Kill-Buyer on the Kinds of Horses He Traffics In: “Most of them are some sort of racehorse.”

In the wake of the ABC’s devastating expose of the slaughter of Australian racehorses, a kill-buyer was profiled in The Sydney Morning Herald. Here are some excerpts:

Peter Loffel is the face of horse racing’s unpalatable truth. He is known as a kill buyer, although he prefers the term horse trader. He buys horses no one wants and trucks them to a place no horse wants to end up – the Meramist abattoir…

The horses he buys are nearly all retired racehorses or trotters. He says he buys most of his gallopers direct from trainers, licensed participants in an industry which has spent the past four days claiming it has no idea so many thoroughbreds are sent to abattoirs. “Most of them are some sort of racehorse.” If what Loffel says is true, the industry’s claim that horses are being slaughtered beyond their sight is bunk; any trainer who sells a horse to Loffel knows exactly where it is going.

Loffel, 62, has quietly gone about his grim business for more than 30 years. He doesn’t just deal in horses…but he has dealt with horses nearly all his working life and scoffs at those now decrying the practice. “Since Friday people have been ringing me all hours of the night and their language – well, I’m being polite. And why? Because I slaughter horses, for Christ’s sake. If I went tomorrow, someone would step in my place,” he says.

The kill buying business is not complicated. Loffel buys some horses from auctions, but most of them he picks up cheaply from trainers and breeders. Once he has enough to fill his B-double trailer – up to three dozen horses – he starts the two-day drive north to the Queensland town of Caboolture.

Some of the horses he buys gallop too slow, some have tendon issues, some have breathing difficulties but they all share the same problem, as Loffel explains. “Every horse can’t be a winner, unfortunately. It’s like people; we don’t get slaughtered but you know what I mean. What do they do with these horses?” Despite…the abuse and death threats he is receiving from animal activists, Loffel is unapologetic. He has no plans to stop anytime soon.

He dismisses the idea that every horse can be rehomed. “One in a thousand is a good horse,” he says. “They are not all going to be suitable. No one breeds for us but…when the season is tough, they can’t give them away. People don’t want them.”

“People don’t want them” – hence, slaughter. Look, here’s the uncomfortable truth: If you are supporting this industry in any way – betting, attending, patronizing racinos, or just promoting it in the public discourse – you are supporting equine hell. There is simply no getting around that.

(full Herald article)

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  1. It is horrific, but you are not getting the point, and YOU are contributing to the problem, by ridding us of horse racing, these horses have NO job, no purpose!!!! Do you understand????

    • Lol. Sorry, but that’s asinine. They are bred for racing. If racing didn’t exist they wouldn’t be born to be slaughtered.

      • Yeah, Alan: It’s YOU(!!!!!)
        God, I needed that LOL. Where do these sick freaks even come from(??????)

      • Alan, I was referring to Ann. I’m sorry I didn’t make that clear enough. Guess I’m just delerious from all this horror and carnage. I fully support you and this cause, and will do better next time.

        • No worries. When I read on my phone the order of posts gets jumbled and I lose track of what’s what.

    • You make it sound like the racing industry is doing these horses some sort of of favor by breeding them, confining and isolating them, drugging and doping them, and sending them out to run too young so they break down with catastrophic injuries. How can you even think of an existence like this as a “purpose”? Why does a living sentient being need a purpose to justify its life? If anything, the racing industry needs to justify its continued existence in the face of the maiming, abuse, and death of thousands of horses. You racing apologists are like rot on a parasite – the sooner the parasite is eliminated, the sooner you’ll disappear as well.

    • The real point is racing CREATED the problem, Ann.

      – Overbreeding!!!
      -Using horses for a few years(1/4 – 1/3 of their life expectancy)
      -No plan once racing is finished with them
      -Damaged horses, many beyond repair, with nowhere to go
      -No funds for their care
      -Woefully few places to take them in
      -“Retirement” – the slaughterhouse

      As long as there is racing 10,000 or more Thoroughbreds will be slaughtered every year.

    • Well, Ann, they are racing NOW, correct? And where are they ending up NOW? Oh yes, we know a small amount end up in rescues and rehomed, but surely not the majority. And I don’t see how many of US have contributed to the problem, when WE have spent countless hours, thousands of dollars, claimed, rehabbed, rehomed, loved, and yes, humanely euthanized, ( when too injured to live a pain free life,) racing’s cast aways and failures, all the while having not made 1 red cent off of their “jobs and purpose” in the racing industry. That argument would be almost humorous, if it weren’t so pathetically sad.

    • Loved like family though? Thoroughbreds can be anything they’re not just racehorses. When racing ends, the bullshit and the suffering goes with it.

