of its roundups for the remainder of the year citing a lack of funds to continue. Since Labor Day weekend 2009 when the BLM launched an accelerated schedule of capture on Montana’s Pryor Mountain, hundreds of wild horses have died during and in the aftermath of helicopter driven stampedes.
Gorey says the capture of horses will now resume for the remainder of the  year.
“The Federal government had been operating under several stopgap spending measures (so-called Continuing Resolutions) earlier this year until this month, when Congress passed a longer-term Continuing Resolution that will take us through the remainder of Fiscal Year 2011, which ends Sept. 30,” Gorey said.
“The current Continuing Resolution provides a $12 million increase to the BLM’s Wild Horse and Burro Program (putting the FY 2011 WH&B budget at $75.8 million), thus making it possible for the agency to conduct gathers this summer, starting in July. With the funding issue now resolved, the BLM will be able to carry out this facet of its management responsibilities.  The tentative schedule for this summer’s gathers will be issued soon,” he said.
The Pryor Mountain capture of an iconic Palomino named Cloud who had been the subject of three PBS “Nature” documentaries sparked outrage nationwide and even abroad.
Conservative wild horse advocate and author R.T. Fitch blasted the Congress for wasteful spending by funding the capture of wild horses.
“The U.S. Congress broke it’s promise to reduce unnecessary spending when they not only fully funded the BLM’s 2011 budget but granted them an additional $12 million so that they can now harass, maim, injure, capture and warehouse our last remaining wild horses,” he said.
Earlier BLM Director Bob Abbey said the agency was going in a new direction after appointment of a new interim director of the Wild Horse and Burro Program. Fitch says the director has gone back on his word.
“Bob Abbey, who has admitted that the system does not work, appears to consider a ‘new direction’ to be simply more of the same cruelty and waste.  Taxpaying Americans have lost control of their government,” the author said.
Chicago based Equine Welfare Alliance President John Holland echoed Fitch.
“The BLM faces an inevitable budget crisis over the cost of keeping the horses in long term holding, and yet they never miss an opportunity to make the situation worse,” he said. “Clearly, we are watching the engineering of a disaster. Within a year they will be wringing their hands about what they can possible do with all the horses.”

EHV-1: State by state version III | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

EHV-1: State by state version III | Horsetalk.co.nz - International horse news

Death toll

As at 24.5.2011, 7.03am NZT
New Mexico

Monday, May 23, 2011

Important Health Webinar for Horse Owners Tomorrow: Equine Herpesvirus-1 Outbreak


Equine Herpesvirus-1 Outbreak:
What Horse Owners Need to Know
FREE Webinar Tuesday, May 24 | 8:00 p.m. EST 
The current outbreak of the sometimes fatal neurologic disease caused by equine herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1) in several Western states and Canada has generated widespread concern throughout the horse industry. How many horses are really affected in this outbreak? Is this a new, mutated form of the virus? What are the signs that tell you a horse has EHV-1? Will affected horses recover? How can horse owners and veterinarians work together to prevent the disease from spreading? 

Find out answers to these questions and many more in a timely webinar presented by TheHorse.com and Intervet/Schering-Plough Animal Health for equine veterinarians - Equine Herpesvirus-1 (EHV-1) Outbreak: What Horse  Owners Need to Know. Register now and submit your questions for the live event on Tuesday, May 24, 8:00-9:00 p.m. EST, 5:00-6:00 p.m. Pacific.
This presentation will provide horse owners with an update on the status of the EHV-1 outbreak and current information on EHV-1 disease, testing, how to monitor your horse for disease, and how you can prevent EHV-1 spread with optimal horse management, hygiene, and biosecurity measures.
Register Now
Live-event coverage is limited. To avoid connection problems, register now and attend the online event early.

More HERE.

Arizona horse community rattled by virus scare

Arizona horse community rattled by virus scare

Parelli Response to Equine Herpes May 2011

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Send letters here at Petition2Congress

Target: House of Representatives, John Boehner
Sponsored by: Animal Advocates
There are no facilities in the United States that process horses into food for people- however, tens of thousands of American horses are still trucked into Canada and Mexico every year to be processed into food.

Congress has been considering outlawing the international transport of horses for slaughter (for human consumption). Different bills that would achieve this have come and gone, and even though each one has had strong bipartisan support, none have ever made it to the finish line and become law.

Ask House Speaker John Boehner to allow H.R. 503, the Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act, to be voted on by the full House of Representatives.

