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☛ Tommy Manion settles with NCHA 10-13-17

Posted by on Oct 13, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HORSE ABUSE, INDUSTRY NEWS, LAWSUITS & INDICTMENTS, REINING NEWS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 2 comments

TOMMY MANION SETTLES LAWSUIT WITH NCHA

By Glory Ann Kurtz
Oct. 13, 2017

Due to the fact that I’m in the middle of a move, yesterday I was dreading to go to the Fort Worth Court House to attend the Tommy Manion vs NCHA lawsuit; however, Manion evidently came to his senses and realized he was in the wrong – apologizing to the NCHA in an open letter posted on the NCHA website  to the members, following a meeting with his lawyer and the NCHA on Wednesday, Oct. 11.

The case involved him shooting an unruly stallion that he brought to a cutting in Whitesboro, Texas, that he repeatedly shot in the hip with a BB gun concealed under a jacket on his arm. However, a cell-phone video taken of the entire event was sent to the NCHA and circulated among NCHA members. When they sanctioned him for animal abuse and the non-compliance with the association’s recently implemented Zero Animal Abuse policy, Manion filed a lawsuit against the NCHA.

However, it didn’t take long for him to drop the lawsuit and apologize in an open letter to NCHA officials and members that was  published on the NCHA website, realizing the evidence was overwhelming that he had violated the newly created Zero Tolerance Animal Abuse Policy of the NCHA. Besides, that the more than likely “unwinable” lawsuit was becoming very costly.

But Manion didn’t get completely off the hook for his apology, as the the settlement included the following terms of the settlement:

1.    Suspension of NCHA membership for six months beginning August 9, 2017

2.    NCHA Membership Probation for one year thereafter

3.    Fine payable to NCHA to $10,000.00

4.    Letter to the NCHA membership (which was included in yesterday’s post)

The NCHA announced they are pleased with the settlement and remains committed to its Zero Tolerance policy.

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☛ Tommy Manion apologizes – court hearing cancelled 10-12-17

Posted by on Oct 12, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HORSE ABUSE, HORSE LAWSUITS, INDUSTRY NEWS, LAWSUITS & INDICTMENTS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

TOMMY MANION APOLOGIZES – COURT HEARING CANCELLED

By Glory Ann Kurtz
Oct. 12, 2017

In a one-page letter, entitled Exhibit A, to the NCHA, Tommy Manion, who had been suspended from the association for horse abuse, for shooting his unruly horse with a BB gun at a Whitesboro, Texas, NCHA-approved show, apologized. Manion said he was sorry that the method he subsequently used for  correcting his unruly horse caused such a controversy.

“I deeply regret that this event took place,” said Manion. “I’m committed to the NCHA and will endeavor to continue to conduct myself in a professional manner for the remainder of my career. We are pleased that this matter is resolved. and look forward to putting it behind us.”

Manion continued, “I join with the Association in continuing to take a strong stance against animal abuse and in protecting the animals we all love so dearly. I appreciate the NCHA’s continued commitment to completely eliminate abuse in our industry,”

As a result, the hearing scheduled for Friday, Oct. 13, at the Tom Vandergriff Civil Courts Building courthouse in Fort Worth, Texas, was cancelled.To date, the NCHA has not answered Manion’s apology on their website.

tommy manion apology

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☛ Ed Dufurrena in court again!

Posted by on Oct 10, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HORSE LAWSUITS, INDUSTRY NEWS, LAWSUITS & INDICTMENTS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 1 comment

LIGHTNING STRIKES DUFURRENA TWICE

ALLEGATIONS OF FRAUD RESURFACE IN FILED COURT DOCUMENTS BY EUGENE AND JANIE VOGEL

By Glory Ann Kurtz
Oct. 10, 2017

Ed Dufurrena from his website.

Edward L. Dufurrena, the owner of Dufurrena Cutting Horses LLC, Gainesville, Texas, is headed back to court in yet another civil lawsuit.The latest lawsuit filed against Dufurrena is entitled Donald Eugene Vogel and Janie S. Vogel vs Edward L. Dufurrena (CV17-00588). The lawsuit was filed in The State of Texas, County of Cooke, 235th District Court on Oct. 2, 2017 at 11:58 a.m. by the Vogels’ attorney Lisa C. Bennett of Adams, Bennett, Duncan & Henley, located at 100 East Broadway, Gainesville, Texas. For the record, the Vogels are the Plaintiffs and Edward L. Dufurrena is the Defendant. The Vogels are senior citizens, who were 66 at the time of the agreement.

