Saturday, February 18, 2006

Charged for NOT Coggins testing?

This is a news story about a man that is accused of animal neglect. His horses were malnourished and one was dead. Starving horses is inexcusable, but what confused me is the charge that is being filed against the man for falure to test for EIA:

"Another charge has been filed against Bruce Teeter, who stands accused of
animal neglect. Marion County deputy prosecutor Kenford Carter added
the charge of failure to test for EIA, or Equine Infectious Anemia, to the
complaint against Teeter.
Horse owners are required to perform the test
once a year, Carter said. According to the USDA, Equine Infectious Anemia is a viral disease for which there is no vaccine and no cure. The disease is spread by horseflies. To ensure that an animal is not harboring the virus, a simple test is performed. The Coggins test checks for EIA antibodies in the horse's blood." -http://www.baxterbulletin.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060214/NEWS01/602140316/1002

Horse owners are required by who to perform the test? The article fails to say. I don't know of any horse owners that test all their horses yearly, nor do I know if any regulation that requires horses to all be tested yearly. Shots are done yearly, deworming bimonthly, shoeing every 6-8 weeks... but coggins tests?

EIA (Equine Infectious Anemia) is extremely rare and fatal. The only time that people will generally test is when they are buying a new horse, or when they are attending an event or show that requires current coggins. Travelling out-of-state generally requires a proof of current coggins (and current is considered 6 months, not 1 year).

Perhaps in Arkansas where EIA is more of a potential problem (more mosquitoes etc.) it's required. I would love to know, if anyone has any information on laws requiring coggins tests, please let me know.

Eww... horse testicles for dinner?

I came across this news story. It's about a Chinese restaurant that specializes in serving sexual organs of various animals-- including donkeys, dogs, and horses.
Here are quotes, I don't think I need to comment:

Situated in an elegantly restored house beside Beijing's West Lake, it is
China's first speciality penis restaurant.
Here, businessmen and government officials can sample the organs of yaks, donkeys, oxen and even seals. In fact, they have to, since they form part of every dish - except for those containing testicles.

Why would anyone want to eat this stuff? "In China, you are what you eat, and The Daily Telegraph's nutritionist, Zhu Yan, said the clients were mainly men eager to improve their yang, or virility."

You are what you eat? Does someone really want to become a.... oh, nevermind. It's pointless to argue about this.

Does it really work? "Mr Liu, the most regular customer, was uncertain but hopeful. 'I can't say I've noticed any difference yet,' he said."

I guess it's like our fad diets in a way. People here about something new or different, and lacking any type of evidence that it works, they try it and it fails.

The horses they are killing and eating are not American horses (American slaughtered horses generally end up in France, Belgium, and Japan) but rather are a type of chinese horse from the Xinjiang region. You can read about these "heavenly horses" here: http://www.chinaculture.org/gb/en_focus/2005-09/13/content_72757.htm or here: http://www.silkroadcn.com/xinjiang-horse.htm