Saturday, November 3, 2012

Flaky Person Rant

Alright, I understand that sometimes things just happen, but something that really chaps my ass is a flaky person who will straight up lie to your face, stringing you along with lie after lie, cancelled appointment after cancelled appointment. I have zero time to waste on this kind of person. Do not call me crying some sob story, complete with crocodile tears. At some point in life, it's kind of common practice for a person to grow into a mature, responsible individual, capable of handling business transactions, relationships, and responsibilities like an adult. If you can't, well just move it on along and don't bog down MY schedule with your bullshit. Maybe that makes me cold, but really, who wants to coddle some near stranger with an "oh-that's-ok" attitude just so they can try to string you along in the future again? Their failure to launch at life is not my problem.

Oldest living Secretariat stallion rescued

Oldest living Secretariat stallion rescued

LOVE IT!  I love horsey happy endings :)

Oldest living Secretariat stallion rescued

Verifiable in his new home
A chestnut Thoroughbred identified as the oldest living Secretariat stallion was rescued this month from a stall where he had been confined for the past six years of his life.
Verifiable, 27, identified through Jockey Club records as the son of legendary Secretariat, was taken in by The Exceller Fund, a horse-rescue organization, on Oct. 15, after the animals’ owners contacted them seeking help, according to lead volunteer coordinator Nicole Smith.
The lightly raced stallion was reportedly abandoned on the farm of a family not equipped to handle a stallion, according to Smith, who says they had confined him to a large stall, only moving him to an adjacent one so they could clean it.
“The owners contacted me directly and said they had a Secretariat. But at this point, I just knew there was a horse in a situation he needed to get out of, and that was the main concern,” Smith says. “The people who had him were doing the best they could for him —he’d been abandoned by his owner on their property, and they weren’t set up for a stallion— so we did our best to get him out of there.”
Even before his grand lineage was confirmed, people came out of the woodwork to assist with the effort to rescue the horse, and give him a chance at a better life.
Sallee Horse Vans Inc., of Lexington shipped him for free, asking only reimbursement for the cost of gas. And a trained stallion handler volunteered to assist with his transport, Smith says.
Race name: Verifiable
Sire: Secretariat
Dam: Veruccua
Foal date: April 28, 1985
Once loaded onto the trailer, the underweight animal was taken to the famous KESMARC Rehabilitation Facility, a world-class equine sports medicine facility in Kentucky, to receive treatment; again, free of charge.
“Both KESMARC and Salle Vans were fabulous to us!” Smith says.
Once safely ensconced at KESMARC, Smith began researching his bloodlines. After supplying photographs of the careworn animal to the Jockey Club, and through additional research located in a stallion registry, he was positively identified as Verifiable, a lightly raced son of Secretariat who was turned to stud.
“Because he still has enough unique markings, and there were detailed notes about him in old stallion registries, they were able to determine that he was the oldest living son of Secretariat,” she says.
Though the once fiery progeny of perhaps the world’s greatest racehorse had seen better days, the best was yet to come!
Well-known horsemen Kentucky Jackie and Ercel Ellis officially adopted the horse from Exceller last week, and are keeping him in grand style on their 22-acre property, with a promise to do so until the end of his days.
Photo courtesy Exceller Fund
Now he is gaining weight by consuming a specially formulated pellet feed, which dissolves in his mouth, and allows him to absorb nutrition without having to chew, Jackie Ellis says.
By eating about two and a third quarts daily, he is quickly putting on weight, she says.
“His condition is looking so much better already!” she says. “This old boy is sound, and he jogs around and it’s just wonderful to watch.”
And, he possesses such a calm and agreeable demeanor that she and her husband are able to lead him around with a cotton rope. “
Ercel Ellis, the host of radio show Horse Tales, and an official clocker at the Thoroughbred Training Center in Lexington, has a deep and diverse background with Thoroughbred racehorses. The couple bred and trained Thoroughbreds for years, and when they learned of Verifiable’s circumstances from Thoroughbred trainer Lisa Molloy, the agreed right away to give him a new home.
“We just felt sorry for the old horse,” Ercel Ellis says. “Both of us have been in the horse business … and I can’t imagine a horse being confined for six years in a stall. That must have been hard.”
He doesn’t look like his glamorous father, but Ercel Ellis is quick to point out he’s a “very young 27” who gets around very well, and eats everything they put in front of him.
“He’s just a nice, old horse who deserves better,” he says. “I think he’s enjoying life now, and the way he gets around, he may outlive me!”

