October 2008

The Perfect Fit

October 31, 2008

Find the right saddle for you and your horse.

No one would step onto a basketball court to compete wearing sneakers that don’t fit. That’s a sure way to guarantee defeat. A major part of any competitive sport is having the proper equipment. Finding the right size of saddle to fit you and your horse is no different.

AQHA Corporate Partner Tex Tan offers this advice on finding the perfect fit for your next saddle:

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Cooled Semen

October 30, 2008

What mare owners should know about artificial insemination.

By Dr. Thomas R. Lenz

Today’s mare owner has more breeding options than ever before. One of the options is artificial insemination with cooled/shipped semen, making it possible to breed your mare to any stallion in the country, without her leaving your property.

Shipping cooled semen from the stud farm to the mare allows owners to control mare care and reduce transportation costs. Because the mare (and her foal) remains at home, there is less danger of injury or illness that might be encountered on a broodmare farm. In addition, mares in training or competition can be bred without interrupting their schedule.

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Tooth Trouble

October 30, 2008

Give your horses’ teeth the attention they deserve.

Make an appointment with an equine dentist!

Make an appointment with an equine dentist!

Have you ever paid much attention to your horse’s teeth?

Dr. Jack Easley, D.V.M., and equine dentist, recommends that you do.

By evolutionary design, horses are grazing machines. Their long heads and necks allow for continuous grazing, increasing the height and complexity of the tooth shape. The forward teeth, or incisors, function as grass trimmers. The cheek teeth, including the molars and premolars, have wide, flat, grooved surfaces to easily grind feed into mash before it is swallowed.

Dr. Easley says the domestication of horses is one reason they require dental care. Read the rest of this entry »

Congress Ends with a Bang

October 29, 2008

More updates from the world’s largest single-breed horse show.

By Christine Hamilton

The All American Quarter Horse Congress at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus, Ohio, wrapped up last week with an estimated 8,500 horses shown during the three-week event. Be sure to read The American Quarter Horse Journal’s full Congress coverage in the December issue.

Here are some of the latest big moments: Read the rest of this entry »

Pet Peeves Around the Barn

October 28, 2008

Check out three “Pet Peeves Around the Barn” from the Certified Horsemanship Association.

1. Bit Grunge

One of my pet peeves is when riders put away a bridle without cleaning the bit off.

When the bit comes out of the horse’s mouth it frequently has slobber and food particles, combining together to form a lovely green slime. The slime will come off the bit quite easily when you first take it out of the horse’s mouth, by rinsing the bit and wiping it off.

If the slime is left on the bit, it will dry and crack and cause significant discomfort to the horse the next time it is used. Take a few extra seconds when unbridling to clean the bit before hanging up the bridle.

Christy Landwehr
CHA Clinician – Denver, Colorado Read the rest of this entry »

The Healing Power of Horses

October 28, 2008

One woman’s horse gave her hope in a time of despair.

Pamela Higginbotham and Skipas Gold Star

Pamela Higginbotham and Skipas Gold Star

Pamela Higginbotham of Meadville, Mississippi, bought Skipas Gold Star in 2003, shortly after the death of her father. The yearling filly was in poor body condition when Pamela purchased her, but she poured her time and love into the mare, doing hours of groundwork each day.

“I needed this mare, because my dad had died,” Pamela says. “I had a rough time. It was the first death in the family, and we were very close.

“Then my mom got breast cancer, and my husband, Derrell, fell and shattered several bones in his leg. Three days later, my little sister, who had taken my dad’s death pretty hard, overdosed.” Read the rest of this entry »

Sassys Tuffy

October 27, 2008

This gelding is a top contender in November’s Bank of America Challenge Championship.

Sassys Tuffy. Photo by Coady Photography.

Sassys Tuffy. Photo by Coady Photography.

On November 8, one of the top contenders for the $350,000 Bank of America Challenge Championship (G1) is Sassys Tuffy, a 4-year-old gelding owned by C. Dawn Ivey of Dennis, Texas, bred by her grandfather and trained by her father, C. Dwayne “Sleepy” Gilbreath.

