Federal inspectors clash with walking horse groups

SHELBYVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Tennessee walking horse groups continue to clash with U.S. Agriculture Department inspectors this week as the industry's premier event takes place in Shelbyville.

The Tennessean reports that frequently during the Celebration, USDA inspectors have issued citations where independent inspectors and an independent veterinarian found no signs of soring. Soring is the illegal practice of causing injuries to a horse's legs or hooves to exaggerate the high-stepping gait that wins prizes.

On Monday night, USDA inspectors cited Winky Groover, a trainer who recently appeared in newspaper and television reports explaining what's being done to clean up walking horse shows.

Groover disputed the UDSA's finding.

Inspectors are under pressure to put an end to soring after a graphic undercover video released in May showed horses being beaten and sored with chemicals.


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