Issue 2 â€¢ 2018
CONTENTS Issue #2. 2018
On the cover: Our cover baby is the filly Lyryc (ROL Intencyty x BHF Shahs Lullaby by Bey Shah) proudly owned and bred by MLM Arabians of Dallas, Texas. Photography by Morgan Moore.
WHOA Halterbreaking the Foal Much like pre-school for toddlers, proper halterbreaking young foals sets up a successful and positive learning pattern that will lay a foundation for all future training and interaction with people.
By Jessica Cole Red Bag Delivery A red bag delivery is an emergency. Learn how to respond to save your foal.
By Katie Navarra
66 IN EVERY ISSUE 12 President’s Letter 14 EVP Letter 16 Corporate Partners & Sponsors 17 STALLION SHOWCASE SPECIAL 24 Jibbah Jabber 26 Letters to AHL 28 AHYA 30 Praiseworthy 71 AHA Listings 75 Advertisers Index 76 Stallion Directory 78 Horses for Sale 79 FOCUS Life
34 38 40 44 50 54 60 66 70
The Best of the Best Congratulations to the people and horses who excelled in 2017.
Bringing Joy, Embracing Change US Equestrian’s 2018 Annual Meeting spotlighted progress on the ambitious strategic plan. Bottom line: it’s working!
Born to Endure Endurance riding has been a way of life and companionship (4-legged and 2-legged) for Jennifer Noblin, and she’s made it a good one.
By Faye Ahneman-Rudsenske
60 GET INVOLVED Breeders’ Q&A: Talking Horses Four outstanding breeders share a few of their experiences about the art and skill of creating new generations of Arabian horses.
By Stephanie J. Ruff
HERITAGE French & Russian Arabians French and Russian Arabians have been a part of the American scene for longer than you may realize.
By Tobi Lopez Taylor
THE NOW You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby Advances in breeding and foaling techniques mean that more often than in the past, healthy foals can be conceived, born and survive.
By Linda Carroll Rewarding Breeders Whatever your discipline, there is an AHA program where your foal could potentially earn more money as he grows up.
Issue 2. 2018
n from the president
Community Brings Us Together DEAR MEMBERS:
Show season is getting underway, and it looks like it will be a great one. I have just returned from the Scottsdale Horse Show, and I am reminded about what kind of a community we actually are. Yes we compete for awards in the show ring and on the race track, in Endurance and Competitive Trail, but what binds us together is the love of the Arabian horse. We have another great issue of Arabian Horse Life for your enjoyment. This issue is full of great articles for those who have foals coming or just love to learn about breeding and foaling. This issue will also highlight one of our exceptional youth members — Tabitha Bell. Tabitha is the winner of the prestigious USEF Youth Sportsman’s Award. She is one of those people that, when you meet her, you do not soon forget her. She is a passionate supporter of the Arabian horse and truly a great representative of both the AHYA and the AHA — basically an incredible person. I first met Tabitha when she was the keynote speaker at the AHYA Convention where she introduced us to her, at that time, new non-profit Pawsitive Pawsibilities. You see, Tabitha had been diagnosed with muscular dystrophy, but she did not let the diagnosis prevent her from riding and competing. More than that, she looked beyond herself to see what she could do for others, specifically young adults in need of a service dog. Incredibly, she has raised over $70,000 and placed five service dogs with human partners. Tabitha is our current AHYA Treasurer and continues to show and compete with her horses in the Western Pleasure division. Tabitha’s story again solidifies the bond between our Arabian horses and their owners. As I hear her story, I wonder to myself, how many others are out there like her who have overcome the odds through their horses and what an amazing gift this animal is to our soul. And lastly, our AHA Board members will once again be in Denver for a series of meetings — the AHA Board meeting, the AHYA Board meeting, the competition advisory meeting, and the subsequent Board of Directors caucus. We have a lot of challenges ahead of us to make sure we are changing with the times and continuing to evolve our association to meet those challenges. Sincerely,
Nancy Harvey AHA President email@example.com
Issue 2. 2018
n from the EVP
The Lawsuit: PAT vs AHA
As AHA nears our trial date with the Purebred Arabian Trust (PAT), the history of the merger between the IAHA and the Arabian Horse Registry (AHR) as well as the current PAT vs AHA lawsuit issues need a degree of explanation. In an active litigation the amount of information that may be disseminated is limited, but I am going to address a few misconceptions with the approval of AHA’s attorneys. The PAT and AHA are scheduled to go to trial the entire week of March 19, 2018. So this letter may get to you before, during or after the trial. The merger took place roughly 15 years ago. From that, two documents were created establishing the PAT as a third party holding company for many of the AHR assets. The first document was the Agreement and Plan of Merger. Within it, AHR gave the PAT ownership of the Purebred Database and the IBM software for which AHA agreed to pay royalties. AHA was established and continued to handle everything that was IAHA plus some of AHR. Currently this amounts to approximately $350,000 paid annually to the PAT. Since the merger in 2003, AHA has never missed a royalty payment. Subsequent to the Merger Agreement, a second document known as the License and Security Agreement was drafted, which contains language that each organization has interpreted differently. Thus the crux of the lawsuit is different interpretations of document language by the PAT and AHA. Beginning in 2005, the AHA Board of Directors began to vote on funding of what later was to become known as the Horse Registration System (HRS). AHA funded this total project to the tune of $2.8 million. During this time PAT Trustees who sat on the AHA Board of Directors and Executive Committee never disclosed PAT’s intent to claim ownership of HRS. Even more troubling is that while the PAT Trustees voted to fund the HRS project, they sometimes moved or seconded motions for the funding, again without 12
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disclosure of PAT’s intent to own HRS. This is what led to the counter-claims by AHA against four PAT Trustees after the PAT sued AHA over ownership in August, 2016. This is a very technical lawsuit and therefore is being decided by a judge, not a jury. But win or lose, neither the PAT nor AHA will go away, and both will continue to co-exist together. AHA is current both with royalty payments to the PAT and payments to our attorneys. The PAT owns the Purebred Database, which has never been a matter of dispute. At the time of the merger, making royalty payments to the PAT was established in order to insure that promotion money would be available for promotion of the Purebred Arabian. Another factor is that regardless of who the owner is, AHA will continue to have “exclusive and perpetual” use of the HRS software. Regarding the Canadian Arabian Horse Registry (CAHR), the CAHR contracted on December 5, 2016 with AHA to perform its registry work so they could close their offices in Canada, maintain a separate organization, and continue to be an independent member of the World Arabian Horse Organization (WAHO). The CAHR did not come over from the AHR at the time of merger and thus does not fall under the payment of royalty clause in the Merger Agreement. The PAT disputes this interpretation and thus the CAHR’s involvement in this dispute. There are rumors that if AHA lost this lawsuit, it would be bankrupt. Nothing could be further from the truth. AHA has adequate unrestricted legal and emergency funds to carry us through this suit. We also keep hearing that Sweepstakes and Futurity funds are in jeopardy. They are not. Thanks to the hard work of our staff, volunteers and the Budget & Finance Committee, AHA is in the best financial shape it has been in years. We are looking forward to having this behind us. Hours and hours of depositions have been taken. AHA supplied the PAT with roughly 5,000 pages of Discovery, and the PAT in turn has supplied AHA with about 8,000 pages. The time to prepare for trial on each side has been massive. Once the trial is over, it may very well be weeks before a decision is issued by the court. So briefly, this is the history and current status behind this lawsuit.
Glenn T. Petty Executive Vice President firstname.lastname@example.org
n jibbah jabber
A ONCE IN A LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT IS THE only way to describe how *Empres’ owner, Prue Critchley must have felt when Breyer contacted her about honoring her Arabian stallion by creating a model in his likeness. *Empres and Prue have also been invited to be guests at BreyerFest 2018, July 13-15, 2018, at the Kentucky Horse Park, Lexington, Ky. *Empres was foaled in 1995 at Michalow State Stud in Poland, out of a National Champion Probat daughter, Empressa. In 1995, he won Top Five in the Polish National Junior show. *Empres began his racing career in Warsaw at age three and was used in multiple Polish breeding programs prior to being exported to the Netherlands. In 2007, he came to the U.S. and won many awards, including a Top Five Sport Horse Stallion at Scottsdale. He arrived in Canada in 2011, and is owned by Prue Critchley of Manitoba. Both he and his get have excelled in the show ring as well as the race track.
