History of U.S. equine welfare and legislation

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3 Scopus citations


The history of equine welfare and legislation in the United States is to some extent a reflection of the traditional views and background of its diverse society. In 1641, the Massachusetts Bay Colony drafted a law which forbade cruelty to farm animals including horses. The federal legislation entitled "Horse Protection Act" of 1970 prohibits the use of irritating or blistering agents on the limbs of competitive horses. State legislation has been enacted to prohibit the use of medication in sport horses, poling of jumping horses, docking of tails, and the elimination of some rodeo events in both traditional rodeo and Mexican-style rodeo. Emerging issues, with the possibility of drafted legislation, include transportation issues and minimum exercise requirements for confined horses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)391-392
Number of pages2
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 1996


  • Abuse
  • Animal rights
  • Cruelty
  • Equine legislation
  • Equine welfare

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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