As you may remember in a previous article regarding Dufurrena, included a seven-day trial held in April of this year, in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, in Sherman, Texas, to determine who was guilty for a HERDA positive foal, sired by Auspicious Cat, that was born to Canadians Shawn, Lisa and Lauren Minshall’s mare. The eight-member jury’s determined that Edward and Shona Dufurrena, Gainesville, Texas, who headed up the Dos Cats Partners, the owners of Auspicious Cat, were 60 percent responsible for their foal being born with full-blown HERDA, the Minshalls were 30 percent responsible and David Hartman, DVM’s Hartman Equine Reproduction Center, P.A., the veterinarian that collected the semen and shipped it to the Minshalls, was 10 percent responsible.

The suit alleged advertising fraud. Dufurrena, the Defendant, willfully and knowingly advertised his stallion Auspicious Cat, as HERDA negative (HN) when court documents revealed the stallion carried the (HN) designation on his AQHA registration papers, meaning he carried the HERDA gene, which can result in a disease that make a horse lose their skin, leaving huge sores on their body, making them unridable and they usually have to be put down. This court case resulted in out-of-court settlements and assignments of responsibility by a jury trial which I covered in length.  Essentially, the Minshalls bred a mare to Auspicious Cat that produced a HERDA foal.

Click on link below for copy of HERDA trial>>

http://allaboutcutting.net/?p=10092

 

DOS CAT PARTNERS RECENT LAWSUIT
In the most recent lawsuit filed by the Vogels, I reviewed Legal documents that indicate the subject of the lawsuit is a Partnership named Dos Cat Partners (herein after referred to as the  “Partnership”.  The Partnership was formed by written agreement on March 29, 2011 by and between Donald Eugene and Janie Vogel and Edward L. Dufurrena.  The Vogel’s invested $105,000 in the Partnership for a 49 pecent share with 51 percent of the Partnership belonging to Ed Dufurrena, also the defendant in this case.

The purpose of the Partnership was operating a business for profit. The principal business of the Partnership is to promote cutting horses through training, showing, breeding and sales for profit. The partnership was, at all times mentioned in this petition, in operation.

Court documents state that at the beginning, the Partnership owned four horses: Auspicious Cat, Ozzum Man, Ozzum Cat and Whata Sneaky Cat, as well as three embryos: one from Miss Ella Ray sired by Auspicious Cat, one from Miss Ella Ray sired by Metallic Cat and one out of Hickory Wheel sired by Auspicious Cat. Presently the horses remaining in the Partnership are the stallion Auspicious Cat, Crezy Train and Stevie Rey Von, also a stallion.  Stevie is the embryo of Miss Ella Rey sired by Metallic Cat.

2-Stevie Rey Von

3-Auspicious Cat

The terms of the Partnership were as follows: (1) all expenses are shared proportionately by owners according to ownership interest of each partner; (2) all earnings from any source are shared proportionately according to the ownership interests of each partner and (3) Ed Dufurrena, the Defendant, was to manage the horses.

4-copy of new lawsuit

 

2-PARTNERSHIP HORSE VALUES
Stevie Rey Von, considered as a “very valuable horse,” is owned by the Partnership and is an embryo offspring of Miss Ella Rey sired by Metallic Cat as indicated in the Partnership Agreement. In December 2015, Stevie Rey Von, ridden by Dufurrena, won the NCHA Cutting Horse Futurity for 3-year-olds. The winnings were substantial, consisting of $341,570. According to court papers, Dufurrena, the Defendant, collected all of the winnings, never sharing with the Vogels for their 49 percent. However, the win made the horse a substantial asset for the Partnership.

As of June 10, 2017, Stevie Rey Von has a total lifetime NCHA earnings of $341,570. Stevie Rey Von is currently advertised by Dufurrena (Defendant), standing at stud for a breeding fee of $4,000 plus a $650 chute fee.  Auspicious Cat is the second most valuable horse owned by the Partnership and stands at stud for $3,650 per breeding.

FAILURE TO PAY
Filed court documents state, ”After the large winnings, Dufurrena, the Defendant, did not pay the Vogels (Plaintiffs) their proportionate share. The Vogels requested that they be paid according to the partnership agreement; however, Dufurrena responded to the Plaintiff’s) by sending them self-generated invoices. The Vogels examined the invoices containing expense,  questioning the expenses and requesting that the expenses be substantiated. Dufurrena never complied and to date, Dufurrena has not substantiated those questioned expenses.

INSPECT THE PARTNERSHIP RECORDS
The lawsuit went on to say that the Plaintiff’s have requested to see the records of the Partnership. Beginning, January 2016, the Vogels contacted Dufurrena, advising him that they wanted to see the bills. Again, Dufurrena failed to comply. Thereafter, week after week and continuing through 2017, the Vogels said they requested documentation from Dufurrena and he always had a reason for not complying. They state that To date, Dufurrena has not complied.  In the suit, the Vogels also demand they should be allowed to inspect all the records of the Partnership.

