The American Association of Professional Farriers, American Competitive Trail Horse Association, California Professional Horseman’s Association, Canadian Association of Professional Farriers, EQUUS Foundation, Inc., Maryland Horse Council and the U.S. Eventing Association are the latest organizations to endorse the American Horse Council’s (AHC) Welfare Code of Practice.
“These seven organizations have added their support to the 42 other associations that endorse the Welfare Code of Practice,” said AHC president Jay Hickey. “The continued support for the Code shows that more-and-more organizations are committed to the common goal of ensuring the welfare of the horse in all their activities.”
The AHC Welfare Code of Practice is a broad set of principles designed to establish good welfare procedures for organizations to follow to “Put the Horse First.” The code outlines in broad strokes what principles organizations are committed to in breeding, training, competing, transporting, enjoying and caring for their horses. The code encourages everyone to consider the health, safety and welfare of their horses in all aspects of their activities, including the social and ethical issues.
The AHC’s code is not intended to supersede an organization’s rules or regulations. The organization’s more specific rules still govern activities sanctioned and regulated by the organization. Rather the code is a compliment to any such rules and restates the principles to be followed by breed registries, trade associations, various disciplines and the horse community as a whole in pursuing their equine activities.
“By committing to the Code, an organization is reemphasizing that it supports the principles for which the code stands and that it is committed to the responsible ownership, breeding, training, competing, use, transport, care and welfare of the horse. The AHC encourages all members of the equine industry to support and endorse the Welfare Code of Practice as yet another indication to the horse community, the public, the media, federal and state officials that the industry is committed to ‘Putting the Horse First,’ ” said Hickey.