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5/18/12 9:43 AM

June 2012

FROM THE EDITOR’S DESK Flawed Plea Does Disservice to Horses

HOUSTON, (Horseback) – I’ve spent a sizable portion of my career sitting in a courtroom covering some of the most explosive, expensive, and controversial criminal proceedings in recent memory. I covered the Autumn Hills Nursing Home and Lori Hacking cases and wrote books about them. I covered Enron from its beginning to the day CEO Ken Lay and President Jeff Skilling were sentenced to long prison terms - enough for my bona fides.

I really never thought I would need to comment on a court proceeding in Horseback By Steven Long Magazine. This changed in late May when the U.S. Attorney in a Tennessee case accepted a plea on one count of a 52 count indictment against a Tennessee Walking Horse champion trainer and competitor named Jackie McConnell. In almost 40 years covering the courts, and about 2,000 actual hours in a courtroom, I can’t remember a greater miscarriage of justice. Millions of Americans watched McConnell of Collierville, Tennessee, beat, shock, and otherwise intimidate a horse to the point it lay down in its stall and refused to get up and endure any more cruelty. The horrid undercover footage recorded by an agent of the Humane Society of the United States was aired on ABC’s Nightline and on two additional programs on CNN. Further, the video is rapidly going viral on You Tube and is the subject of scores of Google Searches. Hooray for HSUS for their good work on behalf of these terribly defenseless animals at the hands of people such as the now self confessed animal abuser McConnell, whose trainer’s license has now been revoked. McConnell was prosecuted under provisions of the federal Horse Protection Act, a statute that has been on the books for 40 years that outlaws the practice of “soring” of horses in order to produce an exaggerated gait called in Tennessee Walker circles, the Big Lick. The horse lifts its hooves abnormally high to relieve itself of pain from harsh chemicals dripped on its pastern above the hoof. McConnell and another individual are (fortunately) still facing 31 Tennessee charges under that state’s animal cruelty laws. We are told the feds let McConnell off with one count out of 52 because of his age and health. Two simple letters spell out how most Americans who have watched the HSUS video feel about that – B.S. The Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders and Exhibitors Association issued a belated condemnation of the events shown on the video after the fact – despite the fact that practices like McConnell’s training methods have gone on under their blind eye for decades. Further, they went on to put distance between their organization and the organizers of Tennessee Walking Horse shows such as its annual Celebration saying in a press release that they don’t make the rules. Ho hum. According to HSUS, “at the 2011 Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration, 52 of the 52 horses randomly chosen by the USDA tested positive for prohibited foreign substances applied to their pasterns.” Money talks and old habits are hard to break, and as a journalist I long ago learned to “follow the money” as Deep Throat told Woodward and Bernstein 40 years ago. In Shelbyville, Tennessee, the Tennessee Walking Horse Celebration, built on the popularity of the Big Lick, brings an annual $41 million in direct spending to the population of 20,000. Those folks have some tough decisions to make, and they need to make the right ones.


10 HORSE BITES 14 PARELLI - Pat Parelli with Steven Long 16 Dream BIG & Believe - Kelly Kaminski 36 Whole Horsemansip - Dianne Lindig 38 Know Your Feed Tags - Judith Reynolds, PhD. 40 TACK TALK - Lew Pewterbaugh 44 On The English Front - Cathy Strobel 46 Ponying on the Trail - Dr. Jessica Jahiel 48 The Cowboy Way - Corey Johnson 50 COWBOY CORNER - Jim Hubbard Cover Story:

20 Charlie Daniels - Steven Long

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EDITOR Steven Long NORTH TEXAS Mari Crabtree NATIONAL NEWS EDITOR 216-702-4520 Carrie Gobernatz LIFESTYLE EDITOR Margaret Pirtl NEW MEXICO BUREAU GULF COAST BUREAU 832-349-1427 Carol Holloway Laurie Hammer 832-607-8264 Cell 505-315-7842 EVENTS EDITOR Crystal Shell Leslie Greco 832-602-7929 BRAZOS VALUE BUREAU Diane Holt 936-878-2678 Ranch 713-408-8114 Cell

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Jim Hubbard, Steven Long, Vicki Long, Dianne Lindig, Roni Norquist, Pat Parelli, Lew Pewterbaugh, Cothy Strobel, Dr. Jessica Jahiel,Cory Johnson, Dr. Judith A. Reynolds, Lynn Criner, DVM, Margaret Pirtle Volume 19, No 6. Horseback Magazine, P.O. Box 681397, Houston, TX 77268-1397, (281) 447-0772. The entire contents of the magazine are copyrighted June 2012 by Horseback Magazine. All rights reserved. Material in this publication may not be reproduced in any form without the expressed written consent of the publisher. Horseback Magazine assumes no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs and other material unless accompanied by a stamped, self addressed envelope. Horseback Magazine is not responsible for any claims made by advertisers. The views and opinions expressed herein do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher or management. Subscription rate is $25.00 for one year.

POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Horseback Magazine, P.O. Box 681397, Houston, TX 77268-1397. Fax: (281) 893-1029 Email:

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“Horse Bites is compiled from Press Releases sent to Horseback Magazine. Original reporting is done as circumstances warrant. Content is edited for length & style.”

Giant Reining Show to Remain at Glitzy Houston Venue HOUSTON/KATY (NRBC) – The National Reining Breeders Classic has had a home in Katy, Texas since its move to the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in 2001 and NRBC President Tom McCutcheon has announced that a new contract will extend the relationship another seven years. According to McCutcheon, details of the contract extension were being worked out during the 2012 NRBC in April and the contract was signed shortly after the event. “We’re glad to make this commitment to the future of the NRBC,” noted McCutcheon. “The Great Southwest Equestrian Center is a premier facility and with the addition of the new Tellepsen Arena, it’s getting better all the time.” The new arena is named in honor of Howard and Carolyn Tellepsen, Gold Sponsors of the NRBC since its move to Katy, and loyal supporters of the entire Houston-area equestrian community for many years. This Tellepsen Arena will allow the National Reining Breeders Classic to continue its upward growth pattern, noted NRBC Secretary/Treasurer Cheryl Cody. “Having another competition-grade arena, along with all the tremendous indoor and outdoor warm-up arenas already in place at the Great Southwest, will allow the NRBC to enhance the show schedule to include more competition and schooling opportunities for exhibitors. We’re very excited about the upcoming changes and glad to know the Great


NRBC President Tom McCutcheon

Horse Bites - Con’t. on pg. 12

Southwest is our home for many years to come.” The National Reining Breeders Classic is the most successful stallion incentive program in reining history. In just fourteen years, the NRBC has grown to include nearly 200 subscribed stallions. Annually, the payout at the National Reining Breeders Classic exceeds $1.4 million. For information on the NRBC, visit the web site at or call 580-759-3939.

Pacelle Issues Challenge in Wake of Sour Grapes From Walking Horse Folks After ABC Nightline Expose By Wayne Pacelle, CEO, Humane Society of the United States WASHINGTON, (HSUS) – Shelbyville Farm Center division manager Joe Green, Sr. told The Tennessean, in a report on ABC’s Nightline exposing illegal training practices within the show world for Tennessee Walking Horses painted “a

bad picture.” “The good guys have tried so hard to make it right, then that bad guy comes along and tries to ruin it for everybody.” His son, who runs the Farm Center, which does a lot of business with show horse owners and Trainers, had a similar message he conveyed: “The walking horse industry has been under such a microscope for so long that most of the bad guys have been weeded out, and it was unfortunate that ABC tried to paint all of them as bad,” said Joe Green, Jr. “The way they did

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Horse Bites - Con’t. from pg. 11

that TV piece wasn’t even journalism.” These people may really believe what they say, perhaps because people within this industry have been in denial so long. You repeat something long enough that you then internalize it, like so many other people who participate in or defend animal abuse. I see it with sealers, with puppy millers, with cockfighters, and with just about every subculture that causes harm to animals. Tennessee Walking Horses don’t naturally throw their front legs way up in the air, with such a strangely exaggerated gait. This “big lick” gait is artificial and regularly accomplished by the illegal practice of “soring,” the intentional infliction of searing pain with each step. By every indication, this practice is absolutely pervasive in the industry, and it is these competitive pressures that have led to a sort of arms race within the training profession, and the arms used against the horses are oil of mustard, croton oil, chains, and other foreign substances and tools. The now-indicted horse trainer Jackie McConnell may be a particularly ruthless and harsh man,

but so many other trainers are working in the shadows and using very similar methods to get the same results. There is widespread lawlessness within this industry, and the deniers need to take note and recognize reality. Opinion leaders are saying the same thing, such as The Tennessean editorial board and columnist David Climer. Barney Davis, who along with three others was also indicted for Horse Protection Act (HPA) violations in 2011, pled guilty to violating the Act and was sentenced to a one-year prison term after he was caught soring horses on video while out on bond. When the court asked Davis about the pervasiveness of illegal soring in the industry, he responded, “Everybody does—I mean, they’ve got to be sored to walk.” Davis used “pressure shoeing” as his soring method of choice, but the goal was to produce a high-stepping gait by inflicting pain, as McConnell did. These are standard practices in the world of training for these shows. We’re not talking about a few bad apples here. Take a look at these facts: • The industry claims a 98 percent

