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Linon
27-03-12, 08:50 PM
A some of you might have guessed, I am somewhat big on research, and supportive of equine research in Australia. It was with some concern that I read todays Editorial by Chris Hector in The Horse Magazine (April, 2012, page 14).

Hector describes how the RSPCA and Paul McGreevy effectively ganged up on barrier attendant at the Warrnambool races. He was charged with animal cruelty after a horse severely injured itself (broken leg) during a race. The attendant was forced to make a very difficult decision regarding removing the horse from the track to prevent other horses crashing into it on the second lap, or worse still, the horse rejoining the field with a broken leg.

A horrible decision that had to be made very quickly.

McGreevy's argument was that the field could have been diverted around the horse, and that the horses flight response had been effectively restrained by the jockey making it walk in tight circles around him.

Hmmmm. Horse with broken leg, other horses running a full tilt, bearing down on jockey and horse with broken leg. Barrier attendant gets horse off track. A horrible situation, that could have been made a lot worse if the horse had remained on the track.

Until reading this, I had (in general) been a supporter of McGreevy and his work. Like many on this forum, I filled in the recent questionnaire about what kind of horse people preferred.

Not any more.

McGreevy's support of the RSPCA obviously has a subtext. The RSPCA wants to get rid of jumps racing, and has taken to having individuals charged and run through courts of law to prove a point. Of particular concern is McGreevy's utter lack of common sense given the circumstances described above. Having seen academic vets up close though (many of whom were simply failed vets who couldn't handle working with animals, either physically or emotionally), it doesn't surprise me. Some of the biggest mistakes I ever saw with animals have been through incompetent vets.

What next? Think of all the ways that you, either in your everyday existence with horses, or at a competition you could be charged if something went catastrophically wrong.

I have been following this debate for some time - and I am aware of the tactics that the RSPCA in England employed to further their finances (type "rspca inheritance battle" into google and see what comes up).

Very obviously, the RSPCA, with McGreevy as their horse behaviour "expert" has declared that jumps racing will be ended. Very likely, eventing will be next on their radar, then jumping and dressage.

Then maybe we won't be allowed to have any horses at all.

So - me personally? I will no longer support McGreevy, or his associates in any way, shape or form. No filling out of questionnaires, no attendance at conferences, no support personally, professionally or in any fora. I may well decide to write to the Australian Research Council with my concerns (which is where his research credibility and funds largely come from), as well as the Animal Ethics Committee at his University, and the relevant state Vet Registration Board.

No financial or any other support for the RSPCA either (I have one of their rescue dogs currently parked at my feet). There are many other animal charities who do good work. My money, time and respect will go to them instead.

No one wants cruel treatment of any animal. But such litigation is not about preventing cruel treatment, but rather a political and financial agenda carried out in a very hamfisted and wrongful manner.

Harriette
27-03-12, 09:01 PM
It's a little unclear above,
But Mr McGreevy is
'Paul McGreevy is Senior Lecturer in Animal Behavior at the University of Sydney's Faculty of Veterinary Science' from his 2005 book, Equine Behavior
A GUIDE FOR VETERINARIANS AND EQUINE SCIENTISTS. Paul McGreevy, BVSc, PhD

He seems a scientist of credibility, perhaps there is more to the story?

midnightly
27-03-12, 09:06 PM
I don't know what to say. I have a horse and a cat who are RSPCA rescues. Particularly in the case of the horse (Bella) the RSPCA was wonderful. Plenty of sheep in my area who would say a big thank you to the RSPCA too.

Happy to see jumps racing ended - far too many deaths - and injuries that we know not the results. Grammar. Sorry.

I think it's a huge stretch to think that eventing and show-jumping and dressage will be targetted just because jumps racing is banned ....

The RSPCA is out there actually doing. Other animal refuges are just that - animal refuges. They don't actually have to front up.

The RSPCA people have to go to properties and remove animals and/or enforce conditions ... remember one was shot dead?

I will have to read the THM article of course .... sounds like somebody screwed up ... but I seriously dislike so much criticism of the RSPCA whose hands are tied so numbingly by our stupid laws.

Fair Embrace
27-03-12, 09:24 PM
People and organisationss should not attempt to interfere in situations they do not fully understand! The RSPCA target racing because of the publicity they gain. The outcomes from many of their prosecutions don't make headlines. They are wasting way too much money in their attempts to persecute racing and the people in it, this money could be used for the real victims of animal cruelty.

Linon
27-03-12, 09:32 PM
It's a little unclear above,
But Mr McGreevy is
'Paul McGreevy is Senior Lecturer in Animal Behavior at the University of Sydney's Faculty of Veterinary Science' from his 2005 book, Equine Behavior
A GUIDE FOR VETERINARIANS AND EQUINE SCIENTISTS. Paul McGreevy, BVSc, PhD

He seems a scientist of credibility, perhaps there is more to the story?

I would suggest that there is. I would suggest that his first degree is vet sic, and he has taken a research route (which also happens to be what the Australian Nobel Laureate Peter Doherty has done).

The Horse Mag has it's own synopsis, but here is a link to the article http://www.theage.com.au/sport/horseracing/relief-at-last-for-horseman-at-centre-of-jumps-storm-20120229-1u3dr.html

I have worked with many vets in my professional career. I have worked with vets in the Veterinary Pharmaceutical Industry, in ecological studies overseas, within the Australian and American University sector, and personally, with my own animals.

