Monday, September 14, 2009
Gaited Equipment Fairytale
When shopping at various equine trade shows, be wary of "gaited" equipment. There is no magic bullet - either
you learn to ride well enough to keep your gaited horse "gaiting" or you don't. So called gaited equipment,
magic shoes, and any manner of funky gizmos won't do anyone any good if they don't understand how their horse moves, how it
is built and the types of saddle and pad combinations that work to keep a horse and rider comfortable. I have saddles
of most every type and description from full bars to semi-quarter bars to arab trees to flex-tree to treeless.
A customer brought in a "gaited" saddle (quite expensive) and sold it for a much less expensive flex-tree type that
I use every day. We finally found a horse that the gaited saddle would worked for - however, a Bighorn synthetic
saddle fit the horse and rider better.
1:04 am edt
The same for special bits. Either the horse is broke and rides
in most anything - or it's not. For showring work a horse should either travel in an easy broken mouthpiece (no double
wires or knife-edge please) with less than an eight inch shank (rein to headstall) or a standard solid mouthpiece adapted
to the horse - meaning space for the tongue, comfort for the bars, and an easy curb.
Sunday, November 2, 2008
Trigger, Jr. Has A Day At The Fair
1:24 am est
Pomona, CA in September means hot - it also means the LA Fair makes its appearance. This year a live horse in
the Redwood Corral
was added to the Millard Sheets Center for the Arts
museum. I popped Dr. Keith
Zupnik's stunning spotted palomino, aka Trigger, Jr, in my trailer, beating the early morning traffic
for our part of the exhibition. Trigger played meet and greet with hundreds of LAUSD school children from all over
the county. I explained horse basics, the history of the TWH and this horse's relationship to Roy Roger's Trigger
. through Barker's Moonbeam
. Staying true to his heritage, Trigger, Jr. patiently allowed these
children their first chance to touch a living horse. Trigger posed for the newspaper and TV cameras while I presented
TWH information to the reporters. After many treats, lots of hay, fresh water, watching parades with marching bands,
floats, and dancers , the time came for the big palomino to leave his spot under the redwood trees and head home from
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Everyone in the Water!
1:35 am edt
This year's August multi-day ride took place at Montana de Oro State Park, Morro Bay, CA. 21 riders ventured
onto the dunes, through the creeks, into the Pacific Ocean, through the groves of trees and between horse-head high greenery.
Some of the group camped in tents, others in LQ trailers, a few stayed with nearby relatives and tough-campers (like
myself) roughed it in a motel with an ocean view dominated by Morro Rock. A family of raccoons ventured into camp
and proceeded to have their way with various foodstuffs. The little devils even left marks where they had tried (correctly,
but unsuccessfully) to open an ice chest or two we had wedged under the horse trailers. I recommend visiting this lovely
venue, stalls are available for reservation on-line with the national park reservation system.
Sunday, April 27, 2008
April 16, 2008
3:04 am edt
Ohio State University Veterinary Hospital in Columbus, Ohio was the venue for the first Sound Horse Conference on
April 11-12, 2008. I attended on Friday, but couldn't stay for Saturday(had to get ready for a show on Sunday).
The information and available technologies to eradicate soring were impressive. Of special interest - Dr.
Haussler's Algometry Study, Dr. Turner's Thermography, Mr. Burke's PainTrace and Dr. Turner's Digital Radiography.
Please take a look at www.soundhorseconference.com
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
The Horse Protection Act
2:00 am edt
Each year, for thirty years, Invicta Farms hoped for improvements in the eradication of soring the gaited horse.
Perhaps the 2008 Sound Horse Conference in Columbus, Ohio will engender belief that those found guilty of soring
will be held accountable. In the past thrity years, soring methods have improved or perhaps hiding it
has. Detection that will hold up in court is more difficult and quite often the fox watches the hen house - therefore
it remains prevalent in the show world. Let's hope the newer technologies can catch up with these criminals
that have involved themselves in the gaited breeds and make it socially unacceptable, as well as illegal, for those that
sore to exhibit their horses.