GROSS MISREPRESENTATION OF MATERIAL FACTS
A. Number of breedings: A number of breedings of Stevie Ray Von were misrepresented by Dufurrena to the Vogels. Dufurrena represented to the Vogels that Stevie Rey Von had 40 breeding’s in 2016 (foals would be born in 2017);however, the Vogels recently learned that Dufurrena had permitted at least 100 breedings to Stevie Rey Von during that period. (This information is not yet available from the AQHA; however, 40 breedings would be worth $160,000, while 100 breedings would be worth $400,000, a different of $240,000.) The Vogels said in the court documents that they anticipate that the same will be true for 2015 and 2017 for Stevie Rey Von, as well as for Auspicious Cat. AQHA does not release the number of breedings by a stallion in given year; however, they do release the number of foals registered from those breedings.
Click for number of foals registered in 2016>>

B. Condition of Auspicious Cat: Dufurrena represented to the Vogels that Auspicious Cat had no physical defects.  However, since then the Plaintiff’s have learned that the horse is a cryptorchid (only has one testicle), a genetic condition which is very serious for a breeding sire and also has the genetic condition HERDA H/N, meaning he carries the HERDA gene and could pass it on. Both of these conditions greatly affect the horse’s value.

C. Expenses and Income: The Vogels claim that Dufurrena has misrepresented the expenses of the Partnership. They claim that Dufurrena has claimed expenses for things that were not incurred, as well as expenses that were inflated. They also claim that Dufurrena has claimed expenses that were not authorized and expenses that were excessive.  The Vogels previously questioned the expenses and requested that the expenses be substantiated; however,  Dufurrena provided little or no substantiation documents for the expenses.

D. Horse Ownership Papers: Court documents state that Dufurrena did not title the Partnership horses in the name of the Partnership nor did he include the name of the Vogels on the ownership papers, with the exception or Auspicious Cat. Dufurrena titled Stevie Rey Von’s ownership papers originally in the name of his son  (who showed the horse and won money in major NCHA events) and then in his name only – never in the name of the partnership. He also titled Crezy Train’s ownership papers in the name of his son and never informed the Vogels of his actions.

E. Representation to the Public: Court papers also state that Dufurrena has misrepresented the ownership of the horses not only to the Vogels, but also the public – namely the National Cutting Horse Association. Unknown to the Vogels at the time, Dufurrena showed Stevie Rey Von at the 2015 National Cutting Horse Association Futurity and represented himself as the sole owner, which if proven, is a serious violation of the rules and regulations of the National Cutting Horse Association. Also, advertisements for the horse indicated that Ed Dufurrena was the sole owner.

F. Conversion.  If the foregoing facts above are proven to be true,Dufurrena has committed conversion against the Plaintiffs.  Dufurrena has sold Partnership property without the right to do so  and against the benefit of the Plaintiffs.  Dufurrena has sold Partnership property without paying the Vogels their proportionate share or without their permission, including but not limited to: Dufurrena has received money for breedings from Stevie Rey Von, and has not paid to the Partnership or Plaintiff’s proportionate share. Dufurrena has received prize winnings that he has not paid to the Partnership or paid to the Plaintiff’s proportionate share. Dufurrena has invoiced and been paid for expenses that have not been incurred or were not for the benefit of the Partnership property. Those amounts due the Vogels have reached hundreds of thousands of dollars.

G. Fraud.  The Vogels have hired an attorney to assist them in enforcing their rights under the Partnership Agreement.  According to court documents, Dufurrena provided some documentation to the Vogels, through his attorneys and as such, the Vogels have  discovered in the documents that Dufurrena has committed forgeries.  If such action by Dufurrena is true, that would  constitute fraud.

H. Breach of Fiduciary Duty of Loyalty.  Based on the foregoing facts, Dufurrena has breached the duty of loyalty owed to the Vogels under the law and under the terms of the Partnership. He has used Partnership property for his own personal gain and to the deprivation of the Plaintiffs. The Vogels  claim Dufurrena has billed expenses to them  wrongfully, including expenses that never existed, were improperly applied or grossly inflated. The Vogels also claim that Dufurrena improperly titled Partnership property in his own name.

I. Dissolution of Property.  The Vogels seek a dissolution of the Partnership, and demand an accounting from Dufurrena. The Plaintiffs are requesting to be paid all monies due to them from Dufurrena. The Plaintiffs also demand that a receiver be appointed for the sale of all Partnership property including, but not limited to, Stevie Rey Von.

J. Fraud.  Based on the foregoing facts set out above, if proven to be true, Dufurrena has committed fraud on the Vogels and according to the court documents, to date, he has continued the fraud against the Vogels.

Risk Assessment
At my request, the following Risk Assessment/Risk Analysis was performed by Richard E. “Rick” Dennis in this matter.  Rick is a former Professional Drug Enforcement Agent and a Law Enforcement Officer.  Since 1986, Rick has been involved in the private security industry as an entrepreneur and currently is the Managing Member of the Wind River Company LLC.