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Great lesson for the mama mare

I am super proud of my mama mare and my Pippa filly today :) Classy Lady was super patient and wonderful about babysitting two friends of mine today. My friend's daughter LOVED getting ponied around on my big mare, and she didn't want to get off to let her dad ride or to even go home! Classy Lady was a doll for both of them. Pippa pony was a trooper today with the changes I made down at the barn. Poor baby lost her stall because I converted it into round roll storage, so she's getting moved to one of the new stalls. She took it all in stride, and she's just so darn smart! I love that baby :)

New Boarder!

We are welcoming Manolo and his mom on Tuesday! Manolo will be here for two months for reconditioning. We'll start off by lunging, adding hillwork, and working under saddle in the arena doing lower level dressage.

Busy Sunday :)

Having a decent day :) Space in barn converted and ready to receive our reserved round rolls finally! I met with a new short term boarder who is bringing her TB over for reconditioning for two months. Now a friend and his daughter are coming over to ride the mama mare and hang out a little with Mark and myself, and I'm going to end the day with a ride on the big, dark monster I think :) May or may not work the babies depending on how much daylight I have.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

West Nile Virus Report: WNV Rears Its Ugly Head

By  CBS NEWS/ August 24, 2012, 4:14 PM

What's making the 2012 West Nile virus outbreak the worst ever?

(CBS News) The West Nile virus outbreak of the summer of 2012 is on track to be the worst ever in the United States. Health officials said earlier this week that there have been 1,118 reported cases of the disease reported in 38 states, including 41 deaths.
Forty-seven states have seen some sort of West Nile virus activity, be it in people, birds or mosquitoes; the only exceptions are Alaska, Hawaii and Vermont. Since the first time West Nile Virus was detected in 1999, there has never been as many reported cases through the third week in August.
Dr. Dr. Lyle Peterson, director of the division of vector-borne infectious diseases at the Centers for Disease Control, told reporters on Wednesday that the country is in the midst of "one of the largest West Nile outbreaks ever seen."
But why is that? Why are some areas, such as Dallas County in Texas, being hit especially hard? 
Texas accounts for about half of cases in the entire country. Dallas County alone has 270 cases of West Nile virus, with 11 deaths. Previously, from 2003 through 2011, Dallas County only saw 10 total West Nile deaths.
"We don't really know why it's worse this year than in previous years" Peterson said Wednesday. However he noted that the unseasonably hot weather from the mild winter and early spring and summer may play a role.
Three experts interviewed by HealthPop agree that this year's weather is likely a driving force in the current outbreak.
Dr. David J. Dausey, chair of the public health department at Mercyhurst University in Erie, Pa. and director of the Mercyhurst Institute for Public Health, said higher temperatures and fluctuations between rainfall and drought provide ideal conditions that have biological impact on mosquitoes, thereby increasing the chances of a West Nile outbreak.
He contends that the mild winter the country experienced, followed by the early spring, extended the mosquito season past when they typically would have died in the winter. That allowed mosquitoes to repopulate themselves quickly come spring. Also, for a spring and summer that's seen high temperatures and drought across the country, the warm weather speeds up the life-cycle of the mosquito, allowing them to reach a biting age quicker, Dausey said.
High temperatures also speed up the multiplication of West Nile virus within a mosquito, said Dausey, and humidity actually stimulates them to bite. At the same time, high temperatures are driving birds into populated, urban areas in search of water, with the mosquitoes following them closely behind. All these conditions, he said, may be contributing to the 2012 West Nile virus outbreak.
"For us to sit around and say it's not weather, is I think, foolish."
But why is Texas experiencing such an influx in cases?
"Well in Texas, the severity of the drought was probably greater than anywhere else in the United States," said Dr. B. Graeme Lockaby, associate dean of research and professor at the School of Forestry & Wildlife Sciences at Auburn University in Alabama. His team just received a $240,000 grant to study the link between poor water quality and increases in the mosquito populations responsible for West Nile Virus, known as the Culex mosquito. He hopes the research will lead to improvements in risk prediction models for a West Nile outbreak.
Lockaby said during a drought, there is a greater likelihood to have polluted water because, as water evaporates, pollutants remain. Therefore in an area like Texas where there are ponds and urban streams that may be polluted to begin with, the water reduction and subsequent pollutant and sewage increases stimulate growth of nutrient-rich bacteria that provide conditions where Culex mosquitoes thrive.
Dausey concurs, noting that on the surface it may look like there's less dry water. But underground sewers and catch basins that contain stagnant water also provide the nutrient-rich conditions mosquitoes seek. He also speculates that the economic and housing crisis may play a role in some urban areas, if people have abandoned homes with swimming pools or other sources of stagnant water, allowing mosquitoes to breed.
What may be more frightening is that drought conditions may also lead to an increase in other mosquito vector-diseases, said Lockaby.
Dausey agreed that in the future Americans may see malaria resurface, for which the country is likely unprepared. He said officials should have been able to predict a West Nile virus outbreak this year because of this interaction between mosquito biology and the weather, and preventative efforts should have been in place all year.
"Everyone is caught off guard," Dausey said of the outbreak. "To me, it's not a big shocker at all."
Dr. Clifford Bassett, an allergist and immunologist in New York City who is also a clinical assistant professor of medicine, at NYU Langone School of Medicine, highlights that New York City has a program in place to monitor mosquito and West Nile virus trends each year.
The 2012 Mosquito Surveillance and Control Plan includes spraying areas of New York City that previously had been at high-risk for disease transmission and using outbreak data from previous years to come up with surveillance models and other plans with a primary emphasis on prevention
"Although mosquitoes are most active in New York City from May through October, our strong mosquito prevention, surveillance and control efforts are year-round activities," the city's Health Department wrote of the program.
"And it works, because we're doing better than other areas," said Bassett, who researchers mosquitoes as part of his allergy practice, which treats people who are allergic to insect bites.
Bassett emphasized the call that health officials have been making for Americans to wear insect repellants with an EPA-registered active ingredient such as DEET.
He said compliance with this advice is problematic because some Americans might not take their risk seriously, given that 80 percent of people infected won't show any symptoms while the other 20 percent may experience a form of the disease that presents as fever and flu-like symptoms.
But the major risk lies in the one in 150 people with West Nile will develop severe neuroinvasive illnesses that may lead to meningitis, encephalitis, paralysis, coma and death. Bassett said by taking measures such as wearing the insect repellant or wearing long clothes at dusk and dawn during prime mosquito-bite hours, people may greatly reduce their risk this summer during mosquito season. 
That's especially important because the season, which typically ends in September, has yet to even peak.
"We're not out of the woods yet," Bassett said.