compliance rate with the HPA, yet 52 of the 52 horses randomly tested were found by USDA to be positive for prohibited foreign substances having been applied to their ankles, at the 2011 Tennessee Walking Horse Celebration, which is the major annual show (the Super Bowl, if you will) within the industry. Foreign substance violation rates (for soring, numbing, or masking agents) at all shows at which USDA inspected horses were 86 percent in 2010 and 97.6 percent in 2011. It doesn’t get more pervasive than that. • In 2006, the Celebration failed to crown a World Grand Champion of the breed when only three of the horses entered to be shown were able to pass inspection for compliance with the HPA. Industry inspectors, under the watchful eye of USDA agents, ruled most of the entries ineligible to compete, and show management decided to shut the event down, rather than hold a three-horse class for the breed’s most coveted title. • A recent analysis of the HPA violation history of the 2011 Riders Cup nominated trainers indicates that Horse Bites - Con’t. on pg. 18


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HORSEBACK MAGAZINE: We’ve all seen it. Horses in the wild will run across and through the water, but sure as you get on one they get scared to death to even cross a mud puddle, a ditch, and you sure can’t cross a creek. Explain this phenomena and what we do to fix it?

Crossing Water

Why? Because so many times we haven’t got the horse’s confidence as a leader. In other words, he’s not sure we’re going to make great decisions.

By Pat Parelli with Steven Long

HORSEBACK: So what is it we do to gain that confidence? What are we doing wrong as the supposed leader?

the wild will cross white water and jump across ravines and do all kinds of things. First of all, it’s a pretty simple thing if you think about it and understand nature. You have to understand that every horse has his own horsenality based on learned behavior, environmental influences, and spirit. HORSEBACK: So you say a horse learns from outside influences. PARELLI: Of course. In the modern horse’s life, there isn’t a creek to cross. So number one, there aren’t the environmental influences. They just aren’t exposed to enough things.

PAT PARELLI: One of the most HORSEBCK: And other animals? frustrating, but I think fascinating things that occur often to people PARELLI: The mare or the herd on trail ride is their horse won’t would be an influence. That same cross a creek and it won’t cross a horse might be reluctant to cross HorseBack_0412_7.5 x 4.88 5/23/12 8:16 PM Page 1 ditch. But as you noted horses in that stream when he’s being ridden.

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PARELLI: We want him to do something in our time frame. It’s the time frame that makes a big difference in what horses do. So how do we cure this? HORSEBACK: We’re all ears. PARELLI: In principal, or in simulation, we get our horses where they are ready, prepared, when they go on the trail ride. Instead of asking what do I do so my horse doesn’t do this, say ‘what can I do to prepare myself and my horse to where that would never happen?’ When you ask yourself that question, the answer is easy. Prepare the horse on the ground, and remember to smile, whistle, and ride – and do it naturally. hB

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ago, but never this. Even though we had bars on the windows of our slant load, a few years ago, one of the rope horses had something hit his eye. After spending over $3000.00 on vet bills, devoted therapy, and countless trips to A&M, we were able to save his eye. He did have a blind spot because of this, but it could have been so much worse. Since then, we usually put fly masks on when hauling in the warm months with the drop downs windows.

“Pet Peeves”


have all seen it, the nice slant load trailer, being pulled by the pick-up truck, coming down the opposite side of the road toward you on a winding country road. As it gets a little closer in your vision, you see a horse’s head hanging out the drop window. I have personally had to swerve in order to not behead one of these horses.

People will spend money on good quality horses, feed, saddles, equipment, etc, yet not take the time or spend a little extra money to put screens or use bars on the head windows of the trailer so the horse can’t stick his head out into oncoming traffic. A rock, a cigarette, bug or any sort of debris can cause a lot of damage to a horse’s eye. I’ve heard horror stories of lead ropes dangling out and getting caught in the wheel, etc. I can’t imagine all the things that can happen. I have done some really dumb things when I was young and starting to haul horses 30 years

This is a fundamental safety issue when hauling, and needs to be addressed. We live near a ranch that is popular for people to haul to trail ride. A few weeks back there was a big organized ride, so lots of rigs were headed out that way. We saw a few horses with their heads hanging out. I’m not saying it’s a certain crowd that does it. I’m just repeating what I witnessed. I cringe every time I