I have not worked with McGreevy personally. But his comments on the efforts of the barrier attendant suggest someone who is not really comfortable at a practical level with horses. In fact, if the barrier attendant had done what McGreevy suggested, I am certain the outcome would have been a lot worse.

Many of the questions and comments put up on this forum relate to training our neddies. Often simple, straightforward stuff. The barrier attendant had to make some quick decisions to prevent further catastrophe. What would you do if a horse broke its leg in the middle of a racetrack with other horses about to come around the turn??

How would you feel if you were then charged with animal cruelty, supported by a an academic scientist who thinks that if you circle a horse around you (one with a broken leg) in the middle of a race that all will be good? That somehow, the other racing horses can be diverted and race past, and nothing will be made worse?

I'd ask McGreevy to prove his worth, to do his experiment, and personally stand in the middle of a racetrack, and ask, in real time, that the horses be made to divert around him.

But I'd call the ambulance first, to let them know what was about to happen.

midnightly
27-03-12, 09:38 PM
What is your point, Linon? Happy to hear you, but not understanding the point you are trying to make - or what good you expect do come of it.

charlie45
27-03-12, 09:40 PM
People and organisationss should not attempt to interfere in situations they do not fully understand! The RSPCA target racing because of the publicity they gain. The outcomes from many of their prosecutions don't make headlines. They are wasting way too much money in their attempts to persecute racing and the people in it, this money could be used for the real victims of animal cruelty.

I agree....the RSPCA turn a blind eye too often when no publicity is to be gained.....and here we go again on the jumps racing bandwagon....

I will never support the RSPCA while it wastes so much money hounding jumps racing....

What about the wealthy so called horse breeders who put their in foal mares down the back paddock and dont look at them for months on end.....I know quite a few of these so called breeders....they dont check them, and they dont care. Skinny underfed mares, bones sticking out, and they are expected to produce a foal that is a winner....They should be the ones the RSPCA go after.

Not some attendant who in a split second was trying to do his best to avoid a major accident.

Djangoandjacana
27-03-12, 09:43 PM
Hidden agendas everywhere I reckon. I have a passing acquaintance with Paul and he is a horse rider and interested in dressage. I think it is a long bow to tie stopping jump racing with stopping all horse activities. Unless we are talking PETA .

Haven't read the article so cannot comment on this particular circumstance

Harriette
27-03-12, 09:49 PM
Perhaps he has been called in as the expert witness, to offer his eminent view,
Pretty standard
Doesn't mean he has a bent either way, I would have thought.
Surely an impartial, disinterested expert is preferred,
Perhaps that is all he is.

I don't know that academic merit is a killer of horse savvy.
He can have some interesting ideas, Dr Miller doesn't rock everyone's boat either.
Things are rarely black and white, how ever much our brain needs them to be.

likewhatnot
27-03-12, 10:00 PM
Well I read The Age article. And if I was Mr Duff I'd be sueing the pants of the RSPCA and McGreevy.

How is it cruelty to allow a horse to hop off the racetrack holding it's leg up and therefore preventing the risk of another accident but it is the right thing to do to allow the horse to hop around you in a circle in the middle of the track while the rest of the field bare down?

In either case the horse has a broken leg - that has already happened. And the amount of pain the horse experiences having the leg swinging because it is broken is no more than it does having it swinging because it is hopping out of the way.

When the hindleg is broken the horse can very successfully weight the forelegs and hop on one hind leg - it might be sad and ugly but it is the normal thing for a horse to do in those circumstances. It is actually harder for them to move with a broken foreleg.

But in the horse's case the PAIN isn't greater than with a ruptured tendon or for some horses a hoof abscess.

Treating the attendent so brutally was the worst kind of bullying by the RSPCA and McGreevy and shouldn't be countenanced under any circumstances.

midnightly
27-03-12, 10:14 PM
Ok so now I'm understanding more of the incident .. thank you. Sorry if I'm so slow .. hard to concdentrate when OH has the tv so loud.

Absolutely agree.

Have had a broken ankle and leg (all in one) ... it wasn't the pain, it was the shock. You know something's busted and you can't go on - but you feel no pain. Until later - when they have to hold you down.

Linon
27-03-12, 10:32 PM
What is your point, Linon? Happy to hear you, but not understanding the point you are trying to make - or what good you expect do come of it.

With the longer term aim of getting rid of jumps racing, the RSPCA, and McGreevy as their resident expert, have decided to pick on a barrier attendant doing his best under very difficult circumstances.

They have shown that they are prepared to charge an individual for something that was more an act of bravery, than an act of cruelty. In doing so, they caused that man and his family hell for 2 years. The social cost, the financial cost, the anxiety, the loss of reputation.

There is nothing to stop them doing the same to you. Horses are wonderful, but unpredictable. An accident, a misunderstanding, something taken out of context, could leave you in the same position as Mr Duff. My understanding is that you are a high level dressage judge?? In which case, your entire judging career would be called into question. You would be forever tarred by the fact that you were charged for animal cruelty, even if it never made it to court. That's it, all that work, time, passion, gone. Then there are the people who would only know the gossip and shun you. Doors close.

There are few checks and balances in place to prevent abuses of power in organisations such as the RSPCA. Those that do exist are very expensive - courts of law. Mr Duff was a victim of legal bullying. Check and balances should be put in place to prevent this happening again.