Stubben Saddle Trial

So, I've had this Stubben Tristan saddle here on trial for a few days, and I REALLY like it. It fits Captain better, it fits my hiney better, and the only thing I don't like about it are the billets. It's in decent condition, but will probably need reflocking in a year or two, and it desperately needs to have its leather conditioned and cleaned. However, it's reasonably priced and they might come down in price some if I make an offer. Now if I could just get my Albion sold, I'd be set.


"He has a small penis and is compensating with a fancy car. However, he must also have no balls, as is evidenced by his slow speed." This is the most hilarious attempt at male emasculation I've ever seen.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Pippa loaded!

MY FILLY WAS AMAZING AT LOADING TODAY!!!! I pulled my Pippa pony out to do some loading practice today. SHE KILLED IT! It was great to work with her in a low stress, no hurry situation, and she figured it out by herself :) For today, I took out the middle divider and opened all the head doors and side doors. She was a little anxious at first, having probably remembered how much more stressful it was last time (damn ponies are too smart and stubborn sometimes), but we just worked through it. I just perched on the edge of the opening for the side door and waited with a grain bucket as reward, and let her sort it out. About 10 minutes later, she popped on all by herself! Lots of praise, lots of shoulder scratching, and grain bucket :) I let her eat about 1/3 to 1/2 of it (just grabbed a pound or so), and then walked off. Repeated this procedure about 6 or 7 more times until she was quite comfortable just walking on and off! I am SO PROUD of my Pippa girl, and she got plenty of cookies afterward. She even managed to tolerate a fly spray lesson afterward! My Pippa pony = da bomb dot com. :D

Friday, October 5, 2012

Upcoming Shows

So, I just need to get it in gear and take the big man to a few of these. Particularly some of the ones at Dreamweaver since they're local. Paula who runs Dreamweaver is a doll and so helpful, so I need to just get my hiney in gear and go do it.

