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National Coalition of Equine Organizations and Companies Launch TimeToRide.com

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   May 1, 2013 14:49

 

National Coalition of Equine Organizations and Companies Launch TimeToRide.com
Interactive Website offers horse-related resources, rewards system and sweepstake prizes

(Washington D.C., May 1, 2013) Joining a national initiative to increase awareness of and interest in horse-related activities, The American Horse Council announces today the launch of a new Website and social media platform, TimeToRide.com.

With its design based on in-depth consumer research, the site targets moms who are challenged to not only find family-friendly activities but who are also interested in finding refreshed joy for themselves. The site is a collaborative effort of ten horse organizations coordinated through the American Horse Council in Washington, D.C.

“We know American families are strapped for time with the demands of work, school, and day-to-day survival,” said Jay Hickey, president of the American Horse Council. “We need to make it easier for families to discover the benefits of horse-related activities.”

The new site is organized into categories that include lessons and camps, trail riding, rodeos and fairs, and events and shows. It provides links to professional resources and will build a data base of providers through an interactive map to be launched in the near future.

“The horse is a mystery to Americans living in the hustle and bustle of urban and suburban settings,” notes Hickey. “We’re hoping to show that a horse experience is accessible and certainly worth investigation.” The site will deliver general information about horses and different activities, and then make a connection to local and regional opportunities.

To generate participation and enthusiasm, theTimeToRide.com platform includes a rewards system that encourages visitors to join, visit horse-related sites, and share experiences. The rewards include merchandise delivered based points accumulated by visiting equine pages on Facebook or following various Twitter accounts. It will also offer a regular rotation of sweepstakes. The first two sweepstake offers include two tickets to the Preakness Stakes and Belmont horse races.

TimeToRide.com is the first Website and social media platform generated through a coalition of horse organizations:  the American Association of Equine Practitioners, the American Horse Council, the American Quarter Horse Association, Dover Saddlery, Farnam, Merck, Merial, Purina Animal Nutrition LLC, National Thoroughbred Racing Association, the United States Equestrian Federation and Zoetis.

 

 

Link to article on AHC website

 

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About the American Horse Council

The American Horse Council is a non-profit corporation that represents all segments of the equine industry. Its mission is to promote and protect the equine industry by representing its interests in Congress and in federal regulatory agencies on national issues of importance. Leaders at the American Horse Council hope their activities will encourage individuals and other entities to support and participate in the industry, to enjoy horses, and to sponsor and support equine events and activities. They believe a healthy horse industry will contribute to the health of Americans.

 

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Equine Education

Layher Joins American Horse Council Staff

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   March 22, 2013 13:54




R.J. Layher has recently joined the American Horse Council as the Director of Health and Regulatory Affairs. His responsibilities will include equine health issues, welfare issues, and state, federal and international requirements regarding the movement of horses.  He will be the principal AHC contact to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. 

“It’s great to be part of an organization that understands the importance horses play in our country.  I look forward to advocating on behalf of the horse industry to preserve this robust and dynamic facet of the agricultural economy that it is today,” Layher said.

Mr. Layher grew up on a family farm in Southeast Michigan and graduated from Hillsdale College in 2010 with a degree in Political Economy. Before coming to Washington, he managed a Michigan State House campaign and spent time in Oklahoma, Kansas, Minnesota and the Dakotas where he worked for a custom harvester. Most recently, he was a Legislative Assistant for retired Congressman Timothy V. Johnson of Illinois.

“We are pleased to have R.J. join the AHC staff,” said AHC President, Jay Hickey. “He brings political experience and enthusiasm to this important position.”

Link to article on AHC website


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As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. The AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day.                       

The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen's associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

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Equine Education

Gagliano Elected AHC Trustee

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   January 10, 2013 07:34




James L. Gagliano of The Jockey Club has been elected to the American Horse Council Board of Trustees.  Gagliano has been the president and chief operating officer of The Jockey Club, the breed registry for all Thoroughbred horses in North America, since January 1, 2010.  He had been the executive vice president and chief administrative officer of that organization for five years before that.

