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Buck Brannaman

Philosopher horseman Silver Spurs Equine

The Home of Legends

Model Horse

The making of a Breyer Hoof Abscess Care

Sew Easy!

Make your own show shirt

Hold your Horses Keep the farrier safe

Freedom Horses Horses helping

victims of violence

Editor/Publisher Susan Pennell-Sebekos

A wild ride!

Photography Brooke Nesbitt

Circulation Welcome to our first anniversary edition! I remember the exact moment when I realized I needed to launch a horse magazine. I was driving, thinking how I would love to create my own magazine and then, in the next instant, noticing I was late to take my daughter to her riding lesson. That’s when it hit me like I’d walked into a door ~ a HORSE magazine! Why hadn’t I thought of this before? I was so excited I couldn’t wait to beg... um, ask.. my husband if he’d support me on this, my wildest ride. He was then, and is now, Rein’s biggest fan, and I thank him daily for believing in me. Without him, Rein would still just be a note scribbled in my idea file. And thank you, too, so many advertisers and readers who have been there for us during the trials and tribulations of getting a publication off the ground. We are humbled by your kindness and encouragement. We will continue to grow, but promise to always listen to what our readers and advertisers would like to see in Rein. So, in this our celebration ~ and largest ~ issue, we proudly present editorial we know you will love. And you will love Buck. If you have not yet had a chance to see Buck, the Film, carve a reminder into your desk to hunt down the closest theatre, it’s that important to make sure you see it. Buck is coming to DVD and Rein has copies for you to win! Buck is a film that every horse owner, rider, and heck, anyone who breathes, should see. His wisdom, gained through the years and through horses, will help all of us in our day-to-day struggles, not just with our horses. Overcoming obstacles to create lives we want to live is a theme this issue. And as always, we hope you enjoy this issue! We hope you, too, have a wild and fabulous ride!

Beth Baker

Executive Publisher Peter Sebekos


Advertising Production Editorial Distribution

Rein Magazine is published by Free Rein Publishing Publisher’s Agreement # 42046517

56 Glenridge Avenue St. Catharines, ON L2R 4X1

Vol 1 Issue 4 ISSN 1923-3604 (Print) ISSN 1923-3612 (Online)

Rein Magazine is available in selected tack strores and through request subscription for digital issue. Mailed subscriptions are as follows: $15, 1-yr; $25, 2-yr; $32.50, 3-yr

Rein also thanks Will Rogers for his always timely words of wisdom You can find them at the bottom of our pages.

2011 ~ Anniversary

Anniversary Edition features

8 Buck Brannaman


28 the making of a breyer

34 Freedom Horses


Silver Spurs Equine

“Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.”


74 Slow feeding

108 Look what we Found!

48 Acts of God

76 Start ‘em young

111 Insurance

56 Turning in a box

82 Sew What?

112 The Paddock

~ Staying safe during disasters

~ Extreme Trail expert explains

58 Are you afraid?

~ Jane Savoie and Dr Edgette help us deal with our fear

66 Ask the Horse

~ Straight from the horse’s mouth

68 Winter’s coming! ~ Winterize your trailer

70 Time to move?

~ Deciding when to leave a barn

~ Incredible bridles

~ Preventing overeating

~ Getting kids into the saddle

~ Our first article in our series to help you make your own rail shirt

~ For when he needs you

~ Business directory

116 Recipes

~ Sweet somethings!

86 Ask the farrier

~ Abscesses & Holding Horses

118 What’s this

horse Thinking?

90 Barn First Aid ~ Get your kit ready

100 Grain disorders ~ Ask the Nutritionist

102 Showmanship


Squishy & Fringe

reach rein

~ Basics for success

102 Photoshoot

Looking for us? Rein is available free through select tack and feed stores and our digital issue is free via enrollment on our site

42 Reining 101

~ The first in our series

QR codes for Smart Phones take you right to the site!

Cover photo credit: Spooks Gotta Gun, Cappy jackson 2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


“Why, Daddy, do you have to go and ride the faraway horses?”

Horses are incredibly forgiving. They fill in places we’re not capable of filling ourselves. They’ve given people a new hope, a new lease on life. A horse really wants to please you, to get along

Reata Brannaman, now a young woman, had asked her father Buck Brannaman why he was always leaving to see other people’s horses. Buck spends a lot of time on the road. Nine months of the year, Brannaman (who is often described as part guru, part legend, part folk hero), leaves his wife and daughters to give horsemanship clinics to people across the country. And he’s done this for years. It was at one of these clinics that he met Cindy Meehl, the first filmmaker Brannaman trusted with his story, a story he’d shared in his book, Faraway Horses: The Adventures and Wisdom of One of America’s Most Renowned Horsemen (Lyons Press), in which he told of his and his brother Smokie’s childhood with a horribly abusive father, while all the time traveling to entertain audiences with their rope tricks, and how he used that past to help him understand horses. Although other filmmakers had approached Buck Brannaman about doing a film on his life as an abused rodeo kid who found his place in life as a horse trainer and philosopher. But Brannaman turned them down. “I just said: ‘No, no thanks. Move along now; my life is just fine like it is, and you might make it to where it isn’t.’ “ Brannaman, however, took the risk of allowing first-time filmmaker/ director Cindy Meehl , to tell his story. And he can’t really say what made him say yes this time. “I trusted that she wouldn’t disappoint me,” he says. “Buck’s story has a freshness that can be very moving,” says Meehl, “especially in a time when the world is looking for direction. I think that Buck has a unique way of encouraging people to do and see things that they thought were impossible. He will also make you see things in your own life that you may or may not want to see. He’s pretty straightforward in a tough

cowboy kind of way, but maybe that’s what we all need right now.” And, she admits, “ I am pretty hard to impress, so I thought if someone could inspire me that much, then they would probably inspire others, too.” And so, through 300 hours of tape, distilled into an 88-minute documentary that has taken film audiences by surprise. “I’ve never even been near a horse,” said one audience member at the Toronto ‘Hot Docs’ film festival, “but this gentleman’s wisdom and common sense have left me with some great lessons about how to live my own life. Touching and provocative.” Buck Brannaman’s wisdom was hard won. Dan Brannaman Buck and his brother Bill, grew up in Idaho and Montana as Dan and Bill Brannaman, but his father didn’t think audiences wanted trick ropers named Dan and Bill, so Dan became “Buckshot” and Bill became “Smokie.” Buck started learning to rope at three years old. And he learned always in fear that if he didn’t perform well enough, his father’s anger would rain down. Hard. “My dad gave us the choice of practising roping tricks or getting whipped,” Brannaman says. So he learned. Brannaman and his brother were beaten constantly by their alcoholic father ~ especially when they did not perform up to his expectations. “When something is scared for its life, I understand that,” says Brannaman. In the short term, you may temporarily intimidate someone into good performance, but intimidation ultimately leads to fear, which is paralyzing,” he says. “The dread would sometimes be worst than the beating and it’s crazy because he would beat us up like he was in a bar fight. It wasn’t just a whipping. It was like he was beating up a full-grown man. There would be times when he’d say, ‘When we

get home you know what’s coming.’ You knew there was nothing you could say or do to change his mind. Guaranteed it was going to happen and it always did. I almost wanted to tell him to stop the truck and let’s just get it over with. “They say God won’t give you anymore than you can handle, but there have been a few times in my life where I thought I really didn’t want to know how much more I can handle.” When Brannaman was 11 his mother died, and the beatings increased. But when Buck’s bruises were noticed by his gym teacher, the sheriff was called. The boys were taken in by Forrest and Betsy Shirley, who ran a foster home. It was with the Shirleys that Brannaman learned what a real family was about. Although, seemingly safe, the brothers still had to worry about their father. “The first few years when we were with Betsy


and Forrest, he would send my brother and me birthday cards and tell us that when we turned 18 he was going to kill us,” Brannaman recalled. “And he’d send us letters and tell us that he’d been up the side of the mountain watching us through the scope of his rifle and that he could take us out any time he wanted. “So that kind of weighs heavy on a little fellow’s brain, you know.” When Buck was about 17 he wrote to his father forgiving him, in order to lift the burden of the mistreatment. “I did it because of the influence of Betsy, my foster mom,” he said. “I had been thinking about it. And I knew my dad was getting quite a bit of age on him because he was 52 when I was born.” His father responded but didn’t take responsibility for his actions. “I wrote Faraway Horses because

I wanted people to know that you can change the course of your life. The course that was set for me early in life was going in the wrong direction and it would have been a whole lot easier to end up just like my dad and yet I’m nothing like him. I wanted people to know that they can do something about it and didn’t have to accept the hand they were dealt. No matter who might have tormented you, the one thing they can’t ever take away from you is that at some point in your life you’re given an opportunity to make choices and you have to own the path you take because there comes a time when you can no longer blame other people for where you are and have to take charge of your own life.” In the book, Buck explains the relationship between a horse who has been mistreated and his

“Rumor travels fast, but it don’t stay put as long as truth.”

own childhood experiences. Buck’s abusive father caused him to taste first hand the horror of not knowing if he would live to see another day. This depth of fear can be the same for a horse, who, by nature, views the human as a predator. His foster parents, through proactive discipline, leadership, and direction along with loving, sympathy and support helped Buck to learn self confidence. Buck feels that if the Shirleys had coddled him, he probably would have become spoiled. He knows that a horse can become spoiled too if not given the right guidance. Similar to how the Shirleys raised him, Buck explains that directing a horse with a “Not that; do this instead,” discipline helps the horse learn without fear. Buck says, “That time in my life, from the first day on the Shirley’s ranch, made me understand the needs of horses that have been treated poorly and are scared or troubled. You can’t just fix things by showing them love while doing nothing with them. You have to give them some direction, a purpose, a job. They need something to do, a direction to take, a vision of the future so that the past eventually becomes irrelevant.” The valuable lessons Buck learned at the Shirleys helped Buck make a good life for himself and take the tools to use in his work with horses. According to Buck, being an adult is about choice. Buck believes we all need to be responsible for our own actions and that we can all take charge of our own life. 2011 ~ Rein Anniversary

Brannaman was the basis for the character “Tom Booker”, the central figure in Nicholas Evans’ best-selling novel The Horse Whisperer and the film version, directed by Robert Redford “Others have falsely claimed to be the inspiration for Tom Booker in ‘The Horse Whisperer.’ The one who truly inspired me was Buck Brannaman. His skill, understanding, and his gentle, loving heart have parted the clouds for countless troubled creatures. Buck is the Zen master of the horse world.” Nicholas Evans Author of The Horse Whisperer

Whisperer While still in his teens, he came met Tom Dorrance and Ray Hunt, legendary horsemen, who both helped Buck to learn even more than he thought possible. Buck will often say, “If it looks good, I got it from Tom Dorrance and Ray Hunt. If it looks bad, I did it.” Buck started working clinics with Ray Hunt and not long after launched his own tours. Crisscrossing the country nine months out of the year meeting people and horses and imparting his knowledge. “It’s what I would call magical,” says one of the women who attended a recent clinic of Buck’s. “He came into that arena and horses he’d never met seemed to watch him with respect the minute he set foot on the place. He had horses following him around like puppies.” Buck, the film, takes the audience with the horseman as he holds clinics and helps those ‘horses solve their people problems.’ In fact, one palomino stallion, in a scene that was almost cut from the film,

demonstrates, not only what can happen when owners do not take underscores Buck’s insistence that owners take responsibility for their horses graphically portrays what can go wrong. But, not only what can go wrong with horses, but what might have happened to Buck if he had not been taken in by the Shirleys. Born oxygen-deprived, the horse is resuscitated by its owner but never trained or gelded. The horse is wild, attacking anyone near it. The film allows Buck’s emotions to surface. He wants to help the horse, and probably could, but he simply doesn’t have the time. He’s agonizing, the audience feels it along with him. We’re certain he wants to show his true anger at the situation, but takes the opportunity to try to teach the owner, who admits she has more like him at home in a field, how this is her fault. She has failed 11

the horse. As difficult as this scene is to watch, Brannaman said that he’s glad it is in the film. “Horses have to be disciplined,” he said. “They aren’t like little Jack Russells. If you have children, dogs, or horses … you have a great responsibility.” So is he ever afraid to be doing what he’s doing? He says he’s simply cautious, but confident he knows enough to prevent any problems. “You can get to the level where you aren’t afraid of horses,” he said.

Take this with you

“I wanted to encourage people that even if you might have a bad beginning, you don’t have to have a bad ending. Cindy’s documentary has brought up interest in the story and we’re actually fairly close to doing a feature film based on my book. It’s really not going to be a horse film, although there will be some of that because the horse really defines me, and has been such a great salvation and rescue for me.

Working with horses sort of picked me and now that’s all I do.” And, what does Brannaman hope will come from audiences watching the film? He hopes that they won’t want to become like him, but will look at his foster mother, a woman who raised 23 boys, and decide instead to emulate her. After all, if she hadn’t given him a home and loved him, there probably wouldn’t have been a Buck Brannaman.

Training tips

Don’t train with treats or bribes: “All it does is make is make a contemptuous, spoiled horse,” says Brannaman. So go easy on the cubes of sugar and carrots. Your goal is to create an atmosphere where good teamwork is steadily acknowledged and appreciated, but where extravagant praise and rewards are reserved for exceptional performance. Mistakes happen: “You have to allow the horse to make mistakes,” says Brannaman. “The horse will

learn from mistakes no different from a human. You can’t get to where he dreads making mistakes for fear of what’s going to happen after he does.” Because of his abusive past at the hands of his father, “when something is scared for his life, I understand that.” Brannaman’s tactic for correcting mistakes involves waving flags and tapping the horses gently with them. It gets their attention and signals that a correction is in order without alarming or hurting them. Acknowledge your own faults. “This horse tells me a lot about you,” he says to the woman with the palomino. She realizes she has set her horse up for failure. Says Brannaman, “If you can be a leader to your horse, you can be a leader in other areas of your life.” And, he says, “There’s no wisdom worth having that isn’t hard won.”

Photo credits: ‘Album, from left to right, images from the Brannaman’s and Faraway Horses of Buck’s youth/ Robert Redford and Buck Brannaman, Robert Kelly, Touchstone Films. Filmstrip Images courtesy of IFC and Cedar Creek Films.


“If stupidity got us in this mess, how come it can’t get us out.”

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary




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Rein chats with the enthusiastic and charming Michael Miola of Silver Spurs ranch. I will never forget the first time a saw a reining competition. It was in 1993, we had just bought our ranch in Kiowa, Colorado, which we were going to use primarily as a vacation getaway. The Kiowa County Fair was going on and we went figuring it would be a good way to meet our neighbors. There was a local reining competition and we sat in the stands and watched. The first rider to come out was a young girl about 15, all decked out in her show attire, riding a beautiful palomino mare. She executed pattern six and as soon as she started to turn her horse my tongue dropped and when she executed the stops Michelle and I were on our feet cheering. It was love at first sight and we have been dedicated to reining ever since. What appealed to us the most was the obvious partnership between the horse and rider and the amazing athleticism of a reining horse. To Michelle and me, reining is poetry in motion.