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pass a trailer like that on the road. Just this past weekend, on the state highway that runs through our county, I counted three or four slant load trailers with horse’s heads hanging way out into the oncoming traffic. It’s alarming. Please remember to be safe when hauling your precious cargo. Good luck and happy and safe hauling this summer! RIGHT: For safety’s sake, use screen or close the bars on trailers with drop-down windows hB

Kelly Kaminski has twice won the WPRA World Barrel Racing Championship, and has also won the Reserve Championship twice at the National Finals Rodeo. This great American horsewoman continues to compete, hold clinics, and train worthy horses. She is currently accepting a limited number of horses for training.




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Horse Bites - Con’t. fm pg. 12

the top 20 ranking trainers collectively received 164 citations in 2010-2011 alone, suggesting that if you want to win big, you have to violate the law. There are voices within the industry condemning McConnell, and they’ve rightly excommunicated him. But if they really want the public to believe that the industry is largely complying with the HPA, they need to be much more transparent in their words and deeds, acknowledging the violation histories of key players, and allowing independent law enforcement officials to examine their training practices and the horses before the competitions. And they should be the first in line to support The HSUS’s efforts to strengthen the law, which has not been updated since it was amended in 1976, and to seek adequate funding for enforcement.

That’s my challenge to the leaders of the industry: join us in the efforts to modernize the law and enforce it.

Secretariat’s Birthplace, Meadow Farms, Sold for $5.35 Million at Auction RICHMOND, VA (Top 10 Real Estate Deals) - The State Fair of Virginia property, including Meadow Farms where Secretariat was born and raised, sold in late May at a foreclosure auction for nearly $5.35 million. Officials at Motley’s Auction confirmed the winning bid, subject to approval by the property’s owner. The winning bidder is Mark Lovell of Universal Fairs in Tennessee. There may never be another

horse like Secretariat. The 1973 Triple Crown winner won the Belmont Stakes by 31 lengths. This is the place where Penny Chenery took over management of her ill father’s failing horse empire and engineered the Somethingroyal to Bold Ruler mating to produce the most famous horse of the 20th Century at the same farm that Disney brought to the movie screen in 2010. In 2003 the farm was purchased by the Virginia State Fair. However the economics never worked out and the property was foreclosed. Check out the Secretariat auction details and today’s most entertaining and unusual real estate news stories of the week at: www.


Congress to Protect Commercial Packers WASHINGTON, (American Horse Council) – Congress has passed the Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Backcountry Access Act, introduced by Congressman Devin Nunes (R-CA). The bill directs the National Park Service (NPS) to issue permits to commercial horse and mule packers to operate in the wilderness areas of Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. Due to a lawsuit the NPS had not yet issued permits for the 2012 season. “Commercial packers have been taking visitors into these parks for decades, allowing thousands of Americans to experience the backcountry of these parks,” said American Horse Council (AHC) Legislative Director Ben Pendergrass. “Without the leadership of Congressman Nunes who introduced and quickly passed this bill and the help of Senators Boxer and Feinstein Americans may have lost the opportunity to have this fantastic experience. This bill also saved the livelihoods of the commercial pack operators in the park and the jobs of their employees.” Congressional action was needed due to a lawsuit filed by the High Sierra Hikers Association against the NPS concerning its management of commercial packer access to the wilderness areas of the parks. In January, a federal judge ruled that the NPS had violated the Wilderness act because it had not adequately addressed

commercial stock use in a 2007 park management plan. The NPS then decided not to issue any permits to commercial packers for the 2012 season until the court case was settled. Horse Bites - Con’t. on pg. 34

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America’s Fiddler

Charlie Daniels new beginnings at 75 By Steven Long

The last time I talked to Charlie Daniels it was for a story I was writing that was to appear in Cowboys and Indians. Two paint horse foals had been born. The fiddling country music icon had named them Okie and Rose. Their existence was a miracle since they were twins and most twin horses don’t survive their birth. Charlie’s miracle horses not only had survived and thrived, but were now grown and being ridden. Now they are at the top of the pecking order in their world at Twin Pines Ranch since almost all of their barn buddies died in a fire. ♦ FIRST RIDES ♦

