By Dr. Whitney Miller, assistant director, Governmental Relations Division
Taking a stand to end the abusive practice of soring, Congressman Kurt Schrader (D-Ore.) called upon his fellow members of Congress to show their opposition to the practice by supporting stricter enforcement of the law by the USDA. (View speech here and transcript here). The speech came just one day after national media exposure of an undercover investigation highlighting the problem of soring within the walking horse industry.
Soring is the act of deliberately causing pain to exaggerate the leg motion of high-gaited horses, such as Tennessee Walking Horses. Soring is an egregious form of animal abuse and cruelty that robs horses of the opportunity to display (and spectators to observe) the beauty of the racking gait that comes naturally to these animals. This inhumane practice, despite being illegal for 40 years under the Horse Protection Act (HPA), is still used far too often by many owners and trainers to win in the show ring.
The AVMA fully supports USDA in their efforts to continue enhancement and enforcement of regulations promulgated under the HPA, as well as the prosecution of HPA violators. The AVMA Governmental Relations, Animal Welfare and Communications Divisions supported Congressman Schrader in this effort.
View the AVMA’s resources on soring here.
For more information please contact Dr. Whitney Miller, assistant director, AVMA Governmental Relations Division.