Thursday, April 8, 2010

Canadian Slaughter Plants

FHOTD recently commented on Canadian Slaughter Plants. I would be great to get an opinion from someone with experience in a Canadian slaughter plant. (drum roll) Take it away sunshine and butterflies...

by sunshine and butterflies

She has never stood on a Canadian kill floor. I have.

She has never watched animals load ONTO a Canadian kill floor. I have.

She has never watched the butcher's wife LAY INTO a farmer for transporting his cows in a less-than-adequate trailer and refuse to take any more of his stock until he shapes up. I have.

She has never recovered the carcass of a 4H cow, sold legally at auction, off the railroad tracks after some Animal Welfare Advocates set it free. My husband has.

She clearly has never pet a tame horse, wearing a smock covered in cow blood as it entered the gates, NOT panicked by the sight or smell. Been there too.

She has never reviewed the published Canadian slaughterhouse/abbatoir regulations, and discussed each point with a real, live slaughterhouse owner. I have, cover to cover.

She has never studied the mechanics of a captive bolt gun, nor observed it in use. Real scientists have, and their results differ from the "studies" released by non-scientists at Animal Welfare groups.

She has never, EVER visited slaughterhouses that use rifles at close range to kill animals, because if she had, she'd shut up about the captive bolts...they AREN'T THAT POPULAR, even at factory slaughterhouses.

She has never spoken to a butcher about the few times a kill failed. In his 30 year history. That he remembers, each and every one. Heard about how critically dangerous it is when that happens and how IMMEDIATELY it is resolved...

I could go on. I like a lot of things about fugly, especially how she is a real rider, about on par with where many of us are (if we are honest about our own flaws) and she has the common sense about a lot of horsey things that people like me appreciate. WE DIFFER SIGNIFICANTLY in our knowledge and opinions on the Canadian slaughter industry.


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  2. Like, maybe it's just me...but copying over posts as articles is a little annoying. x.x I feel as if there should be some sort of small snippet written out over it instead.

    Still really busy. Found a horse to post, but right now school's eatin' me alive.

  3. I would love to see this post expanded upon. What exactly does happen at a professional operation? I have heard gruesome stories of the badly run places, but I would really like to hear more about how it is actually done at a professional facility. It's hard to make an informed decision when all you hear is one side of the story.

    I just watched the Temple Grandin movie, phenomenal.

  4. I don't know about factory slaughter or Canadian slaughterhouses but I have watched the procedure at a small, family owned meat locker with a cow (that I owned).

    The cow was transported to the meat locker and unloaded into a small pen in the back. After looking around a bit, she stood calmly until they were ready for her. They put a bucket of grain out for her and while she getting a mouthful, her head was in the right position and they used a captive bolt. It was instantaneous and I am quite certain the cow was never fearful in the least.

    Having seen that, I am quite sure that horse slaughter can be done equally humanely.

    No, I never dumped a horse. I never evaded responsibility for vet care or anything like that, as FHOTD alleges. I'm just not so parochial as to think that just because I wouldn't consume horseflesh, no one else should either.

  5. Maybe you should watch the footage, then, GD.

    What are you talking about?
    "I never evaded responsibility for vet care or anything like that, as FHOTD alleges."


    Not all of us care to read the comments, or FHOTD for that matter.

    So, no idea what you are talking about.

  6. And now she is a trainer??

    To quote her Ignorance...
    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Getting on a young horse you’ve roundpenned the living shit out of is NO test of skill. It’s NOT amazing. If I round pen something enough, I’m pretty sure your GRANDMA can get on it without any drama.

    Dear Fubby; Your scared to trail ride and now your a trainer? OMG you never cease to amaze me with your ignorance Thanks for the belly laugh.

  7. I do find it ironic, this post, truly, I do.

    SarcastaBitch is back:)

    And she thinks fugs is a "real rider."

  8. Anonymous, I am sure there are horrifying conditions at some slaughter facilities. That doesn't mean that slaughter itself has to be inhumane, just that the conditions at that particular place are inhumane. In much the same way, a specific extended care facility may be hell on earth but that doesn't mean *all* extended care facilities are horrible or that there is something inherently horrible about the concept of extended care.

