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45 years of breeding excellence pays off at World Clydesdale Show > Page 6
Schlosser capps off career with ‘Cowboy of the Year’ honours I did it my way Personal profile By Amie Peck
anton native Blake Schlosser is what cowboys call a “good hand.” He can do it all — he is an excellent roper, a talented pick-up man and an accomplished horseman. He has worked as a stunt man in movies including The Assassination of Jesse James, Shanghai Noon and The Virginian. He raises cattle on the family farm with wife Monica, son Stran and daughter Reata. They also run their own horse breeding operation with 10 colts on the ground each year. His lengthy career as a respected pick-up man all over western Canada culminated with the highest award in 2011 — PCRA Cowboy of the Year. His career in rodeo began in the early 80s at a Bucking Horse School and Sale held by Tom Bews. It was there that Wayne Vold, stock contractor to the Nanton Nite Rodeo, spotted him and asked him to work as a pick-up man. He was soon doing the “main run” of rodeos with Vold Contracting that included stops in Stavely, Rocky Mountain House, Innisfail, Wainwright, Ponoka, Strathmore and Okotoks to name a few. Schlosser estimates he has worked at an average of 20 rodeos a year for the past decade. He has worked the ranch rodeo finals in Edmonton, and had the honour of being selected for the Canadian Finals Rodeo (CFR) for the first time in 1989. Since then, Schlosser has worked at the CFR seven times over his career, including 2011. He says it’s
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photo courtesy northlands
Blake Schlosser, with daughter Reata at his side, proudly holds his Jay Contway bronze award after being named 2011 PCRA Cowboy of the Year.
always an honour to be selected as a pick-up man for the CFR because you are chosen by the competitors who trust you with their safety in the arena. Schlosser has always been aware that part of his success in the rodeo arena is due to his horses, most of which he has started and trained himself. “A good pick-up horse has to have lots of speed,” he explains. “They also need a big heart and not be scared of much. I like them to be pretty well broke, and for that we use them all on the ranch. Usually to get them ready for working in the arena I will tie a couple of them from saddle horn to saddle horn. That way they get used to all the bumping and jostling that they will encounter with the rough stock.” Over the years, Schlosser has learned countless things from his horses, but one lesson stands out most. “You have to let the horses figure it out for themselves,” he says. Not all of the horses he trains will end up as pickup horses. “Some of them don’t work out. Sure, you can get the job done, but they didn’t enjoy it. I want a horse that likes the job — it makes it easier on me.” Although working rodeos means a lot of travel and being away from home, Schlosser says the best part of being a pick-up man is the opportunity to meet a lot of different people. “You also get an adrenaline rush every performance,” he says. “That can get quite addictive.” It’s not all fun and games working at the rodeos though. “The worst part about being a pick-up man is all the rainy rodeos and working in the mud,” laughs Schlosser. “I’ve been pulled off a few times in conditions like that and it ain’t fun!” As a pick-up man you have a front-row seat for some pretty Schlosser
continued on page 5
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Volume 35 • Number 1 • January 2012
www.horsesall.com Editor: Sherry Butt firstname.lastname@example.org Sales Manager/Major Accounts: Craig Couillard (403) 200-1019 email@example.com Alberta/Classifieds: Crystal McPeak (866) 385-3669 (toll free) firstname.lastname@example.org Sask./Manitoba/B.C.: Tiffiny Taylor (204) 228-0842 email@example.com Ontario/Quebec/National Accounts: Lisa Graham (519) 836-4072 firstname.lastname@example.org Ontario/Quebec/National Accounts: Denise Bott (519) 836-4072 email@example.com Publisher: Bob Willcox firstname.lastname@example.org This month’s contributors: Cynthia Bablitz, April Clay, Wendy Dudley, Dianne Finstad, Heather Grovet, Robyn Moore, Amie Peck, Glenn Stewart and Carol Upton.
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From the editor
always look forward to a new year. It’s an opportunity to start over, to reevaluate your goals, discard those that aren’t working and draft new ones that will keep you moving forward. April Clay, psychologist and author of our monthly The Thinking Rider column, got me thinking about the value of evaluating what went on during the year, before coming up with goals for the year ahead. Although her story — Debrief to sharpen 2012 goals — is geared for equestrian competitors, I think the information is valuable for any occupation or sport. The story encourages you to evaluate your performance during the year and discourages you from only looking at your performance in terms of wins and losses. To do so, you’re certain to miss valuable information that can help keep you positive and motivated to reach your goals in whatever endeavour you take on. Remember to celebrate all the little things that happened throughout Please send the year that brought your comments you to where you are today. and questions In addition to April’s column, we to sherry@ have several stories that should inspire fbcpublishing.com you to reach for your dreams and “get ’er done” in 2012. On the cover, meet a hard working pick-up man, Blake Schlosser, who capped off his long career with a huge win — the 2011 Cowboy of the Year award. Professional barrel racer, Gaylene Buff, is no slouch either: she took home the Cowgirl of the Year award and is our “Woman of the West” for January. Check out all you can see and do at the Horse Breeders and Owners Conference with our coverage on pages 16-18. Just one of the many exceptional speakers at this year’s conference is Terry Grant, star of the TV hit, Mantracker. If you haven’t registered for the conference yet, there’s still time. Visit www.albertahorseindustry.ca and click on “Conference” on the top menu. The conference runs January 13-15, 2012 at the Capri Centre in Red Deer, AB. As always if you have any comments or questions about what you’ve read in Horses All please send me an email to email@example.com.
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Departments Association news .......................... 20/21 Bits and Bites ................................ 4 Calendar of events ........................ 19 Doing it my way ........................... 1 Eye on the industry ...................... 10 Get a grip ...................................... 12 Hands on horsekeeping ................ 10 Homeward bound . ....................... 15 Horse and home ........................... 8 Horse heroes ................................. 6 In it to win it ................................ 6 Inspirations ................................... 9 It’s our way of life ......................... 7 The thinking rider ........................ 13 Time to chill ................................. 14 Women of the west ...................... 11
JANUARY 2012 | www.horsesall.com
contents Schlosser caps off career with “Cowboy of the Year” honours .......................................................
Mounted Unit is fine example of positive policing in community .............................................................
Clients refer to stone, wood and steel artisan as “Renaissance Man” .............................................................
Chinooks demand direct, hands-on horse care .............................................................
Gaylene Buff revels in unexpected “Cowgirl of the Year” win at CFR ..........................................................
ASSOCIATION NEWS Off season still busy for Chinook team penners Chinook Team Penning Association ...........................................
Dena and Gerald Fuss named volunteers of the year Performance Standardbreds . .......................................................
Agribition finds new home for buckskin overo filly Saskatchewan Paint Horse Club ..................................................
Year-end awards celebrate the best in chuckwagon sport World Professional Chuckwagon Association . ........................... 21 Lucky Diamond Chip makes all four leading sires lists Alberta Paint Horse Club .............................................................
Replace lost income with new insurance policy benefi Alberta Equestrian Federation .....................................................
Chinook driving club reviews fun-filled year Alberta Carriage Driving Associatio ............................................
Look for more Association News Online at www.horsesall.com 3
and Bites Reining Committee establishes award in memory of Kaylynn Malmberg OTTAWA, ON
n memory of a very special young lady, the Canadian Reining Committee is establishing the Kaylynn Malmberg Young/Junior Riders Reining Award. The award will be presented to a young member of the reining community that most exemplifies Kaylynn’s love of horses, determination, courage and inspiration. Nominee submissions will be requested each year and the award will be presented to the person who shows courage and determination to overcome the most difficult obstacles and distress in order to achieve his/her horse related dreams; unselfishly provides support by helping wherever required;
inspires by example — even at the most difficult time; exhibits a positive attitude and puts that extra effort into any activity; and goes above and beyond what is required for self or others regardless of any personal situation. Kaylynn Malmberg was a strong young lady who in 2010 left an Alberta hospital after chemotherapy following brain surgery and flew to Lexington, Kentucky to compete with her team in the North American J u n i o r a n d Yo u n g R i d e r s Championships in Reining. During the week long competition she became a celebrity, not only because she was a member of the gold medal winning Alberta team, but also because of the person she was.
“There is no greater tragedy in life as that of a young person taken far before her time,” said Gary Yaghdjian, chair of the Canadian Reining Committee. “With that in mind we are able to honour Kaylynn Malmberg’s courage, determination, and her ability to overcome adversity by offering the Kaylynn Malmberg Young/Junior Riders Reining Award.” Watch for more details on the Kaylynn Malmberg Young/ Junior Riders Reining Award in the next few weeks. For additional information on the CRC and its programs, please visit the Equine Canada website at www.equinecanada. ca/reining or e-mail reining@ equinecanada.ca.
Martin Black takes on Trainer’s Challenge at 2012 Mane Event
he Mane Event, Equine Education and Trade Fair is extremely pleased to welcome well-known cowboy, rancher, horseman and clinician, Martin Black, as one of the competitors in its colt starting competition, the Trainer’s Challenge, at the upcoming expo at Westerner Park in Red Deer, AB, April 27-29, 2012. Being an Idaho rancher is in Martin Black’s blood. For five generations, both sides of Martin’s family have ranched in Owyhee County, Idaho. Martin Black grew up working on the family ranch and after high school, left home to work on other ranches with top horseman in Idaho, Nevada and California. At age 24 he took a management position on a 1.25 million acre ranch running 400 horses and 15,000 head of cattle in Northeast Nevada. After more than 30 years of cattle
being the primary source of income and horses being the secondary, Martin decided to make his living working with horses. With his reputation on the ranches and in the arena, it wasn’t long before he was travelling coast to coast in the U.S., Australia, Europe and Brazil. Along with contract colt starting around 400 horses annually, Martin also does public and private clinics. Martin has worked with “hall of fame” and all time leading trainers of cutting, reining and race horses. He started Pleasantly Perfect who went on to win in excess of $7 million, as well as Smart Little Scoot who is the all-time leading money earning son of Smart Little Lena and numerous other champions in cutting, reining and reined cow horse. Martin has earned over $75,000 in stock horse and National Reined Cow Horse
Association (NRCHA) events, as well as roping, saddlebronc and camp drafting competitions. He has competed in the Worlds Greatest Horseman three years in a row, scoring in the top 10 in roping, reining and cowworking go-rounds. A multiple finalists at NRCHA World Show, Ranch Horse Association of America National Champion Cowboy, winner of the Open Ranch Horse in Abilene, TX, and World Finals Ranch Rodeo, Open Champion Ranch Horse two years in a row in Amarillo, TX. Martin was a participant in the 2006 Road to the Horse Colt Starting Competition in Tennessee and the winner of the Trainer’s Challenge at the 2009 Mane Event in Chilliwack, BC. Visit www.maneeventexpo. com for more information on clinicians, hours and tickets or call (250) 578-7518.
Fafard’s Running Horses now gallop past National Gallery of Canada OTTAWA, ON
herd of prairie horses, created in steel by Saskatchewan artist Joe Fafard, is now running past the National Gallery of Canada (NGC). The newly installed work, Running Horses (2007), was purchased by the NGC in 2008 with the support of the Gallery Foundation. With manes and tails streaming out behind them, the herd of horses in shades from rusty red to yellow to black appear to gallop along Sussex Drive towards downtown. An elegant mare leads the herd, followed by other mares and colts, while a muscular black stallion brings up the rear. Made from laser-cut steel, each horse is a less-than life size silhouette-like form with various cut out patterns in its body. These negative spaces enable the viewer to see through each horse, creating a layered effect. Viewed head on, each horse is a narrow sculptural form made from quarter inch steel and supported by a solid bronze cast base that has been sculpted and painted to look like wind-blown prairie grass. Among the 11 horses, no two are identical: there are six different variations of cut out patterns and each horse is painted in a unique manner. While the laser-cut patterns are suggestive of dappled or certain types of pinto markings, they come from the artist’s imagination. “I love the idea of Fafard’s wild horses running along with the traffic on Sussex Drive,” said NGC director Marc Mayer. “We haven’t had a sculpture in front of the gallery’s main driveway in many years. This work is a wonderful evocation of western Canada by one of our most beloved artists.” There are five other works by Fafard in the NGC collection: Bull (1970), E II R (1978), and Cézanne (1981) are three early works in ceramic; Silvers (1999) and Western Dancer (2003) are two later works in bronze.
ABOUT JOE FAFARD Joe Fafard, a twelfth generation Canadian, is a sculptor best known for creating objects which reference community
and farm life. His career has boldly blazed a path for the reinvigoration of sculpture in the contemporary Canadian art scene. Born into a farming family in the French-speaking community of Sainte-Marthe, SK, Fafard showed a keen interest in art from a young age. He completed a bachelor’s degree in fine art at the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg in 1966, and a master’s degree at Pennsylvania State University in 1968. He returned to Canada to teach sculpture and pottery at the University of Saskatchewan in Regina. In 1974 he left teaching, and settled in Pense (SK) to sculpt full time. Fafard’s career took a major shift in the early 1980s when he won a commission from the Toronto Dominion Bank to create a new public art installation. The commission propelled Fafard into a new phase of creation with a new medium: bronze. In 1985 Fafard opened his own foundry, Julienne Atelier Inc., in Pense. Fafard was awarded the Order of Canada in 1981, the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada Allied Arts Award in 1987, an honorary doctorate from the University of Regina in 1988, and the Saskatchewan Order of Merit in 2002.