And for the record, I do not know Mr Duff, nor do I have any association with jumps racing. I only found out about it today when I opened the magazine.

mackiemad
27-03-12, 10:52 PM
rspca australia is the organisation accused of funding paul's research in this instance.

rspca victoria is the organisation that actually puts money, time and resources into banning jumps racing - a sport which is already gone in all other states bar SA btw. (if they actually bred jumps racers here and ran it like they do in eurpoe we wouldn't have the high casualty rates we do, but generally it is poorly bred flat stayers who fail miserably at flat racing and so are turned to jumps racing as another career. not all but most of the horses enter jumps this way and it isn't ideal at all)

i agree that the rspca shoudln't be judge jury and executioner, and that the system is not right - they shouldn't be the ones investigating or prosecuting. however THAT is NOT the rspca's fault. if the state or federal givernments actually got off their behinds and took on some freaking responsibilty and brought all the laws into line and put in place animal welfare squads within the police then this wouldn't be an issue.

i don't think that they shold have 'gone after' a gate attendant who was trying to do the right thing (i'm not going to debate what the right thing to do was, here i am woefully uninformed) however the only way the rspca has EVER been able to change laws is by bringing a high profile case to court and creating public outrage - since their inception in australia in 1871 this has been the case. should they have? no. but it seems they thought it the only way to change what they see as an outdated law.

honestly i'm sick to death with ppl bagging the rspca. is it perfect? hell no. is it the only animal welfare org that has to act as policemen, lawyers and advocate? yes. it HAS to be in the public eye in order to get funds (remember, all state branches and the federal branch are not-for-profit orgs) and to do what it is supposed to. after all, how can you PREVENT cruelty or change legislation without being in the public eye. they ahve to walk a fine line and yes, they screw that walk up, often. if the laws allowed them to do what they needed, if magistrates actually used the full extent of punishment available to them and if the state governments fixed the way it all currently operates by moving the inspectorate duties to the police and them having them answerable to the usual channels...

donning flame proof suit, tired and going to bed kind of uninterested...

midnightly
27-03-12, 10:55 PM
Thanks Linon.

I think I'm gonna have to change my name. or flounce silently.

There is no way I would do anything so stupid as to be charged with cruelty. There must be more to this story.

midnightly
27-03-12, 10:57 PM
HUGE APPLAUSE FOR MACKIEMAID!!!!!

You go girl!!! :) And thank you!!

Think1st
27-03-12, 11:30 PM
Thanks Linon.

I think I'm gonna have to change my name. or flounce silently.

There is no way I would do anything so stupid as to be charged with cruelty. There must be more to this story.

But Linon's point is that from the information presented in the article, the testimony of the other three vets and the fact that the charges were eventually dropped it would appear that the barrier attendant didn't perform an act of cruelty either - yet he was charged and suffered through two years of court appearances and stress to clear his name.

skymare
28-03-12, 12:04 AM
i understand what you mean linon. there are very political ppl running rspca. slowly i have turned away from them. i see more and more i do not like. and more and more i disagree with. i would hate for us to go the way of american rescues. holy moly i have read stories about some serious corruption and abuses of power over there.
mackiemaid i think that's unfair to say linon is just bagging. she/he is critisizing with legitimate concerns. why shouldn't she voice them?

Linon
28-03-12, 10:11 AM
rspca australia is the organisation accused of funding paul's research in this instance.

rspca victoria is the organisation that actually puts money, time and resources into banning jumps racing - a sport which is already gone in all other states bar SA btw. (if they actually bred jumps racers here and ran it like they do in eurpoe we wouldn't have the high casualty rates we do, but generally it is poorly bred flat stayers who fail miserably at flat racing and so are turned to jumps racing as another career. not all but most of the horses enter jumps this way and it isn't ideal at all)

i agree that the rspca shoudln't be judge jury and executioner, and that the system is not right - they shouldn't be the ones investigating or prosecuting. however THAT is NOT the rspca's fault. if the state or federal givernments actually got off their behinds and took on some freaking responsibilty and brought all the laws into line and put in place animal welfare squads within the police then this wouldn't be an issue.

i don't think that they shold have 'gone after' a gate attendant who was trying to do the right thing (i'm not going to debate what the right thing to do was, here i am woefully uninformed) however the only way the rspca has EVER been able to change laws is by bringing a high profile case to court and creating public outrage - since their inception in australia in 1871 this has been the case. should they have? no. but it seems they thought it the only way to change what they see as an outdated law.

honestly i'm sick to death with ppl bagging the rspca. is it perfect? hell no. is it the only animal welfare org that has to act as policemen, lawyers and advocate? yes. it HAS to be in the public eye in order to get funds (remember, all state branches and the federal branch are not-for-profit orgs) and to do what it is supposed to. after all, how can you PREVENT cruelty or change legislation without being in the public eye. they ahve to walk a fine line and yes, they screw that walk up, often. if the laws allowed them to do what they needed, if magistrates actually used the full extent of punishment available to them and if the state governments fixed the way it all currently operates by moving the inspectorate duties to the police and them having them answerable to the usual channels...

donning flame proof suit, tired and going to bed kind of uninterested...

No need for flame proof suits. I'm not the abusive type.

With regard to the first statement "funding of Pauls research". Which research was that? Could you please refer me to it? Was it assessed by other scientists and published in international peer reviewed scientific journals? Unless it has been, then it will not be seen as having much scientific merit.

Jumps racing still exists in Victoria.

Not-for-profit does not mean they acquit all funds at the end of the financial year.

No one expects the RSPCA to be perfect. As with child protection, there are so many shades of grey (think of how many hairs get split on this forum over arcane aspects of dressage!), and it is very difficult to make judgments.

