ROY EXUM. Source image.

Roy Exum: A Dismal Horse Celebration

The Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration show rides on.


Cross-posted from The Chattanoogan

ROY EXUM. Source image.
ROY EXUM. Source image.

Roy Exum writes:

In what should have been a huge positive step of a show, one that would focus on “clean” and sound horses, it has turned instead into a vicious war of words and, with newspaper readers and television viewers watching the diatribe more intently than ever before, the shameful allegations and barbs between the Celebration leaders and stern-faced officials from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Humane Society is reaching a crescendo as the weekend events arrive.

My goodness, a “wash out” would be a Godsend for the beleaguered annual event. Shelbyville leaders hired a public relations firm but after what has already transpired leading into this weekend’s finale, no amount of damage control can overcome the arrogance and brash stance that horribly misguided Celebration officials have taken towards the government officials, the Humane Society of the United States, the top two groups of equine veterinarians, and literally thousands of decent Tennessee Walking Horse owners who today vigorously stand up for the noble sanctity of the breed.

Spectators and riders alike have stayed away from the suspected donnybrook in a revealing way and no wonder; the Shelbyville “country club,” as the Big Lick leaders are called, has been as caustic as the irritants that scurrilous trainers apply to the forelegs of the defenseless horses, virtually assuring that the only sure outcome of this year’s event is that sweeping and stringent changes will finally come to what one Humane Society official calls “the cruelest horse show on earth.”

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The coverage of this event has been of the highest standard, and would not be complete without Mr. Exum’s knowledgeable and balanced voice of wisdom. Thank you!

6 thoughts on “Roy Exum: A Dismal Horse Celebration”

  1. Thanks again, Peggy and Vivian.

    Vivian, I hope you will use the term “blood money” as often as you can. It evokes a correct and powerful image of the prices our horses pay to “win” for their owners, whatever the discipline or profit motive.


  2. I apologize but this may not be the correct place to post this comment. I am a native TN resident who loves and owns horses. I sold a horse to the now known person behind Three Angels Farm. I contacted her and I give you a direct quote Who in Tn does not support horse slaughter? The truly concerned people of Tn care about horses not the money making profiteers. Ms Kuhn I support you and your courage to speak out too


  3. I think the internet is the hero in a lot of this exposure. If people hadn’t seen the cruelty for themselves no one would have believed it. These creatures from hell “trainers, owners and riders” have all known about this cruelty for decades. Even after there was a federal law passed banning this horror being done to these horses all of the breeders, owners knew very well what their trainers was doing to these horses because owners told them to do it. So the whole pack of them could line their pockets with blood money. I doubt one trainer actually knows how to train a horse in natural horsemanship or kindness training. It’s hard to wrap one’s head around how many horses have died over the years from having this done to them over and over.


  4. It’s me again Peggy Kuhn not a surprise to those of you that get Tuesday’s Horse I think I have written a response to every article on the Walking Horses……Let’s give the USDA a Blue Ribbon for holding there ground and not backing away from this pathetic group of Trainers and Owners……The Noble Sanctity of the breed is to be natural and to be known for the beautiful creature that carried plantation owners on daily rides.Let’s pray that the funding continues for the USDA to keep up their work I know that is a factor in the inspection process…Let’s hope and pray we never have to hear about any more Walking Horse Celebration’s …….What a CRAZY name for the torturous horse show… Should be called the SHOW OF ASSES!


    1. You are most welcome to post as many comments as you like.

      It is cruel, freak show. I can barely watch the video of the performances I am wincing and flinching for the horses so much, let alone the investigative reports of the soring and beatings.

      Is Tennessee the worst state in the US to be a horse? Certainly looks like it right now.

      You can be sure I will never spend one red cent in Tennessee until the Celebration and events like it are gone for good.


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