January 2011

Young Horses and Cutting

January 31, 2011

Learn the best age to start your horse in cutting.


I have a 2 1/2 year old Hollywood Dun It colt with old cutting blood in his background – top and bottom. I compete in cutting on an older Freckles Playboy gelding and someday will retire him. My goal is to put my colt in cutting training.

However, he is a pretty tall guy, and his growth has been phenomenal. He was very leggy for quite a while, and I didn’t want to start him too early; I was afraid of blowing knees and hocks.  He is also a little immature in the head but really coming around. He is saddle broke. I have been on him and am doing a lot of bending and teaching him to move off of my leg with great success.
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Fallen Stars

January 31, 2011

America’s Horse remembers two famous Quarter Horse stars.

By Becky Newell for America’s Horse

In honor of that year's big film "Dances With Wolves," Billy Crystal rides Beechnut across the stage of the 63rd Annual Academy Awards. Photo courtesy of Academy Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Nicknamed after a brand of chewing tobacco, Charlies Surprise grew up as a ranch horse who was used for roping and gathering cattle. With all that exposure to obstacles and “boogers,” it was no surprise that the calm, cool and collected Beechnut found his way to working on movie sets, one of which was “City Slickers.” Read the rest of this entry »

Scavenger Hunt

January 28, 2011

January’s contest will take you on a scavenger hunt through all of AQHA’s Web properties. Follow the clues, and you could win a great prize for you or your horse!

It’s the beginning of a new year, and AQHA is starting off with a bang! Each Friday in January 2011, we’ll begin an online scavenger hunt that will send you through all of AQHA’s Web properties:

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Major Bonanza

January 28, 2011

He was a halter horse with cow sense.

From The American Quarter Horse Journal

A striking chestnut stallion, Major Bonanza turned heads in halter before winning performance classes as well. He went on to sire 15 AQHA World Champions in seven disciplines.

Andy Rees had a big decision to make, and it couldn’t wait.

In 1972, Andy Rees and his wife, Carol, were both 25 years old and dreamed of owning and standing their own stallion. They had approached Bill Moomey about purchasing a son of AQHA Champion Coy’s Bonanza. Read the rest of this entry »

A Passion for Performance

January 27, 2011

Stay on top of the most current products available for the health of your performance horse.

By AQHA Corporate Partner Merial

The stress of training and showing puts the performance horse at risk for joint pain and stomach ulcers. Health management is key to performance longevity. Photo courtesy of Waltenberry.

Good veterinarians must focus on providing the best and most current care for their patients.

For Dr. Wade Shoemaker at Countryside Large Animal Veterinary Service in Greeley, Colorado, staying abreast of the latest products, as well as cutting-edge practices and technology, are some of the ways he knows he’s providing the best care for his patients and their horses. Read the rest of this entry »

Are You in Shape to Show? Part 1

January 26, 2011

Prepare more than your horse for your next show.

By Sarah Elder in The American Quarter Horse Journal

You already prepare your horse at home; prepare yourself as well with these tips. Photo by John Brasseaux

“To have a winning combination, both horse and rider need to be in their best physical condition,” says Shannon Klepper, 2008 president of the International Association of Certified Equine Fitness Trainers. “It’s amazing how much time and money is spent on training and conditioning our horses to be in peak physical condition, but when it comes to our own physical condition, we often let that fall by the wayside.” Read the rest of this entry »

“Goodnight for Justice”

January 25, 2011

Luke Perry stars in this Hallmark Channel original Western

Luke Perry in "Goodnight for Justice." Photo courtesy of the Hallmark Channel

If you were a “Beverly Hills, 90210” fan, you’ll want to be sure to catch this new Western, which premieres January 29 on the Hallmark Channel (8 p.m. Eastern and Pacific; 7 p.m. Central). Luke Perry stars as a kind-hearted circuit judge who is haunted by his family’s violent death. “Goodnight for Justice” is directed by his fellow “90210” alum Jason Priestly. (Luke, who conceived the idea for the movie, serves as an executive producer.) And, yes, there are horses aplenty.

