Equine microchipping clinic hopes to prevent accidental slaughter

Microchipping horses clinic

From: The Middletown Press
By: Kaitlyn Schroyer

Microchipping horses clinic

Attendees of a recent disaster preparedness clinic learned about the importance of microchipping horses and can now do so at a clinic at Connecticut Draft Horse Rescue in Haddam Neck in September. Submitted photo

HADDAM NECK >> After the beloved family pony is sold, who knows whether that pony will end up on a kill buyer’s trailer traveling to Mexico or Canada to be slaughtered.

However the trail of unknown horses is ending with the growing use of microchips. The beloved pony can be scanned at auction for a microchip and the former owners alerted before the pony is on its way to the slaughterhouse.

Microchipping for horses is a fairly new thing as horses don’t tend to run away from their homes, according to the Equine Rescue Network. However with the prevalence of horses shipping to slaughter, microchipping is growing in popularity.

“It’s the up-and-coming new way to identify horses,” Stacey Golub, equine veternarian and founder of the Connecticut Draft Horse Rescue in Haddam Neck, said.

When a horse arrives at auction, an ERN volunteer scans the horse for a microchip if the horse is at risk and headed to a possible kill buyer. If a horse is found with a microchip, the ERN contacts the former owner and all emergency contacts in the registry.

The ERN will even offer temporary funding to hold the horse safe between 24 hours and seven days and aid in coordinating transportation. However if the bidding exceeds $325, which is because if the horse sells for over that, they are not considered at risk for slaughter.

In that case, the ERN will notify the highest bidder that the horse is microchipped and suggest they contact ERN if they ever decide to sell the horse.

“It has given owners a great way to help alert them if horses they sell might end up at auction,” said Amy Gardner Anderson, owner of Bear Paw Stables in Middletown. “But once a horse is out of your care, there are no guarantees he or she will be safe.”

Gardner Anderson said she personally experienced having a former horse almost go to slaughter.

“I sold my horse once, the owners did not keep on touch and he ended up in a bad situation,” Gardner Anderson said. “I was fortunate to find him by chance and bought him back.”

The ERN’s registry, called the Equine Protection Registry, also includes medications the horse has received.

“The majority of common equine medicines have a warning label ‘not for use in horses intended for food,’” Golub said. “Receiving these makes them ineligible to be slaughtered for human consumption. Registering this information with your microchip can help protect them from being sold to slaughter.”

In addition, horses found in a natural diaster or found while investigating neglect and abandoned horses have scanners, according to the ERN.

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AUTHOR: Amber Barnes
  • Judye michaels

    Whoever thinks that a microchip will prohibit any horse or pony from death in the predatory, crime-infested, greed-driven industry of horse slaughter is VERY NAIVE. Microchips and brands have been historically cut out.
    Also, think of Backstreet Bully…..faxed records attesting to the use of banned substances didn’t keep him off the killing floor and dinner plates of wealthy Eiropeans and Asians.
    The ONLY way to protect our animals is to END horse slaughter and shipping to slaughter!!!

    August 27, 2014
  • Judye michaels

    Another thought, I’ll bet dollars to donuts that the day New Holland, Sugarcreek, and Shipsea allow any ERN volunteer to scan horses will be the same day that it snows in Hell,, which, by the way, is where the majority of horses at those auctions are headed….

    August 27, 2014
  • Margaret

    I’d be super interested in knowing if the microchip ever moved. BLM won’t microchip because they say the chip can move from neck to rump and get loss in muscle.

    But then BLM refuses to work advocates who sue them for relief. So what are we suppose to do?

    ISPMB recently got done with their 15 year study and their herds are just now doubling in size! So much for the BLM rhetoric they love spewing.

    Not every BLM employee is a failure. I know of one man who listens, listens to your questions and answers. He doesn’t answer what he thought you said. He answers your question. BLM needs more people like him.

    August 27, 2014
  • sherriey

    you all are right about your opinion(s) regarding microchipping. but, none the less, all of mine are chipped…all 8! and the chips, if placed properly in the neck ligament, do not move!!!
    i chipped all of mine just in case of a natural disaster, or in case of theft. if in case of theft, contacting all auction houses that your horse has been stolen and is chipped….and telling them the description of the horse….and asking them to read any such horse that comes into the auction for a chip….may help get your horse back. the auctions have to read for a chip if requested to. plus….with a chip, its a proven way to be able to say that that horse belongs to you…its proof!….after all….who’s to say that a certain ‘bay’ (or any color) horse is yours? with a chip….there is no doubt!
    say what you want about chips…but i believe in them.

    August 28, 2014