Sunday, September 7, 2008

Horse massage lawsuit

I was trolling the local news sites this morning for horse-related news when I came across this article:

Md. woman sues state for right to massage horses

The state of Maryland pressured Mercedes Clemens into shutting down her horse massage business, stating that by law only veterinarians can offer horse massage. Clemens, who is a licensed massage therapist and a licensed animal massage therapist, contests that the services she offers are different than veterinary services. (i.e. It would be kind of like requiring that you could only get a massage from your doctor.)

The state's authorities are, of course, backpedaling now that they have a lawsuit aimed at them. They are all trying to deny responsibility. One authority even says now that she can practice animal massage without a veterinary degree, as long as it's for relaxing the animals (and not attempting to practice medicine on them). Since Clemens isn't suing for money, it seems the authorities simply don't want to get involved in trying to clarify the law in court.

How do you feel about horse massage? I was skeptical when I first heard about it, but honestly it makes sense. After all, animals' bodies can't be that much different than ours, and in fact a horse's body typically does more physical work than ours do, so it makes sense that massage would help them to relax just as much as it helps us.



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