PMU (Pregnant Mares Urine) Industry
There are some very important topics of Interest & Concern is the
horse world, many of them dirty, dark secrets. The are kept secret because
many horse people really just don’t want to know or do not actively
seek out issues that may affect them or horses around the world.
The PMU topic is very near and dear to my heart because we rescued a
PMU colt. Elvis is our 3 ½ year old Percheron/Paint who is such
a gentle, sweet boy. To think that he could have gone to slaughter just
like many of the PMU babies makes me cringe. What a waste of life….
Here is a painting of Elvis done by Leslie Ann Webb, an artist who captures
rescued PMU babies on canvas.
A Quotation We All Should Remember
Whenever an animal is forced into the service of men,
every one of us must be concerned for any suffering it bears on that account.
No one of us may permit any preventable pain to be inflicted,
even though the responsibility for that pain is not ours.
No one may appease his conscience by thinking that he
would be interfering in something that does not concern him.
No one may shut his eyes and think the pain, which is
therefore not visible to him, is non-existent.
Over 6 million women are taking Premarin products for hormone replacement
therapy. But unfortunately many of the women or their doctors don’t
know about the by-products of these drugs—needless suffering and
death of mares and foals .
We support United Pegasus in their efforts to educate people as well
as finding homes for the mares and foals. Below is some information about
How United Pegasus got involved
In 1996, the United Pegasus Foundation followed some of the Thoroughbred
broodmares to Canada and found out they ended up at the PMU farms. We then
got involved in the rescuing of foals (most of the foals we buy at the
auctions and some are bought directly from the farmers) and in educating
the public on Premarin alternatives in order to try to help lessen the
demand of Premarin for sake of the foals, the mares and women's health.
What is Premarin?
What is a PMU farm? What is Premarin?
A PMU farm is a farm where the mares are bred, their urine collected so that
a hormone can be extracted to make a hormone replacement drug called Premarin
that eases the symptoms associated with menopause. The name Premarin comes
from PREganant MARes urINE.
There are three parts to the equation.
1. There are approximately 450 PMU farms in Canada and Northern US. The numbers
of foals produced every year are around 50,000-60,000 and 80-90% of them end
up going to slaughter because there are just too many to place and the horse
market is well saturated as it is. Also, Canada is quite a trip and most people
do not want to deal with the hassle.
2. There also is no real true humane guidelines for the care of the mares.
Most of the big farms treat the mares as part of the machinery that produces
the foals and thus the Premarin and thus the money. It is a business. So the
mares get the minimal and they are bred over and over. Their lives are not
3. A lot of research has been done in the medical community in recent years
that has concluded that Premarin and other hormone replacement therapies are
not healthy and have really bad health side effects including a higher risk
of cancer. For years, Premarin was the first thing prescribed to patients.
Nowadays, there are a lot of alternatives that are much healthier for women
In summary, the mares do not have a good life, too many foals are produced
with no future and Premarin is not healthy for women to take. Making these
facts known is slowly starting to encourage doctors to prescribe alternatives
before Premarin, encouraging the medical community to do more research and
come up with better alternatives and lessen the demand for Premarin and thus
lessen the numbers of foals born each year without a future.
How can you help?
HOW CAN YOU HELP? Educate yourself. Donate money to help us feed and care
for the foals. AND/or you can adopt a PMU foal today! Click on the "Available
Foals" link on our site http://www.unitedpegasus.com and
you will see a few of the foals we have available - but we have at least
twice as many at our farms. If you want to donate funds or resources, please
either email us email@example.com.
To listen to audio webcasts about this issue, click below and scroll down to Advocacy/Topics of Concern