    • Horses can be trained in a lot of different things than racing. Have you ever heard of therapy horses? It’s a huge and growing business,rightfully so, and many times, even injured, recovered horses can be used in therapy. Pleasure riding is another. Friends of mine have rescued a quarter horse and 2 thorobreds from kill auctions, one a grandson of Secretariat. They are wonderful horses, and have been retrained for pleasure and trail riding, and even jumping over trail obstacles. Companion animals-people have bought senior horses, or horses who because of injury, cannot be ridden, as pasture companions for horses they already own. Horses are very social animals, as social or more so than humans. Horses who have equine pasture mates are much calmer and easier to handle.

      If racing continues on any level or form, as some insist, breeding MUST be drastically scaled back. The racing system is flooded with horses every single year. As someone said, not every horse is a champion, not every champion racehorse will pass on its genes. So, what to do with the horses who don’t pan out? Right now, slaughter them in the most inhumane way possible.
      If there were vastly less numbers of foals born each year, we wouldn’t have this problem.

    • The fact is….you don’t get it Ann. Look at the big picture, if you can. Without racing, the breeding will halt. Simple math . It will be more feasable to get safety nets and rehome the current supply of racehorses . OTTB’S Rescues are independently doing a great job at rehabbing/rehoming now! Ending the demand will stop the supply. Nothing can happen overnight, but with strategic planning this is a no brainer. Quick question….shall the abuse and cruelty of blatant animal abuse be allowed to continue because you believe these horses will have no jobs?? Preposterous ideology!! My barn on Monday rescued an OTTB (one of many thru the years) , she’s hot right now, but in the 3 days she’s with us I’ve been privelged to see her transition slowly to where she’s clearly showing signs of trust. Slow and steady, but I already know , as a horsewomen, this beautiful mare is on her way to be exceptional, more importantly, happy, safe and loved.

  2. This is no surprise to anyone who’s been in the racing industry for more than a week and if they claim “I didn’t know” or “they get good homes after racing” they are just flat out lying, no two ways about it. In harness racing the euphemism is “Amish”. Stop lying and just admit yes, we use up the horses, if we don’t kill them in the process we send them to slaughter and we don’t care. Let’s see where honesty gets them. The kill buyer (sorry, Amish buyer) is on the backstretch most days. I bred a winner of $950K, guess where he ended up. I’m fairly certain that a ballot issue to ban horse racing would pass just about anywhere. These people are hideous.

    • Alan, Thank you for posting! I didn’t know about the threats and assaults. My God, it gets worse the more I know. Thanks for being a stand-up guy.

  3. It’s so hard to read these posts, let alone look at the pictures. I have to force myself to do these things. Force myself to read, afraid of what more I will learn. Force myself to look, to absorb the images, like this one, where the horse looks obviously alive, yet trapped in some bizarre narrow death hole. The images are always haunting, as are the eyes of this one, as if asking for help. Who takes these pictures? Who is there to witness the suffering, and let’s it happen?

    I put my $ where my mouth is – to the best of my ability – while I continue to wonder, when will it end?

  4. Where most racehorses end up is the slaughterhouse – fact.
    Whether they die on the track or on the slaughterhouse floor it is the most brutal, inhumane, and cruel way of dying and if you support horse racing than you inadvertently support this.
    Their lives leading up to they dying is equally horrific.
    These are all facts and for a person to continue to defend this makes them equally horrific.
    I’ve been perusing the comments on The Washington Post in response to both Patrick’s article and The Jockey Club article and the pro-horse racing comments are shocking to say the least.
    Most all active pro-horse racing comments are hiding behind fictitious names and accounts while people against horse racing clearly states their names so there’s a credibility issue as per regular apologist folks.
    One of the most active outright liars is Maria Case who comes on here and comments as well.
    I speak for myself when I unequivocally state the following:
    1. Standing up for racehorse rights doesn’t make me a liberal retard with communist ties.
    2. Standing up for the racehorses doesn’t mean that I’m anti-capitalist whose against profit making companies. In fact, the opposite is true. I’m all for profits because that’s what makes a business successful. However, I don’t support any business who makes their profits off the lives of non-consenting animals. I support successful people who work hard and live the American dream. I’m all for it. Fact is, if you support horse racing than you are more anti-capitalist than me because the majority of tracks only exist because they get billions in casino profits, corporate welfare and/or taxpayers money. They don’t embark in a successfully financially sustainable business.
    3. Your incessant claims that you take care of your racehorses and, in fact, find all of them a home would be okay if you could substantiate your claims, but you can’t. You can’t because you refuse to provide your owner/trainer name and/or your horse racing stable name and here’s why. If you were to provide that I would be able to immediately display racehorses that you’ve dumped into the claiming ranks without providing their pre-existing conditions or issues which is hardly a person that cares about their horses. This is common operating procedures on most all tracks and I’m sure that you partake or have partaken in this abusive business practice.
    4. I’ve even read ridiculous claims that you support K to 12 education in California. This is incredulous because you take away funding from education and, of course, you were unable and unwilling to provide the details of such claims when I asked.
    5. It’s shocking to most of you that the general public and American populations doesn’t support horse racing. In fact, just like greyhound racing about 70% of Americans don’t support either. So you can continue into your world of delusions and non-facts while going down with the ship.

