The American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) commends representatives Steve Cohen (TN-09), Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01), Jan Schakowsky (IL-09) and Vern Buchanan (FL-16) for introducing the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act on October 1. The legislation (H.R. 5441) would protect Tennessee Walking Horses, Spotted Saddle horses and Racking horses by outlawing the abusive practice of soring, which is the intentional infliction of pain to create the exaggerated gait known as the “big lick” in the show ring.
The legislation has the support of 212 additional co-sponsors in the U.S. House of Representatives. In addition, companion legislation (S. 2295) introduced in the U.S. Senate on June 24 by Sen. Mike Crapo (R-ID) currently has 48 co-sponsors.
The PAST Act is supported by the AAEP, American Veterinary Medical Association and hundreds of other stakeholder groups and individuals, including the American Horse Council, Humane Society of the United States, American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and many state veterinary medical associations in the U.S.
“For many years, the AAEP has championed legislation to end this cruel practice, and the recent reintroduction of this important bill to protect horses is vital,” said Dr. Scott Hay, 2021 AAEP president. “We now will work for passage along with our more than 9,000 equine veterinarian and student members and the industry.”
AAEP members in the U.S. are encouraged to contact their representative and senators and ask them to support the bill in their respective chamber and become a co-sponsor. Contact information is available at house.gov/representatives and senate.gov/senators.
The American Association of Equine Practitioners, headquartered in Lexington, Ky., was founded in 1954 as a non-profit organization dedicated to the health and welfare of the horse. Currently, AAEP reaches more than 5 million horse owners through its over 9,000 members worldwide and is actively involved in ethics issues, practice management, research and continuing education in the equine veterinary profession and horse industry.