Saturday, December 31, 2011

Straight from the Horse’s Heart 2011 in Review

Straight from the Horse's Heart

All our Stable-hands have been busy building this report for you!!!

Here’s an excerpt:
London Olympic Stadium holds 80,000 people. This blog was viewed about 600,000 times in 2011. If it were competing at London Olympic Stadium, it would take about 8 sold-out events for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Sgt. Reckless and Fearless at Camp Pendleton

Friday, December 30, 2011

“Real” War Horse Shares Screen with Spielberg’s

Straight from the Horse's Heart

News Bulletin by the Equine Welfare Alliance

EWA Takes the Anti-Horse Slaughter War to the Masses

Sgt. Reckless...the REAL War Horse
First, our sincere thank you to all of you that made this campaign possible. Your generosity was overwhelming. We’d also like to send profound thanks to Valerie Kennedy and Mark Traverso of SCITV Productions for their tireless work on meeting impossible deadlines and Robin Hutton of the Sergeant Reckless Memorial Fund for joining us and “loaning” Reckless to the campaign.
Our first attack on those who betrayed our horses has landed. It will leverage the movie War Horse.
We teamed up with Robin Hutton of the Sgt. Reckless Memorial Fund and today, the ad below will appear on 90 theater screens within 10 minutes of the start of the movie War Horse. The ad will be aired in selected theaters in the following states: North Eastern Georgia, Missouri, Wisconsin, Montana and Wyoming. Why those states, you ask? Very simple – Kingston, Blunt, Kohl, Baucus and Wallis! The ad will run for 30 days.
We were able to pretty well saturate Kingston’s district but we are only able to hit the best attended theaters in the states of the senators involved.
The theaters would not allow political adds so we are presenting this ad that will direct them to the below sites exposing what their legislators have done. This video is currently a low resolution copy of the HD version that the audience will view. [We purchased this domain so that moviegoers would have an easy name to remember]
If this works, it will bring in more money to further expand the coverage. This is not the end. We want to send a message that if you betray our horses we will haunt you to the ends of the earth. We will continue to attack these individuals as long as we have resources and they are in office.
Soon, we will be able to unveil our other plans for attacking this vile industry.

Real War Horse - Sgt. Reckless

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Animal Rescue Site helps to Ban Horse Slaughter! Take Action!

Animal Rescue Site

Horses: Slaughtered For Their Meat?

Don't allow the slaughter of horses for meat to resume in the United States!
Horses: Slaughtered For Their Meat?
Goal: 15,000 • Progress: 6,419
Sponsored by: The Animal Rescue Site
About five years ago, horse slaughter opponents enacted a ban on funding horse meat inspections in order to discourage inhumanely killing the horses for their meat.
But Congress lifted that ban in a recent spending bill — an action that could pave the way for horse meat slaughterhouses to reopen in the United States. Though horse meat consumption in the United States has been virtually nonexistent for decades, it remains a delicacy in other countries.
The lift of the ban means that slaughterhouses will be permitted to kill horses and ship the meat overseas for exorbitant costs. And slaughter proponents are touting the economic benefits of lifting the ban in light of the recession.
Hundreds of thousands of horses could be slaughtered soon. Tell President Obama to reconsider lifting the ban on horse meat inspections.

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Dear President Obama,
You recently signed a bill that would lift the ban on horse meat inspections that has protected horses from slaughter for the past five years. Now, however, horses are in grave danger as slaughterhouses could reopen any day.
While most of us don't consider horse meat to be a viable food option, many people in other cultures and parts of the world consider it to be a delicacy. There is a considerable market for horse meat, and that's why lifting this ban is so dangerous.
Horses are not meant to be slaughtered — or eaten for that matter. Please do the right thing for the horses and reverse your decision to lift the ban.
Thank you.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

14 Year Old Campaigns to Save U.S. Horses

Straight from the Horse's Heart

Letter by Cheyenne Little as it appears in The Union of Grass Valley, CA

How can someone so young get it so right?

