Law on horse care...

Discussion in 'Horse Chat' started by tbtrainer, Jul 9, 2007.

  1. tbtrainer

    tbtrainer Senior Member

    Jan 24, 2007
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    Just ran across this and thought it was interesting... wonder how many people acutually realize this is a LAW, and also wondering why it takes so long for the humane society here to do anything about those who abuse their horses?

    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Minimum Standards of Equine Care in Maryland - By Law[/FONT]​

    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]Maryland State Law, Article 27, Section 59 requires that any person having the charge or custody of an animal must provide 'nutritious food in sufficient quantity;' 'necessary veterinary care;' 'proper drink;' 'air;' 'space;' 'shelter;' or 'protection from the weather.'[/FONT]
    [FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]These terms as interpreted by the Maryland equestrian community and applied in Maryland State Courts, are defined below. The Maryland Horse Council considers these quidelines to be the minimum standards of care for horses in the State of Maryland only and will not necessarily apply in other states. For information regarding the minimum standards of care for equines in other states, please visit the legal website Lexis/Nexis and search on your state.[/FONT]

    Nutritious Food In Sufficient Quantity
    • Nutritious food in sufficient quality (e.g. wholesome, palatable and free from contamination, such as feces, mold, mildew, insects, etc.)
    • Food shall be provided in sufficient quantity and be of adequate and appropriate nutritive value.
    • Diet shall be prepared with consideration for the age, breed/type, condition, size, work level and quantity of equine(s).
    • Equines should score, by a veterinarian, no less than a body condition score 3 on the Henneke Condition Scoring Chart to be considered of adequate weight.
    • Equines shall have access to adequate natural forage or be fed daily or as recommended by a veterinarian.
    • All storage and feeding receptacles shall be kept clean and free from contaminants, such as feces, mold, mildew, insects, ...etc.
    • If more than one animal is fed at one time or in one place, it shall be the responsibility of the owner/custodian to ensure that each animal receives nutrition in sufficient quantity.
    Necessary Veterinary Care
    An equine shall be afforded immediate veterinary care if known or suspected to have an injury, accidental or deliberate, or exhibiting such signs as shock, colic, founder, tremors, swelling, broken bones, open wounds, inability to eat or drink, blistering as a result of fire, acid, etc., irregular or abnormal breathing, partial or total paralysis, abnormal discharge or bleeding, signs of disease, severe parasitic infestation or infection, loss of appetite, weight loss, abnormal skin condition or hair loss, temperature fluctuation, persistent diarrhea, inability to bear weight on a limb or lameness, or other such sign.

    The following is recongized as standard veterinary care guidelines for equines:
    • Hoof care maintenance and trimming every six (6) to eight (8) weeks, or as directed by a veterinarian or a farrier.
    • Parasites kept under control through worming every six (6) to eight (8) weeks or as directed by your veterinarian.
    • Annual dental check-up and necessary treatment to ensure proper and adequate food digestion.
    • Vaccinations as recommended by your veterinarian.
    • Proof of testing for Equine Infectious Anemia (Coggins Test) is mandated by law in the following cases
      • - When equines are being transported across state lines
      • - When equines are bought or sold
      • - When equines are at shows or gatherings
    Proper Drink

    Proper drink shall mean clean, potable water available at all times for all equines. Exceptions shall be determined by veterinary consultation of professionally accepted practices for the safety and well-being of the equine.
    Equines that are being worked or are in transport shall be provided water as often as necessary for the health and comfort of the equine. Frequency of watering shall consider age, breed/type, condition, size and quantity of equine(s). Activity levels and climatic conditions must be considered.
    Equines that do not have free access to water, must be offered water at least twice daily.
    All water receptacles shall be kept clean and free of contaminants and be postitioned or affixed to minimize spillage.

    Proper Air

    Enclosed areas should be constructed or modfied to allow free flow of air to control temperature, humidity and prevent air stagnation.

    Proper Space

    Space available to the equine must be usable and safe (e.g. must be provided an area free from standing water, accumulated waste, sharp objects and debris and maintained in a safe and healthful manner). Fencing shall be well maintained and in good repair at all times.
    Equines shall be allowed to exercise and have freedom of movement as necessary to reduce stress and maintain good physical condition. Space and provisions for exercise must be appropriate and sufficient for the age, breed/type, quantity, condition and size of the equine(s).

    Proper Shelter

    Shelter for equines shall have at least a roof and three sides and be kept in good repair and free of standing water, accumulated waste, sharp objects and debris. Proper shelter provides protection from inclement weather conditions (e.g. prevailing wind, sleet, rain and arid temperature extremes).
    It is the responsibility of the owner/custodian to ensure that each equine, taking into consideration age, breed/type, and health, has access to proper shelter and protection from the weather (e.g. relief from more dominant equines that may exclude him/her from the shelter).
    Protection From The Weather

    All equines should have access to proper/appropriate shelter from weather extremes. Trees and natural weather barriers providing shelter may be considered adequate shelter.

    Copyright Maryland Horse Council Home
  2. showjumper

    showjumper Senior Member+

    Nov 6, 2003
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    blimey!!! that is interesting but most of it is just basic horsecare!!!
  3. sirius-dressage

    sirius-dressage Senior Member

    Jul 31, 2005
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    You'd be surprised though how many people don't even get or don't care that this is sort of part of owning a horse. :no: Why own a horse if you're not going to take care of it?
  4. Xiphias

    Xiphias Senior Member+

    Jun 2, 2005
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    There are lot's of people that own horses in this state, that don't meet that criteria! Good Post! Andi! Cathy
  5. PonyCrazyGal

    PonyCrazyGal Senior Member+

    Nov 1, 2005
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    I've definitely seen lots of people not meeting that criteria. Thanks for posting that!

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