ABOUT NGC The National Gallery of Canada is home to the most important collections of historical and contemporary Canadian art, including the extensive collection of the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography. The Gallery also maintains Canada’s premier collection of European Art from the 14th to the 21st century, as well as important works of American, Asian and Indigenous Art and renowned international collections of prints, drawings and photographs. Created in 1880, the National Gallery of Canada has played a key role in Canadian culture for well over a century. Among its principal missions is to increase access to excellent works of art for all Canadians. To do so, it maintains the largest touring art exhibition programme in the world. For more information: www.gallery.ca
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
photo courtesy northlands
Taylor Jane Gardner, of Douglas Lake Ranch, presents Blake Schlosser with the prestigious title of PCRA Cowboy of the Year for 2011 as his wife Monica, son Stran and daughter Reata watch on.
from page 1
wild scenes, he says. “There was a bull one time at the Rocky Mountain House rodeo,” remembers Schlosser. “He jumped through the fence and into the crowd. Another time, at Ponoka, a bareback horse tried to jump out of the arena and was caught up in the top rail of the stands.” He has had his pick-up horses gored by bulls as he tried to haze them out of the arena. His favourite bucking horse, a saddle bronc mare named Shoestring, turned out to be the opposite of wild. “This old mare was actually halter broke and really gentle — you could lead her out of the arena — but she really bucked hard too.” After 27 years as a pick-up man, Schlosser decided to retire at the end of the 2011 season. “I made the decision at the Wainwright Rodeo that this would be the last year for me,” he explains. “I want to spend more time with my kids but at the same time I will miss seeing everyone I have met over the years at the rodeos.” He was excited to learn that he had been chosen to work the CFR for what would be his last year as a pick-up man. “I couldn’t have planned it any better,” he says, unaware at the time of the real award to come. As he was preparing his first horse on the first night of the CFR, Schlosser recounted that he wasn’t even thinking about which award was about to be announced. “I was going to use a younger horse of mine for the first performance and so I was totally focused on preparing him to go into the arena.” It was
“I made the decision at the Wainwright Rodeo that this would be the last year for me.” — schlosser
then that Schlosser heard his name announced as winner of the 2011 PRCA Cowboy of the Year award. “I was surprised and shocked. I had no idea until they announced my name during the grand entry of the first performance. It was amazing — they lowered the trophy down from the ceiling!” The Cowboy of the Year Award is sponsored by the Douglas Lake Ranch and the winner is chosen from a selection committee consisting of Joe Gardner (Douglas Lake Ranch), Dale Leschuitta (president of the CPRA) and the previous recipient of the award. The honour is presented to the cowboy judged best in ability, sportsmanship, appearance and personality and his contribution to the betterment of rodeo in Canada. It seems that after his long dedication to the sport of rodeo, combined with the respect of his peers and ability to consistently perform in the arena are what made Schlosser the best choice for the award — and an excellent way to cap off the career of this talented pickup man. t
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45 years of breeding excellence pays off at World Clydesdale Show Horse heroes Profiles of exceptional horses By Robyn Moore
t all started about 45 years ago when Allan Gordeyko began breeding Clydesdales. During that time, Allan imported 35 Clydesdales from Scotland and incorporated them into his breeding program. Today, they are some of the most sought after horses in North America with numerous geldings and stallions sold to Anheuser-Busch and its famous Budweiser Clydesdales. Allan and his son Wesley own Willow Way Clydesdales, located in Ohaton, AB. Together, they farm 3,000 acres and manage a herd of about 90 horses. Of these 90 horses, only one was chosen to take to the 2011 World Clydesdale Show. That horse was Willow Way Jolie, a two-year-old filly. At the last world show Allan and Wesley had the World Champion six-horse hitch of mares. This year, they left the hitch at home and decided to take only halter horses. Kristen, Wesley’s partner, says, “We ended up selling a few we had entered, and in the end just decided to take Jolie.” She was chosen because she is the
best young prospect on the farm, Kristen adds. “Having so many foals in a year, there are usually only one or maybe two females or males in any given birth year who are shown at all by us,” she explains. “The majority of the horses on the farm are breeding stock, older mares and stallions, and we haven’t been showing many mature stallions lately. The broodmares are left on the farm to raise foals.” The World Clydesdale Show was held in October in Wisconsin. Over 600 Clydesdales competed for the world championships and breed enthusiasts came from Scotland, England, Northern Ireland, Germany, the Republic of Ireland, Australia and New Zealand to see the show. The results were unprecedented, with all three world championships going to horses bred in western Canada. Willow Way Jolie was named Grand Champion Mare as well as Jr. Champion, Jr. Champion Bred and Owned by Exhibitor, and Best Canadian Bred Mare. The Gordeykos put all their faith in Jolie. A risky gamble, but one that paid off. Born on April 29, 2009, Jolie stood out from the other 35 foals born that year. She is sired by Zorra Highland Captain and out of Willow Way Chanel. Her Dam, Willow Way Chanel, was Supreme Champion at the Calgary Stampede in 2005, and Reserve Champion Mare at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair in Toronto in 2005. Jolie is a beautiful bay. “She is as beautiful on the inside as she is on the outside. She is a mare with a gorgeous, kind eye,
Two-year-old filly, Willow Way Jolie, from Willow Way Clydesdales in Ohaton, AB, was the star of the 2011 World Clydesdale Show.
and has such character. A real sweetheart of a mare,” says Kristen. Breeder and owner, Wesley Gordeyko, has shown Jolie since she was a yearling and since that time she has been undefeated in her age class. As a yearling she was Champion Mare at the Central Alberta Draft Horse Classic, beating her dam who was Sr. Champion that day. But all of those shows were just practice leading up to the World Clydesdale Show. “It seemed like the day of the show she knew she was there to win. She loved every minute of her preparation, stood
like a statue in line waiting to be shown, and put on a real show when it was her time to go in front of the judge,” recalls Kristen. Grand Champion Mare is a big title for a young filly and a credit to the longstanding breeding operation at Willow Way Clydesdales. And for this young filly, the future is bright and the possibilities are endless. “Our plans for her are to keep showing her. She won’t be bred until she is four. We will maybe break her to drive in the future, and use her in our hitch of mares,” says Kristen. t
Canucks set to compete at Road to the Horse 2012 In it to win It Competitor profile By Amie Peck
oined as the “World Championship of Colt Starting”, the Road to the Horse competition brings together a few elite horse trainers every year to compete and showcase their skills and talents. For attendees — who are able to actually meet and talk to the competitors and witness them in action — this unique event is both an exhibition and an educational experience. This year, the format has changed from three to four trainers competing against each other to three teams with two members each, competing for top honours. This new format allows for trainers to use their partners for guidance and support throughout the competition. The three partnerships consist of Team Australia, Team USA and Team Canada. It is a landmark year for the “Great White North” — this is the first time any Canadian has competed at the Road to the Horse International. Two renowned trainers and clinicians — Jonathan Field and Glenn Stewart — will represent Canada at the competition. Both are based in British Columbia and have had extensive careers, in Canada and abroad, teaching clinics and starting colts. Both have built their programs around
Baldonnel, BC, trainer and clinician, Glenn Stewart, has been chosen to represent Canada at the 2012 Road to the Horse Competition in Murfreesboro, TN.
the principles of natural horsemanship. “My goal is to instil confidence, respect and understanding between horse and human,” explains Stewart, who counts his mentor, Pat Parelli, as a major influence in his career. Field was born into a horse loving family and grew his business out of a desire to achieve a better connection with his horses. Both trainers were surprised but excited to get the call to compete at the Road to the Horse International. “I was in Fort Saskatchewan when I got the call,” Field says. “When I was asked if I would represent Canada at this competition, of course I said, ‘Yes!’ It is such an honour to be able to represent your country.” For Stewart, the competition presents such a tremendous learning opportunity that he could not turn down the offer. “It will probably be one of the biggest learning curves of my life,” he says. “An opportunity like this doesn’t come up everyday either — the competition is out of
photo credit to robin duncan
Jonathan Field, based in Abbotsford, BC, decided to pursue a career using the principles of natural horsemanship after a lifechanging drilling accident.
my comfort zone but that is where you find the pressure to do better and learn more.” The competition opens with the colt selection process — one of the most important decisions the clinicians will have to make. Out of 10 geldings, provided by the historic Four Sixes Ranch of Texas, each competitor will get to see the horses move freely in a herd and may consult his partner in the selection process. Once the horse has been selected only that clinician may touch his horse. His partner can offer guidance and advice throughout the competition but is banned from making physical contact with his partner’s mount. Two round pen sessions follow for each clinician and the competition culminates in a mounted obstacle course that competitors must complete with their colt. Each section is scored by the judges to determine the winning team. Of course at the end there is also a “twist” — a
challenge unknown to any of the competitors that they may chose to accept for bonus points. So what will Team Canada be looking for in the colt selection? “I’ve been pondering this and there are just so many ways to approach it,” laughs Stewart. “I think I will try to pick (a horse) that stays in the middle of the herd, but also looks like he has confidence. Bravery is a good quality in a horse — if you can get it to work for you. I want to pick a horse that I would want to ride, however I have to keep the fact that I have only four hours to start him and complete an obstacle course in the back of my mind.” With regard to the colt selection process, there is one other concern for Stewart: “I have to admit that I’m a fool for pretty,” he adds with a chuckle. The round pen sessions are where the real work begins, and where clinicians lay the groundwork in anticipation of riding their colt over strange obstacles after just a few hours of training time. Although every horse and situation is different, in an ideal world, Field would like to have a few things accomplished at the end of the first session. “I would like to have the horse leading nicely, yielding each body part to pressure, probably have the saddle on and off. If things are going really well I would hope to have the girth tightened and the horse cantering around saddled. My goal is for the horse to leave the first session still feeling confident about what happened in there.” Preparation for the Road to the Horse started early for both Stewart and Field. The time limit placed on the training process at
the competition will present the biggest challenge for both — a very different reality than training at home. “This summer we did a ride out into the mountains where there are some wild horses and I usually do a few colt starting demonstrations,” explains Stewart. “In preparation for the competition I chose the wildest broodmares I could find and decided to start them keeping the time limit in mind — I called it the ‘Road to the Horse Special,’” Stewart laughs. Both trainers agree on what will likely be the hardest aspect of the competition. “For me it will be letting go of the fact that there are 8,000 people and media there watching you,” says Field. “You have to stay present and focused on your horse.” Stewart added that “you have to be paying complete attention to your horse and not get sidetracked. Also, you have to be planning ahead always, thinking about what you have to accomplish mounted on this horse on the final day.” The Road to the Horse International runs March 9-11, 2012 in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Past winners include such elite trainers as Josh Lyons, Clinton Anderson and Stacy Westfall. One competitor from Team USA is none other than Pat Parelli, mentor to both Field and Stewart. So how do they feel about competing against someone who guided their learning through the years? “It will be so great to compete against all those guys of that calibre,” says Stewart. “It’s exciting,” adds Field. “I will actually just be so honoured to be there and I look up to Pat so much. This is an event and an opportunity I’ll remember for the rest of my life.” t
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
Mounted Unit is fine example of positive policing in community Our way of life Making a living with horses By Heather Grovet
atrolling streets and pathways, watching for shoplifters, arresting intoxicated people, making routine checks; these are just some of the duties the Calgary Police Service’s Mounted Unit performs. Sergeant Derrick McGougan has ridden with the unit for 16 years and explains that mounted officers do the same work as regular police officers, except they operate from horseback. “We’ll ride wherever we’re needed, in residential areas, downtown or at malls,” he says. “And we also assist in search operations in parks.” The city of Calgary has used horses for patrol since the turn of the century, but this specific unit was formed in 1978. Currently it is composed of four officers and seven horses. “We use horses in a variety of breeds and ages,” McGougan says. “At this point in time four of our mounts are Canadian Horses. We like their temperament; they tend to be laid back and tolerant. And we appreciate their size. Many of our officers are large men, and our equipment is very heavy, so we need a heavier built horse with good bone. Our horses may carry up to 300 lbs of weight for six hours a day on various footing, including pavement,” he explains. “Also, we like that Canadians have a similar appearance, and we’re able to avoid white hairs, which are a problem on our dark clothes.” Two of the horses started their careers this fall, and another will be retiring in 2012. Most horses serve for a maximum of eight years, often retiring to a quieter life at their riders’ homes. McGougan says that officers must spend four years in district patrol before applying to the unit. “Working on horseback brings a lot of responsibility,” he says. “Our members carry firearms and pepper spray like all officers do, but they
also have to handle a living, breathing equine during times of conflict.” McGougan says the public sometimes thinks police horses are different than normal horses, but he notes they aren’t machines, and have the same fears and reactions found in all equines. McGougan will talk about bombproofing at the Horse Breeders and Owners Conference in Red Deer this month but says there is no magic formula to training a police horse to do his job. “It takes a lot of schooling to teach our horses to handle crowds and stress,” he says. “Our two new Canadians just finished a big training day where they walked across tarps, pushed enormous balls and advanced into gunfire, sirens and people throwing balls.” The unit relies on its senior horses to help train the new mounts. “If you get into a crowd situation like a riot, you really need one strong horse,” McGougan says. “That horse will walk into the aggressive crowd, and the other horses won’t want to be left behind, so they’ll follow. And it’s really up to the rider to set the pace. Sometimes the rider has to say ‘I know you don’t want to do this, but we’re going anyhow!’ If the horse doesn’t get hurt, he’ll improve the next time something similar occurs.” On a typical day horses are tacked up by 8:30 a.m., and return home by 4:30 p.m. In the summer months horses are on the street four days a week, with 90 per cent of their work being done at a walk. Loading and unloading into their trailer is a regular part of their workday, allowing the horses to be hauled to various locations. The unit trains in English tack, but once working uses western equipment, which gives added stability and the ability to attach the horn bags and saddle bags required for search operations. Horses live in outdoor turnout on their riders’ property, where they are exposed to everyday sights such as lawnmowers and kids biking. Most of the year they are shod with borium shoes to help grip the pavement, and each horse has an annual visit to the vet where they receive inoculations, deworm-
Constable Campbell of the Calgary Police Service’s Mounted Unit is aboard Police Service Horse (PSH), Stryder 2, with PSH Buddy packing.