THIS PAST JANUARY, 2018, BRAZILIAN BREEDER and judge Lenita (Maria Helena Ribeiro) Perroy passed away. With her, the Arabian horse world has lost a breeder who created her own “horse type” in 35 years of breeding by line breeding, with a very special eye for beauty. Lenita Perroy was born on April 6, 1937. Her family had a sugarcane and coffee plantation and bred horses. She returned to her beginnings when she acquired the farm Haras Meia Lua, a 200-acre farm spread over rolling hills, in 1981. For two years she visited studs of all possible breeds of horses and came to the conclusion that beauty had top priority for her. Not surprisingly, her choice fell on the Arabian horse. In 1983 she bought her first mares in the U.S., granddaughters and great-granddaughters of Nazeer, and all covered by El Shaklan. After another three years, a good stallion had to be found. This was Ali Jamaal. 14
Issue 2. 2018
*Empres and his proud owner, Prue Critchley. *Inset: *Empres has been immortalized as a collectible Breyer model, which will soon be available to purchase.
Ali Jamaal wrote breeding history, and with his first foal crop, Lenita Perroy stepped into the international limelight. In addition to Nazeer, El Shaklan and Ali Jamaal, Bey Shah blood was later integrated into the breeding program through some daughters. Meanwhile, the horses of Haras Meia Lua could be found all over the world. Probably the largest collection of Lenita Perroy’s horses can be found in Europe at Ferdinand Huemer’s La Movida Stud. *Unable to obtain photo at press time.
Artist, Breeder, Icon...
I WAS BORN WITH A DEEP LOVE AND connection to horses. When I found school to be challenging because I was dyslexic, I learned to read with horse books like “Black Beauty”, and I turned into a straight A student. I was always motivated by horses. In fact, it was Marguerite Henry’s “King of the Wind” that defined exactly what horse I wanted….an Arabian! Little did I know that the journey of a lifetime was just beginning. At age six, my family moved from my childhood home, and my dad promised me he would do everything in his power to get me a horse when I was 14. I believed him and spent the next eight years reading, drawing, and doing every project or book report on the Arabian horse. I had a vision of perfection in my mind — a bay with four white socks and a star. I earnestly and faithfully prayed that despite not having a barn, land or a horse trailer, somehow my dreams would come to fruition. Thursday, April 6, 1989, dawned crisp and sunny. My Dad had taken the day off work, and I was out of school for my fourteenth birthday. I was beyond excited as we climbed into his beat up Mazda truck to spend a day looking at horses in southern Minnesota. We saw signs for Merri Hill Arabians, in Montrose, Minn. I wanted to see pretty horses, even if we couldn’t buy one. We were greeted warmly by owner Howard, “Bill” Bell, and I can still hear my Dad humbly and honestly telling Bill, “We are wasting your time. Your horses are completely out of our league.” Bill assured us that he was delighted to show us the horses anyway… it was important to him that it was my birthday. I couldn’t believe that I was seeing Purebred Arabian horses with my own eyes. I could touch real live Arabians! There was a two-year-old *Abdullahhh filly outside that caught my eye. She was the only bay with four white socks and a star. Her name was Raisahhh. Looking to make herself noticed, she came prancing up and nipped my dad’s arm on the way by. I was completely delighted with her spunk! As we were getting ready to leave Merri Hill, Bill asked me how I was so knowledgeable about the Arabian horse breed. I explained about the book reports and the study I had taken on myself. Bill asked my father to send him my latest essay. I remember leaving Merri Hill completely thrilled and talking about that bay filly, Raisahhh. It had been a beautiful day. Fast forward 28 years. I am a married lady with three children. My life is a lovely tapestry woven with the average joys and struggles, and I now own four registered
Leah proudly showing off her 2017 filly by Marwan Al Magnifficoo and out of Merri Jessabell.
A life-long love story because of the Arabian horse... By Leah Greuel Leah’s daughter, Kaylee and their beautiful new filly, realizing a lifelong dream.
Arabians. All of them have Merri Hill blood in their pedigrees. Each of them holds a very special place in my heart, but there is no possible way for me to express the depth of importance of the 30-year-old bay with four white socks and a star that stands in my pasture. Raisahhh is mine. Bill and Martha read my essay and called my parents with a simple message: “This girl needs a horse! We want her to come and pick one of ours.” I agreed to stay for the summer at Merri Hill for some professional training and to give back Raisahhh’s first filly. After that, my name was put on her registered pedigree. I owned a Purebred Arabian! My life will forever be stamped with goodness from Bill and Martha Bell. Raisahhh… My happiest place was with her. She’s been in the sands of South Padre Island, in the mountains, in the Black Hills, in the deserts of Arizona, and everywhere in between. She wore out our barn light switch turning the lights on and off rapidly as she demanded her feed. Just five minutes with Raisahhh was enough to calm the worst of days and remind me that everything would end up just fine. I often rode her bareback with only a halter. Some days we headed down to the creek to cool off. Other days found us soaking her four white socks in buckets to get clean. Not because she was in a show, but because we were taking our yearly picture to include with my thank you to Bill and Martha. Every year on Raisahhh’s birthday, I sent them an update and expressed my continued thankfulness for my greatest earthly treasure. I still do. Only now my “thank yous” include more than Raisahhh’s name. When Martha passed away, I was given Merri Hill’s foundation mare, Merri Jessabell, and she came with a breeding to Marwan Al Magnifficoo! On April 9, 2017, my tenyear-old daughter, Kaylee, and I watched a beautiful four socked bay filly come in to the world. Guess what? My Merri Magnifficoo filly even had a star! My first call was to Bill. Twenty-eight years ago, I was a little girl with drawings, papers and dreams. One farm and one horse forever changed my life. While I am so excited to have this gorgeous new filly to show the world, I often walk out to the older bay mare with four socks and a star. She hears about the stresses of my days now. Real life can be tough, and for over 28 years I have had the same therapist. She reaches out her neck and gives a low whinny. Then she listens to her girl. Because at the end of everything, I am still just a girl with a very special horse. I am forever thankful to be her girl. Issue 2. 2018
n jibbah jabber
Record Setting Sale Benefits Warrior Horses for Warrior Kids
FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 23, 2018 WAS A night for the history books at the Marquise Auction during the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show. Legend is a fiberglass horse that was painted by the well-known artist Suzanne Economopoulos and is a part of the Arabian Horses for Humanity project, which looks to utilize the Arabian horse in a philanthropic way. Legend was purchased for an impressive $75,000.00 by Dan Grossman with an additional $25,000.00 donated by Arabian Soul for a grand total of $100,000.00. Another contribution of $100,000 was also given, totaling the proceeds to $200,000. The proceeds of this purchase will go to benefit Warrior Horses for Warrior Kids, a non-profit organization created by Ryan Melendez that raises money to bring awareness to Leukemia.
Issue 2. 2018
n letters to AHL Dear Stephanie, I received my copy of the Arabian Horse Life [Issue 1, 2018] this afternoon and I got so involved with it that I have now read it cover to cover in one day! What a wonderful way to start the New Year! I love that there were so many worthwhile stories and articles to read and a minimum of advertising. I know that you need the ads to keep the magazine alive, but I am delighted that you have found a way to get more substance into the magazine for those of us that are not breeders on a large scale and really just enjoy our Arabians for the wonderful companions that they are. Thank You! I know for a fact that this magazine goes out to others that are not Arabian owners because we recycle ours to the VA clinic in Oceanside. Who knows what could happen when some other horse person reads the articles in it instead of just flipping through the ads of pretty but out of reach horses! ~Mimi Gaffey Oceanside, Calif.
