Since the USA has now closed all of the slaughter facilities that slaughtered horses, the practice is now booming in Canada and Mexico. Our USA horses are now being shipped across both north and south borders for slaughter in those countries. The federal government has passed laws to make it illegal to slaughter horses in the USA for human consumption. That in my opinion was a mile stone for the USA government, but they failed to take into account the possibility of shipping horses across the borders.
Canada is fairly competent when it comes to humanly killing a horse for meat but I am hearing horror stories out of Mexico. Mexico it seems is not killing the horses very quickly. Their method is to repeatedly stab the horse in the withers at the base of the neck to cut the spinal cord. This is not to kill the horse but to render the horse paralyzed. This takes several long minutes while the horses are repeatedly stabbed with a short knife. When the horse finally falls down their back legs are hooked to chains and they are hoisted up until they dangle off the ground – still alive. At that point their throats are cut so they can bleed to death. This method is the one that European meat buyers will buy horse meat. The animal has to be bled to death.
In my humble opinion we need to make it very expensive to export a horse outside of the USA through high export fees or expensive permits. That way it would take some of the monetary incentive out of exporting horses for slaughter. If it cost the companies that do this type of trafficking too much money in fees to swing a profit then the export of horses outside of the USA borders might end.