Commentary

January 10, 2014

Garrison commander shares animal adoption decision

Dan McFarland
COL, MI Commanding, USAG Fort Huachuca

To our Community,
Recently, members of the community expressed their concern over our plans for the five horses and one burro at the Buffalo Corral. Having heard the concerns, we decided to extend the adoption deadline and have a veterinarian reexamine each animal.

In the process, our veterinarian recommended either adoption or euthanasia based on several factors — including the animals’ expected level of pain. I cannot authorize the adoption of any animal that is living in significant pain.

As you all know, this is not an exact science. Hence, I reviewed each animal’s assessment with our veterinarian and a veterinarian from the regional headquarters. I am very confident the recommendations are based on sound professional judgment.

Due to multiple health problems including significant degrees of lameness (generally 4/5), four of the five horses are not eligible for adoption. Euthanasia is recommended.

“Diablo,” while experiencing some degree of lameness, is adoptable with adequate pasture turn-out. “Speedy,” while incontinent and probably in the final stage of life, is adoptable.

Based on the above, a local horse shelter has already come forward to adopt Diablo and Speedy. We are working through the adoption process to include a full disclosure of the animals’ health and history.

As for the remaining animals, I am obligated to take the most humane course possible. Based on expected levels of pain, I believe euthanasia is the most humane course possible. We will ensure these animals, who served us so well, will receive the best treatment humanly possible in their final days.

Very respectfully.




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