Proposal would brand horses treated with Bute

3 Dec

I don’t see why this wouldn’t work to save horses from the slaughter plants, that are loved and cared for properly. Even if the kill-buyers buy them to transport to slaughter, how can the slaughter plants ignore the permanent brand and it’s meaning?  The abbattoires in Mexico and Canada would need to be notified as well as the border inspectors to reject horses with this brand.

Proposal would brand horses treated with Bute

By  on December 3, 2013

Texas-based T’bred advocate Donna Keen recently announced an innovative idea to save horses from the slaughter pipeline, long before they’re endangered.

The CEO of Remember Me Rescue is proposing to both industry leaders and influencers alike, that identification be painlessly branded on the left, front shoulder of any horse treated with one of 17 medications routinely given to horses, which are that are banned in meat consumed by humans.

Keen argues that branding, which was an idea put forth by California-based Thoroughbred advocate Deb Jones in a conversation between the two, would prove unequivocally that a horse has been treated with substances, such as phenlybutazone (Bute), a substance that remains in the horseflesh long after it is administered, and is considered dangerous in humans.

Says Keen, “The people in Europe don’t want to eat meat that has been treated with substances like Bute, but in some cases they’ve been lied to and told that their meat is safe, when it isn’t.”

She proposes that racehorse owners place an indelible “freeze” brand on their horse the very moment the animal is treated with a substance that is banned for human consumption, and that the information be stored in a national database that would detail the horse’s name, tattoo number, provide photos of the animal, as well as the name of the attending veterinarian, the date the drug was administered, and the name of the owner at that time.

Donna with a gentle friend

Donna with a California-bred Yeah Me Do, age 30

The branding process would be voluntary, and already at least one racing company has promised to brand all of its horses, she says.

Keen notes that MidWest Thoroughbreds owner Richard Papiese has already indicated his enthusiasm for a branding system.

The idea is being proposed to Thoroughbred industry representatives, and a database developer has been retained to start building a website, Keen says.

“People need to look at it as a badge of honor to keep their horse from being slaughtered,” Keen says. “People will try to get around it. But a brand is going to slow down the number of horses going to slaughter, from crossing the border, or being purchased by meat buyers.”

Noting that there are 17 legal medications commonly given to racehorses that are banned from human food, Keen says a brand given at the time the first drug is administered could save that horse from the slaughterhouse.

“Any horse that has ever received even one dose of Bute is banned for life from being slaughtered for human consumption,” she says. “I personally do not know of a horse that has not ever been treated for a high temperature, a mild colic, or given Bute as an anti-inflammatory. Track veterinarians tell me that most horses at the racetrack have been given Bute.”

Read the whole story -> Proposal would brand horses treated with Bute.


7 Responses to “Proposal would brand horses treated with Bute”

  1. Susan Crane-Sundell (@sabaahslight) December 3, 2013 at 3:22 pm #

    “Any horse that has ever received even one dose of Bute is banned for life from being slaughtered for human consumption,” she says.

    Pardon me but “banned for life”? I think the speaker means banned from DEATH designated for human consumption.

    I think what the speaker meant is:

    “Any horse that has ever received even one dose of Bute is banned from being slaughtered for human consumption.”

    The reference speaks to a reason for slaughter not the continuation of life. Any PR person worth their salary from any reputable communications organization would be getting out the “verbal death stunner ray gun” for this sentence alone.

    Please take a moment to organize one’s thoughts before one speaks to the press. Even one’s supporters could find a flaw with this statement (and believe me I, myself, am an anti-slaughter supporter). No offense intended to anyone but our comments are being read by pro-slaughter organizations as well and they are looking for any advantage or ways to promote their own interests and arguments at our expense, and therefore to the detriment of the animals that we all work so diligently to protect.


    • WestDeltaGirl December 3, 2013 at 5:55 pm #

      Please take note that the interviewed person has no control over what the reporter writes.


      • Susan Crane-Sundell (@sabaahslight) December 3, 2013 at 10:31 pm #

        I know but the reporter was Susan Salk and she is noted for being accurate, Not a personal criticism. It’s just that the issue is so volatile and the slaughter advocates are ruthless and unrelenting!


  2. Dennis Davey December 4, 2013 at 10:36 am #

    Reads like a fairly effective program. However perhaps the branding should be a requirment and not voluntary?


    • WestDeltaGirl December 4, 2013 at 11:40 am #

      That’s an even better idea!


    • Jean Robertson December 4, 2013 at 12:18 pm #

      It is a great idea to make it a requirement. Even then, someone would have to see the brand, then clue in to its purpose and actually turn the horse back. That is expecting a lot in this world!
      It is a better idea than pages of information made up by the kill buyer and ignored by all.



  1. ​The Handwritten Letter | What you Can do to Pass the SAFE Act of 2013 | Hippies for Horses - December 3, 2013

    […] Proposal would brand horses treated with Bute ( […]


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