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ALBERTA HORSES Horse Industry Association of Alberta

Horse Industry Association of Alberta


the 34th Annual

AlbertA Horse ConferenCe

January 15-17, 2016 • Red Deer, Alberta

An annual horseman’s mid-winter escape. . . . . .education, networking, socializing & entertainment! Internationally recognized speakers on a wide range of topics of interest to horse owners, breeders and professionals: Jim Anderson (Alberta) .............. Developing a Versatile Horse dr. Joseph Bertone (California) Common Problems in Horses - You Choose! dr. sid GustAfson (Montana) ......Ethical Veterinary Care of the Competition Horse dr. sArA mAlone (Kentucky)........Impact of Forelimb Asymmetries on Performance dr molly mccue (Minnesota)....... Beyond the Horse Genome Sequence dr. dAvid rAmey (California) ...........The "Real" Cost of Horse Ownership Billy smith (Texas) ..................... Promises to Keep - Reclaiming our Horse Heritage dirk strodA (British Columbia) ......... A Change in Emotion Changes Everything dr. kAren WAite (Michigan)...........What if the Whip Doesn't Work? .................................................... Using Learning Theory in Everyday Equine Life dr. lori WArren (Florida) ............. Fixing the Overweight Horse dr. dAvid Wilson (Saskatchewan).. The Laminitis Vaccine Plus... • Equine trade show of sponsor exhibits • Friday evening "Open Barn" Welcome • Saturday evening reception, Alberta Distinguished Service Award • Discounts for multiple advance registrations from the same farm • Register by December 1 to be eligible for an Early Bird prize

(403) 420-5949

For more information or to register:


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Alberta Bits is the Alberta Equestrian Federation’s official member magazine. It serves the entire equestrian community of horses and riders of all ages, interests and involvement, as the Voice of Equine Alberta. T H E A L B E RTA E Q U E S T R I A N F E D E R AT I O N H A S B E E N I N C O R P O R AT E D S I N C E 1 9 7 8 Alberta Bits magazine is mailed four times a year (Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter) to all current AEF members and is made available at the office and special events attended by the AEF. Alberta Bits is distributed throughout Alberta with news and events on behalf of recreational, sport, breeds & industry and educational sectors of the Alberta horse industry. Alberta Bits is distributed to approximately 17,500 members; 9,000 households and businesses, an exclusive list of tack and equine establishments and at events and trade shows annually.


Les Oakes 403.540.9859 Lewis Hand 403.722.4690 Tara Gamble 780.945.7516 Lauren Parker 403.813.1055 Barb Easthom 403.801.4111 Trish Mrakawa 403.938.6398 Nicolas Brown 780.454.5001 Dena Squarebriggs 403.760.0512 Alison Douglas 403.762.8570 Don Scott 403.982.7660 Jessi Chrapko 403.627.5696 Robert Simpson 780.619.7779 Darcee Gundlock 403.308.7500

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ANIMAL HEALTH LEGISLATION CHANGES A reminder about the changes to the Alberta Animal Health Act and what it means for horse owners.

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L I V E O U T S I D E T H E B OX W I N N E R S The winners of the program that rewards time away from television and computer screens, and more time with horses!

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BILL DESBARRES SCHOLARSHIP WINNER Brittany Kuhn is the 2016 recipient of this annual award, offered to students entering into Animal Health Technology.

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AEF BITS & PIECES Regional presentations; and notice of the Annual AEF General Meeting.

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C L U B P RO F I L E S The Alberta chapter of the Canadian Sport Horse Association; The rewarding nature of the Peace Area Riding for the Disabled Society.

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W I L D RO S E S H O W C O M P E T I T I O N The Fairview Fall Finale is backed by a passionate show committee and fronted by an enthusiastic group of riding competitors.

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O U T S TA N D I N G VO L U N T E E R Ray Nikiforuk is a cherished volunteer of the Fairview Sport Horse Society.

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WORKING TOGETHER AEF hosts the first annual Equine Industry Collaborative Meeting.

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R E S TO R AT I O N C O M P L E T E D The wait is over. The Panther Valley trail project is completed and ready for riders, hikers and wagons.

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W E AT H E R I N G T H E C O L D Horse-keeping advice for beating the chill of the winter season.

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ASK THE INSURANCE GUY Insurance coverage doesn’t always extend to accidents incurred during competition. Find out Capri’s stand on the matter.

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C I E C T E A M A L B E RTA R E S U LT S Our province held its own at the 2015 Canadian Interprovincial Equestrian Championships this past September.

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J U D G E P RO F I L E Our new column! Meet judge Beth Hacking and discover why her passion for hunters extends beyond the show arena.


Sonia Dantu 403.253.4411 ext 5 MEMBERSHIP COORDINATOR


Ashley Miller 403.253.4411 ext 6


Erin Lundteigen 403.253.4411 ext 3 COMPETITIONS COORDINATOR

Sophie Beaufils 403.253.4411 ext 2 FINANCE, GENERAL INQUIRIES

Rita Bernard 403.253.4411 ext 7

RECREATION & INDUSTRY 403.253.4411 ext 4 O F F I C E H O U R S : 8 : 3 0 T O 4 : 3 0 P M , M O N D A Y T O F R I D A Y, E X C E P T H O L I D A Y S A L B E R TA B I T S I S P U B L I S H E D B Y W E S T E R N H O R S E R E V I E W I N PA R T N E R S H I P W I T H T H E A E F

FOR EDITORIAL ENQUIRIES CONTACT: ALBERTABITS@ALBERTAEQUESTRIAN.COM Jennifer Webster Natalie Jackman PUBLICATION COMMITTEE Ashley Miller, Sonia Dantu CONTRIBUTORS Robyn Boudreau, Suzanne Hale, Bonnie Herbers, Alaina Nikiforuk, Meghan OBrien Photography, Monika Smith, Cealy Tetley, and Piper Whelan. MANAGING EDITOR ART DIRECTOR


Sally Bishop 403.815.1289 Laura Mills 403.461.8964 2016 ADVERTISING DEADLINES


or All material is copyright 2015. Ideas and opinions expressed in articles do not necessarily reflect the ideas or opinions of the AEF. Alberta Bits reserves the right to accept, and/or edit material submitted for publication. The AEF makes every effort to ensure the accuracy of the information contained therein, but assumes no liability in cases of error or changing conditions. Any business relations or other activities undertaken as a result of the information contained in Alberta Bits, or arising there from, is the responsibility of the parties involved and not of the AEF. We welcome signed letters to the editor, but reserve the right to publish, edit for grammar, taste and length. For reprint information, please contact


100, 251 Midpark Blvd SE Calgary, AB T2X 1S3 Toll Free: 1.877.463.6233 Phone: 403.253.4411 Fax: 403.252.5260


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Hitched carriage horses.


President’s Message As you read this the ground may be covered in that white stuff, but I do not think anybody can complain about the weather as we progressed through September and October. We had lots of sunshine and above average temperatures. If the weather people are on track, we may even be in for a brown Christmas in certain parts of the province as we are supposed to be influenced strongly this year by El Nino. In fact, 2015-2016 is being forecast as the warmest winter ever. While most of us will enjoy the easy life the lack of snow provides, it could create moisture issues for the spring. Speaking of moisture and how it has affected the hay crops throughout the province – and from travelling around the province and talking to both hay producers and hay buyers – it seems that prices have levelled out and the prices that were being charged or were being quoted seem to have levelled off or in some areas, declined. Whether it be small squares or round bales, I have seen evidence of prices headed down. I believe once hay gets to a certain price then alternatives such as compressed hay or hay cubes begin to be attractively priced. Hay cubes, most years, are in most people’s eyes expensive but once hay starts to go above the $200 per tonne mark ($6.00 for a 65-pound square bale) the benefits of hay cubes with the lack of waste and controlled nutrient content begin to make sense. Many things that were either in the planning stages or had not occurred when I wrote the Fall President’s message have come to fruition. The Equine Canada (EC) proposed bylaws were passed and now EC can move forward and continue to fine-tune their work as a National Sport Body. Additionally they can work with their provincial partners to create a much more positive climate in which to advance all of our equine interests. The Canadian Interprovincial Equestrian Championships (CIEC) which is a great combination of reining, jumping and dressage were held in Ottawa this past fall and, as usual, our Alberta Team did very well. The 4th annual AEF Wild Rose Trail Ride to benefit Therapeutic Riding Clubs has come and gone. Each year we have grown not only the numbers of participants, but also the corporate sponsorship and, therefore, have been able to increase the donation amount to these very deserving organizations. The staff and many of the Board of Directors have just completed the first of a series of regional presentations. The first was held in Lethbridge, followed by Edmonton and then in Grande Prairie. Not only was it great to meet our members but I believe our members really enjoyed the

evening together and having questions answered. Mike King from Capri Insurance did a great job answering everyone’s insurance questions and his passion for the AEF and our programs was contagious. I personally enjoyed the interaction with the members who attended as it gives our staff and the board a chance to ask our members: “What is it you want the AEF to do, or to become?” It is your organization and it is your input that determines the direction the AEF takes. Unfortunately, we do not hear from many of our members and that is why it was so great to meet and talk to you at these informal events. In early October, the AEF hosted the first of what I hope is one of many Equine Collaborative Meetings. This was a gathering of industry partners who got together to share best practises and to see how we could create synergy around each other’s organizations for the welfare of the equine industry in Alberta and how we can work together in the future. It was a great meeting. Most people in the room knew each other and we all had a good idea of what each other’s organization did, but it was great to look at the future of the horse industry together and plan for the future together. Moving forward, our first collaborative project will be to initiate an emergency preparedness project. Through Alberta Bits and Enews, the AEF will keep everyone abreast of the direction in which we choose to proceed. In closing, from all of the Staff and from your Board of Directors, I would like to wish you and your families all the best in 2016 and I hope you have a Merry Christmas. AB