ing and dental work. “Once we had a vet that wanted to twist one of our horse’s ears to give him an inter-nasal spray,” McGougan says. “I absolutely refused. We have hundreds of people pet our horses and hang all over them. We can’t afford to have our horses afraid of people’s hands, or someone could get hurt.” Constable Ross Thomson has been with the unit for three years, and works with two Canadian horses, Kelsey and Spirit. Thomson grew up riding horses in Alberta, but admits that when he first joined the unit he found six hours in the saddle painful. “The bigger and wider Canadians were hard on my knees and hips,” Thomson
long time assisting at a collision downtown, and by the time we were finished Kelsey was fidgeting and pawing the pavement.” “Working on the mounted unit is a very positive job,” Thomson laughs. “The community loves our horses. Every day people take our picture, wave and honk, or follow us around. The mounted unit is good for public relations, and it’s also good for the people we deal with. Recently I had a difficult call that ended positively, and most of that was because I was on horseback. The person I was dealing with was distracted by my horse, and that helped open the door for communication. It’s amazing what a difference these horses make.” t
says. “It took five months before I finally toughed up.” Thomson describes his horses as being very different in personality, and he uses their strengths to his advantage. “Kelsey is a real-go getter, curious, and walks with a good pace,” Thomson says. “Spirit is way more laid back, and willing to stand for long periods of time. Today I was doing Christmas mall parking lot patrols, and I used Kelsey, who really covers ground. But tomorrow I have a school event, where my horse and I will visit with the classes in the school yard. I’ll take Spirit there because he’ll happily stand around for a couple of hours. Not Kelsey; he hates waiting. Last week we had to stand for a
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Chinooks demand direct, hands-on horse care Horse and home Ranch / acreage living
By Cindy Bablitz
n the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, chinooks are a fact of climate and life. These warm winds, originating as moist, cool Pacific coast winds are blamed and blessed for the havoc and heaven they bestow upon southern Alberta. Anecdotes and opinions on how chinooks affect both man and beast are rampant, and many insist the resulting rapid fluctuation in temperature is a bane as much as a gift of southern Alberta winters. Some wonder how chinooks affect their horses, and whether particular care requirements could better support their equine populations in dealing with these seasonal winds. “Generally speaking, horses are quite well adapted for the large temperature swings that can occur in chinooks,” explains Dr. Greg Andrews, equine practitioner at Moore Equine Veterinary Centre in Calgary. “The three areas that could be affected by temperature swings are the animal getting too cold or too warm, sudden changes in eating and drinking patterns — and these things may result in a potential increase in colic and gastrointestinal upset.” Indeed, the temperature swings associated with chinook winds can be drastic. On January 11, 1983, the temperature in Calgary rose 30 C in four hours, from -17 C to 13 C. On a similar day in February 1964, the temperature rose 28 C while the humidity dropped by 43 per cent. These drastic and often rapid swings in temperature may affect appetite, thirst and comfort level. However, some people insist chinooks also produce a psy-
The unmistakeable “chinook arch.” The warm winds that blow during a chinook are responsible for rapid, and sometimes drastic, fluctuations in temperature.
chological effect, and that’s where Dr. Andrews cautions prudence. Science simply doesn’t support the theory. “The two studies we could find hypothesizing a correlation between weather and colic found no verifiable correlation,” says Dr. Andrews. “What is very clear and very well defined is the fact that changes in feed and feed intake are definitely direct corollaries to colic, and these factors may change with horses going in and out of warm to cold or cold to warm temperatures,” he explains. “They may eat less or more, for various reasons indirectly related to chinooks, and any time horses change their eating patterns, colic can definitely result.” So the advice is: stick to science, not anecdote or perception or myth. “As Dr. Scott, one of our surgeons, aptly pointed out: it might be that we are more likely to remember the animals who come in with colic or behavioural upset during a chinook versus the ones that come in otherwise. It certainly is our perception that that is the case.”
Nevertheless, there are things you can do to care for your horses and support their health, particularly when chinooks roll in. “Often times during a real cold snap in Calgary, when temperatures go quite low, people are required to turn up their outdoor water heating mechanisms to keep drinking water for their horses from freezing. Then, a chinook comes in, and suddenly the water can get too hot to drink. Even in very good management situations, people see open water in the trough for their horses and don’t necessarily think to stick their finger in. And, if horses don’t drink, they could get colic for sure,” explains Dr. Andrews. “Another common problem is too many blankets. When a chinook comes in, if the blankets aren’t removed, the horse can sweat under the blanket and then, when it gets cold again they can get quite chilled. Especially in a horse that’s very young or very old, or somehow medically challenged, a seemingly simple thing like catching a chill can become a significant health event.” What is undeniable, for humans
and animals, is that a shift from bitter cold to the warm gushes of spring-like chinook winds induces a shift from winter’s hibernating lethargy. A gusty chinook and the resulting warm temperatures provide a respite from winter’s stillness, and we want to play. “When it’s cold outside, horses do little more than stand around and eat and drink. When it warms up, they want to move around more, they exercise more, and this helps their gastrointestinal movement. When it’s warmer outside, they do not have to burn as much energy just keeping their own body warm, which means they do not require as much high-energy rations,” Dr. Andrews says. However, the best rule of thumb in feeding strategy for horses is gradual changes and chinooks notoriously are not gradual in nature. They come on strong and fast and can leave just as immediately. Far more than the human digestive tract — which can much easier tolerate drastic, sporadic or rapid nutrition changes — the equestrian gastrointestinal tract is an extremely sensitive environment,
relying on very specific interactions with different bacteria and other organisms to break down feed material. This delicate balance is easily upset with any change in feed materials, quantity or timing, causing gas and, therefore, colic, in many different forms. So once again the question of managing the care of horses where chinooks occur is about very direct, hands-on supervision, closely reacting to what is happening with the temperature outside. “Pay attention to your horse’s activity level, and the amount he’s drinking and eating as much as possible,” warns Dr. Andrews. “Another point I always drill: don’t just look at your horse. Feel your horse. Especially during the winter with their two inches of nice fluffy fur, they might look as healthy as can be. Then, in the spring when they lose their winter coat, they can look like a skinny rack of bones.” The best medicine is prevention, and in southern Alberta where the warm chinook winds blow, we simply need to take extra care. t
Double award wins for Olympic champion By Wendy Dudley
photo by wendy dudley
After heartbreak in losing his stallion Hickstead, Canada’s Eric Lamaze is smiling again, after winning the Rider of the Year Award, and CBC’s Athlete of the Year Award. Lamaze has been ranked the No. 1 rider in the world since June.
n a year of triumph followed by heartbreak, Canada’s Eric Lamaze has a reason to smile again. Just a month after losing his legendary stallion Hickstead to an acute ruptured aorta, the reigning Olympic gold show jumper was named both Rider of the Year and Athlete of the Year. In an emotional ceremony held in Geneva, Switzerland, following a show jumping tournament, Lamaze was awarded the Rider of the Year award, determined by the International Jumping Riders Club. It was the second year in a row he won the event. Lamaze finished 2011 as the world’s No. 1 ranked rider, a position he has held since June. “It is an honour to receive this award, which is extremely important to me because it is voted on by the riders,” said Lamaze. Swiss jumper Steve Guerdat, a friend of Lamaze’s, addressed the crowd, stating that rather than feel sad, fans should be celebra-
tory and that Hickstead would have wanted to hear their excitement. “The crowd stood up and gave a standing ovation. It was very special,” said an emotional Lamaze. “(Steve) always loved Hickstead.” The CBC Athlete of the Year Award was a people’s choice honour, with the public voting for 12 Canadian athlete nominees. Lamaze and Hickstead earned 56.9 per cent of the vote, a landslide victory. Second place went to world figure skating champion Patrick Chan with 11.6 per cent of the vote. “Together they were the best in the world and, for many Canadians, restored a sense of wonder to sport in 2011,” said CBC commentator Scott Russell, speaking of the dynamic combination of Hickstead and Lamaze. “Equestrian is not mainstream like baseball, hockey or basketball, so it is an honour for our sport to have a show jumping athlete win,” Lamaze said. “People have been more than kind. I am still receiving emails and good wishes. Everywhere I
have showed — Toronto, Paris and now Geneva — the crowds have been crazy. It is hard to put into words how it feels to have so much support from the fans.” Lamaze will now move from competition in Europe to three months of jumping, from January to March, at the Winter Equestrian Festival in Wellington, Florida. Competition begins January 12. His current top mount is Coriana van Klapscheut, a nineyear-old Belgium Warmblood mare that carried him to a second place finish in December in the Paris Gucci Masters, part of the Rolex Top 10 Final. He also recently acquired the ride on Hunter’s Scendix, an eight-yearold stallion that he will compete on at high level competition throughout 2012. The striking black Hannoverian, already with a string of championships, won the FEI Zangersheide Sires of the World competition in September. Lamaze will begin competing on the horse at Wellington. t
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
Clients refer to stone, wood and steel artisan as ‘Renaissance Man’ Inspirations Artist profile By Cindy Bablitz
search for some masculine, historical decor to go with his new nuptial home triggered a bit of artistic inspiration for James Greisinger. “I was going from garage to estate sale trying to find a big trophy mounted moose head. I wanted the juxtaposition of my new dining room set with something vintage and masculine. My wife didn’t want anything dead in the house,” says James Greisinger, who humbly calls himself, simply, proprietor of Stone, Wood and Steel. In fact, James, (who also goes by his German nickname Yahmis) is a carpenter, a blacksmith and an artist … with a bit of interior designer, public relations practitioner and home-building contractor thrown in. “I don’t consider myself a master blacksmith. I guess I’m a hybrid. Not a fabricator, not really a full-time artist, but not a full-time carpenter either. I’ve had clients call me a Renaissance Man.” A true innovator, James’ dilemma of decor versus decorum led him to create what has become a whole new artistic line of stylized metal trophy heads — including deer, moose, bison, bighorn sheep, and caribou — hammered out at the forge instead of gunned down in the woods. “Customers have enjoyed the pieces … that they can physically feel how much time has gone into this wall sculpture. Every inch has been hit by a hammer, tooled, tonged.” James’ trophy head collection has been showing at the Blue Rock Gallery in Black Diamond to rave reviews and hot demand. “One customer said he loved my art because he wanted a trophy head but didn’t want the blood on his hands. From that, the ‘no guts no glory’ turned into my tagline, ‘all glory, no guts,’” chuckles James. His art ethics were always tinged with discernment for the practical. As a child, his best friend’s dad was a farrier, so an appreciation of the metal arts was instilled early. As an adult, James spent years as a carpenter while he went to university, figuring out who he wanted to be, and what he wanted to do. “One day, I got a request to build a steel and maple shelf. One thing led to another, and before I knew it, I got a request from Emerald Lake Lodge, brand new at the time, to build a hundred end tables, a hundred lamps and a hundred candle holders. My hobby for artistic, functional pieces suddenly went from a hobby to a full-time gig.” In a functional fusion of beautiful carpentry and artistic blacksmithing, (his trophy heads, all individually named, are each beautifully mounted on hand selected native woods, hemlock, spruce and cedar) James expresses his European roots.
The bison trophy head is forged and shaped over an anvil out of mild steel with a wax clear coat and mounted on a solid sandblasted cedar plank.
photos courtesy stone, wood, steel
James Greisinger, uses his many skills as carpenter, blacksmith, public relations practitioner and home-building contractor, to influence his art.
“I had it instilled in me early: do it right the first time. Take pride in your finished product. I’ve seen a disconnect in people … with everything being shipped in from somewhere else, many people have lost a passion for handcrafted work,” James says. “I’m lucky to work with builders and for clients who appreciate quality.” Quality takes time and for the artist, there’s nothing more rewarding than finding the client who is willing to wait and pay for the time it takes to produce a product that survives longer than next year’s fashion trend. “For an artist, it’s not really about the paycheque. It’s about the appreciation,” says James. And then, after a pause, says grinning, “The accountant doesn’t like that.”
Still, he admits, “It can get frustrating … after 14 years I’m still arm wrestling with the clients who will spend more on a pimped-out BMW in the driveway than on an ornate hand-forged railing that will be standing in hundreds of years.” No matter. Happily, respect for craftsmanship is not all lost, and it’s to this end that James continues refining his craft. “Even on my honeymoon two years ago I took a blacksmithing class,” he says. “At the end of the day, blacksmithing is nothing more than steel, fire, an anvil, hammer and a swinging arm … but the way artists from all over the world approach it is what makes it so interesting. I don’t think you become a true master of blacksmithing until you’ve trav-
Greisinger works with builders to create custom railings.
elled the world, taking classes in all the different techniques.” Perhaps, it’s artists like James who keep the integrity of artisan work alive, for others to encounter and appreciate. “Basically I’m self taught. I’ve taken a half dozen classes all over the world, and I love coming home and incorporating the different styles
from different masters into my own work. “You do come across the people who want the adventure, who want the story that goes with a handcrafted piece. We need to support these artists.” To view more of James’ work, and to contact him, visit www. stonewoodandsteel.ca. t
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4504 - 42 Street • Innisfail, Alberta T4G 1P6 This unique door is made from Canadian hemlock. It’s hand scraped, with forged and textured mild steel custom hinges and features a rust patina clear coat, leaded glass and individually made square-headed lag bolts.
JANUARY 2012 | www.horsesall.com
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New transportation rules for horses Eye on the industry News from Alberta’a equine community
Submitted by Robyn Moore U.S. horse processing news Legislation has changed in the United States to allow for horse processing in states that do not have laws prohibiting it (Texas, California, Illinois and
Oklahoma). Horse processing has not occurred in the U.S. since 2007, when funding for USDA inspection was denied and a federal court judge ruled against inspections on a fee-per-service arrangement. On November 17, 2011, congress passed H.R. 2112 and the bill became law on November 18, when President Obama signed it. The law allows funding for USDA inspection of horse meat, but it is not known when processing of horses will actually begin in the U.S.
New border points of entry for feeder or
slaughter horses The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is implementing new measures to verify that horses are being humanely transported in accordance with the Health of Animals regulations. Effective January 1, 2012, all shipments of feeder and slaughter horses entering Canada from the United States by ground transportation will be required to proceed through designated ports of entry. Shipments will only be accepted during the CFIA’s regular hours of operation. The designated ports of entry have appropriate unloading facilities for horses and are staffed by
CFIA veterinarians. As of January 1, 2012, shipments of feeder and slaughter horses will not be able to enter Canada at other border ports of entry. The new requirements apply only to feeder and slaughter horses. Imports of other types of horses (for example, riding or breeding horses) and other types of livestock are not affected by this change. Feeder horse shipments require customs clearance from the Canada Border Services Agency and may be referred to the CFIA for inspection. All shipments must be presented during CFIA regular hours of
operation in order to allow for inspection if required. Slaughter horse shipments require CFIA veterinary inspection at the border. Transporters must arrange an appointment for inspection a minimum of 24 hours before arriving at the port of entry. Visit the CFIA website at www. inspection.gc.ca for more information.
