The Roach Backed Clyde - A Win for the Horse - A Win for the Broker and A Win for AC4H

Remember the emaciated Clyde with the severe back problem being marketed by AC4H?  A horse that could not have shipped to slaughter in the shape he was in, but AC4H still managed to get $500 for him?  This is a horse that had been bought for $50 at the Middleburg auction.  Moore and Sheidy got a really nice mark up on a horse that clearly needed physical help desperately. 

Well, the good news is that he was taken in by a Pig Sanctuary and is doing well.  Tuesday he was taken to New Bolton and this is the update that was posted afterwards:

Chief went to New Bolton! Cindy from his QT barn did a wonderful job taking photos and telling the story of his adventure! Overall great news and report from the specialists! He still has a touch of pneumonia that we need to clear up, had his horrible feet trimmed, and is severely emaciated, but ALL things we can fix! He is alert, happy and pain-free! He needs to go back in two weeks or so for one more hoof trim & follow-up bloodwork with the specialist and then hopefully by mid-May, he'll be on his way home to PIGS! Thank you to everyone who has rooted for him & helped us help him! [pics were here, which this blog elected not to include]  Tom leads him to the trailer, he still has nasal discharged, but no where near what he had when he first arrived with a fever of 104.5 !
During the original evaluation process, he was clearly in major discomfort.   AC4H had him ridden and briefly posted the picture. It was very painful to watch. They quickly realized their mistake and took the picture down, although I bet there’s a screen shot of it out there somewhere.
He arrived at the QT barn with a temperature of 104.5.  That didn’t happen between the time he left Moore’s lot, was transported to pick-up and arrived at the QT barn.  Neither did the severe emaciation, pneumonia, elf-shoe hooves or the roach back (roach back - as diagnosed by two different vets the sanctuary has had check him).
The PA Anti-cruelty law clearly states that withholding vet care is an offense, as well as selling or offering for sale a disabled horse:
§ 5511. Cruelty to animals

(c) Cruelty to animals.--A person commits a summary offense if he wantonly or cruelly ill treats, overloads, beats, otherwise abuses any animal, or neglects any animal as to which he has a duty of care, whether belonging to himself or otherwise, or abandons any animal, or deprives any animal of necessary sustenance, drink, shelter or veterinary care, or access to clean and sanitary shelter which will protect the animal against inclement weather and preserve the animal's body heat and keep it dry. This subsection shall not apply to activity undertaken in normal agricultural operation.
(d) Selling or using disabled horse.--A person commits a summary offense if he offers for sale or sells any horse, which by reason of debility, disease or lameness, or for other cause, could not be worked or used without violating the laws against cruelty to animals, or leads, rides, drives or transports any such horse for any purpose, except that of conveying the horse to the nearest available appropriate facility for its humane keeping or destruction or for medical or surgical treatment. 

Ironically enough, AC4H has the statutes posted on their website.  


All that being said, why do the authorities continue to turn a blind eye to these animals in need?  Why do Moore and AC4H keep getting a free pass?  And it’s not just them, we can easily show (and have) other sick/injured/debilitated horses that these placement programs are selling for the kill buyers.  It happens regularly and not just with the Jonestown/Bernville connection.

I’m happy this Clyde – now named Chief – is being cared for and has a good prognosis.  Bless his heart and may he live to be a happy old boy.  And thank you so much to the rescue that is making it happen for him.

But you have to keep in the back of your mind that this horse should have been given vet care way before he was.  Someone owned him and sold him at Middleburg auction.  He absolutely should have been no-saled.  Moore bought him and withheld vet care.  A “rescue” markets him and sells him for $450 over what he sold for in Middleburg.  And the real kicker is that he could NOT have been shipped to slaughter in this condition.

The never ending free passes for these offenses simply encourage more of it to happen.  And once again, the activity results in a cash payoff for both broker and “rescue.”

And this again reinforces the fact that these kill buyers are buying horses they know cannot be sold for slaughter because they have marketers who will say “they are kill buyer owned” and naïve people will donate money to bail them.  Kind but naïve hearts have created a whole new market and revenue stream for these unscrupulous brokers and their affiliated “programs.”

I’m sure those who support these offenders will shout all that matters is that the horse was saved!

Is it really fine with you that he suffered for a length of time and that numerous people ignored his suffering until sufficient profit was wrung out of him?  It is really okay that the wool is being pulled over so many eyes?


Brazen Washington State Feedlot Program Feels No Shame

Being a predominately east coast group, we don’t often think about what is happening on the west coast.  That’s particularly true because there is so much mayhem taking place over here.  This article is over a year old, but boy there are some telling facts here.  

