06 - Hästhantering

Prevent your horse being Stolen

2005-10-10 21:58 #0 av: Rebecca

Help stop horse theft in Sweden

Horse theft has been taking place for many years ! 

Think it can't happen to you? Think again! Unfortunately horse (and other livestock) theft is on the rise. Why do people steal horses? The main reason is cash...the horse can quickly be sold at saleyards and the thief gets away scot-free. Thieves can be either 'professional' or impulsively decide to help themselves after spotting an easy target. Professional thieves usually have a horsey background and steal selectively. They drive around during the day selecting their targets, then return at night, cut wire fencing, load the horse in a float and are gone, their getaway having been carefully pre-planned. 

Thieves target horses on agistment or in paddocks that aren't well supervised or where the owner doesn't live on the property. Horses are fairly easy to dispose of. Thieves usually work in one area, then move on to another.

What happens to stolen horses? Unfortunately some do end up going cheaply for meat, but others are sold as riding mounts and often get re-sold several times which makes them difficult to trace. Thieves are only interested in a short-term profit and don't really care about where the horse ends up. Horses don't only get stolen from paddocks...some are leased to what seem like legitimate people and end up being sold on and unable to be traced. 

Identification
This is the number one deterrent for horse thieves...if your horse has some kind of visible brand, chances are he won't be targeted although some thieves will try to alter brands. Don't think your horse is unique and easily identifiable...he or she may be to you but would a non-horsey person be able to distinguish subtle differences between horses? You might own an unbranded 15hh bay mare with two white socks and a couple of leg scars...but so do thousands of others !

Freeze branding: Freeze branding has been used since the 1960's and the markings last the horse's lifetime. It's the process of using a super-cold branding iron to alter the colour pigment-producing cells. The result is that white hair, instead of coloured hair, grows at the brand site. Most standardbreds have freeze brands on the off-side of their necks, with the International Alpha Angle System, which incorporates info about the horse such as his year of birth and registration number.

Microchipping: This is an invisible means of identification, so won't act as much of a deterrent, but is still a means of legally identifying your horse and is also now accepted by most Swedish breed societies. The chip is encased in a glass bead the size of a grain of rice and implanted by a vet in the nuchal ligament of the horse's neck, which runs along the crest from the ears to the withers. Once it's been implanted, it's not visible to the naked eye. The chip contains information and can be read by a special scanner with records kept at a central base.

How to deter horse theft

• Keep a detailed file on your horse, which should include the ID chart, photos of your horse taken at different times of the year, proof of ownership (sale receipt or lease agreement) and any breed registration papers. Describe your horse so that a non-horsey person would have no difficulty identifying him. Include details such as scars and hair whorls (usually found on the forehead, neck and flank areas).
• Make sure your horse has some kind of ID brand or is at least microchipped.
• Network with your neighbours and keep an eye on each others' property and horses.
• Don't leave halters on horses as this makes it easier for thieves!
• Install security lighting around stable areas.
• A barking dog or other 'noisy' animals such as geese or peacocks on the property will deter would-be thieves and also alert you to any activity.
• Change your routines often, eg check your horse at different times during the day.
• Don't ever sell a horse and allow it to go off your property until cheques have cleared and if leasing, make sure you get a signed lease agreement and do a thorough background check on the potential lessee.
• Don't leave horse floats in or near your horse's paddock which could be used to transport your stolen horse!
• Post 'No Trespassing' signs on your property and fencing.
• Try to locate your paddock away from busy roads or plant some trees to block view.

Helpful web info.... Netposse is a US site but has some good info on how to go about recovering stolen horses.

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Av: rebecca

Datum för publicering

  • 2005-10-10

Anmäl
2005-10-13 00:31 #1 av: Linda

Ja det är så hemskt med så många stölder./Linda

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