Upcoming events January 13, 2012: Stable Owners Seminar, Red Deer, AB January 13-15, 2012: Horse Breeders and Owners Conference, Red Deer, AB t
Get the right gear to work or ride in the cold Hands-on horsekeeping Horse care advice
By Heather Grovet
lberta winters, complete with snow, wind, freezing rain and icy temperatures can make being outdoors challenging for even the hardiest Canadian. So how do horsemen keep warm when riding or doing chores in prairie winters? Barry Lammle of Lammles Western Wear and Tack offers three suggestions for keeping warm during inclement weather: “First of all, to keep warm you must keep dry — all clothing should be water-proof but breathable,” he says. “Next, use layers. Many jackets have zip-outs that you can add and remove as necessary, and if it’s really cold you might want to use a vest underneath everything. Layers help hold in your body’s warmth, plus they allow you to easily remove clothing if you overheat when you get out of the cold and into your truck. And third, it’s essential to keep your feet, head and hands warm.” Lammles Western Wear sells a number of different winter boots, with one of its most popular brands being Muck Boots. These one-piece, 100 per cent waterproof boots come in mens and ladies sizes and in a variety of fashionable colours including black, blue, turquoise and pink. “There are different types of Muck Boots,” Barry explains. “Some are rated for -20 C weather, others are rated as cold as -40 C.” Muck Boots’ Brit Colt model is stirrup-friendly, and has toe protection. These might come in handy if your horse steps on your foot this winter! Leanne Irvine of Irvine Tack and Trailers agrees that dressing in layers is essential for winter horsemen. “We carry a lot of Carhartt outerwear,” she says. “You can buy Carhartt vests, jackets and bib overalls, which are perfect for chores or riding.” Carhartt outerwear is made of heavy duty duck cotton, which is difficult to damage. Arctic-style Carhartt clothing is rated for -40 to -50 C temperatures, making them popular with ranchers and guys that work on the rigs. “What many
people don’t realize is that Carhartt is now fashionable — we sell a whole line of ladies outerwear in pinks, purples, blues and browns, in sizes ranging from 0 to 20.” Leanne notes that many people ride indoors in the winter, requiring different types of clothing. Because they are inside, out of the wind and snow, these riders often dress in hoodies and vests, being careful to avoid any clothing that could catch on the horn, especially if they’re involved in roping. “But most indoor riders still appreciate insulated boots,” Irvine says. “We carry Boulet boots, which are Canadian made and stirrupfriendly. We have a lace-up model and a pull-on boot which look very similar to regular cowboy boots but are lined and warm. The lace-up model is rated for -40 C weather, so it’s perfect for ranch riding or working in the feedlot.” Trevor Jones of Jones Boys Saddlery and Western Wear says his store also sells a lot of Carhartt products for men, women and youth, especially at the Ponoka location, which caters to farmers and ranchers. “Carhartt outerwear is really durable,” he says. “The material is wind and snag resistant, so bumping against a barbwire fence probably won’t ruin the clothing. And many people ride in Carhartt insulated pants. Nylon ski pants can be dangerous in the saddle because they’re so slippery; in Carhartts you’re much more secure.” Trevor explains that Carhartt also makes a variety of hoodies, shirts, pants, scarves and toques as well as its popular outerwear. “Carhartt also produces an excellent set of long underwear in both tops and bottoms,” he says. “Its ‘work-dry base layer’ underwear is light-weight, functional and very comfortable. It keeps you warm, manages moisture, and — believe it or not — also resists odours so you don’t stink after wearing it all day!” Jones Boys Saddlery also sells a number of winter gloves, many lined with thinsulate. “We have gloves that are rated to -20 C,” Trevor says. “But remember, my hands may feel very different in a pair of gloves compared to yours, so it’s important you experiment to see which types suit you best.” Once it gets extremely cold, horsemen may need mitts instead of
Keeping warm and dry are key to being comfortable working around the ranch in winter. Muck Boots are just one of several boot manufacturers that offer styles specifically made to withstand Alberta winters.
gloves. One of the warmest types of mitts is the gauntlet mitt, which has a long cuff to keep out wind and snow. Motorcycle riders use gauntlet mitts because they are so wind resistant. While these would be comfortable for chores, they likely wouldn’t work well for holding reins while riding.
As a quick after-thought Lammle reminds equestrians that their horses also suffer in extreme cold and wind. “If your horse doesn’t have shelter, then he needs a wind-proof, water-proof blanket,” Barry says. “You can actually dress your horse cheaper than you can dress yourself —
many of our winter blankets start at $100, and can be found in every imaginable colour including zebra, turtle and cheetah patterns. I would recommend you buy blankets with at least 300 to 400 grams of fibrefill, and in at least 1,200 denier for turnout.” t
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
Gaylene Buff revels in unexpected ‘Cowgirl of the Year’ win at CFR Women of the west Personal profile By Dianne Finstad
aintaining a successful career in the highly competitive world of Canadian professional barrel racing takes the management skills of a corporate executive. Not only do these women have to be welltuned horse trainers and riders, with the drive of a professional athlete, but they also have to oversee “home” operations, while executing a travel schedule of 20 or more rodeos across western Canada. Gaylene Buff does all that, and then some. She truly is a woman of the west, as she rodeos from her home base in Westwold, B.C. That means she has to journey across the Rockies for all but a handful of her events. She just wrapped up a very successful season on the circuit, finishing third in Canadian barrel racing standings. But Buff is also a dedicated mom and wife, and does the books for the family’s logging company. And because she does all that with a smile and determination, her fellow racers presented her with the prestigious Cowgirl of the Year award in Edmonton this November. Buff made a name for herself in 2008, when she burst onto the pro-rodeo scene and claimed Rookie of the Year honours, with her bay gelding Vador. He was a horse that had been described by many as “more than a handful”, but Buff spotted a winner in him that others couldn’t see. She brought him along and took him all the way to a Canadian championship in 2009. The 2010 season was more of a struggle and Buff learned firsthand what barrel racers often say — it takes more than one strong horse to keep you on the road to championships. In 2011, she proved that adage true, and with the assistance of her now seasoned other mount, Duke, she’s ready to tackle the world in 2012. But it took some perseverance to get to that point. “In 2010, I knew Vador wasn’t quite right. I knew it in my gut,” recalls Buff. “Everyone said it was just the pressure of my 2009 win. Vets couldn’t find anything for so long that I began to think ‘maybe I’m crazy, maybe it is me.’” But Buff stuck to her instincts, and eventually took Vador to Washington for an MRI, where bone chips in the hind fetlock were finally discovered. Surgery came next. “When they got in, they found two of the chips were hindering the movement of the ligament on the outside of the fetlock. So they cleaned that up, and an old shoulder injury. He was on six weeks stall rest, then I had to hand walk him for a month.” While Vador was recovering, it
Gaylene Buff in action at the 2011 CFR in Edmonton.
was Duke’s turn to step up. In the past, when her number one gunner was so healthy, Buff’s backup man didn’t get the call as much. But Duke delivered in 2011. Vador, now 13, was chomping at the bit to go again later in the spring, and having both horses at the top of their game gave Buff options and choices to manage her rodeo schedule. “I use Vador in the hard pens. He’s faster and his barrels aren’t as ‘pretty,’ while Duke is more ‘turny.’ If one or the other needed rest, I could switch them off,” explains Buff. “It takes a while to adjust to their different styles, which is why I didn’t want to get off Vador in the past.” Last year, Buff travelled hard, competing in 36 Canadian rodeos. Of all the 2011 CFR barrel racing qualifiers, only Debbie Renger went to more rodeos than her. In the end it was Buff’s success farthest from home that paid off. For the second time in her pro career, she became the Prairie Circuit champion. It was at the CPRA award presentations during CFR week when she went to claim that award, that she was surprised with the Cowgirl of the Year award. “My mouth dropped open when I heard them talking about someone from Westwold,” laughs Buff. “I’m the only cowgirl from there! I was pretty honoured to receive it, because it’s not only for your success, but also for how you are outside the arena. It says something about your character. “I never even thought about winning that award, even in my wildest dreams. It’s very humbling. It was pretty special too, because my mother and two sisters had flown in from Utah to watch me compete this year,” she says. “I hope I set a good image for young people. You never know who’s watching.” Although it’s not easy, Buff strives to keep a balance in her life, and family remains a top priority, as well as her family’s business. Buff is the office manager for her husband Erik’s family logging company. And their two children Peter and Gloria also keep her busy. “They have hockey and dance, and Gloria
JANUARY 2012 | www.horsesall.com
jumps in with me on the road some.” In addition to that, Buff also helps other young people develop their riding talents when she does get to spend some time at home. “Every time I give lessons, whether they’re my daughter’s age or teens, I tell them you’ve got to believe when you enter the arena. I learn from watching them. Often they’re so busy worrying about what can go wrong, that they make it go wrong.” Instead of finding things to worry about, Buff encourages her protégés to power through the challenges. Another important philosophy she applies to her own experience is if you don’t like a situation, do something to change it. “Sometimes you don’t even know what the right direction is,
but if you keep doing the same thing, you’ll get the same reaction. So you’ve got to change something up.” Buff put a $46,000 cap on her year with her earnings at the CFR in Edmonton. Now with Duke in competition form as well, Buff is considering travelling to some more U.S. rodeos this season, perhaps even chasing an NFR berth. She knows having two great running horses at once doesn’t happen often, and such opportunities need to be seized. “Life is like a chess game, and just as you try to better yourself at the game, it’s the same with life. Every day you have to trust in yourself and believe that you can do anything you set your mind to. Never doubt what you’re capable of doing.”
Gaylene Buff was named 2011 Cowgirl of the Year at the Canadian Finals Rodeo in Edmonton last fall.
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Pet, partner, couch potato or athlete: what is your horse? Get a grip Ask the trainers By Glenn Stewart
et me explain. Sometimes I use the diagram below at clinics I host. A “reactive” horse is one that is scared and worried about its surroundings or people or one person in particular. Reactive horses are not confident about our requests or the way we ask. Their movements are usually quick and they do more or go faster than asked. A “responsive” horse is one that responds to our requests — not more or less than we’ve asked. A “non-responsive” horse is one that doesn’t respond or react and is very dull and unmotivated. When you would like to do something he’s busy eating grass or smelling poop. A “pet” horse is like the dog that blocks the door when you try to come or go. When you call him it appears like he didn’t hear, so you yell louder but he still keeps chasing the horses or barking all night. He might come if there is the promise of food but not if he has eaten recently. A “partner” horse is like the dog that tears off the deck after some deer in the yard and when you call “quietly”, he slides to a stop and comes running back. He lays patiently in the corral waiting for you to finish your ride. When you call his name “quietly”, and point to the outside of the corral, he’ll jump up, wag his tail and lay down right where you pointed. An “athlete” is the horse that has lots of life and stamina, is fit, and enjoys moving. A “couch potato” horse is unfit, probably overweight, and if he was asked to move fast he might just pull a muscle. Now for interest sake, choose the two you think would be the least desirable qualities to have in a horse. Then, pick any of the two qualities that you would most desire. Finally, pick the two that best describe what you have with your horse now. Once you have picked the combination that best suits your situation, circle whether your horse is non-responsive, responsive, or reactive. The combination of qualities I would least want in a horse are “pet” and “athlete.” The reason is, I would be riding a horse that wants to move his feet and I would have no say in where he’s going. He does what he wants, when he wants, and I would be like a frog on a rocket. At least with a “couch potato/ pet” we would be going slowly where they wanted to go or just standing still. The two qualities I would most desire are “athlete” and “partner.” (Photo 1) Now, I can do and go where I want as fast or slow as I want and I’m on a
photo 1 photo 3
Couch Potato Non-responsive
horse that is able and willing to do it — which in short, would also be a responsive horse. Some people may only want a “couch potato/partner” so the horse does what’s asked, just slowly with no chance of mixups or unintentional speed or quickness. The good and bad news is a person can take any horse and turn him into a couch potato, pet, partner, responsive, reactive or non-responsive horse. All horses are born fairly athletic, some much more than others, but kept fit and healthy, most are capable of more than enough for most situations. (Photo 2). When you play with your horse what are you trying to create? What are you working towards? The horse or horses we have at the moment do not need to stay the way they are unless we like the behaviours they have. They can always become more and improve with the right kind of help. (Photo 3). There are three things we can look at and question how these behaviours or traits in ourselves might effect what kind of horse we create. Draw three lines on
a paper, parallel to each other and equally spaced and call the first line “passive,” the middle line “assertive” and the last line “aggressive.” Somewhere on this graph our personality fits. What experience has shown to date is that the closer I can stay to assertive with my horses, the better our relationship is, and the closer to having a partner I will get. The more passive we are towards our horses the more they act like pets and sooner or later become non-responsive for us, do what they want, when and how they want, depending on whether they are athletes or couch potatoes. If from the horse’s perspective we are aggressive, meaning that we get mean or mad then we will get nervous horses. They won’t be a partner because they are too busy worrying about their self-preservation, which causes brace and reactiveness. When phases are not used, coupled with a poor attitude and pressure that is higher than required or longer than necessary, that would be considered aggressive by the horse. There is some confusion about what assertive might look like.