October 6, 2012Poplar PlaceHamilton, GASchooling
October 13, 2012New ClassicGainesville, GASchooling
October 20, 2012Red Horse StablesBowdon, GASchooling
October 20, 2012Wilson FarmsAlpharetta, GASchooling
October 20-21, 2012 Poplar PlaceHamilton, GARecognized
October 27, 2012Dreamweaver StablesPinson, ALHalloween Fun Day
November 3, 2012Poplar PlaceHamilton, GASchooling
November 10, 2012Dreamweaver StablesPinson, ALSchooling
November 10, 2012New ClassicGainesville, GASchooling
November 17, 2012Red Horse StablesBowdon, GASchooling
November 17-18, 2012Poplar PlaceHamilton, GARecognized
December 8, 2012Poplar PlaceHamilton, GASchooling
December 15, 2012Red Horse StablesBowdon, GASchooling

Schooling Horse Nomenclature

I think most schooling barns have at least one of these :) This has been a graphic being frequently reposted on Facebook lately, and I still think it is cute.

Inspiration to Succeed

You Are What You Eat

Captain needs to, too....

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Charles de Kunffy quote

"To be an equestrian in the classical sense is not just to be a rider. It is a position in life." --Charles de Kunffy

Good Quote

"You know you're a horse person when you have nothing in your pockets but treats."


Monday, October 1, 2012

Deworming Studies

The general gist of the study is this: instead of deworming based on a fecal count, deworm not so frequently as to promote parasite resistance, but deworm at least every six months or less to keep Strongylus vulgaris under control. If you deworm on a longer schedule, as in every 4-6 months instead of a more aggressive 2 month schedule, it will control the parasites but not be as likely to promote such strong parasite resistance in other varieties. This is exactly why I keep my furkids on a rotational worming schedule of every 4-6 months, and I usually alternate between Safeguard, Pyrantel Palmoate, and Quest Plus (you need to be careful with Quest Plus, though, because it really cleans their pipes and you have to be careful with dosing so as to not overdose and give them diarrhea).

S. vulgaris, Selective Deworming Association Studied

by: University of Kentucky College of Agriculture
September 28 2012, Article # 20685

Results from a recent study performed on American and Danish horses identified an association between selective treatment and occurrence of the most pathogenic (capable of producing disease) parasite, Strongylus vulgaris, said Martin Nielsen, DVM, PhD, EVPC, assistant professor in the Department of Veterinary Science at the Gluck Equine Research Center.

In the study, presence of S. vulgaris was significantly associated with the time elapsed since a horse's most recent deworming. Frequent anthelmintic treatments tend to eliminate S. vulgaris completely.

Q: What is Strongylus vulgaris? 
A: Strongylus vulgaris is also referred to as the bloodworm. Its life cycle is characterized by extensive larval migrations in the mesenteric arteries, which can cause significant damage and result in painful colic. The lesions can involve ischemia (lack of blood flow) and infarction (localized tissue death resulting from obstructed blood supply to the affected site) of intestinal segments, which invariably is fatal for the horse. This parasite's prevalence used to be almost 100%, but decades of intensive treatment have lowered the occurrence to negligible levels. 
Q: What is selective treatment? 
A: Selective therapy is a widely recommended parasite control strategy. The principle is to perform fecal egg counts from all horses on a given farm and then treat those animals that exceed a predetermined threshold value. Studies have clearly illustrated that adult horses are capable of maintaining consistent egg count levels over time. As a majority of horses will maintain low or moderate egg counts, a considerable share of horses can be left untreated while maintaining a high overall reduction of the egg output. This markedly lowers the treatment intensity and therefore reduces the selection pressure for anthelmintic resistance. In countries where dewormers are available on prescription only, selective therapy is widely used.

The study involved 991 horses representing 53 different horse farms in Denmark and Central Kentucky. The data were subdivided based on whether farms used selective therapy as a treatment strategy and the time since the most recent deworming. The Danish results indicated a possible association between selective therapy use and S. vulgaris occurrence in both individual horses and at horse farms in Denmark.

"We found S. vulgaris on Danish farms representing both parasite control approaches, but the prevalence was significantly different," Nieslen said.

The overall S. vulgaris prevalence in Denmark was found to be approximately 12%. Farms basing parasite control on selective therapy had twice as much S. vulgaris as farms not basing anthelmintic treatments on fecal egg counts. Stud farms and training stables using selective therapy were particularly at risk of harboring S. vulgaris, which might be due to considerably higher traffic and the presence of young horses susceptible to parasite infection, Nielsen said.

However, when the most recent anthelmintic treatment had occurred less than six months ago, horses were significantly less likely to harbor S. vulgaris.

