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WHEN A RACEHORSE LEAVES THE TRACK

* Some Thoroughbreds and Standardbreds become stock used to breed potential future winners

* A small number of horses will be rehomed and become pets or hacks for pony club, while others become showjumpers or dressage horses

* Others are sent to slaughter to become human or pet food

* In 2019 footage emerged of workers at the Meramist abattoir north of Brisbane mistreating horses sent there to be killed and processed

SHOCKWAVES AND REACTION

* The allegations of animal cruelty appalled the Australian public

* Racing industry bodies spoke out against the treatment

* In Queensland, the government launched an investigation of the accusations led by retired District Court judge Terry Martin SC

THE VERDICT

* That probe found the management of racehorses as a disposable commodity was unethical and not aligned with community expectations

* It also found the racing industry could not be held accountable for the lifelong welfare of retired horses once their careers were over

* It found that were was no adequate animal welfare monitoring at slaughterhouses

WHAT WILL CHANGE?

* Two industry bodies will set up a rehoming scheme

* But owners will need to make two genuine attempts to rehome the horse, and put it to the rehoming scheme

* If that fails, the horses can be killed or sent to an abattoir

* The Queensland government has been told to prioritise animal welfare

* Resting periods are recommended where horses are being brought from other states to be slaughtered in Queensland

* Cameras should be installed to capture what happens at “critical animal welfare points” and provided to state government officials

* The state government has left the door open to new agreements with abattoirs, or new laws

 
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