Nancy, The magazine this month [AHL Issue 4, 2017] was beautiful. I loved the spoon fed training articles and the features on horses outside of the main ring. For a shimmering moment I felt like this is my association. My hope that our address regarding "changing or die" will carry over to the organization itself. I hope you feature more of these training articles that focus on the tried and true classical methods and that the judges will follow suit to reward the bio-mechanically correct. Its been a hard decision for me if I will renew my membership. I love these horses. But I have no tolerance for the main ring riding that is passed off as show worthy. It is what makes people not want an Arabian horse, and we know, they are the nicest most beautiful horses on Earth. Thank you for this issue. It made my day. ~Cindy Downs
TO REMEMBER April 1 – The Arabian Horse Foundation General Scholarship Deadline May – Arabian Horse Month June 1 – AHYA Convention Eligibility Deadline June 15 – AHYA Officer Candidate Applications Due July 19 – AHYA Board Meeting July 20 – AHYA Convention July 21-28 – Youth Nationals, Oklahoma City, OK
Congratulations to our 2017 scholarship recipients! In 2017, The Arabian Horse Foundation awarded $11,000 to the following students as part of our annual scholarship process: Kriste Luedde
Ryan Murphy Clarkson University
Kelsey Dawson Colorado State University
Flora ElmColone UC Berkeley
Emelia Farago University of Wisconsin - River Falls
Solstice Peceile Fleming College
Avery Ruble Simpson College
Francesco Welter Montana State University
Kate Velez Tompkins Courtland Comm. College
Mary Baker Albion College
Scholarship Opportunities! • Due April 1 • Arabian Horse Foundation General Scholarship Application • Application at thearabianhorsefoundation.org/apply-on-line • Check out ArabianHorses.org/ahyascholarships for club and regional scholarship list • Scholarships available through the Arabian Horse Judging and Hippology Contests
UTH New! ARABIAN HORSE HIPPOLOGY CONTEST
Full Team Contest at U.S. Nationals, Tulsa, OK October 24-27
Why come to AHYA Convention?
WHAT’S IN YOUR
Here are the three things in the barn that I can’t live without! 1. The Grooms: I couldn’t do any of this without my trainers, but the grooms are a huge part of the behindthe-scenes work that goes into every ride. The grooms work harder than I could ever thank them for, and I would be lost without them. 2. Western Saddle: I was given an heirloom Western saddle that my grandmother handed down to me. It is special to me that she competed in this saddle, and it is now the Western saddle that I use in all of my classes. 3. Trophy Necklace: My Uncle Michael gave me a Bennett Fine Jewelry Trophy Necklace after I had won my first National Championship when I was 10 years old. I haven’t competed in a single class since then without wearing that necklace. ~AHYA Vice President, Sarah Porter
• Get your Youth National Qualifier T-shirt •Meet those leading AHYA and vote for new leadership •Learn about what is happening with AHYA •Meet new friends •Gain leadership skills Issue 2. 2018
DEGENERATIVE JOINT DISEASE
The FAQs of Degenerative Joint Disease and Adequan® i.m. (polysulfated glycosaminoglycan) Answered By Dr. Marian Little, DVM, Technical Services Veterinarian, Luitpold Pharmaceuticals In a recent interview, Dr. Marian Little, DVM, answers frequently asked questions regarding lameness and how Adequan® i.m. may be appropriate for your equine athlete diagnosed with Degenerative Joint Disease (DJD). Adequan® i.m. is the only FDA-approved equine PSGAG for the intramuscular treatment of non-infectious DJD of the carpal and hock joints. Adequan® i.m. is proven to diminish the destructive processes of DJD, reverse the processes which result in the loss of cartilage components, and improve joint function and associated lameness. Q: Is there a specific equine conformation type that may be more likely to develop non-infectious degenerative joint disease (DJD)? (For example, a horse that toes out, or a horse with straight hocks, etc.) A: Conformation can greatly influence the degree of wear and tear that a joint undergoes. Conformational abnormalities alter the forces applied to a joint and can potentially lead to joint instability, injury and DJD. The mature equine athlete that is performing well has likely adapted to whatever conformation issues exist. However, if you are considering purchasing a young, unproven horse, avoiding horses with significant conformational flaws will increase the likelihood of the chosen horse staying sound. In young foals and growing horses, conformational abnormalities should be addressed as early as possible through proper nutrition, balanced farriery, adequate training and muscle development, and in some cases, surgical intervention. Q: With respect to different disciplines, would a hunter-jumper or eventer be more susceptible to DJD than a cutting or reining horse? A: Any horse can develop DJD regardless of age, breed or discipline. However, the horse’s discipline may predispose the horse to developing DJD in particular joints. For example, cutting or reining horses put significant stress on their hocks and stifles, and these can be locations where DJD occurs more frequently; whereas hunters will frequently experience more front-limb lameness, such as in the coffin or fetlock joints. It is important to understand that DJD can occur within any joint that consistently experiences wear and tear, known as “use trauma,” and can occur in any performance horse, regardless of discipline Q: What is the best Adequan® i.m. (polysulfated glycosaminoglycan) dosing regimen for a horse that is diagnosed with DJD? A: When experiencing a lameness problem, it is important to first obtain an accurate diagnosis from your veterinarian in order to determine the appropriate course of treatment. Initiating a medical treatment without a firm diagnosis can lead to a poor outcome and unnecessary expense. Adequan® i.m. is Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved for the intramuscular treatment of non-infectious degenerative and/or traumatic joint dysfunction and associated lameness of the carpal and hock joints.1 If a horse has been diagnosed with DJD, your veterinarian may prescribe Adequan® i.m. (polysulfated glycosaminoglycan). The labeled dose of Adequan® i.m. is 500 mg every 4 days for 28 days intramuscularly (for a total of 7 injections).1 The series should be repeated as needed upon recurrence of the clinical signs of DJD in your horse. There is no FDA approval for, and no published data to support, maintenance dosing regimens for Adequan® i.m.
Q: In your opinion, what is the importance of using FDA-approved products in your horse versus other options? A: I cannot over-emphasize the importance of using FDA-approved products. FDA-approved products have been rigorously tested for safety and efficacy through required clinical studies. It should always be preferable to use FDAapproved products over other products circulating in the equine marketplace, such as compounded medications and medical devices, which are not required to demonstrate safety or efficacy, are not necessarily routinely monitored, and are not regulated with the same level of scrutiny. Q: Adequan® i.m. is an intramuscular injection – how does it work its way to my horse’s joints? A: Adequan® i.m. (polysulfated glycosaminoglycan) is well-supported by published safety and efficacy studies that led to initial FDA approval and has since served the equine industry for more than 27 years. After intramuscular injection, Adequan® i.m. has been shown to diffuse into the bloodstream, which transports the drug into joint synovial fluid, where it is absorbed by articular cartilage at therapeutic levels that inhibit cartilage degrading enzymes.2 Adequan® i.m. diminishes the destructive processes of DJD, reverses the processes which result in loss of cartilage components and improves joint function and associated lameness. Adequan® i.m. is the only FDA-approved equine PSGAG recommended for the intramuscular treatment of non-infectious degenerative and/or traumatic joint dysfunction and associated lameness of the carpal and hock joints in horses.1 Consult your veterinarian if you notice any changes in your horse that may signal the onset of DJD and discuss whether Adequan® i.m. is right for your horse. For more information on Adequan® i.m., please visit www.adequan.com. Adequan® i.m.: For the intramuscular treatment of non-infectious degenerative and/or traumatic joint dysfunction and associated lameness of the carpal and hock joints in horses. There are no known contraindications to the use of intramuscular Adequan® i.m. brand Polysulfated Glycosaminoglycan in horses. Studies have not been conducted to establish safety in breeding horses. WARNING: Do not use in horses intended for human consumption. Not for use in humans. Keep this and all medications out of the reach of children. CAUTION: Federal law restricts this drug to use by or on the order of a licensed veterinarian. Dr. Marian G. Little earned her DVM from The University of Tennessee in 2000. She completed an internship in Equine Medicine and Surgery at Mississippi State University. Following her internship, Dr. Little engaged in 100% equine ambulatory practice in Tennessee and Virginia. Her clinical interests include lameness, laminitis, endocrinology, and geriatrics. In 2005, she joined veterinary industry where she has supported launch of several market-leading equine pharmaceuticals and vaccines. In 2015, Dr. Little joined the Animal Health Division of Luitpold Pharmaceuticals as Technical Services Veterinarian, Medical Affairs. Dr. Little has repeatedly served as a program speaker at national and regional veterinary conferences throughout the US. Dr. Little is a current Member of the American Association of Equine Practitioners and Kentucky Veterinary Medical Association. She resides in Paris, Kentucky. References 1. Adequan® i.m. [package insert]. Shirley, NY: Luitpold Animal Health; 2008. 2. Burba DJ, Collier MA, Default LE, Hanson-Painton O, Thompson HC, Holder CL: In vivo kinetic study on uptake and distribution of intramuscular tritium-labeled polysulfated glycosaminoglycan in equine body fluid compartments and articular cartilage in an osteochondral defect model. The Journal of Equine Veterinary Science 1993; 696-703. This is a paid advertisement by Luitpold Pharmaceuticals, Inc., maker of Adequan® i.m. (polysulfated glycosaminoglycan). Dr. Marian Little, DVM, is the Technical Services Veterinarian and employee of Luitpold Pharmaceuticals Animal Health Division. Adequan® and the Horse Head design are registered trademarks of Luitpold Pharmaceuticals, Inc. © Luitpold Animal Health, division of Luitpold Pharmaceuticals, Inc. 2016 PP-AI-US-0002
egardless of how many years we are in the horse industry, we can always learn more, and a great way to learn is by talking to others. For this breeding issue, we wanted the advice from successful breeders who have been at this game for a while: Cory Soltau from Pleasanton, Calif.; Larry Jerome from Barron, Wi.; Tania Dunlap from Butte Valley, Calif. and Deb Mihaloff from Richmond, Va. The following is just a drop in the bucket of knowledge and information these influential people have learned over the years.