The parasite's six-month prepatent (incubation) period might explain this relation, he added. If treatment occurs within the prepatent period, the lifecycle can be interrupted effectively.

While the mean time since the most recent deworming was more than eight months on the Danish farms, the Kentucky farms were treating much more frequently, with the most recent deworming occurring about three months prior to the study. This likely explains why S. vulgaris was not encountered in any of the U.S. horses.
According to Nielsen, the possible reemergence of S. vulgaris in Danish horse establishments is most likely due to the current prescription-only restrictions of anthelmintic usage. This has lowered the treatment intensity dramatically and has led a majority of farms to adopt the selective therapy method. These regulations were introduced to encourage veterinary involvement in deworming programs and reduce further development of anthelmintic resistance. It appears to be an unforeseen consequence that we see S. vulgaris again.

"The good news is that this parasite is still fully sensitive to anthelmintic treatment," Nielsen said. "Anthelmintic resistance is a problem in other parasites infecting the horse: the cyathostomins (small strongyles) and the roundworm, Parascaris equorum."

According to Nielsen, the intensive treatment regimens commonly practiced on many American establishments on one hand appear to prevent S. vulgaris transmission, but on the other hand have also caused high levels of anthelmintic resistance in cyathostomins and P. equorum.

"We cannot completely avoid anthelmintic resistance unless we don't perform any treatment at all," he said.
Reduced treatment intensity, as represented by the selective treatment regimen, will still select for drug resistant parasites, but at a much lower rate.

However, the sparse treatment most commonly performed on Danish horse farms might pose a potential risk to equine health, Nielsen said.

"Overall, these results strongly indicate that the choice of anthelmintic treatment regimen represents a trade-off between anthelmintic resistance and S. vulgaris, which are both two undesired outcomes," he said.

Nielsen said parasite control should not be based upon just one potential parasitic risk but all parasites that might threaten equine health. Based on these study findings, Nielsen recommends applying a basic foundation consisting of one to two yearly anthelmintic treatments to all horses. This is likely to reduce the occurrence of S. vulgaris and can still be combined with selective therapy performed at other times of the year.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Horse Camping!

So, horse camping was fun. Deb Sims and I packed up two of our babies and hauled to Wind Creek, but we knew our trip would be cut short by the rain. We got in five hours of riding, plus did some naughty riding on a pier where we weren't supposed to be in the dark. I think we pissed off the fishermen at the end of the pier, and they never looked up or acknowledged us, LOL. We ended the evening with steaks, a nice campfire, and I polished off most of a bottle of Merlot. We woke up twice in the middle of the night when first a mouse crawled across Deb's sleeping bag, and then the second must have been when the mouse accepted a dare from its buddies because it crawled across my face! Happily not too hungover this morning, and we picked up croissan'wichs from Burger King. On our way home now to build a chicken coop!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Winter Nutrition Program

So, here's my feed plan for the winter. Mama mare falls under the easy keeper description. IF I can get Captain's weight up, I might put him on Enrich 32 as well, and that's a crapload less expensive than Ultium. I love Ultium products, but dear lord they're expensive. And Enrich 32 is a great feed if he can maintain his weight. Anywho, the caloric requirements for a horse on a light work schedule are 15,000 kcal/day, and about 25,000 for a horse in moderate work. Winter caloric requirements are higher since they shiver some of it off, so I'm calculating a higher caloric intake for all of the easy keepers, active maintenance, and higher maintenance horses.

Easy Keeper
kcal Food Amount & Time
750 Enrich 32 1/2 lb AM
1059 Beet Pulp 1 lb AM (soak after weighing)
750 Enrich 32 1/2 lb PM
1059 Beet Pulp 1 lb PM (soak after weighing)
17000 F/C Grass/Hay 20 lbs hay daily intake
21250 F/C Grass/Hay 25 lbs hay daily intake
20618 kcal w/ 20 lbs hay
24868 kcal w/ 25 lbs hay

Active Maintenance
kcal Food Amount & Time
1500 Enrich 32 1 lb AM
1059 Beet Pulp 1 lb AM (soak after weighing)
1455 Alf Pellets 1.5lb PM (added to soaked beep)
438.5 Flax 1/2c AM
1500 Enrich 32 1 lb PM
1059 Beet Pulp 1 lb PM (soak after weighing)
1455 Alf Pellets 1.5lb PM (added to soaked beep)
438.5 Flax 1/2c AM
17000 F/C Grass/Hay 20 lbs hay daily intake
21250 F/C Grass/Hay 25 lbs hay daily intake
25905 kcal w/ 20 lbs hay
30155 kcal w/ 25 lbs hay

