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Tennessee Walking Horse Soring Issue *Update post 1*

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  • That is a great article.

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    • http://www.t-g.com/story/1854528.html
      Interesting. Maybe a group of BL'ers who want to ditch TWHBEA with their lousy stance they refuse to change, and appear to be good guys while doing the same old things in dark barns.
      Last edited by walknsound; May. 31, 2012, 12:57 PM. Reason: Added to it.

      Comment


      • Whenever the TWH show industry has been caught with its pants down, they have immediately engaged in a Dance of Deception and Misdirection.

        They form a new committee, undertake a new initiative, appoint a new spokesman, swear on the family Bible that "this time for sure" they will change their ways, etc. Those of us who've been around or part of the TWH breed have seen this on multiple occations (I watched the first Dance in 1988). As soon as the "heat's off" the old ways return and it's "business as usual" within a few months (a year or two at most).

        Will this time be different? No, not really. The fact that they still sailing up the De Nile River tells me nothing fundamental has changed in either the leadership or rank and file of the TWHBEA. Unless and until that happens this is just another battle in a very long war.

        G.
        Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

        Comment


        • Yes, they should form their own padded horse association, since it will be a cold day in hell when all factions of the TWH are unified. Then maybe the rest of us can get on with moving forward in getting the breed back to what it is supposed to be.
          Not sure who is on what side, but I am for distancing myself as far away as possible from them, then they can deal with the fallout from their practices. It would be great if there were no padded horses at all, but since they are legal, IMHO it is not going to change any time soon.

          Comment


          • Originally posted by muleygirl View Post
            Yes, they should form their own padded horse association, since it will be a cold day in hell when all factions of the TWH are unified. Then maybe the rest of us can get on with moving forward in getting the breed back to what it is supposed to be.
            Not sure who is on what side, but I am for distancing myself as far away as possible from them, then they can deal with the fallout from their practices. It would be great if there were no padded horses at all, but since they are legal, IMHO it is not going to change any time soon.
            You said it muleygirl. That IS the big hurdle. Have to get the law changed.

            And indeed G. knows this dance all too well. I hope this is their last dance (with the sored stacked horse).

            Said it before, gotta say it again: Roy Exum for president! I love how people are really giving him solid info and how he really can tell it like it is.
            from sunridge1:Go get 'em Roy! Stupid clown shoe nailing, acid pouring bast@rds.it is going to be good until the last drop!Eleneswell, the open trail begged to be used. D Taylor

            Comment


            • Originally posted by Guilherme View Post
              Those of us who've been around or part of the TWH breed have seen this on multiple occations (I watched the first Dance in 1988). As soon as the "heat's off" the old ways return and it's "business as usual" within a few months (a year or two at most).
              Surely the First Dance was before 1988? My brother worked for the Tn Dept Ag doing Ag law enforcement in the mid 70s to mid 80s and I remember a story or two during that time...

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                Agreed it was earlier, but the big media blitzes came later. And this is the biggest yet. TWHBEA has lots of battle experience in this war. Now they have just added the option to pay for memberships online. I would sure like to know who this bunch is that formed the new TWSHO.
                from sunridge1 Go get 'em Roy! Stupid clown shoe nailing, acid pouring bast@rds.

                Comment


                • Originally posted by subk View Post
                  Surely the First Dance was before 1988? My brother worked for the Tn Dept Ag doing Ag law enforcement in the mid 70s to mid 80s and I remember a story or two during that time...
                  Oh, yes. The very first was likely in the mid-'50s when Sports Illustrated did an expose' during the earliest days of the BL era. Then LIFE did a full photo spread in 1968 (which resulted in the first version of the HPA). There have been others. Each has had the same long term result: none.

                  Before 1988 I was not associated with Walkers. Thus that as my first Dance.

                  G.
                  Mangalarga Marchador: Uma Raça, Uma Paixão

                  Comment


                  • Yep!