Conquistador Whiz

Spooks Gotta Gun

“To us, reining is poetry in motion.” ~ Michael Miola

To Michael Miola, a great reining horse is the combination of many things. First – Confirmation. A reining horse needs large and powerful hind quarters, chest and shoulders to power him/her through the stops. The back legs have to be straight so there is no spreading in the stops. The angle from the hock to the hoof has to be just right, not too straight and not to steep, so the horse can get its hind legs underneath itself properly to stop. The back has to be straight not downhill. The neck has to be just right, not to short and not too long, so you get a beautiful extension in the turns. The front end is also of primary importance; a great reiner has to be light on its feet so it can lope gracefully and crossover properly in the turns. Finally, the knees, a great reining horse has to have knees that are able to break over and not lock up in the stops. Second – Athleticism. A great reiner has to have exceptional athleticism. This is more important than perfect confirmation. You would be surprised how a really athletic horse can make up for any deficiency in confirmation. Take a look at all of the champion reining horses starting with Boomernic, they all have one thing in common; they are extremely athletic. When they stop they assume the position and use their front end to get every foot out of that stop, when they turn if you blink your eye you will miss it, and when they run the big fast

Nic it in the Bud

the Stallions of Silver Spurs Boomernic is the King of the ranch. His stall is situated so that he can see everything that is going on. Boomernic is extremely loyal to Michelle and he waits for her to arrive because he knows that she is going to run over to his stall to give him his morning hug. One morning as Michelle was getting out of her car a groom was walking Spooks to his turnout paddock and Michelle went over to say hello to him, I told her, “You better not, Boomernic is not going to like it, say hi to Boomernic first!” She did not heed my warning and went over to Spooks, well Boomernic started rearing up and screaming in his stall and would not let up until Michelle ran over to him. Conquistador Whiz is all business. He never does anything half way. When goes to his turnout he is a blur of motion he is so athletic. When he swims he has to swim so fast his head and neck are completely out of the water. In the breeding barn the tease mares hate him because he is so rough with them but here is the thing, as soon as Michelle takes the lead rope from her assistant to collect him CW changes instantly – he becomes completely subservient to Michelle. It is the same thing when you ride him, CW has all this raw power but he lets you direct him where to channel it. He gets completely in sync with you. I will tell you this, I do not care what horse you have ever seen or ridden – you haven’t stopped until you have stopped on Conquistador Whiz, it is truly the thrill of a lifetime, smooth as glass and as powerful as an Arizona microburst. Spooks Gotta Gun is the social butterfly of the ranch. Spooks just loves being around people. As soon as you go to his stall he will give you that big smile of his and nuzzle up to you. The more people that are around him the better he likes it. I will never forget when I rode Spooks around the arena at last year’s High Rollers Classic in Las Vegas to open the Spooks Gotta Gun Futurity Shoot Out. As soon as we walked into the arena and Spooks saw the lights, banners, judges and the people Spooks became a different horse, no smiles for Spooks now – it was show time and Spooks Gotta Gun was locked and loaded! The idea was for me to lope him around a couple of laps wave my hat make him turn and lope out, but Spooks thought it was time to bring home a check! I had seen films of Andrea showing him and watched Brett train him, but I had only loped him around for fun; I swallowed hard and we walked to the middle. As we stopped I felt this vibration in his front legs, he was waiting for me to give him his cue so I swallowed hard again put my hand forward squeezed him on the left side and we were off in a big fast to the right that felt to me like we had broken the sound barrier. We did two circles to the right and then I transitioned him into a small slow, stopped in the middle did four ½ spins to the right so I was facing the gate and got the heck out of there! I am sure I looked like a pig on roller skates but the crowd must have liked the way Spooks looked because we sold a bunch of breedings to him at our stalls later on.

Nic It In The Bud is the perfect gentleman. He is always happy to see you and loves to work. He is such a push button reiner that sometimes I just tie my reins in a knot put them over the horn and work him completely with my legs and seat. He loves doing that for a while but then he starts lifting his head looking for the cow. Since we do not have any cows at Silver Spurs I bought a fancy mechanical cow for him to work with and he loves it. While he is clearly his own person you can see so many similarities between Bud and his half older brother Boomernic. Finest China Rose – has more heart and raw talent than any horse I have ever seen. You see that long lush beautiful mane of his; well that’s China’s heart on the outside. A lot of people ask me, “If China is as talented as you say, why hasn’t he won a ton in the show pen?” Well, without going into all the details, China’s career as an open horse was cut short because of he got colitis and five feet of his large intestine had to be removed. It took over a year for him to recover and it took its toll. He would never compete as an open horse, but China loves to compete and he is Michelle’s favorite non-pro horse. Together they have won a bunch of competitions. Now you know why there is a heart in our logo – it is for our precious China Rose.


“It takes a lifetime to build a good reputation, but you can lose it in a minute.”

they are hauling and kicking up ground five rows into the stands. These are the horses that make reining electrifying. Third – Attitude. You need the first two for sure but they aren’t worth a thing without the right attitude. If you horse isn’t willing it isn’t going to happen. Sometimes I wonder how much of what we call athleticism is truly the athletic skill of the horse or is it really his/her desire or willingness to perform. Nothing gets me more excited than to see a horse go into the show pen with that eye-ofthe–tiger raw look of determination in its eyes and nothing breaks my heart more than to see a horse that you know can do it but just does not have the heart or fights the rider at every maneuver. It’s really hard to get a horse with all three ingredients, but now that I think about it I just described Boomernic, Conquistador Whiz, Spooks Gotta Gun, Nic It In The Bud, and Finest China Rose! What’s the key to success? It’s a long hard road to the winners circle and sometimes when it comes to the show pen, as an owner for the first four years if it were not for bad luck I would have no luck at all! There are so many factors that go into the making of a champion. Having a great horse is not the first step – recognizing you have a great horse is the first step. Having a talented and experienced trainer is the most important factor in my opinion. Horses are not all the same so a trainer can’t train them the same. Conquistador Whiz offspring for example sometimes get the reputation for being difficult to train, they are not difficult they are extremely intelligent and athletic. Because of that they are challenging to train, therefore the trainer must have the talent and experience to understand what makes a horse like this tick and adopt his/her training techniques to bring the talent out of the horse. Persistence ranks next – Persistence in the show pen. In order to win you have got to constantly be in the show pen. The pros show on average twice a month. It doesn’t matter where as long as they are in the pen. This way, when they bring their prospects into a major event they know exactly what to expect from the horse and for the horse it’s a walk in the park. Patience ranks next. Horses progress at their own rate and knowing how fast you can progress that horse safely is key to the horses overall success. Pushing too hard can ruin a great horse. Owners and trainers, owners particularly, must realize that not all horses are going to mature fast enough to make it to the futurity and remember that there is a long career in the derby’s and open’s for their horse. Sweat, a lot of sweat. If a trainer or rider is not going to put the time into the horse to make the horse the best that it can be 2011 ~ Rein Anniversary

taking into consideration all of the above, don’t bother going into the show pen or having your trainer enter the prospect because it will be a waste of time. Money. There is an old joke about a young fellow that asks an old rancher how to make a little bit of money with horses. The rancher tells him – start with a lot of money. It does not matter if you are buying a horse and taking lessons to be a non-pro rider or if you are buying a prospect to put with a trainer to have it compete in the majors. This sport costs money and it is imperative that a person understand the costs and the risks involved before embarking on the journey. It can be glorious or it can be the trail of tears. Always remember, it costs more and takes longer, and if you are in this sport just for the money you are better off calculating all the money you were planning on spending, going to a casino and putting it all on red – your chances of winning are much better! What do you believe is the future of reining? I believe it is time that reining becomes a spectator sport. To make sure this happens I have stated a new organization called the World Reining League (WRL). The WRL will be sanctioned by and work very closely with the NRHA to promote the sport of reining. Without going into all of the details the WRL will put on competitions that will in essence be a rock concert wrapped around reining competition. The format of the competitions will be two teams each consisting of four of the best riders competing in a shootout format. The entire show will be an entertainment production with lots of excitement in between rides, cheerleaders, light shows, etc. At the end of the competition there will be a full concert by a headliner rock band. We will hold these competitions all over the US and Europe in venues that have a minimum of approximately 10,000 seats. Our first show will be on January 21st at the Oklahoma State Fairgrounds. The WRL will introduce reining to a whole new group of people that never even heard of reining before; promote the sport and the NRHA. My goal is to double the membership of the NRHA within three years.


Silver Spurs, A Winning Legacy

Silver Spurs Equine has grown very rapidly and has established itself as the leader of the reining horse industry and the growth of the NRHA. Here is a chronology of how Silver Spurs has led the growth of the reining industry:

In 2006 Silver Spurs begins its breeding program to create the most elite line of American Quarter horses in the world by purchasing the 12th NRHA Million Dollar sire Boomernic. Boomernic, a son of an NRHA Million Dollar Sire, changed the style of reining in one night to what we enjoy today when he and Silver Spurs Director of Training, Brett Stone won the 1992 NRHA Futurity by the widest margin in Futurity history. The Quarter Horse news reported the event as “The Boom Heard Around The World.” 2008 Silver Spurs purchases the stallion that brought home the gold medal in the 2002 WEG (the inaugural year for reining as a WEG event) – the fabulous Conquistador Whiz. December 2008, the height of the recession, at the NRHA two-year-old Prospect Sale held in Oklahoma City a two-yearold colt sired by the Million Dollar Sire, Boomernic - owned by Silver Spurs sold for the highest price in NRHA history to a European Syndicate - $240,000 proving that Silver Spurs is a world class breeder. The previous record set in 2005 was $167,000. In December 2009 at the NRHA two-yearold Prospect Sale held in Oklahoma City a two-year-old colt sired by Conquistador Whiz sells for that sale’s second highest price of over $100,000 The 2nd highest money winning horse in NRHA History is KR LiL Conquistador (“KR”), winning over $415,000 in NRHA Competition. KR was sired by Conquistador Whiz. Previously, the highest money winning horse was Commanders Nic who has won over $259,000. Commander’s Nic was sired by Boomernic, and was out of a daughter of the stallion Docs Fritzie Command, also owned by Silver Spurs. In April 2010 Boom Shernic a colt sired by Boomernic was the Champion of the 13th annual NRBC and was the Reserve Champion of the NRHA Derby. A Boomernic colt won the first running of the NRBC and 13 years later a colt sired by Boomernic is the Champion, establishing Boomernic as a sire with one of the longest breeding carriers of champions in the reining industry. In May 2010 Silver Spurs purchased Spooks Gotta Gun, a breeding favorite with both the American Paint Horse Association and the National Reining Horse Association. Throughout 2010 Silver Spurs has contributed more money sponsoring NRHA reining events and supporting various


reining organizations to promote the sport of reining and to increase the purses for the riders than any other private organization. Silver Spurs has not only extended its hand of friendship to American reining events and organizations it has reached across the Pacific sponsoring the reining and cutting finals at Australia’s 2010 Equitana, the largest equine expo on the continent. In December 2010 Spooks Gotta Whiz sired by Spooks Gotta Gun, becomes the Champion of the 2010 NRHA Futurity and Lighten Up Conquistador sired by Conquistador Whiz becomes the Champion of the 2010 NRHA Non-Pro Futurity and Quistador sired by Conquistador Whiz places 3rd in the Open Division of the Futurity. In 2010, for the first time in reining history, all of the major NRHA and NRBC events were championed by the offspring of a single stallion owner – Silver Spurs Equine. In December 2010 Silver Spurs becomes a Corporate Partner of the NRHA. In December 2010 Conquistador Whiz, becomes a Million Dollar Sire. Conquistador Whiz is the first third generation million dollar sire in NRHA history. In January 2011 Silver Spurs purchased Nic It In The Bud (“Bud”). Bud’s purchase firmly establishes Silver Spurs as the largest single owner of NRHA breeding stallions in the world. In addition, Nic It In The Bud is one of only two stallions in the world that can become an NRHA Million Dollar Sire and a NRCHA (National Reined Cow Horse Association) Million

Dollar Sire; providing Silver Spurs with a strong foothold in the Working Cow Horse industry. January 2011, to continue its sponsorship and lead in the growth of the reining industry, Silver Spurs signs a contract with Brumley Management to become the Presenting Sponsor of three major NRHA sanctioned events. February 2011, to further its participation in the growth of the NRHA, Silver Spurs signs a contract with the NRHA to completely fund the NRHA Rookie of the Year Award (which will now be known as the Silver Spurs Rookie of the Year Award). In addition, Silver Spurs becomes the Founding Sponsor of the NRHA Non-Pro Derby Shootout to be held annually commencing with the 2011 NRHA Futurity. February 2011, Silver Spurs becomes a Corporate Partner of the NRCHA. February 2011, Silver Spurs signs a contract with NRHA Australia to be the presenting sponsor of the 2011 Australian Futurity and become the Founding Sponsor of the NRHA Australian Derby. February 2011 Silver Spurs becomes a Platinum Sponsor of the NRHA European Futurity. In June 2011 Silver Spurs will perform another industry first. It will send one of its prize stallions, Haboomamatada, sired by Boomernic and out of a daughter one of the cutting industries most famous stallions, Smart Little Lena to Australia to breed to their mares for the purpose of elevating the level of both reining and cutting competition in Australia.

“There will never be a time when the old horse is not superior to any auto ever made.”

Photo credit: Equine Eye Photography

A Horse of a Different Color! Blazing Colours Farms Thoroughbred stallion, SATO, selected as a Breyer Model

“Of course I would!” was the answer April Wayenberg, of Blazing Colours Farm in Wellandport, Ontario, Canada, gave to Breyer when they asked her if they could make her stallion, Sato, into a Breyer model. “Breyer receives thousands of applicants from people letting them know who should be the next Breyer model.” “We were fascinated by Sato, as a stallion of such stunning color and conformation,” says Kathleen Fallon, Vice President of Communications at Reeves International. “We thought he would make a beautiful model ~ and he did.” Sato was chosen to be a Breyer model because of his extremely rare color genetics in the Thoroughbred breed and overwhelming beauty. He was the first palomino and white Paint Thoroughbred foaled in the world. Palomino and white Paint Thoroughbreds that are colored just like Sato are still extremely rare, with perhaps five in the world now.

compete in eventing, dressage, and hunter-jumper disciplines. Breyer is always collecting ideas for models that can represent horses from film or literature, real horse champions, or exemplary breed standards. Sato is a favorite at Blazing Colours Farm, where he has lived for the past seven years. Wayenberg purchased the horse as a breeding prospect in 2004. “Sato has been a breeding stallion for several years,” says Wayenburg, “so he can be quite vocal around other horses trying to find the ladies and get their attention. “And” she says, Sato is a sweet and gentle stallion that adores being brushed and fussed over. He would rather hang his head out his window for attention rather than eat his dinner. Sato has a stall at the end of the barn where he can see everyone as they come and go. He is one of the kings on the farm and he knows it!” When asked if Sato is still available for

“The first time I saw the Sato model in a store it was at the Kentucky Horse Park gift shop. It gave me goose bumps! There were four models on each side of the table. On the left there was Sato, Secretariat model on the bottom, and to the right there was Zenyatta and Rachel Alexandra... I was speechless to see my Sato in the company of such amazing horses.”

~ April Wayenberg

Compared to the nearly 2.5 million Thoroughbreds that have been registered since 1873, when the first volume of The American Stud book was published, Sato’s rarity becomes apparent. In the spring of 2010, the stallion’s unique color pattern caught the attention of Reeves International, the parent company of Breyer. Known for producing foals of the sabino coat pattern, a trait uncommon among Thoroughbreds, Sato has gained recognition in the Thoroughbred industry. His foals inherit his 10+ temperament and have gone on to

breeding Wayenberg said, “Sato has earned himself a full retirement on the farm and his three-yearold son, Simba Twist, will be taking over Sato’s breeding duties.” Simba Twist combines the rare, and sought after, Twist jumper blood with the conformation, temperament and unique color of Sato. A combination that cannot be found anywhere in the world. “I am very excited about his future as a sport horse. Simba Twist is a gorgeous buckskin and white sabino stallion and comes from the same lines as Gem Twist. And maybe Simba will join his sire, Sato, as a Breyer model in the future.”