However, in the case of Mr Duff, senior management (and I wish to specifically state here that I generally hold in high regard those at the coal face - however, management well.....:)), have made the decision to charge a man who had to make difficult decision on the spot, with no support. The decision to charge that man, and go through the court process would have been made by the senior management of RSPCA. There would have been meetings over how best to get this highlighted in the press, and how to manipulate public opinion. It was not done ad hoc.

However, the courts did not play ball, and consequently, with his impractical comments McGreevy has made himself look like a fool, and the RSPCA, by bringing this to court at all, look like bullies.

Therefore, I call into question the judgment of those who decided to proceed with charging Mr Duff.

Consequently, I wonder how many other examples of similar poor judgment exist within the organisation.

I am well aware of the limitations of charities, of the strategies used to place them in the media and highlight their cause. Of the bitching, infighting, incompetence, social cruelty and bullying. The charities which have 10's of millions of dollars in reserve, have fulfilled their charitable programmes, but still roll out the tear jerker ads to make more money, the charities that pay their CEO's hundreds of thousands of dollars per year, but pay their front-line staff the minimum wage and squeeze their entitlements. The charity whose CEO earns at least $300 000, but who placed foster kids with known pedophiles because they did not do due diligence.

So, yes, there is often a lot more than meets the eye.

I know this because my husband was CEO of one for a number of years. He left because of the sheer idiocy of so much of the sector. Alas, he did not earn hundreds of thousands a year... but he did earn respect.

Fyadara
28-03-12, 12:20 PM
I don't agree with the gate attendant being charged, and I don't like the RSPCA being the ones responsible to do so, it should be the responsibility of government.

I can see how the RSPCA plays political games, and so does Animal Australia with their campaign against live export. However if you want any influence in this country you HAVE TO play the political game, play on people's emotions and look for the greatest effects. It can be very frustrating coming with evidence, talking to policymakers and see absolutely nothing done unless they think it will affect votes.

Linon
28-03-12, 01:00 PM
I don't agree with the gate attendant being charged, and I don't like the RSPCA being the ones responsible to do so, it should be the responsibility of government.

I can see how the RSPCA plays political games, and so does Animal Australia with their campaign against live export. However if you want any influence in this country you HAVE TO play the political game, play on people's emotions and look for the greatest effects. It can be very frustrating coming with evidence, talking to policymakers and see absolutely nothing done unless they think it will affect votes.

That does not give you the right to crucify some poor bugger just trying to do the right thing.

Bring things to public attention, yes, but don't play such games with innocents.

acaciaalba
28-03-12, 01:27 PM
did any of you actually see the incident ? it was gruesome to put it mildly.
in that situation, with a spur of the moment decision to be made, its very hard to crucify the attendant, IMHO.
having said that,,,it was terrible watching the horse.
instead of going after the attendant he should be going after jumps racing across the board.
i hate jumps races.

leec
28-03-12, 01:33 PM
I'm glad the attendant has been cleared and very sorry for what he and his family have had to go through, I believe he did the right thing for the horse.

BUT, in my opinion jumps racing should be banned.

Fair Embrace
28-03-12, 07:20 PM
Jumps racing is on its last legs anyway........ The big problem is that the RSPCA seem to only want to take on the high profile cases that will gaain them alot of publicity, the way they are going about it is making thm a major subject of ridicule.
If they really want to do something positive they should be lobbbying to have all animal owners licensed, simple really. You want a pet, you apply for a license, your animal is automatically registered to you and you are responsible for it, if you fail to look after your animal properly you end up suffering.

acaciaalba
28-03-12, 07:23 PM
what she said. ^^^^^^^^^^^^
and apply it to breeding kids as well.

charlie45
28-03-12, 10:33 PM
180 horses at jumps trials last week.......up from 90 this time last year

Jumps racing is far from on its last legs....

And is gearing up for its biggest and best season yet.

teetee
28-03-12, 10:50 PM
With a 20% fatality rate jumps racing is completely unjustifiable in this country, it cannot be compared to other horse sports with vastly smaller accident and fatality figures.

It does sound like politicking and game playing and is unfortunate for the steward put in that awful position but as Fyadara says sometimes that's the only way to get results in this climate, if it's not outrageous people simply don't care enough to call for change. That's the sad reality of animal welfare issues, only extreme instances are newsworthy and actionable.

Reminds me of that saying, what's worse, evil done in the name of good or good done in the name of evil?

LetMeJump
29-03-12, 02:26 AM
With a 20% fatality rate jumps racing is completely unjustifiable in this country, it cannot be compared to other horse sports with vastly smaller accident and fatality figures.

It does sound like politicking and game playing and is unfortunate for the steward put in that awful position but as Fyadara says sometimes that's the only way to get results in this climate, if it's not outrageous people simply don't care enough to call for change. That's the sad reality of animal welfare issues, only extreme instances are newsworthy and actionable.

Reminds me of that saying, what's worse, evil done in the name of good or good done in the name of evil?



And do you know WHY it has such a bad % atm Teetee?? Because of the numerous years we had to suffer the hideously designed yellow jumps, wich was DESIGNED with the help of no other than HUGH WIRTH of the RSPCA.

So yes, the fatality rate did increase, we did have a few bad years, prizemoney dropped and trainers started to dwindle away, racing was governed by Labor and the racing minister wife, was the head of thw anti jump brigade. They realllly had a hope. NOT.

Now that Liberal is in, and we have a decent racing minister in Mr Napthine, who has injected 10 million into jumps racing over the next FOUR years, we have seen the new jumps bought and designed by the french jumps racing industry, we have seen new trainers and a lot more owners and horse come back into the sport, in just 2 short years!@ Give us time and we will be a big industry again!

