The Virginia Horse Council is your voice for the expanding equine industry in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The Council is a not-for-profit organization formed by horsemen for Virginia horsemen. The membership and Board of Directors represent all breeds. The purpose of the Virginia Horse Council is to promote and improve the horse industry in Virginia.
Our mission is to serve as the umbrella organization of the Virginia equine community and to monitor legislative issues affecting, horsemen, horsewomen and horses in the Commonwealth as well as provide education about these issues.
The vision of the Virginia Horse Council (VHC) is to be recognized as a leader in providing broad representation to all facets of the equine industry before the Virginia General Assembly and Congress. The VHC collaborates with other areas of the agricultural community and helps facilitate communications between members of the equine industry and state and federal agencies. The VHC aspires to keeps Virginia horsemen informed of regulations and pending legislation they may impact them, and to provide educational opportunities that further enhance the industry.
Virginia horse owners, you may benefit from a working cat at your stable to help with rodent control. You will also be helping cats living outside at the Navy base in Norfolk for whom Hampton Roads animal welfare groups are seeking homes at stables, barns, vineyards, etc., in the Old Dominion. For more information, please visit the website of Cat Team 7, which is partnering with the Norfolk SPCA, by clicking here:
Critical Information Regarding the Horse Protection Act
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is proposing amendments to the horse protection regulations section of the Horse Protection Act. The proposed changes can be found at https://www.aphis.usda.gov/aphis/newsroom/news/SA_By_Date/newsroom-2016/SA-07/hpa-changes .
The Horse Protection Act covers all breeds, although violations have typically been associated with Tennessee Walking Horses and Racking Horses. The proposed changes are being evaluated by the VHC for impacts to Virginia horsemen and the horse industry in Virginia.
The Significant Changes and Impacts Identified Thus Far Include:
APHIS would assume responsibility for training, screening and licensing horse inspectors. The new cadre of inspectors would be veterinarians and veterinary technicians… (emphasis added)
APHIS would ban the use of all action devices, pads, and foreign substances at horse shows, exhibitions, sales, and auctions, for Tennessee Walking Horses, Racking Horses or related breeds (emphasis added)
Additional costs to horse shows for additional inspectors, a farrier, and record keeping
An “Identification Card” will be required for all horses presented for inspection
The Virginia Horse Council – The Voice for the Virginia Horse Industry
In 1971, a group of horsemen came together to found the Virginia Horse Council to act as a voice for all of Virginia horse people, regardless of breed or discipline. The initial directors of the Virginia Horse Council (VHC) included L. Clay Camp, Daniel V. Flynn, Mary P. Hare, Kenneth Moore, George A. Morrow, Herbert W. Stuart, and Merle Wood. Since then, the organization has grown to fulfill its mission “to serve as the umbrella organization of the Virginia equine community representing industry, breed and discipline organizations, horsemen, horsewomen and horses.
The Council serves to promote and protect the horse industry in Virginia by monitoring legislation at the local, state, and federal level that may affect horse owners and those involved in equine-related businesses. Currently, the Council is comprised of an all-volunteer Board of Directors who encompass a variety of facets within the horse industry, from breeding and training, to trail riding and agritourism.
Current President, Sue Alvis, states that “the VHC recognizes that Virginia has a unique equine history that should be preserved for our future generations. As horse ownership grows and we become a more urbanized society, along with that growth comes an increase in laws and regulations that impact our industry. If we are to be regulated as an industry, we want to have a hand in creating those regulations.”
To read more, please CLICK HERE!
Please consider Joining The Virginia Horse Council!
Join now and get membership benefits for 2016! After we receive your membership application, you will receive a Welcome Packet which will include:
*Chart of Contacts*
*VHC Scholarship information*
*Info on exciting Member Benefits*
*In-Excess policy (if purchased)*
*Ride Alert Pack (if requested)*
Business Members are also eligible to have their business listed on our Business Members page! If you purchase a business membership and wish to have your business listed, please send your business name, address, contact info, website link, and logo to Laura
If you would like to have your Business added to the Business Members Links on our Home Page (see below) for an additional fee or listed on our newsletter, please go to This Page and choose an option!
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