                    Originally posted by Guilherme View Post
                    Whenever the TWH show industry has been caught with its pants down, they have immediately engaged in a Dance of Deception and Misdirection.

                    They form a new committee, undertake a new initiative, appoint a new spokesman, swear on the family Bible that "this time for sure" they will change their ways, etc. Those of us who've been around or part of the TWH breed have seen this on multiple occations (I watched the first Dance in 1988). As soon as the "heat's off" the old ways return and it's "business as usual" within a few months (a year or two at most).

                    Will this time be different? No, not really. The fact that they still sailing up the De Nile River tells me nothing fundamental has changed in either the leadership or rank and file of the TWHBEA. Unless and until that happens this is just another battle in a very long war.

                    G.
                    Exactly!

                    Comment


                    • Originally posted by WalkInTheWoods View Post
                      Sorry to interupt but noone has answered my question. Do most BL horses stay shod with stacks year round or just for the show season ?
                      I have answered this question many times on several different threads that have appeared on coth during the past several years.

                      The answer is it depends, but probably more stay up on stacks year round than are "taken down" for the few winter months in which there are few or no shows.

                      In my experience, which includes almost 3 decades as an adult attending and showing in shows that have the BL horses as well as the flat shod horses, is that many, many BL horses stay up on pads year round.

                      As I have explained in the past-- for many "serious" exhibitors shows start as early as Feb. and go on through the year until the early part of Nov. and maybe even through Nov in some places.

                      You don't take a BL TWH down off pads in December, and allow it to run free in a pasture until mid-Jan and expect it to "do anything" ie- take a "good" ribbon at a show in early Feb. So many TWH stay up on their stacks of pads all year long.

                      In my exerience the only reason a BL show horse comes down off pads during the show season is if it develops a thrush or fungal infection, if it "throws a package" which usually takes part of the toe of the hoof with it, or if the horse develops bowed tendons or "comes up lame."

                      Naturally, most breeding stallions are not kept on pads after they are retired to stud, and former show mares that become broodmares are not kept up on the pads. The cost of maintaining a horse on pads is very expensive as far as farrier bills, so if a horse is not actively showing or being prepared for showing or is a show prospect being worked and marketed, they are not kept up on pads.

                      But any horse that is showing or in training or is a "prospect" is kept built-up (on the pads) and is "worked regularly using action devices -- and ofthe the soring agents as well And of course they are stewarded to make sure they learn not to move while their pasterns are palpated at the shows.

                      I hope that answered your question, WalkintheWoods.

                      Comment


                      • No one will really admit to when soring first started, but the first horse to lift and extend and travel very fast around the show ring was Talk of the Town--the only horse to ever have won the Celebration WGC stake three times and he did it three years in a row--1951,52 &53. It is interesting to note that his abilities has been thought so little of earlier in his career that he had been gelded so the THREE-TIME World Grand Champion TWH left no offspring.

                        I am not old enough to have seen this horse perform, but I have spoken to several people and had family members who were old enough to have seen him and DID actually see him perform in the show ring.All of them say his speed was amazing as was his lift and reach in front. And all agreed that every exhibitor and trainer wanted a horse that moved like Talk of the Town.

                        And that is when trainers started wanting to ad pads and more weight-- and that is probably when some of them discovered, either by accident or through purposful experimentation, that adding some "hot stuff" to a horse's pasterns would produce a "lik" similar to ToT's.

                        For those who haven't been involved with walkers as long as I and my family as well as my late husband and his family, I can assure you that there once wasn't a strict "division" between "show" walkers and the rest of the TWHs. It was very common, and my family often talked about this as did ny husband's family, for horses that were used regularly during the week for regular riding or driving, or to work cattle or even plow to be cleaned up on Saturday and taken to the shows, especially the little one-night shows.

