Cherry, my thoroughbred, was a successful race horse.
After her career was over by what we suspect was a severe injury, she was used to produce a foal. She had her foal and shortly after she was put in the sales.
We know it was a quick turnaround because she was still lactating whilst stood in the stalls waiting for bids. Who knows their fate when in these places?
Meat men, dealers, and the odd person looking to give another horse a chance are all in attendance. Who ends up buying them determines how their life will unfold!
The sales mean, owners and breeders are surreptitiously able to off load horses legally without prejudice or responsibility. This is often where we would find a large amount of overbred young TB’s.
The racing industry does have a regulative body; However, we all know this doesn’t always offer protection for the animals which we would expect.
There are always those that suffer the consequences of money-making exercises and as this is an industry which proudly boasts itself as being the ‘sport of kings’, they are there to make as much money as possible.
For the very few, often well documented race horses who go onto have happy retirements, there are thousands which end up being euthanised because they are not… good enough, injured which means they couldn’t race but could still live out a long happy pain free life yet are not afforded that.
There are those who’s conformation is not good and potentially more likely to pick up injuries, and there are those that are killed during training or on the race track.
If we really look into this industry, horses are assets which cost and if they are not earning their keep or they cost the breeder/owners money they become very vulnerable.
This is an area we want to expose and get the true facts as to how many horses are bred for this industry and the reality behind the breeding program, along with harsh training and race day truth.
I believe if we knew the facts and we were able to document this, the industry would not be revered and supported as it currently is.
Some of the Cherry Horse Welfare International team will regularly visit horse sales, in an attempt to document and show the horrors which are the sales and just how many Thoroughbreds end up in these places.
We show interviews with jockeys and stable hands who have worked on race yards and seen the reality and have now left the industry for moral reasons
We want to gather the true figures of TB’s that end up abroad and entering the food chain. This is a hard reality and something not many from the industry want in the Public domain.
In 2013, 32,841 live horses were transported to southern Italy from all over Europe. 5,008 of these were from the UK.
We must be the voice for these animals and highlight the reality not the shiny apparently revered horses we are proudly shown on race day. This is not a true representation of horse racing.
I want to gather facts and information present them to the relevant government bodies to A) Change racing regulation regarding breeding/ rehoming and training methods B) STOP live transportation to Europe.
Together we can do this, we have to do it for them.