updated: Aug 11, 2017 11:39 EDT
JEFFERSON COUNTY, Ala.,
August 11, 2017 (Newswire.com) –
Horse racing has evolved into a very popular and profitable performance sport in America. Research studies indicate that thousands of thoroughbreds are reared for this sports that are notorious for high-end betting to the tune of a hundred billion dollars across over 50 countries worldwide. Only about 5 percent to 10 percent of the horses bred for this purpose ever really make to out to the racecourse. The rest are usually put down in slaughterhouses. However, what many people do not realize is that those of them who do indeed make it as a race horse don’t really win the lottery.
Racehorses suffer excruciating pain from injuries sustained as a result of intense training and competition, with a huge percentage of them even succumbing to death shortly thereafter. The moment a race horse suffers an injury, it usually never recovers enough to compete professionally. This is the reason why a lot of these beautiful animals are put down once they sustain injuries. Recent estimates suggest that over 14,000 injured racehorses are euthanized each year. Successful entrepreneur-turned-activist Teresa Tate Callen has been fighting for years against what she and many others believe is outright animal cruelty. After realizing that the pleas were falling on deaf ears, Teresa Tate Callen opened a horse shelter called Neighborhood Love to treat and rehabilitate injured racehorses in order to prevent them from being killed.
Callen says, “Thousands of us have been protesting this inhuman treatment and abuse of race horses for a long time, but no governmental regulatory body has done anything about it. I had my moment of realization when I understood that nothing would change considering the sheer amount of money involved in this industry. So I decided to take in and shelter these amazing horses who suffer because of nothing else but human greed. It’s such typical human behavior, once you’ve milked something for all its worth, you just let it to rot. What’s worse is that they don’t even let the horse ‘rot,’ they actually go and kill them off. A lot of times it’s because they’re frustrated about losing a lot of money since their horse can no longer race, as well as having to re-invest time and money into a new horse.”
“Both the industry and the breeders don’t care at all about the welfare of their horses. Is horse racing really worth it as a form of entertainment for us as a society when thousands of horses are killed every year because of it? This doesn’t even include the excessive use of force and violence through horrible actions like whipping and shocking that puts these tired horses through so much suffering. Do you want to hear the worst? The trainers regularly pump the horses with all sorts of unhealthy drugs, hormones, steroids, and painkillers hoping that it will increase their performance. I’ve fought so hard to convince some racehorse owners to give their injured horses to me instead of putting them to sleep, and I’m proud to say that I have saved 13 horses till date that are currently under my supervision,” she adds.
Racehorse injuries most commonly affect four systems: Musculoskeletal, Respiratory, Integumentary and Cardiovascular. Horses carry a lot of body weight on their relatively slender legs, so any type of leg injury such as a compound fracture can take forever to heal as well as a lot of money. Teresa Tate Callen strongly believes that this should not be used as an excuse for neglecting proper care and treatment. “Just because it’s time and money consuming doesn’t mean it’s all right to put them down. Would you do that to your own human family member? If someone came to me tomorrow and said, ‘Hey Teresa, your grandma’s injured but she can definitely survive and be healthy and happy again, but it’ll take a few years and a lot of money. Do you think anyone would say no, it’s too much, let’s put her down? Who are we to decide the worth of someone’s life?”
With a lot of high profile racehorses sustaining fatal injuries of late, a lot of people empathize with Callen’s struggle. “I’ve gotten tremendous help from generous vets who have provided very cheap medical treatment for these injured horses. I’ve also successfully tied up with leading horse behaviorists, farriers, nutritionists, chiropractors and even dentists to ensure a proper rehab. A lot of them were very kind and offered their services for free. The rest of the cost has been paid for by a combination of crowdfunding and money from my own pocket. It’s worth it though, and luckily I have enough savings to care for these beautiful horses.”
Callen’s efforts have been appreciated by many after her social media posts about horse rescues went viral. Wade Nodine, a college student studying veterinary medicine was so moved by Callen’s work that she decided to devote her entire summer to help her with the rescue horses. “I just had to meet her and help her when I saw those stories on social media. It’s been a rewarding experience for me, but more importantly, the horses are recuperating well from their injuries with the care and treatment they receive. My time with them has taught me to never give up faith and belief. Teresa Callen is my hero!” The lavish praise bestowed on Callen only goes to show the huge impact she is making in this world. It should inspire others to put themselves out there and fight for the causes are passionate about in order to make this world a better place.
Source: Teresa Tate Callen