Cheyenne Little, 14 years old, and her China
My name is Cheyenne Little, I’m a 14-year-old girl who lives in Grass Valley. You might remember me as the kid who wrote the “More than a little help” article a few months back.
My horse China’s doing great, I’m doing great. But there’s one thing that’s not so great. And I’m asking for the help and support of my community to change that status.
I recently started a petition against the reopening of equine slaughter in the U.S. Before equine slaughter was made illegal in 2007, over 25,000 horses each year were being processed and shipped out of the country for human consumption.
Perfectly healthy, well trained, young horses were being killed. Horses just like China. That doesn’t seem very fair.
Slaughtering horses is a lot different from slaughtering cows and pigs. For one, their skulls are much thicker. When shot they are not actually dead. In Mexico, they are stabbed in the back and wither until paralyzed. Or their jugular veins are cut so they bleed to death.
Worst of all, for the meat to be considered human consumption grade, they must begin gutting the horse within a certain amount of seconds. The horses are still alive when they are hung, sliced open, and gutted. They can feel all of it. There’s currently no way for the horses to be pronounced dead before the allotted time is up.
The conditions that the horses are kept in before being slaughtered is cruel. They are loaded onto trucks and shipped with tons of horses kicking and biting them for hours on end. When they are unloaded, they must stand in manure where their able to smell their friends being taken away, being destroyed one by one.
A common misconception is that racehorses and old crippled horses dominate slaughter houses. That’s not true. Outgrown ponies, unbreedable mares, backyard geldings, and best friends whose owners have moved on to college surround the young, healthy horses in the small corrals.
Horses just like China end up being butchered for 80 cents per pound (2011 rates) and eaten in foreign countries. If China had turned out to be dog food, I would still be looking for my dream horse.
I wouldn’t have known that I was born to become a large animal vet. I would still be looking for a purpose. China gave me one. And right now my purpose is to stop the abuse going on in equine slaughter houses.
My online petition’s goal is to stop equine slaughter in the U.S., but already it’s gone worldwide. People in Germany, Australia, and more are signing it.
My petition is for the U.S., so why are people from different countries supporting it? Because people all over the world think it’s wrong! Horses are pets and best friends. I’ve seen children who are unable to take a step ride a horse for an hour twice a week and be able to walk for 15 minutes after each session.
What horses are used in therapeutic riding? Slaughter horses. Old, worn out, 30-year-old horses that are now just costing money to feed. If that horse had gone to slaughter that kid wouldn’t be able to walk. Slaughter is a cause everyone is fighting against, together. As a community, state, country, and apparently world.
So what am I asking? Please look at my blog at
There’s a link to my online petition where you can sign your name. Then what? E-mail, Facebook, and Twitter out the link to as many people as possible using the share button located on the page. And be sure to check out the blog frequently for updates and to see videos.
Each signature counts and yours really does help. The horses can’t talk so we have to be their voices. It takes just 60 seconds to sign your name and help end the cruelty in the equine slaughter houses.
For more information on ending equine slaughter in the U.S., please be sure to visit my blog.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

'War Horse' not a 'war' movie, Spielberg says


As for “War Horse,” Spielberg said he hopes the movie raises people's awareness and encourages them to be kinder to animals.
“In this day, people don't have exposure, they don't have interaction with horses,” he said. “I hope this movie makes people appreciate the innate and natural intelligence of horses. And I also hope this movie brings an awareness to the plight of horses both after World War I and the plight today in a very sad turn of events in which the slaughtering of horses is being permitted for food as a renewed export industry, which makes us all very sad.”

PETA Gets on Board with Horse Slaughter Ban

Act Now to Save Horses From Slaughter!
Each year, more than 130,000 U.S. horses are crammed into trailers and trucked to slaughterhouses in Canada and Mexico—and now they are being slaughtered in the U.S. as well. After a long and frightening journey, these horses are shot with a rifle or a captive-bolt gun, are hoisted by one leg into the air, and have their throats slit so that their flesh can be sold to other countries for human consumption.

Thoroughbred racehorse Coming Home was hours from being trucked to a slaughterhouse when a PETA investigator rescued her. PETA found a permanent home for this gentle mare, but the fate of tens of thousands of other cast-off racehorses is terrifying and gruesome. The American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act of 2011 (S. 1176/H.R. 2966) would prohibit shipping, transporting, moving, delivering, receiving, possessing, purchasing, selling, or donating horses and other equines for human consumption. If passed, it would effectively end the use of U.S. horses for food—both here and abroad.

Please tell your members of Congress today that you support the American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act of 2011 (S. 1176/H.R. 2966) and urge them to vote in favor of this critically needed legislation. 

CLICK HERE to Take Action! 

