Friday, March 28, 2008

Tough Call

I'm conflicted over this story about the 70 malnourished Walking Horses in Kentucky. 70 is a lot of horses and to try and feed them must be near to impossible. I have 5 horses and it has been a challenge to me (albeit one I'm obsessive about, and a challenge I rather enjoy) in order to properly and successfully balance my horses' nutrition, feed, and condition. I have all types of horses, all ages, and all have a different function. It's not easy to keep them in the precise weight range I want, with no real pasture to speak of and grain prices going through the roof. But, 70 horses? I really can appreciate the quote in this article that says, "Instead of seizing animals and bringing charges, the government should help people by finding and providing hay." Malnourishment is definitely abuse, in many cases, but how can you punish Mother Nature for just not providing us with enough rain last year? These horses were fed and the owners were trying, but they just didn't have any grass in their pasture. They certainly did better than the man in Jefferson County here a few months ago who shot his two horses because they were making his pasture muddy (no grass) and costing him too much to feed. Then again, it's all about the perspective: perhaps he felt that killing them (instantly) was better than letting them starve to death over time. I'm just grateful for my hay guy, Buddy, and the people at Purina Mills so that I can keep my ponies healthy and happy. I know there are so many others out there who aren't as lucky.

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