Harder Keeper
30kcal Food Amount & Time
5400 Ultium 3lbs AM
1059 Beet Pulp 1 lb AM (soak after weighing)
1455 Alf Pellets 1.5 lb AM (added to soaked beep)
700 Rice Bran 1/2 lb  AM
438.5 Flax 1/2 cup AM
5400 Ultium 3lbs PM
1059 Beet Pulp 1 lb PM (soak after weighing)
1455 Alf Pellets 1.5 lb PM (added to soaked beep)
700 Oil 1/2 lb PM
438.5 Flax 1/2 cup PM
17000 F/C Grass/Hay 20 lb free choice hay
21250 F/C Grass/Hay 25 lb free choice hay
35105 kcal w/ 20 lb free choice hay
39355 kcal w/ 25 lb free choice hay

Tuesday, September 25, 2012



Great article about eggs!

The short version: Free range eggs are less likely to have salmonella than battery-laid eggs at the grocery, not as much junk (antibiotics, hormones, steroids) in them either, and nutritional differences are rather significant. See excerpt below:

Nutrient Differences in Conventional Eggs Compared to Free Range Eggs

The comparison between conventional battery-raised eggs and free ranges eggs is stunning. Mother Earth News had free ranges eggs tested to see what their nutrient levels are and compared the results to the official USDA data for commercial eggs.
The results varied from farm to farm, but the average free range egg results showed:
  • 1⁄3 less cholesterol
  • 1⁄4 less saturated fat
  • 2⁄3 more vitamin A
  • 3 times more vitamin E
  • 7 times more beta carotene
  • 21 times more omega-3 fatty acid
Keep in mind that these eggs were from hens that Mother Earth News considers legitimately free range. They spend all or most of their lives outdoors, roosting in trees if they choose. This is not what is usually meant by free range eggs in supermarkets. Usually, those eggs are from chickens that can hardly be distinguished from battery-raised ones. The requirements for the free range label are laughable, with only limited access to the outdoors—and that does not mean pasture—and often nearly as crowded as those labeled battery-raised. As often as not, the outdoors that supermarket "free range" birds see has no grass, but only concrete under their feet, and no real space to roam.

Lunging Babies

Babies' New Tricks :)

What a day! First, I ended up working some babies. This was not planned, but it was good for them :) Pippa and Queen both did some learning on the lunge today, about 20 minutes apiece.

Queenie and Pippa were also introduced to cordless clippers today. Whisker clipping was not entirely successful... but I did get a bridle path clipped on Queen. She wasn't entirely thrilled, but she tolerated it. Both are ok with the clippers being on, both are ok with the device touching them on the shoulder, but neither are quite ok with getting their whiskers done just yet... I think it tickles too much. Captain and Classy Lady, however, treated the clipping idea like it was old hat and are freshly dewhiskered :)

After that, Captain and Classy Lady both did some arena work and then hacked out afterward. I am loving the big, dark monster :) After hosing off some sweaty ponies, went to Home Depot with Carin and had fun picking out herbs for her new pallet herb garden! I am excited to see how hers turns out, and interested in doing one of my own! Last but not least, met a potential new boarder tonight who seems pretty cool. Keeping my fingers crossed and hoping for a new riding buddy since she also does dressage.


The truth will set you free; but first, it will piss you off.


I really, really, REALLY want to make one of these for Captain!!!

Sunday, September 23, 2012


Good luck, CRF M&M Biscotti

Such an eventful day so far! My Cookie donkey is so upset, her baby, CRF M&M Biscotti, has a wonderful new home with Charmie Eddington at our friend Deb Sims's farm. Charmie and her husband James picked up our Biscotti this morning and transported him home.

After they left with their new baby, Carin and I went for a nice long ride on Classy Lady and Captain. Lots of walking and trotting, lots of hill work, and probably a good 8 miles worth of terrain covered. Captain forgot he was not a racehorse only once, and overall was a very good boy :) He just doesn't want his mare leaving him behind! His gimpy butt actually passaged and piaffed his way up the trail when I wouldn't let him take off after Classy Lady... For an old man, I am impressed with his moves.



full blooded german sheperds - $150 (pell city)

Date: 2012-09-23, 2:00PM EDT [Errors when replying to ads?]

full blooded german shepered puppies for sale $100.00 with out papers $150.00 with papers for more information please call Marie Burton
205-338-0812 or 205-362-3852 if no answer please leave a message thank you 