                        Only very few horses, mainly those with the trainers in TN or the few with training barns were kept "exclusively" to be used as show horses. This started a litlte back when walking horses showed without pads or bell boots, or later chains, rollers and etc. But once all of that stuff got started, then almost any horse used as "show" horses were not ridden or used for any other thing than "showing" because really they could not be used for any other thing.

                        Can you imagine using a built-up padded horse to go for an afternoon trail ride, or to herd cattle or draw a cart on the road?

                        I believe, from talking with "old timers" that "something started" as far as the soring as early as the mid-1950s, but it wasn't that noticable until the 1960s when you had some horses on the line up at the end of some classes with noticable trickles of blood on their hooves.

                        Along with that came loss of hair on the pasterns, which the trainers attributed to workig the horses with weighted bell boots. The boots wee supposed to be there to protect the horse from "calking" or cutting the rear of its fron't hooves with its hind hooves -- but many people suspected that these boots also had something to do with the horses "reaching out" further in front as well.

                        You could recognize a former show walker by their caloused and, in some cases almost naked, front pasterns. These abuses which left such visible proof f what was happening to those horses are what prompted the passaaage of the HPA-- especially the part of the HPA that is called the "scar rule"

                        And yes, through the years there have been several "expose's" about what was going on behind the scenes-- first in magazines like Sports Illustrated and others. But what many of us thought would be the "big breakthrough" story was the CNN special report that aired in 1986.

                        Well there was some uproar and the denials, etc. started as Guilherme has mentioned. But NOTHING has ever come of this as far as real reform because each time the entrenched BL part of the show world, which obviously has a stranglehold on the largest and oldest breed registry the TWHBEA as well as most of the oldest and largest shows was able to outlast the critics until the furor dies down.

                        I am hoping this time things will FINALLY be different. Time will tell. But already the good ole boys are doing their dog and pony and smoke and mirror show that they are so good at doing. I am glad that Roy Exum is continuing to keep the issue of soring before the public with his column and articles.

                        But really for any REAL and lasting change to happen, the stacks of pads, heavy shoes, hoofbands and actions HAVE to be prohibited in the show ring and on the show grounds.It isn't just the soring that is bad for the TWH. All that junk on their feet is bad for them, too and bad for the breed's image.

                        Comment


                        • This video shows how the gait changed over the years. Also shows Talk Of The Town in there.

                          http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbZH3IbosI8

                          Changes in the riders too....seems they were able to NOT look like a monkey humping a coconut back then.
                          You jump in the saddle,
                          Hold onto the bridle!
                          Jump in the line!
                          ...Belefonte

                          Comment


                          • Originally posted by MistyBlue View Post
                            This video shows how the gait changed over the years. Also shows Talk Of The Town in there.

                            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbZH3IbosI8

                            Changes in the riders too....seems they were able to NOT look like a monkey humping a coconut back then.
                            The first three horses in that video were lovely movers who look like they were fun to ride. After Talk of the Town, it looks like it all went downhill

                            Comment


                            • I agree
                              You jump in the saddle,
                              Hold onto the bridle!
                              Jump in the line!
                              ...Belefonte

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                Thanks for clearing that up bayou-bengal - about Monty quoting Johnson about this pledge to take his breeding stallions off stacks. It made no sense.I can in no way see a stacked stallion breeding live. Maybe they collect show-ready stallions and inseminate mares, if they dont end their show careers when a WGC is earned. I beleive Waterfall Farm is all set to collect, ship or do AI.

                                RE: the video - look where Strolling Jim's rider was sitting. The video also shows the progression of sitting farther back to the crazy place on the horse's back.
                                from sunridge1 Go get 'em Roy! Stupid clown shoe nailing, acid pouring bast@rds.

                                Comment


                                • Originally posted by WalkInTheWoods View Post
                                  Roy Exum trying to figure out all the double talk. Does make your head spin.

