Slaughter Transport Rule to be Published

The equine industry should receive a final rule from the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) in the near future on regulations pertaining to the commercial transportation of horses to slaughter facilities. At press time, the rule had been passed by the U.S. Government's Office of Management and Budget and sent back to the USDA for final approval. The rule was expected to be published in a Federal Register document the week of Dec. 3, 2001 (Federal Register documents can be viewed at

The rule was proposed to establish minimum standards to ensure that horses are transported humanely when being transported to slaughter facilities. The proposed regulations cover food, water, and rest, among other things. The shipper or owner of the transportation will be responsible for overseeing that certain requirements are met during loading and transportation.

Additionally, the proposed regulations would prohibit commercial transportation of horses that are unfit for travel, the use of electric prods, and (after five years) the use of double-deck trailers for commercial transportation of horses to slaughtering facilities.

About the Author

Stephanie L. Church, Editor-in-Chief

Stephanie L. Church, Editor-in-Chief, received a B.A. in Journalism and Equestrian Studies from Averett College in Danville, Virginia. A Pony Club and 4-H graduate, her background is in eventing, and she is schooling her recently retired Thoroughbred racehorse, Happy, toward a career in that discipline. She also enjoys traveling, photography, cycling, and cooking in her free time.

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