Sato has proven to be a fabulous producer of hunter and jumpers and his owner, April Wayenberg, rides and trains several of them. “These horses are bred for their athletic ability, conformation and movement with the unique color being an added bonus. Sato has been an outstanding producer and his foals inherit his 10+ temperament, correct conformation, brawn and brilliance.” Sato’s offspring have been sold across the United States from New Jersey, South Carolina, Nevada, Arizona, California, and a few have remained in Canada. Sato’s other notable press recognition is that he was included in worldrenowned equine photographer Barbara Livingston’s book titled Horses in Living Colour. There are several photographs of Sato in the book as well as some of his offspring. “Sato so easy-going, just a good guy,” Wayenberg said of her horse. “He is the type of horse that young girls dream of and is really a once in a life time horse. He always brings a smile to the face of people who meet him.”

How Breyer Models Are Made Back in 1950, the Breyer Molding Company was very busy making a wide variety of plastic parts for other companies and the US government. The parts were used in products like airplanes, TVs, radios, and swing clocks, just to name a few. One of their clients, MasterCrafter Clock Company, asked them to mold a plastic horse to decorate a mantel clock. The result? Number 57, The Western Horse, Breyer’s first model horse. After the models were produced for the clock, MasterCrafter gave the metal mold to Breyer in lieu of payment. At the same time, toy and horse collectors across the country had heard of the horse’s remarkable authenticity and demand grew rapidly. And the rest, as they say, is history. Breyer Animal Creations started there and continued to grow. Acquired by Reeves International in 1984, Breyer has built its business on one simple principle: to produce the highest quality products possible. Today they manufacture some 300 different model horses for enthusiasts around the world. Each Breyer horse is a work of art. Every single Breyer horse starts in the same place: in the imagination. A picture of a horse in the mind’s eye: A real horse or one brought to us through the magic of storytelling. Breyer’s close attention to detail and dedication to realism allow you to envision exactly


Breyer’s first model horse: #57 ~ The Western Horse

Once the model is finished, a resin casting is made. From that resin casting, a 2,000-pound steel mold is created which has two sections: a concave side and a convex side. Breyer models are made of a high quality, durable plastic, which comes in small white pellets. These pellets are put into heating vaults until they are liquefied. Then the liquid plastic is injected into the steel mold. After about a minute, the machine pulls the mold apart and the two halves of the model emerge, still hot. The halves are then placed on specially designed cooling fixtures, which have guides to hold each half in the correct position as it cools.

how the live horse looks and feels as you hold the model in your hands. Since a picture paints a thousand words, the sculptor first captures the horse’s spirit and presence, by drawing it on paper. From there, the creative process moves to the sculptor’s table, where the sculptor will sculpt a model of the horse using sculpting clay. The sculptor painstakingly captures and defines every detail from the physical aspects of bone structure, muscle tone, relative size and overall shape, to the more indefinable qualities of character and temperament.

“There is no trick to being a humorist when you have the whole government working for you.”

Tim Cox

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Every single Breyer horse starts in the same place: in the imagination. A picture of a horse in the mind’s eye... After they have cooled, matching halves are put into a bonding well. This bath washes the edges of the model with a chemical which softens the material so that the two pieces will bond. They are then pieced together and placed in a press. The press exerts pressure on the two halves to insure a true bond. Each model receives the first of a series of quality inspections. Any excess plastic is removed and each horse gets buffed, polished, and then cleaned. Then comes the fun part ~ the painting! Each individual model is handdecorated by anywhere from seven to 12 different artisans. Each artist has a particular job ~ from doing base coats and mane to finely detailed eyes. First, we start with the base or body coat. Large, handheld spray guns are used for a strong, steady stream of color. We

mix and match many different colors to get exactly what is required. Sometimes parts of the horse’s body need to be shielded from the base coat, such as with a pinto or palomino horse. The white on these models is created by protecting that area with a ‘mask’. Once the body is sprayed, details are added, such as the mane, tail, dapples, and eyes. Small air brushes or paint brushes are used for these details. After they are done being decorated, the horses are then packaged in our beautifully designed boxes. Then they are shipped all over the world to devoted collectors. In all, some 20 artisans work on each individual model horse, creating an exquisite hand-made model horse that is as individual as the real horse that inspired it.

“He made me believe I was worthless. That without him I would never be able to survive.” “I thought I was stupid.” “I felt I could never do anything right.” These are voices of abused women. Women who have never had a chance to connect, to borrow freedom, from a horse.

Women who need Betsi Bixby.

horses helping victims of violence

Betsi Bixby had seen the devastating effects of abuse during her years as a women’s ministry leader. “We do Beth Moore bible studies, and Beth is a survivor and speaks publicly about the effects years after the abuse. I discovered that many of the ladies in the group were survivors of abuse, but hadn’t told anyone. “A few years ago, my own daughter told me about being abused by a neighbor’s son when she was only five years old. Then in 2004, I married a man who had come from a childhood filled with abuse from an alcoholic step-father while growing up. I saw the devastation that abuse still reaps on that family decades later. But I didn’t put it all together until I started praying about how I was to use my horses and ranch to help others. “I’d always thought that a woman who can be assertive with a 1200 pound horse has a better chance of standing up to a 200- or 300-pound man.” In 2010, Betsi rode in a competition at a ranch that specializes in helping teens gain self-esteem. “All through the weekend there, I kept thinking that abused women needed something similar. So when I got home, I started researching equine therapy for women and found nothing. It was just an idea whose time had come!”

Freedom Horses was born.

Freedom Horses enables survivors to gain courage and confidence through interactions with hand-selected horses, increasing their horsemanship skills

“I was feeling as if nothing could help me let alone riding a horse; but it turned out to be so much more than simply riding.” and knowledge. Most important, the horse provides the client a time to relax and escape the stresses of everyday life and motivate them on their journey to success. Women are referred to Freedom Horses by a local women’s shelter. “It’s sad to say,” says Bixby, “but there are plenty of women needing to come to us. “We are also hoping that women will step up as volunteers that may not have had the courage yet to confront an abusive situation. Abuse knows no social boundaries, and often wealthy abused women are the last to speak up.’” Betsi hopes that the program shows women that someone cares. But

“I just wanted to try to express to you what an incredible experience this morning was. I have a lot of concerns or worries on me right now and seem to be more or less shutting down because of not knowing how to handle all of my problems and the constant drama. I was feeling as if nothing could help me let alone riding a horse; but it turned out to be so much more than simply riding. Tammy is an extraordinary person who immediately made me feel comfortable as she took me over and introduced me to Memphis, the sweetest, smartest horse I have ever seen, she taught me to brush him and then how to saddle and rein him, all the while tending to her own horse, Handsome ~ and he is! Tammy taught me in such a way I did not feel as if I was being taught, never correcting me in a way that might make me feel inferior. I’m not sure how she did it, but when she was finished, I could saddle and rein my own horse, which may not seem much to anyone else but to me was extraordinary, because not one time during the entire process had I thought of any of my problems! Then we began to ride. And as I listened to Tammy I found myself wanting to learn as much as i could to make it as easy on Memphis as possible. I had a true respect and trust for him that I had never had for any other animal. I’m hoping to be asked back because of the wonderful feeling I came away with and I want to thank from the bottom of my heart the people who made this possible. I have never had such an experience and certainly would love the opportunity to repeat this experience. Thank you all again, and you are on the right track with this and I feel it will benefit many.” Sarah

often they are scared to even go to a lesson. Their Freedom House advocate encourages them and sometimes provides transportation giving them that push. “But once they go to a lesson, they are so busy with their new equine friend and volunteer instructor that they forget all the ‘stuff’ and just enjoy the moment.

“I had a true respect and trust for him that I had never had for any other animal.” “They laugh ~ really laugh. And for some, it’s been a long time since they laughed hard. We don’t ask their stories. It doesn’t matter. What matters is the moment and doing something successfully and receiving lots of positive reinforcement, something they haven’t gotten a lot of. Their smiles and sometimes hugs are all the reward we need.” Betsi Bixby hopes Freedom Horses will not only help the women who have already been touched by the power of working with horses, she has a fervent prayer that Freedom Horses will shed light into this dark place. “And,” she adds, “being the eternal


optimist, I’m also praying that this program will spark the seed for a program that prevents abuse from happening in the first place. Freedom Horses is healing the wreckage that shouldn’t be occurring. Maybe someone out there will figure out how to use Freedom Horses to reach children; to reach boys and men so they never become abusers. Then we’d really have a success.

“I’d always thought that a woman who can be assertive with a 1,200- pound horse has a better chance of standing up to a 200- or 300-pound man.”

How horses can help The psychological benefits and the social benefits of riding are as important as its physical benefits. Riding involves a lot of attention and a bit of risk taking, which can help in dealing with overcoming life’s more trying times. Because riding teaches discipline and patience it can help a person improve one’s focus. Riding also fosters social skills as it often requires interacting with others, enjoying horses, and each other. The focus required during riding can help individuals deal with outside stress in their lives, as the time becomes a ‘reprieve’ from their troubles.

“An onion can make people cry, but there has never been a vegetable invented to make them laugh.”

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


How you can help?

No client will be denied access to Freedom Horses due to financial reasons. Freedom Horses operates through donations and volunteers, so your assistance to aid these women on their journey is greatly appreciated. Together we can make a difference in these lives. No matter how big or small your contribution may be, you can rest assured it will make a huge difference in the life of a survivor. Individuals may assist Freedom Horses by making financial contributions and/or material donations of needed equipment such as boots, helmets, and stable supplies. Volunteer opportunities are also available to qualified individuals.

Sponsorship Options

There are varying sponsorship levels of Freedom Horses. Donations may be made on a one-time, monthly or annually basis. If you have any questions or would like to tailor an individual plan to suit you, please contact Tammy Sronce at or 940 859 6512. Freedom Horse staff is also available to speak to your workplace, school, or organization, encouraging people to follow their dreams; perceive, believe and achieve. More information on Freedom Horses is available at

Betsi Bixby, founder of Freedom Horses

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“I like to hear a man talk about himself because then I never hear anything, but good.”

Reining 101 The b asics of intrig uing a this n popul ar dis d ciplin e

The sport of reining is one of the most prestigious equine competitions in the world. Because of it’s high degree of difficulty, it is, at times, a misunderstood sport. In the following few issues of Rein, I would like to explain a few of the basics of the sport as well as answer a few of the most commonly asked questions, and possibly even some questions from our readers.

Theory of Reining

Theory of Scoring

By NR HA Tr ainer Cal M iddlet on

Reining evolved from the early days of using horses for practical use like working cattle as well as many other jobs. Horses later were tested against one another, using these skills, but as a separate contest rather than a practical job. The idea of reining was to see which horse and rider combination could demonstrate a horses athleticism and agility without sacrificing control, as well as the horses willingness to listen, to work and to complete a task without resistance. The NRHA Rulebook states A. General. 1. To rein a horse is not only to guide him, but also to control his every movement. The best reined horse should be willingly guided or controlled with little or no apparent resistance and dictated to completely - Jim Willoughby, NRHA Hall of Fame.

A reining pattern is a series of maneuvers demonstrated in a prescribed order that we call a pattern. Each pattern starts by coming through the gate and ends when the last maneuver has been completed. A pattern usually lasts 4-5 minutes from the beginning to the end but it is not timed. Each pattern


“Plans get you into things but you’ve got to work your way out.”

is judged on how the horse completes not only do this by giving the horse an the maneuvers. The judge looks for the overall break from the act of training horse’s willingness to do the maneuvers at times, but we also do this by using and the level of resistance that the protective gear on the horses feet, legs, horse gives the rider when asked to do joints, etc. These amazing creatures will, each maneuver. The judge also looks at times, try so hard to do the right thing at the degree of difficulty attempted by once they have been trained and taught horse and rider that consists mainly of what that right thing is, that we need speed, cadence, and of course overall to protect them as best we can to keep smoothness of maneuver and whether or them safe, happy and healthy. not the horse completed each maneuver There is nothing better than seeing a as dictated by each pattern. Penalty points may be assessed for certain points horse that truly enjoys its job to the point where it goes out there and gives of emphasis and for deviating from the its all time and time again. Some horses outlined pattern as written. Reining never reach this point, just as some maneuvers consist of spins, rollbacks, people never live up to their potential. sliding stops, and circles. A contestant I believe horses and people are both is judged on whether they complete all happiest when they have worked hard required maneuvers and can be given a to reach their potential and have a sense minus or a plus on maneuvers based on of accomplishment followed by a rest how much resistance the horse showed as a reward for their hard work. Along doing the maneuver, how correct it the path of reaching this goal there are was, the cadence and smoothness as days that horses don’t like their job or well as the degree of difficulty. Each maybe don’t feel like working as hard as pattern is based on a 70 score and can they should that particular day, just as end up higher or lower with the highest do you or I. I believe people who truly score obviously being the best. For love horses know how and when to push more details on scoring please visit our through those days rather than back website at and off, because we know that by pushing I would also suggest going to www. the horse to get rid of resistance and to learn more about rules and reach its potential, we will help the scoring. horse to find true purpose and a sense of accomplishment. The basic foundation of any training program is a mutual respect between horse and rider. We start by setting limits to where horses can stand and what they can do and One large point of emphasis throughout then we move onward and upward from this sport is the importance we put on that foundation of respect. One of the the health and safety of our horses. greatest philosophers and writers of all We all love horses and we all want our time once wrote “A child without limits horses to perform at their very best. will never reach true happiness.” I believe In order to achieve a horses ultimate the same for horses. With reining, as potential, they have to be in very good well as working cowhorse, and other shape as well as in good physical and top level equine sports, we not only set sound condition. Just like people, horses limits to what horses can’t do, but we don’t perform at their best if they aren’t help them remove the resistance to show sound and well taken care of. We make them what they can do. And for this, I sure that our horses are feeling good believe that these equine athletes are and we don’t push them past their point better off for it and they live a happier of exhaustion. Horses are amazing life than standing around in a field animals and these top bred performance with no sense of purpose. It takes a horses are born for no other reason but good horseman to know when a horse to compete. Because of this, most of is thanking the rider and or owner for these well bred horses are also going to making them their best but I do believe have a lot of try and the good ones will it happens, and I believe that’s when sometimes push themselves harder than horses are truly happy. Do I know what what is actually healthy for them. With every horse is thinking and if it is happy this in mind, it is up to us as horsemen or not ? Ha, of course not. No honest /women and trainers to protect the person does. That is the age old type horse from hurting itself and to know of argument- something that neither when that point is where horses need side can prove. There are those that say a physical and or mental break. We if we care about horses we shouldn’t

Health and Wellness of Reining Horses

rider. Using abusive or unfair practices with a horse never works to achieve a level of trust, understanding and quietness that is a must have in order to be successful in reining or reined cowhorse. The overall contention expressed by a well trained reining horse is something that is impossible to achieve through abuse and aggression. Horses are unbelievably talented and through force and fear a horse can be taught certain things in a short amount of time. But to have a well trained horse that retains what you have taught him and has a willing attitude, this is something that takes time, patience and an understanding of how horses work, mentally and physically. In the next issue we will discuss protective gear, shoeing, and more.

push them to become great. There are also those of us that say that this is the exact reason we push them; to become great. Because of our commitment to the happiness and safety of our horses, there are strict rules against abuse and or neglect from any rider, owner or trainer


as well as strict rules against the use of any bits or other equipment that is used in an abusive manner, and of course, no horses can be competed on that have lamenessor soundness issues. The irony in all of this is that any true horseman or woman understands that to get a horse to a level such as reining, it is all about a mutual understanding of a horse and

I hope this gives you a little more understanding about our sport. This is the first of many articles, so I look forward to sharing with you more in the upcoming issues. In the meantime, please visit our website at www. where you can sign up for our free email list and also be sure to friend us on Facebook. If you have any questions or topics about reining that you would like to see discussed in future articles, please email me at or feel free to give me a call at 816-2569597. Let it Rein!