Being assertive means having an attitude of fairness, with no room for anger or being a doormat. Sometimes being assertive means we may have to bring our life or energy up, a lot, to match that of the horse’s. Some people are uncomfortable bringing up their life, and if they do, their emotions come up as well. The emotions need to be left out of it. Separate life or energy from emotions, as they are two different things. We have to lead and not give the role of leadership to the horse. We need to make the decisions and the horse will gain great respect and confidence from your leadership. It removes confusion and arguments between the human and horse. Having said all this, being assertive is great but we can never forget about the amount of feel, timing and understanding we have, which plays equally as much to the outcome we have with our horses. (Photo 4). If our feel, timing or understanding in any given situation is off, our horse very easily could perceive us as something other than what we wanted. Focus and the ability to stick to the job at hand cannot be over looked as well. If we didn’t have the focus to stick with it until there was improvement in some small way the horse does not understand what it was all about or that we were even looking for a change. Then the next time out, the horse thinks: “Here we go again, we are going
to do stuff and finally they will put me away.” Horses zone out and wait for their shift to be over, instead of trying to figure out what it is you are looking for. A person can teach their horse to be present and learning or just enduring another session or ride. Horses can only be as good as the handler. Frustration when working with a horse on occasion is inevitable, but we can work on ourselves and keep the frustrating sessions fewer and farther between. How we handle the frustration is what is the most important. Keep it fun, and after each session ask yourself from the horse’s perspective, “How did I do?” Have fun, and enjoy the time you spend with horses. For more in-depth perspective on the concepts contained in this article, you can view a special video-clip enhanced version at http://www.thehorseranch.com/articles/ Glenn Stewart travels extensively conducting clinics, demonstrations, and colt starting sessions, and also offers camps and a threemonth horsemanship course at his home, The Horse Ranch, in Baldonnel, BC. Glenn is the 2010 Calgary Stampede Cowboy Up Challenge champion and has been chosen as one of the Canadian representatives in the 2012 Road to the Horse, the World Championship of Colt Starting in Murfreesboro, TN. For more information call 1-877-728-8987 or visit www.thehorseranch.com
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
Debrief to sharpen 2012 goals The thinking rider Horse sport psychology
By April Clay, Psychologist
our year is over. Maybe it all went according to plan and you’re all set just to bask in victory’s glow. Or perhaps there were a few undesirable moments you would rather forget. Either way, you may want to take some time to reflect on the year’s events as a means to sharpening your 2012 targets and motivating yourself to get moving.
Get the information There are good questions and there are those you might want to avoid. Among the latter are questions like, “How could I have been so stupid/ blind/idiotic.” (Fill in the put-down of your choice). Remember that put-downs only serve to demoralize and de-motivate — they are not problem solvers so keep them out of your debriefing. Instead, make it your prac-
tice to stick to questions that will bring you interesting and useful information. Feel free to create your own, but I have included a list to get you started. Now would be a great time for you to go out and purchase a sport journal. Get whatever works for you in terms of size and style, the important thing is to make it attractive to you so you won’t forget to visit it often. When you have finished designing your debriefing questions, you can make your answers the start of your new journal. Write without excessive thinking or concern for grammar. Just get it out — all your thoughts, feelings and observations on the past year.
Sample debriefing questions: • W hat were the high points and low points of your year? (Every year will have both, so make sure you fairly review your competitive and training season.) • W h o e n c o u r a g e d y o u r goals? (Who were the people in your life that really supported you? You might want to acknowledge and thank them; they’ll be more likely to continue to support you!) • D id you accomplish your goals? Did your horse
• What events do you really just need to let go of? (Garbage items are those that are not worthy of your time or energy.)
Now would be a great time for you to go out and purchase a sport journal. Get whatever works for you in terms of size and style, the important thing is to make it
Interpret the information, and get moving!
attractive to you so you won’t forget to visit it often.
accomplish the goals you set for him/her? (You may want to enlist the assistance of your coach here — how do both of you rate both sides of your team?) • What did you find most challenging? (What took the most energy for you this year? Maybe you need to congratulate yourself for hanging in through a tough time or change something about your goals to make them more reasonable.) • Were you well prepared? What else could you have done? (Did you develop and follow a plan, or did you leave outcomes to chance?) • How would you rate the unity in your team? (Your team may include parents, coaches, friends etc.) • W hat do you hope to accomplish in the next year? (Start with a dream, then settle in on a reason-
ably challenging target for 2012.) • What is your plan to get there? (What are your short term and daily goals?) • What changes do you want to make to your life? (Reflect here on what changes you may want to make outside the barn that will have an impact on your riding. For example, you may decide to be more accepting of yourself and your mistakes.) • Are there any relationships you need to change? (This may include relationships with coaches, barn mates or anyone else who has a substantial impact on your riding pleasure and performance.) • How will you change them? (Will you communicate differently? Be more assertive? Ask directly for what you need where you haven’t before?)
So how does this all stack up in terms of how you will evaluate yourself? Too often, athletes only evaluate themselves according to the win/ lose yardstick. It’s an easy trap to get into, as everyone wants to win and let’s face it, this is what competitions emphasize and celebrate. But before you begin counting ribbons, ask yourself: will this information really help you to become a better rider? If you celebrate the wins but don’t know why you may not take away the power to repeat what you did in the ring. If you bemoan your loss and beat yourself up you take bad feelings and no information with you the next time you step in the ring. So this year, resolve to understand and take forward your knowledge of the process of your previous year. Respect the complexity that is horse sport, and know that continued improvement in your sport is always possible. t
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Time to chill Book and movie reviews
Lameness Examining Equine Lameness from Diagnosis to Prognosis Terry Swanson, DVM with Heidi Nyland
Understanding Lameness Examining Equine Lameness from Diagnosis to Prognosis By Terry Swanson, DVM with Heidi Nyland A Western Horseman Publication Soft Cover, 2009, $21.95 ISBN: 978-0-911647-74-7 Available on Amazon
Reviewed by Carol M. Upton
e invest substantial time, love and money in our horses and often feel devastated when they turn up lame. Understanding Lameness is a well-organized and highly readable reference book on what is a challenging topic for many owners. Lameness at one time was basically “the end” for your horse; today there are advanced treatment methods that can have him up and working again long into his life span. The first chapter helps the rider recognize the many forms of lameness, including the early signs, such as subtle changes in behaviour and gait. The next four chapters deal with the foot, from hoof conformation to laminitis. We then work our way up the legs into knees, shoulders, muscles and back. Each section includes information on what might be happening, what you
Horse Sense for the Leader Within Expanded Edition - An Equine Guided Approach to Self Leadership by Ariana Strozzi Soft Cover, 2011, $25.00 ISBN: 9-781-453-859995 Available on Amazon
“The horse, being an energetic wizard, listens to our inner intentions and desires with a deep sense of awareness. When our desire is strong and clear, the horse follows our intention, as if no other leadership quality were needed.” —Ariana Strozzi
will notice and which medications and procedures your veterinarian may recommend. The final chapter details at-home therapies you can use to help your horse heal. The strength of this book lies in the way in which the authors take us into the veterinarian’s mind, explaining in plain language the process used to diagnose, treat and manage equine lameness. Every rider dreams of preventing lameness in the first place and will also find here excellent information on keeping horses sound, whether in the arena or on the trail. I cannot think of a more vital book for your barn bookshelf. Terry Swanson, DVM practices in the Littleton Equine Medical Center in Colorado, where he has made a significant impact diagnosing and treating equine lameness. When not writing or taking pictures, Heidi Nyland is often riding or teaching riding lessons.
“Use this book as a field guide to help you understand different degrees of lameness and the effects different injuries can have on your horse’s future health. Relax and take a breath.” —Terry Swanson, DVM
Reviewed by Carol M. Upton
s we head into a new year, what better time to read a motivational book by rancher and lifelong horsewoman Ariana Strozzi? Horse Sense for the Leader Within—Expanded Edition will start the reader off on the right foot with over 50 pages of new writings, stories and topics related to leadership and the horse as healer process. Strozzi’s principles are based on the ways in which we can step outside of our human confines and re-connect with the natural world. As most equestrians know, horses naturally guide us in this transition. Strozzi details her case studies with both individuals and corporations, where horses are introduced to help participants learn valuable lessons in trust, confidence, creative thinking and ultimately, better leadership. Strozzi notes an increasing need in our world for people to re-examine their values when it comes to health, relationships and career identity. Her belief is that animals, particularly horses, can help us refine these and other areas of our lives. This book is beautifully written and researched and is a perfect resource for people interested in encouraging the best from the horses and the people in their lives. Ariana Strozzi has been bringing the magic of Horse Sense to human development since 1989, coining the term Equine Guided Education in 1999. She has won championship awards in working cow horse, reining, and many other disciplines.
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
Remembering Ernie Henderson, a friend of the draft horse Homeward bound Celebrating lives lived By Wendy Dudley
hen I met with Ernie Henderson seven years ago, it wasn’t his years as a Mountie that consumed our conversation. It was his love of horses, especially for the working draft horses that helped farmers settle western Canada. “Wonderful animals,” he said, his big hands outlining the form of a Percheron or Clydesdale in a book of photographs. “I still miss them,” said the former show ring judge. Henderson, then 99 years old, was still accompanying people to barns and auctions to help them purchase a horse of sound structure and mind. He seemed ageless. He continued to recall his days of horse judging until his death in November. He was 106, Canada’s oldest surviving RCMP officer. Henderson was still driving a car at 100, but clearly stated he would have preferred to be behind a team of real horses instead of mechanical horsepower. “I could still drive a four-horse-hitch but I don’t think I’m strong enough for a six-horse,” he said at the time. Henderson was born in 1905, the same year Alberta became a province. He grew up in the era when work horses were king, enabling settlers to carve a living from the land. At age six, he was driving a team of four horses on the family farm in Manitoba. No big deal, he said. His father had prepared him well, giving him a pair of naughty Shetland ponies the year before. “They were a pair of little devils, so they taught me how to handle anything.” The farm had 15 work horses, and Henderson would be in the field with them by 7 a.m., toiling until supper time. A good team was a valuable asset, he said, with some farmers going into debt to purchase a solid team. In many cases, It would take them 10 years to pay it off. Henderson would have most likely stayed on the farm, he said, but the Depression forced him to look for proper pay after the farm had to be sold. He signed up with the RCMP in 1933. Even as a
Mountie, he was tracking down bad guys who still rode horses. He also became a member of the RCMP Musical Ride. He even appeared with his horse Pard in the movie Rose Marie, starring Nelson Eddie and Janette McDonald. Throughout the ‘40s, he worked at various posts in Alberta, including Edmonton, Hanna, Drumheller, Cardston, Turner Valley and then High River, where he eventually settled and lived until his death. After retiring from the RCMP, he became western Canada’s fieldman with the Canadian Shorthorn Association. A man with various hobbies (he grew award-winning dahlias and gladioli), he loved nothing better than to be around heavy horses. When Henderson married in Calgary, he left his new bride waiting in the hotel room while he slipped over to the stockyards to take in a Clydesdale show. He judged all breeds, but admitted a fondness for Clydesdales. “Nothing can beat a bonnie Clyde. They have such good feet and legs,” he said. There was also a family connection, as his grandfather was from Scotland, the native home of Clydes and Shorthorn cattle. “He was a Clyde man, but he liked them all — Shires, Percherons or Belgians,” recalled his friend Allan Gordeyko, who shows and breeds Clydes east of Camrose. “Even when he couldn’t get around very well anymore, we’d drive him around to look at the horses. He’d always pick one or two out, and say there was something really nice about those ones. He knew a good horse. And he had a great memory for remembering the breeding. He knew the stallions and mares they were from.” As a judge, he could be tough, said Barb Stephenson, secretary of the Wild Rose Draft Horse Association. “He’d always come to the Stampede. He was an awesome showman. He’d notice if the hair wasn’t all going in the same direction on a hock.” But he was always fair, noted Gordeyko. “He knew a good horse, no matter who was holding the lead shank, or who the breeder was. He judged shows across Canada. And he wasn’t afraid to come out with his comments.” Henderson hobnobbed with the late Grant MacEwan, Alberta’s Lieutenant-Governor (1966-74) and an author and historian who also judged draft breeds. Leafing through a history book of heavy
photo credit: wendy dudley
Ernie Henderson, at 99, browses through a book on Heavy Horses by author and horse judge Grant MacEwan whom he hobnobbed with during his own days as a show ring judge. Henderson recognized many of the horses in the book, as well as the breeders. Henderson continued to attend horse shows almost until his death in November, at age 106.
horses written by MacEwan, there were many references to and photographs of horses Henderson knew personally. “This one here,” he said, pointing to a specific photo. “I used to get up and roll his mane. When I was small, I’d stand on a nail keg so I could climb on his back.” He touched the muzzles and shoulders of many legendary Clydes, including Forest Favorite and Arnprior Emigrant, and was friends with landmark breeders Ben Finlayson and A.E. Arnold. Even after he retired from judging, he would make the trip to the Manitoba Clydesdale Classic, one of North America’s largest single breed horse shows. He would sit there, placing them in his mind. The horses were bigger than in his
Two years ago, Henderson donated his collection of Canadian Clydesdale Stud Books to the Stockmen’s Memorial Foundation Library in Cochrane. He lived a full life, but when asked if he had any regrets, he said: “Maybe one. That I’m not still farming.” In 2005, when he turned 100, he was parade marshal for the High River Little Britches Parade. But officials put him in a carriage. He felt he should have been on a horse, or at least behind a big team. He never stopped missing the feel of reins between his fingers. “I’d still have a team, if I was still farming,” he said. “I’d have a tractor for the summer, but definitely a team in winter. They’re great for getting the feed out to stock, and they can go places a car can’t.” t
farm days, he said. Without the gruelling field work, energy from food and today’s supplements make for a larger animal. Henderson witnessed first hand the decline in use of heavy horses, as tractors replaced them in the field. When he was born, there was close to two million work horses in Canada. Clydes dominated the draft horse world. “Everything was horses, horses, horses,” he said, recalling the University of Saskatchewan’s special Clydesdale breeding program, established in 1919. The animals were also study subjects and performed the campus field work. By the mid-40s, heavy horses had all but disappeared from farms, many slaughtered and sold as meat to post-war Europe.
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Ernie Henderson points to a photo of three winning Clydesdale mares at the 1947 Royal Winter Fair in Toronto. He knew the trio well, as a heavy horse judge at shows across Canada. Henderson, of High River, died in November at age 106.
JANUARY 2012 | www.horsesall.com
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Alberta Horse Breeders and Owners Conference ~ jan. 13-15, 2012
SPECIAL EVENT FEATURE
Annual horseman’s mid-winter escape
rom January 13-15, 2012, the annual Horse Breeders and Owners Conference — North America’s premiere equine conference — celebrates its 30th anniversary. The Horse Breeders and Owners Conference (HBOC) is presented by Horse Industry Association of Alberta.