“The Jockey Club was a founding member of the American Horse Council when it was organized in 1969 and we have been an enthusiastic supporter and member ever since,” said Gagliano.  “I have a great appreciation for the need for an organization such as the AHC.  In addition to promoting and protecting the equine industry by representing its interests in Congress and before federal regulatory agencies on national issues of importance, the Horse Council is an invaluable resource to the industry itself.  I look forward to helping in all these efforts.”

“The AHC is very pleased that Jim Gagliano has agreed to serve on the board,” said AHC president Jay Hickey.  “He has been involved in racing for many years and active in the legislative process, including testifying before the Senate Commerce Committee on the Interstate Horseracing Improvement Act.  He has industry and Washington experience.”

Prior to joining The Jockey Club’s management team, Gagliano served as executive vice president of Magna Entertainment Corporation’s Maryland racing operations, where he was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Maryland Jockey Club. He also served as president, MEC OTB, and group vice president, MEC Northern Group.  Before that, Gagliano served as executive vice president and general manager of Greenwood Racing Inc. and worked in various roles during a 10-year stint with the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority.

Since October 2010, Gagliano has served as vice chairman representing the Americas for the International Federation of Horseracing Authorities’ Executive Council.

Gagliano is married with three children and has a Bachelor of Arts degree in history from Providence College.


Link to article on AHC website

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As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. The AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day.                       
 
The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen's associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

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Equine Education

AHC Urges Horse Community to Take Part in USDA Agricultural Census

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   January 10, 2013 07:25



The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is preparing to conduct its 2012 USDA Census of Agriculture. Horses will be included in the Census.  Every five years, USDA conducts an agriculture census to determine the number of U.S. farms and ranches and gather vital information about U.S agriculture, including the horse community.   The census is a valuable tool to help the USDA determine land use and ownership, livestock populations, operator characteristics, production practices, farm income as well as other important information. 

“It is very important that the American horse community is properly accounted for in the upcoming Census,” said AHC president Jay Hickey.  “The information collected by the Census will influence agricultural policy for the next five years. It’s vital all farms and ranches with horses participate in the Census so the USDA has accurate information regarding the size and scope of the horse community.”

Farm or ranch owners who participated in the last Census in 2007 will automatically be mailed a survey that can be filled in and mailed back. If a farm or ranch was not part of the 2007 Census and has not received a form in the mail, the owner can go to the USDA’s census website, http://www.agcensus.usda.gov, and register. Once this form is submitted online, a survey will be mailed. Once they have received their form in the mail owners will have the option to fill out the Census online or mail back the form. 

Further information on the 2012 Census of Agriculture can be found on the USDA’s website at http://www.agcensus.usda.gov.  Farmers and ranchers should receive a Census form in the mail by early January.  Completed forms are due by February 4, 2013.
    
“Members of the horse community need to understand that even if they have a very small farm or ranch they still qualify to take part in the Census. If you made $1,000 from selling horses, stud fees or some other equine activity you should participate. If you made $1,000 from any combination of agricultural activity and have horses on the property you should participate and list those horses,” said Hickey. “But don’t forget to send in your form before the February 4th deadline.”

According to the USDA guidelines for the Census, a farm is any place from which $1,000 or more of agricultural products, including horses, were produced and sold, or normally would have been sold, during the year.


Link to article on AHC website


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As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. The AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day.                       
 
The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen's associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

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Equine Education

Jim Shoemake Elected AHC Chairman

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   July 11, 2012 13:38



Jim J. Shoemake, past President of the American Quarter Horse Association and senior partner in the St. Louis law firm of Guilfoil, Petzall & Shoemake, L.L.C., was elected chairman of the Board of Trustees of the American Horse Council (AHC) at the AHC’s annual meeting in Washington, DC on June 26.  The AHC represents the horse industry before Congress and the federal regulatory agencies in Washington. 

