Standardbreds Horse Lovers

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Standardbreds Horse Lovers

Share your stories about your life with your standardbred...we can all learn and grow from hearing about your experiences

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Latest Activity: Jun 19, 2014

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The 2014 Canada Standardbred Horse Day celebrations

Started by Standardbred Fan Club Jun 19, 2014.

Standardbred Swag? 2 Replies

Started by Ashley. Last reply by Ashley May 15, 2013.

Standardbred Recycling 4 Replies

Started by Shimmer E. Last reply by Lynn Feb 19, 2011.

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Comment by Debra McDaid on February 13, 2011 at 1:08pm
ps.  sorry for the spelling errors, I've been up all night, and my typing is horrible right now! lol
Comment by Debra McDaid on February 13, 2011 at 1:06pm

years later that the same guy dragged a horse when it was exhausted and laid down to the point where it's hide was mostly off, then beat it, then put a hose with running water down it's throat, then shot it in the head with a gun to finish it off that he was stopped.  Some women who tried to stop him and couldn't called the SPCA, and the police.  The only reason the police came... they then called the SPCA who did then come... was that their was a gun involved in city limits.  The fire chief did face a court appearance, he was stopped from owning horses, then the commission under pressure from the press finally did stop him from racing.  He had beatten many many horses in this two year period and many more in his lifetime.  Many people had complained to the commission, but he was to influential for the SPCA or the Commission and they did nothing leading up to this last act.  Only for the gun aspect he would still be in horses. 

The bottom line is that while not all stb horsepeople are cruel, their is an attitude that these horses are throwaways, that people can do what they want since no one is there to stop them.  Most stb horsepeople go into owning stbs and racing as betters who want the inside scoop... there is none... or becuase it is in the family... they don't really like horses... it is just the easy road... or becuase they don't want to work for a living and horses are an easy way out of a reg. job.  Most do not like horses, they will tell you this.

When I see abuse now I simply get my video camera out and let the person know I will film them, then report them with what I video... so now people do not abuse their horses in front of me.  I can't do anything more than this, and so I write in forums such as this one, in the hopes that the more people I tell about what really goes on in stb racing, that something can eventually be done for these horses.

I have no faith in the SPCA, or in the vets, and certianly not the Commission after a lifetime of trying to get their aid, and finding out they don't care except to punish me for trying to save these horses.  They are only interested in window dressing to keep org. like PETA off there backs.

I love all horses, but my heart long ago went out to these amazing horses called standardbreds.  They deserve all the best, and get so little instead from the people who's job it is to care for them and to safe guard them.

Anway, cheers,


Deb McDai

Tiocfaidh Ar La Stable


Comment by Debra McDaid on February 13, 2011 at 12:52pm


That is one reason they are put there, but at least in stbs, they do nothing to protect horses, but for window dressing.  Myself and others have called on truly disturbing cases, and we were only castigated for it.  Not openly I might add, but over a period of time.  What was worse, nothing was done, just our crediblity was questioned, or we were just sumerarily dismissed, or as in my case I always (the commission hated my family but they openly knew we were absolutely honest at all times) was told that I needed more proof, or that their 'hands were tied', etc.  Case in point, go to the track on any given day and you will see lame horses.  The vets will not usually do anything as they are the vets for the local area, and usually the horses are living in the local area, these vets want the money that these horsemen will pay.  If they pull the horse for being lame than the owner/trainer might not get them, plus they loose their drinking/hanging around friend.  So then you would say that the commission is there to make sure that if the vet does nothing that they are the final stop to a lame horse racing right?  Wrong.  They do nothing unless they have a grudge against the person who's horse it is, or they have so many complaints that they on the rare occassion do something.  As a rule no matter how lame the horse it is raced, when you here a horse has been scratched late, it is almost always the trainer who has scratched it... agian unless there is a grudge against the trainer/owner, then the vet or judge might act.

Also as to outright abuse, I have seen horses severly abused and when it is so bad that people complain (people in the stands or the odd horse person -- like me and a few others) the person is quietly asked to tone it down if they are favoured by the commission.  The Henry's are a good example of this, as they if a horse (they have trotters) runs they will beat the horse for it openly on the track... nothing is done about this by the powers that be.  Or as in the case of a mare that I know that raced in Sarnia whom Ted Jacobs beat unmersuffully, the complaintents were told that they just didn't understand horseracing, and that it was no big deal.. this was first by the vet, then the commission... that since there was no blood that they were worring for nothing.

