The Premarin Industry
Premarin stands for Pregnant Mare Urine and is a medication that contains estrogen which is taken from the urine of pregnant mares. For six months of every year, these Premarin farms keep their pregnant mares in 8ft by 3.5ft stalls where their urine is collected. They do not receive any exercise during this time, which creates health problems. Just before foaling, the mare is let out to pasture. However, once the foal is born, it is typically sold to a feedlot or slaughterhouse. In this industry, the mares are workers and the foals are collateral damage. The well-being of the horses is not considered, and as a result, countless foals are ripped away from their mothers and sent to their death.
Feedlots actually exist, here in America. To me, this concept is unfathomable. How can this country allow horses to be put in feedlots, just waiting for the day they are bought and taken to slaughter? If it wasn’t for horses, America would not be where it is right now. Yet, somehow, countless horses end up in feedlots, and some are pregnant. Once this mare foals, she will be taken to slaughter and the foal will be left at the feedlot. The mare and foal are separated very early, and it’s not only traumatizing, but also incredibly unhealthy for the foal to be left without a mother. If the foal survives, it will be sold to slaughter as soon as it reached 600lbs.
The Nurse Mare Industry
Using a nurse mare is common in the performance horse world where the horses are there to show off and make money. Especially in the racing world, when a horse performs well, the owners want to breed the horse in order to pass down their amazing bloodlines. However, after 11 months of carrying a foal, and not being able to perform, some owners are ready to start showing their horse again and do not want to have to wait another 6 months or so until the foals is weaned.
This is where a nurse mare comes in. There is an industry that exists where lactating mares are provided for performance foals to nurse so that their mothers can return to showing sooner. However, in order to have these mares, they have to have a foal. Yet these foals become unimportant once born and are usually killed or sent to slaughter.
The good news is that you can make a difference. Education is key; the more people that know and take action, the higher likelihood there will be of shutting down these industries. These horses did nothing to deserve that life. They were simply born into a world where humans care more about money than creatures. You can also adopt one of these foals, and give them a forever home where they will be safe and loved. After all, they’re just babies.