Shoemake and his wife Rita own a farm near Farmington, Missouri and have been involved in breeding and raising registered American Quarter Horses for many years.  He received his undergraduate degree from Washington University and is a graduate of St. Louis University School of Law.  Shoemake is Chairman of the Board of Directors of Lindenwood University, founded in 1827, and serves on the boards of a number of other charitable and not-for-profit entities, including the American Quarter Horse Association, the Urological Research Foundation, and the Missouri Quarter Horse Association.

Shoemake succeeds Russell Williams, Vice Chairman of the United States Trotting Association.  

“We are very fortunate to have Jim as the Chair of the AHC,” said AHC president Jay Hickey.  “His broad background in the horse industry, his legal skills, and his legislative experience when he worked in the U.S. Department of Justice will be great assets to the organization.”

“I appreciate the confidence the AHC has shown in me by electing me chair.  We have some difficult issues before Congress and several agencies, but we will continue to protect the horse industry,” said Shoemake.

Dr. Jerry Black, past President of the American Association of Equine Practitioners, was elected AHC vice chair.  Dr. Black received his undergraduate and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine degree from Colorado State University.  He is presently the Wagonhound Land and Livestock Chair and Director of Undergraduate Programs in Equine Sciences at Colorado State University.  Dr. Black recently completed two terms on the Executive Committee of the National Cutting Horse Association.  He also owns Valley Oak Ranch, a stallion station, with his wife Melinda.

“Both Jim and Jerry have been AHC Trustees for some time.  They know the issues the AHC must deal with and will step right into their new roles,” said Hickey.

For more information on the American Horse Council and its mission, please visit its website at www.horsecouncil.org.


Link to article on AHC website

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As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. The AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day.                       
 
The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen's associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

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AHC Presents 2012 Van Ness Award to Kentucky’s Madelyn Millard

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   July 3, 2012 12:59

 



Each year, the American Horse Council presents the Van Ness Award to a person who has shown leadership and service to the horse community in her state.  It is awarded in memory of Mrs. Marjorie Van Ness, one of the founders of the New Jersey Horse Council and the AHC’s Coalition of State Horse Councils.  This year’s award was presented to Madelyn Millard of Lexington, KY for her great service to the horse community in Kentucky and nationwide. 

“As president of the Kentucky Horse Council (KHC), Ms. Millard has made her state council effective and critical to the industry’s health and involved at the state and national level,” said AHC president Jay Hickey in presenting the award at the recent AHC annual meeting.  “During her tenure as president, Madelyn guided the KHC board and staff to develop novel programs in such diverse areas as horse welfare, equine professional education, youth support and recognition, trail protection, and legislative involvement and communications.”

One of Ms. Millard’s major goals was to educate both the general public and Kentucky elected officials that the term “horse industry” not only applies to big racing and breeding operations in Kentucky, but to all breeds and all activities.  She helped to create programs that emphasized that horse farms, whether commercial or recreational, play a large part in the agricultural life of Kentucky.  Other noteworthy programs she helped create are: Save Our Horses, which funds programs helping unwanted horses; Gelding and Euthanasia Clinics, which supplemented funding for horse owners’ whose incomes did not allow them to pay for these services; and an Equine Disaster Relief Fund to assist horse owners nationwide if they are victims of floods, tornadoes, or other natural disasters.  “These are all great programs and models for other states to follow,” said Hickey. 

Ms. Millard also had the vision to recognize that the Kentucky Horse Council was not just a state organization, but also an important participant in the national industry through equine connections and partnerships.  She believes it is critical to be involved with the equine industry at the national level and has been active in the Coalition of State Horse Councils, first serving as vice chair in 2010-11 and then being elected Chair in 2012 at the AHC’s Annual Meeting.

