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Alyssa Milano Wants Better Treatment for Horses

Actress calls on Congress to pass the PAST Act, which would prevent the soring of Tennessee walking horses

  • “Soring is torture,” says Milano in her letter urging Congress to protect horses by passing the PAST Act. Dirk Franke

Longtime animal advocate and star of ABC’s Mistresses, Alyssa Milano, has sent an appeal to Congress to protect horses from abuse by swiftly passing the Prevent All Soring Tactics (PAST) Act, H.R. 1518/S. 1406.

This legislation would amend the Horse Protection Act of 1970 to stop the grisly practice of inflicting pain to Tennessee walking horses through training techniques known as "soring".

The Humane Society of the United States also urges Congress to enact the PAST Act quickly.

Tell Congress to protect horses from the cruelty of soring »

“Through the use of caustic chemicals and abusive shoeing techniques that create constant pressure and pain, the horse is forced to perform an unnatural, exaggerated gait known as the ‘Big Lick.’ I am the proud owner of gaited horses and am writing to urge you to co-sponsor crucial legislation that will protect these vulnerable animals from a repugnant training practice.”

“Soring is torture,” says Milano in her letter to Congress."

Keith Dane, vice president of equine protection for The HSUS, said: “The PAST Act would make urgently needed amendments to existing law to give the federal government the tools to more effectively crack down on soring. It is time for Congress to pay heed to the thousands of horse-lovers, veterinarians and organizations who want soring to finally be a thing of the past.”

Watch The HSUS's undercover investigation into soring »

Numerous gaited horse groups have endorsed the PAST Act, including Friends of Sound Horses, the National Plantation Walking Horse Association, Carolina Walkers, United Pleasure Walking Horse Association (Missouri), and the Tennessee Walking Horse Association of Oklahoma. Additionally, the American Horse Council and several state horse groups including the Texas State Horse Council and Pennsylvania Equine Council, as well as the American Veterinary Medical Association, Veterinary Medical Associations of all 50 states, and the American Association of Equine Practitioners, endorse the bill (see full list of PAST Act endorsements).

Media Contact: Stephanie Twining: 301-258-1491, stwining@humanesociety.org