Quebec Horse Breeders In Limbo

Published: February 4, 2009 10:55 pm EST

The horse breeding industry in Quebec is in limbo while the private company that owns Quebec's four race tracks tries to sort out its finances


In 2006 the Quebec government transferred control of the race horse industry to the private company Attractions Hippiques, owned by Liberal senator Paul Massicotte.

The company is now under bankruptcy protection. There have been no races since the summer of 2008.

This means horse breeders are losing business.

"I'm scared to death of losing everything that I have; mainly what's going to happen to my horses... I don't know," said Monalisa Pagliericci, who has been in the horse breeding industry for 25 years.

In Pagliericci's case, she was supposed to sell 16 of her horses at an auction. The auction did not take place because of uncertainty in the industry.

Taking care of horses is expensive. Due to the lack of races or auctions, some horse breeders have sent their healthy horses to the slaughterhouse to reduce costs.

There is another alternative. Rose Gergely runs a refuge farm. She cares for 35 horses on site and has many others in foster homes.

She is also against the horse racing industry because she says the horses end up in pain no matter what.

"That's part of the racing industry," she said. "It's never changed. It's business as usual horses go to the slaughter whether it's good industry or bad industry."

In the meantime, breeders continue to care for their animals. They continue to feed and pace them in during the lull, waiting for a decision on the industry.

Carmen Perzow, owner of Oka Valley Standard Bred, puts the blame for the state of the industry squarely on the government.

"These mares, their babies are not going to be worth anything this year, the babies they had last year are not going to be worth anything, because the government made a deal that didn't work."

She wants the province to come up with a new way of handling the Quebec horse racing industry.

(CTV Montreal)



Quebec is probably one of the most "special" places in the world. And when I say "special", it's not in a positive way of things. That belt of yours is too loose. Too many chances given to the ones who do not deserve it. Too much corruption because of money. And you want to be a "country"? Start acting like good men and women and we'll talk about it again.
People like Mr. Massicotte do not deserve any second chance. Not being able to admit he's wrong, that he made the bad decisions, that he didn't put any effort into it. I heard a lot of things from horsemen that assisted the court with AH and I still can't believe what I heard.
Tis time to stop AH and bring a new blood in so things can roll once again. We don't need anyone like Massicotte right now - if you don't want to invest into helping the 3000 horsemen then get the hell out.

The Provincial Government must take control of the 4 race tracks in the Provincel NOW and place them in the hands of PRIVATE OWNERS when they are in a PROFIT POSITION (DO THIS BY GIVING EACH TRACK ENOUGH VLT's TO SUPPORT SAME)- together with wagering--do not do things because of friends with the party in POWERE - do same for the right reasons and only the RIGHT REASONS- GOOD LUCK.

Blaine Gregan,

When a company goes under the bankrupty protection, all the creditors are stopping to deliver goods or services. If it's a television network like they give as an example, the production companies will send their projects to other networks to have it simulcast.
Mrs the Judge, with all my respect, do you know that we cannot stop feeding our horses, colts and mares? Do you know that we can't leave a racing horse in its stall too long so that he doesn't lose his shape? Do you know that we can't go find another job because we have to keep grooming and feeding our animals... and also because for the last 20-25-30 even 40 years, we have done nothing else than beeing horsepeople??
If you think there are 3000 job openings for us, good... we will apply and do it because we want to keep working - maybe our life would become more "normal" with a 9 to 5 job... a regular salary every week and all week-ends off.

Find me a job and I'll let go - if not, please save my LIFE because it's all I know and all I've done all my life.