"Aussie club to race hotties like horses" *

Wednesday, September 29th, 2010

Bayer Rintal - Whore

In this completely unrelated advertisement for Bayer Rintal, a stereotypically “slutty” looking woman – a sex worker, perhaps? – clings to a horse’s back. Though she seems to be nibbling on his (her?) neck, the horse remains unperturbed; calmly, he continues to nom on a field of green grass. A logo for Bayer Rintal sits in the lower left-hand corner of the image; to the far right, a green star burst on which is superimposed the ad’s copy: “Eliminates all kind of Parasites.”

Hmmm. Not-so-curiously, I find myself wishing that I’d followed my initial impulse to decorate this post with a fuzzy cute goat photo instead…
——————————

Presented without commentary:

Aussie horse club to race women in bikinis

An Australian horse racing club will lock bikini-clad women in barrier stalls and run them down the racecourse as part of a controversial new novelty event, the Gold Coast Bulletin reported Tuesday.

The Gold Coast Turf Club in the state of Queensland launched the event, which is planned to become an annual fixture at the club’s first race meeting of the summer season.

Some believe this will take the popular tourist destination to a new tacky low. In a Gold Coast Bulletin poll, 39 percent of respondents said the gimmick was degrading — while 61 percent disagreed.

Up to 150 women, who must wear bikinis and running shoes, will compete through a knockout system for a first prize of AU$5,000 (US$4,800).

The event was copied from America’s famed Hollywood Park racecourse, which holds a similar event annually.

Turf Club chief executive Grant Sheather acknowledged some may see the event as degrading, but said it would be done in “good taste.”

”When people say ‘Gold Coast’ you think of beach, you think of girls and you think of bikinis; it’s a marketing ploy to build racing,” he said.

I wonder: if a participant trips and breaks a leg, will she be put down?

* A notice under the byline states that the article was updated on September 28, but no update is noted in the actual body of the article. Methinks it was the title of the article that was “updated” – changed, that is, from “Aussie club to race hotties like horses” (which is what appeared on FB when I shared the link) to the tamer (and arguably less accurate à la its misogyny) “Aussie horse club to race women in bikinis.” In either case, IBTK.

h/t, Katrina Fox

Breaking: Gymnast Shawn Johnson Put To Sleep After Breaking Leg

Tuesday, June 16th, 2009

The Onion reports:
 


 
This video is chock full of snarky goodness, but my favorite part?

“Shawn was only 17 years old, so we never got to breed her.”

(More below the fold…)

On mares, wet nurses and shared exploitations.

Wednesday, April 8th, 2009

Photo via ImaginaryGirl

A few weeks ago, Jennie at That Vegan Girl wrote about a little-known practice of the horse racing industry in which genetically “undesirable” mares are made into “nurses” for the offspring of “thoroughbred” mares and stallions. When “prize” mares are prevented from nursing their foals themselves, they’re of more use to breeders, as they can be impregnated sooner. More babies = more product = more money. And it’s always about maximum profit, right?

In addition to severing the mother-child bond between the “prize” mare and her foal, this practice has even graver consequences for the “nurse” mare and her child. Remember – in order to produce milk, females must first produce a baby. So what happens to the “nurse” mare’s foal, the one for whom the “nurse” mare’s milk is actually intended?

Jennie explains:

The Jockey Club, which is the official governing body of Thoroughbred racing (the kind you see in the Kentucky Derby) does not allow embryo transfer or artificial insemination of horses. In order to have a baby every year, a mare must be re-bred directly after foaling, which means that she must be shipped to the stallion for breeding directly after having her own baby. It’s a process that usually takes three to four weeks in whole, and the foal is too delicate (and valuable!) to travel with his mother. Plus, if she nurses her own foal, she’s not going to come back into heat and thus cannot conceive. Since her whole purpose is to give the breeder potentially valuable offspring, she must be rebred, and since she cannot nurse her own foal and fulfill her “purpose”, a “nurse mare” is brought in.

