Author Topic: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?  (Read 13264 times)

FatBloke

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Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« on: April 14, 2012, 05:57:17 pm »
Personally I think it's run its course and now is the time to call a halt to this annual slaughter of innocent horses.
They tried to make it safer after last year's bloodbath and have failed spectacularly.
Please stop it now!
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andygates

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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2012, 06:02:57 pm »
The annual post.  Only two went off to the glue factory this year, isn't that a pretty good number?
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AndyK

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2012, 06:07:28 pm »
It isn't just the Grand National where horses are slaughtered in the name of 'sport' and the bookies' greed. It happens all year round. It's time to call a halt to all 'sports' that involve inflicting suffering on animals. Horse racing would be a good start as it's only about gambling and greed.

Personally I think if a horse has to be 'destroyed' during a race, then so should the jockey and the owner.

Jaded

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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2012, 06:17:25 pm »
Horses die all the time.
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rower40

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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2012, 06:23:00 pm »
Greyhound racing has a motorised rabbit, wot with dogs being carnivores 'n all.

Perhaps horse racing should have a motorised tiger?
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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2012, 06:26:39 pm »
Horses die all the time.

Jaded, this is true but this hardly represents natural causes.  There will be those who say that if it wasn't for horse racing most horses would be sent to the knacker's yard.  I don't think that's necessarily true (it didn't happen to foxhounds when the hunting ban brought the whole world to an end).  In any case, that's where most of these poor horses end up anyway, long before their natural life-span is up.  It is not beyond the wit of humankind to gradually breed fewer horses.  It's not quite the same as the annual TT carnage.  Hporses don't have much choice.

(sorry about today's FG result - all the drugs were at Aintree!)

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #6 on: April 14, 2012, 06:35:40 pm »
I've always enjoyed the spectacle of the National, but I'm starting to wonder if it's worth it. I guess it would be interesting to know how many horses die annually over all races - are we just more aware of the National because it's the race lots of people have their only bet on.

I think the major part of the guilt I feel about it is that I suspect part of the excitement is the feeling of danger, the unspoken desire to see a big pile up (just as we enjoy motor racing and airshows partly because of the danger).
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Biggsy

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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #7 on: April 14, 2012, 06:50:47 pm »
Something's wrong when it's not a surprise that horses die in an event.
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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #8 on: April 14, 2012, 07:11:03 pm »
I've always enjoyed the spectacle of the National, but I'm starting to wonder if it's worth it. I guess it would be interesting to know how many horses die annually over all races - are we just more aware of the National because it's the race lots of people have their only bet on.

I think the major part of the guilt I feel about it is that I suspect part of the excitement is the feeling of danger, the unspoken desire to see a big pile up (just as we enjoy motor racing and airshows partly because of the danger).

Animal Aid have been monitoring horses raced to death for a few years now:

http://www.horsedeathwatch.com/
The lights were red, his brain was small - he hardly felt a thing at all.

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #9 on: April 14, 2012, 07:15:08 pm »
Bloody Hell, Nik, I knew it was bad but not that bad.  That's just barbarism.  I'm not surprised it's hushed up.  Someone will be along in a minute to say it's not bad as a percentage of the horses involved, I expect.

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #10 on: April 14, 2012, 07:21:06 pm »
I grew up in the horse racing industry, in Western Australia. They only do flat racing out there and deaths are extremely, extremely rare.

It's jump racing like the Grand National that's really risky to both horse and rider. Big fields are one of the main causes.
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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #11 on: April 14, 2012, 07:25:24 pm »
Why is it necessary to put them down because they broke a leg? 

PaulF

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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #12 on: April 14, 2012, 07:30:54 pm »
Bloody Hell, Nik, I knew it was bad but not that bad.  That's just barbarism.  I'm not surprised it's hushed up.  Someone will be along in a minute to say it's not bad as a percentage of the horses involved, I expect.

I'm with you. Until I saw that I didn't realise the scale of of it!!

Does anyone one know if horses can recover from a broken leg in the same way that we can.  A piece of received wisdom that I "know for a fact" is that equine physiology is different and their bones don't mend like humans do. Is that a fact or is it simply that, like ours, they don't mend perfectly and may not be as good as a steed post recovery?

