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Alberta woman's horses slaughtered
An Alberta woman boarded her horses with a friend. When the friend died she was given until the end of April to move the horses. When she arranged for their move, the horses were gone. They had been sold, sent to a slaughterhouse and they were already dead.

The slaughterhouse did not ask for proof of ownership before it killed the horses. Someone claiming to be the owner sold them. He has been caught and charged.

It won't bring the horses back, but it is important that the man who stole the horses be charged. 
Certainly the slaughterhouse  needs to think about its actions. They clearly didn't verify that the horses belonged to the man selling them.

I guess there is a lesson in safety for our pets here. If we have to board a pet like a horse we need to be sure that the pet will be safe even if something happens to the place where the horse is boarding. Maybe horses need to be labeled better.
Something needs to be done so that this can never happen again.
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There are a lot of unanswered questions here, such as:

If the bank was going to foreclose on the loan, why was the ex-husband of the deceased lady on the property at all?
As an ex-spouse not living on the property, why did he take it on himself to dispose of the horses without permission?
Why was he willing to pay for the transportation to the slaughter house, which must have cost nearly the same as the money he received for the horse meat?

Yes, ownership should have been verified by the slaughter house. Do horses have to be microchipped and/ or ear-tagged in Canada, Catherine? In most countries, especially in Europe, the microchip or ear-tag is compulsory. That means the owner can be verified on a computer in seconds. A mere declaration that one is the "owner" is not sufficient.
I found an official web site. It explains traceability of live stock and what is required. I suspect you will understand it better than I do. As far as I can tell there is no way of identifying an individual horse. There doesn't even seem to be much need to prove ownership. The big concern is about where the horse has been.$departm...trace14212

The ex-husband would have had the identification number for the location of the farm.  Gas is pretty cheap in Alberta and the ranch would have a horse trailer so transportation would not have cost much. Selling the horses for slaughter would have made some money. 

I hate to speculate why a man would kill his ex wife's horses. I assume he thought the horses were his ex wife's property.

The real problem is how lax the slaughterhouse was about proof of ownership and a total lack of identification of individual horses in Alberta and Canada in general.  

Anyone could take some horses and sell them. Also horses being sent into the food chain could come from anywhere. There is no real way to know which horse you really have.

I think the horse owner was too trusting and it was a costly mistake. She should have tried to move the horses as soon as the ranch owner died. It would have been a safer choice.
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From the article you cited, Catherine:
"At this time, equine have no single nationally or provincially recognized form of physical animal identification."

That is the problem. This could not have happened if tags or microchips were compulsory. They would immediately show who the legal "owner" is.

I agree with you that the real horse "owner" should have collected her horses more quickly, rather than leaving it to the last moment. However, the ex-husband of the deceased farm owner had no legal right to send the horses for slaughter.

If you get an update, please let us know what happened. Thank you.
Quote:"At this time, equine have no single nationally or provincially recognized form of physical animal identification."

That is the problem. This could not have happened if tags or microchips were compulsory. They would immediately show who the legal "owner" is.
I think this is a real problem for a number of reasons. 
Horses can be stolen and shipped anywhere and there is no way to track them.
There is no way to track horses if there is a disease outbreak.

There needs to be a proper registry/identification method.

Clearly Canada is very lax about some things.

This article has much the same information, but I think I can see why she didn't move the horses sooner.

After learning about the owner's death the horses were only left on the farm a little over two weeks. She was given to the end of the month and she did have to find another location. The horses had been safe on  the farm for 5 years. What the man did was illegal and I will try and find out how his case goes. It doesn't say when the horses were killed. Even if she had removed them right away, it might not have been soon enough.

I think the man did it for the money.

The horses may have been worth more the $800.00, but Wayne Jubb figured he could get away with this and gain $800.00.

If Kathy O'Reilly had thought there was a danger, I think she would have moved her horses. The danger was from someone who was willing to forge papers and do something criminal. She wouldn't have expected that.
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