No, horses are not being slaughtered on Florida farms — at least not this time

Marion County Sheriff’s Office takes to social media to set the record straight

Marion County Sheriff's Office said horses are not being slaughtered despite social media reports (Pixabay)

MARION COUNTY, Fla. – A horse is a horse, of course, but not the main course — or for any other reason, according to the Marion County Sheriff’s Office.

The agency took to social media on Saturday to try to quash rumors that horses were being slaughtered in the county.

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The sheriff’s office said it has “received numerous calls and emails regarding a social media post indicating that horses were being slaughtered this week in Marion County.”

According to the post, agricultural deputies said they investigated the claims and found them to be completely unfounded.

“Agriculture plays a large role here in Marion County and any claims such as these are taken seriously and fully investigated,” the post read in part.

If the thought of horses being slaughtered in the Sunshine State sounds foreign, it was reported in Florida in 2019 when sheriff’s officials issued a warning to horse owners saying incidents are on the rise across the state after a horse was found dead in Sumter County — the owner saying at the time that evidence at the scene suggested that whoever was responsible was seeking the horse’s meat.

News 6 also spoke to a family in Marion County in 2019 after their horse was found dead. That family believed their horse was also slaughtered for its meat.

Meanwhile, a third horse death was reported in December 2019 in Manatee County and rewards totaling $13,000 were offered at the time in that slaughtering case.

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About the Author:

Jacob joined in 2022. He spent 19 years at the Orlando Sentinel, mostly as a photojournalist and video journalist, before joining Spectrum News 13 as a web editor and digital journalist in 2021.