We can’t all be heroes because somebody has to sit on the curb and clap as they go by

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


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2011 ~ Rein Anniversary

S y s t e m

F o r

E v e r y

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Acts of God Protecting your horses from disasters

Unpredictable weather patterns and natural disasters seem to be affecting more and more areas across North America. Take tips from those who have been in the path of a storm to keep your horses safe. “During tornado watch, we put halters with ID tags on all the horses. The tags have our name, the horse’s name, and two or three phone numbers, including my sister’s number in Boston. That way if all the phone lines are down where we are, there is a contact number that shouldn’t be affected by our storms.” ~ Janice Barlow, KS “You must turn out all the horses into big pasture. Get them away from barns that could explode into bits.” ~ Mindy Cooper, TX “I make sure all our gates are open and the horses are all wearing some kind of identity tags.” ~ Brad K, LA “During hurricane warnings we spray painted my friend’s phone number on all the horses’ sides. We might not have found our mare without that number. Someone a county over found her among their herd.” ~ Laurie Stanton, FL “Be prepared with the numbers for all the vets in the area and surrounding areas. I keep leads and halters in my truck at all times because I might not find my horses, but I might find someone else’s and it’s the least we can do for one another.” ~ Jenny Button, TX

No matter where you live, or whether or not your area is commonly hit by natural disasters, train your horses to load quickly onto a trailer.


“Things ain’t what they used to be, and probably never was.”

Many people live on flood plains, tornado paths, and fault lines and don’t realize it. Even if your land hasn’t flooded in a century, never rest on your hands; have a plan in place for everything.

Flood planning

Plan far ahead for floods. When you’re grading your land, be certain you are not creating flood plains. Ensure you have driveways and paths to your barn and fields high enough to allow evacuation. Make sure your pastures have higher areas so if you do need to leave your horses, they have safe ground to get to until the flood waters recede. Storage buildings, where you keep your farm chemicals and fuel, should be built high enough to prevent them from leaking into and poisoning any feed or water. No matter where you live, or whether or not your area is commonly hit by natural disasters, train your horses to load quickly onto a trailer.

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary

and trucks that could easily help aid stranded owners and their horses? Is there a high and dry storage facility at a neighbor’s where the community could stockpile feed? It’s wise to exchange numbers with your horsey neighbors in case disaster hits when someone is not at the barn. Knowing each other’s horses is also a good way be sure that if you can’t get to your horses, someone who knows them will do their best.

Have your horses vaccinated against encephalitis and tetanus. After the flood remember that standing water and mud present health hazards to your horses including, but not limited to: • Mouldy food • Mud fever • Dangerous reptiles, • Poor footing that may cause injuries, and injuries due to trying to free themselves from mud. • Mosquito-borne disease


Before putting horses back into paddocks, carefully inspect all fencing that might have become unsafe or unsecured during a flood.

Always prepare a folder with

papers or photocopies of your horses and boarders’ horses if you have them. In the folder keep the following: • Recent pictures of the horses including shots of any markings or scars. • Vaccination information • Veterinarian contact numbers • Owners’ contact numbers if applicable • Lists of any medications

Be Neighborly

Arrange meetings to plan for disasters with local stables. Know what each barn has that could possibly help other less prepared barns. Is there a large barn with many stalls available nearby? Who has large trailers


• On the horse: Put leather halters on horses with identity tags such as luggage tags with plastic covering. Braid another tag into their mane or tail, but do not tie around the tail. Never put Coggins test information on the tag as it’s a horse’s ‘passport’ and some thieves might use that as a way to transport your horse out of the state or province. Tape a zipped baggie with any information vital to your horse’s health securely on their halter. Consider body clipping your number onto your horse or using a paint stick. If you live in an area where disasters strike often, think about freeze branding your horse.

When you leave with your horse

Having a trailer stocked with water and feed is vital for the long waits on evacuation routes. Mapping out safe alternate routes well in advance is necessary, however, do not presume you know a better way if authorities have instructed you other roads are prohibited. If you are expecting a hurricane, leave early. Hurricane Andrew tossed trailers


as though they were toys while people were in jams trying to get out of its path. Leave early. Contact your local government for temporary stabling areas and emergency shelters.

If you decide to stay

Prepare early by cleaning up your property and removing all debris that could become air born. If you plan to weather the storm at home, here are some guidelines courtesy of the State of Florida • Use common sense, taking into consideration barn structure, trees, power lines, and the condition of surrounding properties in deciding whether to keep your animal in the barn, or loose. • Remove all items from the barn aisles and walls, and store them securely. • Prepare at least two weeks’ supply of hay (wrapped in plastic or waterproof tarp) and feed (stored in plastic watertight containers). Place these supplies in the highest and driest area possible. • Take two plywood boards and spray paint on one side of each board, “HAVE ANIMALS, NEED HELP.” On the other side of each board paint, “HAVE ANIMALS, OK FOR NOW.” Put both

plywood boards with your feed supply. • Fill clean plastic garbage cans with water, secure the tops, and place them in the barn. • Prepare an emergency animal care kit (waterproof) with all the items you normally use: medications, salves, ointments, vet wraps, bandages, tape, etc. Place the kit in a safe place where you can get to it after a storm. • Have an emergency barn kit containing a chain saw and fuel, hammers, a saw, nails, screws, and fencing materials. Place this kit in a secure area before the storm hits. • Have an ample supply of flashlights and batteries, and at least one batteryoperated radio. • Using camper tie-downs, secure all vehicles, trailers and maintenance equipment. • Notify neighbors where you will be during the storm. • Before leaving the barn, attach identification to all horses. • Turn off circuit breakers to the barn before leaving. A power surge could cause sparks and fire. • Do not stay in the barn with your horse during the storm. • Place a supply of water and hay with each horse.

“Ignorance lies not in the things you don’t know, but in the things you know that ain’t so.”

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


Mastering the step-up turn-around box

By Mark Bolender Sitting in the stands at a horse show and watching the ideal trail horse step up on an elevated box, do a 360 degree turn, and then step off with precision, confidence, and on a loose rein will take your breath away. This can be you if you believe it can be done ~ and if you work on some basic skills. And not only is this beautiful to watch but it’s a very practical skill to learn for riding on a real trail. The most basic skill needed for this is trust in the horse. You must become a rider that the horse can trust, which


means the horse’s instinct directs it to regard you as someone worthy of leadership. This results in being able to drive the horse from the ground, move its haunches and fore at will, and simultaneously develop boldness and confidence. With your ‘Bolender Bubble’ clearly established and strong belief in yourself, there’s no limit to what you and your horse can accomplish. For mastering the step-up turn-around box, here’s how I start, but recognize that the process usually takes about three days, so you need some patience.

The first step begins by establishing the ‘Bolender Bubble’. The horse should move out of your space without your touching the horse. If you back up the horse should back up without you looking, touching or talking to it. This should take no more than twenty minutes, regardless of the horse. It establishes that you are Worthy of Leadership in the horse’s mind, where its instinct compels it to follow you. That’s tied to trust which will put you in a teaching role because the horse will see you as superior, causing it to follow

“There are three kinds of men. The one that learns by reading. The few who learn by observation. The rest of them have to pee on the electric fence for themselves.”

ABOVE This horse is allowed a loose rein while concentrating on the job at hand at the top of the box.

instructions while it tries to please you. The second step is to start with ground work and driving over obstacles to build boldness and confidence. I use a Scrambled Puzzle (random layers of poles) requiring the horse time to “think it through”. For the average horse, getting through training for the Bolender Bubble, poles, Scramble Puzzle, teeter totter and turn-around box takes several hours. My next step is to introduce the horse to the elevated box. I will drive the horse from the ground and allow all the time 2011 ~ Rein Anniversary

it needs to inspect the box and then step up on in. Next I ask it to step down. Most horses will jump at first but I instruct them to simply step down. This is easy and also a safety issue because when they are ridden the horse must step down. When the horse is comfortable standing and stopping in any position I want, I begin to teach it how to turn around. When it can turn around in a relaxed manner then I know it’s time to move to a tiered turn-around box. I teach this the same way from the ground. At this point you need to be bold because the horse is well above you and that can be intimidating at first. Once this skill is mastered it’s time to mount up and ride. I have never had an injury to a horse or rider while following this procedure yet I always recommend that you wear a riding helmet. At this point riders need to believe in themselves and their horses. Trust your focus and trust your horse. Start and then master the small

step up first before moving up. Don’t doubt - just walk right up. Stop and look in the direction that you want to turn and ask the horse. Don’t look down, and trust the horse to follow your focus and cues. You have already mastered moving the haunches and fore on the ground so don’t doubt. After the horse turns around a quarter turn, step down. I add a quarter turn until the horse and you are comfortable. Make soft contact on the mouth and if needed, grab the back of the saddle. Keep your position and ask the horse to drop its head, lift its back and step off. It is common to rush at first, so stop at the bottom and wait. Repeat this step until the horse will wait in any position and on a loose rein. This will lead to walking up and down on a loose rein with style and control, while being safe. In essence, learn to allow the horse time to think and to become a riding partner. Happy trails and Bolender blessings!


Scaredy Cat? scardey cat

by Heather Dilts Baiano


with files from Jane Savoie

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Chatting wit Jane Savoie Your subconscious is like a genie in a bottle, just waiting for you to give it a command.

Facing Fear

Jane Savoie, a dressage competitor, coach, instructor, clinician, speaker, and author, helps riders conquer their fears. Rein Magazine took some time to chat with Jane about common rider fears and how to conquer them to get the most out of our equestrian dreams. Rein: What is the most common fear? Jane: The most common fear can be split into two things. The first is fear of having no control and the second is fear of injury. Such fears are less likely to be found in children because they feel invincible and they heal much quicker than adult. Those riders who have had a bad experience with horses, such as a bad fall, commonly display one of the above issues. Adults who have been away from riding for many years are often shocked to find themselves afraid. They don’t know why they feel that way, perhaps because they are more aware of what can happen. Rein: What is fear based on? Jane: Riding is a microcosm. It is a reflection of your life. If you have other worries or issues in ‘everyday’ life, they will show up in your riding. Since everyone has different problems, no one will have the same riding issues. Rein: Is fear necessary? Jane: Fear is actually necessary so one should pay attention to it. It keeps us sensible and safe, aware of the horse, its power and our surroundings. Fear makes us cautious, which is good, or else we would take unnecessary risks that may lead to injury. It helps us make the logical choice, and so, take note of fear but don’t let it rule you.

Rein: If one has fears, such as mounting, or jumping, or speed, what can we do? Jane: This is a large topic as there are many different things you can do. Always use a safe and quiet schoolmaster horse and have another person with you at all times. This will insure you will build confidence and stay safe. One recommended technique is ‘Advance and Retreat.’ We will take the fear of mounting as an example. To start, just drive to the barn and watch the horses (you may not even get out of the car). Do that for as many days as it takes to become boring, or until you feel comfortable. Next, go and walk into the barn, nothing else. Again, repeat this action until you are comfortable or bored. The following steps would be to go to the barn and open the stall door of the school horse, and then pet the horse, halter and take out the horse; groom, tack up, and finally take the horse to the block. It is important to do each tiny step until you are totally comfortable. Remember that everything is done in baby steps. Rein: Why go through so many “Baby Steps”? Jane: You must reprogram your subconsciousness. Baby steps program your mental state. Even though you can consciously say, “I can,” your consciousness is telling you something

and your subconscious is actually what you do. You can reprogram by using vivid visualization and positive self talk. With visualization, you fill in all details, even the small ones. Use all your senses, sight, smell, touch, what you hear, and even emotions. For example if you think of yourself galloping, feel the exhilaration of speed, feel the wind in your face, and hear the hoof beats. Think of every detail, the green in the grass, the leaves waving in the trees, the smell of country air and fresh wildflowers. Stay as relaxed as you can. Positive self talk is just that. Use present tense and positive wording. Using present tense is important. Also, in your mind there is no picture for ‘Not.’ The mind skips over that word, so avoid using the word ‘Not’ in your talk. For example, instead of saying “ I will not be afraid to go fast,” say, “I love to go fast.” Your subconscious is like a genie in a bottle, just waiting for you to give it a command. Rein: Do you believe in “If you fall, get back on”? Jane: To an extent that saying is true. Of course if you are injured, you can’t get back on but if you are just bruised it is better to just get on and be lead around. This is because action cures fear. By avoiding something that you fear, it allows the fear to grow. Once you get back on the horse, that action causes the fear to stop and to shrink.

Fear grips many riders. Stopping them from experiencing the joy of riding. Whether the fear stems from a riding accident, or returning to riding after years with a body that doesn’t respond as we would like, Rein Magazine asked Dr. Janet Sasson Edgette and Jane Savoie to help us all get back in the saddle.

Facing Fear continued

Chatting with Dr Janet Edgette Don’t argue with what you feel; it’s disrespectful to yourself. You don’t have to like how you feel, but you can’t excise it without great cost to your emotional health. lower? ~ Trot only and no cantering until you feel ready? A fearful rider has to believe that if ‘the bad thing’ happens (miss a distance, get run away with) that she can manage it. Otherwise that rider is riding looking over her shoulder with her heart in their throat. That is no way to become more competent and confident. So if, for example, she fell off because her seat was not deep enough, then exercises to deepen the seat so she can stick on a horse that spooks ~ because you can never promise a rider that the horse won’t spook.

Rein Magazine: Briefly, what is fear? Is it chemical flight reaction that is rooted in our being? Dr. Janet Sasson Edgette: I consider fear to be our genuine, unadulterated response to a situation we find threatening to our physical or psychological safety and/or well-being. Rein: Are we destined to fight our fear forever? Dr. Edgette: We will as long as we continue to be put into, or place ourselves into, situations that are either dangerous or perceived as dangerous in some way. It doesn’t matter whether it’s real or not ~ the person feels frightened and cannot be talked out of it. Rein: What is the most common fear for riders? (falling? Not being able to be in control? The unknown?)Dr. Edgette: There are several fears: Fear of getting hurt ~ either from falling off, crashing into the jump (missed distance or otherwise), being run away with. Anxiety over feeling/being overfaced (jumps too big; asked to canter when don’t feel ready, told to get back on horse you don’t feel you can handle). Again, it doesn’t matter whether the person is truly over-faced or just thinks she is; it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks ~ if she feels over-faced, then she is, because confidence is a part of this too. So even though she did that course or rode that horse last Tuesday, and physically or skill-wise could conceivably do it again, she won’t be able to access those abilities in a coordinated manner under her current psychological condition. Attempts to muscle past that inevitably end in more anxiety. more problems, or a rider who doesn’t want to go to the barn anymore. Anxiety about doing poorly and embarrassing oneself, embarrassing


one’s trainer, not proving oneself to be ‘worthy’ of the horse, disappointing one’s parents/spouse. Rein: What is the best way for a rider to overcome fear? Dr. Edgette: Stop. Regroup. Figure out what the fear or anxiety is about. Redefine yourself: you’re not a ‘baby,’ ‘chicken,’ or ‘fairweather rider,’ but someone who experienced, or is worried about experiencing, something harmful or dangerous. Don’t argue with what you feel; it’s disrespectful to yourself. You don’t have to like how you feel, but you can’t excise it without great cost to your emotional health. Fearful riders need to back off from doing the thing that is frightening them. No one gets better at riding while being scared. If you are afraid, figure out under what conditions would you feel comfortable riding again. For instance: ~ Same horse but on a lunge line? ~ In the ring but different horse? ~ Same everything but three inches

Rein: How long is the average time it takes to overcome fear? Dr. Edgette: Average not a relevant term here. Some people feel better as soon as they realize they are not crazy for feeling the way they do. Getting over the fear or anxiety happens when the person does not have to worry about whether or not X or Y or Z will happen. Instead they think, “If X or Y or Z happens, then I will be able to handle it.” Rein: Can we ever truly conquer our fear or are we simply learning tricks to get around it? Dr. Edgette: I don’t believe you can or should try to conquer fear; it’s to be respected. It’s there for a reason. It’s saying, “Whoa, this does not feel safe.” Why would anybody want to ignore that? I do not believe in tricks for dealing with emotions, even (especially) the ones we don’t like. Rein: What advice would you give someone who has suffered a horrific fall but wants to continue to ride? Dr. Edgette: I’d say, “Great, but you will need to be patient with, and kind toward, yourself.” I’d recommend they ride at a level at which they feel NO anxiety, and build from there, waiting until they feel hungry for the next step.