Full blooded? While I am aware that this is a common slang term, it makes me think of stupid questions, such as "Well, do you think it's body could be half filled with blood instead of fully filled with blood? Of course it is full of blood." But then, the answer is still obvious... And then this bullshit of $100 without papers and $150 with papers... they're either papered or they aren't, aren't they? They're either registered, or they're not? You really charge an extra $50 just to be able to have the documentation? At any rate, the price and the ad show this person to be a backyard breeder anyway. A good bloodline with a breeder that culls for bad traits and spays/neuters pet quality animals will demand a price appropriate for what they have. This sounds like yet another backyard breeder trying to make a buck off some animals...

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Anchor's away

Yay Chiropractor!

So, the chiropractor came this morning. She says he definitely had some stuff out of whack in his neck and in his hind end, more notably on the right than the left, which we could both have expected. She says that after extended compensating for that right hock of his, he actually has a little muscle loss on the right side compared to the left side in his lower back and right hip. He also has some arthritic changes in his back, and is sore in his back. I think I'm probably going to discuss Adequan injections with Dr. E. once my budget frees up some. We just had to replace brakes and tires on the civic, and now we're going to have to get new tires all around on the truck :( Apparently my vehicles think I have money coming out my ears.

Additionally, I think I've finally got the solid reason I need to go ahead and sell my Albion if it isn't fitting him well enough. It sucks, but if he is sore partially from saddle fit and not just the arthritis, then I might as well get rid of it since it doesn't fit my butt anyway. I am little, but I have a lot of cushion to my butt, and a deep seat doesn't sit well and pushes up against my tush too much, causing me to arch my back and deactivate my core.

So anyway, that's his update as of this morning. He's much more comfortable now after she worked on him, and he'll be worked on again next month, so hopefully between now and then I'll have a new saddle that fits the two of us and we'll see how much more comfortable he might be with a new saddle and Adequan injections. I think I'll go the Adequan route instead of continuing the Smartpaks... it might end up a little more expensive, but I'm more concerned with efficacy and his comfort when I ask him to do what we do. Dr. E. told me he likes Adequan better than any oral supplements, so worst case scenario we'll try it, and if it doesn't work well enough we'll switch back to the Smartpaks.

Oh yeah, and I managed to get him eating powdered stuff :) I started adding powdered MSM to his grain because my mare gets it, and mixed in with Ultium Competition, he eats everything and licks his bowl clean. It's handy that he'll eat anything with Ultium because otherwise I'd have had trouble giving him the compounded powder feed through ulcer meds, and the paste is way more expensive. That's great for my wallet, since it is cheaper to give powdered MSM and biotin than pelleted, and gives extra budget for his new stabilized rice bran pellets.

Haha, I must remember when working the baby on the lunge...

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Horse | Encourage Horses to Pass Scary Objects, Scientists Recommend

The Horse | Encourage Horses to Pass Scary Objects, Scientists Recommend:

'via Blog this'

Encourage Horses to Pass Scary Objects, Scientists Recommend

by: Christa Lesté-Lasserre
September 20 2012, Article # 20652

Imagine the scenario: You're out on a trail ride and suddenly your horse spooks at, say, a scary-looking tree stump near your path. You have three choices:
1.     Encourage your horse (with your legs, voice, reins, crop, etc.) to move toward the stump to find out it's not so scary after all;
2.     Be patient, allowing the horse time to figure out that the stump really isn't so scary in his own time; or
3.     Turn around and go home (or take a different path) and flee that scary stump.
What do you choose to do, and what's best for your horse?
Danish equitation scientists recently investigated this question. They found that if you want to get past the stump, Choice 1 could be better for both you and the horse, even though it might be more stressful than Choice 2. Janne Winther Christensen, PhD, presented on the topic at the 8th International Society for Equitation Science conference, held July 18-20 in Edinburgh, Scotland.
"Horse riding is a relatively dangerous sport, and habituation to new objects has been known to reduce the risk of accidents," said Winther Christensen, a research scientist at the faculty of agricultural sciences at Aarhus University in Tjele, Denmark. "If an animal avoids or escapes an object and can get away from it, that avoidance behavior gets reinforced, and the animal is likely to repeat the behavior. But also, studies in other species have shown that prevention of innate behavior (flight response) can lead to increased stress in the animal. So we wanted to find out what was best for horses."
Christensen and colleagues studied 22 Danish Warmblood geldings (aged two to three years old) separated into two groups learning to get accustomed to open umbrellas on the ground. Handlers encouraged each horse in one group to approach the umbrellas using negative reinforcement (in this case, pulling on the halter and lead line). Horses in the second group were released, one at a time, in the arena with the umbrellas and allowed to take their own time exploring them. On the following day, each horse from both groups was taken individually into the arena where he could find buckets of food next to the umbrellas. On both days, researchers evaluated the horses' heart rates and behaviors and recorded the time it took for them to approach the umbrellas and the food.
The negative reinforcement group showed much higher signs of stress (heart rate and behavior) than the other group on the first day, Winther Christensen said. But on the second day, they spent less time investigating their surroundings and approached the feed buckets faster than horses in the other group.
"A negative reinforced approach to the habituation of novel objects increases stress response during the first exposure, but it also appears to facilitate habituation to the objects," said Winther Christensen. "However, because the procedure does lead to a temporary increase in stress responses, it should be carefully managed."
Winther Christensen also cautioned that her results were specific to her study and might not apply to all scenarios. "It may be that a stimulus of a different intensity could give different results," she said. "In general there is a lack of knowledge of different habituation techniques, how effective they are, and how they affect horses."
Further studies are under way, she said.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Catch rides and cantering lead changes