                                  http://www.chattanoogan.com/2012/5/3...Curiouser.aspx
                                  I'm not a fan of his writing style, but I appreciate that he keeps at it and is beginning to highlight some of the contradictions.

                                  The timing of the law, and the exclusion (huh?), is inexplicable. If I had the time, I'd review the tapes of the session to see if there's any more insight into how it all occurred.

                                  I really hope someone at TWHBEA and the other organizations read a copy of "Who Moved My Cheese" and realize, in time, the breed, the exhibitors, and the owners will be better off without the Big Lick.

                                  It will be interesting to see how the trials go, and then I'm hoping enough interest will prompt Nightline to do another update. They could put together something pretty powerful.

                                  Comment


                                  • Originally posted by MistyBlue View Post
                                    This video shows how the gait changed over the years. Also shows Talk Of The Town in there.

                                    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HbZH3IbosI8

                                    Changes in the riders too....seems they were able to NOT look like a monkey humping a coconut back then.
                                    Thanks for posting that video- I coud not find it to post it when I was talking about Talk of the Town, but it is one that clearly shows the decline of the natural running walk in favor of the Big Lick. Note that none of the horses in these videos were weraring the clains that are so pupular and have been for the last 30 years or so.

                                    The earlier padded horses wore bell boots-- some of these were weighted. They were made of leather. The chains were used for workouts and in training, but the boots were worn in the ring at least through the 1973 WGC. It looks like the 1974 WGC Another Masterpice may have been wearing either chains or leather collars, but not the bell boots-- it you look carefully.

                                    The leather collars were just that- rolled leather like the rolled leather dog collars that wes stuffed with lead weights inside the rolled part. That was stitched to form a tube where the lead could be put.

                                    Those videos on youtube are very useful, and were made with the help of the TWHBEA and the TWHC becasue obviously both of these organizations can see "nothing wrong" with what has been don to the TWH through the years to acheive the Big Lick.

                                    Comment


                                    • I had a quite the dialog going with the "What a Horse" guy from the video posted earlier. My posts showed right up and he answered right back. I had to explain tail nicking and rollkur to him or her (boy those guys really do live in their own little world) and I guess he ran out of stock answers after "the horses are not in pain", because my last post hasn't shown up and I got no answer.

                                      My question was simple "why do the horses have to be shown Big Lick at all except for the whim of fashion? The best horses show brillance without it. I waiting for an answer. Guess they don't have one.
                                      Groom to trainer: "Where's the glamour? You promised me glamour!"

                                      Comment


                                      • Originally posted by Rbow View Post
                                        I'm not a fan of his writing style, but I appreciate that he keeps at it and is beginning to highlight some of the contradictions.

                                        The timing of the law, and the exclusion (huh?), is inexplicable. If I had the time, I'd review the tapes of the session to see if there's any more insight into how it all occurred.

                                        I really hope someone at TWHBEA and the other organizations read a copy of "Who Moved My Cheese" and realize, in time, the breed, the exhibitors, and the owners will be better off without the Big Lick.

                                        It will be interesting to see how the trials go, and then I'm hoping enough interest will prompt Nightline to do another update. They could put together something pretty powerful.

                                        Could it be argued that soring or hitting the horse in the head were not training methods and therefor not allowed? What would it take to introduce an amendment to the law?
                                        I wasn't always a Smurf
                                        Penmerryl's Sophie RIDSH
                                        "I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was"
                                        The ignore list is my friend. It takes 2 to argue.

                                        Comment


                                        • Originally posted by carolprudm View Post
                                          Could it be argued that soring or hitting the horse in the head were not training methods and therefor not allowed?
                                          I hope so. I'm hoping maybe one of our legally-trained members would comment.

                                          It just didn't strike me as a "loophole". More like permission.

                                          I'm sure there's more to the story and it's probably the result of years of arbitration and is viewed as a "victory" for animal welfare. But again, the timing and the verbage is so poor in the context of the issue.

                                          Comment

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