Most walking horses pass inspection

May 29, 2012 at 8:55 PM
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SHELBYVILLE, Tenn., May 29 (UPI) -- Most of the Tennessee walking horses at the Annual Spring Fun Show showed no signs of violation of state or federal rules, officials said Tuesday.

Dr. Stephen Mullins, the veterinarian in charge of an industry inspection group, said problems were found in 16 of 599 animals at the three-day event in Shelbyville, Tenn., The (Nashville) Tennessean reported. But results of swabs for chemicals used for "soring," the practice of burning horses' ankles to help attain the high and long walking gait, will not be available for several weeks.

Veterinarians for the U.S. Department of Agriculture conducted random examinations, while the industry group inspected all the horses at the show, the first major walking horse event of the season.

Jackie McConnell, one of the best-known walking horse trainers, has been banned for life from The Celebration at Shelbyville, the largest walking horse event, for soring. He pleaded guilty last week to conspiracy to violate the Horse Protection Act.

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