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The Horses are Calling: Please Help Canadians Strengthen Animal Anti-Cruelty Law

Dear Fellow Storytellers & Animal Lovers,

You know I am a passionate advocate of animal rescue. In fact, most of my stories are based on my experiences with animals. I moderate the Animal Stories Group.

I'm working on the campaign to end horse slaughter in Canada, and need your help. Inhumane, assembly line slaughter has been an easy and profitable solution for irresponsible horse owners for too long.

An historical Bill to end horse slaughter has been tabled by my fellow Ukrainian, Member of Parliament Alex Atamanenko. We need your help to see Bill C-544 pass into law.

I was just a horse crazy 12 year old when I saw a rental string I'd cared for all summer, go to slaughter at tourist season's end. Can you imagine what this did to a loving child's heart?

I ended up managing a Thoroughbred stud farm, where I learned my beloved broodmares and stallions would be slaughtered when their fertility waned.This was also the fate of my babies with damaged knees (cruelly, horses are raced from the age of two) or a case of the "slows." The many thousands of dollars they'd earned their owners made no difference to their horrific end.

Kentucky Derby winner Ferdinand and Racing Hall of Famer Exceller each met their deaths in a slaughter house. Their commemorative plaques do not mention this.

I unwittingly participated in sending my Appaloosa colt to slaughter. I sold him to a "nice family" without a first option contract. By the time I checked up on Big Red, he was gone on the kill truck.

Do you know where your first horse ended up? What about those wonderful ponies in the park? Where do all the many stolen horses go? As long as slaughter is legal, no horse is safe.

I live with a lot of nightmares. Asking you to help Canadians stop the insanity is the least I can do for the horses who have enriched my life.

We are killing over 100,000 horses a year in Canada. Their meat is shipped to Asian and European dinner tables. The slaughter plants are mainly financed by foreign investors.

Many horses are pouring over the border from the US. They travel for days on double deckers, with no food, water, rest or cooling system. They travel on broken legs and with grave wounds. Despite the illegality, pregnant mares are routinely shipped. Stressed, they abort or give birth in the kill truck, sometimes even on the bloody kill floor. If foals do not have enough "meat," we have evidence they are run over with trucks or thrown live on the gut pile.

The foals that pass muster, are killed for "foal sushi" and "foal veal."

Because workers are required to perform an immense number of kills per day, they work in assembly line fashion. This is partially automated. One third of horses suffer butchering and amputation while conscious.

Environmental atrocities abound. As a horse is not a food animal, their bodies hold twice as much blood as a cow's. Last year, the Natural Valley slaughter plant in Saskatchewan was closed, partly due to millions of gallons of blood being dumped in the local water supply. Along with the cruelty of slaughter, environmental violations helped lead to the closing of all US slaughter plants in 2008.

The Bill to stop horse slaughter in Canada will go to debate in September, so time is short. Parliament is the same thing as Congress. MP Alex Atamanenko (same as a Senator), tabled Bill C-544 on June 16th.

If you would kindly pass my post on to any Canadian connection you can think of, those of us working to stop slaughter would be immensely grateful.

The exact wording of the Bill is at www.defendhorsescanada.org The site also explains the Parliamentary process, and how to be sure your message gets heard. There's a downloadable petition under the Bill's text, as well as links to MPs.

A Canadian can also phone any MP's office to find out who to write. Write to your own MP, not to many. If you feel ambitious, write to the authorities in charge of Agriculture and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency. Contact info is on the same website.

1. In Canada, petitions MUST be submitted in hard copy, signed in INK with each person's name, address, postal code and signature. The paper must be letter size.

Each signee must be a Canadian citizen.

The petition must be worded EXACTLY as Bill C-544.


The wording must be repeated on EACH PAGE of the petition.

Omitting one step can completely void your petition. I've had this happen in the past.

You can't submit a petition just saying something like, "Horses are suffering, stop it." This is a rigid political process, governed by strict rules and conservative people.

2. Online petitions are not admissible, and in fact detrimental. Politicians routinely delete them as SPAM. Please please please do not start online petitions. They siphon away energy and support that is desperately needed for effective action.