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Double Talk and Dancing: BLM Can’t Spin Fast Enough

Straight from the Horse's Heart

OpEd by R.T. Fitch ~ Author/President of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

BLM Starting to Sweat over Upcoming “Inhumane Care” Hearing

BLM's Sun-J Helicopter over horses ~ photo by Laura Leigh
On December 7th, 2011 (Pearl Harbor Day) the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued a report on an internal investigation put forward to supply a response to a Federal Judge presiding over a law suit alleging inhumane care and treatment of wild horses and burros from helicopter roundups all the way to long-term holding and the one and only singular plaintiff in that case was and still is Ms. Laura Leigh, Vice President of the Wild Horse Freedom Federation (WHFF).  Sitting alone in a Reno Nevada Federal courtroom with her attorney Gordon Cowen and the backing of WHFF Leigh came before the Honorable Judge McKibben and stated her case regarding the observed acts of alleged cruelty displayed by the BLM and their contractors against the country’s wild horses and burros as they were rounded up on protected public land.
Ms. Leigh had a mountain of visual documentation but the straw that broke the camel’s back was her now well-known video of the BLM contractor’s helicopter pilot actually using the skid of his aircraft to strike a very tired and disoriented wild horse.  That singular video was the spark that lit the fire that the BLM is now having difficulty putting out as the case is still active and a hearing is scheduled for late next month.
Allegations of cruelty have been made against the BLM in the past; for years tax paying American citizens have been documenting, complaining and suing the BLM over their aggressive actions and alleged violations of the law and not one thing has been done about it regardless of the integrity of the complainants or the quality of the documentation and the end result has always been the same, BLM – 7 / Horses and Burros – 0.  So what’s different with this case?  The BLM disrespected a Federal Judge.
Just as they have continually done in the past the BLM sauntered into the courtroom, looked down their noses at the lone plaintiff and proceeded to arrogantly and unequivocally brush off any wrong doing and actually pointed a finger at the horses for being at fault.  The single-minded, self-centered arrogance did not find favor with the judge; he stated that the declaration by the BLM was not what he observed in the video as he could see an exhausted animal and the pilot apparently making contact. He said he did not appreciate the “blame the horse” direction of the Defendant’s statements.
“I am deeply concerned,” Judge Mckibben stated to Eric Petersen, BLM’s legal counsel, “that declarations presented to the Court by the Agency do not address the issue, but simply deny wrong doing.”
Even though the BLM’s hand-picked investigative team was either a BLM employee or BLM friendly associate the allegations of cruel and unnecessary treatment was brought forward in the BLM’s own investigation’s final report.
The BLM has been turned so upside down by Leigh’s legal action that the agency recently had the head of their Nevada bureau, Amy Lueders , call upon all BLM employees and contractors to police each other and call out any acts of cruelty or inhumanity as the public trust has been deeply eroded by documented evidence, Leigh’s video and her ongoing litigation.  When asked if this “to little- too late” posturing of the BLM will have any improvement on conduct Laura Leigh stated,
“Without any parameters of repercussion for abuse the BLM employees that want change will feel just as hesitant as always to report it. They need a system that protects them (for doing the right thing) from repercussions from those doing the “wrong things.” They need it as badly as we do.”
Leigh holds high hopes for the outcome of her case and feels that overall it will be a win/win for the horses and burros.
“We have been fighting to get the attention of the BLM and through the watchful eye of Judge McKibben I feel that we have finally gotten it.”, said Leigh, “This could prove  to be good lesson for the advocate community as this case is valid proof that our judicial system does work; you simply have to get it right from the gitgo.”
Leigh reported that the Wild Horse Freedom Federation will soon be issuing a news release with details on not only the hearing for the “Humane Care” case but also a scheduled hearing for the much publicized and heralded “First Amendment” litigation.
“We have got their attention so now is the time to set things right for the horses”, Leigh concluded, “That’s what it always has been and always will be about; it’s simply all about the horses and the burros.”