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A day in the life of our horses. -Linda Patry-Erickson (Jasper, AB)

(L-R): This is a picture of myself, Gen Rudzki, this fall, having a heart-to-heart with our mare, six-year-old Calypsa, in Leduc County. Calypsa is half-Canadian and half-Mustang. She was a "surprisebreeding," but the best thing to happen to my daughter and I. Calypsa has an old soul, and why shouldn't she? She's named after Calypso, in Homer's Odyssey, the oldest story in history. Calypsa would love to have her picture published in your next issue. -Gen Rudzki (Leduc, AB)


Do you love spending time with your horses? Do you love reading Alberta Bits magazine? Drop us a comment. Or send us a picture of yourself, your kids, or your friends enjoying some quality time with your equine companions to and we’ll publish it in the next issue of the official magazine of the Alberta Equestrian Federation!

This is a photo of my daughter Hannah Waldron and her Holsteiner 'Creedence."Cory Waldron (Okotoks, AB) This is my pony Karma, taken about a year ago. -Milla Nadeau (Calgary, AB) Submitted by Trina Sroka (Spruce Grove, AB) This is my niece Alexis on Belle. -Tammy Croteau (Calgary, AB)

ABOVE: Here is a fun photo we took with our daughter Carolyn's new horse, Cleopatra III (Ali). She is Canadian Warmblood and so personable! -Cathy Stotts (Calgary, AB)

ABOVE: NEW & LOVING IT! While my grandchildren and I have a few years experience riding, driving and being trained in natural horsemanship (mostly my granddaughter with the latter), none of us have had our own horses until this past year. We built our new facility, DIY from start to finish. This included a stable, corral/paddock, complete with electrical and waterer. This fall we began to really enjoy our three equine companions. A three-year-old registered Quarter Horse for my granddaughter (age 17), and a one-and-a-half-year-old GypsyWalker colt for my grandson (age 13) and a 12-year-old Quarter/Thoroughbred-cross for me. -Kathleen Clements (Lethbridge, AB)

The Alberta Equestrian Federation


The Alberta Equestrian Federation (AEF) is built on the strong foundation of our members and volunteers. We are extremely proud of our equine community and would like to take this opportunity to say thank-you for your amazing support, passion and participation in the Alberta equine community. The AEF team would also like to wish you a safe and Merry Christmas and trust that you are able to ring in the New Year with your loved ones! We look forward to serving your needs in 2016 and hope you will take the time to join us at our AGM on Saturday, March 12, 2016 at Horse and Hand Ranch, Blackfalds, AB. More details to follow. AB NOTE: THE AEF OFFICE WILL BE CLOSED DECEMBER 21 – JANUARY 1 INCLUSIVE A L B E RT A B I T S | W I N T E R 2 0 1 5


“...updated to ensure it continues to meet the evolving needs of livestock owners and the agriculture industry...”

Animal Health Legislation

CHANGES Alberta’s Chief Provincial Veterinarian would once again like to remind livestock owners about changes to the Animal Health Act and regulations, which came into effect on June 30, 2014. Alberta’s animal health legislation was updated to ensure it continues to meet the evolving needs of livestock owners and the agriculture industry, and to make sure the legislation continues to effectively protect animal and public health. For example, some of the changes clarify policies and requirements, recognize modern practices, or allow for more flexibility and options for the livestock industry. Ideas and information provided by Alberta’s agriculture industry were instrumental in building and updating the legislation – making it stronger and more valuable, and recognizing the cutting-edge industry that exists today. What do the changes mean for horse owners? There were several changes to the Disposal of Dead Animals Regulation. For example, there’s now more flexibility for the storage and disposal of dead animals, because the regulation was changed to be more outcome-based (rather than prescriptive). Changes clarified that only animal owners (or people in care and control) who have possession of their animals when they die may use on-farm disposal methods on their own land. New provisions have also been added for on-farm burial of animals less than 100 kg. Producers should also know that your Premises Identification (PID) Number is required and will be recorded as part or regular business transactions, both when purchasing 8

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animal medicines and as part of transactions involving livestock at auction markets. These are new requirements in the Authorized Medicine Sales Regulation (formerly the Production Animal Medicine Regulation) and the Livestock Market Regulation. In the coming months, Agriculture and Forestry will work with livestock markets to implement this new Livestock Market Regulation requirement. Since 2009, the Premises Identification Regulation has required livestock owners and commingling site operators to apply for a PID Account. A commingling site is a location where animals owned by different owners are kept together either temporarily or permanently, for example, a boarding stable. For a complete list of types of commingling sites, see section 3 of the regulation. Premises identification, together with animal identification and animal movement, are the foundations of effective traceability – which is important to protect animal and public health. Knowing where animals could be located is crucial to emergency planning, preparedness and response, so that if an animal health issue or emergency were to occur, it could be managed quickly. For more information, forms and online registration, visit Quick reference guides outlining the main changes in the regulations, as well as links to the Animal Health Act and regulations, can be found on the Agriculture and Forestry website at For more information, you can also contact the Ag Info Centre at 310-FARM (3276). AB

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• Automatic $5,000,000 personal liability and $30,000 AD&D insurance coverage; • Optional insurances available for purchase, including enhanced AD&D coverage to include fracture and dental benefits, Tack Coverage, Members Named Perils coverage for your horses, Weekly Accident Indemnity, Out of Province/Country Travel; • Receive your 2017 basic membership absolutely FREE! Refer brand new members to the AEF and receive $5.00 off per referral! Simply have the new member mention your name and AEF Number when joining (referrals do not carry forward); • Member Discounts are made available exclusively to AEF members from many of our Business Members; • Alberta Bits member magazine four times per year; • Free listings and posting in AEF online forums and classifieds; • Opportunity to apply for scholarships and funding assistance; • Access to participate in clinics and educational workshops; • A wide range of programs for recreational and competitive riders and drivers of all ages; • Live Outside the Box (youth program for active living); • Ride & Drive Program (great rewards); • Trail Supporter - supports the efforts of Alberta trail builders with the development, maintenance and improvement of horse friendly trails, campsites and staging areas throughout the province; • Access to resource information on everything from where to take lessons to where to go trail riding; • Online store – great items from Rider Level Manuals, Trail Manuals/Guides, Equestrian Books, educational DVD’s, Clothing, Muck Boots™, EquineLUX™ saddle pads, Signs and much more;

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Special thank you goes to Muck Boots Canada - McNiven Ranch Supply Ltd., for their sponsorship of the 2015 Live Outside the Box Program, and providing prizes for bi-monthly draws!



Orla Briggs Nessa Ingram Sierra Paterson Raegan Wasilka Charlotte Holloway Nikolai Zayika

Everything is more fun when it's real!




Raina Irons, Age 15

Emma Busson, Age 10

Teagan Brink, Age 10

Highest Number of Hours of Horse Time My name is Raina Irons and I am 15-years-old and attend Burt Church High school as a grade 10 student. I enjoy swimming, sports medicine, doing mud runs, and taking photos, especially of my horses yawning. I love horses, all horse actives like showing in Northern Trails, cowboy challenge, trail, jumping, and am a current member of 4H. Most of my free time is spent outdoors and with my horse.


