"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

Sunday, July 24, 2011

NEWS and ARTICLES - Sore Horses Found At Tollesboro Fair July 15-16, 2011

The USDA rides the rescue! Thank you to Mr. Sacks for attending this show and exposing this group for who they really are.

As usual, the majority of the people left the show when the USDA came, so only 135 horses were shown this year when normally there are over 300. Seems quite suspicious to me--the USDA shows up and everyone scatters.

Four horses were found sore at the Tollesboro Lions Club Fair on July 15 and 16, 2011. "Friday, one violation was discovered. The horse had two sore feet. The Friday night violation will be a federal case. Three more violations were discovered Sunday. Two horses had one sore foot each. Another violation was for a foreign substance." I wonder how many more would have been found sore if people had stayed around? How many more horses are suffering silently while being driven back home?

And the reason why I believe pads, chains and bands need to be outlawed: "All of the violations were for 'padded' horses." As the USDA statistics show us, 90% of all the horses inspected and found in violation for the past three years (2008, 2009 and 2010) were padded horses. The industry has abused it privilege to have padded horses. This privilege needs to end.

" 'It is a legitimate concern,' Stanfield said of soring. 'I just wish it didn't harm us nonprofits.' "

I agree, Mr. Stanfield. I feel sorry for the charities that are supposed to benefit from this show as they might not have gotten as much money as they normally would have. I hope that this will help you make different decisions as to where you get your donations from in the future. The TWH industry continues to hide their abuse behind the guise of charity, and since sore horses were found, I think this show is proof of that. But still, horses are abused in order to help those in need...it makes no sense to me at all.

Click here for the link to the article from the The Ledger Independent. I have copied and pasted the article in its entirety below.


USDA inspectors concerned about possible "horse soring" at Tollesboro fair

MISTY MAYNARD misty.maynard@lee.net | Posted: Friday, July 22, 2011 10:00 pm

Concerns about a practice called "horse soring" prompted the U.S. Department of Agriculture to send an inspector to the Tollesboro Lions Club Fair July 15 and 16, said Dave Sacks, a USDA spokesperson.

Four citations were written as a result of the USDA's presence, Sacks said. The inspector's presence also likely contributed to a smaller amount of participants in the horse show, said Paul Hampton, horse show manager and Lions Club member.

"Any show they've been to, it affects them big time," Hampton said.

The total amount of horses for both nights this year was just 135, compared to the more than 300 horses that were shown during the Friday and Saturday nights of the horse show last year, Hampton said.

According to the USDA, soring is the practice of applying a chemical, such as mustard oil, overweight chains or trimming a hoof to expose the sensitive tissue inflicted on any limb or a horse that can cause the horse to suffer physical pain or distress when moving.

"The practice of soring horses is aimed at producing an exaggerated show gait for competition," according to the USDA. "This practice is primarily used in the training of Tennessee Walking Horses, racking horses and related breeds."

According to the USDA, a similar gait can be achieved through selective breeding and humane training methods, but soring achieves the exaggerated gait with less effort and in less time.

Soring was outlawed under the federal Horse Protection Act, passed in 1970.

"We don't go to all shows, but certainly when we do go to a horse show we want to make sure no horses are being sored," Sacks said.

Animals are inspected by a designated qualified person before every show. When a USDA inspector come to a show, Sacks said they oversee the DQP process to make sure all protocols and standards are being followed.

Craig Stanfield, second vice president of the Lions Clubs, said horse soring has never been an issue at the Tollesboro fair and animal health is the number one priority. However, some exhibitors did not want to "take the chance" and left the show.

"It is a legitimate concern," Stanfield said of soring. "I just wish it didn't harm us nonprofits."

Friday, one violation was discovered. The horse had two sore feet. The Friday night violation will be a federal case, Sacks said.

Three more violations were discovered Saturday. Two horses had one sore foot each. Another violation was for a foreign substance.

All of the violations were for "padded" horses.

"The one violation listed as a federal case will be addressed by USDA, while the other three violations will more than likely be handled by the horse industry organization for that particular show," Sacks said. "For the federal case, our investigators must first conduct their investigation, then the case information will be turned over to USDA's Office of General Counsel. So, any potential fine will come about after this legal process."

The fair is the Tollesboro Lions Club biggest annual fund-raiser. The Lions Club contributes to several community projects and provides glasses for those who cannot afford them. They have also spent $275,000 in the past four years on improvements to the fair grounds, which are open to the public for recreation year-round. The grounds include a walking track, baseball field and basketball court, Stanfield said.

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