In order to give milk, female animals generally need to be pregnant and have given birth (the oxytocin secreted during birth allows lactation to begin). In the “nurse mare” industry, like the dairy industry, the newborn foals become the byproducts of milk production. The nurse mares are generally horses of “lower quality” who are otherwise healthy and good milk producers. They are bred to inexpensive stallions for the sole purpose of being able to provide milk to the potential racehorse foals. But wait, you ask… what about their own foals? If you’re unfamiliar with horses, you might think she, like a human wetnurse, gets to nurse both her baby and the other mare’s baby. That doesn’t seem so bad, you might think. Not bad enough to provoke yet another horse “sport” related rant at least. However, if you are familiar with horses, you know that mares rarely produce enough milk to support two foals (one reason why twins are such a problem) and that you’d have to give the mare a substantial amount more feed and that the whole process would require extra attention, extra money. Since the point is to make the “valuable” foal grow up strong and healthy, and the extra foal has no “value”, there’s no chance that the mare’s real baby will get a share of her milk anyway, so what then?

Traditionally, these foals are killed.

That’s right. Like dairy calves, these sentient “byproducts” are killed because they’re not worth keeping alive. It’s not that you couldn’t. You could (and rescues do) keep them alive on formula. However, on large farms, there tend to be a large number and these farms are concerned not with life, but with their bottom line. It is time consuming and not cheap, per say, to do. So they kill them. Why? On the off chance that the foal that their mother nurses will fetch money at auction or win on the track or become a superstar stud (25% chance he will, 75% chance he’ll go to slaughter too). Because their mothers’ are more valuable pregnant than being able to properly bond with their children.

(By the by, this is but a small part of Jennie’s post; you should go read the entire piece, because it’s excellent. Don’t worry, I’ll still be here when you get back!)

(More below the fold…)

Kinship Circle: Eight Belles Ran For Her Life…And Died

Wednesday, May 7th, 2008

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: Kinship Circle – kinshipcircle [at] accessus.net
Date: Wed, May 7, 2008 at 1:33 PM
Subject: Eight Belles Ran For Her Life…And Died

KINSHIP CIRCLE PRIMARY – PERMISSION TO CROSS-POST AS WRITTEN

5/7/08: Eight Belles Ran For Her Life…And Died

FROM KINSHIP CIRCLE / PLEASE READ:

We ordinarily write all SAMPLE LETTERS. However in the recent death of young Eight Belles in the Kentucky Derby — we cannot out-write the magnificent letter PETA’s Ingrid Newkirk sent to presidential hopeful, Hillary Clinton. Ms. Newkirk’s letter is presented as a sample letter below:

1. CHANGE AS MANY WORDS AS POSSIBLE, TO MAKE THE LETTER YOUR OWN.
Include a DISCLAIMER as shown (BELOW). Remember: You are NOT Ingrid Newkirk.

2. KINSHIP CIRCLE BELIEVES HORSE RACING, LIKE DOGFIGHTING AND COCKFIGHTING, SHOULD BE OUTLAWED. However, if you’d like to participate in a campaign that calls upon “the racing industry to suspend the jockey and trainer, bar the owner from racing at the track, and… stop using young horses susceptible to horrific injuries…” PETA provides a web letter here: http://getactive.peta.org/campaign/eight_belles/iiwn8g8227xnmxix

Kentucky Horse Racing Authority
4063 Ironworks Pkwy, Building B; Lexington, KY 40511
ph: 859-246-2040; fax: 859-246-2039
email: lisa.underwood [at] ky.gov, jim.gallagher [at] ky.gov

Kinship Circle - 2008-05-07 - Eight Belles Ran For Her Life - And Died 01

LEFT PHOTO: Track personnel try to hold down Eight Belles after the 134th Kentucky Derby Saturday, May 3, 2008, at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky. Eight Belles was euthanized after breaking both front ankles following a second-place finish in the Kentucky Derby. (AP Photo/Brian Bohannon)
http://abcnews.go.com/Sports/wireStory?id=4784855

Kinship Circle - 2008-05-07 - Eight Belles Ran For Her Life - And Died 02

RIGHT: Eight Belles and trainer Larry Jones walk before the Derby.
http://news.bostonherald.com/sports/other_sports/horse_racing/view.bg?articleid=1091901

(More below the fold…)

DawnWatch: Entourage race horse rescue — Sunday, 5/6/07

Thursday, May 10th, 2007

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com
Date: May 10, 2007 7:02 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: Entourage race horse rescue — Sunday, 5/6/07

Photo via ajstarks

I get to tell you about yet another animal friendly episode on a hot show! This past Sunday, May 6 (the day after the Kentucky Derby) the HBO series Entourage provided — in its usual funny and hip style — a glimpse at the dark side of horse racing and the animal-soft side of Vince’s brother Drama.