WHO SHOULD ATTEND? “Everyone who is involved with horses in any discipline — from people who take lessons to trainers to stable owners to breeders to competitive or recreational riders, all of these groups of people will gain valuable information to apply to their particular relationship with horses,” says Robyn Moore, manager of the Horse Industry Association of Alberta. Session topics fall into three different categories: health and care of the horse, use and training of horses and the business of horses. “This year,” says Robyn, “we are pleased to have the Canadian Quarter Horse Association (CQHA) holding its AGM in conjunction with the HBOC.” The AGM runs Saturday, Jan. 14 at 5:30-7 p.m. The CQHA invites everyone (including non-members) to the AGM.
WHAT WILL YOU SEE? “We have 15 speakers from all over North America,” explains Robyn. Speakers include: Dr. Vern Baron, A Common Sense Approach to Managing
Horse Pastures, Fructans and Laminitis; Dr. Frank Andrews, Management Practices to Reduce Colic and Ulcers in Horses; Dr. Charles Briggs, Medications and Soundness in the Competition Horse; Dr. Lori Warren, What’s New in Equine Nutrition and Conditioning through CrossTraining; Dr. Connie Larson, Feeding the Equine Foot; Susan Harris, Good Movement: How to Get the Best from Your Horse; Andrew Campbell, Social Media for Horse Owners; Dr. Ed Pajor, Animal Welfare and the New Social Ethic; Dr. Jason Bruemmer, Technologies of Reproduction for Stallions; Katie Tims, The New Realities of the Horse Market; Sergeant Derrick McGougan, Bombproofing Horses; Dr. G. F. “Andy” Anderson, Respect Begins on the Ground and Resolving Trailer Loading Problems; Ron Anderson, Let’s Talk Bits; Dr. James Carmalt, New Technologies in Equine Diagnostic Technology; a n d Te r r y G r a n t , T h e R e a l Mantracker. Besides the speaker sessions, delegates can explore the trade show, which is filled with equine businesses and products. “We really appreciate the support of our sponsors, who help to keep registration costs as low as possible,” says Robyn. Registration is $95, $80 for additional registrants that preregister together. Pre-registration includes admission to the Stable Owners Seminar. “The registration fee buys
Horse Industry Association of Alberta’s annual Horse Breeders and Owners Conference, running January 13-15 at the Capri Centre in Red Deer, AB, celebrates 30 years.
admission to the full three days of the conference starting Friday Jan. 13 with the ‘Open Barn’ reception, straight through Saturday’s speakers sessions and the ‘Wine and Dessert Reception’ that evening and on through Sunday sessions until 3 p.m.,” says Robyn. “We also have great prize draws starting on Friday night!”
WHERE AND WHEN IS THE CONFERENCE? The conference is held at the Capri Centre in Red Deer, AB, January 13-15. “We have held the
conference at the Capri Centre since 1983,” says Robyn. “The venue is excellent and allows us to run three speaker sessions at a time to give delegates a choice on what they would like to hear. Red Deer is also a central location that we hope is easy for people all over to access.” The event draws people from all over western Canada. “We have arranged a ‘conference shuttle’ from Grande Prairie to Red Deer,” says Robyn. “It will also stop in Whitecourt and Edmonton. We hope that by arranging the shuttle, we have
made the conference more accessible to people throughout northern Alberta, who may not otherwise be able to attend.” The shuttle will leave on the 13th and return on the 15th.
HOW DO YOU REGISTER? “Registration is available online at www.albertahorseindustry.ca,” says Robyn. “People can register online and pay through PayPal or they can print off the registration form and mail it in. We also accept registrations at the door throughout the weekend of the conference.”
From cow tracker to ‘Mantracker’ By Heather Grovet
owboy, gas tester, outfitter, guide, welder; these are just a few of Terry Grant’s jobs through the years. But how did a regular, everyday Albertan go from those occupations to becoming the lead on a popular TV series called Mantracker? For Grant it happened by having a broad knowledge of wilderness survival and tracking, working hard, and being in the right place at the right time. Grant grew up in Ontario and moved to Alberta at the age of 17, with the goal of seeing the mountains. Although his horse and cattle experience was limited, he managed to get a job that first winter at Bar U Ranch near Longview, where he fed cattle, moved livestock, branded and did general chores. “I grew up riding horses,” Grant says. “But it was working as a cowhand on those big ranches that really taught me to work cattle and ride.” Grant worked at a various ranches for over 25 years, often interspersing cowboying with other jobs. “I’ve done several stints at gas testing,” he says. “And then I did water well servicing. I also worked in construction at a feed mill in Okotoks, welding, and all sorts of odd jobs. But I kept going back to cowboying — I guess it suited me.” On the
side, Grant posed for a few cowboy commercials, and later did a bit part in a Western movie. An interest in hunting helped develop Grant’s tracking abilities. “I guess it started with tracking cows,” Grant explains. “When you’re checking for cattle in hilly country, you pay attention to tracks so you don’t waste time searching in areas where there isn’t any livestock. And if I happened to see a deer spook in front of me, I’d walk over and study its tracks. I’d pay attention to the dirt; which way did the animal go, and how did that affect its track? After a while it got so I could look at a track and it meant something to me.” Eventually Grant began to use those skills to guide big game hunters. Grant joined Turner Valley’s Search and Rescue in 1993, taking specialized courses in tracking people, and then putting his skills in general tracking and knowledge of the bush to use. “There is no money in search and rescue,” he notes. “The most you might be paid is your gas money, but it’s still a very worthwhile thing.” In 2004 Grant’s cousin, Dewey, was approached by TV producers with the concept of Mantracker. Two people will be given a head start in the bush, armed with only a map and compass. The tracker and local guide will be on horseback. They will have to travel 40 km in a maximum of
36 hours without being caught. The producers were looking for someone to fill the lead part, and they told Dewey, “You look like a cowboy, know the backcountry and can track. You fill the bill.” Dewey, who worked as an outfitter in the Rockies, turned the producers down but pointed them to Grant. “I talked to the producers on the phone, and sent them my picture,” Grant says. “They had me do some interviews, and videotaped me on horseback. Finally one of the producers said, ‘I like this guy. Let’s line him up against another 30 people and see how he does against them.’ The second producer said ‘No, he can ride, he can talk and he can guide; he’s our man.’” Grant didn’t hesitate when offered the job. “I thought ‘What the hell, I’ll get to see some good country!’” he laughs. “That first year the show was only a halfhour long, and I was amazed to see how those camera men and producers could take 10 seconds of clips here, and five seconds there, and make a show of it,” says Grant. “At the end of the first year we were able to expand to an hour long show. The extra length allowed us to show the thought processes and strategies the prey, guide and I went through.” Mantracker is now in its sixth year and Grant says he’s enjoyed working on every episode. “There isn’t one episode that stands out
ahead of the others,” he says. “But some of the locations we filmed at had extra challenges. Newfoundland was really tough to ride in; (there’s no) cattle, so the undergrowth doesn’t get knocked down. And Utah’s steep canyons and slick rock made for some interesting rides.” In most cases the guides were responsible for providing a horse for Grant to ride. Handling a wide variety of equines was challenging, but not in the way you might expect. “At first the guides didn’t think I could ride, so they were giving me quiet old plugs,” Grants says. “And those horses often couldn’t handle the work we had to do. Once the sidekicks realized I actually could ride things improved. I’d have about an hour to get the feel for each horse, and then the next day we’d be off in the bush, chasing someone. At times I had problems with certain horses, but there wasn’t a backup horse so I’d just do the best I could. Some horses wouldn’t cross water, so when we got to a stream it would be tough. And others were dude-riding horses; quiet but only trained to follow right behind another. They didn’t know what to do when I trotted and cantered them. And some weren’t very fit, and they had a tough time handling the hundred miles or so we’d travel working on each episode.” Grant was willing to switch
from horse to horse, but he did insist on bringing his own tack, which included saddle, blanket and bridle. “I like my High Country Roper made by Matt Eberle,” Grant says. “It has good swells and cantle to keep me securely seated. Heaven knows what some of the sidekicks would put me in if I didn’t bring my own tack!” At the end of season six Grant will be leaving Mantracker and working in slightly different directions. His website, www. therealmantracker.com, allows people to book him for public speaking engagements, corporate functions or training in tracking and other wilderness activities. “I already do a lot of public speaking all across Canada,” Grant explains. “I’ve talked to denturists, college kids, horsemen and business corporations and they all end up laughing and having a good time. I think that was the amazing thing about Mantracker. When the show started it was predicted the audience would be men aged 18 to 45, but that wasn’t the case. Instead the show interested men, women and children. I’d suggest that the whole horse, cowboy, adventure format intrigues an awful lot of people.” Grant will be speaking at the Horse Breeders and Owners Conference, 8:40 a.m. - 10:10 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 14, 2012.
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
Alberta Horse Breeders and Owners Conference ~ jan. 13-15, 2012
SPECIAL EVENT FEATURE
Icons of equine industry saluted with Distinguished Service Award By Wendy Dudley
PHOTO BY WENDY DUDLEY
Rancher and professional horse wrangler John Scott, of Longview, AB, received the Distinguished Service Award in 2007. Throughout his career, Scott has provided Hollywood movies with thousands of horses. He also is a big promoter of Alberta scenery providing the perfect backdrop for western films.
hether a dressage rider, reiner or barrel racer, anyone who spends most of the day with horses shares a passion for the species. Many devote their life to improving a sport, a breed, the industry profile, or the welfare of the horse. It involves a sacrifice of time but it also means contribution to an industry worth almost $900 million to the Alberta economy. From veterinarians to breeders, from sport horse enthusiasts to tack store owners, those involved with the horse boost its value, says Les Burwash, manager of Alberta Agriculture’s horse industry section. Many of these people go unnoticed, and for this reason the Horse Industry Association of Alberta (HIAA) set out a decade ago to acknowledge people who have significantly contributed towards the development of Alberta’s horse industry — from Ron and Marg Southern who built the Spruce Meadows show jumping complex near Calgary to John Scott, a Longview area rancher who has promoted Alberta and provided thousands of horses for Hollywood movies. Individuals are nominated by the pub-
lic, with the chosen recipient receiving a Distinguished Service Award at the Alberta Horse Breeders and Owners Conference held in Red Deer in January. “It’s very satisfying to receive the award because it’s recognition by your peers,” said Doug Milligan, who won the award in 2008. Milligan, who lives east of Millet, was the first head of the horse industry branch for the Alberta Department of Agriculture. Throughout his career, he helped improve production practices, as well as the care, management and marketing of horses. He now teaches an Introduction to Equine Sciences class at the University of Alberta. “To receive recognition from the whole horse industry is special and meaningful,” said heavy horse enthusiast Bruce Roy, a recipient of the Distinguished Award in 2004. “The horse world is extremely fractured. There are so many disciplines and different breeds, it’s very, very difficult to get everybody on the same track and speaking the same language. So I was extremely honoured to receive this from the horse industry as a whole.” Roy, who lives near Cremona, has spent his life promoting heavy horses, and has bred Percherons since 1957. Over the past six decades, he has helped educate the public
and the industry about all draft horse breeds, speaking and writing about the industry with passion. The Distinguished Award is not necessarily given every year, says Burwash, an HIAA board member. “There are a lot of great people out there doing great things, but this is for those people who do extraordinary things.” The HIAA awarded its first Distinguished Award in 2000. Bill Collins, a veteran cutting horse enthusiast, was the first recipient. He also was the first Canadian to be inducted into the American Quarter Horse Association Hall of Fame. In 1974, he founded the cutting competition at the Calgary Stampede. Nominations for the award are submitted by the public. Recipients are selected from the areas of breeding, training, manufacturing, organization, education, auction sales, export sales, facilities and communication. Nominees also are evaluated on the significance of their accomplishment, public benefit, industry credibility and his or her potential for continued contributions. For more information on how to nominate an individual for the Distinguished Award, go to the HIAA website at www. albertahorseindustry.ca, and click under Projects.
Take skills from the round pen to the board room By Wendy Dudley
rider and horse is about respect for one another. “It’s not all about the horse, and it’s not all about ood horsemanship is me. It’s about both of us coming all about learning to together.” listen and hear what Too often riders make the misthe horse is telling take of picking a horse based on you, says horse specialist and colour, or one that is way beyond clinician, Nettie Barr, of the Sixtheir experience, she says. Barr Barr Ranch, near Grand Prairie, will not sell a horse to a rider AB. The same thing can be says until she is convinced the pair about effective communication are a match. between people, she noted. Poor communication often “Keep it pure and simple, and crops up in training, she says. keep emotions out of it,” says “We’re in a hurry, we’re greedy, Barr, who will be speaking on we always want more. If the horse Positive Networking at the Horse gets one lead change right, be Breeders and Owners Conference grateful. But we end up going for in Red Deer in January. “In the more. We want 20. When a child horse industry, if we listen to one starts to walk, we are grateful for another, and respect one anothone step. We don’t expect them er, we can get so much done.” to run the block.” Alberta is so fortunate to There are parallels between have an organization like the leadership in a round pen and Horse Industry Association of leadership in a board room, says Alberta, the only one of its kind Barr, also a motivational speaker in Canada, she says. “If we build who gives presentations throughpositive networking, we can out North America. build a positive horse industry. “We need to listen to one I believe in a team-playing another, to respect each atmosphere in my clinics, other’s opinions. If we and positive networking don’t listen to the small is about working with things a horse tells others in a positive, us, they will end up progressive teamshouting. By that, I playing mindset, for mean they will buck, the good of us all. rear, bite, or run If the Alberta horse off.” Just like there industry does well, are timid horses and then we all do well.” aggressive horses, there Just like when trainare also timid and assering horses, the meeting tive people. Each needs room is no place for negto be respected and hanativity and harsh emodled differently. One is tions. “If a horse is being PHOTO not right or wrong,” she snotty and snorty, that COURTESY says. “Both need to be doesn’t mean I have to OF NETTIE BARR listened to, rather than be snotty and snorty. I Nettie Bar and her three-year-old Andalusian trying to make them all have to have emotional stallion, Amistoso. Barr will be speaking about the same. We need to fitness. It’s the same with Positive Networking at the Horse Breeders and accept individuality.” people.” Owners Conference in Red Deer.
