Thursday, March 11, 2010

Finally, a win for animals

Some trainers have been doping horses as mentioned in previous posts and the main argument besides whether it’s right or wrong boils down to the fact the horses have no say in the matter. Unlike baseball players who make a willing decision to cheat and can discontinue use at a given moment, animals do not have that same luxury. They are at the mercy of their trainers and owners.

One owner is paying the price for his mistreatment of horses. Ernie Paragallo, a thoroughbred breeder and owner, was convicted on 33 charges of animal cruelty Wednesday for starving and neglecting his horses on his New York farm. As many as 177 horses were mistreated. At least Paragallo is taking responsibility. After a raid on his farm, he said in a videotaped interview, ““I’m not denying it; if they want to lock me up, maybe they should. Whether it’s my fault or not, it happened and it’s my responsibility.”

How many times does an athlete caught with his hands in the cookie jar issue some veiled statement about being a good teammate wanting to get back on the field or not knowing what a trainer gave him. Knowing your body is the business of an athlete. It’s how they make their living so these excuses are pathetic and weak.

Paragallo now faces up to two years in prison and $33,000 in fines. He will be sentenced May 18th.

For the first time in a long time, the focus has been on the health of the horses. The next step is to include using PEDs as a form of mistreatment.

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