An example of the big lick.
by RMHP Staff,
Two senators are supporting a bill that could end the cruel practice of horse soring. Sens. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) and Mark Warner (D-Va.) reintroduced the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act (S. 1121) last week.
Soring is a practice in which some in the Tennessee Walking Horse industry and other breeds apply blistering or burning agents, lacerations, sharp objects, or other substances or devices to the horse’s foot. By doing so, they make each step painful, forcing the horse to perform an exaggerated high-stepping gait that is rewarded in the horse show ring. The gait is also know as “the big lick.”
Although illegal under federal law, the method continues to be used by some in the industry. The industry also utilizes a method of “self-policing,” which has been found in-effective, according to its critics.
“Soring is inhumane, and this bipartisan legislation takes an important step toward stopping this abusive training tactic that intentionally inflicts pain on horses,” said Ayotte. “I will continue to work across the aisle to protect horses from this cruel practice.”
The bill seeks to:
– make the actual act of soring a crime;
– eliminate the current self-policing system in the walking horse industry by requiring the USDA to license, train, assign, and oversee inspectors;
– end the use of action devices and performance packages;
– increase civil and criminal penalties for violation; and
– allow for the permanent disqualification of violators.
Congress unsuccessfully tried last session to pass the bill, but it stalled out.
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Click here to take action and ask your senators to co-sponsor the Prevent All Soring Tactics Act.
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