"I am honored to have been chosen as the recipient of the Van Ness award.  However, without the support of a great Kentucky Board of Directors and a truly outstanding Executive Director I would not be accepting this award today. They shared my vision and supported the creation of so many new programs and I share this award with them,” said Millard.
                                                                                                                         
Ms. Millard currently manages the Equine Division of Waterwild Farm, a 530-acre family-owned farm in Lexington, Kentucky.  She is responsible for 40-50 client horses, as well as twelve Waterwild-owned horses, most of which are sport/pleasure horses involved in disciplines from Dressage to Eventing.  She personally rides gaited American Saddlebreds, an off-the-track Thoroughbred or a Morgan.

Link to Full Article on AHC Website

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As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. Organized in 1969, the AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day.                       
 
The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen's associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

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New Marketing Initiative to be Highlighted at AHC National Issues Forum

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   June 14, 2012 19:36




The American Horse Council’s National Issues Forum, entitled “Reinvigorating the Horse Industry,” will feature a new national marketing initiative for the horse industry that involves ten national associations and large corporate industry stakeholders.  It will be announced at the forum on June 26 in Washington, DC, during the AHC’s annual meeting, which will run from June 25 to 27 at the Washington Court Hotel.    

“This initiative involves major organizations and corporations in the horse industry,” said AHC president Jay Hickey.  “They have been meeting for about nine months; formed a coalition under the American Horse Council; committed funding for the effort for several years; and hired Patti Colbert Enterprises to draft a marketing plan.  While the full marketing plan has not been finalized, the group thought the AHC’s Issues Forum would be a good place to announce its existence and activities to date and how other organizations can participate in the initiative in the future.”

A key component of the marketing initiative is a study that Pfizer Animal Health has completed to determine why people interested in horses do not own a horse and why they are not more involved with equine activities, either as participants or spectators.  Stuart Meikle, Marketing Director, Equine, Pfizer Animal Health, will present the findings of that study, which is intended to identify recommendations for messaging strategies that will encourage more ownership and participation.

Patti Colbert and Janet Greenlee of Patti Colbert Enterprises, which will be leading the effort, will provide an outline of what the initiative hopes to accomplish and its plans to date.  Patti Colbert has produced events and drafted marketing plans for the horse industry for some time.  She developed the highly-successful Extreme Mustang Makeover events with the Bureau of Land Management and has produced several television programs on horses.

“The AHC is very pleased this initiative will be highlighted at the National Issues Forum so that others in the industry will be aware of it.  Hopefully, this will lay the foundation for others in the horse community to take advantage of the proposals to connect horses and people once the plan is finalized,” said Hickey.

Already on the agenda for the program are presentations by The Jockey Club and the American Quarter Horse Association on their ongoing efforts to reinvigorate the horse industry. 

On Tuesday afternoon, the National Issues Forum will host speakers on “Legislative Advocacy in the Electronic Age.”  Congressman Bill Owens (D-NY) will be the featured speaker.  Mr. Owens serves on the House Agriculture Committee. 

The AHC’s annual Congressional Reception will take place on Tuesday night and the Congressional Ride-In on Wednesday, which provides an opportunity for the horse community to meet with their Members of Congress.   

The AHC’s various committees, including the Unwanted Horse Coalition, will meet on Monday, June 25, to discuss issues affecting the equine community. 

More information on these Forums and the entire AHC annual meeting, including registration and hotel information can be found on the AHC’s website, http://horsecouncil.org/events.php or by contacting the AHC.


As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. Organized in 1969, the AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day.                       
 
The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen's associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

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Marketing Initiatives and Advocacy Are Topics of AHC National Issues Forum

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   May 30, 2012 20:31

The American Horse Council’s National Issues Forum, entitled “Reinvigorating the Horse Industry,” will feature several important initiatives undertaken by major organizations in the last year.  The forum will be held June 26 in Washington, DC, during the AHC’s annual meeting, which will run from June 25 to 27 at the Washington Court Hotel.    

“Many industry leaders are concerned with the decline in horse ownership and the falling trend in public interest in our various activities,” said AHC president Jay Hickey.  “Several organizations are striving to rebuild the fan base and attract young people to the magic of horses.  We are very pleased to have The Jockey Club and the American Quarter Horse Association outline their ongoing efforts to reinvigorate the horse industry.” 