The horses are at a Zillah-based feedlot owned by Chuck Walker.  Here’s an all too familiar story that is part of the article:

Rebels Equine Feedlot Sales (REFS), an organization that works with Walker’s Gary Seals Livestock, routinely sends out email alerts to animal adoption websites and Craigslist featuring photos and descriptions of healthy, highly adoptable horses at the feedlot, with a plea for intervention to prevent their imminent slaughter. Samantha Milbredt’s phone number and the website url for REFS are listed as the contacts for people interested in rescuing the horses. REFS states on their website that the animals they list for rescue “have been purchased by the feedlot owner for the purpose of re-sale to the Bovary Slaughterhouse in Canada,” where horse slaughter has been legal for years. It explains that Mildredt “has been given permission by the feedlot owner to assess and advertise the horses in the hope of seeing them safe in the hands of new owners.” What it doesn’t say is that the horses on the feedlot offered for “rescue” are sold to horse-loving buyers at significantly higher prices than Walker purchases them for from the kill buyers, often $600 or $700 each.

According to one horse advocacy source too frightened of retaliation to be named, who broke down in tears of despair and frustration, the healthy horses featured for sale in the photos often get sent on to slaughter because they return a higher profit for their meat. Some of the well-intentioned horse purchasers, who usually pay by cashier’s check or cash up front are presented with a different horse once they arrive to pick up the one they thought they were rescuing. Once buyers show up, they may be told that the horse they thought they were buying was kicked or hurt in some way and therefore sent to slaughter due to lameness, and they are offered another horse also “lined up for imminent slaughter.” Typically the horse they are offered turns out to be old and/or diseased and therefore not worth a good slaughterhouse price. According to our source, these horses are sometimes shot up with steroids to appear temporarily healthier and younger than they are.

Samantha Panayotopulos Milbredt is one of three people who run the website Rebels Equine Feedlot Sales (http://rebelsequinefeedlotsales.orgThere is no registered business in the State of Washington with that name. Milbredt is the registered owner of the Washington for-profit corporation Camelot Farms Inc., a boarding facility, and she is the sole proprietor of Columbia Basin Equine Rescue, also a for-profit business.

If you go on to finish reading the lengthy article, it’s very disturbing.  Here’s an article where Sam Milbredt is interviewed:

A few excerpts that nearly knocked us off our rockers:

I asked Milbredt how much money Walker makes from each sale of a horse. She calculated that he often spends $25 on a horse at auction, and the average horse will sell for $500 through Rebels. Milbredt tacks on another $100-$150 to cover the costs of her work, her phone charges involved in the transaction, her travel the 40 miles each way to the feedlot, and the hiring of a rider to test the horse. This brings the average cost to $625.

She said that it’s financially beneficial to Walker if he can sell a horse through REFS and not have to pay the cost to ship it to Canada for slaughter. She said, “There’s no doubt about it. He makes more selling it off.”

Then Milbredt returned to my original question about purchasing horses directly at auction. She said, “Absolutely. The rescue people should go directly to the auction to get horses. I think money usually brings out the worst in people. I’m just covering my expenses. There is no right or wrong way to rescue a horse. Who cares how you do it as long you’re saving horses?” She added, “Why is there a rescue Nazi who says you have to do it a certain way?”

Milbredt seemed confused by the controversy surrounding her. She said to me, “I go to church. I go to counseling. I’m a really, really good person. ”

Ah, the “Church” card.  How many times have we heard that played?

And most recently, Shedrowconfessions, an awesome blog, weighed in on the esteemed Samantha Milbredt.


Rebels Equine Feedlot Sales operates out of the Pacific Northwest and pretty much exclusively deals with kill buyer, Chuck Walker.  It is run by Sam Milbredt with the help of Helen Love and Cindy Dolowy.  Love and Dolowy would tell you they are anti-slaughter, but you know the old saying about laying down with dogs and ending up with fleas…REFS is their current operating name, but many people would probably remember them better as Columbia Basin Equine Rescue and all the scams they ran under that name.  You only need to take a quick tour around the fugly horse blog to get an idea on the types of scams Sam has run in the past.  Here’s a link to start you off (http://fuglyblog.com/2011/01/17/keep-it-up-a-whole-new-generation-of-suckers-are-being-born/) Some of their past antics have included: misrepresenting listed horses, sending diseased horses into new homes, sending bailed horses to slaughter without telling anybody, bullet euthanized other horses that were paid for by sponsors without consulting them, placed numerous horses in unsuitable homes including placing some with somebody that sexually abused them.  Yes, you read that last part right.  They don’t give a shit about where those horses go or what happens to them and nothing has changed from one name change to another.  