Such a great evening today! Many thanks to Carin for working my mama mare :) I can trust you to make her gait correctly and really make her work! It's nice when you have a catch-ride friend who also used to instruct and train. Captain and I rode out with Classy Lady and Carin and had a glorious time despite the threatening rain clouds. We nearly got rained out, but instead we did lateral work, canter changes, and even a couple of flying changes up the road (though the second one was not nearly as neat as the first). LOL we kind of skittered back and forth across the road on the second request, so since the whole darn ridge is wet and slippery when you get off the chirt, we gave it a rest. Other stuff for the evening, forecast is for a cold snap tonight! The two skinniest ones are sheeted for the evening, and the fat mare is bare :) Poor Queen would be sheeted except that her sheet hasn't come in yet :( Nothing but a blanket in yet, and it's not cold enough for that yet.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Boob proof. Read it and weep.

HN Classifieds: ‘AQHA Boob Proof Gelding – $1500′

You read that right. “He is not scared of nothing”–even boobs, I guess. Oh, Craig’s List.

AQHA registered sorrel gelding, western pleasure and trail riding is what he does. My four yr old can ride him but i only keep him in a large round pen for her. I take him to the local 4-H shows and let kids ride him who dont know how to ride, He is super gentle and he thinks he is a dog. He does not know he is a horse. He is 5 yrs old, shoed and current on coggins. He is not scared of nothing, he doesnt get in a big hurry with anything, he is a BIG HORSE 15 hands plus and weighs probably close to 1000 pounds.. he is very solid and very muscled up. I will not take any less he is worth every penny of 1500, you want find another horse this gentle and kid safe. Feel free to come out and ride him.. Please serious people only…. 662 603 2109 call or text

Holy crap hot wire

Holy shit that hot wire really punches when you're not expecting it in the middle of the night... Damn hot wire line across the gate was sagging due to water weight after the rain, and it touched my metal gate, and I touched it. I don't recommend trying it.


I don't know how some of these people buy and sell their horses like they're toys to be traded...

"I'm tired of this one, let's sell it to someone who will buy it for the most money I can get and then I'll get a new, SHINY one!"

I understand that sometimes someone will take on a horse as a project with the intent of training and rehoming it, but there are people I'm acquainted with who talk about horses they've had in the past like they were a pair of shoes they outgrew.

Why isn't there longevity in their relationship? I've had my mare for eight plus years now, and she will likely die with me and be buried in my pasture some day. Sure she has pissed me off in the past, sure she's not great at dressage, SO WHAT?

I can't imagine rehoming my kids... I understand there is the possibility that it could maybe be required some day, if I were to fall on hard times, if I had to make the hard decision to part with them in order to ensure that they still receive the quality of care they needed... but it would be when the waters were about to swallow me up before that happened.

I think of Ivan when I hear people talking of swapping and trading and selling and buying... and I think of what lengths I'd go to in order to have him back. I miss my horse. I hope he's ok... wherever he is. I still have a hard time thinking of him. Moving forward after a death has so many starts and stops.

Anyway, I just don't know how someone can say "Oh that horse was my HEART horse", but yet they sold them. CLEARLY they don't really know what the term really means.