Our Euthanasia Policy
Go & Play Stable operates a Standardbred rehabilitation, retraining and adoption program based in Ontario, Canada. Each horse that is brought in to our facility program for a rehabilitation stint, is seen by a veterinarian to determine what (if any) are the most critical issues each horse is facing, what rehabilitation methods will be required, and a custom care plan is put in to place for each individual horse. It is Go & Play Stables’ goal to rehabilitate, retrain and re-home each horse.
Once each horse has been given a clean bill of health by the veterinarian, the horse is evaluated by our trainers to determine its suitability for exercise and riding. A custom training plan is then created for each horse, to help advance their skills as an equine partner, with the goal of finding each horse a suitable forever home.
In rare cases – such as dangerous temperament, chronic & severe pain conditions – adoption is not a suitable option for the horse, and Go & Play Stable may consider humanely euthanizing the animal.
GO & PLAY STABLE DOES NOT EMPLOY EUTHANASIA AS A METHOD OF POPULATION CONTROL.
There are several circumstances in which Go & Play Stable may consider euthanasia as a humane and responsible choice. Among the most common of these are:
- Incurable or progressive disease
- Incurable or transmissible disease
- Chronic or severe lameness
- Inoperable colic
- Severe debilitation in old age
- Severe traumatic injury
- Equines deemed to pose a serious danger to other animals, themselves, or the public
- Undue suffering for any reason
- Equines who are suffering physically, mentally, or emotionally on a severe or chronic basis
Euthanasia of adoptable animals in our program will be avoided whenever possible. This is accomplished by actively promoting to find these animals suitable forever homes. They will remain safely in our care, for as long as it takes, to find them homes. Euthanasia is to be considered only after reasonable and appropriate exploration of all other viable options. It is never a decision that is made without utmost consideration for what is best for the animals. The euthanasia process is initiated by the Adoption Coordinator, based on input and discussion from relevant sources: foster home, veterinarian, trainer, farrier, or others involved in the equine’s evaluation.
Once all reasonable efforts have been exhausted, the euthanasia is authorized through the Board of Directors (unless in an emergency situation, where-in the Adoption Coordinator can make the euthanasia call – they must present a veterinarian signed letter stating why the euthanasia was an emergency decision).
All animals will be given:
- A quiet, comfortable shelter to rest. Food and treats, as prescribed by staff.
- When appropriate, the equine will receive visits from staff & volunteers.
- When appropriate, staff will spend quality time with the animal. This may involve giving the animal extra grooming, a walk in nice grass, or other rewarding activity the animal may enjoy.
- Comfort measures such as pain control and sedation may be administered, as prescribed by staff or veterinarian.
The euthanasia process will be conducted in a manner humane and respectful to the animal. After euthanasia is completed, the animal will continue to be handled in an appropriate & respectful manner.
Euthanasia is often a highly emotional issue, yet it is important to address the situation from a practical standpoint. In all cases - whether dealing with an emergency situation, chronic pain condition, or a long-term illness – Go & Play Stable volunteers consult with a team of veterinarians, reviewing any medical information to fully understand the horse's current condition and future implications as well as discussing available treatment and care management options.