These groups marketing and placing horses that have sadly fallen into the hands of traders all seem to share the same play book.  This brazen broad, Milbredt, openly admits to making significant profit for both herself and the feedlot owner.  And it’s clearly noted that the healthier horses are the ones shipped to slaughter!  If you think the other broker owned programs are any different, than we’ve got some beach front property in Arizona we’d like to show you.


Another Chance 4 Horses (AC4H) Now Breeding Rescue and Personal Horses

Another Chance 4 Horses is now breeding its own foals.   Kara, the rare Gotland Russ gave birth to Snuffy’s foal late in February.  We use the term “rare” somewhat tongue in cheek because while there are a limited number of this breed in America, no one has shown interest in this poor mare, including the one and only breeder here in the USA.  For many years she has been a small pony languishing on the dry lot that is the AC4H “traditional rescue.”

Snuffy has a beleaguered history.  He is a pony that was too thin to run through auction.  You can see him here:

(added in August 2012)
Urgent Fundraising Need -  Snuffy possibly a sulphur mustang -was deemed unfit for sale by the vet after being consigned to New Holland auction and we were asked if we wanted to help him.  Snuffy was wild, untouched and not people friendly he was coated with manure and it was so tight it was pulling the hair off and causing irritation to his skin.  He went to the vet’s for a couple weeks to have work done sedation, manure removal, treatment of irritated skin and a testosterone test which came back indicating he was a gelding.  Snuffy has come a long way in our care and Gail (volunteer) has really bonded with him.  Volunteers play a very important role hands on with the horses helping them to become adoptable and loving them while they wait for their forever families.  Recently Snuffy had a single testicle descend – imagine our surprise!  Snuffy has been gelded and actually two testicles one a high flanker which was abnormally small the other was normal size both were able to be removed.  Snuffy is officially a gelding.

 (original post)
Snuffy was reported to be a Kiger Mustang. Came to AC4H as an unfit for sale horse. He was untouched upon arrival, not halter broke and not people friendly but all of that has changed since he has been here. He is approximately 14 hands and coming 3 years old will lead, load and tie he will pick up his feet but needs continued work in the area and is a really cute mover and a very fast study. 


Note originally he was deemed a Kiger mustang.  Now he’s a Sulphur mustang.  Of course there’s no freeze brand, so it would be wildly speculative on our part to say which, if any, is correct.  More likely he's the product of poor quality backyard breeding and is continuing the cycle.

Snuffy was allegedly a cryptorchid.  In July of 2012 it was reported that Snuffy was mounting numerous mares at the rescue, where all the horses are housed together, no gender separation, on the 1 ½ acre lot.  In August, after urgent pleas for donations, Snuffy became a gelding.

However, for Kara to have been full term in February, she had to have been impregnated in March of 2012.  This colt was mounting mares for months before anything was done.

The story gets better.  Two days ago, Trixie Be Nimble, Christy’s personal  and well-bred AQHA mare gave birth to another of Snuffy’s foals.  Trixie has always been housed with the rescue horses, as are the Sheidy’s other personal horses.  There’s no separation of rescue versus personal horses.  Operating this way is a nice opportunity to feed (among other things) your personal horses out of non-profit 501c3 funds.

Note the comments.  "The foals will be up for adoption when they are weaned."  And, "All the other foals have stripes as well."  Doesn't "all" indicate that there's more than two?  Have you noticed how some of the mares formerly listed have suddenly disappeared from the available list, or are now listed as unavailable?


(from http://ac4h.com/AC4HPlaced2.htm )

Many questions arise.  Why aren’t the horses separated according to gender?  Who was asleep at the helm when this colt was mounting mares for at least 5 months?  Is it ethical or even legal to house your personal horses in your rescue?  How many more foals have been or will be born as a result of the months of Snuffy’s rampage?

And most of all ----

In a world where we all ready have too many poorly bred and homeless horses, what kind of a “rescue” would operate this way?


A comment posted on AC4H's FB page, by horse advocate Darrell R. Charlton, Jr.:

Darrell R. Charlton Jr. *sighs and weeps* And for every foal born another is pushed through the slaughter pipeline as there are too many foals and not enough loving, forever homes for them all. REMEMBER that each and every precious equine soul murdered began as a beautiful, precious foal! Until/unless there is a LONG waiting line for EVERY foal entering this world those that breed should NOT!


