Advertised as Beef or Pork but ACTUALLY Horse Meat?

Advertised as Beef or Pork but ACTUALLY Horse Meat?

Why aren’t food inspectors surprised there’s horse meat in sausages?

CBC:  1 in 5 sausages tested across Canada contains different meat than labelled.

TORONTO SUN: The mystery meat behind your sausage. Worried about the MANE ingredient?


People Eat Horses?  Canada Slaughters Horses?

People Eat Horses? Canada Slaughters Horses?

Marie Bennett writes:

I hate to admit this but until I moved back to Canada from Southern California, I had no idea that horses were regularly slaughtered for human consumption.

Seriously, I thought I must be hearing things.

People eat horse meat?

People send their horses to auction, their pets, their companions,  without setting a minimum bid?

Meat buyers bid, win and haul them off to slaughter?

How is it possible that horse slaughter exists?

Fit, young, completely sound horses, including pregnant mares, are regularly slaughtered in Canada to be eaten by humans, or worse shipped to Japan, crammed in crates,  to be slaughtered there?

You have got to be kidding me.  This can’t be true?

But, unfortunately it is true.

Horses of all shapes and sizes, including well bred, well trained, “registered”, expensive horses.  Healthy horses, young horses, and yes, again, even pregnant mares.

Horses like Jack, a handsome, dark, 16.2 HH percheron, likely crossed with a thoroughbred, who is light and responsive under saddle and who was on the door step of a slaughter plant in Alberta, but who was mercifully brought back to British Columbia to live out his days as a beloved riding horse.

A horse you can jump on bareback, ride with or without a bridle, who will go any where, through anything, and all day long.

Oh and did I mention that he side passes like a dream?

Horses like 16.2 HH thoroughbred DJ who raced in British Columbia and in California, who was then re-trained to successfully 3 day event.

A horse who made any one who rode him look not just good, but great.

A horse who would bring a big silly grin to the face of my favorite riding instructor, while she would repeat again and again, “He’s so lovely”.

Horses like 17.2 HH Puff, registered as a North American Spotted Draft (see the picture at the top of this post) who began his life in Alberta where he was trained to drive, double and single before he was 3 and who was sold at 3 for $10,000.

A horse it turns out who later also had professional training by a well known driving instructor, and as a result was featured in a magazine article.

A horse who loads like a dream, travels like a dream, who loves to be bathed, and to swim. A horse who has impeccable ground manners and loves to work.

A horse who through no fault of  his own ended up passed between a few hands and who on two separate occasions almost went to slaughter.

He came to me at about 8 years of age, for a song.  I did not at first know his background, but it didn’t take me long to figure out that someone had trained him well,  and it seemed to me that he knew how to drive — a few tests and yes, it turned out that he did — and then he took to the saddle, he looked to pick up contact, and he loves to go, but if you say “WHOA” at any gait, you best be ready to stop, which is of course a very good thing!

Horses like Moose, 17.2 HH, Clyde x Thoroughbred.  It turns out that he too came to me, direct from a meat buyer at 8 years of age.

At the time I didn’t know about his background, but it was obvious he’d been well handled.  Tested from the ground and then from the saddle,  and when the jumps came out, he not only knew exactly what to do, it turns out he loves to jump!

How could a horse, that I came to learn originally came from a breeding program where horses regularly sold for $60,000 or more, a horse who is the bravest horse you’ll find any where, a perfectly sound, young horse, who again loves to jump, end up almost slaughtered for human consumption?

It happens every single day in the United States, Canada and Mexico.  EVERY SINGLE DAY.  The United States has banned the slaughter of horses but horses are routinely shipped to Canada and Mexico to be slaughtered outside of the U.S.

Amazing horses, young horses, sound horses, of every color, size, breed and of both sexes end up, again through no fault of their own,  slaughtered for human consumption.  Horses that are blank slates and horses who are well trained. Take your pick.

Yes, unbelievably, in Canada, a country we all consider to be a first world country, this barbaric practice exists.