3. Writing to an MP personally is highly recommended.

Humane Society International
has an email form that takes your full contact info, and looks up your MP for you. This form IS admissible. HSI has written a form letter. I urge you to draw from their text and personalize it. http://e-activist. com/ea- campaign/clientcamp aign.do?ea. client.i...

4. You can also email or write your MP on your own. Please make sure to use the WORDING of Bill C-544. We're all furious and sad about this outrage, but ranting and name calling are not useful. Do not cast aspersions on the slaughter house workers' morals, etc. Keep it factual.

The point is to get career politicians to say, "Yes!" to the Bill
---not to blow off steam.

Your email or letter needs to contain your full contact info, so the MP can verify you are one of their constituents.

5. If any of your connections don't understand the inhumanity of the slaughter process, there are videos and written veterinary testimony here: www.defendhorsescanada.org

Do a search for the CBC national TV news feature on the slaughter process, called "No Country for Horses." www.CBC.ca

6. If you need to explain the horrors of kill truck transport, the US Food and Drug Administration has released photos. Please view with caution. The suffering is so severe and prolonged, and the transporters so lacking in common decency---as to be unimaginable.

Despite a lifetime with animals and working as a veterinary assistant, I blacked out in front of my computer. www.kaufmanzoning. net

7. The horse is one of our national symbols, along with O Canada and the maple leaf. I have grave concerns about what slaughter is doing to our collective soul. Horse slaughter is an international shame on many levels. What opinion would the world express if Americans were slaughtering 400 eagles a day---and shipping their meat overseas?

www.pch.gc.ca/ pgm/ceem- cced/ symbl/101/103- eng.cfm

8. Speaking of national soul: seizing and slaughtering our horses was one of the first aggressive acts Stalin committed against my family (and many others) in Ukraine. It tore the heart right out of us. Though my father found refuge in Canada, he never handled horses again. He just watched his daughters ride, with a wistful expression.

8. Whatever your opinion of the Europeans and Asians who eat horse meat: Against EU regulations, Canada routinely ships meat loaded with toxins. Horses are treated as pets and sport animals. We administer: vaccines, wormers, antibiotics, diuretics, anti-inflammatories, painkillers, etc. There is no record of most of these treatments. We horse people are self reliant types. We buy a box of meds for the barn, and administer when necessary---often without vet involvement. I have administered most of the above toxins since my early teens.

The health of generations of Europeans could be affected by the toxic horse meat industry.

8. My American friends, please join in the HSUS, Equine Welfare Alliance and Americans Against Horse Slaughter campaigns that are working to ban the transport of horses to Canadian and Mexican slaughter houses.

And if you know a Canadian celebrity who cares about animals, please ask them to speak up. Heck, an American celebrity would be great. I have written to a rescue foundation on whose board Robert Duvall and Roseanne Barr sit: Heart for Horses. No word yet.

I thank you from the bottom of my horse loving heart
for passing
on this information. Time is so short until September's Parliamentary debate. I pray for every horse in the feed lots and kill boxes.

Please don't be offended if you see a similar post in other groups. Time is short and horse advocates are working like mad to get as many people involved as possible.

EDITED TO ADD: My goodness, I just received a response from Madeleine Pickens, who is working to save America's mustangs with hers and T. Boone's Texas oil fortune:

from Madeleine Pickens <madeleine.pickens@gmail.com>
to lessons@reisastone.com
date Tue, Jul 20, 2010 at 4:15 PM
subject Saving America's Mustangs
signed-by gmail.com

hide details 4:15 PM (15 minutes ago)

Keep fighting. Keep spreading the word. Thank you so much for your support.
http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#!/profile.php?id=1573036270
Please add me.

xo Madeleine


Sincerely,
Reisa Stone
Vancouver, BC
Canada
www.reisastone. com

Life is as dear to the mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants
happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not to die, so
do other creatures. ~ His Holiness The Dalai Lama

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Tags: AQHA, BillC-544, Canadaslaughter, QuarterHorse, Thoroughbred, animalabuse, animalcruelty, animalrescue, horseauction, horserescue, More…horses, horseslaughter, horsetransport, killtruck, petabuse, petcruelty, ponies

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