Horse soring inspection. HSUS image.

Humane Society release video of convicted Walking Horse horse abuser Davis

The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) conducted an on-camera interview with Barney Davis, a former Tennessee horse trainer who pleaded guilty to various violations of the Horse Protection Act last November.

This is an exclusive HSUS interview uploaded on YouTube August 28, 2012.

Related HSUS press materials state:

Davis served most of his one-year sentence in prison and was also ordered by the court to cooperate in the production of an educational video describing pervasiveness of the abusive practice of horse “soring.”

The practice causes intentional pain to the feet or legs of horses through the application of caustic chemicals to burn their skin, or by inserting foreign objects to the sensitive areas of their hooves. In reaction to the pain, horses lift their front legs high off the ground, producing the exaggerated “Big Lick” gait rewarded in the show ring.

At his sentencing hearing in February, Davis admitted to routinely soring horses during their training, and explained that this illegal activity is so rampant as to be commonplace throughout the Tennessee walking horse industry.

Horse soring inspection. HSUS image.
Increased scrutiny by USDA inspectors and certain approved horse industry groups at this year’s Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration in Shelbyville. Extra vigilance is being called for by everyone connected with the show.


In the meantime, USDA inspectors attending the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration are being subjected to just as much scrutiny as the alleged abusers, who are protesting citations with the help of veterinarians.

— See “Federal inspectors clash with walking horse groups“; WBNS-10TV, Columbus, Ohio; Aug. 28, 2012.

Walking horse industry leaders invited media from across the region to watch a demonstration of how an uninjured horse acts during an inspection.

It was the group’s latest salvo in a battle against the USDA, which it believes is unfairly citing horses competing in the Celebration as retribution for the industry resisting new USDA rules.

— See “Tennessee Walking Horse industry goes on offensive“; by Heidi Hall; The Tennessean; Aug. 28, 2012

8 thoughts on “Humane Society release video of convicted Walking Horse horse abuser Davis”

  1. STOP THE SHOWS, STOP THE MONEY, STOP THE PAIN OF OUR HORSES, ITS SICK AS IT CAN BE. What happen to the years gone by when ribbons and medtals were given, and a person was proud to have a lovely horse, its all corrupt.


  2. I am right there with all of you this has got to be stopped completely! it has gone on far to long.There is no way to make a horse travel comfortably on shoes like that. of course they had to be sored to walk like that because the pain in their rear end was horrendous! Horses were not made to carry their weight on the hind end…….makes me ashamed to say i live in a country that has allowed this to go on for so long all because of money…A word to all of you rich people that allowed this to happen to your horses You Can’t Take It With You When You Go!!!!! You will be judged right along with everyone else on a level playing field and heaven help you is all I can say at this point…..


  3. SOULS, HEART, COMPASSION, CARING and FEELINGS …..Not words that are in a Horse Trainers vocabulary not now or ever…..To Lana Marie this has been taking place as long as I’ve known about the TN.Walking Horse I am 53 and have been around horses since the age of 9….Walking Horses since 15 if that tells you how many years…I knew people back then that had been written up the more I spoke out the more I was told to mind my own business….I cleaned stalls, would sneak in treats and ride my horse and try to comfort broken souls…..I was threatened numerous times by redneck bubbas never having gone past the 3rd grade……Something hit me last night about Winky Groover I wonder now if he wants to be the Spokesperson since he was cited just the other day………I’m sure he let his frustration out on the horse since he didn’t pass inspection……Well I was correct in saying that I would not get any invitations to spend a week watching the behind the scenes to prove me wrong that soring has ended…….”Guess I’ll keep waiting” …To everyone that continues to speak out and Barbara thank you for what you do for the wild horses lets just keep writing and contacting anyone that will listen and let’s not forget about STOPPING the transportation and ending HORSE SLAUGHTER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    God bless everyone and Bless the Horses that can’t speak out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  4. Bless you, Peggy, for caring and loving horses so much. You are so right. These horrible shows need to stop and the owners and trainers sent to prison for animal abuse. It is so unnatuarl for horses to walk on their back legs like Davis just said.
    I practically owe my life to a part TNWH. Misty was my therapy horse nearly 50 years ago before horses were used for therapy. I was a divorced, single mom and she was my support. She would carry my 3 children , ages 1, 2 and 3 around my dad’s farm without me even leading her and was my dearest friend. Not a day goes by that I don’t still miss her.
    Now I have 8 horses and 4 are wild horses. What is being done to them as well is nothing but cruelty yet the DOI/BLM is getting by with it so far.
    When are humans going to realize that all animals have a right to their lives and to be treated with respect and kindlness ?They all have souls but some people must not.


  5. Thank you Peggy K & Barb G for ALL the ‘insight’ to this horrendous abuse of horses!! I have of course heard of this breed & how ‘they go’, but that was it … until recently. All I can say is how on earth has this been allowed to go on this long??? With so many who know, with VETS who looked the other way, & an audience/owners who too looked the other way. WHY are we hearing about this ‘TORTURE’ done to a horses legs? I am having a hard time wrapping my head around the pure distruction done to a horse…never mind the ‘beatings’ to GO like you say with ‘blood’ running?? It’s unbelievable & certainly does neet to be shutdown completely. All these guys like Davis should just go buy themselves a tractor & pound on it! They are the farthest thing from a ‘horse trainer’….all should be banned from owning or working with horses!


  6. Do you know what this guy needs and indeed all of the trainers and owners of these horses? I would like to nail their bare feet to two of the big block shoes that these horses are forced to wear, each one of them will get a set and then beat them as they try to walk down a paved road with blood pouring from their feet at each severely painful step. Remove every horse these creatures have ownership of and throw them all in prison for life. Which is too damn good a ending for these things which call themselves human. When the horse is so crippled up from this torture it can’t perform it’s thrown on the slaughter truck. What has been done to these horses sounds like what was done to the Jews in Germany during world war two


  7. Well I guess Barney Davis was forced by way of imprisonment ..And probably I hate to say this but he would probably go right back to it…..He stated that 95% of all horses have been sored I would say 98% and the rest never hit the show rings……I’ve seen horses with calluses so bad they would bleed non-stop…I cannot emphasize how horrible the industry is……It is so bad it makes me furious and sick……The whole Industry needs to be brought down……..It needs to be ban all together……The Barns shut down and the Trainers need to find an honest clean way to make a living……I have written many responses to the Walking Horse related articles because I am so passionate about the breed……..As a young girl there was not a lot I could do No One would listen back in the 70’s …..I only pray that maybe people listen NOW!!!!…My two Walking Horses are flat shod and beautiful and I LOVE them so much I can’t imagine anyone ever hurting them……..My one horse Izzy has papers with so many Grand Champions in her background and was sent to training before I ever owned her she was put in a stall very young didn’t make it as a show horse then sold and sold again and again ending up at a sale in Mayfield KY. only to be bid on by kill buyers…HOW TRAGIC!!!…Thank God I got her at the age of 4 Black Roan the smoothest ride and the best horse in the world…Stood over a man that had been kicked by a mare with a baby he fell to the ground knocked out with broken ribs and Izzy protected him until he came to….She still bears the mental scars of a training facility in the form of cribbing and being nervous. She will never have to endure the HORRORS again. So yes there are plenty of us that LOVE our HORSES and DESPISE those who abuse any innocent creature!!!!!!!!!
    YES WE DO EXISTS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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