Horses are domesticated animals just like dogs and cats. They are also used in farms and in horse racing. However, there are some countries where horses are slaughtered for their meat. Although this is not popular in the United States as it is in other countries, there are supporters and critics about this contentious topic. To have a better understanding, let us enumerate some of the benefits and setbacks of horse slaughter.
List of Pros of Horse Slaughter
1. It can be a source of food.
Horse meat are eaten in some countries and according to people who have tasted it, it is delicious. Just like pork, beef and chicken, horse meat can provide healthy food to people especially if supply for other meat sources becomes scarce, say, if there is an epidemic of death in animals or poultry. Moreover, supporters say that this is not a bad practice if there is abundance in supply.
2. It can be an industry.
Although this is not yet a popular industry, selling horse meat can be a boon to the economy if the time comes that horses will be used for food like other animal food sources. Advocates also say that if this practice is done with cows, chicken and pigs, there is no difference if this will be done on horses. This will be a source of income for people.
3. It can end the suffering of old and unwanted horses.
Old horses as well as those which are injured like race horses are euthanized. However, some owners who do not want to spend for this turn to other ways in putting their horses to death. Supporters are suggesting that instead of doing these, old and sick horses can be sold to slaughter houses. At least, the people working there know what to do and slaughter the horses in more humane ways.
List of Cons of Horse Slaughter
1. It is an ethical issue.
People who are pushing for animal welfare are against this practice because for them, killing horses to become food sources is barbaric and unethical. Like dogs and cats, horses are domesticated animals and as such, they can be considered as pets or even part of the family. Therefore, horse slaughter should not even be considered.
2. It is a form of abuse.
Horse slaughter is a form of animal abuse, an act that critics are vehemently against this practice. They posit that most slaughter houses have inhumane practices when they slaughter these animals, including cows and pigs. Opponents of the act of slaughtering horses say that the condition of animals in these places are horrific because they keep animals in cramped spaces and even hurt them.
3. It can be a threat to health.
People living near slaughter houses and people who work in this industry are exposed to health-related risks due to unclean surrounding, disposal of waste materials and lack of skills in slaughtering horses. Since this is not common in most places, the person who will be doing the task might not have the proper skills and tools to slaughter horses.
Not all people are comfortable with the idea of killing horses for their meat for several reasons. However, there are also supporters of this practice that say this is practical and helpful. This issue will continue to be debatable and so long as there are opposing groups, this will always be a controversial topic.