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Collins lauds House passing of soring ban for horses

PRESS RELEASE


WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Representatives Chris Collins (R-NY-27), Kurt Schrader (D-OR-5), Ted Yoho (R-FL-3), Ron Estes (R-KS-4), and Jan Schakowsky (D-IL-9) celebrated the passage of H.R. 693, the U.S. Senator Joseph D. Tydings Memorial Prevent All Soring Tactics Act of 2019 (PAST Act). The legislation they sponsored together would amend the Horse Protection Act to ban the use of devices implicated in the practice of soring, grant the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) heightened control over investigations, and enforce harsher penalties on those who violate this Act.

Horse soring intentionally inflicts pain to the horse's legs or hooves to force the horse to perform an exaggerated gait. Also, blistering agents are applied to the horse's limbs, causing extreme pain. Some trainers use pressure shoeing which involves cutting the horse's hoof and tightly nailing on a shoe to cause excruciating pressure whenever the horse puts weight on the hoof.

"I have fought for years to end the cruel practice of horse soring," said Congressman Collins. "Trainers purposely inflict pain on horses to gain an unfair advantage in shows. No horse should be subjected to this abusive tactic."

Soring was outlawed in the early 1970s when Congress passed the Horse Protection Act, but due to adequate funding, the USDA could not send agency officials to every Tennessee walking horse and Racking Horse show. As a result, the USDA instituted a system that allows horse organizations to train and license their own inspectors to examine horses for signs of soring. Unfortunately, these organizations are made up of people who have a stake in preserving this practice.

"With passage of this legislation, Congress has regained control to officially ban this practice," added Collins.

The legislation has support from several major animal protection organizations, including the Humane Society of the United States, the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association, the American Horse Council, and the Animal Welfare Institute.

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