Sassys Tuffy earned a neck victory in the July 12, $114,660 Bank of America Texas Challenge (G1) at Sam Houston Race Park to earn his ticket into the top-flight race at Evangeline Downs. He went 440 yards in :21.645 for his fifth win in 15 starts.

“After the first hundred yards, this horse really likes to pick up the pace and run fast,” said jockey Jose Alvarez, who also rode Sassys Tuffy to a half length victory in the second of two trials June 28. “I’m so happy about this win. I feel truly blessed.”

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Sharp as a Tack

October 24, 2008

Regular cleaning keeps leather safe and durable.

Take care of your leather, and your tack will be sturdy and safe for years to come.

Take care of your leather, and your tack will be sturdy and safe for years to come.

As the weather turns cooler, now’s the perfect time to clean your tack for winter storage.

After months of summer riding, your tack has accumulated layers of grimy dirt from your horse’s sweat. And, unfortunately, you can’t just throw it in the washing machine.

It’s recommended that all tack that comes into direct contact with your horse – fenders on a western saddle, headstalls and breast collars, for example – be wiped off with a clean, wet sponge or rag after each ride. If sweat is allowed to dry on the leather, the tack becomes stiff and brittle over time. The germy environment is also conducive to mold spores. Read the rest of this entry »

Shine by the Bay

October 23, 2008

The most common coat color modifier makes bay horses.

 Sunny Cide Jazz, owned by Tabatha Taylor of Amarillo, is a classic bay.

Sunny Cide Jazz, owned by Tabatha Taylor of Amarillo, is a classic bay.

By Andrea Caudill

All horse colors are either black- or red-based, and all other colors are derivatives of these. The most common modifier is the agouti (ah-GOO-tee) gene. The Spanish-derived word comes from a South American rodent related to a guinea pig.

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Miss Night Bar

October 23, 2008

In the midst of a successful racing career, this mare became one good mama.

Buy this photo of Miss Night Bar!

Buy this photo of Miss Night Bar!

By Richard Chamberlain

There was a saying among old-time breeders of Quarter Horses that went, “Good horses, like good men, have good mothers.”

If you subscribe to that theory, then you would likely accept as fact that Miss Night Bar was a good mother.

Most Quarter Horse people remember Miss Night Bar as the mother of Jet Deck. And true enough, when Jet Deck made a name for himself, the glory was more than abundant, spilling over to everything else connected with him, his mother included. Read the rest of this entry »

World’s Largest Single-Breed Show

October 22, 2008

Highlights from the All American Quarter Horse Congress.

Youth Trail featured two working areas.

Youth Trail featured two working areas.

By Christine Hamilton

The All American Quarter Horse Congress is in full swing in its last full week at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus, Ohio.

The 2008 edition of the world’s largest single-breed show had almost 18,000 pre-entries and will attract approximately 650,000 people to the Columbus area from every state and several countries.

Still to come on the final Congress weekend: the Congress Masters 2-year-old hunter under saddle – $75,000 to the winner – and the Congress Masters 2-year-old snaffle bit western pleasure – $100,000 to the winner.

There’s also the Congress Tie-Down Classic, the Congress Pole Bending Sweepstakes and the Wenger Barrel Racing Sweepstakes.

Check out The American Quarter Horse Journal’s full Congress coverage in the December issue! Read the rest of this entry »

Left Brain, Right Brain

October 21, 2008

Knowing how horses operate can help your training efforts.

By AQHA Professional Horsewoman and Certified Horsemanship Association International Spokeswoman Julie Goodnight

Horses are very one-sided because they have a very underdeveloped corpus callosum, which is the connective tissue between the two hemispheres of the brain that allows messages to go from one side of the brain to the other.

Humans have a very highly developed corpus callosum, meaning we think with both sides of the brain at one time.

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