Horses race for their lives


Photo by Getty Images

to win the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 5, 2018 in Louisville, Kentucky.

Malia Gutierrez

Is entertainment and money worth a horse’s life?

Horse racing is a sport where gamblers and horse owners make money from pushing horses’ physical capability through racing. Today, a majority of large countries, such as the US and Great Britain, have some sort of horse racing association, such as NTRA and BHA. Yet many people, including organizations like PETA and CFI, demand this activity stopped for good.

Sophomore Mollee Greene says ” Horse racing should not be a thing. Too many horses are getting injured and too much steroid use to make the horses go faster. Drugs and abuse are cruel ways to make money. People use horse racing as an excuse to gamble. Photo by: Malia Gutierrez

The amount of wealth obtained from the activity has become excessive. Horse owners and the audience have turned the races into a business in which they make overloading profits after a horse’s hard work. They make money by gambling on which horse they think has the best chance of winning. As sophomore Mollee Greene says, “I think its really stupid because the horses have no say in that their being shot up with steroids and whipped in order to race faster.” It’s completely unfair that after all the abuse the horses have endured, all they get is praise after winning a race, while owners are drowning in their own wealth.

These horses practically race to their death, and the numbers of deaths and injuries on the race track continue to increase. Being forced to run at such high speeds increases the chances of broken legs, a fatal injury for a horse. Running fast makes it easier for a horse to slip or fall. Also racing challenges the hearts ability causing heart explosion to be common.

As the jockeys race for the money, the horses are racing for their lives. As sophomore Ashley Payne says, ” I don’t like how the horses get abused and pumped

Sophomore Ashley Payne says ” I don’t like how the horses get abused and pumped with steroids before their races. I don’t like how they bet off horses to make money. I am mainly against the abuse. Its just not right.Horses don’t deserve this treatment, especially since they’re only like three years old.” Photo by: Mollee Greene

with steroids before their races.”Horses are also pushed to run at maximum speeds on poor, unsafe conditions, in some cases. Horses are forced to over work themselves, increasing the chances for fatal injuries. Horses shouldn’t be forced to play such an extreme sport. The most common injuries have to do with their legs and heart, which lead to the most deaths. It is said that the horses will run to their death, from heart explosion, if their jockey lets them by pushing them too hard.

In the US in 2018, 493 Thoroughbred horses have died from the sport. As the numbers continue to rise, more people become against the sport and more want it banned for good.

Not only is horse racing dangerous for the animal, but also the jockey. Not only are they the worst paid athletes, they face the most severe injuries. While racing at speeds up to forty mph, the chances of flying off the horse are high. Death and paralysis are awfully common among the jockeys. 

As human and animal deaths increase on the race track, more people are convinced that the sport should be banned. The topic has become a worldwide debate. Many don’t want to throw away the history of the activity, but once educated on how severe and common injury has become, more want to ban the sport.