I was shocked when I found out about PMU. These are farms where the horses soul purpose is being bred, then producing urine that is collected to be sold to medical companies to make a drug for menoapausal women.
It is shocking to read about how these animals are mistreated, abused and mis-handled. I really had no idea that this sort of "farming" existed. How cruel.
The pregnant mares are lined up, much like cord wood, side by side, in primitive metal frames, to restrict movement. They are given less water than required, so their urine is stronger. Evidently the concentrated urine contains higher levels of estrogen.
I have never, in my life, heard of anything like this and believe me, I will never use the drugs that these labs produce.
Wyeth-Ayerst Laboratories, the pharmaceutical giant, based in St. David, Pennsylvania, produces Premarin and is the sole contractor of all PMU farms. It seems that over 8 million women are using the drug Premarin, for their menopausal symptoms. I wonder how many, if any, realize the way their medicine is produced?
If you, or a woman that you know is taking the drug Premarin, suggest that she find an alternative treatment. Synthetic and vegetable-based alternatives to Premarin are widely available.
What happens with the thousands of foals produced from these PMU mares? Foals removed from the mare are sometimes fattened on feedlots and then sold for slaughter. The ones not sent to feedlots go straight to the meat auctions, or are sold to resale agents. A small number are sold by foal rescue operations to mostly U.S. rescue organizations.
I am appalled by this cruelty and just wanted to help bring the horses plight out into the public eye.
Thanks for looking, comments are welcome.
An intelligent deaf-mute is better than an ignorant person who can speak.
This is a very heated topic amongst horse people and has been an issue for several years now. If you are just now hearing about it, prepare yourself, there is far more shocking information regarding the cruelty these horses endure. Have you noticed that draft crosses have become more popular? that wasnt by chance, its becasue of their over population from the premarin production farms.
Your grandma is killing horses when she uses Premarin!
Another problem that it causes that is not as noticable and what a lot of people dont realize is that just like dogs and cats is the over population of unwanted horses. Walk through a monthly horse auction and look at what comes in. This is a VERY controversial subject in the equine industry about slaughter. Horse and Rider Magazine had a good article on it a few months ago that explained the good and bad reasons for having slaughter plants and the shipping of horse meat to Europe. Since shipping to Europe is no longer functioning the American horse heard of unwanted horses is on a drastic incline and creating an ugly problem. I cant explain even the slightest bit of it here but the PMU foals and mares do not help the situation. Here is a website that hope goes through that has several different views about the subject and some are even retired PMU mare owners. http://www.equisearch.com/special/blog/horsetalk/2006/12/slaughter-ban-is-dead-for-now.html
I have been to many horse auctions where people have brought in skeletons, not horses but walking anatomy displays and one time half the face was eaten away by cancer, the awfullest sight I have ever seen. I dont like to see horses go to slaughter anymore than the next person but I also do not like to see horses waste away in peoples backyards where if it had gone to slaughter it would no longer be suffering and out of its misery. The problem is not in the slaughter its self the problem is in the treatment of the horses once they are bought by the plants. Some people are actually starting to turn their starving horses loose in the dessert to die for those who live close enough because to them proper euthanasia is out of grasps of their minds for what ever reason. If they have no where else to go people will start tying them to the ASPCA doors overnight like unwanted dogs. Maybe there should be a seperate post about this.
There are currently less than 70 PMU ranches in production and they are being retained on 2 year contracts by Wyeth (as of 2005). This is a reduction form the original 400 in operation a few years ago.
PMU ranching is no different than any other form of livestock farming, you only get out of it what you put in. Crowded, filthy, sick pigs/cattle/fowl/horses fail to thrive, do not gain weight/produce milk/urine. They do however occupy space and eat food hence costing money.
The average farmer is servicing a million dollars (plus)in debt and is in possession of an agricultural degree, where is the logic in neglecting his meal ticket? Farming is the only occupation that I know of where the owner frequently works a second job to support his primary one. I cannot count the number of farmers I know who are truckers, electricians, plumbers.... They don't do this because they hate their way of life.
I live on a farm, my daughter is married to a farmer, my son is married to a farmer's daughter and will probably inherit her grandfather's farm. I am not just talking out the top of my head. Most of the farmers I know are neither mean or stupid.
A long time ago the PMU rancher's discovered that their foal crop was a valuable by product and that if they produced "Good" foals they were worth more money. There were ranches in Alberta producing registered Appaloosa foals, registered Quarter Horses, bucking horses and Sport horses which were sold at production sales, frequently for a lot of money.
I am not saying that there may not have some abuses but these operations were regulated to the ears, how much bedding the mares must have, how clean the stalls must be, how much stall room they must have, how many hours of turnout they should have/ week (with a premium being paid for more turnout time). Toad, my 3 y/o dun gelding comes from a PMU farm belonging to a relative of my best friend. After I bought him at a production sale I got to tour their barn (after they were shut down) and meet his mom as well as all of the horses they still had left. She knew them all by name and could quote their history. The barn was easy to clean, roomy and had lots of light. They had just spent half a million dollars raising the roof on the barn 2' to meet the expectations of the regulators only to be shut down a year later.
Where is the logic in putting up a 2 million dollar barn, filling it with hundreds of thousands of dollars of livestock then giving them substandard care?
I heard about that, & on www.petfinder.com there was a baby and they said " she-he was ripped away from there mother and i picked it up at auction" it was pitiful i was so tempted to get it then my moms angry face appeared in my head and stopped me anyways the horses are treated so bad they would be happier not bieng alive and that kills me!!!
Toad was weaned along with the rest of their herd at 5 months, he actually took being weaned easier than Polo my Arab who I brought home, still nursing as a yearling. Polo is now 2 and finally ready to be gelded. The picture was taken a couple of months after Toad was gelded.
TJRuff very intellectual and appropriate post about PMU farms. Most of these people on this forum are radical left wingers who don't have a clue about how the world REALLY works. Being a farmer you have dealt with the harsh realities of the government and society as a whole, hence such a worthy post. And being a horsewoman for over 38 years, I'd say that's a nice looking dun, I love his face markings.
Every year, doctors prescribe hormone replacement therapy (HRT)—also referred to as menopausal hormone therapy—to hundreds of thousands of women experiencing menopausal symptoms. One of the most widely prescribed drugs for HRT is made from animal waste. The drug is Premarin, an estrogen-therapy drug manufactured by Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, which also produces Prempro, an estrogen/progestin combination. Both drugs contain horse urine, specifically pregnant mare urine (PMU). Not only has this form of HRT proved to be dangerous to humans, but horses raised for their urine are kept confined and pregnant and their foals often end up in the slaughterhouse.