If you have HBO on demand, stop reading now and go watch! The episode is loads of fun. Then come back to this email so that you can click the link below to send your thanks to the show.

For those who have never watched Entourage: It is produced by Mark Wahlberg and about a hot young movie star named Vince Chase, and his entourage — his actor brother named Drama, his manager Eric, and their buddy Turtle, all of whom have been inseparable for years.

And for those who missed Sunday’s episode and can’t just wait for this one on DVD — because you need to send your thank you note to HBO today, here is a little recap:

(More below the fold…)

DawnWatch: Kentucky Derby celebratory coverage needs balancing letters — 5/5/07

Tuesday, May 8th, 2007

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com
Date: May 5, 2007 7:57 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: Kentucky Derby celebratory coverage needs balancing letters — 5/5/07

I write this as the Kentucky Derby blasts from the TV in my conference hotel room. As Street Sense comes up up from 19th place to take the race, it is hard not to get caught up in the excitement. But we remember Barbaro, who won the Derby last year, then went down in the Preakness. There are so many others we do not remember.

For the last few days, as the Derby has approached, we have seen, heard and read tributes to Barbaro. And sadly, those tributes have avoided discussing the truth about horse racing. On CNN Headline News this morning, Barbaro’s doctor said that the kind of treatment Barbaro got was not unusual in his practice. He thus gave the misleading impression that such treatment might be the norm for an injured horse. No doubt that veterinarian does do such treatments regularly, as he is surely one of the highest paid veterinarians in the industry who treats those horses who will be lucrative breeders if kept alive after an injury. But such treatment is hardly common. Days after Barbaro went down at last year’s Preakness, New York Times sportswriter William C Rhoden did a beautiful piece on the fate of the average horse injured during a race. (See http://tinyurl.com/2fpu5f for the summary of and link to that piece, headed, “An Unknown Filly Dies, and the Crowd Just Shrugs”.) An Associated Press article published last year told us that approximately 700 horses are put down in the United States and Canada every year after racing accidents. And a Newsweek article explained, “most horses with an injury like Barbaro’s would be destroyed, sometimes right at the track.” It discussed the fight to save his life and commented, “But the extraordinary measures taken on his behalf also served as a reminder that if Barbaro weren’t potentially worth millions of dollars, or if his owners weren’t wealthy themselves, the steps he took on the track at Pimlico very likely would have been his last.” (That article is still on line at: http://msnbc.msn.com/id/13008304/site/newsweek/)

(More below the fold…)

DawnWatch: Barbaro dies – a look at horseracing in the New York Times editorial 1/30/07

Tuesday, January 30th, 2007

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com
Date: Jan 30, 2007 5:06 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: Barbaro dies – a look at horseracing in the New York Times editorial 1/30/07

Barbaro was euthanized yesterday, Monday January 29, eight months after suffering grave injury at The Preakness. His injury brought world-wide media attention and an outpouring of emotion since he had won the Kentucky Derby and looked like he could possibly win the Triple Crown.

The story is in every paper. The New York Times has run a sensitive editorial headed, “One Horse Dies” (January 30, pg 20).

It opens:

“Why should we feel so much grief at the loss of one horse? After all, this is a world in which horses are sacrificed again and again for the sport of humans. Barbaro was euthanized yesterday, eight months after he shattered his right hind leg at the start of the Preakness Stakes. After an injury like that, most racehorses would have been put down minutes later. But every race is a complex equation — a balance of economics, athleticism, equine grace and conscience. Conscience often comes in last, but not in this case. Barbaro’s owners gave that horse exactly what he had given them, which is everything. It was the very least they could do, and yet it seemed truly exceptional in a sport that is as often barbarous as it is beautiful.”

It discusses Barbaro’s grace, and comments, “And if his life caused us to pay attention to the possibilities of all horses, his death should cause us to pay attention to the tragedy inherent in the end of so many horses. Barbaro’s death was tragic not because it was measured against the races he might have won or even against the effort to save his life. It was tragic because of what every horse is.

“You would have to look a long, long time to find a dishonest or cruel horse.”

