Skip to content

USDA to Propose Changes to HPA (Full Text of Rule Included)

Sources have confirmed to Walking Horse Report that the proposed changes to the Horse Protection Act will be published in the Federal Register tomorrow (July 26th) which will begin the 60-day comment period on the proposed rule.  

The proposed rule, which will be published in its entirety after being posted in the Federal Register would ban the use of pads and action devices in the show ring by Tennessee Walking Horses, Racking Horses, or related breed that performs with an accentuated gait.  It also prohibits the use of bands.  The proposed rule did not prohibit weighted shoes, except on horses under two years of age.  Those horses would be allowed a maximum 16oz. shoe.

The proposed rule also will relieve HIOs of all regulatory responsibilities and record keeping under the HPA.  APHIS would assume the training, licensing and monitoring of third-party, independent inspectors to conduct inspections at shows, exhibitions, sales and auctions.  These inspectors, called Horse Protection Inspectors, would not be Veterinary Medical Officers nor would they be APHIS officials or employees.  They will be paid by horse show management, not APHIS.

The USDA will host five listening sessions where concerned parties can voice their opinions on the proposed rule.  These will be held in Murfreesboro on August 9th, Lexington, KY, on August 10th, Sacramento, CA, on August 16th, Riverdale, MD, on September 6th and a virtual public hearing on September 15th.

The proposed rule is similar to what industry leaders expected from APHIS.  The firm of Kelley Drye & Warren has already been retained and begun work on the response to the proposed rulemaking.  Attorney Joe Wilson accompanied representatives from The Celebration and Performance Show Horse Association to a meeting with the Office of Management and Budget earlier in July.

Click here to view the proposed rule.

As more details of the proposed rule become known they will be reported on Walking Horse Report.

More Stories

  • Throwback Thursday

    Check out this week's Throwback on ReporTV featuring Walk Time Charlie and the late Chad Baucom from the 2012 Marshall County Horseman's Association Horse Show. Read More
  • Trainers meet before 50th anniversary show

    The general membership of the Walking Horse Trainers’ Association gathered at 4 p.m. Wednesday at the Blue Ribbon Circle on the grounds of the Celebration, a tradition that takes place each year before the National Trainers’ Show.  Read More
  • Youth Council Meeting Saturday, March 24

    If you are interested in joining the Youth Council please make plans to meet on the top concourse during the Trainers’ Show on Saturday, March 24 at 5:30 pm to fill out new membership forms. Read More
  • Equine Obituary - John F.K.'s Delight

    Multi-titled WGC and WC John F. K.’s Delight aka “Bingo” passed away on March 8 at McCarley Farms in Samantha, Alabama. Born Oct. 1, 1997, the 21 year old stallion was owned and loved by Linda McCarley in his final years.  Read More
  • National Trainers' Show Live Stream

    What A Horse will be handling the Live Streaming duties for the National Trainers' Show again this year. You must purchase the What A Horse Trainers' Show Live webcast to access the Live Stream. ReporTV will be posting highlight videos the following day of each session... Read More
  • Georgia Senator introduces resolution encouraging passage of the PAST Act

    Georgia State Senator Curt Thompson recently introduced a resolution in the Georgia Senate in support of the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST Act). The summary on the Georgia Lobby website read... Read More
  • Cantrell: We do ‘it’ because we believe in our horse

    In celebrating our 50th Walking Horse Trainers Association Anniversary, this is a salute to all the dedicated professional trainers that have passed through these “gates” . . . and the ones yet to come... Read More
  • Trainers revamp Horse of the Year awards

    The Walking Horse Trainers’ Association (WHTA) will revamp the Horse of the Year awards program in 2018. Previously, the Horse of the Year was determined by a vote of the licensed members of the WHTA. The program has seen a decline in interest from voting members in recent years and the board of directors decided a change was needed. Read More
  • Latest Issue March 19 18

    Read More
  • SHOW to measure both ponies and 15.2 & Under horses

    The SHOW HIO will begin to measure horses in post-show inspections for compliance with class requirements in pony and 15.2 & under divisions. In previous years, show management could require horses to measure pre-show, however no post-show measurements were completed. Read More