Try to Defend/Explain/Justify Just One of These Kills…

Through a FOIA request to the Washington Racing Commission, I have confirmed the following kills at Emerald Downs, the state’s only currently active track, in 2021:

Regis, May 20, Emerald T
“[Multiple] sesamoid fractures with hemorrhage and partial rupture of the lateral branch of the suspensory ligament.”

Regis was three years old and being prepped for his first race.

Incredibly Lucky, Jun 1, Emerald S
“Shipping fever.”

This was the only death that came sans a report. When I inquired, the Commission responded: “Being as the horse arrived with illness it was not sent for necropsy.”

Demand de Lute, Jun 12, Emerald T
“Annular ligament rupture, with flexor tendon luxation; rupture of lateral suspensory ligament branch; sesamoid fracture.”

Then this: “Rupture of the annular ligament and luxation of the flexor tendons is an unusual injury, and it cannot be determined if this occurred before or after the lateral branch of the suspensory ligament ruptured and the medial sesamoid bone fractured. It is possible that there was a pre-existing injury…but unfortunately the ligament became severely macerated when it ruptured and, as a result, it will be very difficult to detect any pre-existing lesions at the rupture site.”

Demand de Lute was four years old and being prepped for his first race.

Scatalycat, Jun 12, Emerald T
“Right forelimb: severely comminuted, open, compound fracture of MC3. Left forelimb: Severe derangement of the left carpus with exteriorization of the majority of the proximal row of carpal bones. There are comminuted, compound fractures of most of the bones of the proximal row, save the ulnar carpal bone.”

That’s two legs utterly destroyed. Scatalycat was six years old.

Great Scott, Jun 19, Emerald T
“This horse’s breakdown was caused by bilateral scapular fractures [that’s both shoulders] – comminuted, acute, severe, with hemorrhage.”

Great Scott was only two years old; he was being prepped for his first race.

Tomorrow’s Mine, Jul 1, Emerald R
“[Multiple] sesamoid fractures with open fetlock luxation. Chronic sclerosis and subchondral necrosis in both [emphasis mine] front limbs – consistent with chronic mechanical overloading; chronic osteoarthritis.”

Tomorrow’s Mine was six years old, and this was her 45th race.

Baja Sur, Jul 11, Emerald R
“Biaxial sesamoid fractures, RF fetlock, with open luxation. Acute fracture of the left accessory carpal bone is presumed to have occurred at the time of the fetlock injury.”

Then this: “The sclerosis and subchondral necrosis in the palmar aspect of both front third metacarpal bones are consistent with chronic mechanical overloading. This change occurs where the metacarpal bone comes in contact with the proximal sesamoid bones during the gallop phase of exercise. In addition to causing damage to the third metacarpal bone, repetitive overloading at this site can cause fatigue injuries in the proximal sesamoid bones that predispose to catastrophic fracture.”

Baja Sur had just turned five – not fully mature yet.

Diction, Aug 5, Emerald R
“Distal sesamoidean ligament rupture, bilateral, acute, severe, with open fetlock luxation and medial proximal sesamoid fracture – both [emphasis mine] forelimbs. The associated fractures are…assumed to be secondary to the ligament rupture.”

Translation: Diction, five, ruptured his ligaments – then broke both his legs in the fall.

The report ended with this: “Unfortunately, both distal sesamoidean ligaments are severely macerated and covered in dirt, and as a result it is very unlikely that a pre-existing lesion could be identified histologically.”

Constant Craving, Aug 18, Emerald S
“Hoof abscess – went into bone. Chronic infection of the distal interphalangeal joint with necrosis of portions of P3, P2, and the navicular bone, and partial disruption of the distal aspect of the deep digital flexor tendon. Chronic desmitis of the lateral branch of the suspensory ligament. It is not known if a traumatic fracture preceded these findings, but a traumatic compromise of the medial hoof capsule could readily explain the majority of these findings.”

Constant Craving was seven years old and had been raced for the 34th time on Jul 1, finishing almost 25 lengths back. She was also “For Sale” – for just $2,500 – that day.

Metatiger, Aug 19, Emerald R
“This horse’s breakdown was caused by an acute, severely comminuted slab fracture of the left third carpal bone and a smaller slab fracture of the left radiocarpal bone. In addition, there is evidence of mild chronic osteoarthritis of the left midcarpal joint and more marked chronic osteoarthritis of the right midcarpal joint.”

Metatiger was just six years old.

Lady Campbell, Aug 26, Emerald R
“This horse’s breakdown was caused by acute, severe fracture of the left medial proximal sesamoid bone and subsequent rupture of the superficial flexor tendon [with] fetlock joint luxation. The condylar sclerosis and subchondral bone hemorrhage/necrosis in both front third metacarpal bones are indicative of chronic mechanical trauma from repetitive loading. This repetitive trauma also causes sclerosis of the proximal sesamoid bones and likely predisposed to complete fracture in this case.” Also: “bilateral, chronic radiocarpal joint osteoarthritis.”

Lady Campbell was just five years old.

Bex, Sep 3, Emerald T
“Acute, severe sesamoid fracture with hemorrhage; palmar annular ligament rupture; superficial flexor tendon rupture; partial rupture of the deep digital flexor tendon.” And once again: “Proximal sesamoid bone fractures most commonly occur a sequela to sclerosis caused by repetitive mechanical trauma/loading during exercise.”

Bex was just three years old.

Dame of the West, Sep 11, Emerald R
“Sesamoid fractures, [both front limbs].” Also: “acute gastric ulceration.”

Dame of the West was just three years old.

