Data Base Established for Horse Protection Act

Newsdate: Wed, 11 May 2011 - 02:00 pm
Location: AVA, Missouri

Friends of Sound Horses (FOSH) announces that it has compiled a database of over 400 court and administrative cases, including over 700 case dispositions, that interpret and enforce the Horse Protection Act (HPA). The HPA was enacted in 1970 to eliminate soring in the horse show ring.

Soring is the abusive practice of creating pain as a means of achieving a flashy gait in the Tennessee Walking Horse and other gaited horse breeds. Despite soring being illegal, it continues to be a common practice in some barns and showing venues.

FOSH President, Lori Northrup, said “We are extremely grateful to the attorneys and volunteers who have donated hundreds of hours of legal research to compile this catalog of HPA cases. This listing and the analysis done on each case will be invaluable for attorneys, humane animal organizations, the United States Department of Agriculture or the Justice Department when seeking stronger enforcement of the HPA, either through litigation or rulemaking.”

Summary information has been collected for each case, with detailed quotations and source information to the case citations. Sample quotes from the database include testimony from veterinarians and other expert witnesses:

“Such severe pain was elicited that the mare would practically go to the ground,” and “Two year old grey mare … (was) leaning over . . . to the point that the horse looked as if it might fall over at any time. . . (Veterinarian testified that this horse) was one of the sorest horses that he has seen . . ." The decisions were issued during a 38 year time period from 1972 through 2010, and more records are added each week from ongoing research.

FOSH is a national leader in the promotion of natural, sound gaited horses and in the fight against abuse and soring of Tennessee Walking Horses. For more information about FOSH or to become a member, please visit or e-mail .

About the Author

Flossie Sellers

As an animal lover since childhood, Flossie was delighted when Mark, the CEO and developer of EquiMed asked her to join his team of contributors.

She enrolled in My Horse University at Michigan State and completed a number of courses in everything related to horse health, nutrition, diseases and conditions, medications, hoof and dental care, barn safety, and first aid.

Staying  up-to-date on the latest developments in horse care and equine health is now a habit, and she enjoys sharing a wealth of information with horse owners everywhere..