Penn Valley Horse Auction, Centre Hall, PA 3/28/14

Friday, March 28, 2014 - 10:15
Investigation Category: 

Animals’ Angels investigators attended the monthly horse sale in Centre Hall. The tack auction started at noon, the horse sale started at 1:37pm.  Work horses were sold first, followed by ponies, riding and driving horses. The parking lot was crowded with large stock trailers, but no tractor/trailers were observed.

Approx. 500 horses were for sale, but only 216 of them were listed in the sale catalog.  The inside barn was very crowded and the horses were standing in tight rows. Several were very agitated, some kicking and biting was observed. Two horses with tag numbers 300 and 301 were moved into the “suspect” pen, they were holding their heads low and appeared sick. 

Investigators noted that some horses were moved outside and behind the building by auction workers. They followed and found that all kill buyer “prospects” were kept in that area. A Percheron was observed with a severely swollen hind leg, several others had bad hooves and were limping. A very agitated stud was tied in between a group of mules and thin Standardbreds, he continuously kicked the horses closest to him in the side. While the majority of the horses inside had access to hay, these horses did not have any hay or water.

The working horse sale started at 1:37pm. Kill buyer Bruce Rotz, a buyer for kill buyer Brian Moore and horse trader Fisher were in attendance. Rotz was buying under #12, bidding as much as 500$ for well-fed horses.  

Horse #272, a 9 year old Belgian mare, displayed an Equine Transfer brand and number, indicating that she might have been used as a carrier mare in Florida’s controversial embryo transfer farms. Afterwards, a grey mare was moved through the auction ring. She was limping and appeared to be sick. The mare and several other horses sold for as little as $20. Bruce Rotz bought the black Percheron with the swollen hind leg. The sale continued all afternoon and both kill buyers obtained enough horses to fill their trailers. Animals’ Angels will continue to monitor this sale.