“If you want to be successful, it’s simple; know what you’re doing, love what you are doing, and believe in what you’re doing.”

Rein: Do you have any exercises we could share with our readers? Dr. Edgette: Exercises without context are not something I subscribe to; intervention becomes mechanistic and impersonal, and largely ineffective. I do not use relaxation techniques, affirmations, or visualization strategies. My objective is to influence change in a person’s perspective, program, attitude toward herself, appreciation of the effect the event has had on her, or relationship with her trainer and/or horse, among other things. Jane Savoie has been a member of the United States Equestrian Team and has competed for the US in Canada, Holland, Belgium, France, and Germany. She was the reserve rider for the Bronze medal winning Olympic dressage team in Barcelona, Spain and has been long-listed by the USET with several horses and has won nine Horse of the Year awards and three National Freestyle Championships. Ms. Savoie is also well-known as a coach, writer, and speaker. She was the 1996 and 2004 Olympic dressage coach for the Canadian Three-Day Event Team in Atlanta and Athens. She also coached several top dressage and Three-Day Event riders in their preparations for the 2000 Olympics and while in Sydney she helped rider Susan Blinks secure a bronze medal for the US dressage team. Ms. Savoie has written five books that have been published both in the US and abroad. Her best-selling sports psychology book That Winning Feeling! is in its ninth printing and has been translated into several languages. Her dressage training books, Cross-Train Your Horse and More Cross-Training, are rapidly becoming popular reference books for riders and trainers in all disciplines. Her fourth book, It’s Not Just About The Ribbons, is a sequel to That Winning Feeling! This book is an essential addition to your library if you need help with negative emotions like overcoming rider fear, impatience, or lack of self-confidence. Jane’s newest book, A Winning Attitude, has hit the shelves!


Dr. Janet Sasson Edgette is a renowned psychologist, author, consultant, and speaker with offices in Exton, PA. For twenty years, she has been conducting adolescent, child, and family therapy, and consultation to individuals, couples, parents, athletes, and professionals in the performing arts. Janet is the author of Adolescent Therapy That Works: Helping Kids Who Never Asked for Your Help in the First Place, and Stop Negotiating With Your Teen: Strategies for Parenting Your Angry, Manipulative, Moody, or Depressed Adolescent. Janet has taught workshops in dozens of U.S. cities and abroad, and is frequently invited to speak to mental health professionals, educators, and parents about counseling, educating, and raising adolescents. In addition to her work with adolescents and their families, Janet has virtually pioneered the application of performance enhancement in the equestrian industry. For eight years, she wrote a monthly column on sport psychology for Practical Horseman, and served as their sport psychology consultant. Blending her clinical and performance expertise, Janet wrote the ground-breaking book entitled Heads Up! Practical Sports Psychology for Riders, Their Families, and Their Trainers (Doubleday), that advanced this still-maturing field past the limiting traditions of relaxation and imagery work. Her newest book, The Rider’s Edge: Overcoming the Psychological Challenges of Riding (Primedia Inc.), is a collection of essays about the broader experience of owning and riding horses. Janet is a high-level competitor in show jumping and trains several times a week. She regularly meets with athletes from all individual sports, as well as with professional and amateur musicians, vocalists, and other performing artists, in order to help them manage show time nerves and perform well in spite of them. “Being a hero is about the shortest-lived profession on Earth.”

Saddle up! The Royal’s Coming. Photo: Ben Radvanyi

NOVEMBER 4th- 13th, 2011

Tickets now available at or by calling 416-872-7777

Join us for our 89th spectacular season, featuring The Royal Horse Show – Canada’s premier indoor horse show, the world-famous Royal Agricultural Show, plus fun-for-all-ages attractions like the amazing President’s Choice® SuperDogs and the Family Fun Zone.

Wine, dine, snack and sample. Learn about the latest in healthy eating and eco-friendly practices. Don’t miss a great opportunity for some one-of-kind Holiday shopping. And if you’ve got kids, our little ones would love to meet yours! For program details, ticket information and video highlights, please visit


“When you’re through learning, you’re through.”

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


Disclaimer: The advice given in these responses does not replace advice given by your own horse. There is no warranty or liability assumed. These responses are for entertainment purposes only.

Outside, The Dark, and Treats


: Dear Fringe, Do horses prefer to be inside in a stall or out 24/7? Don’t horses get cold? : First, is this stall filled with hay

and grain? And are my friends there? If my friends are all there, and I’ve got lots to eat and maybe something to do, like a thing to knock around (hanging balls, water bucket, etc.) it’s okay. Of course we get cold, but we don’t feel the weather like you do. Nothing more fun than standing out in a driving rain watching your faces in the window thinking we’re nuts. Our coats actually raise and lower to allow air to help to warm us up. Make sure we have plenty of hay for energy to help us generate heat. Some horses like to be inside at night, and many like to be outside. We’re not all the same, kind of like you guys!



: Dear Fringe, Why does my horse freak when I bring him into a dark barn? : The boogey man! There might be scary things like deer, mailboxes, or bush monsters! But really, it’s because horses adjust to changes in light slower than humans do. Once we adjust, though, we can see better than you. So, trust us when we tell you there’s something spooky in the corner of that wash bay!


: Dear Fringe, A girl at my barn says it’s not good to give treats to horses, why not? : WHAT? What’s her name and number? She better not pull that with me! Well, truthfully, sometimes treats

can be a bad thing. Some horses have sensitive systems and can’t take the sugar of carrots or apples. Sometimes horses who are hand fed can get nippy. Not that I would of course. But if you give treats now and then, make sure you break up carrots and apples. Choking from overexuberant carrot consumption is not pretty.

“The only difference between death and taxes is that death doesn’t get worse every time Congress meets.”

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2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


Winterize Your Trailer Before Winter Gets Here

By Janet Shaffer, Lazy B Trailer Sales, Inc.

Now that summer is over and the temperatures are starting to drop, it is time to get your living quarters (LQ) trailer ready for winter. If you live in an area where the temperatures rarely dip below freezing, you may not need a complete winterization, but Danny Westbrook, Service Manager and CoOwner of Lazy B Trailer Sales, Inc. still recommends sticking to a regular service schedule to lessen the likelihood of surprise problems. “Proper winterizing is important to avoid problems down the road,” says Westbrook. “It is not a hard process, but each step needs to be done right.” You can winterize your own trailer, but it is best to have a factory-authorized service center handle preparing the water system—failure to winterize properly, or missing essential portions of the procedure could mean broken pipes later. It could also lessen the lifespan of the trailer. If you are going to be storing your LQ trailer for the winter, here is a list of things to do: INSIDE THE TRAILER • Empty and flush out all of your holding tanks at the nearest dump station. • Clean the sinks and toilet. • Take the trailer to an authorized service center to have the water system properly winterized. • Clean the living quarters area of the


• • • • • •

trailer and remove all perishable food items. If you do not want to remove canned goods from the trailer, store them in the refrigerator to insulate them from the cold. You can leave non-perishables in the cupboards. Defrost and clean the refrigerator. Put an open box of baking soda inside to absorb odors. Clean the oven, stove top, and microwave. Turn off the pilot light and the propane. Fill the propane tanks so they’re ready for your next trip. Make sure all appliances are electrical switches are turned off. Leave drawers, doors, and cabinets open to air out. Close all blinds and curtains. You can protect them from fading by placing foil or paper between the windows and the screens. Clean the horse area of the trailer. Remove hay and horse feed so they do not mold or attract pests.

OUTSIDE THE TRAILER • Park the trailer on a solid, level surface. • Wash and wax the exterior of the trailer. • Make sure all windows, doors, and vents are closed and secure. • Cover any vents for appliances to prevent bugs or moisture from

• •

getting into the trailer. Check the tire pressures. Cover the tires if the trailer will be stored outside. If you have a generator, check the oil and change the filter, if needed.

THROUGHOUT THE WINTER • Check the trailer periodically to make sure there are no leaks or condensation that can damage the interior. • Occasionally open and air out the trailer. • Check the trailer batteries and the battery water level. A stored battery will still lose its charge, even when disconnected. If the charge is 80% or less, recharge the batteries. You may want to remove the batteries from the trailer and store them in a heated area. • If snow accumulates on the trailer, remove it as often as you can. This may not be a complete list of winter preparations for your living quarters trailer. Consult your owner's manual and talk to a reputable dealer to see which steps are necessary ~ there may be special requirements for storage in your geographic area. If you take the time to do things right, it will easy to get back in the groove once the weather warms up.

“Some people try to turn back their odometers. Not me, I want people to know ‘why’ I look this way. I’ve traveled a long way and some of the roads weren’t paved.”

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


Whether it’s your horse’s health, your sense of wellbeing, or you are no longer enjoying your boarding barn, sometimes it’s time to look for greener pastures. But before you hitch up the and pack your gear in the truck, make that sure you’re off to a place that will suit you and your horse.

When Virginia moved her horse, Cowboy, into the barn five years ago, it was perfect. “They had everything I was looking for; trails nearby, great care, outdoor arena with equipment, and several people to ride with.” Virginia never believed she’d move her horse. “But then things changed,” she says. “The owners went through a divorce and it seemed like the owners took out their anger on all the boarders.” Many of the other boarders moved out. Virginia was greeted by a virtual ghost barn when she’d ride. “I was alone, and then I realized that I enjoyed being alone better than facing the barn owners. I never knew what kind of mood they’d be in, or whether I’d be blamed for some stupid thing. “It was hard, but I admitted finally, it was time to go.”

Make your checklist Before you decide to leave ask yourself what is wrong with the barn you currently board and what you’d like in the new barn. • Do you want all-day turnout? • Indoor/outdoor arenas? • Fewer boarders? • More boarders? • Lessons? • Training? • Events? • Clinics? • Better feed programs? • More flexibility for bringing in outside trainers or coaches? • Do you want to be on show teams? • Do you want less drama? You do know what you want for your well-being, now think about what would be best for your horse. Ensure there is proper care at any facility you choose. Your horse’s health needs to be paramount. Take some time to interview the prospective barn owner and manager and they should also interview you. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. “Often many prospective boarders fail to ask me things, so I prompt them,” say Randy Mason, a veteran barn owner. “It’s important for me to spend some time with them to make sure they’ll fit in with our group. I want to make certain that they are happy, but that they don’t create havoc for my long-time boarders.

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Ensure there is proper care at any facility you choose. Your horse’s health needs to be paramount. “Then, if possible, I like to ask to meet their horse. If I can’t do that, I just pepper a few questions about goals, problems, and antics they might like to tell me about their horse,” Randy laughs, “You’d be surprised what you can learn about a horse and an owner when they get to laughing. One owner admitted that she was leaving because her mare bit all the other horses and couldn’t get turned out with the herd.” Randy couldn’t accept her as a boarder. “Which was sad, because the lady was as nice as can be. She just had a bad-mannered, dunder-headed horse.” Randy also says that if the boarder had been willing to get some training for the mare he might have considered taking them on, but the owner thought the other owners were being petty and, “That didn’t sit right with me.” The Tour When you are getting the grand tour of a stable, pay special attention to your


gut feelings. Do you feel at ease or does the management of the barn rub you the wrong way. Some owners want a more relaxed environment and seeing all tools in their places with labels gives them pause, other, more fastidious owners would feel comfortable with everything in its place. Be sure to ask your stable owner if there are any special rules. The basics such as, ‘Leave the place as you found it,’ and no smoking or drinking in the barn are natural expectations, but if the barn owners live on the property, perhaps they don’t want you driving in, lights glaring and radio blasting to use the indoor arena after ten at night. Ask. If moving barns is an ordeal for you, consider taking lessons at the barn before you move to make sure you still feel comfortable in the surroundings. Take time to speak to other boarders if you can, and ask a few other horse owners in the area if they have heard anything untoward about the barn. Be careful

though, gossip runs rampant in the horse industry and consider the source you hear anything negative from. When you are at the stable, pay attention to how the horses there act. Are they high strung? Do they look relaxed and playful? Some barns instantly help horses to relax while others keep all the horses on high alert, which can make for dangerous situations. Randy also suggests for owners who are not ‘horsemen’ to board with those who are. “You should be able to call on the stable owner for help if you need it.” He admits to hearing of too many ‘gentlemen farmers’ who have a property and take the laissez faire attitude to boarders and expect that owners know how to train and care for their horses. “Often, in boarding situations, owners look to the stable owner or manager to help them out. “Often, though, the owners then find themselves treating barn owners as authority figures and power can make heads swell,” says Randy. “Everyone needs to remember that their boarders are their customers and treat them professionally. And,” he adds, “be ready to say good bye to good boarders and ask the sour ones to go before the whole bushel of boarders is ruined.” Finding a boarding barn, or leaving one for another, doesn’t have to be a traumatic event. Not all people, situations, and/or facilities mesh well and at times moving apart might keep the friendships you had with your barn owners and boarders from being strained.

“Most men are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

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2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


“Slow Feeding” What’s that all about? Well, it’s quite simple really: it’s either a net or a grid system that you would place over your hay. The net or grid has holes that are fairly small, usually just less than two inches square. There are many different styles and sizes to fit all kinds of feeding needs, whether you feed big rounds or flakes of hay. Slow-feeding is definitely the best solution for feeding grazing animals, kept in captivity. How does it work? Well it allows only small amounts of hay to be pulled out while feeding, slowing down the consumption and allowing the digestion to work the way it is designed to. Slow-feeding best imitates the grazing action for the digestive system. The benefits are huge, including health and well being of all grazing animals, but especially the feeding of the equine. Slow-feeders offer so many advantages.