n get involved
talking HORSES Larry Jerome
CS: I was basically born into it. My parents started breeding Arabians in the 1960s. Back then the Arabian was the versatile horse. I had one show horse who did everything from main ring showing to the Tevis Cup because he was the only thing I had. He stayed sound until I had to put him down at age 34. He was one of those great ambassadors for the versatile horse.
LJ: I have been breeding Arabians for 60 years. I bred my first HalfArabian at age 9. We have 26 foals coming in 2018, but over the years it has varied a few horses to a lot of horses in a year.
TD: Mark and I entered the Arabian community as Endurance riders. We purchased our first Arabian mares in 1977, raised some foals, kept competing in Endurance rides and enjoyed the company of our horses. While visiting family in Bend, Ore., we met the Waltons and were introduced to an unforgettable yearling colt in their pasture â€” Bey Shah. A short time later, Jenny Walton helped me purchase a mare to breed to Bey Shah and the resulting colt, foaled in 1980,
Tell us about your history with Arabians.
Issue 2. 2018
was Bey Oro. Mike Neal presented Bey Oro in Scottsdale in 1984, and they earned a Top Ten in a very large class of stallions. Soon we were too busy breeding mares and developing our 40 acre farm to persue Endurance riding. Mark continued his full time practice of companion animal medicine while we bred and foaled out mares, shipped semen and raised foals. DM: My love and passion came about because my grandmother bred Arabians when I was a child. I remember going to the Michigan State Fair to watch her show her horses. I was given my first horse, a Quarter Horse/Arabian cross named Smokey, at age 17. I bought my first mare with with my mother, Marion Mihaloff â€” Neils Creek Rakla, who at the time was in foal to *Asadd++, eventually producing the filly MHF Rafane. That was the start of my breeding program. Eventually I moved from the show ring to Racing, and we (Deb and husband Alan Kirshner) were brought into the sport by Alec and Louise Courtelis. We went into a partnership on Flaming Tron Ku (Darley Champion racehorse), and saw the great Wiking (Race champion, leading sire and Racing Hall of Fame member) when he was initially sold in Poland.
discipline(s) are your 2. What focus? CS: Initially I did everything. Now I own/ breed Halter horses as well as participate in Endurance and Flat Racing. I still value all the traits that allow you to ride these horses, and a lot of my show horses go on to Endurance. LJ: We’re in Halter and Western now, but in the past we have shown English horses and in other areas as well. I’ve sold horses that have competed in Sport Horse and other disciplines. TD: Currently our focus is performance, Western Pleasure and Hunter Pleasure. Our primary stallion is Vici (Versace x Bey Fantasia+, by Bey Oro). DM: Our breeding focus has been on Racing and Endurance with Sport Horse being a secondary market.
physical qualities do you 3. What look for in a mare and stallion to breed?
CS: Functionality is important. Finding a stallion to compliment your mare is good. Don’t go for the opposite. If you have an ugly horse with good legs and breed it to a beautiful horse with bad legs you won’t necessarily get a beautiful horse with good legs. You could just as easily get an ugly horse with bad legs. LJ: I’m very much about the overall breed standard. I don’t focus on the motion of an English horse or the face of a Halter horse. I definitely am about a complete horse. I was brought up in the era of versatility. It is important to consider both genotype and phenotype. People are always looking at the stallion, but you need to recognize strengths and weaknesses in your own mare. I own stallions, and believe I know which kind of mares will work well with them. TD: I prefer a tall, balanced athlete with a trainable mind and a good work ethic. I love a beautiful horse, and beauty is essential in my selection of a breeding prospect, mare or stallion. There are no “perfect” horses. Even
Dr. Eugene LaCroix once told me that when you don’t breed for a trait you get it, and when you breed for a trait you don’t get it. There are some horses out there that shouldn’t be successful (based on conformation), but they are. Over the years, I’ve seen it all, and I do believe it all goes back to the horse’s heart. — Deb Mihaloff
if a horse was perfect to one individual, he may not suit another. Horse breeding is an art, not a science. DM: I have always wanted to keep as much type in my breeding program as possible. Maybe not as much as the show world, but I want to still be able to tell that they are Arabians. I look for overall correct conformation, correct legs, and a powerful shoulder. Like many people, I divide the horse into three segments looking at overall balance. The shoulder and wither is very important because typically 60 percent of a horse’s weight is carried on the front end. If you have a huge rear end, but not much shoulder or correct legs, the front end may break down from the constant push from behind.
much emphasis do you put 4. How on performance when deciding to breed a horse?
CS: They have to do something that’s physically demanding. A horse that stays sound after 10 years of Racing or is competing in demanding classes is important. I love the Sport Horses right now because a lot of them are being tested in many different ways. LJ: As a breeder, I watch many classes at Nationals. It is important to note, however, that a National Champion is not necessarily the product of two National Champions. It can happen, but it is not a given. Still, seldom do we see ability come out of two individuals that do not have some ability. TD: A variety of abilities is important. Bey Oro offspring had early success in the Halter arena including two Scotttsdale Champion two-year-old fillies. As his offspring matured, they won in Western Pleasure, Hunter Pleasure, English Pleasure, Trail, on the racetrack, in the Sport Horse arena and of course Endurance — earning that coveted Tevis buckle. DM: These race horses are proving the athletic ability of the Arabian breed. In addition, the horse’s character and disposition is also very important. We need to make sure these horses have the fabulous dispositions for which the Arabians are known. Issue 2. 2018
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How much emphasis do you put on pedigree when deciding on to breed a horse?
CS: I do look at the mare’s female family. Pedigree is not a guarantee, but it does hedge your bet. Although, there’s always the horse that outdoes his pedigree. Still, you can’t just look at the pedigree. If you breed only on paper you are in trouble. LJ: I look at it carefully, but you also have to look at the horse as an individual. Within families you are going to have a variety of differences. You now have people who breed horses, but they don’t understand much about the genetic background of the horses. They have never seen members of the family and know strengths or weaknesses of that pedigree. Knowing that is important. TD: To my eye, our top Western horses are some of the most beautiful horses in the industry, and I am drawn to those pedigrees. DM: I want to make sure the horse is what the pedigree says it should be. I’ve seen the most incredible breeding establishments all over the world. I got to see many horses, and that knowledge gave me the ability to look at a pedigree and see where certain traits came from.
conformation or 6. What temperament traits
are red flags for you and will cause you to perhaps not breed that specific animal?
