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KY State Senator Cited for HPA Violations


On January 12, 2013, Janet Patton of the Lexington [KY] Herald-Leader published a report that Kentucky State Senator Robin Webb (D-Grayson) was cited for Horse Protection Act violations on two of her horses at the North Carolina Walking Horse Association Championships in October 2012.

Patton’s report stated: “Webb was ticketed for violating the scar rule, which establishes criteria for certain types of scars on the horse that are evidence that a horse has been sored and is ineligible to compete. Webb, as owner, was cited as a responsible party for two horses, Air Force One and Showstopper. Webb denied soring either horse and said she did not see anything wrong with the animals at the time of the competition. Her trainer, Donald Stamper of Richmond, [KY] was also cited. Stamper confirmed Webb has horses in his barn but said he did not recall the incident.”

Webb told the Herald-Leader: “I don't sore my horses. I love my horses, and my horses love me.”

Patton’s article revealed that “Webb has been a vocal opponent of federal legislation, filed by U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield, R-Hopkinsville, to ban the use of pads and chains, called ‘action devices,’ on horses. ‘The Whitfield bill is extreme,’” Webb was quoted. Patton reported that “at the annual meeting of the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders and Exhibitors Association in December, Webb criticized the AAEP and other veterinary groups who have called for a ban, dubbing them ‘agenda-driven entities.’” Webb told the Herald-Leader that the Tennessee Walking Horse [industry] has been “demonized.”

Rep. Whitfield countered Webb’s comments, saying that his bill “eliminates the self-policing system currently employed, allowing for a more uniform enforcement,” and that “it carries the support of the American Veterinarian Medical Association, the American Association of Equine Practitioners and others.”

Patton consulted veterinary organizations for their comments. The American Association of Equine Practitioners said “the ban is necessary to end soring.  Dr. René A. Carlson, President of the American Veterinarian Medical Association, said in June that her group is asking for a ban on ‘the use of action devices and performance packages in the training and showing of walking horses, because they appear to be facilitating soring.’ The U.S. Equestrian Federation does not allow the use of action devices in the show ring.”

Read Patton’s full story at:

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