WASHINGTON, DC – Former U. S. Senator Joseph Tydings (D-MD) is the Father of the Horse Protect Act passed 44 years ago in 1970. Senator Tydings has fought the good fight for almost 45 years to stop soring.
JUNE 18, 2014 – “WALK ON WASHINGTON” RALLY
Senator Tydings says the HPA was passed when a Senate Committee Hearing in 1969 was recessed. Senator Tydings took the Senate Committee members outside into the parking lot where he showed them the damage done to a Tennessee Walking Horse named “Papa Charcoal” resulting from soring practices. The horse was purchased by the American Horse Protection Society from the S. W. Beech owned Murray Farm Sale in Lewisburg, Tennessee.
OCTOBER 3, 1969
JUNE 18, 2014 – FORMER U.S. SENATOR JOE TYDINGS (D-MD) , 86 Years of Age
After appearing at the “WALK ON WASHINGTON” Rally on Wednesday, June 18, 2014, set in front of the U. S. Capitol building, Senator Tydings then travelled about an hour from Washington DC to inspect a Tennessee Walking Horse named “Dutch” who like “Papa Charcoal” 44 years ago, suffered from the soring abuse.
Also, like “Papa Charcoal”, “Dutch” was rescued from a killer buyer at the New Holland, Pennsylvania Auction by the Humane Society Of The United States.
“In June of 2013, this Tennessee Walking Horse was peddled at a livestock auction in Kentucky with visibly scarred fetlocks and wearing stacks that are used on “Big Lick” Walking horses. He was quickly bought by a horse trader and transported to a livestock auction in Tennessee. From there he was sold again, and shipped to the New Holland auction in Pennsylvania.
Once at New Holland, the stacks were abruptly removed and replaced with regular shoes before he was offered for sale. The sudden change caused lameness that may have saved his life. He was pulled from the auction where “kill buyers” would have likely scooped him up for slaughter, and a rescue group bought Dutch on behalf of The Humane Society of the United States.
USDA was immediately contacted to investigate this sore horse that had been offered for sale at numerous auctions, in violation of the Horse Protection Act. Those involved with transporting and selling the horse were issued formal warnings. While the original owner was never found, Dutch has spent the last year of his life recovering from his abusive past.
Dutch had been a show horse, forced (through an abusive and illegal training technique called “soring”) to step higher and perform an unnatural, exaggerated gait – the “Big Lick”. Soring involves the application of caustic chemicals to the horse’s limbs, causing extreme suffering. Whenever ridden – in training or competition – trainers put chains around the horse’s sored ankles, which strike and further irritate the already painful areas. These horses often live in constant and extreme pain throughout their show ring careers.
In 1970, Congress passed the Horse Protection Act (HPA) to end the abhorrent practice of soring. This federal law prohibits the public showing, sale and auction of horses that have been sored. However, the systematic abuse continues to be inflicted on Tennessee Walking Horses, to produce the Big Lick gait rewarded by horse show judges.
The Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act (H.R. 1518/S. 1406) will close the loopholes in the HPA by eliminating the failed system of industry self-policing, prohibiting the use of the “stacks” and chains used to inflict pain on Tennessee Walking, Racking and Spotted Saddle horses, and increasing penalties to finally provide an effective deterrent.
The PAST Act is cosponsored by a majority of both the U.S. House and Senate ““ 293 Representatives and 56 Senators. It is endorsed by the American Horse Council, the American Veterinary Medical Association, all 50 state veterinary medical associations, the American Association of Equine Practitioners and dozens of leading horse industry organizations.
“Dutch” will always have the scars of his abusive training, and he is a living symbol of why the PAST Act must be enacted.”
Thanks to the loving care of humans who have rebuilt Dutch’s confidence over the past year, “Dutch” is now recovering from the physical and mental torture of the sore Big Lick training methods.
Thanks to former U.S. Senator Joseph Tydings (D-MD) staying the course for 44 years, the PAST ACT is going to be passed in 2014.
Then there will be a new day for the Tennessee Walking Horse breed.