Bulletin Board: 02/02

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USDA Sets Transport Rules For Slaughter Horses
The U.S. Department of Agriculture adopted rules in December to regulate the transport of horses to slaughter, subjecting such transport to federal regulation for the first time.

Shippers must provide horses with water, food and rest before loading, and they can’t be shipped for longer than 28 hours without being off-loaded for six hours. They must be checked every six hours to make sure no horse has fallen or become physically distressed.

Stallions and aggressive horses must be separated. There must be enough room for the horses’ well-being, and doors/ramps must allow safe loading and unloading.

The rules prohibit the transport of horses under six months or horses that are severely sick, injured or blind in both eyes.

The owner/shipper must certify each horse’s fitness to travel. The regulations authorize a civil penalty. The rules will still allow the use of double-deck cattle trailers for another five years, and full-term pregnant mares can also be shipped.

The American Horse Council has issued a statement supporting the regulations. Some other organizations concerned with this issue, including Equine Protection Network, are not in favor of them because: Double-deck trucks can still be used; the shipper, instead of a veterinarian, will determine if a horse is fit to ship or not; and civil penalties may be more difficult to enforce than criminal ones.

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New AQHA Ranch Horse Division
The American Quarter Horse Association introduced a new division January 1 centered on the talents of a working stock horse called the Versatility Ranch Horse competition.

There will be classes in ranch riding (a group class that shows working gaits); ranch trail (with obstacles); ranch cutting (cutting and penning one cow from a herd); working ranch horse (with a reining pattern and working one cow); and ranch conformation.

The divisions will include open — for owners, family members or employees of the owner — and youth. Hoof polish, braided/banded manes and tail extensions aren’t allowed in the competition. Ear trimming and silver on tack is discouraged.

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That’s A Lot Of Satin Ribbon
Hodges Badge Co. uses 12 million yards of satin ribbon each year to make rosettes, flat ribbons and neck ribbons. It takes a yard of ribbon to make just 6” of pleating for a rosette. Four generations of Hodges family members have been running the company for 80 years. It now has two sites, in Missouri and Rhode Island, with 150 employees.

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MiracleCorp Buys White Horse Trading
MiracleCorp of Australia purchased Ashland Partnership Ltd., better known as the White Horse Trading Co., last summer. White Horse includes the brand names of Grooma, ManeMaster, Sierra fly spray, AiRider pads, NickerSnax, EasyWormer, Effol hoof care, Effox leather care and EquiDae books.

MiracleCorp is based in Dayton, Ohio, and is moving the White Horse products into that facility. White Horse, formerly of Portland, Ore., has been making equine products for three decades. MiracleCorp, which distributes products in 31 countries, was founded in 1987. It makes the Miracle Coat line of grooming products and has been licensed by OXO to make a Good Grips line grooming tools. For further information, see the Internet sites www.grooma.com or www.miraclecorp.com.

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Cutting, Reining Futurity Prizes Grow
When Buster Welsh won the first National Cutting Horse Association Futurity on Money’s Glo in 1962, he took home $4,131.25 in prize money after beating 36 horses. The December 2001 version offered a top prize of $200,000, which Ronnie Rice of Buffalo, Texas, earned aboard San Tule Freckles in a field of 569 horses.

Actually, the Rice family collected $517,600 in that one class since Ronnie Rice and his son Tag placed 1-2-4-9. The event this year in Fort Worth, Texas, lasted 20 days and had 1,450 horses competing in several divisions for $2,747,000 in purses.

Also in December, RR Star was the first American Paint Horse to win the National Reining Horse Association Futurity. First place also went to a foreign rider for the first time. The three-year-old sorrel overo bested 445 horses in the open division to earn $150,000 and was ridden by Andrea Fappani of Italy, who trains in Oregon. The event, first held in 1966, drew 1,800 horses and had $1.3 million in purses.