In regards to the RSPCA, those of you who support them, really need to have a closer look. HUGH WIRTH is a HUGE advocate of PETA, who employs numerous people and gives plenty of cash donations to make racing look bad.

The RSPCA last year, ran 2-3 FULL PAGE adverts against jumps racing and racing, wich cost them $30,000 EACH page. 90k. Surely that could of gone to better use in getting another inspectorate on board??? They say they dont have enough....

And its not just jumps racing, they have already started gathering information on eventing, and already put forward motions for it to be banned at the olympics, theyve started on dog owners, and cat owners. WHAT next?

teetee
29-03-12, 06:10 AM
You can be as patronizing as you like mate but the fact remains that there have been unacceptably high numbers of fatalities in jumps racing for many many years, well before the band aid changes to the jumps. It was up to the industry to fix the problem if it wanted to survive so there is no point blaming Hugh Wirth or anyone else.

The dog world has also been living in a bubble for decades and now they are paying the price too.

Linon
29-03-12, 08:52 AM
It does sound like politicking and game playing and is unfortunate for the steward put in that awful position but as Fyadara says sometimes that's the only way to get results in this climate, if it's not outrageous people simply don't care enough to call for change. That's the sad reality of animal welfare issues, only extreme instances are newsworthy and actionable.

Reminds me of that saying, what's worse, evil done in the name of good or good done in the name of evil?[/QUOTE]

What happened to MrDuff was not unfortunate.

It was wrong.

Tactically, all the legal action has done is show McGreevy to be facile and the RSPCA to be bullies.

That is not going to advance their agenda one bit.

lalique
29-03-12, 08:57 AM
What a bloody circus.

The poor attendant was doing what he believed was the right thing (and possibly following racecourse protocol- remove obstacles/obstructions from the course?)

The poor horse did break a leg and was in no more more pain being removed from the track than hopping in ciricles- pain associated with movement is the same pain if the horse is in a circle or in a straight line, no brainer there is there!

Would the same attendant still have been charged if he left the horse on the track, but this time for endangering a human life/lives (jockey) and the other riders/horses?

Really he was potentially dammed what ever action he took, if you want to nit pick.

What would have happened if the horse had remained on the track and then excaped when the field went past, would the jockey been charged with cruelty for allowing the horse to run off with its broken leg?

The bottom line is that the entire incident was exactly what the RSPCA was looking for to bring their cause (banning jumps racing) into the spot light. A controversial court case is always a high profile media circus, throw in a huge does of humanitarian sentimentality (poor horsie syndrome) and viola the RSPCA has the publics attention big time. Just look at us here! While there are opposers there are also ones who fully support the RSPCA

I dont see hospitals taking legal action against people who have put an injuured person into a car and driven them to hospital, despite what can be equally horrible injuries. Humans with broken bones are regularly helped into private cars and brought to hospital, in many cases they are given a shoudler to lean on and hop to the vehicle. The point being that you do what you believe is best in the situation, you make a call on how best to handle things and then act on that decision- and you sure dont expect to be taken to court for doing your best in an emmergency

Jane_1
29-03-12, 09:36 AM
I dont see hospitals taking legal action against people who have put an injuured person into a car and driven them to hospital, despite what can be equally horrible injuries. Humans with broken bones are regularly helped into private cars and brought to hospital, in many cases they are given a shoudler to lean on and hop to the vehicle. The point being that you do what you believe is best in the situation, you make a call on how best to handle things and then act on that decision- and you sure dont expect to be taken to court for doing your best in an emmergency

Actually you can be charged for this if your actions make the injury worse, especially so if you have even so much as a first aid certificate. Any law that encourages people NOT to help others is stupid imo.

Stocky
29-03-12, 10:05 AM
Has anyone actually been charged for trying to render assistance? I thought the Good Samaritan Act was designed to cover volunteers in that sort of situation and that no on had been charged unless their actions were proved to be grossly negligent.

This case with the horse is horrible any way you look at it. I have not seen the footage so can not honestly comment on it.

Odessa
29-03-12, 10:30 AM
Very obviously, the RSPCA, with McGreevy as their horse behaviour "expert" has declared that jumps racing will be ended. Very likely, eventing will be next on their radar, then jumping and dressage.

Then maybe we won't be allowed to have any horses at all.


oh god come on! is that really what you think?

Odessa
29-03-12, 10:35 AM
And do you know WHY it has such a bad % atm Teetee?? Because of the numerous years we had to suffer the hideously designed yellow jumps, wich was DESIGNED with the help of no other than HUGH WIRTH of the RSPCA.

So yes, the fatality rate did increase, we did have a few bad years, prizemoney dropped and trainers started to dwindle away, racing was governed by Labor and the racing minister wife, was the head of thw anti jump brigade. They realllly had a hope. NOT.

Now that Liberal is in, and we have a decent racing minister in Mr Napthine, who has injected 10 million into jumps racing over the next FOUR years, we have seen the new jumps bought and designed by the french jumps racing industry, we have seen new trainers and a lot more owners and horse come back into the sport, in just 2 short years!@ Give us time and we will be a big industry again!

In regards to the RSPCA, those of you who support them, really need to have a closer look. HUGH WIRTH is a HUGE advocate of PETA, who employs numerous people and gives plenty of cash donations to make racing look bad.

