National Equine Welfare Code of Practice: HSUS Reaction

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) has weighed in on the recent endorsement of a national welfare code of practice for the horse industry. Drafted by the American Horse Council and endorsed by several major horse industry groups, the welfare code offers generic guidelines for responsible breeding, training and care of horses (read the code).

"The Humane Society of the United States is encouraged that these horse industry groups have endorsed a code of practice to better ensure the safety and welfare of the horses from which many of their members make a livelihood," said Holly Hazard, The HSUS' chief innovations officer. "In all equestrian pursuits, it is paramount that the welfare of the horse take precedence over the goals and desires of breeders, trainers, owners, competitors, and other industry stakeholders.

"We are hopeful that this code of practice will translate into meaningful action to address some of the most pressing welfare problems facing the horse industry today, such as: overbreeding; the slaughter of American horses for human consumption; the use of drugs for non-therapeutic purposes in racing and other competitions; and the soring of Tennessee Walking Horses."

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