As to the SPCA I and my family have called them, as have other horse people on some truely horrible cases.  There answer in the end was that the Commission was too powerful for them to tackel, and that the horses would in the end just be going to the Menonites or for slaughter, at least as race horses they were being housed and fed.  In one case my husband called on what was then the fire chief for the city of London when he beat for an hour a horse that would not go-- the horse was crippled, and exhausted, my husband came on the sceen on the end of the horror, was told what was happening, and he told the guy to stop, he then threatened my husband but did desist.  My husband called as to the wealfare of the horse, there was lots of witnesses that came forward when the SPCA actually finally showed up-- after a lot of discussion from my husband, then outright threats of the press being called.  When they came their answer was that the horse was okay.  The horse was clearly not okay by any humane standards.  They also told my husband that he was just not used to the way stbs are worked, that they weren't like other horses.  First that is a croc, secondly... my husband at that time had had stbs for almost 30 years... so I guess his experience should be enough as a driver, trainer, owner to know what was appropriate for stbs.  The horse was so exhausted that it died a few weeks later, likely directly from this day of abuse one vet admitted off the record.  The truth was that being a stb, being a race horse, and since this was an influential person in London, they did nothing.  Nor did the commission when they were told.  It wasn't until 2

Comment by Mary-Joe Figueira on February 12, 2011 at 4:35pm
I hate to put my nose into this as well, but I thought the racing commission was there to protect horses from this type of abuse? I guess nobody called the SPCA. As a guardian, I have heard some horrible stories. I guess it is not just STBs. Lots of horror stories out there.
Comment by Debra McDaid on February 12, 2011 at 12:09pm

the rest of my story...

the winter hit and he started to tie up, so we laid him off, then we had to work ont that, we intend to bring him back this spring.  We are breaking him to ride, and he is doing great, we hope that this will help him to get a better mouth and quite being a dead mouthed runaway... so far it seems to be working.  He is a dear little horse, and we love him.


I am glad that someone else is looking after these horses, and apreciates them as my family does.




Slan go foille,

Deb McDaid

Tiocfaidh Ar La Stable

Comment by Debra McDaid on February 12, 2011 at 12:04pm

Hi Mary-Joe,


It is a story-book type of life I have lived with my two stbs, there is never a dull moment with either.  Anyone that supports these horses in any fashion has my vote of confidence, so good on you for looking out for them with OSAS.

I have limited means, and have chosen these two to care for, but we give them the best of everything.  Over my lifetime I have fought for the rights of stbs, and have only a 'black eye' from other stb horsemen and the racing commision to show for it... but the fight goes on.


Tattoo was abused intentionally by earlier owners, neglected much like other stbs at the track by them as well.  And the last owner although he tried is disabled so that meant that he couldn't care for him the way he should.  Also this fello has a bad temper and gets frustrated easily, and the other fella that helped with Tattoo before we came along is just plain mean with horses, so Tattoo's life was hell.  It was the norm for Tattoo to be run into barns when they couldn't handle him, or hit in the face with bridles, to stand in a stall with months of manure in them, and to live with so many flies that you could not see his feed for them.  The water in the isle (we wash horses there at Cerro's) would back into his stall all year including winter.  His feet were not picked except when the farrier would come, and his equipment was so dirty that when we came along my husband had to wash everything for hours to get the dirt, skin and blood off from where it had worn Tattoo so badly that he has a scar on his shoulder.  The owner fed him, but the feed (although it was supposed to be specific to Tattoo's problems) was not what the horse needed, and he kept loosing weight, to the point that his body was emaciated.  He had no flesh left, and he was 'eating' his own muscel mass.  I was astounded to find out that this horse was racing when I first met Tattoo.  I did not want to become involved as I knew we could not afford another horse, and I could not get Tattoo removed as the vets here would not support such a move.  He was being fed and watered, and the rules for removal are very stringent.  So despite our better judgement my husband begain jogging Tattoo to help the owner out, and simply becuase we felt sorry for him being locked in the stall with all the flies we also started turning him out for the owner so that he could be outside for chunks of the day.  Then when you brought him back, we eneded up washing him, harnessed and unharnessed him... the abuse during these simple acts was horrible to us, then after we had washed him-- how do you turn him into a dirty stall?  How do you put filthy harness on him... so each thing snowballed, and then the flies??? He had a 'bad' shot of roboxin given to him, and he had a hole cut into his neck (by the vet) so when the flies were eating him to death, I brought my own flybate... this went on for two months until we were doind everthing with Tattoo.  Then we were tired of it all and said no more... I loved the little horse but it was all to much.. then someone put their nose in and said we had 'ruined' the horse... so we offered to buy him for 4000.  He was worth maybe 500, but the owner would take no less.. so we ended up owening him.  Our hope is/was that he can race to help pay for both horses' keep, we shall see.  When we got him into barn he could no longer pee, we did not know that his kidneys had shut down, or that his last blood test was so horrible that they told the owner that he would likely die unless something changed and very soon.  We were lucky and figured out what was wrong with his kidneys, and with his inablity to pee, then we worked on his health, something that we had started when we were looking after him for the previous owner.  A change in diet, giving him different things for his health issues, and good old fashioned care and some blankets turned him right around.  He made some money, then winter hit and he starte