Barr is the founder of Canadian Natural Horsemanship Inc. that offers various programs for all disciplines, from ground work to advanced riding. “Whether a rider is new or experienced, or rides English or Western, my program gets hung up on horsemanship, and not hung up on labels.” Barr is also a breeder of registered Paint and Azteca horses. She is a former board member of the Alberta Equestrian Federation and a member of several curricular focus groups for colleges, including the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology. Barr offers horse programs that teach riders how to read a horse’s behaviour, interpreting such signs as pinned ears, a raised head, or a swishing tail. Learning equine language is the key to safe riding, she says. The relationship between a
JANUARY 2012 | www.horsesall.com
If she runs into a problem in training, she backs up, trying to find what the horse did not understand. “Training is about closing the holes in the relationship.” Barr, 51, has had a life-long passion for horses. She grew up in southern Alberta, and was never far from a horse until she had an accident on a runaway. It took 15 years before she had the confidence to mount up again, but that mishap enabled her to deal with unsure riders. “I know all about fear and apprehension, so I can empathize.” Once back in the saddle, Barr set a course for a new career. She studied equine behaviour, tak-
ing on-line courses and attending seminars. She is now a certified horse specialist, and has also developed a unique style and philosophy as a clinician. “I take a maximum of six people, my clinics run for four days and I don’t punch a clock. If it takes until 7 p.m. for someone to do something safely, then I stay.” Whether one calls it horse whispering or natural horsemanship, there is nothing mystical about it, she says. “It is just common sense. It is just good horsemanship.” For more information on Nettie Barr visit www.canadiannaturalhorsemanship.com.
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Alberta Horse Breeders and Owners Conference ~ jan. 13-15, 2012
SPECIAL EVENT FEATURE
Packed house expected at annual Stable Owners Seminar
he annual Stable Owners Seminar, starting at 1 p.m. on January 13, unofficially kicks off the Horse Breeders and Owners Conference, running January 13-15, 2012. The afternoon seminar offers valuable information for stable owners and operators of any size or discipline. Since it began in 2007, this popular seminar has evolved into the only one of its kind in Canada and there have never been less than 110 delegates in attendance. “I attribute the consistent numbers of attendees to the quality of topics and credibility of speakers that are brought in to speak to this sector of the horse industry,” says Alberta Stables Initiative project co-ordinator, Heather MitchellMatheson. “What those numbers say to us is that a seminar of this nature is needed in our industry,” says Les Burwash, manager of horse programs, with Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development. Some examples of past speakers and topics include: • Managing Risk through Contracts and Agreements, Esther Schwab of Schwab, Schwab and Schwab, LLP • Get the Leading Edge in your Stable Business, Tara Gamble, Certified Horsemanship Association • Managing the Health of
Client Horses, Dr. Dan French, Okotoks Animal Clinic • Alternative Feeds for Stables, Dr. Bob Coleman, University of Kentucky • Instructor Skills and Ethics, Peggy Brown, Centred Riding and Driving instructor and author, Ohio In 2010, the Stable Owners Seminar evolved to be guided by the Alberta Stables Initiative (ASI). The ASI’s mission is to strengthen Alberta’s stables by promoting safety, animal welfare and sound business practices as well as providing support, education and marketing opportunities for the stable industry. The ASI is an independent initiative under the direction of the Horse Industry Association of Alberta, Alberta Equestrian Federation (AEF), and Alberta Agriculture and Rural Development, with the goal of becoming a self-supporting service for stables. The ongoing success of the Stable Owners Seminar, however, does rely on the support from its partners and the stable industry itself. “We continually strive to represent all sectors of the equine industry and are delighted to see the ongoing success of the Stable Owners Seminar, a seminar that has brought stable owners together to hear knowledgeable speakers deliver topics of
As a precursor to the annual Horse Breeders and Owners conference, the Stable Owners Seminar offers valuable information to stable owners and operators of all sizes and disciplines.
extreme interest in this area,” says Dixie Crowson, president of the AEF. This year marks another change in the ongoing history of the annual Stable Owners Seminar. For the first time ever there will be a fee associated for attending the 2012 seminar. There are some exceptions such as preregistration to the 30th anniversary Horse Breeders and Owners Conference, which includes complimentary admission to the Stable Owners Seminar. Also, ASI participants will receive complimentary admission to what is
quickly becoming their seminar. “We wanted the seminar to really begin standing on its own but like everything, there’s a progression and a need for some help along the way,” says MitchellMatheson. Aside from hearing four quality speakers talk on relevant topics to stable owners and operators, there are some benefits associated with paying the low entry fee of $25. Perks include a complimentary in-room coffee, tea and water station, door prizes and 2012 ASI participation which includes an online listing at
www.findalbertastables.ca and a listing on our stables map. There will be 2,500 maps printed in February 2012 and will serve as yet another resource to stables for those looking to enter in the horse industry. “This will be the first year that we will actually charge admission for the Stable Owners Seminar so it will be interesting to see how that plays out. I am confident that we have built enough of a reputation over the past five years that we will see very little decline in delegate attendance,” says Mitchell-Matheson.
Animal emotions now part of welfare issues By Wendy Dudley
eads up, horse owners. It’s time to take a good look at how you are treating your steeds. It used to be that if you provided water, feed and shelter, you received a passing grade. But under a revised Code of Practice, you may be expected to demonstrate that your horses are indeed healthy and happy, says Dr. Ed Pajor, a professor of animal behaviour and welfare at the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Veterinary Medicine. Pajor will be speaking about animal welfare in the horse industry at this year’s Horse Owners and Breeders Conference held in January in Red Deer, as part of the Fred Pearce lecture series. The Code of Practice for the care and handling of horses is being updated to address animal feelings, says Pajor. This means that horse owners must be due diligent in being able to prove their horses are receiving proper care, from showing medical records to keeping their environment safe. “There may be sharp edges on the pen, or maybe cleanliness isn’t as good as it could be,” Pajor says. The horse industry has a number of issues that make it public and vulnerable, from transportation and slaughter facilities to Thoroughbred racing and rodeo activities, he noted.
“There is strong evidence that concern about animal feelings and their mental states will increase in the future and be a driving force in the development of animal welfare policy,” Pajor says, noting that a new definition of animal welfare is being proposed by the World Organization for Animal Health. While training methods may be results-oriented, this new “state of the animal” approach will consider what the horse experiences while being trained, he says, noting that an animal’s feelings are now becoming part of scientific investigation. Studies underway in Europe will indicate whether a performance horse is stressed in doing its job, whether it be show jumping, cutting horses, or bucking in a rodeo arena. “Most horse owners will tell you their animals like to perform, that they like to go to work. If that’s true, then the behavioral and physiological data collected will support that.” These studies will indicate, for example, whether a horse’s heart rate remains elevated throughout a show, even after it has performed, he says. Pajor would welcome similar studies in North America. “There’s lots of opportunity and the need to do it,” he says. “To say ‘trust me’ isn’t good enough anymore. You have to be able to demonstrate that you have programs in place.”
PHOTO BY WENDY DUDLEY
Alberta’s horse industry is vulnerable to public criticism when it comes to animal welfare issues, from slaughter facilities to rodeo. Codes of Practice are being upgraded to address animal welfare policy.
If owners and organizations can show they are following specific procedures and codes of practice to address an animal’s state of mind, then it will be easier to combat animal activists who protest such activities as rodeo or Thoroughbred racing. “It’s hard to fight against data,” Pajor says.
Other issues the horse industry must be aware of is the public’s dislike of pain, such as castration or branding without pain control, he added. “Most people can accept these practices if pain is mitigated.” Much of the public’s discontent around treatment of livestock is a
result of the gap between consumers and the source of their food, says Pajor. Also, pet owners are projecting their treatment of dogs and cats onto farm animals, including horses. And it isn’t just large organizations like rodeo stock contractors who are being scrutinized, Pajor says. Even the owner of a few horses on an acreage can expect to be under observation. “Those are the horses people see when they are driving around. They look at them and wonder if they are being properly cared for.” In fact, a third of calls received by the Alberta SPCA are horserelated, says Tim Battle, director of education. “Often it’s just a case of educating the owner. They may need help in determining the right kind of feed, or how to care for an elderly horse. Or maybe they don’t know the feet need to be trimmed.” The Fred Pearce lecture series, established in 1995, focuses on equine welfare issues. It is named after Fred Pearce, a farmer near Huxley, AB, who had a passion for horses and left his estate to the Alberta SPCA after he died in 1993. During his life, he worked teams of horses long after tractors replaced draft horses. “From what we were told, he was a quiet guy,” says Battle. “He kept horses to the end and buried them on his property.”
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
Calendar of Events Send your announcements by email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll include your event or announcement free!
The Month Ahead: HORSE BREEDERS AND OWNERS CONFERENCE
JANUARY 13-15, 2012 Capri Centre, Red Deer, AB www.albertahorseindustry.ca
CLINICS & SEMINARS FEBRUARY 10-12 Cochrane, AB Dominique Barbier Classical Dressage Clinic. Lecture Friday night, clinic 9am-5pm Saturday & Sunday. For details, visit: www.elationequineser vices. com
MARCH 18-24 Edmonton, AB Equanimity Edge Equine Massage Therapy Course. Instructor: Sidonia McIntyre. For details, call: 1-888-EQUINE2 or visit: www.equinerehab.ca 25-28 Edmonton, AB Equanimity Edge Vertebral Realignment Course. Instructor: Sidonia McIntyre. For details, call: 1-888-EQUINE2 or visit: www.equinerehab.ca
18-19 Madden, AB Reining Alberta Open Rider Clinic at Prairie Mountain Ranch featuring Jordan Larson. For details, visit: www.reiningalberta.net
EQUINE EVENTS JANUARY 3-18 Los Angeles, CA Spirit of the West Cruise from LA to Hawaii. For details, visit: www.hugh-mclennan.com 21-22 Richmond, BC Equine Education Conference at the Delta Vancouver Airport Hotel. For details, contact Kelly Coughlin: email@example.com
FEBRUARY 11 100 Mile House, BC Cowboy Concert. For details, call: 1-888-763-2224 or visit: www.bcchs.com 17-19 Saskatoon, SK Saskatchewan Equine Expo at Prairieland Park. For details, call: 306-931-7149 or visit: www.saskatchewanequineexpo. com
MARCH 9-11 Murfreesboro, TN 2012 Road to the Horse Competition. Team Canada represented by Jonathan Field & Glenn Stewart. For details, call: 325736-5000 or visit: www.roadtothehorse.com
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Association News Off season still busy for Chinook team penners CHINOOK TEAM PENNING ASSOCIATION www.chinookpenning.com
By Lillian Dalton
lthough the 2011 Chinook regular season has ended and 2012 has not yet begun, the riders continue to hone their skills and have a lot of fun at events hosted by practice arenas such as O’Reilly O’Rena, Thompson Training Center and Hillside Acres. O’Reilly O’Rena’s final sorting was held November 27, and the lucky winners were Garvin Campbell and Trudy Cutfield. The November 11 sorting event was won by Kent Hillard and Trudy Cutfield! Rider ratings and membership information will be available soon, at chinookpenning.com and show dates for 2012 are scheduled as follows: February 25-26: Cam Clark Ford & Trailers, Olds Cow Palace March 3 & 17: Okotoks Ag Society, Okotoks Agriplex March 31 & April 7: Dave Fraser, Okotoks Agriplex April 21 & 22: Willow Creek Ag Society, Claresholm Agriplex May 5 & 6: Dave Fraser, Claresholm Agriplex June 2: Okotoks Ag Society, Okotoks Agriplex June 16 & 18: Silver Slate, Nanton July 28 & 29: Silver Slate, Nanton September 8-9: Regional Finals, Claresholm Agriplex
#5 Class Hi-Pt. year-end “Chinook Penner” saddle winner Doug Ohlmann (Presented by Sponsor, Donna O’Reilly of O’Reilly O’Rena).
#10 Class Hi-Pt. year-end “Chinook Penner” saddle winner Kelly Applebee (Presented by board directors Kelly Mackay and Donna O’Reilly).
Dena and Gerald Fuss named volunteers of the year PERFORMANCE STANDARDBREDS www.p-standardbreds.org
By Jackie Golightly
few dedicated members braved gale force winds to attend the Performance Standardbreds 2011 AGM on November 27, 2011. A special thank you goes to Jane Bruce, who hosted the meeting at her elegant home south of Calgary. We arrived just as the power failed, but luckily there was enough fresh-made coffee in the pot for everyone. Meeting Highlights: Knightsbridge Homes has generously offered to spon-
Dena and Gerald Fuss driving Standardbred gelding Pocket Actor. sor our ambassador horse, Timmy, enabling continued development of his talents. The concession stand run by the club at Performance Standardbreds events has been a success and opportunities will be sought to carry it to other events. We discussed setting up an information booth in downtown Calgary, perhaps offering fridge mag-
nets and promotional vetwrap as an incentive for donations. We will again participate at the Mane Event and consider other events at Country Living. Hopefully, another meeting in May, paired with a social event or fun day, will attract better attendance. We can always count on seeing Dena and Gerald Fuss at the AGM as well as
any time Performance Standardbreds needs help. In recognition of their deep commitment, they have been jointly honoured with the 2011 Doug Martin Volunteer of the Year Award. Dena and Gerald’s association with Performance Standardbreds came about through harness racing, from which they’ve since retired. Their dear friend, the late Kees Peters, and his Friesen horses inspired an interest in carriage driving and the two disciplines came together in the Fuss’ first pleasure driving horse: Pocket Actor, a Standardbred gelding not fast enough to race. Gerald drove him in competition and fellow competitors were amazed by the ability and athleticism of this little powerhouse. Dena, a talented and accomplished artist, also competed and with her wonderful sense of humour recalled a trip into the ring with Pocket when a borrowed skirt slipped into the wheel and almost caused acute embar-
rassment, not to mention arrest for indecent exposure. Pocket now lends his elegance to the Bar U Guest Ranch as a carriage horse, demonstrating to visitors that Standardbreds have talents besides racing, and showing off his muscle around the big draft horses. Gerald and Dena maintain involvement with the breed via their saddle broke broodmare, and of course through their tireless support of Performance Standardbreds. The Fuss equine family also includes a rescued Paint and two Sicilian donkeys: Freddie and his Mom. Volunteers like Dena and Gerald provide the enthusiasm and fellowship that makes Performance Standardbreds a worthy and rewarding cause. Dena and Gerald Fuss, we salute you and thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your effort and dedication. Congratulations on your well-deserved award!