    As for my comments about never having dumped a horse or evaded responsibility for vet care, you're right, I should have provided context. FHOTD set up a nice little straw man/ad hominem by alleging that the only people who support (humane) slaughter are people who want to dump their horses or are unwilling to pay for appropriate vet care for them.

    Something Fugly Horse of the Day is apparently unwilling to learn is that a person can support humane slaughter (which would include humane transport, of course) and still be an exemplary horse owner.

  9. Okay, I watched the videos. To put a couple of the shots in context, gruesome as it sounds, there is frequently involuntary thrashing that occurs after death.
    Since the film is edited and anonymously donated I have no idea if the misplaced kill shots happened over a time period of a week or several years. Of course the kill shots should be better placed, but on the kill floor things can go wrong, and when you're dealing with an enormous animal things can get scary. Not all horses taken to kill facilities are tame...!
    Are kill facilities required to use a rifle? That doesn't look as efficient or safe as it should be.
    I am in no way excusing what is happening on film, but the labels were not entirely accurate. I did not think one of the horses was 'reaching to the human for comfort' at all.
    As a member of the medical community I have seen humans thrash and quiver during the death process, and I'm sure someone could have edited a clip of film to prove whatever point they wanted to prove.
    I also wondered about the numbering system for the horses. How many were cleanly killed? Were any of the workers or management interviewed?
    GD, what you said!
    I saw a horse take over an hour to die by lethal injection, and it was far more gruesome than an animal suffering for a matter of (possibly) an couple of minutes, who more than likely had enough brain trauma to scramble the thought process entirely. I've seen horses panic as the drugs hit their system, and the look in their eyes is heart rending, yet the alternative is to let them suffer horribly and die over a matter of days, weeks or months.
    Death is a fact of life.

  10. Kestrel said "Death is a fact of life."

    It seems to me that a lot of the super hard-core animal rights activists have not yet squared themselves with this concept. I would rather that death happen in a controlled, humane way than to let a horse starve to death or to suffer needlessly.

    Meat plants in the United States (and I presume Canada) go out of their way to treat animals humanely. It's the law, and if they refuse to do so, their plants can be shut down. Meat inspectors who work within the plants have the authority to fine, stop production or otherwise control the situation if they believe the conditions are inhumane. And they do advocate for the humane treatment of animals. I know this because I have a family member who works as an inspector.

    The rhetoric surrounding slaughter doesn't look at the whole picture--the various people involved in the production of meat for sale--and that's too bad because it oversimplifies the issue.

  11. Are kill facilities required to use a rifle? That doesn't look as efficient or safe as it should be

    No, there are a few things they can use. Personal opinion by the butcher I spoke to (HIS slaughterhouse didn't do horses, mind you) is that rifles are more accurate and reliable than captive bolts. Not always a .22 either, some larger animals were killed with .22 Magnum (I think that's right) or .303. Bison particularly, they have very thick skulls. The opinion I got was that the rifle is safer for the human, and less likely to panic the animal...someone has to hold a captive bolt to reach the animal. Pigs are electrocuted with sort of a taser/prod thing. I don't know what it is actually called.

    The twitching and thrashing of that pinto was very sad. Not convinced that he was still alive for a good 45 seconds though. Sometimes the kill fails. It is sad, but like kestrel method is foolproof. Dosages can be tricky, not all horses react the same. My Arabian colt took 3 times the dose of tranquilizer my Clydesdale mare needed. THREE TIMES. If there were a foolproof method, THEY WOULD USE IT.

    Anyway, I'm not pretending whatsoever to be an expert, I want that to be clear. I have had a very, very tiny view into the world of slaughterhouse owners/operators.

    Hi anonymous, I think you might be misusing the term "irony"...I've made the identical post many places before, INCLUDING on FHOTD. She is 100% aware of all my views.

