Kill buyers, as we call them, frequent the local auction houses and are the ones who mainly purchase horses that run through. Those horses are then typically sorted and sent one of three directions:
- The horse is handle-able, healthy and has papers – this horse is lucky and will be resold back into the public at to dollar by the Kill buyer.
- The horse is lucky enough to get purchased from the Kill buyer by a rescuer or organization (thus feeding more money into the Kill buyer’s pocket and allowing him to purchase two to three times the stock off of what rescue just paid him for one horse.)
- The horse is shipped to slaughter in either Mexico or Canada, though I do believe the US has re-opened slaughter plants again lately.
I just happened to be driving towards Fort Collins on a Wednesday (sale day for the local horse auction). This was one of those occasions where my I have a feeling I need to be there instinct kicked up. I didn’t normally frequent the kill sales and sure didn’t like setting foot at this particular sale barn.. They had a bad taste in their mouths already for rescue. I’m pretty sure that was after a knife fight by two gals in their parking lot over the love of a Kill buyer..One of the girls ran a horse rescue and had managed to fall in love with the bastard. That’s another story for another time lol.
Back to my story. I had a strong feeling that there was a horse at that auction that was not supposed to be there and I had to get it out just HAD to. So I pull into the lot, look through all the pens and nope wasn’t getting a feeling from any of those poor souls. Just as I was getting ready to head out, here comes a truck and trailer. They offload the most adorable hafflinger I have ever seen and I knew it was him, he was not supposed to be there that day.
I could not get to the man fast enough, he had already checked the horse in to sale and was starting to walk away when I was able to pull him aside. Turns out he was the son of a famous trainer in our area who had passed away due to a brain aneurysm a couple years back. He told me that this horse had been trained to drive and ride, it was one his father had trained and that the woman who owned the horse didn’t want him anymore. This kid didn’t want him either and so he “figured he’d bring a good meat price with how fat the horse is and all”. BAHHHHH! WHAT are you kidding me right now???? I was pretty sure his father had to be rolling in his grave right then.
Calmly I said, well..I’ll just buy him from you instead, what do you want for him. We agree on $300. Awesome I say, so he swaggers on over to get the horse back out that he had just checked in..This is where shit starts to fly. Apparently ahem…you can’t do that according to their rules, god forbid they lose some money.
It was like auction house people came out of the wood works. A once desolate, good luck if you can find anyone to help you place was crawling with big ugly pissed off auction folk. I apologized and said ok I will go get a number and bid on him, my bad.
So I end up spending all of my day at the auction house waiting for this horse to run through. In the meantime, the owner manages to corner me, yell and threaten me in front of the entire place and his employees. Well.. that just pissed me off even more and the more pissed I am the more stubborn I get so there I sat. In the end, I got the horse and with a big fat “you’re still number one” (middle finger) to the owner, though I think he won this battle because I ended up paying like $700 for a horse that should have cost like $200 at this friggin auction. Whatever. Horse Wins. I win. We hauled ass home and never looked back. ❤
One of our earlier videos of Bubba the hafflinger: http://denkaisanctuary.blogspot.com/2010/01/bubba-haflinger.html
What do fuzzy slippers have to do with any of this? Kill buyers love fuzzy man slippers, they don’t seem to leave home without them. Just saying 😉