Agribition finds new home for buckskin overo filly SASKATCHEWAN PAINT HORSE CLUB www.saskpainthorseclub.com
By Nicole Gauthier
ell winter is upon us and bring on the fuzzy hair coats! I hope everyone is geared up to have a great holiday season. The
SPHC would like to thank everyone who helped out this year to make our 2011 events a great success! This includes all of our sponsors, volunteers, participants and members. We j u s t f i n i s h e d u p w i t h Agribition events and a huge thank you to everyone involved with setting up the booth, running the booth, taking care of the filly, selling tickets and tearing down the booth. You guys did a great job again this year. Congratulations to Kelsey Bouchard from McLean, SK for winning this years agribition raffle filly. This filly is a 2010 buck-
skin overo named NSP Rich Brown Sugar aka “Sweets.” She drew a lot of attention at Agribition with her big blue eyes. This was my first “Agribition experience” and it was great visiting with all the kids and telling them all about Paint horses and our club. Thank you to everyone who purchased tickets and supported the club. We have four young ladies who made the PAC leaders list in several events this year. Congratulations to Audra Cooper and Clayboys Sassy Girl winning the high point SPHC PAC award for 2011. The
other three who did very well this year are: Taylor Gardner and Mr Sylvester placing reserve high point; Samantha Boxall and A Classic Duramax placing third; Taylor Gardner and The Best Man placing fourth; and Britanny Campbell with Laces Medicine placing fifth. Great job ladies. As you may already be aware, Saskatoon Prairieland Park is hosting the 2012 Equine Expo for the first time, February 17-19, 2012. This will be an excellent learning event for horse enthusiasts of all kinds as it brings many aspects of
horse care/training/trends/fashion/ etc. to the table. The SPHC plans to have a booth set up the entire weekend to help promote our club, provide membership information and forms, and also present the newly formed Saskatchewan Junior Paint Horse Club, the SjPHC! Please mark May 19-20, 2012 on your calendars. This is the date for the Lloydminster Spring Show and we are looking forward to a fun and exciting show. There will be youth activities and jackpots available. Please keep checking the website for updates.
www.horsesall.com | JANUARY 2012
Year-end awards celebrate the best in chuckwagon sport WORLD PROFESSIONAL CHUCKWAGON ASSOCIATION www.wpca.com
By Billy Melville
night of celebration took take place at the Deerfoot Inn & Casino in Calgary on Saturday, Oct. 22, 2011. The annual WPCA awards banquet honoured those who achieved greatness this past season, as well as those who have contributed to the growth and prosperity of the most exciting professional sport in the world today. Kelly Sutherland was the top honoree this year capturing the
World Chuckwagon Championship for a record 12th time and added the 2011 WPCA Dodge Pro Tour Championship as well. Last year was a memorable season for “The King” as he won his eighth Ponoka Stampede Title, tying him with his mentor, the great Ralph Vigen for the most ever. He also claimed his 12th Calgary Stampede Rangeland Derby Championship. Chad Cosgrave was the 2011 World Champion Outrider. He added to his lead with every show and won his second career World Outriding Championship by a whopping 690 points over Chance Flad — the largest margin of victory in WPCA history. The WPCA Chuckwagon Person of the Year is the WPCA’s highest honour given to the individual who has made outstanding and significant contributions to advancing and
improving the overall status and integrity of the WPCA and the sport of chuckwagon racing. The 2011 recipient was Mark Sutherland. The George Normand Lifetime Builders Award is given to individuals who have dedicated a minimum of five years of service to the sport of Chuckwagon racing as a competitor, sponsor, race official, or somehow affiliated with chuckwagon racing and the WPCA. It is a very special award in the fact that it is not always presented annually, and the recipients become part of a very special and exclusive group. The 2011 recipient was Buddy Bensmiller. Troy Dorchester received the WPCA Clean Drive Award, Mitch Sutherland was named the WPCA’s Top Rookie Driver, Cole Flad was named the WPCA’s Top Rookie Outrider, Chad Fike received the Rod Glass Memorial Award for most
improved outrider, and John Walters received the Herman Flad Memorial Award for most improved driver. The WPCA special tribute was given to the legendary Tom Glass. The horses also shared in the awards through the WPCA Equine Outfit of Excellence. Jerry Bremner’s “Whisper” was named the champion Right Leader, Kelly Sutherland’s “Deb” was named the champion Left Leader, Grant Profit’s “King” was named the champion Right Wheeler and Mark Sutherland’s “Tex” was named the champion Left Wheeler. The champion outriding horses were Chance Bensmiller’s “Kodan” and Rick Fraser’s “Max.” The WPCA also gave Special Recognition to the Grande Prairie Chuckwagon Heritage Foundation for its work in promoting chuckwagon racing in the Peace Country.
Lucky Diamond Chip makes all four leading sires lists ALBERTA PAINT HORSE CLUB www.northernhorse.com/aphc
By Connie Webb
s the New Year greets us, the Alberta Paint Horse Club is busy making plans for our 2012 year. Our Annual General Meeting in January will welcome some new directors, some old directors and our 2012 executive. Being a volunteer member on the board of directors is definitely not as easy as many of you may think. Every month when we meet, there’s
a long agenda of important items to be discussed, and resolved, and it’s each director’s responsibility to act in the best interest of our members. It’s just not what that particular director would or would not like, it’s being able to see what’s best for our members and ultimately our club. Last year was a great year for our club with record participation at the shows, renewed interest and participation in our Canadian Colour Futurity program, an excellent representation at Spruce Meadows and some very worthy charitable events. The 2012 board of directors will continue to work with our members to ensure we can all enjoy a successful 2012. More details on the AGM, new board/executive and year end high point winners in the next newsletter.
2012 SHOW DATES • June 9-10: APHC Hay City Classic Show, Olds, AB. Including CCF Yearling Halter Futurities, CCF 3 Year Old Western Pleasure & Hunter Under Saddle Futurities, CCF 3/4 Year Old Reining and Trail Futurities. • July 13-15: Big West Color Classic Show, Drayton Valley, AB. • August 2-5: Zone 10 Zone-ORama, Ponoka, AB. • Sept. 1-2: APHC Labour Day Classic Show, Olds, AB. • Sept. 29-30: APHC Fall Classic Show, Ponoka, AB And don’t forget about the Saskatchewan Paint Horse Club’s Lloydminster Show, May 19-20. As we all know, we have some very fine Paint horses right here in Alberta
but here’s the latest update on one pretty special Alberta stallion. Lucky Diamond Chip of Pipestone Paints in Caroline, AB, has had the honour of making all four, 2011 APHA Leading Sires lists as follows: #3 Halter Class Winners (tied); #6 Point Earning Halter Horses; #16 Performance Class Winners; and #18 Point Earning Performance Horses. Ron and Cathy are so proud of all the "Chip" owners and know this accomplishment could not have been made without their showing and success. Congratulations to Pipestone Paints and “Chip” on achieving this milestone. That pretty well sums up this month’s newsletter. Don’t forget to send me any info you’d like to share because otherwise it’s just me, rambling on.
Replace lost income with new insurance policy benefit ALBERTA EQUESTRIAN FEDERATION www.albertaequestrian.com
By Sonia Dantu MEMBERSHIP PROCESSING PILOT PROJECT The AEF is pleased to announce that the Alberta Horse Trials Association (AHTA) and the Alberta Equestrian Vaulting Association (AVEA) have partnered with us in a new one-year membership processing pilot program for the 2012 membership year. The Canadian Cowboy Challenge (CCC) is also considering partnering and by the time you read this, we hope to have them on board. AHTA and AEVA memberships can already be purchased through the AEF simply by logging in, or registering with the AEF online system. This program is designed to facilitate the process of purchasing multiple memberships, offering a one-stop membership option for members of these organizations!
THE WILD ROSE RIDE — SEPTEMBER 22, 2012 Plans are in the works for the AEF’s very first fundraising trail
ride event at West Bragg Creek in Kananaskis Country. Ride it or drive it for a fun-filled day enjoying one of the jewels of Alberta’s trail systems. The AEF is stepping out of its traditional role and exploring innovative services for underrepresented groups. The proceeds from the Wild Rose Ride will go to support of some of these new programs and initiatives. For more information, contact the Wendy in the AEF office. Look for more details to follow in Alberta Bits and on the AEF website.
WEEKLY ACCIDENT INDEMNITY (WAI) AEF and its insurance partner, Capri Insurance Services Ltd. have a new benefit offered exclusively to members. This is an inexpensive insurance policy that will replace lost income if you are unable to work or continue to earn income as a direct result of an unexpected injury. • Up to $500 per week and is paid tax free! • Coverage is 24/7 and covers any injury, anywhere (and is not restricted to horse-related injuries). • Waiting period to be eligible for benefits is only eight days. • Benefits will be paid for up to 26 weeks. • Cost of coverage is only $100 and must be purchased directly from Capri Insurance.
JANUARY 2012 | www.horsesall.com
PHOTO CREDIT: DAVE BUCKERFIELD.
Michael Hansen is one of the four AEF members who achieved the 1000hour milestone in the Ride and Drive program. Here, Michael and Lucas learn to stand on a mattress. (Lucas was his first horse and recently died at age 28.)
Chinook driving club reviews fun-filled year ALBERTA CARRIAGE DRIVING ASSOCIATION www.albertadriving-acda.ca
By Anne Allison
reetings from the Chinook Carriage Driving Club! Last year was a busy and fun-filled year for our members, beginning with several cutter rallies during the winter months, and continuing on to the Mane Event in April in Red Deer. Chinook co-hosted a booth with Stonebridge Driving Club, which was beautifully decorated (thank you to Diamond H Carriages), and proved very popular with the Mane Event crowds. Two successful clinics were held in the spring, a Cheryl Fotheringham bombproofing clinic, and pleasure and competition driving with Deb Laderoute. The annual Chinook Pleasure Driving Show was held in July at Gord Fulton’s and Geri McNeil’s farm just west of Bowden, near Red Lodge. The weather was hot and the entries were a bit less this year but everyone had an enjoyable weekend. This is a grassroots show with emphasis on learning, fun and camaraderie. Participants are able to camp on the grounds, and one of the highlights is the potluck supper and campfire on the Saturday night after the day’s competition. The 2012 Chinook Pleasure Show is scheduled for July 21/22. Several Chinook Club members competed at the Eagle Ridge Combined Driving Competition hosted by the Stonebridge Club in August. This event is located at Bertelsen’s farm in the Kevisville area. Congratulations to Chinook’s Marilyn Clarke and her VSE, Knight, who won the trophy for best all round dressage score in all divisions — way to go, Marilyn and Knight! Autumn brought the opportunity for our members to attend a cross-country pleasure drive once again hosted by Bertelsen’s, and enjoy the lovely fall colours and scenery. The AGM was held in October at the Caluori Pavilion in Olds, where the 2012 Executive was decided: President, Melany Moore; Vice President, Judy Bertelsen; Treasurer, Judy Foster; Secretary, Patty Carley; Education, Marilyn Clarke; Reporter, Anne Allison; Directors, Gordon Fulton, Richard Foster, Sandy Clarke and Barb Hillman. Finally, the season wound up with a wonderful Christmas party in a beautiful setting provided by the Red Lodge Guest Ranch. The roast beef dinner with Yorkshire pudding was enjoyed by all who attended and a chinese gift exchange topped the evening. Meetings are held the second Thursday of each month, usually in the Calouri Pavilion in Olds. New members are always welcome! For more information on the Chinook Carriage Driving Club please phone Melany at (403) 638-2972.
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Breakaway 13-14 yrs. 1 Biever, Logan 6.09 60
Boys Goat Tying 9-14 Yrs. 1 Thomson, K’s 13.78 60 2 Schlosser, Stran 14.41 50 3 Eirikson, Sawyer 16.76 40
Goat Tying 8 & Under 1 Crombez, Justise 14.63 60 2 McAllister, Terris 17.79 50 3 Day Chief, Kale 18.76 40 Barrels 6 & Under 1 Day Chief, Jayton 21.36 60 2 Borsy, Kasha 25.49 50 3 Statham, Kellan 28.78 40
Breakaway 11-12 yrs. 1 Stevens, Hayze 2.68 60 2 Schlosser, Stran 3.14 50 3 Christianson, Lochlan 5.56 40 Breakaway 10 & Under 1 Smeltzer, Grady 6.17 60 Team Roping 1 Biever, Logan 8.73 60 Thomson, K’s 60 2 Hays, Taylor 10.3 50 Zur, Cooper 50 3 Lloyd, Matea 15.19 40 Savage, Reili 40
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Barrels 11-12 Yrs. Kielstra, Chrissy 16.53 60 Berreth, Logan 16.65 50 Savage, Reili 16.66 40
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Barrels 13-14 Yrs. King, Dereka 15.71 60 McElhone, Cheyenne 16.15 50 Pugsley, Emily 16.2 40
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Barrels 13-14 Yrs. King, Dereka 15.71 60 McElhone, Cheyenne 16.15 50 Pugsley, Emily 16.2 40
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Goat Tail Untying (7 & Under) 1 Powelson, Maysa 9.06 60 2 Day Chief, Jake 9.24 50 3 Smith, Shelby 9.71 40
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Poles 7 -8 yrs 1 Statham, Kenda 21.98 60 2 Crombez, Justise 22.45 50 3 Kelly, Kyla 24.24 40
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FEBRUARY EXTRAVAGANZA PREVIEWS
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for Saturday & Sunday Horses will start at 8am on Saturday The Order Will Be: 1. Trail Class 2. Cutting 3. Reining 4. Team Roping Saturday Sale Starts at Noon • Sunday Sale Starts at 8am.
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