Rick’s company specializes in providing Private Security, Personal Protection, Security Consultation, as well as Employee Drug and Alcohol Testing, and Risk Management Services to the private sector including Risk Assessment and Risk Analysis. Rick has a total of 47 years experience in his fields of representation.

In addition to the above, Rick is the author of two books: THE AMERICAN HORSE INDUSTRY, Avoiding The Pitfalls as well as CROSS TRAINING 101, Reining, Cutting, Cowhorse, a freelance writer and contributing writer to allaboutcutting.com.

In Rick’s opinion, “If all of the allegations included in this petition are proven true, it may produce a domino effect for the Defendants.  It will not only produce a civil lawsuit, as it already has, but it may also invoke a litany of criminal investigations into this matter as well.  These crimes could include: 1) Fraud, 2) Forgery, 3) Theft, 4) Violations of the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices act which pays out three times the damage award if proven true, 5) taking advantage of the elderly, and 6) mail fraud — to name a few. However; as in all cases, each individual is innocent until proven guilty. Therefore, only law enforcement authorities, after a careful review, will be able to determine if criminal actions are warranted in this matter.

However, the Vogels are not the only ones that may be impacted by Dufurrena’s  actions. Again if proven true, the American Quarter Horse Association may be impacted by the misrepresentation of ownership of a specific horse, as well as all of the data in their cumulative records. The National Cutting Horse Association may certainly be impacted by the improper disbursement of horse earnings as well asthe data in the horse and rider earnings that they keep and publish. For example, accompanying a disbursement of funds above $600, the NCHA is required by IRS law to disburse a 1099 to the winner.

If fraud in this matter is proven true, the NCHA earnings checks should have been disbursed to Dos Cat Partners, who in turn should have disbursed a proportionate share of the earnings to the Vogels, along with an appropriate 1099. In this case, the NCHA may have to amend previously filed State or Federal Tax returns which cost money and, in turn, may affect the Vogel’s tax filings in this matter – adding further damages to them by Dufurrena’s actions.

Then there are also rule violations (where warranted) to take into account for either/and/or the American Quarter Horse Association and the National Cutting Horse Association. Overall, this legal filing is going to produce a lot of paper slinging on both sides and a big headache for the AQHA and the NCHA.

Note: a First Amended Petition was filed in court today (Monday, Oct. 9), by the Vogel’s attorney at 3:04 p.m. correcting a statement in the original filed petition which states “Stevie Rey Von won the American Cutting Horse Association Futurity” with a correction stating “Stevie Rey Von won the National Cutting Horse Association 2015 Futurity.”

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☛ From the Editor 9-26–17

Posted by on Sep 26, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, FROM THE EDITOR, HORSE ABUSE, HORSE HEALTH, HORSE NEWS, INDUSTRY NEWS, LAWSUITS & INDICTMENTS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 1 comment

FROM THE EDITOR

By Glory Ann Kurtz

Sept. 26, 2017

I always seem to pick the worst times to be away. The past few months have been crazy. But I have sold my horse facility and I and my animal menagerie of animals including Cougarand, a 31-year-old champagne stallion sired by Peppy San Badger, out of an own daughter of Doc Bar, and my little dog Billie, will be moving into my new home in Grandview, Texas, with my daughter.

After 37 years in one place, it was a huge move, as well as being rather heart-wrenching. My Mother and my husband, Bob, both died in that house and it had many memories of buying and selling hundreds of horses, as well as raising hundreds of babies, as well as a little bit of showing.

Its also stressful to decide what to take and what not to take. And the “what-nots” need to be more things than you ever dreamed of getting rid of. But a statement I heard during my move helped: “If you’re not going to be using it, get rid of it because your kids don’t want it.” Good advice and very true I’m sure!

It seemed my most valuable possessions were horse magazines and horse sale catalogs: the Quarter Horse Journal, The Cutting Horse Chatter and Quarter Hsorse News.  I had some of them back into the 1970s and I finally got the nerve to throw some of them away, most interestingly enough, the more recent ones.

I gave my Chatters to Gala Nettles, as she is doing some historical articles on the National Cutting Horse Association. I advertised that I would give away my Quarter Horse Journals, dating back into the 1970s and had one phone call – a woman who wondered if I had the November 1973 issue of the Quarter House Journal as there was an article about her horse in it, I did have it and sent it to her free of charge. That’’s the only call I got. I guess I should have charged for them and I’d have had more takers! That’s usually the case.

But I realized that the summer was about gone. My daughter and I took a trip to North Dakota for my 60th class reunion, which was a blast.  We have them every five years and I don’t miss them – but they miss Bob as he brought that Pennsylvania home brew that his friend Bobby George made, and he enjoyed them even more than I did and it was my reunion!  I’m sorry to say that Bobby George also passed away a couple of months ago.

