Congress Moves to Restore Ban on Animal Crush Videos

Washington, DC (May 26, 2010) – Members of Congress and constitutional experts testified today before the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security on the recent Supreme Court decision invalidating a law prohibiting interstate commerce in crush videos, dog fighting videos, and other depictions of extreme animal cruelty.  (Crush videos portray scantily clad women in stilettos, or even their bare feet, literally crushing, stomping on, or impaling small, helpless animals to satisfy sadistic viewers with a bizarre sexual fetish.)

When this law was passed in 1999, at the request of prosecutors, the market for crush videos quickly dried up.  The Supreme Court took up the case of an individual challenging his conviction for selling dog fighting videos, and overturned the law on grounds that it was overbroad and violated the First Amendment.

Within hours of the Supreme Court’s decision, the crush video market reopened. Two bills, H.R. 5092 (with 306 cosponsors) and H.R. 5337, have been introduced to restore the ban in a way that will pass constitutional muster.

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Meydan FEI Nations Cup 2010 – Preview Round 2, Rome

Watch it LIVE on FEI TV – Coverage of the second leg of the 2010 Meydan FEI Nations Cup series in Rome begins at 15.05 CEST on Friday 28th May.  Go to for live coverage, event reports, highlights programmes and interviews.


Rome, 26 May 2010 – The 2009 title-holders from France hold the lead as the 2010 Meydan FEI Nations Cup series moves to Rome this week where the host-country makes a guest appearance on home ground. This brings the total of competing nations to 11 for the second leg of the prestigious eight-round tournament which concludes at Dublin in early August.  And it promises to raise the competitive temperature considerably, as Italy is already making a spirited come-back to the top level of team sport through good results in the Promotional League series.  Relegated at the end of the 2009 season they are fighting their way back with real determination, and a win in Athens just over a week ago has put a shot across the bows of the opponents they will face in this Friday’s top-level contest.

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Fred Whitfield & Hunter Herrin to Compete for $10k at Battle in the Saddle Match Roping

The American Quarter Horse Journal, May 24, 2010 – A match roping between Texan Fred Whitfield and Oklahoman Hunter Herrin will be held July 9 at the inaugural Battle in the Saddle competition at State Fair Park in Oklahoma City. In the Texas versus Oklahoma duel, accuracy will be the name of the game and more than state pride is on the line. The roper with the most catches will ride away with $10,000 and a pair of commemorative Battle in the Saddle spurs.

Whitfield and Herrin, both professional tie-down ropers, will rope in five rounds for a $10,000 winner-take-all purse. State Fair Park and the American Quarter Horse Association have teamed up to present Battle in the Saddle, the first-of-its-kind equestrian event. The event is owned by Oklahoma State Fair Inc. and managed by AQHA and is a premier equine competition showcasing five western disciplines. Competitors will shoot it out in five fast-paced, exciting events: ranch horse, reining, working cow horse, roping and cutting.

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Miniature Therapy Horse Proves She Is Magic When She Is Named AARP’s “Most Heroic Pet in America”

Strebors Black Magic On Demand was recently named the “Most Heroic Pet in America” by the AARP. Magic has worked with over 4,000 people. (Photos courtesy of Gentle Carousel Miniature Therapy Horses)

Morton, Ill. (May 24, 2010) – Strebors Black Magic On Demand, a Miniature Horse registered with the American Miniature Horse Registry (AMHR), is spreading a special form of magic as a therapy horse. Known to her many fans as Magic, the black mini with blue eyes was recently named the “Most Heroic Pet in America” by the AARP (American Association of Retired Persons).

Magic, owned by Debbie and Jorge Garcia-Bengochea of Gentle Carousel Miniature Therapy Horses in High Springs, Florida, was featured in the 2010 May/June issue of AARP Magazine for her heroic efforts as a therapy mini. “I am so proud of her,” Debbie Garcia-Bengochea said. “She has worked with over 4,000 people, but the story that helped her win the ‘Most Heroic Pet’ title has to do with a woman who hadn’t talked in three years.”

Garcia-Bengochea said that in September of 2009, a reporter from the Ocala Star-Banner newspaper was taking photos of a Gentle Carousel visit at an assisted care facility. “A woman who had not spoken since she arrived at the assisted care facility three years earlier began talking to Magic. ‘Isn’t she beautiful’ were her first words and then ‘It’s a horse’,” Garcia-Bengochea said. “The activities director began to cry and told the woman she loved her.”

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FEI Launches Official YouTube Channel

25 May 2010 – The FEI has launched its first ever official video channel on YouTube as part of SportAccord’s The Sports Hub. This unique internet destination and comprehensive multi-sport platform provides a single access point for a whole range of sports and multi-sport events.

The Sports Hub includes a series of independently operated sub-channels categorised by sport and discipline, making it easy for sports enthusiasts to watch videos of their favorite sports and events.