Yet Another Example of Why These Programs So Often Fail, and It's the Horse Who Pays

A good example of why these "programs" are so flawed.  A Camelot grad that now is isn't working out.  I hope this poor horse finds a soft landing, but what are the odds?

For more information about Zephyr contact: Megan McCarron

Her phone number:

Her email address:
 Horse's Name:

Horse's age:

Horse's Breed:
Belgian Cross

Where your horse is located.
Harrisburg, PA

Description of your horse:
7 year old Belgian Cross gelding. Obtained at Camelot Auction in Cranberry, NJ at the end of September 2012. Originated from New Holland auction in PA. Believed to be an Amish horse.

Issues with your horse:
Zephyr is young, green and a bit 'spooky'. Recently we have learned from a vet visit that he is suffering from Uveitis, has only partial vision and will go completely blind in the next couple of years. He is not mean or aggressive to people, but is unsure of them and is a bit nervous. Seems to have had limited contact with people prior to coming to me.

Why you are looking for a new home for your horse?
Due to his condition, and the fact that he is not trained, or has had very limited training, he is a safety risk at his current farm as it is an eductional and lesson facility for youth.

Health status including vaccinations:
Coggins came back clean. Vert confirmed he is healthy other than the Uveitis

So You're Just Compelled to Buy or Donate to a Broker/Feedlot Horse?

What really bothers us about these broker owned productions is that innocent people’s wallets are being robbed and their hearts are being broken.    Many of these horses are sick or debilitated in some way, or will get sick as a result of the auction/feedlot experience and may not survive.

Things to strongly consider if you think you just have to save a broker/feedlot owned horse and bring it home:

  •   Do you have a large enough savings account that you can devote to vet costs in the event that the horse you “adopt” comes to you with EPM, Navicular Disease, a metabolic disorder (Cushing’s and related diseases), cancer or some other serious or fatal condition?
  •  You must quarantine these horses from other horses.  They have been exposed to all kinds of contagious disease and a large percentage of them will contract strangles.  It’s painful for the horse and painful to watch, and sometimes it becomes fatal.  Quarantine will further drive your costs for this horse up.
  •  Do you have the emotional wherewithal to euthanize the horse when it arrives at your barn or weeks/months after you’ve spent time, money and love trying to save the horse if it turns out that is what is best for the horse?
  •  If the horse is unable to be ridden, either due to a physical condition or mental scarring, will you be happy to keep the horse as a pasture pet?  Many of these horses are drugged for their evaluations and what you get is not what you “saw” or what was described.
  (*our disclaimer here – many horses are also drugged to run through auctions.)

We’ve read the disclaimers from some of these programs (some don’t even bother to post a disclaimer) and shuddered when we read this one:

“We are not perfect…we sometimes make mistakes…we don’t always catch something wrong at the beginning that might be caught later.”  (this is where it gets really good)  “We are busy trying to save lives whether it be healthy horses, sick horses, crippled or lame horses, young or old.”

Read that as admission that they don’t care what they are selling you.  They want to sell horses so both they and Andio can get their cut.  And remember, sick, crippled, and lame horses are prohibited from shipping to slaughter.  And while certainly some of them do, they are not going to bring the good “hanging weight” the plants and kill buyers want to maximize their investments in slaughter horses.

So you think you just have to donate a small amount of “bail” to a broker owned horse?  Sure it leaves you with the warm and fuzzies as you drift off to sleep.  I helped save a horse!  Yippee for Me!

So often we see people offering to take these BO horses, as long as someone else will pay the purchase price (which includes the broker and the “rescue’s” cut), the overpriced Coggins, quarantine and transport fees.   Always ask yourself how an individual who can’t manage these fees is going to manage to pay for food, farrier, vetting, etc.  Horses are cheap to acquire, but expensive to maintain.

The truth of the matter is that often these horses are being taken by flippers and hoarders.  Look at the names of the women who step up and take horse after horse.  They often aren’t doing this out of the goodness of their hearts, it’s a great opportunity to try to flip free horses and make some cash!  Or, they are creating their own herd whose future is very much in question with the medical disorder that is hoarding.  And how often do we see these same horses that were “bailed” on Craigslist, an equine sales site or worse yet, back in the auction pipeline?

We would be remiss not to note there are some wonderful people out there taking horses, training them and giving them a positive future.  To them we give great kudos.  Unfortunately, those people are likely the exception and not the rule.

So, if you just have to purchase or donate to a BO horse, hopefully you have a good heart, robust pocketbook and very strong stomach.  Things can turn ugly very quickly for both you and the horse, particularly for the horse if the assistance you offer simply sends the horse to the next person who plans to exploit it.