Also, I had only spent a couple of weeks in the mountains of Colorado. so I dumped my furniture and boxes, as well as Cougarand, off with my daughter to care for and headed to Colorado for what was left of the summer. Only days later, he got cast in his stall. She got the help of one of her employees, they tipped him over and got him up. When he started chasing the help’s dog, they knew he was OK.

Today, the aspens are all turning red and yellow, the morning and evening clouds are lowering themselves into our valley, it is freezing some at night and there is snow on the mountains. In fact, as I speak, it is raining now after a gorgeous day. I Guess I better think about coming back to Texas for the winter!

I’m still planning on continuing my site: www.allaboutcutting.com to keep you updated on interesting things going on in the horse industry. I know some of you will love that – while others will hate it; however, guys and gals, that’s life and I’m going to enjoy it to the fullest!

I have to thank Rick Dennis for helping me keep up my site by writing many interesting articles and forwarding news to me. If you haven’t read the articles on cell phones – you need to. It will enlighten you about the item that EVERYONE has to have. The articles give valuable information on the cell phones themselves, as well as the carriers. Also, as a risk analyst, he has written several articles about the horse industry and kept me up to date.

Following are a couple of articles of interest in the horse world:

TOMMY MANION SUES NCHA FOR SUSPENSION AND FINE

The latest news in the cutting world, is that Tommy Manion has sued the NCHA for suspending him for two years, putting him on probation, fining him $15,000, and also giving him a five-year probationary period to be served after his suspension, for violating the NCHA’s Zero Tolerance Policy. At an NCHA cutting in July, Manion was videoed when he shot his stallion with a BB gun “to calm him down from his aggressive and anti-social actions.”

The stallion, Smooth Maximus is a full brother to Million Dollar sire Smooth As A Cat. He said he did it because the stallion was “kicking at people and horses, trying to bite people and horses, rearing up and trying to charge at other horses, Manion said he couldn’t approach the stallion safely, so he shot him with a BB gun.” The incident was all filmed on a cell phone and sent to the NCHA,

I reported how the NCHA Executive Committee, as well as Grievance Committee found that he was guilty of the association’s Zero Tolerance Policy.

However, the latest is that in his lawsuit, he is asking that the NCHA’s disciplinary action be voided and that he receive more than $1 million in monetary relief.He has also asked the judge to issue a temporary injunction to block the NCHA from enforcing the action while the civil case is pending.

The NCHA contends that it  has a right to suspend Manion or any other member for the association’s rule violations.

When I get back to Fort Worth (after a quick jaunt to Nebraska to attend a friend’s wedding, who was a former employee of mine at Quarter Horse News), I will make a mad dash to the Tarrant County Courthouse and get the court documents and publish them.

I usually don’t report hear-say; however I did hear that the SPCA checked out the situation and let Manion off the hook if he gelded the stallion, which he did. If they would have charged him, that would have been a felony and he could have faced a severe financial penalty as well as serve some time in jail.  Also, I heard the stallion was owned by a syndicate and that the syndicate members are upset and thinking of suing Manion as they didn’t know anything about the incident or the gelding the stallion. I’ll also check that out when I get home,

ANIMAL ABUSERS COULD HAVE TO REGISTER AS SEX OFFENDERS

On a side note about cruelty to animals, On Tucker Carlson’s TV show, he reported that several jurisdictions may soon consider motions to create registries for animal abuser the same way sex offenders are documented, He said Tennessee is currently the only state that has such a registry but such legislation has been passed in Cook County, Ill, which is home to Chicago. Also Massachusetts and Arizona are also considering legislation to create such lists.

Carlson said that “animals are helpless in the hands of humans and that it is up to us to treat them fairly, Your relationship with them is governed only by empathy and if you hurt an animal, it says a lot about how you treat people.”

That statement has been proven by the FBI, as I previously wrote an article about that.Those kids who torture and kill animals are more likely to do the same to people later in life.

To wrap this up, I had a telephone call from a Senior Editor of the Star Telegram who are covering the Manion incident and he told me it has morphed into an “animal abuse” article. He wanted to interview me about that; however, I had such poor phone coverage that I told him that would be impossible until I get home.

I should be home next week and if I can find my computer and printer, I will continue to try to give you more ”horsey” news!

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☛ Kountz pleads guilty for animal cruelty 8-18-17

Posted by on Aug 18, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HORSE ABUSE, HORSE LAWSUITS, LAWSUITS & INDICTMENTS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

DAYLE KOUNTZ  PLEADS GUILTY FOR ANIMAL CRUELTY CASE

 

OWNER OF BOZEMAN, MONTANA’S  KOUNTZ ARENA CHANGES PLEA

Aug. 18, 2017

Dayle Kountz, right, owner of Kountz Arena, appearing in Gallatin County Court. Photo by Bozeman Chronicle.