    I also think that you put too much reverence to the term "rider." People who regularly get on horses and direct their activities are, in fact, "real riders" and that includes me and FHOTD. I know, that hurts your soul to hear. More people in the horse world than not are "real riders," flawed, imperfect, and enjoying themselves. Try not to let it make you so angry. Taking lessons is a great way to improve, but we don't all get to lofty places (where you surely reside.)

  12. One more personal experience, on the topic of tranquilizing horses. Which is how humane euthanasia usually works, tranquilizer then some type of adrenaline-mimicking thing. My Arabian was not a happy camper, standing in the stocks half-tranquilized. He had me there, who he trusted, but he was scared and snorty. We waited, then administered more, and then MORE...THEN he was ok for tooth floating.

    Just because I was standing there, full of love for the little guy, didn't change the fact that he was panicky, felt weird and knew he couldn't escape. He recognized his own compromised condition. Is that really a whole lot BETTER than some of what happens in a slaughterhouse? Especially if things go to plan (which, by all accounts including the CHDC, happens most of the time)?

  13. S&B, thanks for clarifying the reason for using a gun. Totally makes sense.

    The polarity of the issue drives me crazy, because sentimentality inherently defies logic. If the sentimentalists hate slaughter they should be required to advance an alternative solution.
    I think anon's issue is with people who rarely ride representing themselves as experts...and my pet peeve is people who have trained a total of zero horses telling me, ever so earnestly, how it's done! Have you ever noticed that the only perfect parents are the ones who don't have kids?

  14. Well, I guess I differ there, maybe because I emailed back and forth with fugly a lot...I never really saw her (still don't) as presenting herself as a riding or training expert. I think she presents herself as a pretty accurate example of what a big majority of her readers are, pretty intelligent adult women who aren't necessarily brilliant in the riding arena, but can generally keep themselves from putting the grain bucket at the tail end of the horse.

    You know what I mean? Even me, while I have loads to learn about riding and training, I do know a few general truths about the subject, and am proud of my successes :) Enough to realize that jumping on a horse from the tailgate of a truck, such that it bows under your impact is sorta not just bad training, but really cruel. I can also recognize a butt-ugly horse, AND recognize anyone's right to own/love/fawn over it. I can also pretty accurately recognize a nice-looking horse.

    I agree with you, the polarity of things is enough to drive anyone crazy. One point though, is that Fugly never minces words that she's an extremist about slaughter and such. She's also an extremist about cats and barbed wire fences. Two other areas we differ *sprays cat with vinegar bottle for transgression while gazing out at tensile wire fence* I still enjoy her posts on ridiculous training and really dumb commercial breeding. She (like me) has really never personally attacked people who breed one fugly to another fugly for their own little personal fugly, provided they have the means to care for said little fugly :) Those posts are just so overshadowed by the shady, shadiness of launching personal attacks into the real lives of the "guilty." :(

    All sides of the argument though, and I am (and always have been) adamant...the real life interferences HAVE GOT TO STOP. Someone tried to "get me" in what they thought was a real clever way...which then resulted in my pointing the finger at the wrong person (very sorry, you know who you are), and more drama ensued...I'm more'n happy to type here and read all sorts of terrible things about myself...and I pretty much figure that anyone who types out-spokenly on public domain should be prepared to as well...but I draw the line at email. Seriously. I have a choice to click here and read, but I have a lot less choice about opening my inbox to find some string of abuses deposited there. I don't email people, even ones named "guilty" of some terrible cruelty...that's wrong in my book. Other people have different lines, I guess.

  15. CinammonSwirl said...
    Like, maybe it's just me...but copying over posts as articles is a little annoying. x.x I feel as if there should be some sort of small snippet written out over it instead.
    I'm very ill so it's hard for me to write all the time. I would like to encourage everyone to write up post. You can either post it here or email me at

  16. With Fugly, it bothers me that she would point out the riding mistakes of others while not possessing riding basics. To add to it, she posts about it in a forum that she knows will encourage hate mail.

  17. With Fugly, it bothers me that she would point out the riding mistakes of others while not possessing riding basics.

    I get that point of view, I can see where you're coming from. I don't disagree, a lot of the time.