With its fully customised look and feel, the new FEI channel offers equestrian fans around the world the chance to view constantly updated official equestrian videos.

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Oklahoma Horse Trailer Accident Highlights the Need for Federal Legislative Action

Washington, DC (May 24, 2010) – The need for federal legislation ending the slaughter of and providing safer transportation for American horses came to the forefront again last Tuesday, as we witnessed another horrific accident involving an overturned cattle trailer carrying 30 horses.

At around 6:00 am on May 18, 2010, Christopher Dobbin of Missouri fell asleep behind the wheel of a stock cattle trailer hauling horses bound for slaughter in Mexico to a temporary feedlot in Texas.  Eleven of the 30 horses died as a result of the careless and inhumane transportation methods used by Dobbin, who was issued a reckless driving citation.  This unfortunate accident underscores the desperate need for quick and thorough legislative action to end the slaughter of American horses and provide safer transportation for equines.

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Make Emergency Pet Plans for Hurricane Season

TALLAHASSEE — Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Charles H. Bronson is reminding Floridians to create an emergency response plan for their animals as hurricane season approaches.  Bronson says people should not wait until the last minute to think about how they are going to evacuate or shelter their animals during a disaster.  People may need to leave their homes quickly and a well-thought-out plan will help ensure the safety of animals and the peace of mind of their owners.

Bronson’s Division of Animal Industry website (click on “Emergency Management”) links to numerous websites that provide information about pet-friendly emergency shelters and hotels.  There is also extensive emergency preparedness information for owners of large and small animals.  Some tips for people with animals include:

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Gigi Stetler Comes Out on Top in USEF Case against Equestrian Show Holdings, LLC

Gigi Stetler. PMG File Photo.

Wellington, FL – May 21, 2010 – Gigi Stetler, owner of RV Sales of Broward, recently prevailed in her protest against Equestrian Show Holdings LLC, over trespassing charges alleged to have occurred at the 2010 FTI Winter Equestrian Festival. Stetler and RV Sales of Broward have been a longtime sponsor at the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, FL, and have had a standing sponsorship contract since 1992. In 2010, however, the Winter Equestrian Festival chose not to renew Stetler’s sponsorship contract after securing her confidential client list under the ruse they were getting in line to prepare files for the 2010 show year.

According to Stetler, she was on the show grounds at the Palm Beach International Equestrian Center as a “spectator, exhibitor and participant of the horse show,” the weekend of February 12-14, 2010 and had an enjoyable show. Then on February 16, 2010, she received a cryptic email letter advising her that she was not permitted on any of the show grounds and should she come on the grounds she would be arrested for trespassing. This warning was sent on behalf of property owners, not the show Licensee, and was not defined in time and scope. After attempting to rectify the problem head-on with the property owners and getting nothing but delay and inattention, Stetler filed a protest with the USEF for the horse show refusing her entries and not allowing her on the show grounds. On March 24, 2010, Stetler was given a full day hearing, with all parties in attendance, with the USEF Hearing Committee in Lexington, Kentucky, and on May 17, 2010, the USEF made a unanimous decision in Stetler’s favor.

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One for the Record Book! Minikus and Raether Tie for the Top in $55,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix at Kentucky Spring Classic

Todd Minikus and Pavarotti tied with Cara Raether and Ublesco for the first place prize in the $55,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix at the Kentucky Spring Classic. Photo By: Lindsay Y McCall/PMG.

Lexington, KY – May 22, 2010 – Tonight’s amazing finish in the $55,000 Mary Rena Murphy Grand Prix, sponsored by Audi of Lexington, will go down in history.  The crowd went wild when Todd Minikus and Pavarotti crossed the finish line in an exciting 35.24 seconds to take over the lead during the jump-off, but when Cara Rather and Ublesco managed to stop the timers at the same 35.24 seconds the night became historical.

The fantastic grand prix at the Kentucky Spring Classic was held in the Main Stadium, site of the show jumping events for the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, with the course designed by Conrad Homfeld. The first round had 16 jumping efforts that included a liverpool, a double combination, and a triple combination. Ten riders were able to complete the first round without fault and advance to jump-off. The short course began over a single vertical and a made a sharp right turn to a single oxer before making a left turn to the oxer-vertical double combination. Riders then made a made dash to a single vertical, which they had to slice before continuing to a single oxer. Finally they made a full circle to a single vertical before galloping home over a large oxer towards the gate.

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Two Organizations Now Become One

“Now is the right time,” commented Geoff Teall, a note of enthusiasm in his voice at the prospect of having the strength and programs of the American Hunter-Jumper Foundation (AHJF) now go to supporting the similar goals of the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) and its Foundation.

Since its inception in 1992, the AHJF has established itself by creating a new vision for the sport of hunters in the United States. Now after five years of growth, the USHJA has not only established these same goals but has the resources, staffing and vision to take them even further.

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