News / Press Releases
The Walking Horse Trainers’ Association’s Enforcement Initiative will begin its swabbing protocol at ALL horse shows affiliating with Heart of America (HOA), Kentucky HIO, PRIDE and SHOW HIO on June 15, 2012. The new initiative will test for caustic agents and masking agents through gas chromatography- mass spectrometry (GC-MS) technology.
Any entry testing positive for a foreign substance violation through the enforcement initiative will result in the trainer receiving a two-week suspension of their trainers’ license and all violations will be made public on the WHTA web site. ANY entry refusing to participate in the swab initiative will result in a two-week suspension of their trainers’ license. ALL violations will be made public to industry HIOs accepting the protocol.
The new enforcement initiative of the WHTA will be administered by independent veterinarians and/or veterinarian technicians. The results will be sent to the independent lab identified by the Tennessee Walking Show Horse Organization (TWSHO), who has helped administer and fund the initiative. Those results will be reviewed by an Independent Commissioner outside of the Horse Industry for imposition of the appropriate penalty in conjunction with the TWSHO and WHTA representatives. Testing and results will take 7-10 days to receive.
“Our board and our membership understand the importance of this initiative as we continue to place importance on the welfare of our horse. We have a great horse capable of great things and this initiative will prove the natural ability of the Tennessee Walking Horse. We urge all horse shows that allow Tennessee Walking Horses to embrace and implement this testing,” said President Jamie Hankins.
“Although we are extremely disappointed in the recent joint statement of the American Association of Equine Practitioners and American Veterinary Medical Association, we are encouraged that it clearly and correctly pointed out that our action device and package cause no harm to our horse,” concluded Hankins.
Any trainer or entry that refuses to submit to the testing prior to showing will not be allowed to enter the class and will receive a suspension of their license for two weeks.