Horses are grazing herbivores. They graze almost continually when left in pastured areas. The equine has a very small stomach (only 8 to 15 liters capacity) that is ideally designed for small, regular meals, as food passes through the stomach very quickly. Horses salivate only when they are chewing and eating, and under normal circumstances they produce up to 30 litres a day of saliva. Saliva is an acid buffer. Saliva neutralizes the acid in the stomach, as well as lubricates the food. The horse constantly produces stomach acid ~ even if the horse is not eating! This is the biggest concern, and where we start to see the health problems start arise; the acid now has no buffer (saliva) as he is not chewing to produce any, so you will start to see the results of that acid build up in that empty stomach presenting its self as ulcers, cribbing, colic symptoms, and other behavioral problems. We confine horses so that they

cannot have that access to grazing for many reasons, land shortage, horses in training, showing, stallions, stables, and there are many of horses that can not be turned out on the grass, as it is too rich, and can cause other problems such as founder. Just think of most of the horse keeping methods, maybe feeding two or three times a day ~ the horses are going long hours with no intake of fiber at all. These are the huge benefits for the horse, in using slow-feeders. Slowfeeders do work well, maybe not perfect, but a lot better than we have been doing for many years of modern day horse keeping. The benefits for the owners, managers and breeders is also a huge saving in feeding costs, as they are able to cut their feeding time down to once a day and some bags or round bale covers are allowing feeding times to go as long as once a month (depending on herd size)! Savings are thirty percent

“The only way to beat the lawyers is to die with nothing.”

Photo credit: Jane Mc Cormack Massaro

By Mandy Blais


take it

as no hay is wasted! Slow-feeding also eliminates the clean up time of all that rotten hay, which, in turn, is not good for hoof health. No more rushing home to feed! Yes now you can go away for the day, and the best benefit is more riding or horse time. And you know your doing the possible best for your horse living in the confinement that we put them into. Yes, it does take a bit of adjustment for the grazers to

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary

get accustomed to the use of the slow feeders, but after a week or so, if you lay out loose hay onto the ground, ninety percent of the horses will go to the slow feeder instead ~ it’s amazing! They seem to know what’s right and makes them feel good. Just use good common horse sense when using nets and bags! no loose ropes or strings that a horse could get caught up into, horses with shoes on

should only have bags that are in a box or a cover so that a shoes can never come in contact with or tangled in a net. No halter’s either. Look around and see what system works best for your situation and set up, you will never regret this change over, and your horse will thank you.


Tina Sullivan remembers the first time she entered a show. “I was five years old and I was proud as anything to be in lead line, wearing a matching shirt to my mom’s.” Tina still has the ribbon from that class. “In fact, of all the ribbons I’ve won over the years, I think it’s my favorite.” Now, Tina, a mother herself, is making sure her kids get in the saddle right away. “Kyle is only six and he’s already worked cows with his father. He even ropes bales and he’s surprisingly good.” Tina’s daughter, Faith, eight, is all about jumping. “She has Olympic dreams, you know,” says Tina. “Faith was glued to the summer games last time

and kept telling us she’d be there one day.” Tina considers this for a moment, “And I don’t doubt her one bit.” But before we plop junior into the saddle, be aware of that there are laws and rules to abide by. For instance, the Ontario Equestrian Federation has ruled that a horse under the age of five years should not be used for lessons. Horses with eye problems or sight issues are not to be used, and stallions are not to be ridden or handled by anyone under the age of 18. Vanessa Gonyea, a certified coach, points out, “I feel it is my job to give a sense of safety in my barn and around my horses, and to predict possible

Starting them Young; Starting them Right getting your kids into the saddle the safe way

dangerous issues and solve them before they become a problem. I ride all my lesson horses are ridden on a regular basis.” In the United States, individual pony clubs set their own age requirement due to the availability of instructors and facilities. Some clubs in the USPC start at the age of four instead of the usual seven or eight years, if they have qualified instruction. For a number of equine insurance companies, the rules are clear. They state that a coach cannot teach children under seven and no liability or insurance will be granted if a child younger than seven got hurt. If that happened, the coach and farm would

group is very similar to LTED, but covers a broader spectrum of sport activities. In the United States, the USPC (United States Pony club) has a booklet called Junior Pony Club to gently introduce horses to young members. LTED was created to increase the potential of riders and ensure enjoyment for developing equestrians; it has simple outlines for different age groups. The Pony Club in the States has similar. The first group in the LTED starts at age three and continues to age eight, stating that the child should have a fun, all around experience with horses. This should be done in a peer group which will encourage and stimulate interest

in learning about rules, responsibility and horse handling. LTAD agrees that children from three years of age to the age of six should have a varied and relatively unstructured play with different body movements. It helps brain functions, social skills, co- ordination, and most importantly, confidence. Proper posture with bone and muscle development is also encouraged at this stage. When a youngster reaches 8 years of age, well structured activities that build basic skills should be introduced but the emphasis should still be fun. Serious competition should only be gently introduced. The booklet, “Junior Pony Club� deals with this age group

Photo credit: Jennifer McCready Photography/ Brianna Greensides and her pony Handsome Bob

have to pay for all legalities involved and the coach would lose their license. Much has been written regarding when bone structures have hardened leading countless coaches to believe that children under seven do not have the attention span or muscle control necessary for properly controlling a horse. Where can a parent look to find such information? And what can a child actually do at what age? The OEF and Equine Canada have designed two simple guidelines called the LTED or Long Term Equestrian Development program and the LTAD or Long Term Athlete Development program. The Athlete development

Is Your Child Ready to Ride? Does your Child... • Have a desire to ride? • Have sufficient muscle strength to hold the proper position in the saddle? • Have the balance to remain on the horse? • Have the ability to understand and follow directions and instructions? • Have adequate attention span

Photo Credit: Charles Phillips

as well and requires that a parent or qualified adult attends the meetings with the child. Children at this age have limited action with horses, without supervision. To gently immerse the child into horse (or pony club) communities, the Junior pony club has demonstrations (by older club members) and field trips during their first 15 unmounted meetings. At about 12 or 14, according to the LTED, a child should still be encouraged to have an all around sports experience with more commitment to equestrian disciplines if they wish. They need help to develop decision making and learn how to visualize and use relaxation techniques. At this point in the lessons, goals should be simple and only be what the rider needs to know to accomplish the goals. Refining equestrian skills and developing consistency with performance, are introduced at the ages of 12 and up. This is when it is time to build foundations in personal competitive excellence, and independent decision making comes into play. Mental training is just as important as physical to an aspiring athlete. Along with growth spurts, children at this age are ready to begin more formal training without specialization. Too much specialization can lead to burnout and injury. The United States Pony club has no minimum age for membership but has a booklet designed for children aged four to six. Too often parents have their own goal or reasons for putting their children in riding, which often causes conflict. By placing too much emphasis on ribbons or training hard too early, parents can cause burnout and loss of interest. The same warning can be true for parents trying to live their equestrian dreams through their offspring. One must keep in mind that children are more likely to continue in a sport like riding if they are happy and satisfying their own motives, rather than their parents’.

• Have neck muscles that are strong enough to support an approved helmet? • Have a saddle that fits child and horse? • Have a qualified and certified instructor Is your Horse Suitable?

Does your horse... • Have a quiet and calm nature? • Have manners? • Have a saddle that fits properly • Have a saddle that fits child • Have proper training and experience • Fit the child. A child’s horse should be small enough to let a child’s legs to be under their body and their foot to be halfway down the horse’s side. Your child doesn’t have to stay out of the saddle even if you don’t have your own horse. Look for qualified lesson program, or consider horse camps. • Call local barns that offer lessons to find out if they offer classes or camps to kids. • Connect with other horse lovers on Facebook and Twitter • Ask at the local tack store. • Check local online resources that maintain directories of lesson barns etc. Before you commit, visit: • It doesn’t have to be state of the art, but it should be neat and tidy. • There should be some kind of fenced riding arena or school in which lessons are conducted • There should be a variety of lesson horses, of all sizes, suitable for beginners. • The horses should be clean and healthy. • The tack should be in good repair. It doesn’t have to be new, but dirty, broken, or mouldy tack should make you think twice. • Ask if the first lessons are basic introduction to horses classes (leading, grooming, tacking), or how they integrate that into their program. • Does the school offer shows to help parents see progress

and give the children a chance to ‘show off’ their equestrian skills? • Watch some lessons to see if the instructor would suit your child • Does the coach seem to have an easy way with the children? • Are there rules to provide safety for horse and rider? • Does the coach take time to explain things carefully to students? • If a rider makes a mistake, how does the coach react? • Ask around. Ask parents of the students and also try to ask people in the area if they know anything of the barn’s reputation.

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With the ration calculator you can: • Easily create balanced diets for your horse • Compare feeds and supplements on quality and price • Feed knowing your horse’s nutrient needs are met

Simple and affordable! Use it yourself at 2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


Don’t have your own horse but still want the kids to ride? Your child doesn’t have to stay out of the saddle even if you don’t have your own horse. Look for qualified lesson program, or consider horse camps. • Call local barns that offer lessons to find out if they offer classes or camps to kids. • Connect with other horse lovers on Facebook and Twitter • Ask at the local tack store. • Check local online resources that maintain directories of lesson barns etc. Before you commit, visit: • It doesn’t have to be state of the art, but it should be neat and tidy. • There should be some kind of fenced riding arena or school in which lessons are conducted • There should be a variety of lesson horses, of all sizes, suitable for beginners. • The horses should be clean and healthy. • The tack should be in good repair. It doesn’t have to be new, but dirty, broken, or mouldy tack should make you think twice. • Ask if the first lessons are basic introduction to horses classes (leading, grooming, tacking), or how they integrate that into their program. • Does the school offer shows to help parents see progress and give the children a chance to ‘show off’ their equestrian skills? • Watch some lessons to see if the instructor would suit your child • Does the coach seem to have an easy way with the children? • Are there rules to provide safety for horse and rider? • Does the coach take time to explain things carefully to students? • If a rider makes a mistake, how does the coach react? • Ask around. Ask parents of the students and also try to ask people in the area if they know anything of the barn’s reputation.


“Get all the good laughs you can.”

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


Welcome to the first article in our series of Sew Your Own Show Clothes

Come explore the world of sewing your own show clothing. Each month we will discuss fabrics, patterns, sewing machines, rhinestone, techniques, and so much more. The ideas, tips, tricks and information are designed for the beginner or home seamstress. You really need only basic sewing skills to create

your fabulous equestrian clothing. Before you can begin, you need to know what you want to sew. Begin slowly, with an easy pattern and progress to appliqués and more involved items as your skill and confidence grow. Equestrian wear patterns are available for most of your showing and horse accessory needs. You will have to read the pattern envelopes to know what type and how much fabric to purchase. If the

pattern requires a stretch fabric, the envelope will tell you how much stretch the fabric must have. The pattern envelope will also tell you what notions (zippers, buttons, contrasting fabric, interfacing, etc) that you need to purchase to complete your project. Most people choose to begin with a rail shirt. These shirts are most often made from lycra, spandex or lycra/spandex blends. The terms lycra and spandex are often used interchangeably, however Spandex is a brand name while lycra is a generic name for the same type of fabric. As these fabrics are not usually found in big box stores, finding quality fabrics is the hardest part of creating your show shirt. You need to purchase medium- to heavy-weight lycra/spandex fabric. If you think of swimsuit weight fabric, you’ll have the right weight fabric. Do online fabric searches and also check out online auction sites such as eBay. Stretch fabrics, such as lycra and spandex, seem to have a reputation as being difficult to sew. Some of the earlier fabrics were very lightweight and ran when cut or even when rhinestones were attached with rim sets. Today’s fabrics are much less temperamental. In addition to the lycra fabric needed for the body of the shirt shown in the picture, I also needed a separating zipper, ultra suede for the collar and cuffs and interfacing for the collar and cuffs.

Separating zippers are available at most stores that sell sewing supplies. The problem here is that you sometimes can only purchase separating zippers that have the heavy plastic molded zipper teeth. This is not necessarily bad, but it sometimes overwhelms the front of the shirt or causes a ‘rippling’ effect so that the front of the shirt does not lay smoothly. Try to find what they call a ‘formal wear’ zipper. It’s a lighter weight, coil zipper that will blend into the shirt. You can also try an invisible separating zipper for the shirt front. On this particular shirt, I used ultra suede for the contrasting collar and cuffs. It is not a requirement to use ultra suede. You can use another lycra, twills, satins, sateens, etc ~ whatever fabric makes the shirt look good. Sometimes ultra suede is the best fabric but sometimes its flat finish detracts from the look and another fabric becomes better suited to being used for the collar and cuffs. Just a note, be sure that if you are going to use ultra suede, that you purchase genuine ultra suede. Sometimes store clerks do not know the difference between suede, micro suede and ultra suede. Ultra suede is a man made material that does not fray. Other suede fabrics, including mirco-suedes, will fray. While this may not be a consideration for use in the cuffs and collars, it is definitely a factor when you start to make appliqués and chaps. Although some seamstresses insist that you can only sew show clothing with a serger, spandex and lycra can be sewn with almost any regular sewing machine.

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary

Some of the newer sewing machines have built in stretch stitches. If you have an older machine, you can use a simple zigzag stitch. Lycra does not fray, so sewing with a serger is purely personal preference when you are sewing for yourself. Although a serged seam may be more pleasing to the eye, (some people consider it more “finished”) there is no real reason that your personal show clothing would require a serger. You will have to experiment with your sewing machine and your fabric to see which type of sewing machine needle works best for you. My machine works best with a ‘universal’ needle and polyester thread. Now that you have the basic items to begin your shirt, you need to know how to measure yourself and how to determine your correct pattern size. Equestrian wear pattern sizing does not equate to street wear sizing. Every manufacturer creates it own sizing, therefore it is strongly recommended that you select your size based upon your actual measurements. Wear the type of bra that you would normally wear when showing your horse. If you wear a cami or tank top under your shirt, be sure to be wearing that too. Have someone else measure you so that you are not twisting, leaning or bending and getting a false number. Hold the tape measure snug but not tight as you measure. Do not suck in your tummy, or hold your breath. Be real about the measurements. Fudging anything here will result in a bad fit in your finished garment. Stand and

breathe normally. Remember that this shirt is supposed to fit you when you are riding. Write down your measurements for your bust, waist, hip, arm length and finished length. You will need to refer to them as you determine your shirt sizing. Using the size chart on the pattern envelope, find the column(s) that contain your measurements. Don’t be concerned if your bust measurement is one pattern size while your waist measurement is in another pattern size. Most of these patterns contain multiple pattern sizes and you can blend the sizing to meet your measurement requirements. I strongly recommend that you do not cut your original pattern. Instead, using tracing fabric (available at most fabric stores). It’s light weight, see-through, and has a grid pattern printed on it. Using the tracing fabric, trace over the pattern size(s) according to your


measurements and the sizing guide. If you cannot see the pattern lines easily, tape your original pattern to a sliding glass door or window and then tape the tracing fabric over that. The daylight will allow you to see the lines more clearly. As you trace your pattern, you will notice little wedges, diamonds or triangles along the sizing lines. You need to mark these as you trace. They are called notches and help you in lining up your fabric as you sew. Single notches will match up to single notches, double notches match up to double notches, etc. Some patterns have these notches marked inwards and some have them marked outwards. This is personal preference whether you mark them in or out. I prefer cutting the notches out so that if I need to enlarge the garment, I do not have the inward notch cuts interfering with my new seam allowance. If this is the first time you have used this particular pattern, I would suggest pinning or basting the traced pattern together and trying it on for size. This will help you determine whether you are comfortable with the fit of the shirt. This also gives you the chance to make changes in the fit before you cut your shirt fabric. Once you are satisfied that the tracing fabric pattern will fit the way you want, then it is time to lay it out on your fabric. When handling lycra, there are a couple things to take into consideration. First, no matter where you purchased your fabric, allow it to rest before pinning on your pattern. If the fabric


was purchased directly from a rolled bolt, the manufacturing process may have stretched it. It needs to return to its natural lay before you use it. Unlike cottons and some other fabrics, you cannot force lycra to square up. You must use it as it lays. If the salvage edges and the folded edge are lined up and the fabric lays flat on the table, even if the ends are not even, then you are ready to begin. Before you pin your pattern to your shirt fabric, take a look at the fabric and the print design that may be running through it. Some fabrics have one-way patterns. This means that the print on the fabric only looks right when viewed from one way. If you look at it from the opposite side, the print will look up-side down. In this case, you will want to make sure that any print that appears to be up will flow towards the neck and shoulders of the pattern and not towards the waist. If the flowers or waves or print is all over the place ~ some up, some down, some sideways, then it does not matter as much how you pin your fabric to it. I still always suggest that you put the tops of your pattern pieces laying the same way on the fabric. Even an all over pattern can look odd if one pattern piece appears to have the print running up and another piece appears to have the print running down. Once you are satisfied that you have the fabric print figured out, go ahead and pin your pattern pieces to the fabric. Use sharp pins (get rid of old, dull pins by putting them in an empty prescription

bottle before throwing them into the trash). Do not lift the fabric to pin the pattern. This causes bumps in the fabric and will cause problems when cutting. Double check that all pattern pieces that are supposed to be placed on the fold are pinned to the fold edge. Before you begin cutting, double check your measurements and that you have all of the pieces to the pattern pinned down. Now you are ready to begin cutting out your project. Next issue: Interfacing, zippers, and assembling your shirt.