According to a Aug. 17 article in the Bozeman Chronicle, Dayle Kountz, the owner of Kountz Arena in Bozeman, Montana, is set to change his plea of animal cruelty to a felony  charge of animal cruelty for failing to provide appropriate medical care for his stallion Young Doc Bar. Kountz and his lawyer are deciding whether he will plead guilty or no contest to the charge but he will be entering a plea next Wednesday, Aug. 23, in Gallatin County District Court before Butte-Silver Bow Judge Brad Newman, whois overseeing the case.

The plea comes as part of an agreement with the Gallatin County Attorney’s Office, which will dismiss the additional counts of aggravated animal cruelty and felony animal cruelty that Kountz has been charged with. The state will recommend Kountz receive a two-year suspended sentence to the Montana Department of Corrections and serve no jail time. However, his lawyer said they will be asking for a deferred sentence.

Kountz, who had previously been convicted of a misdemeanor cruelty to animals in Gallatin County in 1999, was charged at a March 2015 horse show at his Kountz Arena in Bozeman  when it was reported that a horse was missing a foot, lying in his own feces and suffering in a small stall. The Gallatin County Sheriff’s Office responded, finding the horse named Young Doc Bar – as well as a calf suffering from seizures

Kountz told investigators that the horse was injured in December 2014 when the horse accidentally got his leg caught in a corral panel. He said he sought medical advice and followed treatment recommended by a vet. The animals were euthanized and the sheriff’s office closed the case with a warning; however, several witnesses who were at the arena on the day of the horse show came forward and provided photographs and information the sheriffs officer further investigation.

Therefore, about two months after the show, the county attorney’s office charged Kountz, who sought to have his upcoming trial moved out of Gallatin County, claiming that “inflammatory” editorial and social media attention to the case made it so Kountz would not receive a fair trial. Several news outlets, multiple TV stations, a Facebook page called “Justice for Young Doc Bar” was created and a petition Change.org lobbied for Kountz to be prosecuted; however, Judge Newman denied the request, saying that while news and social media accounts of the case had been “extensive,” it didn’t show widespread community prejudice against Kountz.

However, a felony charge is a very serious crime. A person who commits a felony, upon conviction in a court of law, is known as a convicted felon or a convict. In a move seen as a big win for animal rights activists, the FBI has added animal cruelty to its list of Class A felonies, alongside homicide and arson.

Cases of animal cruelty fall into four categories — neglect; intentional abuse and torture; organized abuse, such as cock and dog fighting; and sexual abuse of animals — and the FBi is now monitoring them as it does other serious crimes. Also, starting Jan. 1, 2016, data is being entered into the National Incident-Based Reporting System or NIBRS, the public database the FBI uses to keep a record of national crimes.

It is felt that the FBI’s decision will not only be a way to stop cases of animal abuse but also can help to identify people who might commit violent acts. According to the Christian Science Monitor, psychological studies show that nearly 70 percent of violent criminals began by abusing animals and keeping statistics on such cases can help law enforcement track down high-risk demographics and areas.

In some states, those committing multiple felonies can be double billed or double-sentenced and can receive 20-40 years in prison.

Some of the information in this article came from the Bozeman Chronicle.

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☛ Are bad breeding practices animal abuse? 5-26-17

Posted by on May 26, 2017 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HORSE HEALTH, HORSE LAWSUITS, INDUSTRY NEWS, LAWSUITS & INDICTMENTS, MAJOR EVENTS, REINING NEWS, RICK'S CORNER, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 11 comments

BAD BREEDING PRACTICES

 

IS THIS ANIMAL ABUSE?

 

By Rick Dennis
May 26, 2017

As an AQHA breeder, my requirements are to breed an animal that is genetically correct with excellent conformation, the right temperament, enough athleticism to perform multiple events, enough cow instinct to perform in cow horse or cutting, free of genetic defects and with enough bone and stamina to withstand the rigors of the show pen for many years.

 

My article entitled, “AQHA Genetic Pool Shrinks,” dated Jan. 10, 2015, delineated an ongoing problem within the Quarter Horse industry in that the genetic pool is shrinking. Undesirable genetic traits and diseases are being passed from generation to generation. The following articles were the proto types of my article that would later play out in a courtroom in Texas in 2017 involving HERDA.

 

ARTICLE EXCERPTS:
Recent articles in the American Quarter Horse Journal entitled “The Changing Landscape of Quarter Horse Genetics, Part 1 and Part 2,” really caught my eye because of two reasons: 1) I’m an American Quarter Horse breeder specializing in multiple-event reined cow horses and 2) I’m a Life Member of AQHA.

