Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Not dog related but horse related.... important...

I was sent this email from a good person, supporter of dog rescue and someone who volunteers when she can. Please support her on this very important topic

Hello and thank you for a few minutes of your time!

I am writing today because there is a very serious rule making petition before the USDA that would do a great deal to end the suffering that Tennessee Walking Horses must endure. This is a subject I feel very strongly about, which is why I am reaching out for your help. There is a deadline of July 26 for public comment on a USDA rule making petition to add mandatory penalties to the Horse Protection Act. I am a very strong supporter of the sound horse and I am working to get as many people as possible to add their comments to the public register so that the USDA will add these penalties to the law and end this horrific abuse. Would you consider adding your support in this matter?

This issue has become very clouded over the years, because there is a lot of $ involved and deep traditions, but I will try to put it in a nutshell. The Horse Protection Act (HPA, 15 U.S.C. 1821-1831) authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to promulgate regulations prohibiting the showing, exhibition, transport, or sale of horses subjected to soring, a practice of accentuating a horses' gait through the infliction of pain. It was enacted nearly 40 years ago, and yet this cruel practice continues. The HPA set out a plan where " The Industry " would set up organizations to police itself. These organizations were called " HIOs " Horse Industry Organizations. The HIOs would then train their own " DQPs " designated qualified persons, to inspect the horses prior to showing, to see if they had evidence for abuse. Of course this was an utter failure. Because there is a lot of $$ involved, and the sore horse wins at horse shows, the system continues. In a petition sent on August 4, 2010, The Humane Society of the United States, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, the American Horse Protection Association, Inc., Friends of Sound Horses, Inc., and former Senator Joseph D. Tydings requested that APHIS ( Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service ) change its regulations and policies regarding the protection of horses from the practice of soring. . On May 27, 2011 the USDA published in the Federal Register a proposal to amend the Horse Protection regulations to require Horse Industry Organizations (HIO) or associations that license Designated Qualified Persons (DQP) to assess and enforce minimum penalties for violations of the Horse Protection Act and the regulations. The show horse industry must change and I think there is great power in numbers.

It is very easy to add your support to this proposal. Below is the link to the government portal which is accepting public comments until midnight July 26, 2011. Any interested persons can Google any of this material and find a wealth of information. There is a great blog that actually shows photos and a video of a sore horse being inspected, and the spotted horse in the video not only passed inspection, he won the class! The blog is called " For the Tennessee Walking Horse " http://forthetnwalkinghorse.blogspot.com As all of you know, I have been showing horses for decades. I have witnessed this abuse first hand, I have been in the show barns and smelled the kerosene and gojo hand cleaner they use to sore the performance horses. I have been at horse shows where the USDA arrives to inspect horses and the entire fairgrounds empties out in a cloud of dust as sore horses are thrown in trailers and hurried off the showgrounds to avoid a Federal ticket. I get beat by sore horses almost every time I show. I know how bad this is, I know how cruel it is, I personally own a former big lick horse and he is terribly damaged. I understand how important this rule change is to the welfare of the breed I love. I would really appreciate everyone's support at this time of critical need. Please lend your support, these horses need our help.

Here is how you can help, it will only take about 3 minutes and you can add your name as simply anonymous if you wish ( I had to do this because I personally know a lot of the sore horse people who would like to see this amendment come to a swift end ! ) . I would like to invite you to fwd. this note on to anyone you might know who would like to lend their support at a time that it is so desperately needed.

Remember, you are writing to " Support the rule making petition to add mandatory penalties to the Horse Protection Act. "

CLICK HERE for the document's page, and CLICK THE ORANGE BUTTON to submit your comment. If you have more to say than the allotted space, you can write your response in Word or any other computer program and save it as a PDF file. Or send a letter to this address:

Docket No. APHIS-2011-0030, Regulatory Analysis and Development, PPD, APHIS, Station 3A-03.8, 4700 River Road Unit 118, Riverdale, MD 20737-1238. Please state that your comment refers to Docket No. APHIS-2011-0030.

I would like to personally thank you very much,


P.S. Here is a photo of a sore " Big Lick " walking horse, also called a padded horse. We call this " standing in a bucket " . His feet hurt so bad

he is trying to stay standing without putting more weight on than he has to.


Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for posting this. It reminds me of this website.


You have a wonderfully informative blog that has taught me a lot. Thank you for all you do for the animals both canine and equine alike! :)

selkie said...

that's horrific.