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NHSC Takes Steps To Improve Walking Horse Welfare

Organization Announces Year-End Statistics and Appoints New EVP

SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. (February 27, 2009) – Walking Horse Advocates is pleased to announce the National Horse Show Commission (NHSC) is moving forward with its commitment to address and correct the problems that have plagued horse training and exhibitions in the past.

With every horse being inspected every time time it shows, year-end statistics were released showing a decrease in violation numbers from the previous two years while showing an increase in both shows and inspections at Tennessee Walking Horse sanctioned events. At the end of 2008, 50,866 horses at 265 shows had been inspected with 481 violations charged. Through the same period in 2007, 50,620 horses at 250 shows accumulated 506 violations.

NHSC also hired a new executive vice president to replace Lonnie Messick, who retired in 2008 after 30 years of service with the Walking Horse industry. Taking his place will be Andy Messick, an attorney from Murfreesboro. “It is both an honor and a privilege to take over as head of the NHSC. I have big shoes to fill, but I’m confident my time with NHSC will translate to improved measures to ensure the safety of our horses,” said Messick.

The NHSC has future plans in place for additional steps toward their goal of ensuring the welfare of their horses that will likely unfold throughout the year.


About Walking Horse Advocates
Comprised of members from several leading industry groups, Walking Horse Advocates is committed to the protection and humane treatment of the Tennessee Walking Horse. By putting the well-being of horses first, the group is dedicated to the promotion of safe practices in the training and exhibition of this elegant breed through the consistent enforcement of uniform standards and regulations. Formed in 2008, Walking Horse Advocates seeks to enhance the understanding and appreciation of the innate grace and beauty of the Tennessee Walker, often recognized as “the world’s greatest show, trail and pleasure horse.” For more information, please visit

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