The Live Outside the Box program is designed to encourage our youth members to put on their boots, get outside and have some fun with a horse. Great prizes are offered to keep participants motivated to spend less time in front of the TV and computer and more time outdoors, with or without a horse. We are delighted to see this program grow in participants and to know that our youth equine enthusiasts are logging a tremendous amount of time away from the lights of the computer and TV screens. Live Outside the Box is a free program available to our youth members between 7 to 15-years-old and runs from April 1st until September 30th of each year. To sign up the young horse lover in your family and to start accumulating hours towards multiple prizes, contact the Alberta Equestrian Federation. We are so excited to announce that our LOTB Alberta Buckaroos logged a total of 11,161 hours of horse time and 10,018 hours of outdoor activity time between April 1 – Sept 31, 2015!

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Lowest Number of Hours of Screen Time My name is Emma Busson, I am 10-yearsold, and a grade six student. I enjoy outdoor activities with my family, hunting, and spending time with my horse. I travel most of the year to rodeos where I compete in barrel racing, pole bending, goat tying, breakaway and ribbon roping. Throughout the school year I participate in basketball and volleyball. My siblings and I usually have target contests shooting our BB guns, we also go on trail rides and have a good time. I personally prefer rodeo over trail riding but when we all go together, it is fun!

Highest Number of Hours of Outdoor Activities My name is Teagan, I am 10-years-old and have been riding since I was four. My horse’s name is Earl and he is a 21-year-old sorrel chestnut Quarter Horse. I enjoy trail riding, barrel racing, doing poles, goat tying and extreme cowboy competitions. I am very excited to have won this award. I am outside a lot, riding my horse every day. My dream is to be a professional barrel racer and horse trainer one day. I have a great family that supports me a lot and it’s awesome. Thanks AEF for this program!




Highest Number of Hours of Horse Time

Sienna Gullickson, Age 12

special to me. Together we trail ride, show jumper and hunter as well as some cross country. I enjoy riding English, western and bareback. I love Pony Club, animals, sports and the outdoors. SECOND PLACE WINNER

Highest Number of Hours of Outdoor Activities

Zoey Losey, Age 10

and western pleasure, trail, jumping, gymkhana, and trail riding through the fields. My horse, Delicataa is a 16-year-old registered Arab mare who was imported from Texas. Together we compete in reining, English and western pleasure, and gymkhanas. When I’m not riding Delicataa, I spend time with my ponies, and other horses on the ranch. I also enjoy dancing, swimming, running, spending time at the lake, playing with friends, and building my Breyer and Schleich farms. THIRD PLACE WINNER

Lowest Number of Hours of Screen Time

Kate Gubbins, Age 12

I teamed up with Bella (I'm Pretty Major) a nine-year-old Tennessee Walking Horse last fall. We have worked really hard together and have created a great bond. Our favourite things to do are trail obstacles and trail riding, competing in endurance rides (ERA), ACTHA rides and of course heading to shows! SECOND PLACE WINNER

Lowest Number of Hours of Screen Time

Megan Gubbins, Age 12

This summer was lots of fun. I went from just riding in lessons once a week, to riding all the time and helping with camps. There were soooo many horses that I rode. They included: Messi, Bobby, Mazie, Buffy and Jackson. Messi is a Paint mare. Mazie is a red dun and her breeding is Paint too. Bobby is an Appaloosa gelding and he’s a POA. Buffy is a Pinto pony mare. Jackson is an Appaloosa gelding. I like horses because my mom introduced me to them when I was little and they’re awesome! Summer was so much fun! THIRD PLACE WINNER

Highest Number of Hours of Horse Time

Tyne Alliban, Age 8

My name is Megan Gubbins and I just turned 12-years-old. I live with my family on a farm and I have an older brother and sister, as well as a twin sister. My sisters and I love riding horses! I have a 12-year-old Quarter Horse called Baily. Over the years, Baily and I have developed a wonderful relationship and she is very

My name is Tyne, I am 8-years-old and I live on a horse ranch outside of Carstairs. I have been riding since I was just a few days old and enjoy reining, cutting, English

My name is Kate Gubbins, I am 12-yearsold. I live on a farm in southern Alberta. We have horses, sheep, ducks, chickens, dogs and cats. My favorite things include riding horses, pony club, sports and spending time with my family and friends. I have a Welsh pony called Drum and a Thoroughbred horse called Soup. Both of them are so unique and fun to spend time with. I spend most of my time with my horses and our farm animals. I love growing up on a farm in the prairies! THIRD PLACE WINNER

Highest Number of Hours of Outdoor Activities

Zephyrin Losey, Age 6

Summer was a lot of fun, but a lot of work! I like being with the horses because they make you feel special. The names of the horses I’m around are Harley, Hunter, Rori, Daisy and Bobby. Bobby, who I like to ride, is also a lesson horse. He is six-years-old and a POA. I’m learning to lope on him! My mom always rides horses so I’m always around horses. I started riding by myself when I was four. I like having a special bond with the horses. AB A L B E RT A B I T S | W I N T E R 2 0 1 5




BRITTANY KUHN Brittany Kuhn has been involved with horses all her life and was been a 4H member for eight years. She credits this part of her life for teaching her the foundations of horsemanship. For the last seven years, Brittany has competed in polocrosse and plays Grade A, the highest level achievable in Canada. Her equine passion doesn’t stop there, she has also been involved with gymkhanas, cowboy up challenges, working equitation and trail riding with her horses. Currently enrolled in Animal Health Technology at Olds College, her goal is to focus in the equine area, help care for sick and/ or injured animals along with being proactive in health care. Upon graduation, Brittany is looking forward to making a difference in the animal community. AEF congratulates Brittany in being the recipient of this scholarship for 2016. The “Bill desBarres Industry Scholarship” is an annual $500 scholarship provided to an AEF member in good standing who is entering into his/her first or second year of studies in Animal Health Technology (AHT) at an accredited Canadian post-secondary educational institution. Thanks to a generous matching donation from Bill desBarres in 2015, we were able to present Brittany a $1,000 scholarship! AB


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Mike King presents at Amberlea Meadows.

REGIONAL PRESENTATIONS The Alberta Equestrian Federation (AEF) team hit the road in October, traveling to Lethbridge, Edmonton and Grande Prairie, to meet with current and prospective members to discuss the various resources and programs available through the AEF membership. Mike King from Capri Insurance joined us for our Regional Presentations to answer questions regarding the great insurance coverage provided with the basic AEF membership, as well

MEMBERSHIP? Memberships expire December 31st, 2015

Don’t miss out on all the benefits (see page 9 of this issue for a full list)

as the varied insurance options. In addition to answering questions from our members, we received great feedback on how to better our community and met many equine enthusiasts. It was great engaging with our members and we hope all of our participants walked away with a better understanding of their membership. Thank-you for taking the time to visit with our team and we hope to meet many more of our great community members at future AEF events. AB


GENERAL MEETING You are invited to attend the Alberta Equestrian Federation Society’s dynamic AGM March 12, 2016, 1pm – 5pm at Horse In Hand Ranch, Blackfalds, AB. SNEAK PEAK OF EVENTS:

Equine Nutrition • AGM & Annual Report • Freestyle Dressage Natural Horsemanship • Vaulting with the best • And more…

Join us for the afternoon, bring your friends. More details to follow.

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A Team of Good Sports BY PIPER WHELAN

When you register a horse with the Canadian Sport Horse Association (CSHA), not only are there national membership benefits, you can also take advantage of activities put on by your province’s chapter. Barbara Jackson, a national director of the CSHA, also serves as a representative of the association’s Alberta Chapter. “I’m Alberta’s voice on the national board,” she says. She’s been involved with the CSHA since 1983, first in British Columbia and then with the Alberta board, which has been active for the last three decades. The CSHA was formed in 1926 as a registry society, originally called the Canadian Hunter Improvement Society and fashioned after its English counter part. Their mandate is to register breeding stock. Rather than registering with European Warmblood registry books, Canadian breeders can register their horses in a national association meant for sport. For this reason, their name was changed to the Canadian Sport Horse Association in 1986. Nationally, membership is in the 500-700 range, and costs $5 per year, or $35 for an associate membership. An important membership feature, Jackson says, is the ability to register foals with a national association that provides local benefits to its members. “It’s a competitive market, too. At one point, we were the only game in town across the nation, but since then … the European books started paying attention to North America, because there was a big market for them,” Jackson explains. “This is a Canadian product, and we have a brand that is close to 100-years-old.” 14