The RSPCA last year, ran 2-3 FULL PAGE adverts against jumps racing and racing, wich cost them $30,000 EACH page. 90k. Surely that could of gone to better use in getting another inspectorate on board??? They say they dont have enough....

And its not just jumps racing, they have already started gathering information on eventing, and already put forward motions for it to be banned at the olympics, theyve started on dog owners, and cat owners. WHAT next?

As for the jumps racing -
are they trying to make it look bad or are they just showing people what it really is?
good on them for running 2-3 full page adverts informing people about jumps racing.

re eventing etc -
Tell me more about why they want to ban eventing? I had no idea about that. and what are they doing with dog owners and cat owners??

LetMeJump
29-03-12, 11:39 AM
As for the jumps racing -
are they trying to make it look bad or are they just showing people what it really is?
good on them for running 2-3 full page adverts informing people about jumps racing.

re eventing etc -
Tell me more about why they want to ban eventing? I had no idea about that. and what are they doing with dog owners and cat owners??

There was no information on the full page adverts except for photos of horses falling at a jump and slogans like this must end etc etc.

If Hugh Wirth has his way, dog owners wont ever be allowed to keep their dog outside, they have to be walked every couple of hours. Pretty much if you work, you cant have a dog, if you dont work, you cant afford a dog, same as cats.

But yet the vic RSPCA alone pull in over 4-6million a year just in donations, on top of the government funding they get (ohhh whoops they arent meant to get gov funding supposedly!) but yet they euthanise over 250,000 cats and dogs a year.

With eventing, they want it banned because of the falls and saying its cruel to the horses, and traumatizing to the public to see these falls.

If the inspectorate was given a chance they prefer all neglected horses and racehorses to be sent to the knackery because then they dont have to worry about them, same with the cattle and other livestock.

Odessa
29-03-12, 11:55 AM
There was no information on the full page adverts except for photos of horses falling at a jump and slogans like this must end etc etc.

If Hugh Wirth has his way, dog owners wont ever be allowed to keep their dog outside, they have to be walked every couple of hours. Pretty much if you work, you cant have a dog, if you dont work, you cant afford a dog, same as cats.

But yet the vic RSPCA alone pull in over 4-6million a year just in donations, on top of the government funding they get (ohhh whoops they arent meant to get gov funding supposedly!) but yet they euthanise over 250,000 cats and dogs a year.

With eventing, they want it banned because of the falls and saying its cruel to the horses, and traumatizing to the public to see these falls.

If the inspectorate was given a chance they prefer all neglected horses and racehorses to be sent to the knackery because then they dont have to worry about them, same with the cattle and other livestock.

re dogs -

your post is a bit confusing. what do you mean that they wont let you have your dogs outside? as for the work and dogs - of course you shouldnt be allowed to have a dog if you leave it locked in your apartment all day? you must agree with that? introducing a law that makes it illegal to keep a dog locked inside all day - im all for it!! if you cant afford doggy day care, or a dog nanny to walk your dog, or you cant take it to work with you and it has to be locked inside, then no you sholdnt be allowed to have a dog. dont you agree? same with a horse, if you cant provide for the horses most basic needs you shouldnt be allowed to have a horse.

yes good on them for enuthanising cats and dogs that no one wants and that are suffering. but dont blame the RSPCA for that. they have to do that because people buy pets that they cant take care of. for example a dog that they cant walk. have you ever been to one of their shelters or had a look on their webpage? what do you suggest that they do with all their animals instead of putting them to sleep?

I agree with you that its crazy if they want to ban eventing! they can regulate it better, but not ban it.

Supersport
29-03-12, 12:38 PM
Anyone on here ever held a horse with a broken leg? Well, I have (twice) and I can state that pain does not come into it at all and any vet that does not know this has obviously never practiced, nor consulted with one that has. On two occasions I have asked the vet why the horse does not feel pain when it's leg is clearly snapped through, and we have discussed this phenomenon at length.

One of the unfortunate animals I was holding had been hit by a car and it's offside forearm bone was severed and also it's jugular vein on the near side. Besides the fact that it's leg was dangling and blood was squirting over me out of the garden horse like vein, this horse was hell bent on calling it's friends and running off up the road. The endorphins take over and the horse appears unaware of any form of pain. Had the racing attendant stayed on the track as the galloping horses came by, it would be almost impossible to hold that horse safely. Most likely rejoining the galloping herd and possibly killing more horses and jockeys.

The RSPCA lost my respect years ago after that ridiculous TV program where they got their kicks out of the regularly repeated statement "humanely euthenised" and the appalling handling of the load of cattle tipped out on a highway.

Last year I listened to a brief lecture by Dr Bidda Jones (RSPCA), and believe me, when people like her get some authority and control we are ALL in trouble. It is her belief that any action that the animal does not consent to doing, should be stopped. She was even studying the Amish in the US to decide whether they should even be allowed to use horses for transport as they do not drive vehicles. Thing long and hard of the consequences of this!

It is when academics that have never practiced or experienced our industry, start to gain public hearing, I dread to think of the consequences. I am not a fan of jumps racing or flat racing, but I do respect each persons chosen discipline, and have always thought that effort could be made to make it safer, though my only answer was to not have them hurdling in a close pack as they do - not a practical solution.

All our disciplines need to be aware that they are under public scrutiny and that these types of people are enjoying the public support of these campaigns.