    I could go on and on, but the comments clearly show exactly why horse racing is in a downward spiral because as long as you have people like this supporting it than nothing will change for the benefit of the racehorses.
    There are no changes that can dispel the myths being spewed out by, most likely, paid public relations people.
    I don’t support any violence in any way, shape or form and that includes violence against any living being including the very racehorses to whom you perpetrate violence on every single day.

    I will continue to be a voice for the racehorses despite your attacks on me and attacks on people who continue to expose the facts about horse racing however vile they may be.

    • Hi Gina. I should point out that I will never publish my name. I know of one guy who got his legs broken with a baseball bat, another who had his truck filled with bullet holes, a woman who had all of her horses shot in the field, and another who was the victim of arson. That was all just over deals gone wrong. I can’t imagine what some lunatic might try if he thought his paycheck was in jeopardy. These are not the finest people but you already know that. You are more brave than I am.

      • Alan, thanks for pointing this out to me.
        I’ve been a recipient of these people even when I was participating in horse racing for a multitude of reasons.
        Nevertheless, your right.
        I’m naive to think that they won’t perpetrate their brutality on anybody who wants to see this end.
        Perhaps I shouldn’t be brave and shouldn’t post my name, but the cats out of the bag now.
        The truth of the matter is if I saw meaningful reforms and changes, which I fought so hard for when I was involved, I would probably still support horse racing.
        I know now, after years of lip service, that the necessary changes will affect their bottom line and they will protect any business practices, however abusive they are, to continue hauling in the billions in profit.
        Money and power can be very dangerous against those who challenge the morality of it and they can find somebody anywhere if they want to.
        A simple drivers license check is all they need to find out where you live.
        It’s scary.

    • OMG! A communist libtard???? These people can’t defend their pro racing position without this low level of name calling? That tells me, they have NO defense. Reminds me of a certain someone in DC.

      Great post!

  5. The racetracks need to put a sign out at the main entrance: “First Stop Before the Slaughterhouse”

  6. Well there is the key. You have someone who is grossly uneducated lacks compassion and has no insight into the being of the horse. He’s just a killer. Is justifications for his business fall short. As the expose showed extraordinary winners were going through his Slaughter Gates broodmares who had none only one hundreds of thousands of dollars but more than likely produced winners, stallions no longer producing with their owners wanted but still not dangerous, Babies broken down in training but still trainable, and winners. I have no thoughts of compassion for that man and see him as the embodiment of evil in this lan, Babies broken down in training but still trainable, and winners. I have no thoughts of compassion for that man and see him as the embodiment of evil in this world. Is complacency and false reassurances are at the bottom of every bad decision made for the horses

  7. Perhaps this expose of slaughter, integral to the racing industry, will help some of the SUPPORTERS of racing better UNDERSTAND what they are SUPPORTING.
    Racing and the abomination that slaughter is go hand in hand.

      • Alan. Please. Check out PR under view from the 8th pole. It sounds like they are talking about Patrick.

      • As Alan replied Nancy, YES, Paulick is referring to Patrick Battuello in his piece. He still cannot bring himself to put Patrick’s name in print – Paulick, a paid racing mouthpiece, has been trying to ignore what Patrick has been exposing since he created Horseracing Wrongs. Paulick practices exactly what he accuses the industry of – shoving their heads in the sand, trying to ignore the realities that are hitting them between the eyes! – horseracing KILLS and there is nothing they can do to stop it!

        So WE work everyday to rescue racing’s crippled and discarded – work to prevent injured and/or used-up racehorses from continued training and racing – work to care for our OWN rescued racehorses with no assistance from the racing owners and trainers who benefitted from their labors – all the while industry insiders and fans support the crippling, killing and slaughter of their horses…and WE are “extreme”?

        Alan, TY for commenting on the PR piece.

      • Alan, of course you are right – they don’t care.
        I was being facetious and directing my comment to the “fans” and those involved with the “We Support Racing” group, particularly the newbies, so to speak. Those caught up in the façade of “glamour” and never give a second thought to the realities of this gambling business – the drugs the confinement, the painful bleeding ulcers, the crippling and much more before the slaughter.