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The Alberta chapter is your local link to the national association, and hosts events to be enjoyed by Alberta’s CSHA members. The board attends an annual horse breeder’s conference in January, and has held events such as a freejump clinic with long-time CSHA member Bob Henzlewood. The Alberta chapter held its first horse and pony show in years on August 29 at Ultra Livestock in Carstairs, AB. “It’s been quite a while since we’ve held a show,” says Jackson. “Our registry has just opened up our book to sport ponies, and we’ve been inspecting for the last year or so, and the interest is unbelievable. So we wanted to support the ponies by having a show.” On September 14, they held their Select Sale at Creekside Farm just outside of Calgary, which the association hopes will become an annual event. “We went through quite a lovely amount of horses — they were really good horses — and I think this sale is going to be fantastic this year,” she says. “Presently, we are inspecting a lot of horses, and we’re finding a lot of interest in horses to be brought forward for our breeding approval,” she says. “We held our first stallion inspection in February at Alborack Stables. We looked at a bunch of pony and horse stallions, and you know, it was fabulous. We haven’t had one in six or seven years. I’ve been getting so many calls, going all over the province inspecting bloodstock for the pony book and the horse book.” Jackson is excited by this growth, and is looking forward to it continuing, both provincially and nationally. “We’ve had a real flurry of activity here in the province… and I hope it carries on.” If you are interested in joining the Alberta chapter of the CSHA, visit the CSHA’s website at, or their Facebook page. You can also contact Jackson or one of the five Alberta directors. AB TOP: CSHA member Debbie Boyle rides Glory Bound at the 2014 Rocky Mountain Show Jumping. LEFT: Rebecca Howard, aboard Riddle Master, was a member of the 2012 Canadian Olympic eventing team and the 2010 Canadian World Equestrian Games team. Photo by Cealy Tetley BELOW: Executive Privilege 3E, bred by Kingridge Stables, is ridden by Hugh Graham.



A Rewarding Ride Through therapeutic riding and youth programming, this organization works to create a positive impact in the Peace country. BY PIPER WHELAN

When riders arrive at the Peace Area Riding for the Disabled Society (PARDS), they know they’re in their happy place, a special environment where they connect with their equine friends. Located in Grande Prairie, Alberta, PARDS was formed in 1984, “To provide high-quality equine-assisted therapeutic programming to Peace country residents,” says Jennifer Douglas, executive director of PARDS. As their website explains, therapeutic riding is an “...opportunity to increase social interaction, improve self-esteem and build confidence while experiencing physical benefits such as improved balance, posture, flexibility, sensory awareness and endurance.” PARDS serves more than 300 therapeutic riders each year, both children and adults, and has a membership of over 600, including public riders, volunteers and corporate partners, according to Douglas.

New riders first come in for an assessment, which may be done with the help of a physiotherapist. Then the rider is introduced to a horse to identify their comfort level and see how they interact. They also go through a questionnaire to identify the goals the rider has and discuss the various programs and ways the club can help that rider meet those goals. Riders come in once a week for either a 45-minute group lesson or a 30-minute one-on-one lesson. Some riders have a 15-minute session before their lesson to stretch or ride PARDS’ mechanical horse in order to prepare them for an effective ride. PARDS is partially funded by offering board and public lessons. “Our therapeutic riders pay a nominal fee, and we fundraise and accept donations and write grant (applications) for the remainder,” Douglas explains. Their many volunteers are of great help in PARDS’ fundraising efforts. PARDS operates yearround, holding three 10-week sessions between September and May, and summer camps. Some are specific to their therapeutic riders, while some are inclusive camps for both public riders and therapeutic riders. Another special aspect of PARDS is their youth

leadership program, designed to build self-esteem, relationship-building skills and communication skills in youth, ages 10-17. “We partner with the City of Grande Prairie Crime Prevention and their Youth Intervention and Diversion Program, which identifies youth at risk who could benefit from this program,” says Douglas. “We run a variety of programs to have a positive impact on the maximum number of residents of our community as we possibly can.” The new home of PARDS has been under construction since 2013. “We are $900,000 shy of our competition goal, but we will be able to reach occupancy with $150,000 raised to complete construction to the point of being able to run our therapeutic programs out of this facility,” Douglas explains. This new facility will triple the organization’s capacity, eliminating their wait list. “It will expand availability for the riders and allow us to add half-day and fullday workshops for the youth leadership program, so the schools in the Peace area can benefit from the programs as well.” For Douglas, the most rewarding part of working with PARDS is the sense of community their riders feel. “Many of our riders actually come out when it’s not their lesson time to volunteer in various ways,” she says. “It’s just a place that they want to be, where they feel comfortable, and that challenges them while still celebrating every success they have.” To learn more about PARDS visit AB LEFT: Not only does PARDS offer riding lessons, its therapeutic riders have the opportunity to connect with horses through ground work and driving. Photo by Robyn Boudreau

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ABOVE: Alaina Archibald on Whizz Kidd, 2010 Arabian - Appaloosa. Photo by Meghan OBrien Photography


Big Dreams, Big Impact

A little show committee is the secret behind this big event. Build it and they will come, to the Fairview Fall Finale. BY JENN WEBSTER

The Fairview Fall Finale held this past October 3-5, 2015, is an all English horse show offering dressage, English flat, and hunter and jumper classes to the public. Fondly known as the “Biggest Little Show in the North,” this event is backed by the support of the Fairview Sport Horse Society and their events are open to all levels and types of horses and riders. They also proudly offer a variety of divisions to encourage a fun, low-stress environment. These include beginner rider divisions for those who have been riding consistently BELOW: Debbie Adolphson on Vintage SF, Hanoverian. Photo by Meghan OBrien Photography


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for two or less years, as well as a young horse division, for horses within their first 18 months of competition. “We are blessed to have access to a fabulous facility here in Fairview, Alberta called the J.A Hawker Pavilion,” says show organizer, Alaina Archibald. “It is situated on the GPRC College Campus, and under the meticulous care and management of Swartzy Performance Horses. At the Hawker Pavilion we run all our events including two horse shows and multiple educational English-related clinics.” The Fairview Fall Finale sees such a large array of competitors from a variety of areas – so much so, that we always offer a "Frequent Flyer" award for the person who traveled the farthest. “Most typically we see riders traveling from as far south as the Edmonton area, and as far north as Fort Vermillion, Alberta. That being said, many of our riders come from all areas of Peace Region including Dawson Creek and Fort Saint John, Grande Prairie and Peace River.” The event came to be after a small group of friends came together in 2014, because they desired more shows in northern Alberta, that were comparable

to the competitions put on in larger communities. Thus, they hosted the very first Fairview Fall Finale. “We proudly offered over $5,000 in cash and prizes, and saw over 60 competitors come through our doors,” tells Archibald. “We were thoroughly impressed with the community's engagement, as many shows in the area often struggle to break 20 riders. We felt that if we offered superior prizes we would see success, and we did.” In 2015, the group started the show season in the north with a second horse show which they named, the Fairview Spring Opener. They had just under 40 attendants and used this show as a fundraiser for the rest of the season. As a committee, they voted to donate 25% of their profits to help subsidize clinics they hosted at the Hawker Pavilion throughout the 2015 season. “This allowed riders who wanted to attend these educational clinics to do so at a slightly lower expense. We hosted multiple clinics with FEI Certified instructor Sergio Velez and we also brought in Carmie Flaherty, an active trainer and Grand Prix Dressage rider. We finished our season with another very successful Fairview Fall Finale,” Archibald relays. Subsequently, they were the first competition approved in the north with the Thoroughbred Incentive Program. Archibald also notes that the Alberta Equestrian Federation shares the same motivation as their committee, and as a result they have utilized the AEF sanctioning opportunities thus far. “We feel it's just as important to provide high quality competitions in the north at a grass-roots level, while still being affordable for our competitors. And not only does the AEF program provide our riders with protection in the event of an accident, it also protects us as a committee,” she states. For more information, check out www.fairviewsporthorsesociety. AB BELOW: Natalie Nikiforuk and her Thoroughbred mare Save Misty For Me. Together, they cleaned up a bunch of the Thoroughbred Incentive Program classes including the TIP High Point Hunter and TIP High Point Jumper, as well as the 3'0 TIP Medal class.


Ray Nikiforuk and his 2006 OTTB gelding, King Klein. “He retired from racing in 2013 and I have since retrained him for jumping. I showed him in the Spring Opener and even did the bareback jumping classes." Photo by Alaina Nikiforuk

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This busy man finds time to volunteer, knowing how important it is to support the Fairview Sport Horse Society and the need for local events.

