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Horses Tortured So They Can Perform “Big Lick” Gait For Blue Ribbons

Soring involves the intentional infliction of pain to a horse’s legs or hooves in order to force the horse to perform an artificial, exaggerated gait. Caustic chemicals—blistering agents like mustard oil, diesel fuel, and kerosene—are applied to the horse’s limbs, causing extreme pain and suffering.

A particularly egregious form of soring, known as pressure shoeing, involves cutting a horse’s hoof almost to the quick and tightly nailing on a shoe or standing a horse for hours with the sensitive part of his soles on a block or other raised object. This causes excruciating pressure and pain whenever the horse puts weight on the hoof.

Soring has been a common and widespread practice in the Tennessee walking horse show industry for decades. Today, judges continue to reward the artificial “Big Lick” gait, thus encouraging participants to sore their horses and allowing the cruel practice to persist.

The PAST Act (H.R. 693/S. 1007) would amend the Horse Protection Act to crack down on the barbaric abuses involved in soring, such as grinding down the hoof to expose sensitive tissues, applying chemicals to burn a horse’s flesh, inserting sharp objects into the sole of the hoof, and using large stacked shoes and chains to exacerbate the pain these animals endure—purely for the sake of “competition.” The legislation would end the industry’s failed system of self-policing, explicitly ban the use of devices implicated in the practice of soring, and strengthen penalties.

U.S. House Passes Bill To Stop The Practice Of Soring In Horses.


*SOURCE OF MATERIAL IN AWI- Animal Welfare Institute.