“Always drink upstream from the herd.�

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


By Danvers Child, CJF


: Dear Rein Magazine, A horse where I board my horse has had a nasty abscess during the summer. What exactly is an abscess, how do I know if a horse has one, and what can I do to prevent and or treat one?

Although the majoity of abscesses are found in the whiteline, they also occur in the solar region.

Although the foot looks much cleaner at this point, the real issues are still at work. Bacteria is undermining both the frog (thrush) and the sole (subsolar abscess)

Abscesses Definition: An abscess is an extremely localized infection, which is generally “walled off” within the hoof capsule, often creating extreme pressure. There are numerous causes for such infections; however, the primary causes are bacterial and fungal infections, puncture wounds, and seedy toe. Left unattended, an abscess will often migrate up the hoof capsule, following the path of least resistance, until it eventually “blows out” through the hoof wall or, more often, at the coronary band.

At this point, the problem is evidencing primarily as an issue of thrush

Above and below: Bacteria has clearly undermined the entire frog.

SYMPTOMS: lameness (often profound) altered hoof flight pattern altered hoof landing pattern “track” following line of infection focused sensitivity concussion sensitivity PREVENTION: provide clean and debris free environment provide regular maintenance TREATMENT: Abscesses should be opened and drained from the ground surface; otherwise, they will often migrate up the hoof capsule, extending both the time period


The thrush appears to be confined to the apex area of the frog.

and the severity of the lameness. Many abscesses will vent and drain as a result of poulticing and/or soaking. Since opening an abscess is an invasive procedure and often involves contact with sensitive tissue, an equine veterinarian should be contracted to debride the infected area and administer appropriate medications, as well as to ensure that the horse’s tetanus vaccines are current and sufficient.

Although the necrotic frog tissue has been removed, it is evident that the bacteria has also undermined the sole at the apex of the frog.

“The income tax has made more liars out of the American people than golf has.”

2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


In general, the affected area should be treated to ensure that all infection is gone and the abscess is no longer active. The hoof should then be wrapped/taped to ensure that no foreign material enters the affected area. This procedure should be repeated until the opening is dry and healing (usually about a one week period). FOLLOW UP: As the abscess heals, a pocket or void will remain until the insulted area grows out. This void represents an opportunistic area for re-infection and should be inspected and cleaned regularly. In some instances, it is advantageous to pack this void with a treatment material (e.g., treated cotton ball). See more ‘Ask the Farrier’ on pg 90


Additionally, the medial aspect of the sole lifts and raises with slight pressure.

Necrotic tissue has been removed at the apex of the frog.

The sole can be lifted with finger pressure.

Necrotic tissue has also been removed along the bar. At this point, the area is sufficiently open for medication, and the sole is left for protection and support. A shoe and hospital plate were then used to protect the hoof and allow for continued treatment.

Photo credit: Copyright April Raine | EquiDesis

Treatment varies according to the practitioner; some recommend a complete paring out of the infected and surrounding area, followed by application of a shoe and pad. Most practitioners prefer a less invasive approach and recommend providing a small drain hole which should be kept open for drainage and application of medication(s), poultices, and/or soaks. A compromise approach, which is more expensive but returns a horse to service more quickly, is to provide a small opening for drainage and medication, followed by shoeing with a conventional shoe capped with a removable hospital plate.

The American Farrier’s Association focuses on education through their voluntary certification programs. To learn more about the AFA, visit Article copyright Danvers Child, CJF. Article reprinted with permission from the author. All rights reserved. Visit us on Facebook or Focus on Horse Owners EquiDesis, LLC. is an award winning media & marketing firm serving the equine community. We serve as a resource center, providing information & design materials for members of the equine publishing industry.

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: Dear Rein Magazine, I never know the best way to hold my horse for the farrier. What is the best way to help without getting in the way?

Hold Your Horses!

Holding for the Farrier Properly All horse holders are not created equally. Ask any farrier or vet, and they’ll tell you that there are people they would prefer to have holding horses for them. In fact, quite a few vets and a growing number of farriers actually employ their own horse holders. Sure anybody can hold a horse. But sometimes you’re better off with a horse tied to a wall than with certain people on the end of a lead rope: the guy who holds the tail end of a 12’ lead while sitting side-saddle in a chaise lounge; the girl who keeps her horse on a lunge line because he doesn’t like to stay close, the woman who’s more concerned about her clicker hand than her lead rope hand, and the kid who can’t feed carrots fast enough and lets the horse swallow the plastic bag. While these folks are the extremes who make for good story telling, you get small doses of their behavior from lots of horse holders. And, to be fair, let’s admit that some of the farriers and vets out there don’t always have the best horsemanship skills either; their schooling usually assumes rather than includes horse-handling skills. It really comes down to knowing horses well enough to anticipate what’s going to happen before it happens and knowing how to stop it or make it work to your advantage. Ultimately, it comes down to “horsemanship,” a combination


This is a common mistake, of not only holding a horse too tightly, but also putting yourself in jeopardy.

of learned skills and natural instincts, and it’s not something that people are going to get from reading articles, attending clinics, or watching videos. Nevertheless, these venues have something to offer and can provide some insights that will help you along the way and maybe even keep you from committing some of the cardinal sins of horse holding, while getting you, your horse, and your farrier safely through a hot, late summer day.

Do… Relax… Horses take their cues from their holders. If you’re relaxed and comfortable, you will “telegraph” those feelings to the horse and help him find his comfort zone. Do… Stand on the same side as the farrier except when the front leg is on the peg… If something goes wrong, selfpreservation instincts kick in, and—no “Never miss a good opportunity to shut up.”

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matter how much you want to help the farrier—you’re going to save yourself. If you’re on the opposite side of the horse, it’s very likely that you’re going to make self-preservation moves that will result in swinging the horse right over the top of the farrier. If you’re on the same side as the farrier, you’ll swing the horse away from both of you. Ultimately, you should ask your farrier where he wants you to stand, but if he’s survived a few years of shoeing, it’s likely that he’s going to want you on the same side of the horse as he. Do…“Square” the horse up… If a leg comes off the ground without the horse being squared and balanced, he’s going to be more difficult to deal with. Do… Tilt the horse’s head slightly toward the farrier… If the horse’s head is slightly tipped toward the farrier, he’s not as likely to throw extra weight or “lean” on the farrier. Additionally, you’re recognizing his limited field of vision and allowing him the opportunity to see what’s happening.


Do… Keep attention/Pay attention Holding a horse while he gets new shoes can be deadly boring, but it can be just plain deadly if something goes wrong. Basically, your job is to keep the horse’s attention, and you can’t do that if you’ve gotten distracted. If you have to do something to entertain yourself, don’t let it distract you. Turning your back to the horse to carry on a conversation, chatting it up on the cell phone, and other such things turn you into a poor hitching post.

Note that you have to be careful about this when the farrier is working on a hind leg; if the horse’s head is tipped away from the wall, it’s likely that his butt is pointing at it, which can put the farrier in a dangerous position as he extends the hind leg.

Do… Keep a good hand on the lead There’s a comfort zone on a lead rope. If you toss the horse too much lead, you don’t have control, but if you gather him up too much and don’t give him a little freedom to move, he’ll resist. Basically, you have to walk a fine line between establishing control and trying to over control.

Don’t… Allow nuzzling… It’s very doubtful that your farrier will ever think it’s “cute” for a horse to lick and nibble! Although you may be confident that “Poopsy” would never bite, your farrier probably doesn’t share that confidence. And because the farrier is often “wearing” the smells of strange horses, “Poopsy” may well surprise you!

Do… Use walls to your advantage I don’t know why, but horses find walls comforting. Put a horse in cross ties in the middle of an aisle, and within moments, you’ll find him migrating toward the wall. Rather than fighting him away, it’s best to take advantage of this “comfort zone.”

Don’t… Discipline without warning… Getting a nail jerked into your hand is never fun, but it’s really frustrating when it happens because the holder has slapped the horse for nibbling on his arm or something similar. If you need to correct

Do… Keep the horse’s head up… Once a horse’s head drops below his withers, he’s throwing extra weight at the farrier, and the lower his head goes, the more weight he throws.

“Buy land. They ain’t making any more of the stuff.”

your horse, do so, but let the farrier know what’s coming! Don’t… Feed the horse… While hay or grain may keep a horse’s attention for a time, the feed is keeping his attention, not the handler. You’re simply asking for trouble to associate feeding with trimming/shoeing. Besides, most horses get grumpy while they’re eating. Don’t… Use restraints you’re unfamiliar with… If you’ve never used a chain over a horse’s nose, this is no time to introduce yourself to the concept. Don’t… Overload the senses… The boredom that comes with horse holding can lead holders astray, tempting them to get something done. Don’t succumb to the temptation and overload the horse by trying to clip, groom, check teeth, or whatever. Likewise, even if a horse is used to lots of activity, it’s usually best to keep the dogs and kids out of the work area. Environment… While it’s not necessarily “holding,”

there are a number of things you can do that make holding the horse easier. Basically, you can create a situation or environment where you’re not setting things up to fall apart. Scheduling… If you feed at a specific time every day, you don’t want to schedule your farrier visit for that time. Horses are creatures of habit, and they don’t like it when you break them out of their routine. And they certainly don’t like it when they think that everyone is getting fed but them!

not going to give you their attention. Likewise, there are comfort areas where horses will relax; you don’t want to trim the stud in front of the mare’s stall, and you don’t want to trim the baby in the wash rack that he’s never been in. Fly spray… It’s a known fact that one fly can keep a horse’s attention better than two people. Using a good fly spray and running a fan during fly season can make everyone’s day go more smoothly.

Location… Horses are herd animals, and if you’ve got them too close to or too far away from their pasture mates, they’re



The American Farrier’s Association focuses on education through their voluntary certification programs. To learn more about the AFA, visit Article copyright Danvers Child, CJF. Article reprinted with permission from the author. All rights reserved. Visit us on Facebook or Focus on Horse Owners EquiDesis, LLC. is an award winning media & marketing firm serving the equine community. We serve as a resource center, providing information & design materials for members of the equine publishing industry.

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“You know horses are smarter than people. You never heard of a horse going broke betting on people.”

Essential First Aid Kit For Your Barn by: Dr. Rick Norton, D.V.M. ~ Equine Practitioner Lincoln, Nebraska & EquiMedic USA Is your Barn First Aid Kit there for you – literally and figuratively? Are the supplies fresh, current, and not beyond their expiration dates? Do you keep your first aid kit clean? Do you keep the products themselves clean by using sanitary methods of handling and applying medications? How about exam gloves – are there plenty in your kit or have they been used up and not replaced? You don’t want to be without your handy, indispensable barn equine first aid kit; nor do you want it to be ill equipped or poorly outfitted. If you don’t even have one, you shouldn’t have horses either. Purchase or make a first aid kit for your barn or stable, and make sure it is fully packed with all of the items that you might need for the emergency care of your horse. Sickness and injury are the two major concerns that you need to prepare for. When your kids get a little older, you can tell them to stick a band aid on the cut, or administer a simple medication. Your horse never reaches any level of self care, or prevention for that matter. Your horse is always, and constantly, your charge, dependent totally upon you for more than just water, feed and love. As a horse owner you are probably the first person who will be on site to discover injury or signs of ill health. The first to discover your horse’s problem could also be a family member, stable mate, or barn attendant, but you will be the person expected to make decisions and take appropriate action. Your ability to administer quality first aid could be the determining factor in your horse’s outcome. Time is often of the essence in saving an injured equine partner, getting him back to use in a shorter period of time, causing less pain and discomfort, keeping your veterinary bill reasonable, or possibly even in saving your horse’s life. The first consideration in planning or purchasing an equine first aid kit for your barn is the kit con-

tainer itself. A cabinet on the wall can work, but it can’t be taken to the site of where the horse needs aid; and many times the horse can’t be brought to it. A kit that is portable should be of major consideration. Some horse owners may prefer a hard sided type of kit, made of metal or a plastic type of material. These are normally quite durable, but can be easily broken when handled in cold weather. Hard sided boxes don’t always allow for different sized bottles, products, and equipment and can waste space and not have any “give” for accommodating different product configurations. Organization of your kit should be a huge consideration when planning or purchasing a barn first aid kit.

Your first aid kits serves you in a location that is dusty and dirty, so plan to clean it regularly so you don’t carry unnecessary contaminants to an injury scene right on your first aid kit. A good quality first aid kit should wash up about like new if cared for properly. Don’t subject yourself to the embarrassment of having your local vet or your horse friends see you with a dirty first aid kit near an injured or sick horse. Look for a kit bag design that offers you plenty of organizational features. As many pockets, sections and dividers as is necessary for the job should be essential purchase features. You will want to be able to put your hands on what you need quickly, so keep organizational needs in mind.

There is nothing more frustrating than to be faced with an emergency, with time being of the essence, than to not be able to put your hands on the items you need so desperately. Unless you use smaller sized containers inside of your hard sided kit, to allow for orderly organization of your emergency products, a hard sided kit does not necessarily offer the best in organizational features.

Another feature to look for is what is called “daisy chains”, or elastic loops. Bottles and jars need a place where they can be held upright for the safety of the product. Small equipment such as bandage scissors, tweezers, syringes, flashlight, thermometer, hypodermic needles, wooden and cotton tipped medication applicators, stethoscope, hoof pick, wound stapler and oral pastes organize very nicely when held by rows of elastic loops.

Think of how your veterinarian organizes and transports his medical products when he or she comes to your farm, or when you go to their clinic. You aren’t going to have need of the vast variety of items and medications that your veterinarian has to travel with or keep in inventory, but you should take a page from your vet’s system of organization.

A well designed equine first aid kit will not only offer several daisy chains, but the sizes of the loops will be designed for fitting the contents of the kit, which will require a wide range of loop sizes. Extra loops should be available for items which you might already own, and those you might add to your kit in the future.