CS: Temperament is important and what I think Arabians are all about. I hope we don’t lose that. As for conformation, bad legs don’t hold up, or you better get a good vet. I’m lucky that I don’t have to do too much on my horses. 24
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LJ: It all boils down to balance. Overall balance is key to the whole thing, all while staying in the parameters of what the breed is about. I want to see Arabian characteristics in HalfArabians. In addition, you have to be critical of your own horse. Correct feet and legs are a big thing for me. I’m very conscientious about them. The horses need to be mentally very stable and have the mind to do different things. Breeders need to think in terms of amateurs, not professionals, because they are our main market. Sometimes Halter horses are not suitable for amateurs. They have excitement and enthusiasm, but they also have to be able to calm down and relate to people. TD: In today’s market, I would not choose to breed to a very small horse or a horse that I felt was too reactive, or “hot”. In addition, there are leg faults that have become endemic in some very popular bloodlines, and breeders needs to determine their risks. DM: I’ve been proven wrong before so I don’t really have any traits that will completely make me say no. Dr. Eugene LaCroix once told me that when you don’t breed for a trait you get it, and when you breed for a trait you don’t get it. There are some horses out there that shouldn’t be successful (based on conformation), but they are. Over the years, I’ve seen it all, and I do believe it all goes back to the horse’s heart.
What stallions do you 7. feel have had a great
impact on the breed both in the past and currently?
CS: I built a program around Bey Shah+ with one Polish-bred mare. Serafix horses were tough as nails, and I loved Fadjur. He was a durable, beautiful horse with great legs and hip. Kontiki and *Orzel++ were great
examples of versatility being excellent racehorses that were also successful show horses. LJ: I was a huge Morafic and Ansata Ibn Halima fan as well as the old Crabbet and Kellogg horses. Important stallions included Ferzon, Bask, Ali Jamaal, Ruminaja Ali, Padron, Wielki Szlem, Fadjur, and Naborr. TD: The greats of the past: Bask, Bay El Bey++, Khemosabi++++//, Huckleberry Bey++, Bey Shah and Padron are all well represented in our current most popular stallions. DM: In the past, Monarch AH was probably the most influential stallion, in addition to MHF Eclipse and Wiking. Crownn Royal, DA Adios+/, and Our Machine are my current stallions. I know the gene pools are very strong for those three stallions.
advances in 8. What breeding have you seen
in the industry? Do you feel that they have been beneficial or detrimental?
CS: As a vet, I know we can do a lot. But should we be doing it? There are some wonderful horses out there that should or could benefit from veterinary advancements. On the down side, I don’t think we have many real breeders left. Not many people visit the farms, walk the pastures and look at all the horses. They breed from the catalogue or the magazine. With every breeding, we should be going forward. Do we want to specialize to the point where we lose our versatility? It may be difficult to find a horse that can do so many different things successfully. I don’t think we appreciate the “jack of all trade” horses, which are really the majority of the horses out there. LJ: Our horses have gotten more beautiful. We have more streamlined
elegance than we had before. Many hours and thousands of dollars are spent conditioning horses today where in the past we showed them in a more natural state. Today many horses are possessions where years ago they were companions. That has a lot to do with how the evolution of things that have taken place. When we keep breeding on extremes, we keep narrowing our gene pool. As we narrow our gene pool, we start to see problems. We double up on the strengths, but we also double up on weaknesses. I believe we need to continually add to the gene pool and do so without adding problems. TD: The advances in semen transport technology and embryo transfer have made bloodlines available worldwide. I am not entirely sure that has been a good thing. It is obviously very good for those few stallions in very high demand, but I worry that it has had the effect of limiting the gene pool and concentrating some of the less desirable physical characteristics of some of those stallions. In my opinion, the advances in genetic testing are very beneficial, especially in the context of a very few stallions producing a high percentage of the foals born. DM: Frozen semen has allowed us to breed to more diversified lines. Embryo transfer is good, but I think there should be limits as to how many foals can be born every year from the same mare. On a different note, we have gotten to such an extreme type that we are producing a piece of art. Although they are beautiful, they may have trouble functioning in later years.
You are creating something, and as a breeder you are responsible for what you are bringing into the world. You can’t just discard what you create. You have to find an element of fun. It can’t be just about collecting a ribbon. You have to love your horse, and you want to take it home even if you didn’t win. — Larry Jerome
What is your assessment of the 9. Arabian market right now? CS: I wish it was better. There is a lack of quality horses for Endurance, and that may be helping with the price right now. The reality is we don’t reward the “hard-knocking” horse. A lot of people buy horses as pleasure horses, but have no desire to compete. LJ: I don’t think it’s a healthy market right now because there is so much emphasis on immediate gratification, and the money that is spent to do these things (like showing) price
a lot of people out of the business. When you would have to spend two or three months wages on a weekend horse show, it gets hard to justify. You have to breed good horses just to try to make a return on your investments. TD: My feeling is that the market has stratified; the Halter and Performance divisions are in separate orbits. A stunning Halter horse will sell early for a lot of money. But for every superstar there are dozens if not hundreds who are “just pretty horses”, and too many are not suitable for the performance ring and have an uncertain future. Most performance horses need to be kept and started under saddle, a very expensive proposition if you have to send them all out for training. The talented ones sell for good money, and the breeder can have a bit of profit after a large investment. I have found there is a strong market for beautiful, tall, athletic, trainable horses. In my experience, the market for Half-Arabian Western Pleasure horses is especially good. I have been very successful breeding and selling buckskin, dun and palomino youngsters by Vici out of our cremello Quarterhorse mare and by our buckskin Quarterhorse stallion out of Arabian mares. DM: I think most industries have stabilized, and I feel we’ll start to show an improvement. Races have purse structure that is derived from the betting handle and not from the same people who are asked time and time again to sponsor something. I do believe the Arabian racehorse has the greatest advantage of growing because of the Middle East’s interest in both Flat Racing and Endurance. There is also an Asian market that is starting to develop. They are showing interest in both Thoroughbreds and Arabians. I feel that the Arabian, with his beauty, temperament and versatility, will give us an advantage there over other breeds.
What has been your proudest 10. accomplishment as a breeder? CS: I’ve had two mares that I bred, nurtured, and raised that became National Champions. When your own horse gets out there, that’s pretty special. Similarly, I have foaled, conditioned, rode and then finished the Tevis Cup with horses I’ve bred. That brings me a lot of Issue 2. 2018
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satisfaction. It’s also wonderful to hear about people who have my bloodlines that are doing well. That makes me pretty proud too. LJ: Thrills of mine happen when you have three home-breds there in a class of 30 horses, and all three make Top Ten. When I consistently have horses compete in all disciplines is satisfying. But nothing makes me happier then when a new baby is born. Getting to see the moms and babies run in the pasture brings me the most joy. TD: I’m still here. I still love my horses. While I won’t be earning any more Tevis buckles, I can still ride my pleasure horses. I enjoy watching my clients accomplish their goals. DM: I’m very proud that our horses have done well both in Flat Racing
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and Endurance. I feel like my horses have left a good legacy. I always say that you do not own Arabian horses. You are their caretakers, and it has been my honor and privilege to care for so many of them. In turn, we’ve been able to share great horse moments with friends and family.
advice would 11. What you give to someone
thinking about breeding for the first time?
CS: Get a mentor. Read a lot. Go and look at a bunch of horses. Always be a student of the horse and try to learn as much as you can. I don’t have all the answers, and I’m still learning. Visit farms, but keep your pocketbook at home. Spend time and learn before you jump. It’s too easy to get wrapped up in all the glitz and glamour.
LJ: You are creating something and as a breeder you are responsible for what you are bringing into the world. You can’t just discard what you create. You have to find an element of fun. It can’t be just about collecting a ribbon. You have to love your horse, and you want to take it home even if you didn’t win. TD: Stay involved. Start small (maybe stay small). Be passionate and conscientious about your breeding. Most of all, love your horses. DM: Be a responsible breeder. Don’t breed to just breed. You want this beautiful creature to reach its potential. Because our breed is the versatile breed, there are many disciplines in which they can excel. Give them that opportunity. Know your financial abilities to afford a good life for you and your horse no matter what discipline you choose.
