Slaughterhouses are not well known and are a very important part of horse rescue groups. Thousands of horses are sent to slaughterhouses that are bought in horse auctions. Gerda’s Animal Aid with the help of volunteers and donations save as many horses that they can. If you would like to learn more about what they do – About Us
Horse Rescue Story Sir Richard
On a snowy day in March 2012 a group of us from our rescue attended a high kill auction that took us 6 hours from home. We arrived early because we wanted to see the horses as they arrived, in all there were 300 horses that ran through the auction that evening. Before any trucks came in, we noticed a herd of 8 or 9 horses that had come in the night before, they were an unhandled band of Belgian Quarter horse crosses. There among them we unmistakably spotted the herd stallion…magnificent, calm and powerful looking, surveying the crowd the whole day long. In the middle of them was a foal, hard to see at first because the group kept him in the center of them for protection.
As the auction came to an end round pen pieces were lined up to make a shoot, for the herd to run into the auction arena. The stallion jumped the 5ft. round pen but was quickly cattle prodded back to his band. They were chased into the brightly lit noisy arena in a panic, following the stallion at every turn, keeping the baby in the center at all times. The bidding started with the stallion and we found ourselves unexpectedly bidding for him! The only other bidder was a “kill buyer”. We purchased him for $430 and he was culled from his herd. All the other horses were bought for slaughter including the foals mother. The foal was the last one standing alone in the arena….so we bought him!
Sir Richard as he was named, spent the spring and summer learning to trust us, his nature proved to be calm, thoughtful and oh so sweet. Once he overcame his fear it was incredible to watch him go from wild to trusting, one person and then very slowly more and more people into his life. He and his son were both gelded and “Jax” his boy, was quickly adopted into a home with unlimited love! Sir Richard was integrated with the rest of our rescues geldings and continued to accept new things easily because he knew he could trust us. People visiting us saw him as our mascot and would come just to visit with him, he loves meeting new people and is a perfect gentleman.
We thought it was time for training and Sir Richard has been sent to a trainer who has been teaching him to drive and ride, in March he will have spent three months away from us and is learning more about the world we have brought him into. Once he comes back he will be put up for adoption and it will be with a heavy heart that we let him go!!! But we also know there are so many more horses waiting for their chance to be rescued from the horrors of slaughter!