Let’s talk about horse racing.
Some go the races for a grand day out, it’s an excuse to get dressed up in all your finery.
Some go because they like to have a flutter, win a few quid (some do this from their armchair).
Some go because they say they love horses (which I find the most preposterous of all – you’ll see why)
Whatever the reason for going to the races, or just having a bet I find the whole thing absolutely repugnant. I’d go so far as to say I find it barbaric and I make no apologies for feeling that way. Or in fact saying it out loud, well, on the blog in this case, anyway.
These are the reasons why I believe that it is an undeniably cruel sport.
Many race courses are too long, and have too high jumps, which push the horses way beyond their capabilities, and often result in injuries, leading to death. Aintree is one of the deadliest courses in the world.
Horses are made to run at speeds which are beyond their natural capabilities.
Horses are whipped. In most cases (all?) I imagine it’s illegal to go around whipping animals. But on a race course it’s part and parcel of the sport.
The RSPCA says
Using whips can cause pain and suffering to the animal and often makes them run beyond their usual capability, increasing the likelihood of accidents.
The horses are often drugged with legal and / or illegal drugs, to mask their pain during a race and enhance / increase their performance, when the animal should most likely be rested and receiving treatment.
Horses are often started on race courses at just two years of old when their bodies are not yet strong enough which can lead to pain and injury.
Horses are herd animals—they naturally live together in large groups, graze together in meadows, and roam all around. In races, they spend up to 23 hours a day in a stall and are always being dragged around to different racetracks, so they don’t often get to enjoy some freedom or spend time with other horses. Extract from PETA kids website.
In the USA around 24 horses die on race courses per week.
In the U.K. so far this year, by the beginning of June, 76 horses had already lost their lives on the race course. This isn’t including those euthanised because they are no longer deemed to be up to the job.
That’s 76 horses in under 6 months!! 76 lives lost in the name of sport. Frankly that’s 76 too many.
The horses obviously don’t have a choice in the matter, they are exploited by the horse racing industry, suffer cruelty, pain, injury, and death just so that people can be entertained.
Race horses are nothing more than a commodity to those making money in the industry.
Does a day at the races seem like such a good thing now?
The thing that sticks in my throat the most in all this is those who go to the races because they love horses. If you loved horses you would not be complicit in this vile industry.
Sources, RSPCA https://www.rspca.org.uk/adviceandwelfare/pets/horses/health/whips, PETA http://www.peta.org.uk/blog/the-grand-national-8-things-they-dont-tell-you-about-horse-racing/ , PETA KIDS http://www.petakids.com/save-animals/horse-racing/ , https://www.league.org.uk/horse-racing , Animal aid https://www.animalaid.org.uk/the-issues/our-campaigns/horse-racing/.