I feel sick to the stomach! I feel outraged! I am incensed having read Cameron Stewart’s article in The Australian of 30th August 2014. I know I cannot be the champion for all pensioned off animals and I have enough going on in my life without getting on the wrong side of the Police …. BUT …. how can The Victoria Police Mounted Branch possibly justify shooting four of their long serving horses?
Shortly after dawn on 2nd June 2014 at Attwood near Melbourne, The Victoria Police Mounted Branch shot four horses with distinguished Police service records. Hear That Bell; Rubicon (Rubi) who was once considered to be the bravest horse in the Mounted Branch; Gold Start, known as Goldie and Mambo were taken from their paddocks and destroyed in secret.
What is even more gutting is that 21 year old Goldie not only unceremoniously ended his police service that day but the dreams of two young children whose family had agreed to let Goldie live out his days on their farm. Mambo had also been found a home. 17 year old Rubi too and to someone he knew well. Tori Weir, who had been looking him at Attwood. Tori’s job at Attwood was a job she loved and she clearly had a deep affection for Rubi, hence the fact her family wanted him to live out his twilight years at their home. If I had been Tori, I would have created a stink and that is exactly what she and her Mother have done. The truth needed to come out.
The Victoria Police initially defended themselves by stating that all four horses were euthanased on ‘expert veterinary advice’, although it is known that only Hear That Bell was suffering from Cushing’s Disease. So what was wrong with the other three? It is rumoured that Rubi was constantly lame with navicular syndrome and Mambo lame with arthritis. Both treatable I believe. I have got arthritis. Perhaps they would like to get me up at dawn and shoot me? Maybe all four horses were destroyed because they were all suffering in one way or another, but the fact the shootings appear to have been carried out in such secrecy makes you wonder.
Finally on 03/09/2014 The Victoria Police issued an apology over the killing of horses. They have apologised for the way they handled the shooting of the four horses and say that they will review their procedures for retiring its horses. They have also admitted it was wrong not to have informed former employee Tori Weir that it planned to shoot her favourite horse Rubi rather than accept her offer to look after the horse in retirement. Shocking. Quite shocking. Too little to late.