🎉 In honor of Equine Advocates’ 25th Birthday on Saturday, February 27, we’re counting down 25 of our biggest accomplishments! Each day this week, we will share FIVE major milestones Equine Advocates has conquered since the rescue was founded in 1996. 🎉
6. Court Case Victory Saved Eleven American Saddlebreds (1999): Eleven horses, including two stallions and four pregnant mares were embroiled in a bankruptcy case where they were all in danger of going to a breeder/trainer who used inhumane methods in the training of Saddlebreds for the show ring. Equine Advocates outbid that person and placed all of the horses in kind homes. Millie, one of our mares at the sanctuary, is the offspring of one of those rescued Saddlebreds. She was born in 2000 and came here after the sanctuary had been established.
7. Equine Advocates “Shut the Killers Out” at Local Meat Auction in Western PA (1999): This was the first of numerous trips to Pennsylvania and Ohio slaughter auctions over the years to outbid killer buyers for mostly old and/or injured Draft Horses, Mules and Standardbreds used for work and transportation by Amish and Mennonite farmers. That day Equine Advocates saved 13 of the 23 horses up for auction.
8. PMU Rescue Operation in Canada Results in Saved Lives and a Cover Story (2000): This was the first time Equine Advocates traveled to Manitoba to rescue PMU Mares and Foals from slaughter. Twelve were purchased and saved at the Winnipeg Slaughter Auction. Much publicity was generated about the rescue. Animals Agenda Magazine published a cover story about it entitled, “Pissing Their Lives Away,” which alludes to the pregnant mares urine (PMU) that is harvested by Big Pharma to produce ERT and HRT drugs which is no longer necessary. Today most medications prescribed to treat the symptoms of menopause can be produced safely in a lab and do not involve the use and abuse of horses. Maxine, one of our most beloved equines, was one of the PMU Mares rescued that day.
9. Equine Advocates Goes Undercover with the Pittsburgh Channel (WTAE TV) to Expose Thoroughbreds Going From the Track to Slaughter (2001): “The Meat Man” gave cash for Thoroughbreds that were not fast enough to win at Mountaineer Park and regularly took them to the auction in Sugar Creek, Ohio, to sell them for slaughter. Equine Advocates saved three Thoroughbreds at Sugar Creek who had just raced and then were dumped there as their stories were televised and this practice exposed on the evening news.
10. First Annual Awards Dinner & Charity Auction (2002): This annual event in Saratoga became the organization’s biggest fund-raiser of the year and continued for 18 consecutive years through 2019 until the COVID-19 pandemic hit. The very first honorees were Herb and Ellen Moelis, co-founders (along with the late Allaire du Pont) of the Thoroughbred Charities of America. Bebe Neuwirth, Bo Derek , Cornelia Guest, and the late John Hettinger were among many of the individuals honored for their work to end horse slaughter and protect horses from abuse.