James L. Gagliano, President and Chief Operating Officer of The Jockey Club, will provide an update on The Jockey Club’s multi-year plan to implement many of the wide-ranging recommendations that emanated from The Jockey Club’s comprehensive economic study of the Thoroughbred industry in 2011.

That study, conducted by the management consulting firm McKinsey & Company and entitled “Driving Sustainable Growth for Thoroughbred Racing and Breeding,” analyzed the current state and prospective future of Thoroughbred racing and breeding in North America.  Since its release last August, The Jockey Club has been undertaking the various recommendations, including: increased television coverage of racing, a new interactive website for fans, the creation of a free-to-play game and a social game, and development of a new resource to encourage Thoroughbred ownership.

Todd Branson, director of Youth Development, American Quarter Horse Association, will describe AQHA’s efforts to bring tomorrow’s horsemen and horsewomen into the horse industry through its new Digital Oats program, a new, all-breeds youth organization that hopes to unite the world’s most active equine groups through a mixture of horse games, activities and a new website.  The program’s objectives are to introduce America’s youth to the world of horses and the equine lifestyle, ignite a lifetime passion for horses, and seek parental support for equine activities that can benefit their child mentally, physically, socially and spiritually.   

On Tuesday afternoon, the National Issues Forum will host speakers on “Legislative Advocacy in the Electronic Age.”  Congressman Bill Owens (D-NY) will be the featured speaker.  Mr. Owens serves on the House Agriculture Committee. 

Also speaking will be Neil Shader, Communications Manager of the Wilderness Society, who will give a presentation on how organizations can use social media to engage and communicate with their members and the broader horse community to improve grassroots advocacy efforts.

The afternoon will conclude with a panel discussion with Congressional staff about how the increase in electronic correspondence and the use of social media is impacting how Congressional offices hear from, and respond to, constituents in this new age.

The AHC’s annual Congressional Reception will take place on Tuesday night and the Congressional Ride-In on Wednesday.  This year’s meeting will also host the AHC’s Breed Roundtable, a popular event that brings together leaders of horse associations to discuss common issues of importance to the industry.   

The AHC’s various committees, including the Unwanted Horse Coalition, will meet on Monday, June 25, to discuss issues affecting the equine community. 

More information on these Forums and the entire AHC annual meeting, including registration and hotel information, can be found on the AHC’s website, http://www.horsecouncil.org/2012-annual-meeting or by contacting the AHC.

The American Horse Council was organized in 1969 to represent the horse industry in Washington before Congress and the federal regulatory agencies.  It is a non-profit corporation that represents all segments of the equine industry. All individual horse owners, breeders, veterinarians, trainers, competitors, recreational riders, service providers, or anyone who desires to join the grassroots efforts of the horse community in Washington are encouraged to Join the American Horse Council <http://www.horsecouncil.org/ahc-memberships> .

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Congress Acts to Protect Commercial Packers in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   May 23, 2012 12:53


Last week, Congress passed the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Backcountry Access Act, introduced by Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA). The bill directs the National Park Service (NPS) to issue permits to commercial horse and mule packers to operate in the wilderness areas of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Due to a lawsuit the NPS had not yet issued permits for the 2012 season.

“Commercial packers have been taking visitors into these parks for decades, allowing thousands of Americans to experience the backcountry of these parks,” said American Horse Council (AHC) Legislative Director Ben Pendergrass. “Without the leadership of Congressman Nunes who introduced and quickly passed this bill and the help of Senators Boxer and Feinstein Americans may have lost the opportunity to have this fantastic experience. This bill also saved the livelihoods of the commercial pack operators in the park and the jobs of their employees.”   

Congressional action was needed due to a lawsuit filed by the High Sierra Hikers Association against the NPS concerning its management of commercial packer access to the wilderness areas of the parks. In January, a federal judge ruled that the NPS had violated the Wilderness act because it had not adequately addressed commercial stock use in a 2007 park management plan. The NPS then decided not to issue any permits to commercial packers for the 2012 season until the court case was settled. 