  8. Another heartless facet of horse racing exposed – yet the industry is still sending horses out to die and still being defended by apologists who can’t use anything but the inane rhetoric they’ve been hearing from the industry for years. The cold fact of the matter is that these owners and trainer don’t care anything about their horses beyond what money can be bled from them, and all the crocodile tears, tacos, and live music aren’t going to hide that. Horses are dying. By the thousands.
    Peter Loffel is a vile, belly crawling scum, a cold heartless butcher who makes his money from the misery and suffering of living sentient beings. But at least he’s honest. He doesn’t claim to love these horses. There’s no pretense of this being a sport to justify what he does. He makes no excuses for the blood on his hands. And as long as there’s horse racing, he’ll keep living off the broken, thrown away horses from this industry like a bloated parasite.
    Horse racing is not a sport. It is not a celebration of the Thoroughbred horse. It is legalized abuse and exploitation from serial animal abusers who promote and defend an antiquated society dedicated to destruction and death.

  9. Truth bomb for all you supporters and defenders of this vile business – you are all vile:

    Now after reading this what’s equally disturbing is that this racehorse abuser has another 20 racehorses under his care, custody, and control at Evangeline Downs.
    Now the Louisiana racing commission was made well aware of this situation for days and zippo response.
    Are you fucking kidding me?
    Within hours the principals at Evangeline Downs and the L.A racing commission should have immediately revoked his license, took the racehorses out of his care until an investigation is completed so that no other racehorse will suffer under this abuser, but this is horse racing.
    They operate under total impunity and this business attracts racehorse abusers and killers because they know that they can get away with it and as long as they fill races the industry does nothing which is precisely why no reforms will ever change the foundation of this vile business.
    Which brings me to PR’s next article talking about Patrick “from the 8th pole.”
    As I’ve often stated this business is a discombobulated mess with the principle bodies (The Jockey Club, the HBPA, Owner/Trainer groups etc) all disagreeing.
    They simply can’t agree on even one thing including the use of Lasix.
    In the midst of this mess is a voiceless, non-consenting, sentient being being maimed, and killed.
    Another “investigation” that will lead to nothing – nothing meaningful for these racehorses.
    Here’s another telling thing about all these apologists who come on here and attempt to defend their business spewing the usual lines that shows how delusional they are:
    “Someone needs to figure out what the plan is for these horses,” said Alleman-McKnight. “The racing industry says they can’t keep up, but shouldn’t they?”
    I Promised Youhuff once a beautiful grey gelding was sent out for his first race at 6 years old with very little formal training prior to that.
    This, in and of itself, is racehorse abuse.
    What do they do with their racehorses when they no longer make any money for them?
    This gelding was sent out to the pasture to die more or less and Keith T. Sam should go to jail on Felony Animal Cruelty charges and to know that this bastard bred this horse, brought him into the world for the sole purpose of flipping a buck for him and then when he didn’t he was disposable trash.
    Unfortunately, this is one story of thousands and for you people to come on here and defend this business clearly shows that you need mental assistance in some form.

    • Thank you, Gina for sharing this poor racehorse’s starvation and death with readers here. I had seen his story and the photos of his skeletal frame…all I can say is that his short life of slavery to the industry that didn’t and doesn’t give a damn about him AND his tortuous death by starvation just strengthens my resolve.

      Call me an “extremist” ANY day – I am thankful I have a heart and a soul unlike racing insiders and fans who support an unnecessary industry that kills horses for entertainment…them throws them aside to STARVE to death.

    • Of course they have. Just like they aren’t held accountable for every other atrocity committed against their horses. Just disgusting.

      • I was hoping you would see this Rebecca because we went back and forth when the story broke last week. I cannot believe it but then again we should have known the outcome. Next time they will be more careful and pull the racing socks.

  10. Oh my God Ann, are you that retarded that you don’t get it that these Atrocities are happening BECAUSE of horse racing,you fucking idiot. Horses are innocent pure souls. Whereas humans have free choice to be pure evil.Most of You apologists just want to hold on to some sort of paycheck,because you are all to LAZY to go out and get a REAL job,which doesn’t include : torturing,maiming,horrifically KILLING gentle innocent ANIMALS.

  11. I bet this is the story I tried to put in here. It was done by Australia’s ABC network. The film is about 45 minutes long, very informative about what goes on down under. Maybe it’s on YouTube?

  12. I do not have a problem with horse slaughter However I do have a problem if they are abused I have a problem with all abuse in slaughter houses no matter what the animal is, cows,chickens and hogs.
    I do own 3 horses and one is injured and unridable He is just a grazing lawn ornament and will stay that way out of love. One that is used for show is a retired race horse

  13. You are a liar no one that sells a horse expect them to go to the doggers oportunist murderer of healthy beautiful horses you lieand scheme to get horses for your financial gain I loathe you and what you stand for there is karma in life hope you get yours

    • Everyone knows who he is and exactly where the horse is going when he buys it for the price of meat.

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