There’s Always Time to Give BY SUZANNE HALE

Free time is a rare commodity, and this maxim is a reality in the life of Ray Nikiforuk. Nevertheless, while working for an internet company, building a home, and pursuing pastimes such as snowboarding, hunting and fishing, Nikiforuk sees that a portion of that priceless time is given to the Fairview Sport Horse Society (FSHS). Working alongside wife Alaina, the club’s president, he often devotes his help at FSHS events, recently volunteering at the Fairview Spring Opener. “Without the volunteers at competitions, there would simply be no show,” Nikiforuk says, underscoring why for him, lending a helping hand is a way of life. “It alleviates stress from the organizers.” Equine pursuits are second nature to Nikiforuk. Growing up helping his parents at racetracks all over Alberta and Saskatchewan since the age of two, a love for horses was impressed upon him at an early age, and contributing at FSHS events allows him to share his passion for the sport. Helping ensure a successful first run for the show, he offered his time, talents, and materials to its setup. Explaining his regard for such events, Nikiforuk says, “It’s very important to offer competitions of such calibre, regardless of our location.” Further displaying his motivation, Nikiforuk notes, “Creating an excellent sense of community within the English riding disciplines is important. The FSHS is a very welcoming group, so it fulfills their end of attracting a large array of people.” While helping out the event’s organizers, Nikiforuk also keeps its attendees’ interests at heart. Hoping to take the pressure of travel off competitors, he says offering local events is essential. “There is interest in English riding around here, but nothing local without having to travel for upwards of a couple hours,” he notes. “The show is important for our area,” he adds, but so too, are volunteers. Without Nikiforuk’s talent for giving with so much dedication – the show could not go on. AB

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WORKING TOGETHER to Improve Alberta’s Horse Industry AEF hosts the first annual Equine Industry Collaborative Meeting. BY MONIKA SMITH

BELOW: (l-r) Kristin McDonald, Marketing and Communication Manager, Alberta Farm Animal Care (AFAC). AFAC is a multi-species service and educational organization serving producers by producers for animal care and welfare, including the development of humane handling guidelines and operating the ALERT line to help producers and owners if their animals are in distress. Julie Cull, Program Manager, Participation & Equine Management, EC, presented an overview of EC, the national association that supports humans and equines and asked participants what can EC do for Albertans.


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We all know that Alberta’s equine industry is complicated, large and diverse. Ultimately, as with many complex groups, there isn’t any one governing or uber organization that can act on behalf of, or be an authority over all aspects of the horse industry. This has led to ongoing fragmentation and a challenge to speak with a unified and stronger voice. Fortunately, the Alberta Equestrian Federation (AEF) has been working for the past 36 years to represent as many facets of Alberta’s equine world as possible. With a growing membership that encompasses recreation, sport, business, welfare and industry, it has been developing programs to support these interests to the benefit of all Alberta’s equestrians. As the largest equine association in Alberta, with the broadest and most inclusive mandate of all provincial equine organizations, the AEF reached out to a number of experts and leaders in the horse industry to create a forum to openly discuss ‘big picture’ topics

that in many cases, can impact every equine owner regardless of affiliation. Les Oakes, AEF president stated this meeting was a means of looking at the horse industry at 30,000 feet. Many important ideas and issues were presented but only a few of the highlights of the meeting are included. This first annual AEF Equine Industry Collaborative meeting, held on October 1 in Calgary featured a roster of equine professionals, many with decades of experience. This initiative evolved from the Breeds & Industry sector of the AEF to start the conversation on the challenges that impact all segments of the horse industry. It’s certainly understood that Alberta’s equine world has many ‘silos’ of specialization and consequently, it can be difficult to work together. However, it is a reasonable, if not an expected role for the AEF to bring diverse parties together. As Nicolas Brown, chair of Breeds & Industry offered, “The AEF is a voice that offers advocacy for all members.” As

a result of internal discussion, the AEF hosted this day-long event. Each industry participant gave a short overview of their organizations and welcomed comments and questions on their mandates. Both provincial and national associations were invited, plus representatives from the Alberta government. Representatives from Alberta Farm Animal Care (AFAC), Alberta SPCA (ABSPCA), Alberta Veterinary Medical Association (ABVMA), Horse Racing Alberta, Horse Industry Association of Alberta (HIAA) and Livestock Identification Services (LIS) provided information and viewpoints from provincial perspectives. On the national side, Canadian Quarter Horse Association (CQHA), Canadian Thoroughbred Horse Society (CTHS), Equine Canada (EC) and Horse Welfare Alliance of Canada (HWAC) provided information and insights on their industries. In addition, the Alberta Agriculture & Forestry provided insights on Emergency Planning and Traceability. Some organizations would be familiar to an equestrian and information on them can be found at their websites. However, the ASPCA, ABVMA and LIS have legal jurisdictions through Regulations and Acts, which include health and welfare of horses. As valued partners in Alberta’s equine industry, it is the intention to bring them together for ongoing interactive sessions. Sharing best practices, planning for the future, addressing and reviewing matters affecting the industry through discussion were part of the day’s agenda. One glaring problem is the ongoing split between the agricultural or business and the ‘recreational’ side of the equestrian world, that is, people who own horses primarily for pleasure, rather than professionally, with arguably, a profound emotional and cultural divide between the two, especially within certain industries. Notably, it’s an economic divide, that is, the majority of horse owners don’t use horses to make a living and who use discretionary income to enjoy horses (sometimes making a few dollars in prize money from sport or breeding a small number of horses for sale, for RIGHT: Dr. Wayne Burwash, Vice President, Canadian Quarter Horse Association and well-known equine veterinarian from Calgary offered insights on the over production of horses and the change in demographics, urbanization, more people with less agricultural background affecting attitudes and welfare of horses.

ABOVE: (Standing) Dr. Darrell Dalton, Registrar, ABVMA talks about the role of the ABVMA, a professional regulatory association which operates for the protection of the public. One of the topics was the problem with ‘Dr. Google’ and misinformation.

example); often they don’t worry about a bottom line. This is in contrast to those individuals who have invested in horses as a business to make a profit. Over the years, certain businesses have become increasingly controversial, for example PMU, horsemeat industries, Calgary Stampede chuck wagon racing and Alberta’s feral horse population. Cultural attitudes and urbanization are in part the cause for these shifts in perception, but opinions around the table suggested that fragmentation of the industry and lack of support from other sectors have fostered more difficulties. However, as Les Burwash, Horse Industry Association of Alberta, pointed out, “When the economy is performing poorly, discretionary income disappears and thus breeding, sales, shows and competition tend to decline also. Sadly, as owners who cannot afford horses and don’t find markets to sell them, a difficult decision is made as to what to do. A few don’t provide adequate necessities, and their horses suffer as a consequence. Few think about

euthanizing horses. While many horse owners believe that sending horses to slaughter is wrong, leaving horses to starve is equally distasteful.” ‘Doing the right’ thing also segued into a discussion on the agricultural side of the equine industry. Over production of horses, a continuing problem across Canada, can mean that horses are not well cared for, if not abused. Although Alberta is well served through the Alberta SPCA (Ken Dean spoke on this) and Livestock Identification Services (Shawn McLean), they can only react to situations – members of the public phone in a concern about livestock (horses are considered livestock by these organizations) – and can quickly act on these situations. The first is to understand the problem the owners are facing and find out if this can be changed through help and information. It doesn’t benefit horses if owners who are struggling financially are charged and fined; they need help. On the other hand, if an owner is willfully negligent, the law is there for the horses. Les Burwash, Dr. Wayne Burwash (Canadian Quarter Horse Association) and Bill desBarres (Horse Welfare Association of Canada) provided historical references and practices, indicating that welfare issues tend to creep up again and again. There are only so many rescue shelters that can take horses and an important issue was raised as to the lack of regulations of rescue shelters, with concerns about those who are marginal. Dr. Darrell Dalton, Alberta Veterinary Medical Association, stated that “the ABSPCA does a great job, but should be given the authority to monitor and regulate shelters.” So, what to do that is fair to the owner and compassionate for the horse? As there is a tendency for many recreational owners to think of horses as companion... [ C O N T I N U E D O N PAGE 20] A L B E RT A B I T S | W I N T E R 2 0 1 5



...animals, rather than domestic animals—an important distinction from a legal perspective, perceptions and beliefs may not be fair to a horse. Legislation does offer some legal protection to the horse, as livestock, but not as a companion animal. Biosecurity was addressed as an important aspect of equine welfare and Alberta has developed excellent biosecurity programs with support from AEF, ABVMA and Growing Forward funding. Biosecurity is a national and increasingly urgent issue as hor ses are transported across provincial and international boundaries and old and new diseases affect horses. Julie Cull (Equine Canada) stated that it expects and has initiated a high level of biosecurity measures at its shows. Bill desBarres presented the work being done, with concerns about equine infectious anemia (EIA) and what was needed to control the increase and spread. Professional opinions ranged from considering what is the actual impact of EIA (actual number of acute cases) and what this means to introducing blanket Coggins tests and the costs

