Two videos show Leandro Aparecido da Silva, a 44-year-old dressage rider of the Brazilian Olympic team, and his son while they mistreat a pony "guilty" of biting his daughter.
According to Eurodressage, the two videos were taken with the mobile phone of his son who then posted them on social networks on 12 July, but the episodes date back to a few months ago: in the first video we see Leandro Aparecido da Silva riding the pony, pulling hard on the horse’s mouth several times and whipping him repeatedly with the reins, while his son films the scene and laughs. In the second video, we see the son who brings the same pony to crash against an obstacle that is obviously impossible to jump over with such a weight on his back, and making him flip forward prior to landing on his back, with the so called "rotation fall".
When he received a lot of criticism and attacks after the videos were released in the Brazilian press, Leandro Aparecido da Silva awkwardly tried to defend himself by saying that he was only correcting the pony’s behavioural faults to "make him understand" that he should not bite anymore, adding that he did not use spurs and whips and that in his opinion he was only correcting the pony in a “technical way”.
Two days after the video was posted, the Brazilian Equestrian Federation started an investigation and declared that they “reject any mistreatment and abuse that endangers the physical or psychological integrity of any animal".”.
Aparecido da Silva has been a member of the Brazilian Olympic team for a long time. He participated in the 2008 Olympics, in various Pan American Games and was a candidate for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.
The FEI International Equestrian Federation is also looking into the case, suggesting that they will take the necessary measures.
As regards the allegations of ill-treatment, the Brazilian law classifies animal abuse as an environmental crime. The rules prohibit any abuse, mistreatment or mutilation of pets or wild animals and the punishment applied for these crimes goes from 3 months to 1 year of imprisonment as well as fines, with confiscation of the animal.
Meanwhile, Sociedade Hipica Paulista, of which Leandro Aparecido da Silva and his son are members, have revoked the license of both to train and teach outside the club.
From our point of view, this mistreatment is just another sign of ignorance on the part of the many so-called horse experts, who are totally unaware that this kind of punishment cannot be applied to horses as they are unable to associate what they are suffering with what they did previously, if even a short period of time has passed between the two episodes. Without forgetting that violence is a solution to be condemned as a cowardly and brutal act.
VIDEO Leandro Aparecido da Silva
VIDEO son of Leandro Aparecido da Silva
sheet ard and photo of Leandro Aparecido da Silva
Video of a few years ago, where Aparecido da Silva does a dressage training: you can clearly see what this discipline consists of and for what reason we are strongly opposed