Odessa
29-03-12, 12:55 PM
Supersport -

I dont really get what you mean when you say that Dr Bidda Jones said that "any action that the animal does not consent to doing, should be stopped" - do you know what she meant by that?
so you are trying to make me believe that Ms Jones feels that if a horse doesnt want to load a float then it shouldnt have to.
sounds a bit odd. are you sure that the sentence is not taken out of context?

did she give an example of what she meant when she said that?

and about the Amish - what were her reasons for saying that they shouldnt be allowed to use horses? did she provide any examples of horse beeing mistreated? I used to live in nr 1 Amish area of the US and saw amish and their horses on a daily basis. I have seen some Amish using those head collars to pull horses heads up and back when pulling carts. (like they did in the 17th centry) thats the only thing that I can think of that was close to abuse and that I didnt agree with. every other horse that I saw looked happy and well treated.

acaciaalba
29-03-12, 01:13 PM
180 horses at jumps trials last week.......up from 90 this time last year

Jumps racing is far from on its last legs....

And is gearing up for its biggest and best season yet.

oh god ! how awefull if it is !
yesterday, at Sandown, first jump race of the season and a horse is euthanised, and people taking pictures were escorted from the track by security ( some anti jumps mob ).
if thats the start of the season it can only get worse.

Supersport
29-03-12, 01:13 PM
Odesssa - that is most definitely what she meant -

"any action that the animal does not consent to doing, should be stopped" - do you know what she meant by that? and she was totally serious.

Not taken out of context and the deathly silence in the room showed that everyone else was just as concerned as I was. It does not matter whether the animal is being treated well or not. The bottom line for her is "does the animal choose to do this? The only thing a horse chooses to do is eat, drink and reproduce - and that is what she thinks they should be doing. The Amish are using the horses for their own selfish reasons, and unless the horses walked out of their paddocks, hooked up the harnesses, asked you to hop on board and walked off, then it is not their choice to do so.

Her claim to fame at that point was the change in rules for the types of whips jockeys could use. Now, I am not a jockey, but know horses well enough to know that in full gallop with a bunch of horses all around doing the same, what the jockey does with the whip would have very little response from the horse. Personally doubt they would even feel it. I would be more concerned about what they are doing with the whip behind the scenes than on the track, and there is no ruling about what they use there!!!!!

She is serious and at that point, had a lot of public support.

Diana
29-03-12, 01:21 PM
Golly. When I was younger our little dog was an outside dog (my dad hates animals inside - even the Birmans are a stretch!) and we once managed to sneak her inside after a wash...... Well she couldn't wait to get outside! So she *obviously* hated being outside. :rolleyes:
The dog my husband and I own is a farm dog and although he would probably like being inside...after he's been rolling in dead sheep/sheep poo/dog poo/horse poo I don't really want him in my house :confused:

Odessa
29-03-12, 01:46 PM
Odesssa - that is most definitely what she meant -

"any action that the animal does not consent to doing, should be stopped" - do you know what she meant by that? and she was totally serious.

Not taken out of context and the deathly silence in the room showed that everyone else was just as concerned as I was. It does not matter whether the animal is being treated well or not. The bottom line for her is "does the animal choose to do this? The only thing a horse chooses to do is eat, drink and reproduce - and that is what she thinks they should be doing. The Amish are using the horses for their own selfish reasons, and unless the horses walked out of their paddocks, hooked up the harnesses, asked you to hop on board and walked off, then it is not their choice to do so.

Her claim to fame at that point was the change in rules for the types of whips jockeys could use. Now, I am not a jockey, but know horses well enough to know that in full gallop with a bunch of horses all around doing the same, what the jockey does with the whip would have very little response from the horse. Personally doubt they would even feel it. I would be more concerned about what they are doing with the whip behind the scenes than on the track, and there is no ruling about what they use there!!!!!

She is serious and at that point, had a lot of public support.

Thats absurd! do you know what position she holds in RSPCA?

sunday
29-03-12, 01:57 PM
That's funny. You could argue that my kids don't willingly 'choose' to do their jobs around the house either, they pretty much are told they have to do them or they don't get pocket money/to go around to friends/to go on the computer etc.

If there weren't some kind of 'consequence' to not helping out, they wouldn't help out.
Teenage boys would probably argue it's not 'natural' for them to clean, tidy and be considerate of others. Maybe they could talk to Dr Jones and she could champion their cause.

likewhatnot
29-03-12, 02:29 PM
Anyone on here ever held a horse with a broken leg? Well, I have (twice) and I can state that pain does not come into it at all and any vet that does not know this has obviously never practiced, nor consulted with one that has. On two occasions I have asked the vet why the horse does not feel pain when it's leg is clearly snapped through, and we have discussed this phenomenon at length.

Same point I was making.

The charges of cruelty bought against the attendant by the RSPCA and backed up by this vet had nothing to do with jumps racing.

If it was to do with the racing then the jockey and the trainer that would have been charged not the attendant. The attendant was simply carrying out the actions that he felt most advisable at the time and any discussion with him, and other veterinarians would have shown that the action was what most of them would recommend.

The decision by the RSPCA to use the charges against this man to "highlight their cause" were horrid in my opinion.

RAB
06-04-12, 08:15 AM
It does sound that there is a problem with racing and the safety procedures. Accidents happen the danger of horses galloping past a accident scene is unacceptable.
Whether it is racing, jumping or pony club event accidents, falls, happen. If it was a rider or horse on the ground..... Injured or just dazed there should be means to prevent catastrophe - to continue the race in the situation described is imo negligent.
... If oc are deemed negligent - no insurance!!