Monday, December 26, 2011

Everything You Wanted to Know about “War Horse” but were Afraid Ask

Straight from the Horse's Heart

By R.T. Fitch ~ Author/President of Wild Horse Freedom Federation

Links, Reviews and Stories on Equine Epic

As of late it has been a difficult ride for the horses of the United States of American, both domestic and wild.  From the gaff of language being stripped from an Ag bill that defunded horse slaughter plant inspections and then signed by the President to the rapid, cruel and possibly unlawful trapping and removal of protected wild horses and burros from public lands by Obama’s BLM; things have been bleak and looked like they were heading south, until…enter stage left, Steven Spielberg with his latest epic film War Horse.  If ever the American public needed to be informed on the plight of the American horse it is now and Mr. Spielberg just opened up that conversation on Christmas Day.
Although I have yet to see the film, myself, I am certain that the story telling of Spielberg will shine a positive note on the heart and spirit of our equine companions.  As crooked politicians on the take plan on killing our horses for their meat and the BLM Chopper Pilots run our wild ponies into the dust this film will help to ignite a flame in the heart of the American public and shine a bright light of honesty and decency on the horse eaters and pony trappers of the world.  A conversation of awareness has begun and it is up to us to fan the flame of advocacy and inform, enrich and coach those who are unaware of the anti-horse forces that move amongst us.  The tide may have shifted.
To help fuel your interest and promote your insight we have been collecting links to stories, reviews and informative articles that center on the story of the movie War Horse and those who star in it.
Below you will find a wealth of links that we have carefully tucked away for your perusal so sit back, enjoy and click away.  By the time you finish the tour you may find that you know more about the movie than those who have already seen it.  Enjoy and keep the faith.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Friday, December 23, 2011

USDA Has Disproportionate Influence on BLM Wild Horse Board

Horseback Magazine

December 23, 2011
By Steven Long
Photo by Laura Leigh
HOUSTON, (Horseback) – The United States Department of Agriculture has an unusually stout influence over appointments to the Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board of the federal Bureau of Land Management. The giant cabinet department that serves the needs of farmers and ranchers has veto power to appointments to the panel that oversees equine wildlife management on BLM lands.
“It’s in the board’s charter but is not in a statute,” said Tom Gorey, BLM chief Washington Spokesman. The charter was updated in July, 2010.
While the board’s responsibility is not to set policy, but to advise, the Wild Horse and Burro panel has served as a rubber stamp for BLM “gather” policy that has resulted in the capture, killing, and holding of tens of thousands of wild animals in giant pastures at taxpayer expense. The policy has cost so much in   that the federal agency depletes its entire $60 million wild horse budget each year. Often, as soon as horses are removed they are replaced by cattle.
Last year hundreds of horses died in the “gathers” including one in Nevada during the dead of winter. Typically, the horses are stampeded by helicopter into a trap. One foal ran so hard during a chase it lost its hooves and died. The agency is the subject of several lawsuits in different jurisdictions over alleged inhumane treatment of the animals, and denial of access to press and public access its captures. Recently allegations have surfaced that BLM vets routinely castrate stallions without the benefit of anesthesia.
Asked how the USDA, and by extension the ranching industry, got veto power over a wildlife board in the first place, Gory responded saying, “The charter was renewed (and possibly revised) during the late 1990s when Pat Shea of Utah was BLM Director. The reason USDA is involved is that the Forest Service manages a small number (2,000 or so) of wild horses and burros, in accordance with the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act of 1971.”
Wild horse advocates claim that more than a million cattle graze on BLM lands, much of which is covered under the Free Roaming Wild Horse and Burro Acto of 1971, the “Wild Horse Annie Law.” Stockmen lease BLM land at the below market price of $1.35 per cow and calf per month. Yet Gorey was unable to provide Horseback the exact number of animals grazing under lease.
“We manage cattle in accordance with the provisions of the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, and the Public Rangelands Improvement Act of 1978.” He told Horseback Magazine. “We don’t count head of cattle but do keep track of forage used. In Fiscal Year 2010, livestock consumed 8.2 million forage units, known as animal unit months. Since most grazing is seasonal, the way to estimate the number of livestock grazing on BLM land year-round is to divide 8.2 million by 12 (months). For more info, see our grazing page on in our “What We Do” section.”
Three board members terms expire January 8, 2012. They include Robyn Lohnes, a controversial appointee who operates the Washington based American Horse Protection Association, Dr. Boyd Spratling, a Nevada vet from the extremely rural town of Deeth, and Janet Jankura of Richfield, Ohio.

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Bid to honour heroic war horse with a statue


Her name was Sergeant Reckless, and she ranks as one of America's greatest war heroes for her deeds during the Korean war. Sergeant Reckless on duty during the Korean war. Now, a fundraising effort is under way to build memorials to honour the small Mongolian mare, whose efforts were instrumental to the frontline efforts of US Marines.


Sergeant Reckless on duty during the Korean war.