To make matters worse horses are transported in ways that are not humane, slaughtered in ways that are meant for other species, and not only that, there are NOT any enforceable, accountable guidelines in place to protect those eating horse meat.

One of my neighbors asked why eating horse meat is any different than eating beef or other commonly consumed meat, and that’s a great question.

I want to go on the record and state that I don’t eat any meat but if I did, I would be concerned for a couple reasons including the fact that horse meat has ended up being sold as beef.

Even if you are okay with eating horse, you should be concerned.  It is up to those who are delivering horses to slaughter to declare, on an honor system, as to whether the horses they are delivering have been treated with drugs that are not intended to enter the food chain.

Veterinary drugs like wormers and pain killers such as phenylbutazone AKA “bute”,  are regularly given to horses, drugs that are clearly marked as NOT being meant for ANY animal that is to enter the human food chain.

One would think, that surely in Canada there are fool proof protocols in place to prevent horses treated with drugs not meant for human consumption from ending up on dinner plates.  The so called protocols are based on the honour system.  They are worthless.

You would think that horses that have been pets or working animals, and regularly treated with drugs that are common place in horse care, would not be slaughtered for human consumption,  BUT as you peruse this site and read articles and watch documentaries including “From the Kill Pen“, you’ll find that the so called protocols are worthless.

You’ll also find as you go through this site, and BC Horse Angels,  and “Google” information about horse slaughter, that horse meat is knowingly, and unknowingly eaten by humans in the United States, Canada, Japan, China, Russia, the United Kingdom, Kazakhstan and Italy.

YES, you read that correctly, horse meat ends up in food products that are labeled as beef, so people are eating horse meat without realizing it.

Horse Meat found in Beef Patties – CBC
1 in 5 Sausages – Canada – Horse Meat – CBC
Horse Meat found in Beef Products – CNN


Unfortunately the paper trail when selling horses for slaughter is extremely weak.

Horses can be dropped off at a slaughter plant, and the person dropping off simply fills out a form stating that they are the rightful owner of the horse and that it has not been treated with drugs that are not meant to enter the human food chain.

The document when selling horses to a slaughter facility is based on the honour system.

There is NOT a mandatory hold time before slaughtering a horse that has been sold directly to the slaughter plant.

There is NOT any verification of ownership required by the slaughter house (unless the horse is branded), and again horses may be slaughtered the same day they are sold to the slaughter facility.


Really think about that for a moment.

Depending on where you live, especially if you are in British Columbia, Alberta or Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec or New Brunswick you could be at work, someone could pull in, load your horse, drive to a slaughter plant in Alberta or Quebec and YOUR horse could be sold, and slaughtered, before you even know they are missing.

Click here to read about 2 pet horses who were stolen and slaughtered for human consumption.

If like me you are appalled at what is happening, I hope you’ll consider rescuing, adopting your next horse instead of buying.

I also hope that you’ll consider gifting and donating to rescues and organizations like Canadian Horse Defence Coalition, so that work to prevent the unnecessary slaughter of horses can continue, and so that horses being rescued can be properly cared for, and so that fewer will end up being slaughtered.

Surely by working together we can, once and for all, ban the slaughter of horses in Canada, Mexico and beyond.

THANK YOU for not just reading, but for taking action.

If you are not in a position to adopt, or donate, and even if you are, please also consider a phone call to your Member of Parliament to demand that the slaughter of horses in Canada be stopped, and please share this site far and wide, use YOUR social media accounts to do good!

Photo credits (mare above)Tamara Daub, Tiny Feet Photography High River, Alberta, Canada.

Tamara’s husband, Rob stood up and bid for this mare at a local auction after the auctioneer said that if no one did, she was going to be sent straight to slaughter.

Yes, even after someone stood on the mare’s back and threw a rope around to show just how well broke she was, Rob was the only one to step up.

He thought he bought two horses that day, a gelding and this mare but as it turned out Rob bought three.

The family woke up one morning to be totally surprised by this beautiful baby.

THANK YOU Tamara for sharing your gorgeous pictures and for all that your family is doing for all three of the horses you rescued.