(More below the fold…)

DawnWatch: USA Today on drug use in horse racing — 12/11/06

Monday, December 11th, 2006

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com>
Date: Dec 11, 2006 3:04 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: USA Today on drug use in horse racing 12/11/06

USA Today, the most widely distributed newspaper in the US, has a December 11 story headed, “Report: Failed drug tests in horses increasing.”

It opens:

“The number of race horses that failed drug tests in California has nearly doubled since 2000, and the offenses rarely result in disqualification or other stiff penalties, The Orange County Register reported Sunday.

While failed drug tests have dropped significantly in other states that feature horse racing, California registered 142 violations out of 31,517 tests in 2005, compared to 72 violations after 29,876 horses were examined in 2000.

It ends with “Meanwhile, tens of thousands of urine and blood samples collected from horses that have raced in California over the past several years have never been tested. The newspaper reported California tested nearly 5,000 fewer horses last fiscal year compared to 2003, and the horse racing board spent less on testing in 2005 than it did in each of the previous five years.”

(More below the fold…)

IDA: Speak Out Against the Omak Suicide Race

Friday, August 25th, 2006

Via In Defense of Animals:

Speak Out Against the Omak Suicide Race

Every year, as part of their annual Rodeo, a small town in Eastern Washington State hosts the Omak Suicide Race, a deadly competition that has killed at least 20 horses since 1983. The race was held again this year from August 10th to 13th. Thankfully, no deaths occurred, but the horses may not be so fortunate next time. Please “Take Action” to urge Omak Mayor Dale Sparber to make 2006 the last year the Suicide Race is run.

DawnWatch: 2 lead articles on racing horrors –London’s Times on greyhound slaughter and Chic Trib on horses 7/17/06

Monday, July 17th, 2006

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com
Date: Jul 16, 2006 6:10 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: 2 lead articles on racing horrors –London’s Times on greyhound slaughter and Chic Trib on horses 7/17/06

Two lead articles today, Sunday, July 16, focus on the dark side of racing. The UK’s Times on Sunday front page includes a story headed, “Revealed: The man who killed 10,000 dogs.” (More below.)

And while we have read much about Barbaro’s injuries in the last few weeks, the Chicago Tribune has a lead story (cover of the Metro section) on another horse, named Warned. The contrast provides a dose of reality with regard to the horseracing industry.

(More below the fold…)

DawnWatch: KSDK TV news, "Sport Of Kings Hurting Some Horses" 7/12/06

Thursday, July 13th, 2006

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch – news [at] dawnwatch.com
Date: Jul 13, 2006 10:30 AM
Subject: DawnWatch: KSDK TV news, “Sport Of Kings Hurting Some Horses” 7/12/06

St Louis’s NBC affiliate aired, on July 12, a terrific story focusing on horse racing deaths. It shared some shocking statistics telling us that at the Fairmount racetrack up to mid-June this year there were 7 deaths, with just 47 racing dates. In 2005, 15 horses died with 102 racing dates.

Opening with a discussion of Barbaro (who is currently fairing badly) it makes it clear that the treatment he received after his injury was far from typical.

(More below the fold…)

DawnWatch: Newsweek, "Can Barbaro Beat the Odds?" June 5 edition

Sunday, June 4th, 2006

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: DawnWatch
Date: Jun 2, 2006 6:17 PM
Subject: DawnWatch: Newsweek, “Can Barbaro Beat the Odds?” June 5 edition

The June 5 edition of Newsweek includes an article headed, “Can Barbaro Beat the Odds? Behind the scenes at the audacious operation that could save the leg, and the life, of a great racehorse who has captured America’s heart. (Pg 50.)

We read that on average, “a horse breaks down on the track 1.5 times for every 1,000 starts, a statistic that has remained fairly constant for decades. If airplanes crashed at the same rate, no one would ever fly.

“And while people usually survive a broken leg, horses often don’t. Certainly, after suffering multiple leg fractures they would never be expected to race again.”

The article explains, “Infection is a serious risk, either at the fracture site or in the opposite foot, which sometimes breaks down from the stress of the additional weight it must bear. But you can’t keep them off their feet; horses lying down develop problems with their lungs and digestive systems. All by itself the pain of a bad injury–or the psychological stress it induces–can be fatal to horses. For that reason, most horses with an injury like Barbaro’s would be destroyed, sometimes right at the track. But Barbaro, unbeaten in six races before the Preakness, is potentially worth as much as $30 million as a breeding stallion.”

(More below the fold…)