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #13 on: April 14, 2012, 07:31:26 pm »
I grew up in the horse racing industry, in Western Australia. They only do flat racing out there and deaths are extremely, extremely rare.

It's jump racing like the Grand National that's really risky to both horse and rider. Big fields are one of the main causes.

That seems better, mrcharly, though I'm not enamoured of horse-racing as an industry , while I know they like to run and even race each other.  But what about when they're pensioned off?  What's the score then, in your experience?

AndyK

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #14 on: April 14, 2012, 07:32:58 pm »
Bloody Hell, Nik, I knew it was bad but not that bad.  That's just barbarism.  I'm not surprised it's hushed up.  Someone will be along in a minute to say it's not bad as a percentage of the horses involved, I expect.

I'm with you. Until I saw that I didn't realise the scale of of it!!

Does anyone one know if horses can recover from a broken leg in the same way that we can.  A piece of received wisdom that I "know for a fact" is that equine physiology is different and their bones don't mend like humans do. Is that a fact or is it simply that, like ours, they don't mend perfectly and may not be as good as a steed post recovery?

According to the trainers the reason horses are 'destroyed' if they break a leg is because they cannot be immobilised while the bone knits. Apparently putting the horse in a body sling will cause pneumonia.

Hence Clare Balding's crass 'So it's kinder to put them out of their suffering…' comment after today's debacle. No, Love, it's kinder not to inflict the suffering on the horses in the first place.

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #15 on: April 14, 2012, 07:36:13 pm »
Too expensive to treat and the stabling fees are high, too high if your horse is unables to race. Many thoroughbred (sp?) horses were abandonned in Ireland after the economic crash

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #16 on: April 14, 2012, 07:37:03 pm »
I guess if it could choose when and where it exercised it might be less likely to break a leg?

PaulF

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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #17 on: April 14, 2012, 07:38:50 pm »
That's what I thought, at the end of the day they're a business , not a pet :(. Not sure it's a civilised way to behave.

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #18 on: April 14, 2012, 07:42:56 pm »
They don't just break legs because of the fences.  They're bred for speed and have much more spindly legs than any normal horse.

I suppose at least if you're a horse you have the possibility of surviving and being put out to grass.  Few greyhounds are that lucky, because they aren't the sort of dog many people want as pets and the trainers certainly don't want to keep them.
And Darkness and Decay and the Coronavirus held illimitable dominion over all.

LEE

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #19 on: April 14, 2012, 07:49:50 pm »
News just breaking......"Animals killed by humans for profit shocker"

Jaded

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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #20 on: April 14, 2012, 07:57:29 pm »
<tucks into a nice steak>
If you don't like your democracy, vote against it.

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #21 on: April 14, 2012, 08:03:05 pm »
Horses can't like down to sleep and suspending them in slings is dubious.

I've just watched the replay; that race had double a sensible field. Absolutely ridiculous.

As for presenting off ; ex jump houses are often used for show jumping and general hacking
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Rhys W

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Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #22 on: April 14, 2012, 08:09:42 pm »
I think if a horse gets shot then they should also shoot the rich, fat-faced, overcoated owner.

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #23 on: April 14, 2012, 08:14:36 pm »
There's a pretty good primer here:

http://animals.howstuffworks.com/mammals/broken-leg-horse.htm

It seems that no horse has a good chance of recovery from a broken leg unless it's very young and it's a hairline fracture.
And Darkness and Decay and the Coronavirus held illimitable dominion over all.

Re: Time to call a halt to the Grand National?
« Reply #24 on: April 14, 2012, 08:14:44 pm »
Point of order, please.

Not all horse owners are rich capitalist pigs.

The issue here (IMO) is the desperation of the racing industry to pull in the crowds. That seems to require bigger and better spectacles; a Grand National field of, say, 10, top-class horses would be a good race, but would look 'boring' to the average punter. They like the idea of a plucky 'underdog' horse winning; such things happen when the top runners are knocked, tripped or ridden down by a mass of lesser jumpers.

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