Smiths Grove Horse Auction, KY 5/12/12

Friday, June 1, 2012 - 10:15
Investigation Category: 

Investigators arrived at sale at 4:00 pm. The trailer of slaughter buyer R & R livestock was already backed up to the loading dock. There were approx. 150-220 horses at the auction, including mules, burros, and foals. Several pens were overcrowded and a lot of biting and kicking was observed. Investigators noted a stallion in one of the larger pens. He was breeding several of the mares and fighting with others. No food or water was provided for the majority of the horses in the barn. There was a round bale of hay in the back pens were the slaughter horses were held, but water containers were dry. Some horses were observed licking rain water that was running out of the gutters. The overall condition of the horses in the “kill” pens was very poor. Lacerations, leg injuries, bites and bleeding wounds were found. Many of them were emaciated with over grown hooves, some showed symptoms of parasites and viruses. A chestnut horse showed signs of colic and remained down for several hours. A paint horse appeared to have a mouth injury which made it impossible for him to close his mouth and was causing him to drool excessively. The horse sale started at 5:45 pm and the atmosphere in the sale ring was chaotic. There were sometimes as many as 12 people on the sale ring floor, which made the horses very nervous and created a safety hazard. Some horses were no-saled, others sold for as low as $20.00. After most of the public had left, R & R livestock loaded approximately 30 horses and an unknown blue freightliner with Indiana plates loaded approx. 20 horses. Investigators left at 11:45pm. Animals’ Angels is very concerned about the conditions at this auction and will continue to monitor it.