Belltrees
19-04-12, 10:54 AM
Jamps racing fatalities per 1000 starter in the UK (with much higher fences than here)

Chases 24.7
Hurdle races 19.45
National Hunt Flat 8.46
Flat 3.97

From: Williams et al, Racehorse injuries, clinical problems and fatalities recorded on British racecourses from flat racing and National Hunt
racing during 1996, 1997 and 1998, Equine vet. J. (2001) 33 (5) 478-486

In Victoria per 1000 starters
Jumps 8.9
Flat 0.44

Between 1989 and 2004 the risk of fatality per starter in jumps racing remained constant. In flat racing during this period it increased. This data does not include results of SA races which also experienced fatalities during this period.

From; Boden et al, Risk of fatality and causes of death of Thoroughbred horses associated with racing in Victoria, Australia: 19892004, Equine vet. J. (2006) 38 (4) 312-318

This study found that number of fatalities varied from year to year but that risk of fatality remained constant throughout the study period. The study also found no signigicant reduction or increase in the rate of fatalities following the implementation of jump design changes or reductions in field sizes as recommended by Racing Victoria's review of jumps racing in 1994.

Risk of fatal injury on course or in the 24 hours immediately post racing are:

Whip use while progressing, especially on take off before a fence
Length and stage of race (more falls in the final stages and the longer the race)
Number of starts (novices fall more than experienced horses)
Total number of flat and jumps starts (increase in total race distances travelled increased the risk of fatalitiy)
Starts prior- a start in the 14 days prior to the race was correlated with increased risk of fatality
Surface- more falls with harder surfaces
Number of starters-More starters more falls
Longer flat racing career prior to starting jums racing

Causes of falls-
Misjudged takeoff
Hitting fence
Colliding with another horse before take off and on landing
Sudden death-heart failure

Injuries sustained
Factures: shoulders, distal limbs, proximal limbs, pelvis, cervical verterbrae, lumbar vertebrae, cranium
Rupture: deep and superficial tendons, ruptured suspensory ligaments
Heart failure
Head injury (collision with ground leading to brain injury)

Data abstracted from the above studies and:
Pinchbeck et al, Whip use and race progress are associated with horse falls
in hurdle and steeplechase racing in the UK, Equine vet. J. (2004) 36 (5) 384-389

Seems an odd kind of 'sport' in which non consenting 'athletes' (they don't get asked if they want to take part) are subjected to such a high risk of fatality or severe injury. At least the jockeys know the risks when they choose to take part.

Linon
19-04-12, 11:45 AM
What I am surprised by is that the British casualties are so high relative to Victoria- especially the flat figures (3.97 vs 0.44).

However, in that data there is some information about how to improve thing in jumps racing:
1. Fewer horses in the race;
2. Horses not to be raced in the two weeks prior to starting;
3. Shorten the distance of the race;
4. Determine a limit on how many races a horse can do in their racing lifetime to help prevent catastrophic injury;
5. Softer surfaces, or a hardness rating of surfaces;
6. Have a limit on the amount of flat racing a horse can do before starting in jumps racing. This would also have the effect of people training horses for jumps racing earlier and perhaps increasing the skills base of the horse before it starts jumps racing.

What surprises me most though, is that given the casualities at the Grand National, and in British racing etc in general, that there is not a real hue and cry.

It also shows (given the recent NY Times investigations of racing in the US) that horses are best off if they race in Australia (and I would imagine, NZ).

I do expect though, that the nutter end of animal rights will gain the upper hand, and eventually all horse sport will be severely limited or stopped entirely.

... Taff
19-04-12, 12:02 PM
Sorry, not read much of thread yet, but I just want to mention that I heard recently of some man being given a years gaol sentence for cruelty to horses when they suffocated in an enclosed vehicle while he was attempting to relocate them. He owned the horses.

I personally think that because this man did not do this intentionally and they were his own horses, he should not have been given a gaol sentence.

The bit I've read about the incident concerning the man about which this thread is about (sentence structure?) well, it seems to me that this man has been used as a scape goat. Not right. It was easier to attack him than the big guns. Poor form.

teetee
19-04-12, 12:09 PM
Linon those are very sensible recommendations it's a shame that they probably won't be taken up, the question has never been 'could jumps racing be made safer?' we all know it could, the question is 'will jumps racing be made safer?'.

If the extreme animal rights gains the upper hand it will be because they have superior skills in convincing the general public to put political pressure on the powers that be, that has always been the case. If that happens it will be because equine industries have sat back and let it happen, and failed to be proactive in both improving safety and welfare of the animals and in improving their own PR, some people would much rather scoff at the criticism instead of taking it seriously and addressing it effectively.

Other industries have had animal rights come after them and how do they tackle it? By being proactive. Do you think the head honchos at KFC give a stuff about chicken welfare? No but they are being proactive here because they have copped it from PETA in the US. McDonalds is the same, they know that the general public holds the power and they know they have to convince them that they do give a stuff about animal welfare. The key is to be proactive and be seen to be doing so, that's why all the diversion and crap that people do is so utterly ridiculous and goes nowhere.

Bats_79
19-04-12, 12:46 PM
Sorry, not read much of thread yet, but I just want to mention that I heard recently of some man being given a years gaol sentence for cruelty to horses when they suffocated in an enclosed vehicle while he was attempting to relocate them. He owned the horses.

I personally think that because this man did not do this intentionally and they were his own horses, he should not have been given a gaol sentence.



I agree with you there Taff.. But I think part of the sentence with the ponies might have been due to the dumping. If he'd gone "Oh my God what have I done" and called a vet he could have got off with a warning. But dumping the bodies? Very much not right.

Has the case been appealed yet?