June 2010

AQHA’s Stewards Program

June 25, 2010

AQHA is committed to the health and welfare of the American Quarter Horse.

As AQHA continues its commitment to ensure that the health and welfare of the American Quarter Horse remains paramount, I am more than pleased with the debut of the AQHA Stewards program. Funding for the stewards program comes from an increase in show processing fees that became effective in 2010.

To help level the playing field for exhibitors and ensure the welfare of horses in competition, a portion of those funds have been designated for breed integrity initiatives like the stewards program. Read the rest of this entry »

Youth President Bids Farewell

June 25, 2010

“This is my final year in youth and I will miss it immensely.”

A reflection from outgoing AQHYA President Cait Kerber:

Outgoing AQHYA President Cait Kerber offers her reflections from her past year in service. Photo by Tom Schmidt.

When I started this year I was terrified of how I was going to lead this huge group of talented individuals, but the truth is I had nothing to be scared of. This past year of being president has been the most amazing experience of my life. I have had the opportunity to befriend what I believe to be some of the most talented and amazing individuals in the world. My officer and director team has done an amazing job of standing behind me, and I am so proud of everything we have accomplished. Read the rest of this entry »

Happy and Healthy Stallions: Part 2

June 25, 2010

Considering your stallion’s social needs when you handle and house him pays you back with a happier horse.

The most natural way to house your stallion is in a herd with his mares. Ignoring a stallion's social needs often results in a stallion that is difficult to handle or doesn’t know how to interact with other horses.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

This is the second of a three-part series. Need to review Part 1?

Socializing a Mature Stallion

Not everyone raises stallions the same. Ignoring their social needs often results in stallions that are difficult to handle or don’t know how to interact with other horses. If you’ve acquired a stallion like this, it isn’t too late. You can still socialize him, although it might take some time and planning.

If your stallion doesn’t respect people, fixing that needs to be a priority, and you might need to skip a breeding season to reform him. The loss of income from the missed breeding season might prevent bigger losses down the road, because stallions that don’t respect their human handlers create a liability for your farm. If you aren’t an experienced stallion handler, seek professional help from someone who is.

Read the rest of this entry »

Defeating Dehydration

June 24, 2010

A pinch of prevention goes a long way.

When a horse is dehydrated, fresh water is the best cure.

Dehydration is a condition that humans and animals suffer from when the body doesn’t have enough water. Dehydration can be caused by fever or diarrhea. But the most common cause of dehydration is the loss of body fluid from sweating on a hot day or after a hard ride. Some of the more noticeable signs of dehydration from a horse are sunken eyes, red inner eyelids, dry nose, and a drawn flank. So what’s a horseman to do? In the following activity, a simple pinch and capillary refill test will be practiced on a live horse. Read the rest of this entry »

Horse, Heal Thyself: Part 2

June 24, 2010

Immunostimulants boost the immune system to fight disease.

Immunostimulant therapy begun before a young horse leaves home will help him fend off disease.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

This is the last of a two-part series. Need to review Part 1?

Sales and Training

Young horses are faced with formidable challenges to their immune systems when they leave the farm for the first time to travel to sales, training centers or racetracks, putting them at high risk for illness.

  • Their naïve immune systems encounter pathogens to which they previously have not been exposed
  • The first trip on a trailer usually is stressful emotionally and physically
  • The pace at sales often is hectic and grueling for youngsters
  • Training is stressful and physically demanding
  • The large horse population and high traffic in and out of sales, training centers and racetracks facilitates the spread of disease.

Read the rest of this entry »

Show Prep: The Finale

June 23, 2010

A quick tune-up before entering the class.

Mental and physical preparation for the show will result in a saddle ornamented with ribbons.

Driving down the highway, windows down and George playing on the radio; the hot dry wind circulating through the rolled-down windows of the cab. The tires kicking up dust as you speed down the road; you’re late to the show.  In your haste to make the show, you may have forgotten some important pre-show considerations to prepare yourself.

Over the course of the last three weeks, we have been highlighting some important items to help prepare the first-time horseman and brush up the experienced horseman before taking to the show ring.  This will conclude that series. Read the rest of this entry »

Reining 101

June 23, 2010

Everything you ever wanted to know about reining, and then some.

Shawn Flarida and RC Fancy Step, by Wimpys Little Step out of Sonita Wilson, marked an impressive 232.5 to win the 2009 NRHA Open Derby.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

Reining has been called the dressage of the western world. As in dressage, a rider pilots a collected horse through a prescribed pattern while being judged on smoothness, control, attitude and finesse.

However, all similarities stop there. Where dressage is slow and measured, reining is a fast-paced thrill ride full of hard-driving runs, explosive stops and dizzying spins.

Read the rest of this entry »

Stealing Sticks

June 22, 2010

Play games like kids from the Wild West.

This diagram shows you how to set-up the playing field. Spread the sticks out evenly within the prison area.

Hey kids!

I just heard about this cool game from my friends in the paddock! Ya see, back in the day, traveling for months at a time got pretty boring for everyone, but there were ways to have fun, too. This game was played by children when the wagons were stopped for nooning, while waiting to cross a flooded river, or while waiting for hunters to bring back meat or lost mules and oxen. A Mormon girl traveling to Utah wrote about playing this game in Read the rest of this entry »

The Road to WEG

June 22, 2010

How our athletes qualify for the Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games.

By Holly Clanahan of America’s Horse

With fewer than 100 days until the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games, excitement is mounting. But which reiners will be representing Team USA? The selection process culminates next month with the United States Equestrian Federation Open Reining Championship, which is being held as part of Battle in the Saddle. Thirty horses will be competing for five spots on the team.

At AQHA, we’re thrilled that the sport of reining – the only western discipline Read the rest of this entry »

Guard Against Ulcers

June 22, 2010

It’s not just horse owners who feel the pressure of training and competition; horses feel it, too.

Routine events such as training and competition can be stressful enough to contribute to equine stomach ulcer development.

From AQHA Corporate Partner Merial

Horse shows can be a stressful endeavor. However, exhibitors aren’t the only ones who deal with the pressure of competition. Whether horses travel the country attending shows week after week or are out once a year to win a ribbon at the county show, they can feel the stress of competition, too.

Read the rest of this entry »

Integrity: Not for Sale

June 21, 2010

“The need for integrity today is perhaps as great as it has ever been.  It is absolutely essential for anyone who desires to become a person of influence.” – John C. Maxwell

“Integrity is the essence of everything successful.”

Integrity can be defined as uprightness of character and soundness of moral principle. Last we discussed how having a strong sense of character can have a great impact on your ability to excel as a leader.  But it’s more than just having strong character.  Integrity plays an integral part in success.

Read the rest of this entry »

Anterior Segment Dysgenesis

June 21, 2010

Research is making it easier to find a marker linked to the gene and develop tests to identify this disease in carrier horses.


Could you provide an update on anterior segment dysgenesis? Is it carried with the silver gene, and are all homozygous ASD horses also homozygous for silver?


Your question is very timely, as more and more information is being discovered about Read the rest of this entry »