Bee Einstein, Sep 26, Emerald R
“Slab fractures, left carpus; fissure fracture, LF MC3; chip fractures in each fetlock. The left radiocarpal fracture is severe and warranted humane euthanasia. Dr. Wilkinson indicated that he thought the affected carpal bones were excessively sclerotic and it is therefore assumed that the complete fractures were precipitated by pre-existing pathology from repetitive loading during training/racing.”

Bee Einstein was just four years old – still an adolescent.

23 Comments

  1. These photos are nausea-inducing and should be put on billboards outside racetracks and outside the betting windows. How anyone can defend and excuse the absolute agony these horses suffered with these injuries – TWO BROKEN SHOULDERS?! – is beyond disgusting.

  2. Constant Craving will be stuck in my head for awhile. That didn’t happen overnight. So sick to think she was raced like that or at least with abscess starting. I really hate all the people involved in putting these poor horses through hell.

    • Me too, Jennifer — ugh! A hoof abscess that was allowed to get to that point, where her whole foot basically ROTTED from the inside. (But of course her loving connections ran her anyway, and proved to the world how hideously they treat their “beloved athletes.”
      Had to look up poor Constant Craving’s record after seeing this. Turns out, she was “trained” by a guy named, not kidding: Jose Navarro. Probably no relation to The Juice Man. But then again, she’d have to have been on some pretty powerful painkillers to even bear weight on that hoof. Poor thing.

      • I did the same thing, Kelly…looked up Constant Craving to see who her final abusers were – seeing another horse killer named Navarro was pretty sickening. And I was just reading about the veterinarian who helped Jorge Navarro drug X Y Jet to death. Filthy POND SCUM. You know the We Support Horse Racing group? – they LOVE Jorge Navarro…get their pictures taken with him, Monmouth’s number one trainer, big ole smiles all around. Elite and rich or cheap and poor, they’re all the same – horses die in their “care”.

        • And I’m sure you noticed the “accomplishments” of her owner, a Michael G. Browne. Mr. Browne apparently decided to acquire her immediately after his first EVER racehorse — a gelding he bred himself named Sa Lute Mr. H — barely made it through his five (lifetime!) races, finishing dead last in most of them. (I’d ask Browne if Sa Lute Mr. H is still alive, but I’m pretty sure he won’t be too eager to divulge his KILL RATE OF 100% for being brand new to the biz.)
          God, I hope he’s out; after racing Constant Craving like that, he and his Juice-Man-wannabe so-called trainer should be up on animal cruelty charges.

      • Kelly, my guess is she was injected with a blocking agent. Her condition had to be long-standing for that astounding amount of pathology. How she suffered…
        What goes on in this business and what these merciless people continue to get away with is shocking. The evidence is incontrovertible.

        • Agree, Rose! And these merciless people continue to post photos of their racehorses confined in their stalls with those damn high-hanging hay bags exclaiming they “LOVE LOVE LOVE [their] horses!” I don’t know – is it denial? Or are they that ignorant about equines that they think an isolated, confined horse (and having his health greatly compromised) is a picture of love?

      • Kelly, my guess is she was injected with a blocking agent. Her condition had to be long-standing for that astounding amount of pathology. How she suffered…
        What goes on in this business and what these merciless people continue to get away with is shocking. The evidence is incontrovertible.

    • I was thinking the same thing, Jennifer – that DID NOT happen overnight. These poor horses at these damn cheap tracks…DAMN IT, they suffer! Bred by WinStar Farm, Constant Craving could have been featured in a “foal patrol” when she was born – you know, one of the ways racing tries to promote itself by showing photos of newborn foals (bred for racing) at “elite” farms. It only took them 7 short years to drain the life out of that adorable little chestnut filly. Despicable. All of them.

  3. Beyond repeated criminal abuse. The DEVIL must be smiling! These evil Criminals
    should be indicted and tortured for every $$$$$ they pocketed under the euphemism called
    “Horse Racing”.

  4. The people who are doing these horse-abusing atrocities to horses are not horsemen! They are animal abusers! They all belong in prison!

  5. I KNOW THESE PICTURES ARE HARD TO SEE BUT THE PEOPLE WHO BET ON THESE HORSES SHOULD BE MADE TO SEE WHAT THE HORSES ARE GOING THROUGTH!!!!!

    • The people who bet consistently are addicts. Their addiction is stronger than any image showing the horrible damage and suffering inflicted on the horses. They are sick as is the business of racing.

      • That has been our experience from what we have seen from those working on the backside as well.Hopeless gamboling addicts working & passing away way to soon in life from their horrible addiction.Gamboling addiction is just as bad as drugs!

  6. This is what you don’t see when the horse falls during a race headliner and then have a picture of any of the above below it. This on one of the monitors outside the welcome to a fun family day at the track. Should do the trick

  7. As an owner of a horse who is prone to foot abscesses, I know that prompt, proper treatment is vital. Hoof abscesses can quickly travel up into the leg, and once they hit the blood stream they can kill a horse in a matter of days. Any halfway responsible owner should be able to spot the lameness and take action. This mare was in all probability hoof-pointing, foot-off-the-ground lame for a long time before that abscess blew her foot apart.

    • They probably did not give a damn. Who with any kind of vision would miss this? And no credit to anyone else around this horse on a daily basis.

    • Mine, too, had one several years ago that made him, as the vet called it, “three-legged-lame.” He’d put NO WEIGHT on it, and it appeared exactly like that description would indicate when he was forced to take a single step. It was horrifying to see, but resolved within a week of soaking, poultices, meds and a custom boot.
      If someone had suggested I block the nerve and ride him anyway, pretty sure I’d have wound up arrested for assault. Yet to these creeps, an abscess is just another speedbump on their road to glory:
      “Just make it go away for ten minutes, Doc; I got some money to make off this old gal.”

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