Part 1’s first paragraph essentially sets the stage for the present state of the breed in that it’s becoming more and more inbred, stating, “Talk to an equine geneticist long enough and you are bound to hear two assertions made about the American Quarter Horse breed that sound like opposites: First, it is one of the most genetically diverse equine breeds in the world and second, it’s becoming increasingly inbred.

 

The second and third paragraphs of Part 1 outline the history of the breed and a factor causing this shrinking of genetics, stating, “Beginning in colonial America, the breed began from a diverse genetic base of largely Thoroughbred and Spanish blood that was added to and developed for roughly 200 years, focusing on producing quickness and durability.

 

But fast-forward to the modern era of specialized American Quarter Horse performers, especially at the highest levels, and you find specialization in the horse-breeding herd too: specific groups of individual classes of horses used to produce those top performers. If you’re breeding for a specific category of horse (i.e.) reining, cutting, cow horse, etc., the gene pool is further narrowed within this subgroup.

 

That suggests there are narrowed gene pools in those subgroups and now a genetic study clearly shows it. A research team from the University of Minnesota has published its findings in an issue of the Journal of Heredity, “The American Quarter Horse: Population structure and relationship to the Thoroughbred.” The 2012-2013 study was partially funded by the American Quarter Horse Foundation.

 

“In the pedigree analysis, some groups shared no common sires, such as halter and racing, but other groups did, such as reining and working cow horse. Although popular sires within one group were rarely shared with another group, all the pedigrees reflected the common roots of the Quarter Horse.

“Additionally, pedigree analysis showed that the most common 15 sires across the groups were all direct tail-male descendants of Three Bars (TB), with several of those stallions showing more than one cross to the Thoroughbred in the first four generations.

“Inbreeding” refers to the mating of relatives and results in an “inbred” individual horse. The amount an individual horse is “inbred” can be estimated from its pedigree or genetic data. In a pedigree analysis, determining an individual’s “co-ancestry coefficient” gives an idea of how closely related individuals are on a pedigree page. Two individuals can be highly related without either of them being inbred, but if you breed two individuals with a high co-ancestry coefficient, their offspring will be inbred.

“Diversity quantifies the amount of genetic variation there is in a population. Typically, a highly inbred population has low genetic diversity. In this study the lowest genetic diversity within a sub-population was in the cutting and racing groups. The highest average inbreeding was found in cutting.”

 

Also, a recent statement from Nena J. Winand, DVM, PhD and a specialist on HERDA that was a witness for the Plaintiffs in a recent lawsuit regarding HERDA mentioned later in this article, said, “I’d point out from a medical perspective, ANY shared ancestry, no matter how remote (far back) is considered inbreeding, because it provides a chance for an individual to inherit the same gene derived from the common ancestor from both parents.”

 

ANALYZING QUARTER HORSE BREEDING RULES:
From this study, it’s clear that the present American Quarter Horse breeding rules require scrutiny to determine: 1) their contribution to this shrinking genetic pool and 2) the adverse affect each adopted breeding rule may or may not have on the breed itself. I wonder if the executives paid six figures at the AQHA and the Executive Committee members, especially the Stud Book and Registration Committee, had any forethought in the ramifications their expansive breeding rule adoptions would have on the Quarter Horse breed and industry over time?

As a private sector Risk Analyst, I’m commonly faced with the task of analyzing practices and concepts to determine either the detriment or usefulness an existing concept or practice has on an organization. In order to shed light on the topic, I examined two specific breeding rules adopted by AQHA: Multiple Embryo Transfer and Frozen Semen. I also examined the impact each adopted breeding rule may have on the breeding populous as well as a correlation of each one’s compliance with AQHA’s Mission Statement.

 

BAD BREEDING PRACTICES:
A horse’s conformation affects his ability to perform certain tasks. Read more about this interesting concept in AQHA’s Form to Function report.
Click for “Form To Function” report>>

“Longstanding breeding practices likely contribute to that. Habits such as “popular sire syndrome,” which is the tendency for many breeders to breed to a top-performing stallion, or the use of assisted reproductive techniques such as frozen semen and embryo transfers can greatly amplify one horse’s genetic impact. Even the practice of always breeding the ‘best to the best’ can contribute to increased inbreeding in a sub-population.

“Any time we take a single individual and increase its ability to generate offspring, that is going to decrease the genetic pool that is reproducing.

“Additionally, when you increase inbreeding and reduce diversity, you increase the incidence of undesirable genes making an appearance.

“A good example is the incidence of HERDA (hereditary equine regional dermal asthenia) in cutting horses. It’s very frequent within this sub-population, which might be the result of decreasing diversity and/or the ‘popular-sire’ effect. A previous study revealed that 28.3 percent of cutting-bred individuals carried the recessive gene for HERDA.”