By Tobi Lopez Taylor
French & Russian Arabians Vive la Difference Part 2 of a yearlong series focusing on different Arabian strains
hile not as well known in the United States as their Polish, Crabbet and Egyptian counterparts, French and Russian Arabians have been a part of the American scene for longer than you may realize. Since 1665, when a royal decree established France’s stud-farm system, the French have become world renowned for producing excellent horses, including Purebred Arabians and Anglo-Arabians, the latter a breed that combines the hardiness of the Arabian with the size and speed of the Thoroughbred. Napoleon Bonaparte himself was a fan of Arabians and Half-Arabians for cavalry use, and today the taxidermy body of his Arabian mount Le Vizir — given to Bonaparte by an Ottoman sultan — is on display at Paris’s Army Museum, a few steps from Napoleon’s own resting place. Horse Racing became popular in France in the late 1700s. As historians Monique and Hans Dossenbach and Hans Joachim Kohler noted, for the French people, racing was, and is, “sport, spectacle, and amusement all in one…The advances in bloodstock breeding afforded justification for races as tests of performance. Only horses successful on the racecourse were used for breeding.
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Jacques-Louis David’s painting of Napoleon Crossing the Alps shows Bonaparte astride his Arabian stallion Marengo. Named after the Battle of Marengo, through which he carried his rider safely, Marengo was imported to France from Egypt in 1799 as a six-year-old.
The history of the Turf and the development of bloodstock breeding were thus closely connected.” Stud records show that between 1800 and 1850, 253 Arabians were imported to France from the Middle East. Although many of them were bred to Thoroughbreds to produce Anglo-Arabians for cavalry use, some Purebred Arabians also were produced. Even today, French racegoers enjoy watching Thoroughbreds, Anglo-Arabians, and Purebred Arabians run. This focus on race-testing the French-bred Arabians has resulted in tall, athletic horses with excellent structure and legs, well-angled shoulders, and a good length of hip. William Robinson Brown is credited with importing the first French Arabians to the United States, in 1921 and 1922. Brown was an important early breeder whose Maynesboro stud was located near Berlin, N.H. He was heavily involved in the U.S. Government’s Remount program to produce a ready supply of hardy military horses. As breed authority Andrew K. Steen noted, Brown’s “commitment towards assuring that our nation’s cavalry was mounted upon the best horses possibly may well have been the catalyst that motivated him to begin breeding Arabian horses in the first place.”
Oration++++// (Dormane x Ortie) with Michael Desiderio
Before purchasing French Purebred Arabians, Brown first imported some French Anglo-Arabians, two of which later successfully participated in the 300-mile U.S. Endurance Test. After that, he bought six Purebreds from the Pau region of France. They were the colt *Bahka and his dam, *Badine; the filly *Babel and her dam, *Balkis II; the filly *Makrine; and the mare *Kola. Notably, *Kola was a paternal half-sister to the phenomenal French sire Denouste, whose bloodlines continue to figure prominently in Racing worldwide. The descendants of Brown’s French imports have excelled at a wide variety of disciplines. Recent winners include Hariry El Shaqab, 2017 U.S. National Champion Senior Stallion; Queen Ayda FWM, 2017 U.S. National Champion Senior Mare; Auli Farwa, 2017 Tevis Cup winner; EAF Hesa Wizard, 2017 U.S. National Champion Reining; and Buster Bey+//, 2017 U.S. Top Ten Grand Prix Dressage. Seventy years would pass until another French-bred import, Calin De Louve, who was highly inbred to the
above-mentioned Denouste, made a big impression in the United States. On the racetrack in 1992 and 1993, Calin De Louve won all eight of his starts, including six stakes races, and was named 1993 Darley Champion Four-YearOld Colt. Unlike many of his American competitors, the colt possessed several generations of Race-bred Arabians in his pedigree, and he looked quite different from typical American Racing Arabians of that time. However, as Roxanne Rogers, an Arabian Racing breeder and scholar, presciently noted back then, “If you are breeding for Racing and not taking [French-bred] horses seriously, I fear you may be left at the gate.” Fast forward 25 years, and these days, a large majority of top U.S. Racehorses are at least one-quarter French by pedigree, and often much more than that. Over the past decade, these standouts have included Darley Horse of the Year champions Paddys Day, Valiant Boy SBFAR, TM Fred Texas, Sand Witchh, Thoroughbred, and Fryvolous. Issue 2. 2018
Left — Denouste (Latif x Djaima) - Foaled in 1921, he still figures prominently in racing pedigrees worldwide. Below — For the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, the Russian government sent 18 horses, including two Arabians. Bottom — Virgule Al Maury (Kesberoy x Valse Du Cassou) He was multiple times the leading sire and leading broodmare sire of racehorses in the United States. Far right — Kann (Denouste x Kita) - This French-bred son of Denouste was purchased by representatives from Tersk Stud in 1930.
Arabians of predominantly French breeding are also seen in the higher echelons of Endurance racing. For example, French Open won the 2014 Tevis Cup, and today Nopoli Del Ma, Nabi Du Cassou, and Tidjam Al Mels are ranked among the world’s best Endurance horses. And, in the show ring, Oration++++// — a bay stallion with literally dozens of National titles to his credit — has been named an Arabian Ambassador and had a Breyer model sculpted in his likeness. French horses also contributed significantly to Russian 30
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Arabian breeding. Like the French, the Russian people have used Arabian blood to good effect to create numerous new breeds over hundreds of years, such as the Orlov Trotter, the Russian Saddle Horse, the Strelets and the Tersk. However, as Arabian historian Rosemary Archer wrote, “[S]erious breeding of Purebreds did not begin in Russian until the end of the nineteeth century,” when “Prince Sherbatov and his wife, Princess Olga Alexandrovna, set off with her brother, Count Stroganov, for Syria and the North Arabian desert, where they…purchased a number of mares and stallions… as foundation stock for the Stroganov stud near Tersk, in the northern Caucacus.” In addition, some horses from Wilfrid and Lady Anne Blunt’s Crabbet Stud made their way from England to Russia. These included the highly influential stallion Mesaoud and the mare Sobha, founder of a strong female family. But, Archer noted, “none of these horses, nor any of their descendants, are known to have survived the First World War and the [1917 Russian] Revolution.” Although Arabian fanciers may assume that Russian Arabians initially made their way to the U.S. in the late 1970s, with the arrival of *Muscat and others, in fact the first Russian-bred Arabians arrived in America in 1893. Two Purebred stallions, *Gouneiad and his full brother *Gudrun, bred by the Imperial Streletsky Stud, were part of a group of 18 horses sent by the Russian government to
be shown at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. Breed historian Carol W. Mulder called *Gouneiad, who measured a little over 15 hands high, “probably one of the best Arabian stallions imported to the United States” at the turn of the century. After the fair, *Gouneiad remained in the U.S., where he was given the registration number 21. Unfortunately, he sired no Purebred registered foals. However, Carol Mulder’s research has revealed that he did sire one unregistered Purebred filly (for early breeder Spencer Borden) and five Half-Arabians intended for use as fine harness horses. *Gouneiad was immortalized in bronze by the well-known animal sculptor Alexander Phimister Proctor, and the stallion’s skull is in the collection of New York’s American Museum of Natural History. *Gudrun, his brother, was never registered, and nothing more is known about him. In 1921, after the Russian Revolution and the ensuing civil war, the Soviet government established a remount program on land that encompassed what had been Count Stroganov’s Arabian farm in the northern Caucasus. It was named Tersk Stud. Four years later, the Soviets began a Purebred Arabian breeding program with the few Purebreds that could be found. In 1930, representatives from Tersk purchased two stallions — the French-bred Kann (a son of Denouste) and the Hungarian-bred Koheilan IV—and six French-bred mares. Then, in 1936, the Russians imported six stallions and 19 mares from Crabbet Stud. The star of this importation was Naseem, a strikingly handsome son of Skowronek. Three years later, when Poland was invaded by Germany, then occupied by Russia, about 80 of Poland’s best Arabians were stolen away to Tersk Stud. These included Ofir (grandsire of *Bask++), Piolun (grandsire of *Pietuszok), Taraszcza (granddam of *Naborr), and Mammona (granddam of *Muscat). In the years to come, the Tersk breeding program would add other imported breeding stock, including the Egyptian stallions Nil and Aswan, two gifts from the Egyptian government, and Arax and Semen, two stallions purchased from Poland. Using Racing as a tool to evaluate athletic ability, the breeding managers at Tersk attempted to expertly blend “the best characteristics from several families over successive generations to obtain an Arabian of the highest quality,” according to breeder Howard Kale, Jr., noted authority on Russian Arabians. The officials at Tersk found that offspring of their French stallion, Kann, had racing speed, greater height, and improved legs, while the Crabbet stallion, Naseem, added some Arabian type, as well as a lovely head and neck. The Polish stallion Ofir’s many positive contributions included excellent structure and good coupling.
