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Do you think that when Private Vow was being forced into the slaughterhouse, he was just as scared as the other horses PETA documented trembling in fear before they were killed in South Korea? We wonder if he remembered the humans he met during his racing career, like his trainer for the 2006 Kentucky Derby, Steve Asmussen; jockeys Mike Smith, Jerry Bailey, John Velazquez, and Shaun Bridgmohan; or owner Mike McCarty. We wonder if any of those people thought about Private Vow, the money that he had won for them, or how they and the entire racing industry had let him down. Did they even know that after his racing career, Private Vow was used for breeding in the U.S. and South Korea and sired 196 foals? And did they know that when he was no longer profitable as a breeding stallion in South Korea, he was sent to slaughter so that his flesh could be eaten by humans and dogs or rendered into beauty products?
Private Vow in South Korea
The discovery of Private Vow’s killing comes after PETA’s investigation into the largest horse slaughterhouse in South Korea, which led the Korea Racing Authority (KRA) to agree to work toward implementing a retirement program for racehorses. While the KRA has taken some token steps, it still subsidizes the slaughter industry and has failed to curtail the number of ex-racehorses sent to slaughterhouses.
After learning of the slaughter of Private Vow and the cruelty that PETA documented in the South Korean horse slaughterhouse, The Stronach Group, a global race industry leader, is now joining PETA in urging all North American auction companies, breeders, and owners to develop policies that prohibit the sale of Thoroughbred racehorses and broodmares to South Korea without meaningful and binding assurances that these animals will be protected.
Auction companies Keeneland, Fasig-Tipton, and Ocala Breeders’ Sales Company are in a unique position to do the right thing and protect horses from slaughter. By adopting a policy banning sales to South Korea, they would send a strong message to the KRA.
Horses are intelligent and have even shown that they can understand symbols and use them to make requests. They deserve better than a terrifying trip to the slaughterhouse.
We need your help to make sure that these companies hear the message loud and clear—please sign the petition below to speak up for horses like Private Vow.