2014 eNews

The Alberta Stables Initiative (ASI) announces the conversion from an initiative to an official association for stables. The association of stables will address the many economic and demographic challenges that stable operators face in Alberta. This transformation has been in the long-term plans for the initiative since its inception. The newly formed association will continue to deliver programs and build on successes the ASI achieved over the past five years.  


Thanks to Alberta Veterinary Labs for sponsoring this eNews.



By Ron Clarkeback text2ps

Horses, like people, are living longer. Aging in horses brings with it the same range of inadequacies experienced by any species growing old. While evidence suggests that only about 10 per cent of horses are presently beyond 20 years of age, increasing numbers live into the 30’s. Thanks to improving veterinary care, the geriatric equine can live a comfortable and humane life beyond “normal” retirement, and the dreaded period when end-of-life decisions are called for.

Defining “old” for horses varies greatly by breed and history of use. Pony breeds tend to live longer and often remain useable up to 30. Larger breeds tend to show age earlier. The sway back, drooping lower lip, dull coat, gradual loss of body condition, grey hair, joint stiffness, hoof deformities and inevitable and uneven dental wear are sure signs of advancing age.

Key areas need to be addressed in the quest to keep horses growing old while remaining active and comfortable.


Canadian breed associations should be aware some individuals within Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada are proposing repealing the Animal Pedigree Act. Please read the attached letter from Ronald Black, General Manager of the Canadian Livestock Records Corporation. He explains the importance of the act and how a repeal would negatively affect Canadian breeds.

Read the letter here.

On January 29, Bill C-322 was ammended with the following exception:
"That exception is that if the horses or other equines are raised primarily for human consumption and if the horse is accompanied by a medical record that contains its standardized description and a complete lifetime record in chronological order of medical treatment then this meat would then be acceptable."

This is now Bill C-571.

Read the full text of Bill C-571 here.

This bill is still anti-slaughter and will have detrimental effects on horses and the horse industry. When horse processing was effectively banned in the United States, horse welfare was compromised. The "unwanted horse" endures neglect, abandonment, and prolonged suffering. The kind of legislation introduced in Bill C-571 will lead to an increase in unacceptable horse welfare issues. 

Please contact your MP to educate them about the negative effects this bill will have on the welfare of our horses and the horse industry in Canada.  


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