Later, the stallion Priboj, bred by Tersk, added a better shoulder, a somewhat sloping croup, and excellent racing ability, while Arax, from Poland, sired horses with good hind legs, big dark eyes, and good overall structure. Aswan, from Egypt, had some conformational faults but did contribute type, an exotic head, and higher tail carriage. The first high-profile horse of Russian breeding that Americans encountered was the snow-white stallion *Naborr. Born in Russia in 1950, he was sold as a five-yearold to Poland, which had long wanted a male-line descendant
of Skowronek to stand at stud. *Naborr sired eight crops of foals in Poland and was imported to the U.S. in 1963 by breeder Anne McCormick, of Scottsdale, Ariz. More than 40 years after *Naborr’s death, in 1977, his influence as a sire continues in the show ring (both the 2017 U.S. National Champion Senior Stallion and Senior Mare trace to him) and on the racetrack, where his male-line descendant, Burning Sand, is a phenomenal sire of stakes winners across the globe. Until 1978, the Arabian Horse Registry of America did not accept Tersk-bred horses that were not also accepted by a registry it approved of, such as those of Poland and England. (*Naborr, for example, had been accepted by the Polish registry.) In the early 1960s, four Russian horses that did not meet that criterion were imported: the stallion *Park and the mares *Napaika, *Palmira, and *Sportsmenka. Because they were registered only in the Russian Arabian Studbook, these horses were not considered purebreds by the AHRA, and the offspring of these horses could be registered with the AHRA only as Half-Arabians. Thus, Issue 2. 2018
Left — *Pietuszok (Priboj x Taktika) - Originally from the Tersk Stud, Pietuszok was exported to Canada (by way of Poland) and is still found in the pedigrees of many successful U.S. racehorses. Below — *Naborr (Negatiw x Taraszcza) - More than 40 years after his death in 1977, Naborr’s influence as a sire continues in both the show ring and on the racetrack. Bottom — *Muscat (*Salon x Malpia) - Imported at the age of seven by Howard Kale Jr., multiple champion Muscat was part of the “Russian Invasion”.
during the years of the Russian ban, two Purebred Russian Arabians actually won Half-Arabian National titles: Brusally Pafata (*Park x *Rifata) was named U.S. Top Ten Half-Arabian English Pleasure, and Brusally Farmir (Brusally Farbast x *Palmira) won two Canadian HalfArabian Top Tens, in Halter and Western Pleasure. Fortunately, three of the four unregistered Russian horses were still alive in 1978, so they and their descendants could be registered by the AHRA at last as purebreds. With this rule change, the floodgates opened for the so-called “Russian Invasion,” led by Howard Kale Jr., who worked tirelessly to bring *Muscat, *Nariadni, and a host of other Russian Arabians to the U.S. As historian Mary Jane Parkinson has noted, “Altogether, in three 32
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years of Nationals showing (1979, 1980, 1981), Tersk imports won two Championships, one Reserve, and three Top Tens in U.S. Nationals; in Canada, three Championships, one Reserve, and six Top Tens. This record was achieved by only 11 horses.” Many of today’s top show horses in the U.S. have some percentage of Russian ancestry, through stallions such as Monogramm (via *Monogramma), Gazal Al Shaqab (via *Naborr and *Pietuszok), Khadraj NA++/ (via *Ponomarev and Patron), and Magnum Psyche (via Patron and Kilika). The Russian influence also continues in American racing, often via *Pietuszok, a stallion purchased from Tersk by Poland, who later was exported to Canada. His stakeswinning descendants include the Racing Hall of Fame members Dixie Darlene, FMR Hadassah, Magna Terra Smoky, Monarch AH, *Orzel++, Patriot Missle+/, Royal Atheena+/, Wibwilcca, and *Wiking, as well as the 2015 and 2016 Darley Horse of the Year, Paddys Day. Clearly, the long-established French and Russian programs have met their stated objective of breeding athletic, correct horses. Their legacy is found today in the pedigrees and performance of Arabians throughout the world. Tobi Lopez Taylor’s most recent book is Orzel: Scottsdale’s Legendary Arabian Stallion (The History Press, 2016). She can be reached at www.tobitaylor.com.
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You’ve Come a Long Way
hen Lisa Gaudio had to sell her beloved two-year-old Kyrie Elleison, she tearfully promised the Half-Arabian filly that someday, somehow, they’d be together again. It took 15 years, but Gaudio kept her vow. Their reunion, though, was bittersweet. Kyrie was still the same special horse that Gaudio had instantly fallen in love with, but she was now battling laminitis. Gaudio knew, even with the best of care, her time with Kyrie would be limited. Gaudio hoped for a Kyrie baby to
Above— Lisa Gaudio and husband Jimmy Kazanjian hold three foals out of Kyrie Elleison produced via a procedure called intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI).
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raise, but there didn’t seem to be any way to produce a foal from the mare without causing her more pain and discomfort. “We talked about breeding her and flushing an embryo, but it just seemed so mean to put her through that,” Gaudio remembers. She figured she might have to give up that dream. But, the vets at New Bolton Center told Gaudio there might be another option. When the mare passed away, they could surgically remove her ovaries and attempt to harvest her eggs. If successful, they could then use the oocytes to create embryos. It wouldn’t be simple, or cheap, but Gaudio figured it was worth a shot. “Other than love, there was no reason to do it,” she says. “There would be no monetary gain because I wouldn’t sell the babies.” Over the past decade or so, equine reproduction specialists have made huge advances that have allowed stallions and mares who formerly would not have been able to reproduce to have healthy offspring. At the same time, foaling specialists have made huge advances in saving foals that once would have been lost. The biggest changes have probably involved horse in vitro fertilization (IVF). While in vitro fertilization has been used in humans for decades, it took a long time for its details to be worked out in horses. That’s because the process is much more complicated in equines. Oocytes can be extracted from a living mare or from the ovaries of a dead one, but you can’t just put them together with sperm and let nature take its course. It’s not that simple, says Dr. Ghislaine Dujovne, an assistant professor and chief of the equine reproduction service at the University of California, Davis. Human sperm, for the most part, can be put in the vicinity of an oocyte, and they will wiggle over to it, latch on, bore a hole through its outer wall
and then pop through. In the mare’s body, stallion sperm receive certain signals that allow them to mature and gain the ability to pierce an oocyte. Outside the mare’s body, horse sperm need help. A procedure called intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection, or ICSI, essentially rams the sperm through the egg’s outer shell. Though ICSI has been around in human assisted reproduction for years, it took quite a while for vets to figure out how to do it in horses. That’s because, unlike human ova which are fairly transparent, horse oocytes are dark and cloudy. “So you don’t know if the sperm got in there,” Dujovne explains. Back at New Bolton, vets were able to scrape 15 oocytes from Kyrie’s ovaries. At the time, New Bolton wasn’t doing ICSI so the eggs were shipped to Texas A&M where ten of the eggs matured successfully and were fertilized with sperm from Vitorio TO. In the end, four of the eggs yielded healthy embryos, which were implanted into surrogate mares. Remarkably, three took hold and continued to grow, and in the spring of 2017, three Kyrie babies were born: Epona Elleison, Big Man In Town and Elle Vitorina. Vets have managed the same process with oocytes gathered from living mares, but the procedure can be incredibly painful even with medication, says Dr. Tamara Dobbie, an associate professor of large animal reproduction at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine and director New Bolton’s Hofmann Center for Animal Reproduction. And that’s especially true for younger, maiden mares, Dobbie says. She recommends embryo transfer as a better choice for these mares. Even when the mare is otherwise healthy, there can be problems that once would have precluded her from reproducing. Take the mare R-Star, a
Above— R-Star, a top jumper who tore her cervix with her first pregnancy.
Top and bottom left— Two healthy foals out of R-Star were born via embryo transfer.