ABOVE: Brad Andres, Director of Emergency Planning, Alberta Agriculture & Forestry, provided a timely and informative presentation on emergency preparedness and the importance of rural residents to have a plan for themselves and their animals when faced with fire, flood, disease and other emergencies. Pets and domestic animals are not evacuated.

involved, to how certain sectors deal with potential infections, such as racing that requires frequent testing, to countries that don’t have EIA and require mandatory testing for imported animals. As Alberta has been through a series of emergencies in the past few years, flood, fires and disease that affect rural areas, the presentation by Brad



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Andres, Emergency Planning, Alberta Agriculture and Forestry, spoke about the emergency framework and what th i s m e a n s t o o w n e r s o f h o r s e s . While municipalities can make declarations and grant themselves powers, (that is, people and property can be conscripted and required to render aid), agricultural events are different. The number one priority

is human safety; a county will not help people protect their animals or evacuate them. The problems come from companion animals; people do not want to leave them behind. There are stories in which people refused to leave because a pet would not be accepted in a human shelter. Of note, there is a 72-hour time period where people are expected to cope without water or power. The onus is on the individual to create contacts, know the risk of the area and have a plan to deal with it. A farmer may not be able to deal with dairy cattle, hogs or chickens, but range cattle and horses? Sometimes, just leaving the gate open can give animals a chance to survive. Some issues have been around a long time, others have been evolving and new ones are to be expected, wh i ch i s why o n g o i n g i n d u s t r y collaboration is vital to the health of Alberta’s equine industry. As was noted by Dr. Darrell Dalton, this was a valuable day with lots of great information, but what is next? Sonia Dantu (AEF) agreed that many ideas and visions were shared, the needs of many made clear, however, not all could be accomplished at

once. She hoped that this meeting would formulate into an annual or biannual event and suggested that a first step to a collaborative effort of all parties, and an important one, would be for the AEF to initiate an emergency management plan for the equine industry; this would be a good initiative to begin with. What had happened in the great floods of 2013, the fires in Slave Lake of 2011 showed the AEF that emergency pre paredness was an important connection, as members and others, contacted the AEF for direction and assistance. Even without a formal plan in place, the AEF was able to help people connect with services and information, but more could have been done. Emergency preparedness is important to all horse owners and the AEF needs to be involved in providing this essential tool and resource. Without a doubt, this first meeting established that there is a need for formal discussion and collaboration with equine industry leaders and their organizations that operate in Alberta and that the benefits for doing so will benefit all equestrians in Alberta. AB

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Restoration Complete Panther Valley restoration completed.

The AEF Trail Supporter Fund, through many contributions from AEF members, contributed funds in 2015 toward the Upper Panther Valley wagon trail restoration. This project was also funded through a number of other sources. They include the National Trails Coalition (NTC) – matching grant of $10,000, AEF - $19,000 ($10,000 directly from the Trail Supporter), Alberta Trail Riding Association (ATRA), Backcountry Trails Flood Rehabilitation Program (BTFRP), Friends of the Eastern Slopes (FOESA), and numerous donations from local supporters including in-kind donations. Project logistics and access made it difficult to mobilize volunteers, but over 300 hours of volunteer time was logged. Funding allowed for 9.1 km of Wagon Trail repairs and improvements, 200m of new Wagon Trail and repairs on 2.3 km of Single Track trail. This project was spearheaded by Jay Mills, Project Manager and Chair of the AEF Recreation Committee. Restoration took place between August 4-26, 2015 and is now open to the public for horseback riding, horse drawn wagons, hiking, and cross-country skiing (snow permitting). This non-motorized trail is extremely popular to the equine 22

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community and offers scenic views. A mini track hoe and two quads were first used, after receiving permission to use off-highway vehicles on the existing trail. Upon completion of the first eight days, it was apparent that the mini track hoe was not big enough for a portion of the work. A large track hoe was brought in for the last five days in order to complete work on the slide and other sections of the trail that required significant earth work. In addition, a side-byside was needed to assist with logistics and to help haul out gear when the project was complete, due to increased water levels. The repairs and improvements have made four campsites accessible by wagon in the Panther Corners area, along with wagon access to campsites on the Upper Dogrib Creek and the Upper Panther River. Upon completion of the Lower Panther wagon reroute, only three river crossings are required to access the Upper Panther Valley. The new Lower Panther trail is now safe, sustainable and will require very low maintenance. This project has allowed many opportunities for both horse

drawn wagons and trail riding enthusiasts. Numerous trail riders and several horse drawn wagons were encountered while work was being completed. All had very positive comments and were excited about having improved access. Several Banff Park wardens were also encountered and had very positive comments. Although this project was primarily funded as a horse drawn wagon project, all repairs and improvements will also be used by trail riders. It is hoped that the trail work completed will result in more equine activity in this remote and pristine area. Horse drawn wagons provide an opportunity for transporting people who are no longer able to trail ride but still enjoy the backcountry and camaraderie of a group camp. They can be used to transport camp equipment and groceries for groups who would otherwise require pack horses. This can potentially leave a smaller footprint. Camping, hunting and fishing supported by horse drawn wagons has been used for several generations and horse drawn wagons certainly played an important role in early days of exploration across Canada. AB

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Weathering the Cold Winter presents numerous horse-keeping challenges. Here’s a list of tips to keep your equines comfortable this season. BY JENN WEBSTER

Alberta winters may see a variety of frigid conditions, during the most challenging season of the year. Formulate a wellness plan to help your equines deal with plunging temperatures, icy ground and increased nutritional requirements with these best advices.

Immobility during cold weather can have negative effects including joint stiffness and losing range of motion in horses suffering from arthritis. Ensure your horse receives adequate opportunity for exercise. 24

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1. A COAT. Hopefully by this time of the year, your outdoor horses have had a chance to develop a good, thick winter coat to help protect themselves against the elements. A healthy winter coat will help a horse insulate itself against cold winds and temperatures.

The question of whether to blanket or not is somewhat controversial however, the one basic principle of blanketing is if you’ve started blanketing your horse by now, continue on with the same practices until the weather warms up. Keep breathability in mind when choosing the proper blanket for your horse. Breathability is the ability of a fabric to allow sweat and excess moisture to pass through it to the outside air. Blankets featuring this technology are commonly designed with a “hydrophilic” (water loving) coating on the inside of the fabric that draws excess sweat and moisture to it. Temperature differences between the air inside and outside of the rug/blanket then force moisture outwards. This allows your horse to stay dry and comfortable. Also, removing a blanket daily and providing your blanketed horse with a good grooming is essential to healthy

winter skin. The many circumstances horses must face in the winter (wet conditions, little sunlight, etc.) can all add up to some nasty skin ailments underneath a blanket. 2. WATER. Even in plummeting temperatures, at a time when many people assume horses aren’t drinking much – water is absolutely crucial. All horses must have access to free choice water and it is recommended that you monitor how much your horse is drinking in the winter. Offering warm water might be a nice treat as

hide a thin horse. Make sure to check your horse’s body condition every 30 days. This means putting your hands on your horse’s body and feeling around for fat deposits – or a lack thereof. 4. TEETH & DEWORMING. Improve how your horse utilizes the feed you give him during winter by having his teeth checked and floated if necessary, and by deworming the horse prior to the winter months. If you missed doing either of those necessary horse care requirements prior to winter setting in, now’s as good a time as ever.

Improve how your horse utilizes the feed you give him during winter by having their teeth checked and floated if necessary and by deworming the horse prior to the winter months. cold water can cause your horse to drink less and become dehydrated, resulting in impaction colic. According to the Horse Industry Association of Alberta, “As a horse requires three litres of water for every kg of dry matter they eat, although horses drink less in cold weather, adequate water consumption remains a priority. Forcing horses to get moisture from eating snow is counter-productive. In addition to the fact that an average of 10 times as much snow must be eaten to provide an equivalent amount of water, horses must use precious body heat to melt the snow. Horses on snow-covered pasture will receive a certain amount of fluid through the snow they ingest, but likely not enough to satisfy their daily requirements.” 3. BODY CONDITION. Horses require additional energy from their diet to maintain body weight when temperatures drop below -20 degrees Celsius. Pasture grasses do not grow during the colder months – and digging through snow to try and get at any left over grasses from the summer, uses up the horse’s precious energy stores. Providing good quality hay at 2% of the horse’s body weight should meet his nutrient requirements for maintenance. Feeding hay also generates heat during digestion by gut microbes, and that helps horses stay warm. Provide salt blocks in fields and stalls. Winter tends to be a time when horses lose weight, and a heavy winter coat can