    The spot I think a lot of others come from too though, is that one of the reasons I can recognize balancing off the reins is that I did it, got corrected, and still periodically do it ;) My noticing it in someone else doesn't mean that I suck any less. For example, if I could find a shot of Beezie Madden doing something imperfectly, I would be all "HAY! Isn't this an example of a leg being weak?" Not to say that I was a good rider, or that Beezie Madden is anything but a near-perfect rider, but more out of pride of "I believe I've finally figured out what that flaw looks like."

    Some criticisms are just mean though. Pretty common in the riding world. I once had a lady at the stable so pissed off that I wouldn't clean up after her horse before I mounted up, that she reamed me out for my polo wraps and accused me of abusing the lesson horse. Insults are a great way to target frustrations. I'm guilty. Try hard not to do it though, all my riding victories are hard-fought, I don't have much business picking anyone else apart, unless it is in the spirit of critique-to-improve either or both of us. If someone asks me/a forum for a critique, I love to try and figure stuff out. My coach does this too, will sometimes "narrate" a ride for us. It isn't meant to be mean.

    I am going off on many tangents today, my day off is proving to be not what I expected...the house is clean, but my outdoor chores are postponed due to BLIZZARD! GAWD!

  18. SB, hear ya on the blizzard! we got it last night , blow your hair off wind and 2 inches of snow, still have the wind today ,but the snow is melting some. Hang in there ,spring will come eventually.
    I watched the vids so some extent , it is presented as a far more common event than is true , and I imagine the workers there suffer a good bit as well , it is a rare individual who can watch an animal struggle and not be affected . This issue will always be a polarizing one ,and it seems there will never be middle ground . Slaughter is what it is and no amount of in fighting and email attacks on private individuals will change it . The issue that I had with Fugly that turned me off is that IMHO she became malicious and attacked all comers with little or no real evidence. The VLC is not a bad horse ,is he the next big thing? I doubt it but he is not a horse I would be ashamed of either. Fugly has set herself up for a lot of the negativity with her vitriolic attacks on others "krazy kolor breeder" and unwillingness to bend on many issues "People who live in glass houses"

  19. Snicker, snicker we've been over 90 and near 100 for the past week. Today we had a cooling off only in the low 80's.

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  21. I do like that humane options are available for euthenasia. What is done with the carcass afterwards is not a issue to me. I am concerned about a "use them up and through them out" mentality. I not certain, at this point, if slaughter promotes it or how to stop it. Just a thought.

  22. I'm not sure that slaughter promotes disposable horses. The only people I have known who sent a horse to auction agonized over it. They were non-pros, just-for-fun types who had bought horses who turned out to have major craziness issues. They couldn't stomach taking them to slaughter on their own, and held out some hope that someone at auction would be able to train them. Nice horses. NUTS. The one had real shades of the Hercules rumours...a super-pretty bay roan stock type. 16hh+, extremely nicely conformed, and sweet as anything. Until you tried to make him do anything trickier than leading in a straight line. Meltdown. Could it have been solved? Probably, my SIL and I made a bit of progress in the two or three days he was at MIL's farm waiting for the truck...but who the hell wants a horse who wants to kill them? We only worked with him so that he might have a better shot, so that he'd at least LEAD. I could go to most any ranch in the area (FV's area, for interest) and pick up a good looking blue roan who WASN'T nuts. For cheap-to-free.

    I can also tell you that the woman who sent that roan, via my MIL, to auction, would have CRUMBLED AND DIED under what was written about that Wendy character. She agonized for three years about this FIVE YEAR OLD horse who tried repeatedly to pin her against various flat surfaces. She's a super nice woman with a limitless heart, but she has enough money to support ONE horse. ONE. Why would anyone want to make her feel guilty and terrible for finally deciding to use her one-horse-space to support a good equine citizen? This lady is a compassionate horse owner, willing to do the work of training...why not get her a horse who is more on the trainable side of trainable?

    When we dug through the cadaver feet from Fort MacLeod at my farrier training course, it was hard to find one that didn't have some kind of lameness-inducing weirdness. Serious club feet, congenital malformations that resulted in really bad imbalances, chronic abcesses, all types of founder and laminitis, teeny tiny hooves on big chunky legs...finding a regular hoof was actually a prize. I won't lie, seeing a tub full of disembodied horse legs made me a little sick at first. I popped in some cinnamon gum and dug in though. I was keen to make my mistakes on a hoof where it REALLY WOULDN'T MATTER before I took the nippers to my horses' rather more important hooves!!

    Conclude what you want from those items...what I concluded was that the vast majority of horse people I know don't consider auctions a real appropriate way to "get rid" of a healthy, useful animal. Slaughterhouses seem to be heavily populated by the lame, elderly and chronically not-useful. Oh, and of course, the "bred for meats." There are still a few ranches in Canada that breed horses for meat.

  23. S&B,

    You are one brave lady. It would take way more than a stick of cinnamon gum to keep me in there. Now put me in with a bunch of human cadavers, no biggie.

    As a horse lover, it couldn't have been easy to observe what you did, even though it was done in the most humane way. I think most everyone should experience that, however, I would probably make a total idiot of myself.

    This is an issue that I struggle mightily with. I can see all sides except the inhumane transport and treatment of equines and all other food animals.

    Have you had any luck in your search for a new horse?

  24. Sorta...I ended up buying Spooky's totally unbroke little brother to keep my filly company. He is being delivered next weekend, but he is really a side project. Cute as a button. If he's rideable by the end of summer, I'll be happy. I told my coach I was buying "a goat" though, to keep Zo company while I kept looking for a new show/lesson horse. I didn't want another unbroke one, just a companion animal, but the rules in our district have can't keep anything but dogs, cats and horses anymore! No goat, llamas, alpacas, sheep, cows, etc. I figured I'd get myself a pretty, hairy, overly-romantic type to decorate my yard ;)

    No luck on the show horse coach has one for me to try, apparently, but I am trapped here until next week! Still being regularly shocked at what is being presented to me as "beginner safe." I keep telling people, straight up, that I am NOT a good rider and that I am a newbie, etc. THE LIES CCC! THE LIES I HEAR!

  25. --the saddest animal to watch get killed for food, IMHO, is still deer. They are all wild and free one minute...depressing. Delicious, but depressing. I've never shot one, terrified that I'd miss.

    Somehow, the domesticated types that run through a just doesn't hurt my soul as much. Not that I've seen a bunch of any of this. One quick, clean kill. It was enough.

    Oh, and you know what else? Look at the height of what a lot of folks haul their show horses in. Then ACTUALLY MEASURE a double decker. I will contend, wholeheartedly, that a properly loaded stock trailer offers more head AND BODY room than some shiny new angle load horse trailers. There are rules in Canada about livestock hauling, and if you see a craptacular example...REPORT THE DRIVER! The fines are actually significant.

  26. S&B, is Zora back at your place? I bet Spooky's lil bro is pretty cute. Nothing wrong with having company for your horses. Too bad about not being able to keep pacas, I have several I would gladly give you, lol!

    I have Buck the Perch, who while quite rideable, is really only to keep my old show hunter Spunky company.

    Keeping my other two Wizard and Whinnie worked is about all I can handle anymore.

  27. Okay, funniest word verf yet, bedboa. Is that a new kind of snake? Maybe a large Boa Constrictor that likes to sleep in the bed!

    My dogs would not like that very much!

  28. S&B,

    I know I have been pretty critical of you on several occasions, but I do think you are a better rider than you think you are. Hell, if nothing else, you try very hard in whatever you do.

    Sometimes, you can find a horse who might not be the total package, but might work. The Pally in my pics was a very green five year old, but he had a great mind and we really clicked. With a good trainer, we did really well. My advice, when you are trying different horses, if you feel a connection, go with it.

  29. As far as hunting, while I could never actually pull the trigger on any animal unless it was threatening in some way, I do understand the need for it. My father and brother hunt and my mother back in her day. The ramifications of over population are far worse than anything associated with hunting, the Bambi angle of it is nothing but Disney at its finest.

  30. S&B,

    I hope I don't make you mad at me again, but I do have to disagree about some of your perceptions of FUGLY.

    She does critique people's riding abilities and she really has no right to do so.

    I understand where you are coming from, we all watch other people riding and can see the good and the bad, but then again, we do not put that up on a public blog.

    One of my biggest problems with Fugs is that she can dish it, but she sure as hell can't take it. I especially found that out on HD.

    As far as the BYC, I have always liked him and I even supported her plan for him in the past, unfortunately, he hasn't met her plan goals, so she needs to re-evaluate her goals for him, yet she won't do that. She is now making excuses for his poor performance. She just wants to breed him and that is all there is to it. In a better world, where there aren't so many horses, it might be a different story, but why do we need more horses produced by another QH stallion of mediocre breeding and really mediocre color in this world? Ms FHOTD needs to take off her rose colored glasses and see reality, and gosh, maybe practice what she preaches. I don't think that is ever going to happen, but hey, here is hopig!!!!

    She needs to grow up, I think it is time for her to walk the walk, until she does so, she needs to shut her very large yap!

  31. SB, I have a 1 or 2 here that might suit. Email me at

  32. SB,
    Do all plants have shot guns?

    I second the following:


    I know I have been pretty critical of you on several occasions, but I do think you are a better rider than you think you are."

  33. As a form of euthenasia I would use a bolt or a gun. If the horse puts it's head down to eat grain and the shot is delivered quick and accurately then I would consider it humane.

  34. SB,
    Do all plants have shot guns

    No idea. My FIL's did, for sure, because they had to use it on a big bison bull once. It's a backup at their place though. The .22 pretty much works on everything, according to my husband.

    She does critique people's riding abilities and she really has no right to do so.

    Hee, that's kind of the main spot where a lot of you guys here disagree with me. What gives anyone the right to criticize anyone else? How good do you have to be to criticize? Can a really good Reiner criticize a really good Dressage rider? Generally all people have (many share) opinions on how other people do things. Look at your average football fan, criticizing the quarterback on a winning team! I bet Mr. Fan can't throw a football 20 yards!

    I understand where you're coming from too, it can be infuriating to see someone who hasn't "earned their stripes" picking apart someone who has. Makes me yearn for my days in the Marching Band, you could just assign pushups for impertinence. Look inside next time though, are you madder when FHOTD is wrong, or when she has a point? :D I HATE when people are mean and have a point about my riding. Bastards and their rightness. SHUT UP! The ones who are wrong? Super easy to just smile and ride on.

    Don't get me wrong, I really do understand your points too, just filling in the way I see it sometimes.

    As for BYC, I think he's a real cutie. I respect FHOTD for not starting him very fast, he grew really speedily...trying to get him in a WP frame at his age is probably not a good idea. It isn't Reining, so there's no real push to get him in the Futurities and stuff. In that respect, I think she really does practice what she preaches! He also isn't standing at stud or breeding yet. I don't know anything about Western disciplines. I do think that it is possible to do a good job proving your stallion over a longer period of time though.

    The one thing though, that I do really take issue with, is that in the FHOTD world, you are supposed to be willing to take responsibility for the lives you create. This is all hypothetical at this point, so I am not really super-concerned or anything yet, BUT there is a bit of a hole here. In my opinion, that means being ABLE. If you're standing a stallion alone, but do not own a significant chunk of property...are you really able to take responsibility for what you breed? Is it just on the mare owner then?

    Word verf: "corses"

  35. Fern, do you have any experienced show Hunters? Right now my coach is only permitting trials on horses with experience in the Hunter ring. Hence why Spooky's brother is officially "a goat." LOL. I do keep coming across some very pretty "FV" Appaloosas on Northern Horse though, are those ones all yours?

  36. SB, none of mine are experienced Show hunters , the horse I wondered about for you is a 4 yr old named FV Canadian Classic, she is a peach and just competed in her firstschooling show ,scored 58%in her first dressage test and placed 4th in a hunter hack(crossrail class) pretty green stuff , but the mare is willing and very quiet. That said I am glad you are working with a coach on this search and you are best to go with her advice. The horses you are seeing with a FV prefix are mine farm name Fern Valley Appaloosas .Thanks for the compliment I work hard to raise good stock

  37. Sure, we all critique, but to openly mock someone's riding on a very public forum is just mean spirited and rotten. The top riders didn't get there overnight, it took them years and along the way there were quite a few moments that could have been ripped apart by some FHOtD type, but hopefully most people have too much class to do so.
    Since I came across Fugly's blog and her readers comments, especially when they randomly post people's flicker pictures for all to mock and pick apart, I absolutely cringe when I see cameras shooting away at a show. My riding is far from perfect, I don't really want to end up as fodder for anyone's blog. But in the age of technology I guess that's what we'll have to start putting up with since class and decency is flying out the window.

  38. When I first started reading FHOTD, it was a breath of fresh air. She didn't pull any punches about irresponsible horse ownership, and she did offer some great advice on various topics. (One that comes to mind was her how-to on slowly bring a horse into better condition in the spring or after a layup.) I didn't agree with her on everything, but she seemed a lot like some of the people I knew: no expert but trying like hell to get it right.

    Then she started the VLC blog, and I admired her for talking about her fear as a re-rider and about her goals as a rider. As a fearful re-rider, the VLC blog became a touchstone for me. I wasn't alone in my anxiety and worry!

    But somewhere along the way, she lost her original purpose. The adulation she received corrupted the message. She saw that her audience could be controlled and manipulated into harming others. She posted real people's names and Web sites and addresses, and people started getting hurt in real life. She went after someone who had a history of addiction and mental illness. She publicly shamed children. She cruelly attacked people she obviously had a personal issue against.

    That's when I soured on the Fugly blog. I remember one day, after reading a particularly vitriolic post, thinking "was this blog always like this...because this kind of hatefulness just doesn't fit with my value system." I started reading with a more critical eye, and I started seeing odd mistakes and an unwillingness to admit she was wrong or to moderate her attacks on others. It took about two months for me to realize she is full of it.

    I guess my point is that I feel like FHOTD's original purpose and tone has been subverted by Cathy's ego and hubris. Or at least that's what I like to think because otherwise me liking it at first says a lot about my own character, and I don't like what it says at all.

  39. DING, DING, DING!!!

    Very well said Anon 5:52!

  40. S&B, good points.

    I guess what really bothers me is her whole attitude. To me, there is just too much "do as I say, not as I do" going on with her. I remember early on in the VLC blog a poster did a critique on her riding. Even though the critique was correct, she was quite pissed off. So really, if she is going to critique other's riding skills, then she should be prepared to accept the same in a mature manner.

    You are right about the VLC, she has taken care to bring him along slowly and yes, you are right again, there is nothing wrong with proving your stallion over time. I really hate seeing young horses pushed too early in any discipline like so many do. But given that his pedigree isn't stellar, he does need to start doing something in the show ring pretty soon in order to prove that he does actually have talent and is really breeding quality and not just breeding quality in FHOTD's own mind.

    Once again, I have a problem with her attitude. I thought she had a good plan for BYC a while back, but her tone has changed since then. I could be wrong (happens alot) but it now sounds like she is going to keep him intact, no matter what. Another example of "do as I say, not as I do."

    I agree with your final comments about being responsible for those lives that one helps to create. She preaches this over and over, yet she would (as of now and considering her history) not be able to do so. Why is this okay for her and not others?

  41. "My riding is far from perfect, I don't really want to end up as fodder for anyone's blog. But in the age of technology I guess that's what we'll have to start putting up with since class and decency is flying out the window."

    No, class and decency are only flying out the FHOTD window. Like they say, FHOTD has plenty of class; too bad all of it's low. Everyone else who doesn't post on there tearing Fugs' victims apart, has class.