The bill directs the Secretary of the Interior to continue to issue permits to commercial packers to operate in the parks and complete a new wilderness stewardship plan within 3 years.  The NPS will now have the time it needs to address the judge’s concerns in a new management plan without interrupting the operations of the commercial packers in the parks.

“Preserving commercial and private equestrian access to wilderness is important not just to horse owners, but for everyone who does not have the physical ability to hike in the backcountry and for the communities that rely on jobs created by tourists traveling to our national parks and forests to have these experiences,” said Pendergrass. “We are grateful to Congressman Nunes for taking action when this access was threatened.”   

Link to Full Article on AHC Website

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As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. Organized in 1969, the AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day.                       
 
The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen's associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

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What You Should Know Before Your Next Competition How Congress Can Affect Your Ability to Show Your Horse

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   May 15, 2012 16:26

 

If you are competing in a horse show this weekend, you might not realize it, but decisions   made in Washington, D.C. impact you and your ability to show your horse.  The American Horse Council (AHC) believes it is important everyone involved in showing horses at any level or in any discipline understands that federal legislation and regulations affect them.

A notable example of federal policy directly impacting horse shows is the amount of funding the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) receives to prepare for and respond to contagious equine disease outbreaks. Contagious diseases are a major concern for every segment of the horse community, but they can really negatively affect horse shows. “Remember the recent equine herpes outbreak at a reining event in Ogden, Utah,” said AHC Director of Health and Regulatory Affairs, Dudley Hoskins. “State and federal vets and organizations responded quickly to the outbreak.  Even with quick action, horse shows and events were canceled in 36 states and it could have been worse.  That incident was the most recent reminder that there is not a comprehensive federal plan, sufficient funding, or personnel to deal with contagious equine disease outbreaks. The AHC is working to change that and make sure USDA has the resources it needs to safeguard the horse industry.”

Federal policy also impacts competitors and horse shows in numerous other ways.  For example, many trainers, barns, and breeders depend on temporary foreign workers for grooms and farm hands and need the H-2B (non-agricultural) and H-2A (agricultural) foreign worker programs to work efficiently.

“Many people who participate in horse shows don’t understand how important foreign guest workers are to the showing community.” said AHC president Jay Hickey. “Without these workers, who often have years of experience caring for horses, there would be a major shortage of skilled labor in the showing industry. Unfortunately, right now we are fighting new H-2B rules that could make the program too difficult and expensive to use.”

Additionally, quarantine regulations impact equestrians who compete internationally. In January, the AHC requested the USDA allow U.S. horses to travel to CEM-affected regions for up to 90 days before more burdensome re-entry requirements kick in; currently it is 60 days. “Making this change would reduce the stress on U.S. competition horses, reduce the expenses for owners, and provide a more level playing field against our international competitors without increasing the risk of future incursions of CEM,” said Hoskins.

The AHC encourages members of the horse show community to visit its website at www.horsecouncil.org to learn how federal legislation and regulations impact them, and how they can get involved and support the AHC by becoming a member.

“Everyday we are here in Washington talking to Congress and the regulators to make sure they are aware of the concerns and needs of the $ 102 billion horse community. This is the only way to make sure equestrians will continue to have the ability to compete in their chosen equine discipline now and in the future,” said Hickey.

Link to Full Article on AHC Website

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As the national association representing all segments of the horse industry in Washington, D.C., the American Horse Council works daily to represent equine interests and opportunities. Organized in 1969, the AHC promotes and protects the industry by communicating with Congress, federal agencies, the media and the industry on behalf of all horse related interests each and every day.                       
 
The AHC is member supported by individuals and organizations representing virtually every facet of the horse world from owners, breeders, veterinarians, farriers, breed registries and horsemen's associations to horse shows, race tracks, rodeos, commercial suppliers and state horse councils.

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