House of Representatives

John Boehner

Office of the Speaker
H-232 The Capitol
Washington, DC 20515
Phone: (202) 225-0600
Fax: (202) 225-5117

e-mail: http://www.speaker.gov/contact/

House of Representatives, John Boehner

There are no facilities in the United States that process horses into food for people- however, tens of thousands of American horses are still trucked into Canada and Mexico every year to be processed into food.

Congress has been considering outlawing the international transport of horses for slaughter (for human consumption). Different bills that would achieve this have come and gone, and even though each one has had strong bipartisan support, none have ever made it to the finish line and become law.

Allow H.R. 503, the Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act, to be voted on by the full House of Representatives.

Thanking you,

News Room - AAEP

News Room - AAEP

Equine Advocacy Proves It Has Clout

This is a must-read from R.T Fitch.

Straight from the Horse's heart

(In my most Humble Opinion) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

Collective Honesty Wins Big for the Horses and Burros

I had intended to give you a few Sunday jollies by sharing some of the ludicrous and spiteful hate mail that has come my way supporting bloody, predatory horse slaughter and the BLM’s managed extinction of our American Mustangs and wild burros.  On their face value they are absolutely hilarious as they are “our” best tool in displaying the fact that only the sick and mentally challenged would ever center their lives around the destruction of another species and enjoy seeing it as it circles the drain.  (Look at Sue Wallis and Dave Duquette, they are our best advertisement for the what sort of damage eating drug laden horse flesh can do to the body and mind of a human being )
But as I copied and pasted the smears and perversion into my comments it quickly came to mind that there was nothing funny about such mindsets, at all, hands down, full stop.  In fact, the dark cruelty that such tortured souls ranted on about pulled me down with them as it compelled me to be angry at the lies, flustered at the stupidity and pissed off at the fact that they are members of the same species as I.  So I hit delete; you deserve better than that today and I will have no part of spreading their filth.  Today is a day to celebrate.
You special people won two tremendous victories for the horses, this past week.  You have proven that if enough honest people get behind a thought, a movement, a premise that is right and just, you can make a difference and by God you all surely did just that.
AB329 in Nevada went away thanks to your efforts.  Federally protected wild horses and burros will not be deprived of water by the special interest groups that prowl the capitol and slither across ranges of Nevada.  Those who want to steal your national heritage and the future of your children suffered a setback and were exposed for the thieves and crooks that they are.  Welfare Ranching must go away and it needs to disappear off from our public lands, now.  With the parasitical ranchers gone there may be a glimmer of hope left for the few remaining native wild horses and burros that survive on their designated land.  But in the meantime, we need to keep the fight active.  Good job troops.
HB339 in New Hampshire will now be clarified and equines will be struck from the bill regarding meat inspectors in the state.  This amendment was only made possible by the concerted and diligent efforts of equine advocates and groups who were spurred onto success by the likes of Sue Wallis and Dave Duquette supporting the miswritten earlier bill.  Again, the two lowlifes are the best thing to ever happen to movement to stop equine cruelty, anytime they support something bloody and ugly the sanity of the nation kicks in and literally kicks them in the ass…and trust me;    that is a target that is hard to miss.  Good on ya’ all, another great victory.
So please; take the day off, pour yourself a great big, ice cold Wrangler Iced Tea (write if you would like the recipe), revel in the moment and hug a horse because I am here to tell ya, if the horses of America could collectively give you all one huge, group hug, they would be doing it.
Drink heartily and bask in the warm glow of justice, honesty, and common sense as tomorrow is another day on the new path we are cutting to save the equines of America, it truly is not work for the weak or squeamish.
The ‘Force of the Horse©’ is obviously with all of you.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Horse shows canceled due to virus scare

Horse shows canceled due to virus scare

USDA Releases Initial EHV-1 Situation Report

From Arabian Horse Association

In response to the on-going Equine Herpes Virus (EHV-1) and Equine Herpes Virus Myeloencephalopathy (EHM) disease incidents from an event in Ogden, Utah held from April 29 to May 8, 2011, USDA has compiled individual state EHV-1 reports and released the initial national EHV-1 situation report. A summary of the current situation is as follows:
  • Owners of horses known to have been exposed in this incident have been contacted by State Animal Health Officials.
  • Suspect and confirmed cases are reported to be under voluntary or state quarantine.
  • Known exposed horses are reported to be under either voluntary or state quarantine.
  • A total of 21 confirmed EHV-1 cases and 12 confirmed EHM cases have been reported in 8 states (CA, CO, ID, NM, OR, TX, UT, WA).
  • Of the 33 total confirmed EHV/EHM cases, 32 cases are horses that were at the initial event.
  • There are 7 horses associated with this incident that are dead or have been euthanized.
The complete USDA EHV-1 Situation Report is available here. The AHC anticipates USDA releasing the next national situation report at the end of next week. In the interim, the AHC stresses the importance of responsible ownership practices and informed communication among industry organizations. Please see the below links for additional information on EHV-1 transmission risks and disease mitigation strategies.

