13 Kills in Texas

Through a FOIA request to the Texas Racing Commission, I have confirmed the following kills at that state’s tracks through April 21:

Team Colors, Jan 27, Sam Houston R – “bilateral proximal sesamoid fracture”
Come and Take It, Jan 29, Retama – “leg caught in stall door, fractured fetlock”
Twice Please, Feb 16, Sam Houston T – “severe back injury working from gates”
Charlie Webb, Mar 2, Sam Houston T – “high transverse cannon bone fracture”
Doctor C., Mar 10, Sam Houston – “vet scratch, colic Mar 9, died Mar 10”
Colt Silver Bullet, Mar 13, Sam Houston T – “sesamoid fracture, cannon fracture”
Ghost Speaker, Mar 19, Retama T – “sudden death on track” (two years old)
Tommy Grossman, Mar 26, Sam Houston R – “sudden death on track” (four years old)
Supernumerary, Mar 30, Sam Houston – “severe laminitis”
yet-to-be-named filly, Apr 7, Lone Star – “pneumonia/colitis/renal failure”
It’s All Up to You, Apr 20, Lone Star R – “fetlock disarticulation”
Montt, Apr 20, Lone Star R – “P1 fracture”
Thisonesmylife, Apr 21, Lone Star R – “cannon fracture”

The full report on Supernumerary: “Horse shipped from Fair Grounds Race track after original injury. Horse [treated] for septic arthritis RH fetlock – non-responsive to [treatment] – progressed to severe laminitis leading to euthanasia.” The 3-year-old Supernumerary was last raced at Fair Grounds in December, so it’s safe to assume that he was suffering for weeks, if not months, with the “original injury,” then “septic arthritis,” and finally, “severe laminitis.” Imagine that.

This is horseracing.

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  1. Doctor C was a vet scratch – does that mean his owners were actually planning to go ahead and race him even showing signs of distress?
    (Not that it would surprise anyone).

    • When a horse is scratched by the race day vet it means that the horse was presented to race in a condition unsuitable to race. The horse may or may not have been visibly distressed.
      There are numerous reasons why a horse is vet scratched e.g. lame (there are degrees of lameness), an obvious laceration, swelling in a fetlock, some blood coming from a nose or mouth, sweating profusely (which can be indicative of a high temperature, horse is sick, horse is nervous about the task ahead of him), in light condition (underweight), in poor condition, mucous coming from an eye or nose. The horse can also be fractious and in a state of distress for a raft of reasons e.g. a health issue that has not been identified/treated, and, if he’s wearing one, the discomfort of a tongue tie which causes pain.
      From my observations, it has to be serious for a race day vet to scratch a horse – I have a low opinion of these vets because I’ve seen far too many horses passed suitable to race when they were obviously not in a condition to race.

    • Carolyn McDonald gave a correct response.
      However, during the pre-race vet inspection the vet conducts a visual gait assessment, for the most part, with some feeling legs when warranted on most tracks, but some tracks don’t have this at all.
      Nevertheless, this vet is employed by the commission and is completely different than the private vet.
      So the state vet has NO access to all the private doping/vet records that the private vet has been administering to the racehorse in between and leading up to races.
      Both the dope and treatments administered (Shock Wave Therapy) are kept secret and usually reveal ongoing issues that the racehorse have, the seriousness of the issue(s), and whether they are being treated for chronic issues – ALL ARE KEPT SECRET – so that pre-existing conditions or a racehorse who is vulnerable can’t be flagged.
      Moreover, these secret doping/vet records DON’T FOLLOW THE HORSE and we know that racehorses are shipped around like chattels so even a fracture isn’t revealed.
      This is akin to buying a car with no brakes and no safety records putting everybody at high safety risk.
      Most trainers in conjunction with their vets knows what dope to administer prior to the vet coming to the barn for the inspection and can easily mask some lameness issues so that the gait appears 100% upon visual inspection.
      Furthermore, the HBPA ensures that all private vets have the “withdrawal drugs and times” current sheet so that they know exactly how to follow it.
      The HBPA also demands, and gets the disclosure of any new dope that they will begin testing for and they demand that this information is disclosed at least 30 days prior to allow for withdrawal times and to avoid positive doping tests.
      This is akin to telling a bank robber that the cops are in the bank waiting for them to show up.
      It’s insanity and then they wonder why they have issues and have been killing racehorses for years.
      Of course we are now aware that the CHRB spurned by Ms. Stronach’s Santa Anita want the medical/doping vet records disclosed – wow, golly gee – that’s something that I fought hard for back in 2005 and lost my job because I was wanting changes to protect the racehorses and the jockeys would be a fringe benefit of those changes.
      Anyways, the system is set-up to deny the racehorses any short of minimum protections while they bolster every single cheating, doper, maimer and killer.
      This is horse racing.

  2. Another horrific Death List that is clear evidence that this business involves massive pain, suffering, and dying.
    The last time I stabled and trained at Retama Park in Texas, around 2009, it was pathetic.
    About 90% of owners/trainers couldn’t even afford to keep a horse and they were suffering.
    I’m talking not feeding or cleaning stalls out for days!!
    Horses forced to train on hooves that were so long, painful, and neglected.
    Obviously lame/crippled horses suffering in their stalls or limping up to the track with nobody protecting them.
    Vets who would no longer service clients due to overdue accounts so if the horse was in desperate need of vet care it didn’t get it.
    It suffered in the stall until it either died or got vanned-off to the nearest kill auction.
    During this time I was approached every day for either money, feed or to take a horse that they couldn’t afford.
    I just couldn’t help, but I did report these things to no avail.
    I left and had to temporarily board my horse for 1 month and the boarding farm was just as bad.
    There were starving racehorses all over the place that were so neglected and they were off the track – every single one of them.
    Reporting this gets you nowhere, but most of the politicians there are fed-up with horse racing and have made many attempts to shut it down because they realize that developing Retama would bring millions in jobs and steady property tax revenue.
    The HBPA in conjunction with other pro-horse racing entities repeatedly blocked and still block any attempt to sell-off and shut down horse racing and it’s still going!!
    Texas horse racing should have been shut down years ago, but people who make millions off their bones, backs, and bodies continue to fight for their right to continue the cruelty, abuse and inhumane treatment.
    That would be the “horseman’s group” AKA HBPA.
    The HBPA, based on my direct experiences, is a criminal enterprise who continues to financially gain off the misery of racehorses while collecting billions in wagering profits.
    They have never been audited or investigated for their unsavory business practices which is long overdue.

  3. More racehorses breaking down, suffering terrible injuries and dying. And those who have the power to intervene continue to do nothing.

    Supernumeray – only 3 years of age and he suffers injury, then travels with the injury?, doesn’t respond to treatment and they THEN let him get to the stage of excruciatingly painful SEVERE laminitis – I hate to think for how long he endured this unbearable pain whilst humans walked past and did nothing.

    You mongrel bastards.

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