24. October 2019

USA | Shelby | Bouvry’s horse assembly centre

The horses are kept in muddy pens without shelter or dry resting places.

A horse has overgrown hooves and is severely lame (on the left).

Two dying horses are shot by an employee.

Two other horses have died without assistance.

Together with our partner Animals’ Angels USA, we have been monitoring the horse feedlot in Shelby, Montana, for many years. The feedlot serves as the US assembly centre for Bouvry, the largest Canadian horse slaughterhouse. Our previous investigations have uncovered tremendous abuse and neglect.

We return to Shelby in October 2019 and observe the location for two days. The temperatures are around freezing point. About 1500 horses hold out in muddy pens after heavy snowfalls. Some are standing in the mud up to their knees. There is still no weather protection for the horses. Not even young foals have dry resting areas available. We notice one horse with extremely long, overgrown hooves. The hooves are so long that the animal is barely able to walk.

When we arrive on the second day early in the morning, we see two dead horses lying in deep mud. Two other horses are dying and they are shot in the head by a female worker. She then just walks away without verifying if the horses are really dead. We can tell watching through the camera lens that one of them does not immediately quit breathing. Afterwards, a group of horses is loaded onto a Canadian truck and shipped over the border to the Bouvry slaughterhouse.

Nothing has improved in Shelby. The conditions at the feedlot remain unacceptable, and we will report our observations to the competent authorities in the United States and the European Union.