5. N UTRITION. Horses require additional energy from their diet to maintain body weight when temperatures drop below -20 degrees Celsius. Remember that pasture grasses do not grow during the colder months – and digging through snow to try and get at any left over grasses from the summer uses up the horse's precious energy store s. P rov i d i n g g o o d q u a l i t y h ay at 2 % o f t h e h o r s e ' s b o dy we i g h t s h o u l d m e e t h i s nu t r i e n t re q u i re m e n t s fo r m a i n t e n a n ce. Feeding hay also generates heat during digestion by gut microbes,

and that helps horses stay warm. Consider adding fat to the diet in the form of oil or bran in order to increase the amount of energy in the diet. Fat packs more energy in each pound than carbohydrates. 6. HORSES IN WORK OR PREGNANT MARES will require increased nutritional requirements to maintain healthy body weights. Consult your veterinarian should you have any concerns. 7. PROVIDE SALT BLOCKS in fields and stalls. Although salt intake is more important during the hot summer months to replace sodium and chloride lost in sweat, horses do not meet their daily salt requirements by consuming forage alone. 8. KEEP IN MIND THAT OLDER HORSES HAVE ADDITIONAL NEEDS during the winter. Feeding a diet based on beet pulp prior to and during winter can help them maintain their weight during the winter. 9. BE MINDFUL OF YOUR HORSE'S TEMPERATURE after a workout in the winter. If you must move the horse outside once it has become sweaty and heated, the horse will first need time to cool out and likely a fleece cooler to help prevent a chill from coming on – especially as you step outside. The longer hair coat your horse has, the longer he will need to cool out properly. AB Although salt intake is more important during the hot summer months to replace sodium and chloride lost in sweat, horses do not meet their daily salt requirements by consuming forage alone.

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ENG L I S H , W E S T E R N , S A D D L E S E A T & D R I V ING

All Equine Canada coaching programs are nationally recognized programs developed by discipline-specific coaching committees comprised of the best equine professionals around. They allow for growth, development and training opportunities amongst those involved – and eventually certification in one of either two streams: instruction (teaching those who enjoy their horses outside the competitive ring; ideal for those who teach beginner riders, riding schools or day camps) or coaching (for those individuals who work with students who compete). F O R M O R E I N F O R M AT I O N C O N TAC T E R I N LU N D T E I G E N

O R V I S I T T H E A E F W E B S I T E A L B E R TA E Q U E S T R I A N . C O M

Alberta Equestrian Federation




Whether you are a recreational rider just starting out or competing in a sport, these programs are available to help build your skills and confidence a step at a time, from basic to advanced levels. Become a well-rounded horse person, able to care for your horse and ride in a safe and correct manner. A structured plan allows you to track your progress and supports each step. The programs are flexible and designed to assist you to progress at your own pace. Well-written manuals and equine stable management books are available through the AEF office. AT EACH LEVEL, YOU RECEIVE AN EQUINE CANADA CERTIFICATE OF COMPLETION AND A BADGE

Check out the list of certified coaches on the AEF website; contact an Equine Canada certified Western or English coach and enroll in the ‘Learn to Ride’ program of your choice.



QUESTION: Does my insurance coverage as provided by the Alberta Equestrian Federation cover me if I am injured while riding my horse at a competition? ANSWER: As the insurance provider to the AEF and all of its members, we are asked this specific question several times each year. We all agree that our lives with horses bring some inherent risks. After all, horses are big, strong and unpredictable. Often, their response to their environment can cause a reaction that puts us at risk of injury. Horse shows can be a scary place for horses. There are often crowds of people, unknown territory and unfamiliar horses, one of these alone can make even the most solid horse wary. No one can be sure that those flapping flags, scary shadows or noisy kids won’t cause our equine friends to launch us into space or run away in a natural defense mechanism (fight or flight). The fact is that if a member is injured as a result of a horse related accident, the AEF insurance program does provide coverage. As a member in good standing of the AEF, you automatically receive $30,000 Accidental Death and Dismemberment (AD&D) coverage. The limit of $30,000 is called the “Principal Sum” in the policy. The amount paid under this policy is determined by the injury sustained and is paid as either a portion of the principal sum or a multiple of the principal sum. This policy is very broad and can even help with expenses for rehabilitation in some cases. What the policy does not do is pay for: fracture or dental injuries, for loss of income, for losses that are not directly related to horses or horse related activity. As many members already know , this basic coverage can be enhanced to include fracture, dental expenses and if wearing an approved helmet through your membership in AEF to increase the principal sum by $50,000 and is sold as an optional coverage. When we compare the number of hours that individuals spend in the saddle every day to actual serious injuries sustained, equine related activities remain a safe thing to do – but if the unexpected does happen, the AEF insurance program will be there. Capri Insurance offers a number of specialized insurance products to the horse community in Alberta, including options related to insurance for tack and trailers. For more information you are encouraged to contact Capri Insurance directly (see our ad on the last page of this magazine). AB

or phone 403-253-4411, ext 3


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Mike King is an equine insurance specialist with Capri Insurance Services Ltd. and is responsible for the insurance programs that benefit the Alberta Equestrian Federation and its members. Do you have a question on insurance? “Ask the Insurance Guy”...and we will provide an answer in the next issue Comments or questions can be sent directly to Mike at


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Here is your chance to grow personally and professionally, to develop skills, gain unique experience and make lasting connections with a team of other passionate and motivated professionals as an AEF Board of Director. AEF staff, a dedicated and hard-working group, competently manage the day-to-day operations, enabling the board to focus on matters of strategic importance and to improve programs and services to our ever-growing membership base. Become part of our team, the leading provincial partner in the equine community with a focus on program education and implementation. NOMINATION AND ELECTION INFORMATION WILL BE AVAILABLE IN JANUARY 2016


Everyone who enjoys this freedom must do their part to ensure that this access is continued. The AEF Trail Supporter Fund supports the efforts of Alberta trail builders by making funds available to support the development, maintenance and improvement of horse friendly trails, campsites and staging areas throughout the province. Many areas in southern Alberta sustained heavy damage from the floods and repairs are still needed.

If you care about the future of equestrian access to Alberta’s trails, contribute to the AEF Trail Supporter Fund. Every dollar helps!

Any contribution is gratefully accepted, however thank-you gifts are available to those who wish to receive them, at the following contribution levels: $35, a ‘Leave No Trace’ handy reference card; $60, a ‘Leave No Trace Outdoor Ethics–Horse Use’ booklet; and at the $100 level, both the reference card and the booklet.

visit for details





ABOVE: Christa Turel (Reining Coach), Krystal Hansen (Sr Reining), Maxine Whiteside (Jr Reining), Jade Fowler (Jr Jumping), Alexandra Hibberd (Jr Reining), Jada Wagner (JR Jumping) Sarah Hibberd (Sr Reining), Natalie Russell (Jr Dressage), Nicole Ostapek (Sr Dressage), Shae Lyn Airth (In front – Jr Dressage), Becky Farrell (Sr Dressage), Hunter Nesbitt (Sr Jumping), Trish Mrakawa (Team Chef d’Equippe and Jumper Coach), Lorraine Hill (Dressage Coach). LEFT: Becky Farrell. RIGHT: Hunter Nesbitt. Photos by AEF, Sonia Dantu. 28

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The AEF would like to congratulate the 2015 CIEC Team Alberta for representing our province so well at this year’s Canadian Interprovincial Equestrian Championships (CIEC), held at Wesley Clover Parks, Ottawa, on September 25-27. Thanks to all the athletes for participating and for competing with determination and enthusiasm. Special congratulations go to the Alberta Reining Team who took home the Silver medal in their discipline! Becky Farrell, dressage rider, received an eighth place ribbon; Jada Wagner, jumper rider, received sixth and tenth place ribbons. Reining rider Alexandra Hibberd received an eighth place ribbon and her sister Sarah Hibberd received second and fourth place ribbons. Krystal Hansen received sixth and ninth place ribbons in reining. Maxine Whiteside had a great round, receiving a first place ribbon in the final reining class of the event! Alberta riders, with the help of their dedicated coaches, showed their skill and attentiveness to their sport, as they only had two days to school their leased horses for the competition! AB


