A House committee today endorsed a bill that would impose a temporary moratorium on sanctions against non-veterinarians who perform dentistry or massage on horses.

House Bill 1763 by Rep. Charlie Collins, R-Fayetteville, would — with an amendment presented today — prohibit the Veterinary Medical Examining Board from investigating or prosecuting a practitioner of horse dentistry or horse massage for two years, to allow time for the issue to be studied before the next regular legislative session.

Under the bill, a person with letters of recommendation from at least two previous clients could be considered a practitioner.

The bill also would exempt horseshoeing, training, nonsurgical artificial insemination and the selling of medicines for horses from the Arkansas Veterinary Medical Practice Act.

The House Agriculture, Forestry and Economic Development endorsed the bill in a voice vote. The bill goes to the House.

Earlier in the same meeting, the committee rejected HB 1712 by Rep. Garry Smith, D-Camden, which would exempt certain practices performed on horses from the Veterinary Medical Practice Act immediately.