A former industry veterinarian supports activist calls for an immediate inquiry into the handling of Anthony Van Dyck after fatal Melbourne Cup incident.
The Coalition for the Protection of Racehorses (CPR), along with several animal activist groups and the Animal Justice Party, are calling for an immediate independent investigation into the handling of Anthony Van Dyck after his fetlock snapped in the Melbourne Cup on Tuesday. It is also calling for an independent necropsy report that will be made public, unlike necropsy reports currently conducted by the industry.
Former racing industry veterinarian of 50 years Dr Peter Kerkenezov is highly concerned about the treatment of Anthony Van Dyck, stating yesterday to CPR:
“It is apparent Anthony Van Dyck suffered a race induced catastrophic skeletal injury associated with extreme pain and suffering. The usual humane response would have been to euthanise the stallion, there and then, on the track, without inflicting any further pain transporting him to a new location. It is alleged this was not done despite the stallion being “unfit to load”. It is claimed Anthony Van Dyck was loaded and transported. The ethical nature of this decision needs investigating as a possible violation of animal welfare”
Dr Peter Kerkenezov BM
Equine Veterinarian (1971 – 2020)
Wednesday 4th November 2020
Dr Kerkenezov has offered to carry out the independent investigation. His full statement can be read here.
The footage of the race, available here, shows the fetlock bone fracture as is evidenced by the way the hoof flaps in the opposite direction to the normal movement of the hoof.
CPR Campaign Director Elio Celotto said “In instances like this catastrophic injury, the only humane option is to immediately euthanase the horse. The question is, why was the horse loaded onto a float and removed from the racetrack when the prognosis was clearly evident?”
Stewards vision of the race is missing from the industry website and the regular vision has been edited to zoom in on the winning horses, cutting out the shocking vision of Anthony Van Dyck that those watching live saw.
For a close-up on the kind of suffering Anthony Van Dyck would have experienced as his death was delayed, we can look to footage captured of Australian horse, Pure Luck/Voyage King, lasy year in Hong Kong whose hoof was also flapping in the opposite direction.
“The racing industry has again shown they simply cannot be trusted, and it must now explain why Anthony Van Dyck was taken off the racecourse instead of being immediately euthanased” he said
Mr Celotto added “Anthony Van Dyck would have been in excruciating pain. To not euthanase him on the racetrack is just another example of the racing industry seeking to avoid the grim site of a green screen being pulled to hide the death of yet another horse on Melbourne Cup day.”
“This is a trend we are seeing more and more, as horses who are taken off the racetrack to be killed do not need their death recorded in the stewards’ reports, thereby reducing the on-track death statistics. The death of Anthony Van Dyck was reported simply because the eyes of the world were watching and the news could not be hidden, despite attempts to do so” Mr Celotto said.