Thursday, March 6, 2008

Color guaranteed - survival, not so much

It's been a while since we've focused on a Krazy Kolor Breeder here. We all know who they are. They claim their stallion produces 100% color (because they don't register the plain brown ones), or they have a HIDEOUS looking cremello. They can talk all day about perlinos, grullas, palominos, buckskins and how you get each of those, but they ignore upright shoulders, backs longer than a dachshund's and calf knees. They can quote you the colors involved in their horse's ancestry, but can't point to a single point earner in the past three generations. The most recent "name" horse in their stud's pedigree is Bucephalus.

Well, I think we have discovered the worst of the worst of Krazy Kolor breeders. Recently, after many years of complaints which somehow resulted in nothing, Jean Marie Elledge was finally arrested for animal cruelty. Here's the news article. Four dead, one near death. The dam to one of these foals was lying dead a few feet away - partially eaten by coyotes. LOVELY.

(Do I have to mention that Ms. Elledge was living in the house, with dead horses right out her window? Oh yeah. She was. Now we're going to have to pay for her to sit in prison. SHE'LL get to eat. What b.s. Just shoot her. It's what she deserves. I am not kidding, I do not understand why our system allows people who are unspeakably evil to sit comfortably in jail and have all of their needs provided for. They have better medical and dental care than most of the hardworking people I know in the horse industry. It's a crock of shit. They should be suffering like the suffering they caused. Send them all to that sheriff in Arizona who makes them live in tents with no a/c, I say...)

These allegedly are Saddlebreds and allegedly Ms. Elledge had a cremello Saddlebred stud which was the probable sire of these foals. Of course she did.

They are now in the care of Save A Forgotten Equine, for those of you who would like to donate. SAFE could particularly use foster homes, if you are local and have space for one of these little squirts. It sounds like they are pretty easy to handle and people-friendly.

Now here's my question. OK, another day, another wacko hoarder. But does anybody see how a lot of this happened? Well, to begin with, CLEARLY the people who sold Ms. Elledge horses did not ask to see her property. She has a LONG history of this kind of behavior and there have ALWAYS been emaciated horses at her house. Numerous people are saying they reported her and nothing was done (what else is old).

Then there's someone who boarded with her and now her horse is missing. Of course, she admits she hadn't gone to see it in 2-1/2 months, even though she's local. Apparently a bunch of people boarded with Elledge. There were normal weight horses owned by others found on the same property with the dead horses and of course A.C. left them there. Gee, don't ANY of you go check on your horses? I sure hope you've moved them NOW!

Here's another question: Did Elledge sell any horses? Who came to her property? Boarders and probably potential buyers, too? How many people failed to report the things they saw? How many of those four dead horses would be alive today if someone had simply taken some discreet camera phone pics and gone to A.C. with them?

How many different people failed this colt?
I think it's human nature not to want to start shit. Well, some of us clearly are better at it then others ;-) but many of us have at least a streak of conflict avoidance. Still, this is life and death and the horses need for you to have a spine. When you see something like this, you HAVE to take action. No, don't do anything illegal. Don't endanger yourself in any way. But do what you can do. Snap those discreet camera phone pictures and take them to animal control. If animal control ignores you, try the sheriff. Try the local newspaper. Talk to a local rescue for advice about dealing with a.c. in your county. All a.c.'s are different and a good rescue probably knows the best way to get action.

Please, don't ever look at something like this and walk away.

Of course, this is yet another example of:

1. Breeding low end horses based only upon color.

2. Having absolutely NO plan with regard to feeding, training, or vet care. You KNOW those mares NEVER saw a vet during their pregnancies. Those babies have NEVER seen a tube of dewormer or a farrier before now. You should see the worm pics, they're on SAFE's message board. Ewwwwwwww.

3. Taking on far more than you can afford AND THEN BREEDING MORE. Again, BREEDING means you have MORE to FEED. It is not something you should do when your finances are shaky to begin with! BREEDING LOW END HORSES DOES NOT MAKE MONEY. IT DOESN'T! NOT EVER! If you are a lowlife with no morals who can't possibly bring yourself to get a job, DEAL DRUGS or BECOME A PROSTITUTE. Those things actually MAKE money. Feeding a mare for fifteen months to get a foal you sell for $150 at the auction does not constitute a profit!

The news articles blame the starving horses on the price of hay, ignorant beginner owners, and even the PMU industry. Well, the price of hay is not honestly that much higher than it has been for the past several years. Elledge was not a beginner owner. She'd had horses for many years. And the PMU industry is not relevant to this case.

This is just plain old hoarding, enabled for years by plenty of perfectly sane people who didn't care enough to speak up/were afraid to speak up and/or had some kind of misguided loyalty to Elledge. And somewhere, I am sure, a fast talking horse breeder/seller who sold Elledge that cremello stud with promises of how much money she would make breeding golden Saddlebreds...