Comment by Mary-Joe Figueira on February 11, 2011 at 9:40pm
That is some story Debra. I am a guardian for OSAS and I  am very impressed with STB. I think they are a lovely breed and have nice dispositions. If I had a place of my own I would get a couple of them.
Comment by Debra McDaid on February 11, 2011 at 5:09pm



I have two horses, both stbs.  I plan to race them, and then ride them (one- Che was bought expressly for this purpose, and the second-- Tattoo was bought to help pay for Che when he didn't make the track as a 3 year old.  Che is 4, and Tattoo 7.  Tattoo is currenly a race horse, his race name is Da Plane Boss, and Che is Tiocfaidh Ar La.  Che for those who know stbs breeding is a 'nephew' to the Great Gallo Blue Chip... I love both my horses, they are very different, but both are typical stbs, agile, smart, quick witted and savey... they are athletic and tough both menally and physically.  Both show ability as race horses, and a serious apptitude for eventing which is what our plans are when we stop racing... Tattoo is 15.3 1/2, and light at about 800 lbs... Che is the 'big fella' at 1200 lbs or more, and 16.2 1/2.  Tattoo is gelded (not my doing) and Che who I have had since he was a colt is a stud and will remain so...


We will get serious with Che this year if his feet hold up (he got into serious trouble as a 2 1/2 year old with colic and a toxic paddock), but he is looking good thanks to my farrier husband who has never given up on this colt.  Tattoo is project and was a severly abused horse, who nearly died the first 2 days we had him from kidney failure... ill health and a bleeding stomach ulcer, plus he is and was sever tie up horse... we love him anyway, and despite all this he got us our first win in 13 years at the track-- good old Tattoo...


So that is my two standies... I will add that I was a rider first.  I rode many different breeds and in many different types of equitation, and had some super horses... then I met my husband and after being with stbs for 10 years, I will never want any other type of horse.  When I came back to horses after 10 years, I chose stbs, to ride-- no question this was my breed of choice, not something I chose for lack of money, or whatever other people come to this dicision for-- for me they are not the poor man's TB as I once heard them described (not that this is not a valid reason if that is what floats your boat lol). This was an easy dicision for me after years of trying other breeds and liking them, but finding out that I love stbs more so... I love stbs for all their qualites... intellegence, toughness and druablity to name a few... they are beatiful, and the 'jug' head of the old days is just not true.  One look at Che tells you that they are sharp good looking horses, that can hold their heads in any company!  So for anyone who loves stbs I say good on you and cheers,


Slan go foille


deb mcdaid

Comment by Sarah Hirtle on March 12, 2010 at 8:32pm
Check out our website for the Peterborough Show! Hope to see you there!
Comment by KELLY MCLAUGHLIN on December 27, 2009 at 6:33pm
the ONTARIO STANDARDBRED SHOW SERIES will have 5 shows in 2010... dates to be confirmed but so far August 1st in Elora at Grand River Raceway, September 12 In London Ontario, Oxer Stables In Milton and OSAS to confirm dates... Peterboro area is leaning towards June 27

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