The deaths of multiple horses during the making of HBO drama “Luck” has shined a troubling spotlight on the reality of horse racing.
The network recently cancelled the racetrack series after three horses were injured and euthanized over the last two years. “Luck” was in its second season of production when the third injury occurred. The horse suffered a head injury when it slipped, toppled backwards and hit her head—something that isn’t uncommon accident experts say. Meanwhile, two thoroughbreds, which suffered fractures while running, were put down during the show’s first season.
“Safety is always of paramount concern,” HBO said in a press statement. “While we maintained the highest safety standards possible, accidents unfortunately happen and it is impossible to guarantee they won’t in the future. Accordingly, we have reached this difficult decision.”
According to the Senior Vice President of the American Humane Association’s TV and film unit Karen Rosas, losing three horses on a single project is unprecedented.
Sadly, because of breeding and selective genetic pairing many of these horses are born with fragile bodies. Approximately 800 racehorses die each year from fatal injuries and about 3,566 suffer injuries so painful that they can’t finish their races.
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