Being well organized will not only allow you to be able to administer emergency care faster, but it will also allow you to be able to monitor your products and know when medications and supplies need to be replaced, or supplemented. Remember that other members of your family might be using products from the same kit, so decide who will be in charge of keeping it properly organized and stocked. Consider a soft sided equine first aid kit for a number of reasons.

a soft sided kit is most portable, and most durable

plan to wash it in the family or barn laundry at least once a year

A well designed complete kit purchased for your barn equine first aid needs should offer you at least some empty room. Likely if you’ve had your horse for a while, you may have a few emergency items on hand, and you will want to add those to your new kit. Your goal should be to get all of your first aid products and supplies all together in one storage place. When you get your new first aid kit, spend some time with it; you and your family members who might use it. Unpack your kit and read the use directions on any products you aren’t totally familiar with. Once you are familiar with your kit contents, repack and reorganize it in a manner that makes sense to you. You will be the one

having to use this kit under possible tense and stressful conditions, so how and where to find the products you need should make sense to you. You might want to consider keeping bandaging materials together, equipment gathered near each other, wound products side by side, topical and oral items close, and human products together in yet another pocket or separated section of the kit bag. It’s your kit; you will be the one using it, so make sure it’s organized in a way that works for you.




Another consideration would be to show your new kit to your veterinarian and let him or her make recommendations as to what products to use or not to use in specific instances. For instance, greasy or astringent products should not be used in wounds that may need to be sutured or stapled. When you need to use your kit, you need to use it wisely, so spend some time with your kit and its contents before an emergency surprises you.

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“The trouble with practical jokes is that very often they get elected.”

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Equine Grain-Associated Disorders By Judith A. Reynolds, Ph.D., P.A.S., Dipl. A.C.A.N. Equine Nutritionist, Equine Product and Technical Manager, ADM Alliance Nutrition, Inc.


umans and horses have different digestive tracts and eat different foods (feeds), but there are similar food-related medical problems in both species. In humans, similar clusters of metabolic symptoms called Syndrome X, The Metabolic Syndrome, The Dyslipidemic Syndrome and The Insulin-Resistance Syndrome are being studied1. Similar syndromes have been reported and named in horses. Unfortunately, most of these terms do not clearly describe the disorders or offer clues to possible management strategies. The term EGA for Equine Grain-Associated Disorders was recently introduced to describe common feed-related syndromes in horses2. Subsequently, Dr. Kronfeld of Middleburg Agricultural Research and Extension Center at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, explained the history and etiology of the various human and equine syndromes, offered EGAD as a less confusing name and provided some management suggestions to reduce these problems in horses1. Following is a summary of his findings. In 1988, endocrinologist Gerald Reaven suggested that a high-(soluble) carbohydrate diet aggravated or exacerbated insulin resistance leading to obesity, type 2 diabetes mellitus, hypertension and coronary heart

disease in humans. His suggestion opposed the then-current American Heart Association’s recommendation for a low-fat (high-carbohydrate) diet to reduce heart disease. Syndrome X factors were identified as: insulin resistance, hyperglycemia, elevated plasma VLDL triglyceride level, low plasma HDL cholesterol level and hypertension. In 2001, Dr. Kronfeld used the term Equine Syndrome X for equine disorders associated with long-term consumption of grains and molasses, which involved insulin resistance. Meals of grains and molasses set up an unnatural feeding-fasting cycle of plasma glucose, insulin and counter-regulatory hormones in horses. As an alternative, he reported that meals of fat and fiber do not produce these feeding-fasting cycles. Fat and fiber meals also reduce episodes of tying-up in horses with Recurrent Exertional Rhabdomyolysis (RER)

and Polysaccharide Storage Myopathy (PSSM)1. The term Equine Grain-Associated Disorders is used to describe both digestive and metabolic disorders in horses. The digestive disturbances involve rapid carbohydrate fermentation and insulin resistance, including some forms of colic, colitis, diarrhea, gastric ulcers and laminitis. The metabolic conditions include some forms of gastric ulcers, laminitis, exertional rhabdomyolysis (tyingup), osteochondrosis, growth rate fluctuations, flexure deformities, hyperlipidemia, oxidative stress, aging, obesity and, possibly, abortion. Some of these risk factors might be nonessential but contributing factors to the disorders1. Dietary recommendations for horses include 1) avoiding high glycemic feeds such as “sweet feed� and oats, which produce increased blood sugar after meals and 2) avoiding unprocessed corn and high-fructan pasture grasses, which provide highly fermentable carbohydrates to the large intestine1. For more information and feeding recommendations, call the Equine Nutrition HELPLINE at 800-680-8254 or visit Kronfeld DS. Equine Syndrome X, The Metabolic Disease, and Equine Grain-Associated Disorders: Nomenclature and Dietetics. J. Equine Vet. Sci. 23(12):567-569.


Kronfeld DS, Harris PA. Equine GrainAssociated Disorders (EGA). Compend. Contin. Edu. Pract. Vet. 2003.


Equine Grain-Associated Disorders Why We’re Going



the Grain

the Horse

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Show off !

the art of showmanship

Showmanship, unlike halter class, is all about how well you show your horse. The AQHA Handbook of Rules and Regulations, states that it is a “poised, confident, neatly attired exhibitor, leading a well-groomed and conditioned horse that quickly and efficiently performs the requested pattern with promptness, smoothness and precision.” The wonderful thing about showmanship being judged primarily on the exhibitor means you don’t need to purchase show saddles, and most training can be done at home. In fact, working on showmanship together will help you and your horse learn more manners and handling skills. It’s a great class to improve everyday working with your horse.

Your Turn Out The Halter: Often used show halters can be purchased for a fraction of the cost of a new one. But even a clean, wellfitting leather halter will suffice in local shows. The halter’s nose band should fit just below your horse’s cheekbone, halfway between his eye and his muzzle. The cheek pieces should fit fairly snug, without slack. While showing, or working on your patterns at home, run the lead shank through the left ring of the halter, under the horse’s jaw, through the lower right ring and snap to the upper right ring of the halter. There should be two to three links of the shank outside of the left halter ring.


Your Hat: Most judges seem to notice your hat first. Make sure it’s clean and properly shaped. If you need to have it cleaned, blocked, and shaped most tack stores can help you out for about $20. The first thing a judge will notice is your hat. It should be clean and well-shaped. Most western stores or trade show vendors at a horse show will charge you $10 to $20 to clean and reshape your hat. It’s money well-spent. Your Grooming: It goes without saying your hair should be tidy. If it’s too long to tuck into your hat, secure it into a neat pony tail or bun. Use hair spray and

clips to ensure no fly always interrupt your pattern. Your Outfit: Most of all, your outfit should be clean and fit well. Instead of spending all your budget on several different outfits, invest in one quality outfit and a steam cleaner to keep it in show shape. Choose a color that compliments both your coloring and the horse’s. Women should have well-done make up; men should be clean shaven. Make certain your pants come to just above the heels of your boots when you run, and shine those boots!

Photo credit: Top, Gillian Carmichael/three middle and on next page, Connie Lywood.

Breanne Lywood, showing her AQHA gelding, Amatter of Dreams, “Seeker”

“Lead your life so you wouldn’t be ashamed to sell the family parrot to the town gossip.”

Poise Showmanship is about exhibiting confidence and poise. A well-run pattern should be lovely to watch. Your posture should be natural, not stiff. Imagine you have sling on and your arm hang level in an “L” with your elbows against your body, but not stiff. Your wrists should be straight, your thumbs on top of your closed hand. Your hand should point toward the left ring on your horse’s halter. Your right arm, the one holding the lead, should stay in the same position no matter if you are leading, backing, or turning him. Robotlike moves, or sloppy positions will cause you to lose points. Stay consistent and natural. Patterns Before you enter the show ring, make sure you’ve practised the maneuvers at home; your horse should get to the point that he can run a pattern without any pulling or correcting. He should understand what you’re asking, including how to square. Teaching your horse slowly, releasing pressure after every proper move, will train him what you want. Remembering to keep your horse’s body straight during the movements. Patterns can consist of several elements. The judge might ask you to walk, jog, back in a straight line or curved line, and pivot.

Pace Every pattern should have a consistent flow and pace. Your pattern should flow easily, moving from one maneuver to the next one and always completing each one before moving onto the next. Don’t rush.

Practice Practise until the horse anticipates. Very different than most classes, in showmanship you want to have a horse that knows what you want instantly. Your movements should be precise and poised.

Bre’s Tips Showmanship competitor, Breanne Lywood adds these tips to keep in mind: Tuck your pants into your boots while practising, and right up until you go into the ring, so that when you show your pants are spotless. If you have a white hat use a bag to take it on and off with so you don’t get it dirty with your hands. To make your pattern tidier, match your stride to your horse’s. Never look at your horse. You’re being judged, not the horse, so make sure your always looking up. When setting up, remember it doesn’t have to be perfect; if you get close to square in a few moments, leave it. Always take chain off when you’re finished patterns; a chain should mean it’s time to work. Make sure your number is securely pinned and not covered by your hair. Your feet should always be pointing at the horses right hoof, and make sure his heads is straight when you are at the judge. Always try to stay the same distance from every cone when doing your pattern.

The Quarter System If the judge is in 4, you should be in 1

If the judge is in 1, you should be in 4

If the judge is in 3, you should be in 4

If the judge is in 2, you should be in 1


Imagine your horse is divided into four sections (see the image to the right). While showing your horse always position yourself in the quadrant that allows you to see the judge at all times, but not block the view of your horse. Only cross the ‘line’ to the appropriate quadrant once the judge crosses the line (but, do not cross until you see the judge has committed to that new quadrant. Crossing over should look smooth and natural. If you are tall, you may find you can do it in one, clean stride, but if you can’t, do not try to do so, it takes most people at least two or three steps. Keep your movements efficient. Keep your eyes up and watching the judge. Start with your outside leg for your first step around your horse’s head. When you’ve reached the other quadrant, close your feet and stand with your toes pointed in the general direction of the horse’s shoulder. Practise the quartering at home with a friend ‘playing’ judge. Ask them to really try to trick you and keep you on your toes, that way, the show ring will feel less stressful.

“The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it in your back pocket.”

Rein ‘s Photoshoot winner! Donna Johnston and her two gorgeous Paints: CS TITAN PERFECT TRIK, “Hattrick” and LR TITANIC SHINE, “Shorty” Photo credit: Brooke Nesbitt Photography


“If you feel the urge, don’t be afraid to go on a wild goose chase. What do you think wild geese are for anyway?”

ving a h t abou included s u l emair product oming you our upc uide om in duct g azine.c pro inmag e

New Custom Headstalls in the Schmersal Ranch Store, these are one of a kind done in .95 sterling jeweler-grade silver. Pricing is per headstall.

New! BR Bridles The complete new line includes: 14 Snaffle Bridles including the Adlington, Aldridge, Bentham and others; 2 Weymouth Double Bridles, the Windsor (see photo) and Warwick; 3 Figure-8 Bridles, the Egham, Fareham and Grantham; 1 Training Bridle, the Hereford. Suggested retail prices ranging from $210 to $388 Cdn depending on the specific design.


photo credit: JOHN BRASSEAUX


o edit

The all-new Greystone Arena Rake and Arena Rake Pro Unlike dragging heavy steel or gates around, which compact your surface, the Greystone Arena groomers will both aerate and groom your surface restoring it to new condition in minutes. Designed to be towed by a quad, ATV, or small tractor, the height adjustable Arena Rake is easily transported into and out of your arena. The unique side grader also eliminates build up from arena sides that you normally have to manually shovel back into the arena. Incredibly easy to use, and simple to adjust to desired level, the arena rake can be used on various surfaces from sand to woodchip/sawdust mix. Grooming the arena now take minutes rather than hours! “The road to success is dotted with many tempting parking spaces.�


“Common sense ain’t that common.”

Insuring your horse

For when he needs you the most What do regular grooming, good nutrition, current vaccinations, and proper hoof care all have in common? They are essential to protecting your horse and keeping him safe, healthy and happy. But who will protect you if these measures fail and your horse becomes ill or suffers an accident? No matter how hard we try, horses get sick and have accidents, often resulting in huge expenses, or worse yet, death. What would you do if you were faced with vet bills beyond your ability to pay? Horse insurance cannot prevent accidents or sickness, but it can help you bring your horse back to health without damaging your pocketbook. And in the unfortunate event that your equine partner dies or needs to be euthanized, the proceeds from a horse insurance policy can effectively protect the financial investment you have made. So why is it people cringe when they hear the word “insurance”? Many people feel that when they buy insurance all they get is a piece of

paper, when in fact, insurance is meant to provide you with total peace of mind when something goes wrong. This peace of mind can only be achieved if you understand your policy and trust your insurance broker. A good horse insurance broker will gain their clients’ trust by demonstrating good knowledge of both horses and insurance, so it is very important to make sure you are dealing with a broker who truly understands the needs of horse owners. BFL’s Equine Insurance Team has been insuring horses for over 20 years. We are horse people with a variety of backgrounds including show jumping, western, dressage, reining, eventing, and more. We really know horses. Of course, the most important part of horse insurance is handling claims. BFL realizes when a horse suffers a major illness or injury, the first phone call must always be to the veterinarian so that emergency treatment can be given. The horse’s welfare must always come first! After the vet has been notified, call BFL using our 24-hour emergency claims line

answered by experienced horse insurance staff. We will ease your stress during this difficult time by working with the vet to help you understand your options and best course of action to take. Buying horse insurance is a smart move to help your horse and protect your investment. Don’t be afraid to ask your broker questions – you are better off to understand your coverage before a claim happens. Horse insurance doesn’t have to be painful – so don’t cringe! Protect your friend and investment with a complete BFL horse insurance package today.

the paddock

business directory


Paddock ads: $75.00 for business card sized ad. Email to book yours

“The minute you read something that you can’t understand, you can almost be sure that it was drawn up by a lawyer.”

the paddock


business directory... continued

“Half our life is spent trying to find something to do with the time we have rushed through life trying to save.�


2011 ~ Rein Anniversary


the feedbag

food worth leaving the barn for

Caramel Apple Crumble




12 caramels


(now you know what to do with the leftover Halloween Candy) 1/2 cup all-purpose flour 3/4 cup butterscotch or topping 2/3 cup slivered almonds 1 teaspoon lemon juice 4 or 5 apples - peeled and sliced 1 (9-inch) pie crust (prepared or fresh)


Preheat oven to 350 F (175 degrees C). Slice caramel candy in small pieces, and then mix with flour in a large bowel. When caramels are covered lightly, stir in apple slices and . In a large bowl, mix candy with flour. Stir in apples, topping, and lemon juice. Pour into pie crust. Bake in preheated oven for an hour or until golden brown. Serve with custard, topped with slivered almonds.

2 cups heavy cream 4 egg yolks 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/4 cup sugar 1/8 teaspoon salt

Bring cream to a near simmer over medium heat. Remove. In a mixing bowl, beat egg yolks, vanilla, sugar, and salt until thickened,. Gradually beat in heated cream. Pour over apple crumble.

“If you’re riding’ ahead of the herd, take a look back every now and then to make sure it’s still there.”

“I’M HAVING A BAD HAY DAY” because they were just too funny not to share! “My bangs could be trimmed a bit more, don’t you think...?”

They say you are what you eat. It was bound to happen.”

Rita Heron

Karen Welch

“I’m NOT a morning horse. Where’s my coffee?!” Jenn Sroka

“Bring back 80s glam rock; they had the best hairstyles” Eileen Quigley

“Stupid food fight” Mary Stewart

“I’m one of Lady Gaga’s biggest fans” Joe Lorincz

Winner of last issue’s What IS this horse Thinking

Sue Kean


“Do the best you can, and don’t take life too serious.”

Rein Magazine Anniversary Edition  
Rein Magazine Anniversary Edition  

Rein Rein Magazine Anniversary Edition