Holsteiner and top Jumper, who tore her cervix with her first pregnancy. The foal was still born and the scarring prevented R-Star’s cervix from opening and closing which left her uterus vulnerable to infection and inflammation. Years ago, this would have been the end of the mare’s reproductive life. But vets at UC Davis brought R-Star in, bred her via transported semen and kept her on antibiotics long enough for any resulting embryos to mature to the stage where they could be collected. As it turned out, two embryos were found, one big and one small, and Dujovne and her team implanted them in two surrogate mares and crossed their fingers. Both embryos thrived and when spring came, two healthy foals were born.
ICSI has also been a boon for stallions with less than optimal sperm. So long as vets can find at least one good one, it can be used to fertilize an egg and produce a foal. Sometimes, though, pregnancies can be achieved in vivo — so long as the timing is perfect. Take the example of a stallion who showed up at Cornell University with semen containing just 13 percent normal sperm. In general, that would mean the chances of getting mares in foal would be very low, says Dr. Mariana Diel de Amorim, a lecturer in the section of theriogenology at Cornell’s College of Veterinary Medicine. Diel de Amorim and her colleagues closely monitored the stallion’s mares and inseminated them Issue 2. 2018
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as near to ovulation as possible — and it worked. Just as mare owners have an option if they know they’re going to lose their precious horse, so do stallion owners. “If a stallion dies or needs to be euthanized, his fertility can be preserved by removing his testicles, collecting the sperm in them and then freezing them,” Diel de Amorim says. Advances in reproduction don’t end when the mare is declared to be in foal. While most mares deliver their babies with no human intervention, a certain percentage get into trouble during labor because the foal has ended up in a bad position. When it’s just a case of a foreleg that’s positioned a little back or shoulders that are large enough that the mare is having trouble pushing them out, owners and foaling assistants can often manage on their own or with a little help from their vets. But sometimes the dystocia is severe and the mare needs to be rushed to a clinic. At New Bolton Center, vets often get referred mares that would have previously been considered hopeless. For example, in cases where the head and neck are back or the forelegs aren’t extended, it’s nearly impossible to reposition the baby while the mare continues to strain to push it out, Dobbie says. At New Bolton and places like it, mares like this are put under general anesthesia, Dobbie says. Then they are laid on their backs and their hind end is hoisted up. “That way all the guts and everything is flowing towards the mare’s head,” Dobbie explains. “You can fill the uterus with lube. It makes things so much easier when you don’t have that much straining. I don’t know exactly what percentage we get out that way, but it’s a good percentage.” If it looks like the foal is struggling and its head is in sight, the vets will pass a tube through its nostrils so the baby can be given arabian horse
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Right — A mare is placed under general anesthesia to get her foal repositioned. Photo courtesy of University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, New Bolton Center.
Below — Two embryos that can be flushed and placed into surrogate mares via embryo transfer.
oxygen while they work to get it out. “You can be breathing for the baby the whole time,” Dobbie says. “That can make a tremendous difference and reduce morbidity in the foal.” Sometimes even that method won’t work, Dobbie says, adding that some foals are twisted up like pretzels. In those cases, the mare goes on to a caesarian section. While trying to reposition a foal, “we always have a crew waiting in case the mare needs a c-section.” Occasionally, when the baby’s
bloodwork is checked after delivery, there are a host of abnormalities. “We used to think a lot of the foals that came out looking sick were starved for oxygen,” says Dr. Michelle Abraham Linton, a staff veterinarian in internal medicine and emergency critical care at New Bolton. “But a lot of them have been in an environment where there is a lot of inflammation. If the mare has inflammation in her blood stream that means the foal will, too. Despite the abnormal blood work, there may be nothing wrong with the foal, Linton says. But the baby needs to be given supportive care until the inflammatory markers dissipate. Even when everything goes right with a delivery and the foal seems okay, it can start to behave oddly once it gets up — wandering around the stall looking lost and maybe trying to nurse on a water bucket. “They just look a little like they’re on a different planet,” Linton says. They’ve been dubbed “dummy foals,” and vets used to assume that their behavior was due
Over the past decade or so, equine reproduction specialists have made huge advances that have allowed stallions and mares who formerly would not have been able to reproduce to have healthy offspring. to oxygen deprivation. Until very recently the standard was to give them supportive care for a couple of weeks with the majority of them eventually recovering. But the care was time consuming and taxing. Recently, though, vets at UC Davis came up with another theory: the foals were just sleepy. “The idea,” Linton explains, “is that something that normally happens during the birthing process didn’t trigger in these foals.” When foals are in the uterus they are kept quiet and sleepy with hormones called neurosteriods, which circulate through their bodies. Normally, after foaling the levels of
these hormones drop off precipitously. But in dummy foals, they remain high, Linton says. “So they’re almost acting like they do when they are still in the uterus.” Dr. John Madigan, a UC Davis veterinary professor and expert in equine neonatal health, suspected that the pressure the foal went through during delivery somehow sent a shut off message so the baby would wake up and be ready to start moving as soon as it was on the ground. He and colleagues started experimenting with a method, in which a foal was “squeezed” with ropes tied around its body. The idea was that the squeezing would simulate the birth process and allow
the neurosteriod levels to drop off. “It basically resets the foals,” Linton says. “It’s as if in a way they are being reborn. And it works.” All of these advances mean that more often than in the past, healthy foals can be conceived, born and survive. Linda Carroll is a Peabody Award winning writer who covers health and medicine for NBC News. She is coauthor of “The Concussion Crises: Anatomy of a Silent Epidemic” and “Duel for the Crown: Affirmed, Alydar, and Racing’s Greatest Rivalry.” She is also the owner of Fiery Run Farm and breeder of FR Hercules.
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Rewarding BREEDERS I
f you are a breeder, you have the option of enrolling your horses in potentially money making incentive programs through AHA. The organization awards more than $2 million in prize money annually through the Breeders Sweepstakes, Halter Futurities and Performance Futurity/ Maturity Programs. If you are a serious breeder committed to creating competitive horses, these programs allow you to showcase your yearlings on up through your aged horses in front of Regional and National audiences. Halter Futurity winners can earn thousands of dollars in just one class during their three-year-old year. Horses enrolled as Breeding Entries are eligible to win prize money at the Regional and National level for their entire lives.
Arabian Breeders Sweepstakes Get in on the best way to market your horse for a lifetime, starting with the enrollment of your upcoming foals. Nominated foals will have a lifelong opportunity to earn prize money from the Breeders Sweepstakes Program. Only horses enrolled as Breeding Entries are eligible to win Sweepstakes Prize Money in the designated Regional and National Classes. What does this mean for you? Nominating your upcoming foal is the best way to provide your foals with that competitive edge desired when selling or promoting your next champion.
Halter Futurity Show off your young stock before a National audience in the most economical breeding program around â€” Halter Futurities. For only $70 you can enroll an in-utero foal with an option to pay just $35 to renew the horse every year. Three-year-olds may be presented at Canadian and/or U.S. Nationals to enthusiastic fans eager to see what horses and what breeding programs are truly the best.
Performance Futurity/Maturity Arabians and Half-Arabian/Anglo-Arabians can compete in Performance Futurity/Maturity classes at the U.S. Nationals. These classes feature the best of the breedâ€™s young athletes, and some of these young horses are sold before they even leave the arena. It is a wonderful marketplace to showcase the best and brightest that the industry offers. For more information on any of these program, go to ArabianHorses.org or contact AHA directly. 38
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Submitted by Thomas Olson With presents like these, you canâ€™t go wrong!
Submitted by Deane Taylor Twenty-eight years young, and still going strong.
Submitted by Emmie Cor A cotton-candy sunset shared among friends. Submitted by Christi Stewart A lovely bride and her Arabian.
Submitted by Anne Elshoff Mom gives the best scratches!
Submitted by Ava Toporek An accomplishment of which to be proud.
The Arabian Horse Association's (AHA) member magazine, Arabian Horse Life (AHL) is due to hit mailboxes the last week of March. Now going to...
Published on Mar 19, 2018
The Arabian Horse Association's (AHA) member magazine, Arabian Horse Life (AHL) is due to hit mailboxes the last week of March. Now going to...