"Today, Tennessee Walking Horses are known throughout the industry
as the breed that shows abused and tortured horses."

~ Jim Heird, Ph.D., Do Right By The Horse, February 2010

"If you have men who will exclude any of God's creatures from the shelter of compassion and pity,
you will have men who will deal likewise with their fellow men."

~ St. Francis of Assisi

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

HOW YOU CAN HELP - Letter Writing Campaign to the USDA

This is probably one the most important actions we can take to help end the horrible practice of soring. I received this email from a FOSH member, but it applies to ALL of us who are fighting for the sound horse. We must let the USDA know that we need them to be at the Celebration this year to enforce the HPA and let exhibitors know we do not tolerate their actions.

Please be sure to read all of the post for important directions and contact information. I know I'll be faxing my letter tomorrow! And feel free to contact me if you need help writing your letter!

We are asking for your help. Letters and emails have always had the most impact on the USDA. We are now less than two weeks before the Celebration and we want to flood the USDA with letters asking that the Horse Protect Act be enforced. There is a good chance the other side is also writing the USDA for leniency and of course, we know their lobbyist is doing likwise.

Here is a sample letter. I hate to ask this, but it is truly better that each letter be individualized with your own language. I know that is not always easy as some of us are not that comfortable writing; however, if that is your expertise, please go for it.

FAXes are best and emails are second best. Mr. Shea's email is: kevin.a.shea@usda.gov Dr. Gibson (HPA department head) reports to Mr. Shea. The drawback to the U.S. Postal service is that the anthrax attack several years ago means your letter may not be received for awhile, a long while...so a fax or email is best.

If your spouses, parents, children, friends and club are on board, please have them also send a letter.


Your Name
City, State ZIP


Mr. Kevin A. Shea
1400 Independence Ave., SW
Jamie l. Whitten Building, Room 312-E
Washington, D.C. 20250-3432
FAX: 301-734-4978

Dear Mr. Shea:

I am writing to request that the United States Department of Agriculture strongly enforce the Horse Protection Act for the remainder of the Tennessee Walking Horse show season.

During the 2008 show season, thousands of horses have been subject to being pressure shod, and trainers are continuing to leave the show grounds in droves. The recent report from the American Association of Equine Practitioners independently confirms that DQPs are not performing the inspections appropriately. As a result, it is up to the USDA to protect these gentle and wonderful horses by enforcing the Horse Protection Act to the fullest extent.

Tennessee Walking Horse industry lobbyists may request leniency during this critical show season time; however, now is the time to exert the authority of the USDA and demonstrate to trainers and owners that HPA law breakers will not be allowed to show and will receive tickets for violations. Simply designating a horse as "bad image" and not allowing it to show doesn't protect these horses. It merely protects those that continue to cruelly abuse Tennessee Walking Horses.


Your Name

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