Danny Virtue was the horse wrangler, and he also hosted the filming at his British Columbia ranch, Virtue Studio Ranch. He says it was a joy to have Luke there with his enthusiasm for the project, and he says he saw the actor’s riding prowess grow.

“He was a good rider to begin with because of his background, but now he’s a real good rider,” Danny says. One particular scene called for Luke to be dragged by a horse down the town’s main street — and the actor did his own stuntwork. Read the rest of this entry »

Power Steering, Part 2

January 25, 2011

Nancy Cahill explains “the world’s simplest, hardest exercise” for you and your horse.


By AQHA Professional Horsewoman Nancy Cahill with Christine Hamilton in The American Quarter Horse Journal

The world’s simplest, hardest exercise will round your eggs into circles. Illustration by Jean Abernethy

Want to review Part 1?

To have “guide” in your horse means that you move your hand an inch, and you get a “mile” of movement. When you neck rein an inch left or right, your horse’s nose bends, then his poll, neck, shoulders, ribs and hips all follow in the same path, immediately.

You can ride an island of cones for a young horse learning to neck rein or to reinforce an older horse’s guide. Eventually, what you want to have is your reins in one hand, and when you lay the rein to turn, he wraps his head around a cone in the direction you want to go. But you have to take the time to help him get there. Read the rest of this entry »

He Made It Do

January 24, 2011

Size was no hindrance to this “Little Peanut.”

The articles in “Family Tree” are compilations of stories that have appeared over the years in The American Quarter Horse Journal

Of an estimated 450 Finals runs, cowboys wrestled 225 consecutive steers from Make It Do's back before ever missing one. AQHA file photo

When he was unloaded at Bay Meadows Race Track for training in 1966, the scrawny 2-year-old didn’t look like much compared to the other Quarter Horses coming off the trailer.

“They said this little shrimp is the best,” boasted Stan Immenschuh, the trainer who was delivering horses to the track.

The grooms walked away, “probably to flip a coin to see who didn’t have to take care of the pony,” Stan thought to himself. Read the rest of this entry »

Causes of Moon Blindness

January 23, 2011

Learn more about this auto-immune disease commonly referred to as moon blindness that affects horses’ eyes from the American Association of Equine Practitioners.


What exactly is “moon blindness,” and what causes it?


“Moon blindness” is another term for Equine Recurrent Uveitis, called ERU for short. ERU is a disease seen only in horses. Read the rest of this entry »

Looking for Gold

January 21, 2011

Some frank talk from breeders on how they select broodmares.

By Christine Hamilton in The American Quarter Horse Journal

A good broodmare is worth her weight in gold.

Ask great breeders what the secret is to raising top individuals, and they’ll say their mares. Stallions have many chances to sire a great individual every year, but most mares have only one chance a year to produce a great foal.

That’s why so many breeders believe in the prepotency of great mares, even though the genetics come equally from sire and dam. Finding a great-producing mare is like hitting a seam of gold in quartz.

The American Quarter Horse Journal asked three leading performance and halter breeders how they pick the “gold” in their herds, and here’s what they had to say:

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Healing Heroes

January 20, 2011

How “Hero” recovered from stomach ulcers and returned to barrel racing.

From AQHA Partner Merial

Hero before and after.

Lori McCard’s relationship with “Hero” started long before she saw him in the pasture more than a year ago. For years, Lori had not only trained and competed with Hero, but she had also formed a very special bond with the horse. When Lori’s hectic schedule no longer allowed her enough time to work with Hero, she sold him to a family with children. After several years, he eventually ended up in a pasture without the kind of care and attention he needed. When the family made the tough decision to find a new home for Hero, they remembered how much Lori had loved the horse and the strong bond that had existed between the two. That’s when she got the call. Would she be willing to take him? The decision was easy.
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