Remains of More Than 20 Horses Found in Florida

The remains of more than 20 horses apparently slaughtered for meat have been discovered near a roadside in Miami-Dade County, Florida.

This is the latest find since 2009, when investigators began probing illegal horse slaughter in the area. In all, authorities have investigated the remains of more than 50 horses in Miami-Dade and other Florida counties.

Richard Couto, founder of the Animal Rescue Mission (ARM), said a woman walking her dog on Jan. 10.

“She saw that the dog was munching on something and took a look,” Couto said.

Investigators from the ARM initially found the remains of between 20 and 30 horses in various stages of decay.

“Some of the remains have been there since the holidays; some are very fresh, like a couple of days,” Couto said.

He believes the bulk of the remains are from horses illegally slaughtered to provide meat during the holidays, while others might have been part of a religious ritual.

“We think they were part of a religious ceremony by the way their heads had been situated,” he said.

In the past, some butchered horses were identified as racing animals, but none of those discovered in this find bore identifying tattoos.

“But some skulls ere large so they (the horses) cold be Thoroughbreds,” Couto said. We just don’t know.”

In any case, investigators will continue processing the scene.

“We think there may be more (remains) to be found,” Couto said

About the Author

Pat Raia

Pat Raia is a veteran journalist who enjoys covering equine welfare, industry, and news. In her spare time, she enjoys riding her Tennessee Walking Horse, Sonny.

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