Additional Resources

USDA-APHIS website:
EHV information sheets, color brochures, historical information, a review of disease mitigation strategies, and an EHV-1 guidance document (which will be available later today) "Recommendations for Horses Exposed to EHV-1 or EHM" can be found on the USDA-APHIS website at the following link:

AAEP website:
General EHV resources through the American Association of Equine Practitioners:

Neurologic Disease Guidelines:

Equine Herpes Virus:

Biosecurity Guidelines:

Biosecurity Instructions for Caretakers - English & Spanish:

National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) website:
For history of the current outbreak and additional outreach materials:

ACVIM Consensus Statement on EHV-1:

Friday, May 20, 2011

Wild Horses in Nevada Catch a Break

Straight from the Horse's Heart

(The News As We See It) by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/Director of HfH Advisory Council

“Welfare Ranchers” Shoot Selves in Foot

Update:  SFTHH has just received a phone call that Nevada Legislators did not pass the controversial bill AB329 which would have stripped wild horses and burros of their “wildlife” classification and left them without access to water in the one of the country’s most arid states.
Originally proposed by a group of special interest welfare ranchers the bill went to great lengths to identify wildlife from antelopes to mollusks and attempted to point out that, in their opinion, wild horses and burros did not fit into the wildlife criteria even though they have been documented as wildlife for centuries if not for ions.
Welfare ranchers are allowed, at taxpayers’ expense, to graze their private cattle upon federal public lands, designated by law to the wild horses and burros, for a mere $1.35 cents a month per animal.  Their collective feeling of “entitlement” has put them at odds with the voting public of the United States as the group strives to hoard public resources for personal gain, water being one of those resources.  The federally protected wild horses are seen by the ranchers as a threat to said resources and, to date, they have done everything from crawl into bed with the Bureau of Land Management to initiating bogus legislation in an effort to rid our public ranges of our national icon, the American wild horse.
Thanks to all of the individual advocates and groups who helped to present the facts to the law makers of the state of Nevada.  Special thanks to Simone Netherlands and Laura Leigh for their individual input to this report and for taking a stand, clear evidence that collective voices, speaking reason, can make a difference.  The horses have finally caught a break.

Update from Simone Netherlands:

Nevada State Senator Manendo
At the committee vote on AB329 today Senator Manendo said: “I see no reason why this legislation is necessary.”
Senator Manendo was not fooled by the proponents of AB329 and said that there was a contradiction in their testimony.
He said that there were not enough facts presented and that the bill was a point of contention. The proponents claim that the wild horses and burros could still get water, and the State engineer mentioned that there were other avenues in which the wild horses and burros could get water rights.
However if it excludes Wild horses and Burros from the designation Wild Life from which they gain water rights through beneficial use, than what is the point of this piece of legislation, he asked.
“Because they are federally protected, if we as a state deny the horses and burros water, we set ourselves up for cruelty without gaining anything for the state, that is not the image that we want to portray. I see no compelling reason why this bill is needed.”
However he advised that a longer look may be needed to take a look at the facts and details of this bill. He wrote a draft letter and in the interim (which is in September) the public lands committee may further discuss this bill.
In the draft letter however, he states that it was a contentious piece of legislation and that over 2 hours of contradicting testimony was heard.
He also stated that over 10,000 people contacted his office that is an incredible number! When the horse advocates had not heard about this bill, and no one was there to give testimony, this same bill actually passed the state senate by an overwhelming majority!
This was a great example of how we all can come together and really truly makes a difference in legislation.
Now on to the next task, let’s come together in the same big way and get this summers foaling seasons Round-ups to cease and desist!!

BLM plans to remove 1225 horses from Wyoming this summer

Tuesday's Horse

The BLM has released its Environmental Assessment for the Great Divide Basin Area which is a wild horse management area near Rock Springs, Wyoming. The BLM estimates that there are currently 1700 horses in this area, and they plan to remove 1225 wild horses this summer.
Please send comments about the destruction of yet another Wyoming herd:
Here is the link to the documents:
Here is the mailing address and email address that comments need to be sent to by June 20:
Great Divide Basin Scoping Comments
BLM Rock Springs Field Office
280 Highway 191 North
Rock Springs, WY 82901
(Please list “Divide Basin EA Comments” in the subject line.)   More HERE.