Humane Society says new videos document walking horse abuse

Southern Serenity Ranch Tennessee Walking Horse "Walk Hard" is shown by Patrick Thomas at the Germantown Charity Horse Show in Germantown, Tenn., in 2012.

NASHVILLE -- Three years after a prominent Tennessee walking horse trainer pleaded guilty to abuse charges following the release of undercover videos, a new horse abuse investigation is under way.

The Rutherford County Sheriff's Office is investigating allegations of Tennessee walking horse abuse at ThorSport Farm following new videos the Humane Society of the United States says show trainers applying caustic substances onto horses' forelegs to irritate them. The trainers then place chains over the inflamed area that hit the forelegs as the horses walk.

The illegal training method is known as soring and is used to create the "big lick" gait prized at some horse shows.

The Humane Society says an undercover stable worker took the videos and also collected samples of the chemicals applied to the horses' legs. Testing found them to contain salicylic acid and mustard oil, among other illegal substances, Humane Society Vice President of Equine Protection Keith Dane said.

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