Click following for AQHAGenetic Pool Shrinks>>

 

FIRST LAWSUIT ENTERS COURT OVER HERDA:
In a lawsuit entitled, “Minshall Vs Hartman Equine, Dos Cat Partners, Shauna and Ed Dufurrena” was tried in a Texas courtroom in 2017. The basis of the lawsuit encompassed fraud with the AQHA stallion Auspicious Cat. The owners of the horse advertised the stallion as being HERDA Negative when in fact the horse was designated N/Hr (a carrier of the HERDA gene) by the American Quarter Horse Association.

 

Prior to this lawsuit, the AQHA required genetic testing of breeding stallions on a graduated scale based on the number of mares bred until Jan. 1, 2016. After this date, each breeding stallion was required to have genetic testing which included a 5-Panel group of designated tests that were designed by AQHA and performed by UC Davis.

 

Up until the filing of this lawsuit, AQHA reserved the right NOT TO RELEASE the 5-Panel test results, except to the owners of the specific horse. This nondisclosure prevented anyone breeding to a specific stallion from obtaining the 5-Panel status of the stallion; therefore, running the risk of passing on a defect to the impending foal.

 

After the filing of the above-captioned lawsuit, AQHA has changed its posture to include releasing the 5-Panel test results to anyone who contacts them and asks for it. It’s also planned that the test results will be on the horse’s pedigree when their new computer database is online. Further, AQHA intends to embed the horses’ 5-Panel test results directly onto the stallions’ registration papers as a permanent record.

 

However, the curious nature of AQHA’s testing requirements does not include breeding mares, which, in my opinion should be a requirement as well. After all, mares carry the same number of genetic chromosomes as stallions do, which includes the mares’ lineage as well.

 

This is exactly what happened in this case as two N/Hr (HERDA carrier) horses were bred together, producing a HERDA affected foal. The Plaintiff’s had simply relied on the honesty and integrity of the stallion owner. Does AQHA have any culpable liability in the matter from their previous posture of not releasing stallion specific genetic testing results?

 

The other curious nature of this saga is that my article AQHA Genetic Pool Shrinks, along with its predetermined scientific facts and warnings about inbreeding, ended up in this courtroom drama two years later.

 

WHAT HAPPENS TO THE FOALS OF THESE MISGUIDED BREEDINGS?
Just about every cutter I’ve talked to wants a High Brow Cat-bred horse because of their winning nature. In fact, some even breed for horses carrying the HERDA gene due to this phenomenon, which is exactly what happened in this lawsuit. The Plaintiffs desired to breed to a High Brow Cat stallion that carried the AQHA N/N designation and ended up breeding to an N/Hr horse. Since their mare carried the N/Hr designation, two N/Hr horses produced a HERDA-affected foal that required an enormous amount of money to maintain.

 

So at the end of the day, what happens to the foals that wash out due to genetic deficiencies: euthanasia, the horse slaughter pipeline, retired and crippled at two or three years of age perhaps? Has our industry become so callous and money hungry that they throw caution to the wind when breeding? What about the poor horse that suffers due to this selfish act? This is an arduous fact to quantify simply due to non-reported statistical data. In my opinion just breeding to a particular line of horses just because they’re winning is a very poor excuse, especially in lieu of the fact that a known line is capable of producing undesirable genetic traits in the American Quarter Horse. We experienced this in the HYPP line of horses!

Also, it’s my opinion that AQHA being the breed registry for the American Quarter Horse should live up to its own Mission Statement and step in to prevent this well-known and established HERDA gene from permeating the American Quarter Horse breed. After all, they are the rule makers and some of their established and unorthodox   breeding rules have and continue to contribute to the shrinking genetic pool of the American Quarter Horse, thus causing direct harm to the breed. Only AQHA can stop or control the insertion of bad genetics into the American Quarter Horse Gene Pool!

 

BREEDING PREREQUISITES 101:

1)         Mare owners should have their horses genetically tested by the AQHA 5-panel prior to breeding.

2)         Mare owners should perform due-diligent research into the genetic test results of the impending desired stallion prior to breeding.

3)         Prior to breeding, consult with a geneticist to determine whether the match up would produce any undesirable traits in the produced foal, especially if a shared lineage or line of horses is in the background of both horses.

 

GENETIC DEFICIENCIES IN THE THOROUGHBRED LINE:
Unfortunately, bad breeding practices and catastrophic results aren’t limited to the American Quarter Horse Industry. In a later article I’ll discuss and delineate the bad breeding practices in the Thoroughbred Industry.

 

“Until Next Time, Keep ‘Em Between The Bridle”

 

WIND RIVER COMPANY LLC
Richard E. “Rick” Dennis
Managing Member
Office/Mobile: (985) 630-3500
Email: windrivercompany@gmail.com
Web Site: http://www.windrivercompanyllc.com

 

 

 

 

 

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