RIP, December Second: Horse Racing Returns With Tragedy
After taking a two-month break from forcing animals to race amidst the COVID-19 outbreak, the horse-racing industry is now back to business as usual – and just a couple of days after races resumed, the horse death toll is on the up again.
For the first time in recent memory, April and May saw no injuries or deaths on UK racecourses, simply because no horses were forced to race. Now, the cruel spectacle has returned with an all-too-familiar pattern: December Second died after sustaining a fatal injury at Newcastle Racecourse.
December Second died today in a race to please humans. pic.twitter.com/8Eqe0oQUhj
— tom hudson (@Mr_Kool_Kat) June 1, 2020
How Horses Suffer in Racing
Horses bred for greed and speed are pushed beyond their natural abilities and forced to run at breakneck pace. Those who don’t sustain horrific injuries when they crash face-first onto the track may suffer heart attacks, bleed from their lungs, or develop painful ulcers and other health problems that come only from being pushed to the breaking point for human amusement.
Around 200 horses die on British racecourses every year.
Drugs – both legal and illegal – have been administered by trainers and even veterinarians to mask pain so that horses who should be recuperating instead run with injuries, exacerbating them.
A Survivor’s ‘Life’ After Racing
Even those who make it off the track alive often don’t live happily ever after. Every year, thousands of horses – including spent Thoroughbreds and those who don’t “make the grade” – are discarded like used betting slips.
They’re abandoned, neglected, or sold for slaughter, their flesh ending up either in dog or cat food or as “prime cuts” for human consumption in Europe and Asia.
What You Can Do
It’s time this cruel industry was permanently put out to pasture – that includes every race these gentle animals are forced to partake in. Here’s what you can do to make it happen:
- Never ever attend a horse race.
- Don’t support this deadly industry by betting on horses. If you enjoy a flutter, put your money on a football match, a Formula 1 race, or any other sport in which the participants are willing athletes, not mistreated animals.
- Join PETA’s Action Team to stay up to date on our campaigns and take online and offline actions to help horses and other animals: