In the last week of August, Elizabeth Lecoq-Currier drove past a pasture of 60 horses in Crested Butte that she soon found out were bound for the slaughterhouses of Mexico.
After discovering that the property owner would sell them for an overpriced fee of $400 apiece, Lecoq-Currier emailed horse advocates around the world asking for donations to save the horses. In less than five days $24,000 was raised and all 60 horses were saved including 20 that were adopted, according to the Associated Press.
Lecoq-Currier, a Colorado native and interior designer from Crested Butte, told 9News that she believes there should be facilities available for the humane euthanization of horses rather than roundups that send them to slaughterhouses in Canada or Mexico where many animal rights advocates insist that conditions are barbaric.
All of the horses were temporarily grazing on pasture land in order to gain weight and value, and were scheduled for transport to Mexico for sale and slaughter on September 8th. My thought was, “if I can encourage just one person to purchase and adopt one of these horses, I would be happy.” I wrote an email that eventually circulated around the country. The following day, Aug 28th, the first of 60 horses was spared from Mexican slaughter by a woman in Evergreen, Colorado.
According to the Animal Welfare Institute, U.S. slaughter of horses ended in 2007 but exportation of the animals has continued for consumption of their meat. For those who may scoff, thinking horse meat outdated, it has been known to be popular in France, some Asian countries, Siberia, Belgium, Germany, Brazil, Switzerland and even made a recent appearance on last year's "Top Chef Canada."
Senators Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Mary Landrieu (D-La.) in June both introduced the "American Horse Slaughter Prevention Act of 2011" to prevent any exportation of horses for slaughter.
Lecoq-Currier goes on to specify in her editorial that a third party was the owner of the 60 horses that were saved, and not the rancher who she was able to buy the horses from.
"It is with great thanks to this local rancher that these horses are allowed to have a second chance at life," Lecoq-Currier wrote.