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☛ AQHA is on the right track 10-15-18

Posted by on Oct 15, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HORSE ORGANIZATIONS, INDUSTRY NEWS, REINING NEWS, RICK'S CORNER, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 8 comments

AQHA IS ON THE RIGHT TRACK

 

By Richard E. “Rick” Dennis
October 15, 2018

 

On August 6, 2014, I authored and released an article for publication on allaboutcutting.net entitled “MECHANICAL HORSE, A Horse Under the Influence of Drugs.”  At first glance this article suggests to the reader an apparatus resembling a horse traveling on rails making a series of stops and turns and acting much like the mechanical cow we see in the training arena.  However, this article is about the horse that performs, whether on the racetrack or in the performance arena, under the influence of illegal or prohibited drugs.

 

The article was authored due to the heightened awareness of horse doping bestowed on us by the main stream media and other news outlets, as well as by legislative action in the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington, D.C. More specifically, the bill introduced by Senators addresses the horse-doping fiasco in the United States, e.g., “The Chronic Abuse of race horses with pain killers and other drugs are dangerous and just plain wrong,” Udall said. US Senator Tom Udall, D – New Mexico is a cosponsor of the bill.

 

Essentially, the bill addresses the horse-doping epidemic in the United States by establishing a federal regulatory commission empowered to design a uniform, federally controlled enforced and prohibited drug policy for the welfare of the horse.  This bill mimics the federally mandated drug and alcohol – testing programs established in the 1980’s by the (49 CFR, Part 40) rules and regulations for federally mandated workplace drug and alcohol testing.

 

In response to the bill’s introduction, a group of racehorse trainers came out in support of the bill stating, “We believe it’s time to take a proactive position regarding the administration of race-day medication.  American racing has always been a global leader and it’s time to restore confidence in our game, and in our international standing” said D Wayne Lucas, a Hall of Famer who is one of the trainers supporting this proposal.  Todd A. Fletcher, another leading trainer is also on the list.

 

In my opinion, this is the industry’s attempt to police itself rather than have a government mandated equine drug-testing federal rule to do it for them, as is the case today with the Federal Mandate of certain positions under federal control.  For the record, I was in on the ground floor of this federal takeover of an industry, as well as the author of a litany of Fortune 500 companies’ drug and alcohol testing policies, including their implementation and maintenance, e.g., Exxon Company USA, Kerr McGee Corporation, Marathon Oil Company, Mobile Oil Company, and Gulf Oil Company – to name a few.

 

My background in Drugs of Abuse spans from 1970 to the present and began as a Drug Enforcement Agent, to being a contributing writer for the original Federally Mandated Drug and Alcohol Testing program, to providing a dissertation to members of the U.S. Congress and Admiral Malloy of the US Navy for the integration of private sector drug and alcohol prevention programs for use with the US Military and the  Department of Defense, operating my own drug testing laboratory, and private sector enforcement and maintenance of Corporate Drug and Alcohol testing policies.

 

Click for “Mechanical Horse, A Horse Under the Influence of Drugs”

 

Today, the majority – if not all – of the major nonprofit horse organizations including the Thoroughbred Race Horse Association and USEF have some type of rules and drugs-of-abuse prevention policies in place to prohibit the use of drugs or other prohibitive items and substances from being introduced into a horse’s system on the racetrack or in the performance arena. One of the outstanding associations taking the abuse of horses with drugs on a very serious proactive basis is the American Quarter Horse Association. The stand-out traits of this organization’s equine drug testing rules are: The frequency of the testing and the suspension and fining of the violators“across-the-board,” without discrimination of whether the violator is a horse trainer or a regular member.  Equal treatment for all.  A very admirable trait.

 

It’s long been my experience that equine trainers, for some unknown reasons, are considered by some in the industry as GODS, therefore they are untouchable or receive reduced penalties for rule violations. However, this is not the case with the American Quarter Horse Association.  A recent review of the 2017 and 2018 suspensions and fined lists include trainers for animal abuse as well as drug violations.  It also includes expulsion from the prestigious American Quarter Horse Association Professional Horseman’s listing for those trainers who have committed rule violations as well as their names being included in the Quarter Horse Journal, along with identifying the committed infraction and fine amount.

 

This suggests that AQHA’s punishments for rule violators are handed out evenly “across-the-board.”  AQHA should be commended for their fair and unbiased treatment of rule violators as well as their devotion to protecting the American Quarter Horse breed and living up to their mission statement.  If more organizations would use AQHA as their role model, it would restore member confidence that some have lost simply due to the bias some associations have exhibited toward specific members and trainers in the industry. I’d say this is money well spent to prevent horse abuse, a business philosophy worth adopting.

 

WIND RIVER COMPANY LLC
Richard E. Dennis
Managing Member
Free Lance Writer and Author
Office/Mobile: (985) 630-3500
Email: richardedennis51@gmail.com
Web Site: http://www.richardedennis.net

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