Two recent killings and slaughters of horses in Florida are putting horse owners and trainers on alert for an underground market for horse meat.
“I would say it’s extremely upsetting,” says Denise Monopoli, trainer in western Palm Beach County.
The two slaughters occurred in recent weeks in Ocala and in Manatee County.
Richard Couto of the Animal Recovery Mission says demand for illegal horse meat is driving the killings.
“Right now, we’re buying horse meat undercover anywhere from 7 to 45 dollars per pound so you can imagine the money these guys and individuals are making off one horse alone it’s incredible,” Couto says.
“Every precaution a horse owner can take should be made putting up security lighting cameras, actually dogs are the largest deterrent for horse killers just putting a dog in your barn at night will deter a horse killer.”