Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A horse for all seasons

Judging by comments on yesterday's post, I am not the only one who has encountered some breed/discipline bias out there in the horse world. Sad day when we as a horse community cannot accept our differences and find ways to connect and prosper together. Thanks for all your comments and insights, I really enjoy your views.

While I was riding in Buffalo river the topic of showing came up on a ride to twin falls. I started talking about preparing for my next show which is in September.
My new found trail riding friends expressed shock that I showed horses and more shock that I was riding Harley my "show horse" out there. They were of the opinion that if he was a show horse that he should be in some pristine barn being pampered to the max. I had to laugh and set them straight. First of all I do not have the time nor resources to have a horse for all seasons.....
Well let me rephrase that.....Harley is my horse for all seasons. Meaning just that.
He must be my show horse, trail horse , kid toter and fun machine. I really don't think I would want it any other way. Yes, I will admit I used to be one of those "show only' folks. I kept my horses stalled 23 out of the 24hrs a day. You know what? They were miserable little wrecks. Thank goodness I came to my senses and realized that horses need to be horses. So now my boys live mainly outside in a big pasture with a run in shed and only come in during rough or inclement weather.
I have found that most horses thrive in this environment doing what they do best, being a horse. I also know that by mixing it up by trail riding and arena work keeps my horse fresh. What are your thoughts on a horse for all seasons? Drop me a line.

Happy trails....


Callie said...

It's a good thing to get the horse you show out on the trails. In fact, I've read many articles in various horse magazines suggesting that very same thing.

The Knutson's said...

What a great post...both this one and the one below it! I am sure that Harley is a much happier horse, because he is you horse for all seasons.

There is alot of breed and riding discipline bias around here as well. For example, a lot of people think that I am crazy to put my kids on Arabs, and most non-gaited riders complain when a gaited horse shows up....just silly stuff I tell you :)

You suffer from camera troubles as well???? Doesn't it drive you crazy???

Anonymous said...

I like to ride a well-rounded horse. I enjoy a collected lope in a arena and i like a responsive horse on the trail, with a rein-swinging walk, a good whoa, and an ability to work around obstacles. Our friend Sami Jo has a champion barrel horse that she rides in a halter around the farm. Came in handy on a first barrel when her bridle came apart, fell off, and she finished the pattern with an 18 time and a hank of mane. Not a lot of barrel horses could have finished that race.

Mrs Mom said...

Hey TRC!

Yep- biasa. Its everywhere. For most of my life, I rode an Appy. We showed English at first, and <.. gasp..> JUMPED even. Apps, where we were *Did Not DO That*. But HE did, and he routinely kiced non-spotted horses butts...When he started loosing his eyesight, we switched to western classes. And he still kicked butts- spots or not.

He left a lot behind in knowledge- and now EVERY horse that comes to our fmaily is expected to show, go trail riding, and live as yours do- Like A Horse.

GREAT posts girl!!! Always thought provoking ;)

Pony Girl said...

Hey TRC, I have to agree with you, a horse for all reasons/seasons! That is what My Boy is. I could show him if I wanted, just locally, but I'd prefer not to right now. I just enjoy pleasure riding. He's great for the trails, he's great to school on, he's just great.

I so believe in getting horses out of the arena once in a while! Even those fancy pampered show horses. Mentally, they'd be so much happier!

Kathy C said...

I'm with you on this post. Our horses live free choice pasture/sheds and they love it. I have had quite a few questions about not keeping them in when it rains or snows, but they're smart enough to know when to come in or not.

As far as showing goes, our horses that are mentally strongest in the show ring are those that love to go on trail rides.