A House subcommittee heard testimony Wednesday on the proposed Prevent All Soring Tactics Act, which would increase government Walking Horse show inspections and outlaw weighted devices and chains allegedly used to induce pain in horses to produce an exaggerated, high-stepping gait. Opponents of the law say the industry has cleaned up its act and the law isn't needed, but proponents argue the practice of soring is still deeply entrenched. "I feel this bill is necessary to stop this culture of abuse that has existed for more than 40 years in the Walking Horse industry," said Dr. Ron DeHaven, executive vice president and CEO of the AVMA, pointing out that reported soring violations markedly increase when USDA officials conduct on-site exams.

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