Posted: 2/26/2009

Horse Slaughter back in the news


URGENT AWI eAlert: Illinois Horse Slaughter Advocate Trying to Overturn Ban - Again


February 26, 2009


Dear Humanitarian:

The Illinois General Assembly may soon consider H.B. 583, a bill designed to overturn the state's ban on horse slaughter. The ban, which went into effect in 2007, closed the country's last remaining horse slaughter plant - Cavel International (based in DeKalb, IL) - which was foreign-owned, marking the end to an utterly cruel practice that the majority of Americans oppose.

The sponsor of the pro-slaughter bill, Representative Jim Sacia, has a long history of fighting to keep horse slaughter alive despite strong opposition from the majority of Illinois residents and the American public.  Rep. Sacia is out of step with public opinion and his effort is in vain; having sat empty for almost two years the former Cavel plant recently opened to slaughter non-equine species. Further, the U.S. Congress is currently considering the Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act, which is anticipated to move quickly, and will prohibit the slaughter of horses here as well as their export for slaughter abroad.

Now Rep. Sacia is telling media outlets that support is growing and implying it is the humane community.  Rep. Sacia is profoundly mistaken and clearly misleading the public and his colleagues in the General Assembly, opposition is as strong as ever.  It is a shame that he is resorting to these tactics in order to pass legislation overturning a law that was soundly supported by the State of Illinois only two years ago.

What You Can Do

If you are from Illinois please click here for a link and call each member of the House and politely ask them to oppose H.B. 583. Remind them that:

  • You strongly oppose H.B. 583 because horse slaughter is a cruel and unnecessary practice.
  • The Illinois General Assembly banned horse slaughter by an overwhelming majority in 2007, and urge them to reject Representative Sacia's bill, H.B. 583.
  • There is no evidence to support Rep. Sacia's claims that Cavel's closure has led to an increase in horse abandonment.
  • Ending horse slaughter stopped an overt form of animal cruelty and has only been good for the horses. The state ban is important.
  • Rep. Sacia complained that closing Cavel would put local workers out of business despite the cruelty of the industry.  The building that formerly housed Cavel has recently re-opened to slaughter non-equine species, thus bring jobs and income to the local economy.  His argument is even more irrelevant given this development.
  • The humane community and the majority if Illinois residents DO NOT support the overturning of this ban no matter what Rep. Sacia may claim, including the inclusion of a $25 fee for each horse slaughtered.

Please also let them know that you support passage of the federal Prevention of Equine Cruelty Act, which is expected to move quickly this Congress. The bill will prohibit the slaughter of American horses throughout the United States as well as their export abroad for the same purpose.

Thank you for your support and commitment to equine welfare.  We cannot allow those who which to defend animal abuse continue to mislead legislators and the American public.

Be Sure to share this eAlert with friends, family and coworkers and encourage them to call as many Representatives as possible.  Continue to check back at for updates.


Chris Heyde
Deputy Director
Government and Legal Affairs
Animal Welfare Institute




Livestock is for human consumption and gets slaughtered. Horses, like cats and dogs are companion animals. YOU DON"T EAT THEM and you treat them with respect and provide for their well being.

The problem we have is that noboby wants to live up to their responsibilities anymore. It has become a very disposable society. Everybody wants to make a quick buck, for a few pennies per pound instead of paying a veterinarian to humanely euthanize their horse and dispose of them proper. It doesn't end there.Cal arriving at HAHS

We know. We investigate the abuse and neglect of the hooved animals.

The irresponsibility of human kind towards animals is sickening.


The Staff of the
Hooved Animal Humane Society
Woodstock, IL