NOV 12, 2015

I F YO U A R E I N T E R E S T E D I N F I N D I N G O U T M O R E A B O U T O N E O F T H E S E C L U B S , O R J O I N I N G, M A K E S U R E YO U C O N TA C T T H E M ! Alberta 4-H Provincial Equine Advisory Committee Alberta Carriage Driving Association Alberta Donkey and Mule Club Alberta Dressage Association Alberta Equestrian Awareness Society Alberta Equestrian Vaulting Association Alberta Friesian Horse Association Alberta Horse Trials Association Alberta Morgan Horse Club Alberta Mounted Shooters Alberta Trail Riding Association Alberta Walking Horse Association 403-747-2240 Alix Agricultural Society American Saddlebred Horse Association of Alberta Appaloosa Horse Club of Canada 403-762-2762 Banff Light Horse Association 780-372-2080 Bashaw Light Horse Club Bear Valley Rescue 780-518-3329 Bezanson Agricultural Society 403-862-1591 Black Diamond English Riding Club Black Diamond Polo Club 780-449-5600 Blackfoot Trail Riders Border Cowboys Mounted Shooters Association Bow Valley Riding Association Calgary Arabian Horse Association Calgary Area Alberta Dressage Association Calgary Regional Appaloosa Club Calgary Regional Trail Riders 403-804-3277 Calgary Western Riders Canadian Horse Breeders Association Rocky Mountain District Canadian Registry of the Tennessee Walking Horse Canadian Sport Horse Association - AB Chapter Central Alberta Adult Riding Cooperative Central Alberta Special Equestrians Association 780-500-3599 Central Peace Horse Association Certified Horsemanship Association Chinook Country/Alberta Dressage Association 780-685-3305 Cleardale Riders Club Clearwater Horse Club Cochrane Horse Trials Committee Cooking Lake Saddle Club 780-852-8520 Cottonwood Corrals Association (Jasper) 315-854-5474 Davisburg Pony Club Delacour Agricultural Society & Community Club Didsbury Agricultural Society Edmonton Area /Alberta Dressage Association Electric Strides Drill Team Endurance Riders of Alberta Evergreen Park (Grande Prairie Agricultural & Exhibition Society) Extreme Cowboy Alberta Association Family Fun Rodeo Series Foothills Therapeutic Riding Association 403-936-5985 Fort Calgary Wheel & Runner Association Friends of the Eastern Slopes Association Fun Country Riding Club of Strathmore Gaitway to Equine Experiences Foundation - Central Alberta 403-652-7391 Gladys Ridge Riding Club 403-626-3250 Glenwood Riding Association Greater Bragg Creek Trails Association 780-835-1280 H.E.D.J.E. Society 780-903-3665 Hastings Lake Pleasure Horse Association Heart’s Haven Society Hay Lakes Riders High Country Carriage Driving Club 403-931-3361 High Country Pony Club 403-380-7046 Hilltoppers Gymkhana Club Horse Industry Association of Alberta Irma’s Lil Rodeo Club 780-754-3321 Irricana Riding & Roping Club Association Journeys Therapeutic Riding Society Jump Alberta Society 403-782-6472 Lacombe Light Horse Association 403-328-2165 Lethbridge Therapeutic Riding Association Little Bits Therapeutic Riding Association 403-556-6266 Meadow Creek Vaulting Club Millarville Polocrosse Club Miniatures in Motion Horse Club Mount View Special Riding Association 780-905-0718 Mounted Games Across Canada Alberta Association Northern Trails Riding Club Opening Gaits Therapeutic Riding Society of Calgary 403-574-2197 Over the Hill Trail Riders Peace Area Riding For The Disabled Society Peace Draft Horse Club B E S U R E TO S U P P O RT O U R B U S I N E S S M E M B E R S ! Peace Region Alberta Dressage Association Performance Standardbreds Association Polocrosse Calgary Ponoka Riding & Roping Association Prairie Dusters Drill Team Society Quarter Horse Association of Alberta Rainbow Equitation Society Ranahan Polocrosse Club Red Deer & Area Western Style Dressage Association 780-674-5191 Ridgeview Riding Club Rimbey Sleigh, Wagon & Saddle Club Rocky Mountain Gymkhana Club Rundle Riders Therapeutic Riding Association Saddle Seat Canada Shortgrass Riding Club 780-837-0092 Smoky River Gymkhana Club Society of Tilt & Lance Cavalry 403-223-8661 South Country Team Penning Association South Peace Horse Show Association Southern Alberta Trail Riders Association 403-258-3691 Springbank Equestrian Society 403-289-9066 Springbank Pony Club 403-728-3074 Spruce View Gymkhana Club Steele’s Scouts Commemorative Troop Association Stone Bridge Carriage Driving Club Strathcona All-Breed Horse Association Tennessee Walking Horse Association Of Western Canada The Calgary Hunt Club Thompson Country Pony Club Trail Riding Alberta Conference 780-829-3628 Traildusters Horse Club of Smith 403-843-6873 Tri-Country Riding Club Triple R Riding Club True Grit Cowboy Mounted Shooters Association 403-362-2581 Uplift Therapeutic Riding Association 780-685-3305 Valley Riders Saddle Club Valleyview & Districts Agricultural Society 780-675-2572 Western Canadian Wagon Train Wildrose Mounted Shooters Will For Riding Foundation

BUSINESS MEMBERS Alberta Road Services Calgary Stampede Canadian Natural Horsemanship Inc. Capri Insurance Services Ltd Creekside Equestrian Centre Digger’s Place Equanimity Edge Equine Massage Courses Equine Connection Inc. Equine Therapy School First Place Feeds LTD. Foothills Horse Transport Hairy Back Ranch Healing Soles Ltd. Higher Trails Equine Ltd Hi-Hog Farm & Ranch Equipment Ltd Horse Trekking Adventures Ironhill Equestrian Centre J. W. (Jim) Lawton Professional Corporation Julie’s Natural Hoofcare Lane Moore Hoof Care Courses Martin Deerline Midnight’s Trail Moonlight Stables Ltd Moose Hill Ranch Equestrian Centre Moose Mountain Horseback Adventures Olds College Continuing Education Outpost at Warden Rock Precision Canada Quinis Design Group Radisson Hotel Edmonton South Reitsall Auhof Sandridge Stables Spirit Winds Horse Centre SSG Gloves Strathcona Ventures The Mane Event Equine Education & Trade Show The Visions West Studio Western Horse Review Westwood Warmbloods Whispers Equine Learning Ltd. Willow Grove Stables Inc. 403-556-6266 403-933-3348 780-922-7383 403-242-6162



J U D G E P RO F I L E Beth Hacking enjoys watching confident, athletic hunter horses put in a beautiful trip. Photo by Bonnie Herbers

Beth Hacking Meet one of the AEF’s newest certified officials. BY PIPER WHELAN

Like many equine enthusiasts, Beth Hacking first became interested in riding as a child growing up in the Edmonton, AB, area. “When I was 12, a friend was about to take her first riding lesson and invited me to join her, which began my decades-long involvement in riding,” she explains. Recently, Hacking has taken the next step in her horse-related journey by earning her Alberta Equestrian Federation (AEF) certification as a hunter judge. Hunter is a discipline she has loved and appreciated for many years. “What I like best about the discipline of hunters is that it promotes happy, comfortable, relaxed, natural and technically-correct horses,” says Hacking. “The pursuit of excellence appeals to me. For me, it’s always been exciting to watch a confident, well-mannered, typey, athletic horse put in a beautiful trip.” For Hacking, the road to becoming a certified hunter judge presented itself after her first judging experiences. “I decided to become a certified official after I was invited to do some judging and it went well,” she says. “The process of becoming certified involved shadowing senior judges and earning their approval. While ‘shadowing’ may sound like a passive act, it

was anything but! I was put to the test.” Through this experience, she learned much from the officials she observed and worked with. “The judges were demanding but also open and generous in sharing their methods and advice.” In addition to the shadowing process, Hacking had to receive some formal education on the topic, and was tested on her knowledge afterwards. “It also involved attending an Equine Canada clinic and writing an exam. Letters of reference from professionals in the industry were submitted, along with a description of my equine experience and education,” she explains. “The length of time it takes depends largely on how a person schedules their shadow judging experiences and on when an appropriate clinic is available.” Now that she is certified with the AEF, Hacking is thrilled about her achievement and the opportunities it presents. “It feels good to have credentials and to be backed by the AEF,” she says. “I hope to contribute to equine sport by consistently rewarding the most deserving horses and riders according to industry standards.” And what’s next for Hacking. She aims to take her expertise even further. “I’m considering pursuing my Equine Canada certification in the hunters, and also becoming certified as a jumper judge. Really, my primarily goal is to keep getting hired and continue judging,” she says. “I hope to help shows run smoothly and encourage participation in the hunter divisions by being organized, fair, knowledgeable, efficient and pleasant to work with.” The AEF congratulates Hacking on her certification. Show organizers who are planning Wild Rose-sanctioned shows can contact Hacking and other certified officials through the AEF Officials Directory, found online. AB

“For me, it’s always been exciting to watch a confident, wellmannered, typey, athletic horse put in a beautiful trip.”


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Alberta Bits - Winter 2015  

The Official Magazine of the Alberta Equestrian Federation

Alberta Bits - Winter 2015  

The Official Magazine of the Alberta Equestrian Federation