Soring Arrests Include First Farrier

Numerous arrests, court rulings, failed tests and proposed congressional action are fueling the fire for ending this illegal practice

A number of arrests were made earlier this spring and summer of horse trainers and co-workers suspected of soring and animal cruelty. Then in early June, a farrier was arrested for the first time in conjunction with ongoing state and federal soring investigations.

The arrest affidavit for Blake Primm of Louisville, Tenn., states the farrier dealt with a “pressure-shoeing package,” a heavy-layered pad package that is attached with nails to a horse’s hooves. Charges are still pending in regard to Primm being involved with the illegal application of caustic chemicals and devices to the hooves and legs of Tennessee Walking Horses.

His arrest sheet states that a blue epoxy or similar material was placed between the foot and the first of several pads used in the shoeing package. While this is not a concern when silicone, rubber or another material is used to fill the cup of the foot, the sole was likely trimmed very thin and the excessive material applied between the hoof and pad was allowed to set up. When the excess material is not allowed to be pushed out the back of the foot before it hardens, it can lead to illegal pressure shoeing.

76% Of Horses Failed

Several months ago, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that 76% out of 190 tested horses were found to be positive for prohibited substances at the 2012 Tennessee Walking Horse Celebration in Shelbyville, Tenn. Yet this was an event where several Tennessee Walking Horse groups maintained that only…

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Frank Lessiter

Frank Lessiter has spent more than 50 years in the agricultural and equine publishing business. The sixth generation member to live on the family’s Centennial farm in Michigan, he is the Editor/Publisher of American Farriers Journal.

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