Petition to End Soring

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Petition to End Soring

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    07-30-2008, 11:25 AM
Petition to End Soring

As most of you may know - there's been a law on the books since the early 1970s that prohibits soring of the TWH. As you also probably know, the USDA is severely underfunded when it comes to enforcing this law.

One Horse at Time is sponsoring a petition in an effort to bring this issue to the public's attention and hopefully causing some changes.

Please honor your love for horses by signing this petition and then by passing it along to as many people as you know.

Thank you.
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    08-02-2008, 10:09 AM
Um, I'm confused. You want me to sign a petition about stopping something that was outlawed in the 1970's!?!?

What is petition's purpose? What is it supposed to change? (that is what a petition is supposed to do, change something.)
    08-15-2008, 04:37 AM
Tx, the whole reason for the petition is to raise awareness. Although soring was outlawed in the 70's, it still runs rampant today. There are just not enough honest people who are willing or qualified to monitor these events and check the horses. Just because something is written in the rule books doesn't mean that it is being enforced. Just look at western pleasure, the aqha rules clearly state that the horse's ears shall not drop below the level of the withers for more than 3 strides but still you see the "almost" peanut rollers winning the futurities. I say almost because it is not quite as bad as it was about 15 years ago, but it is FAR from natural. They are trying to get more people to help so that maybe it can be monitored at every show instead of 1 out of every 100. There are no TWH or gaited horses around here so signing that petition is really all I can do.
Sorry for ranting, it just makes me mad to see what some of these horses go through.
    08-15-2008, 04:48 AM
I can attest to how far reaching the soring is. I need to post pictures of my mare's legs before they heal more. She has open wounds on them, places where the hair shaft has died and has turned white, and how she is just now learning how to be a horse again. This mare is only 6, but she has been through tortures no horse should ever endure. I was aware that it was going on, but I was not at all aware just how widespread it still is until a flesh and blood example decided it was time to come home with me. Is a TWH rescue/awareness organization. Give them a look. And give these horses a chance.
    08-15-2008, 04:55 AM
This is going to sound really dumb. But what do you mean by soring?
Sorry, never heard of 'soring' before.
    08-15-2008, 05:08 AM
Foal I think the pictures speak for themselves.

In those shoes, the 4" padded ones, my mare had marbles and at another point a golfballs with screws in them. She had open wounds on the backs of her hooves, and her hind end is majorly screwed up muscularly. It's going to take me a while to get her back into shape. She had kerosene put on her legs. It's pretty horrific what happens to them. The barn I bought her from had SIX USDA violations in ONE YEAR. They were still operating and showing.

Thankfully, in the 3 weeks I've had her, she's had a complete personality change. I love her so much, all 17.2hh of her!
    08-15-2008, 05:22 AM
Um, sorry, I don;t really like looking at pictures of horses in or after abuse, so I didn't open that link. Sorry, could you please just describe it to me?

    08-15-2008, 05:27 AM
In words then:

By Keith Dane

There wasn't much to celebrate when the 2007 Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration drew to a close. To the contrary, the crowning of another World Grand Champion turned out to be just another missed opportunity to clean up this industry.

The high-stepping stride of the Tennessee Walker has long entertained equestrians in the South. But the gait of these splendid animals too often comes at a cost, when they are intentionally made to suffer for the sake of the spectacle—their distinctive ambling walk exaggerated by inflicting pain on their feet.

In 2006, the breed's National Celebration in Shelbyville, Tenn. Was shut down. To the mortification of organizers and spectators, most of the finalists were disqualified for violations of the federal Horse Protection Act.

This year was supposed to be different: Management and horse owners were supposed to show the world they could restore credibility to this industry. In advance, they sought advice from The Humane Society of the United States, among others. Come the competition, the Tennessee Walking horse would be shown with assurances that the animals were treated humanely.

Sadly, it didn't turn out that way.

It is a big step for an ingrained culture to re-make itself, particularly a proud old culture that has grown up around these wonderful horses. That's what organizers promised this time around. But when the crowd gathered, there were no bold steps forward. Rather than restore the reputation of these horses and this event by letting the world see exactly what was happening, management chose to throw up barriers to scrutiny. In so doing, they completely failed to dispel clouds of suspicion that have darkened this event for too long.

The culprit in the Tennessee Walking Horse story is the inhumane practice of "soring." This is the intentional infliction of pain to the legs of a horse in order to enhance its gait. It can be accomplished by applying caustic chemicals on the horse's ankles, or by pressure shoeing—cutting the horse's hoof so short that it is painful to bear weight on it.

But Americans have no tolerance for endeavors that inflict suffering on animals, certainly not for the sake of entertainment. We need only to look at the outrage generated by the recent headlines over dogfighting for evidence of this.

You see, at those times when the U.S. Department of Agriculture can spare an inspector to attend a Walking Horse competition, violations can be 10 times as numerous as when the industry regulates itself. In 2006, with USDA on hand to oversee industry inspectors, the entire event unraveled.

This year, with inspectors hired by show management conducting the examinations, HSUS observers watched horses react in pain upon inspection and still be allowed to compete. Handlers held horses during inspections in a manner prohibited under federal regulation. Numerous other regulations were repeatedly violated. Despite a promise to limit the number of handlers in the warm-up area, as many as seven people tended to a single horse as the competition neared an end.

As a safeguard against illegal activity, the show had promised random inspections of the barn area during the show. Instead, inspectors simply rode around the barn on a golf cart for several hours each night.

This kind of enforcement sleight-of-hand just won't do. In order to restore its credibility, the Celebration needed to ensure that horses were not abused for entertainment and profit. They failed to deliver, leaving 2007 to be remembered as just another year that the Tennessee Walking Horse industry celebrated business-as-usual.

Keith Dane is the director of Equine Protection at The Humane Society of the United States.
    08-15-2008, 05:29 AM
Thats sick. Im so glad we don't have this dicipline in Aus.
    08-15-2008, 05:32 AM
Um, sorry, I don;t really like looking at pictures of horses in or after abuse, so I didn't open that link. Sorry, could you please just describe it to me?
they put caustic chemicals on the horses fetlocks to cause blistering then put chains on top of the blisters that cause the horse to pick up his legs quickly and very high (simple version)
If you want more details without the pictures go to then click on critical issues then choose the article to the left that says "Soring and the Big Lick"

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