HOUSTON, and even loaded a (Horseback) – Most prized Corriente horse owners don’t bull in the trailer start rebuilding a and backed it into herd almost from the building’s central scratch after a arena for warmth. catastrophic loss Thurman pulled such as the one at out of the electronic Charlie Daniel’s security gate that 400 acre Twin helped his superstar Pines Ranch. Then boss maintain privacy. again, the venerable When Mullins came fiddler is not one back home he walked to look back. At through the front Thurman Mullins rides Twin Perry Neal rides Twin Pines 75 he continues door to have a phone Pines Rosie for the first time Okie for the first time to maintain a thrust into his hand vigorous tour by his wife. schedule, makes appearances on the Murfreesboro, a 32 mile one Grand Old Opry, fishes the pond by way trip. His dad was having “The sky is so lit up it looks like the his Lebanon, Tennessee home (near a time of it adjusting to an whole valley is on fire,” a neighbor Nashville), and consults daily with ranch assisted living facility where he shouted through the receiver. The manager Thurmon Mullins who has had just moved and Mullins, epicenter of that fire was Charlie been with him 35 years. 63, wanted to check on him. Daniel’s barn, filled with the prize It had been a bitter cold day bull, saddles, tack, and stalls filled The night of the fire, Daniels was playing in the rural town 35 minutes with purebred horses. a gig in Colorado, and Mullins, had east of Nashville just off I-40. gone to visit his 95-year-old father in He had buttoned up the barn “That was 30 years of breeding to


“That was

30 years of breeding to get those horses, they were irreplaceable” -Thurman Mullins

Twins “Okie & Rosie” as weanlings

Charlie and “The Twins” at his newly rebuilt barn today

♦ RANCH LIFE ♦ Charlie, and his wife of 50 years, Hazel, with Okie & Rosie along with their dam shortly before “The Twins” were weaned

get those horses,” Mullins says today. “They were irreplaceable.” Nine of Charlie Daniels’ finest horses died in the fire. He estimates the loss in monetary terms at between $150 - $200,000. They were all uninsured. He knew the catastrophe he was facing as soon as he pulled onto the highway to get to Daniel’s Twin Pines Ranch. He could see the barn blazing. When he reached the building followed by a fire truck called by a neighbor, the roof was crashing down on the small central working arena and the prize bull. There would be no saving the animals, tack, or vehicles stored inside. And he faced another problem. Charlie’s ranch is set in hills and valleys, and the fire was running up a hill toward the legendary fiddle player’s home. Quickly



♦ New Beginnings ♦ the fire department put it out as he got his longtime friend on the phone. “Charlie, it’s gone,” Thurman blurted out as he stood in the bitter cold January night. “We had all three stallions, our best mare, our yearlings in there.” “You have to know Charlie to appreciate this,” Mullins recalls. “He was concerned about how we were doing. He wanted to know how I was handling this. Charlie is very religious. He asked what horses we had in the barn, and he told me to keep him informed and then he said he would say a prayer for me.” Two horses that weren’t in the barn were the twin Paints what had caused

a national sensation at their birth by simply surviving. In the horse world it is rare for twins to survive. In this case the two, named Okie and Rose, had not only survived but thrived. Standing in a nearby pasture, the miracle paints had survived not only their unlikely birth, but also the devastating fire that had killed almost everything else at Twin Pines. Now, as 3-year-olds, the horses are saddle ready and rideable. Today Charlie Daniels is glad he was in Colorado when the fire destroyed his barn. “That barn is just down the hill from my house, but all through it they kept taking pictures and sending them to me,” he recalls. “I was on

the phone with Thurman and our county sheriff, and all my people that were there. There was nothing I could do. My heart was breaking, but when you get down to it like I told Thurman, ‘the bad thing was the horses. I first thought we had lost 11. We lost the bull, we lost all the saddles and tack, and we lost some memorabilia that was pretty important to us. But everything besides those horses was just leather, metal, and wood.” “We will make a new beginning,” he told Mullins. “We’ll start over again. That barn served us well for 30 years, and there is nothing we can do about the horses except regret it as bad as we feel about it. Today is the start of a new beginning.”

“I hate admitting it, but I’m just a “Redneck” at heart” - Charlie Daniels 22 HORSEBACK MAGAZINE - June 2012

Not long thereafter, construction began on a new Morton Buildings barn, and the first foal born on the place after the fire was christened, New Beginnings, a beautiful Quarter Horse colt.


“I thought, let’s start over,” Charlie says. “Let’s dig a hole for the ashes, haul the tin off and all the stuff that’s left, and that’s over with then – and that’s exactly what we did. Mullins is more than an employee to Charlie Daniels. Besides his wife of almost 50 years, Hazel, he’s part of the glue that cements the country boy to the land. The new barn was built. On its front, an image of Charlie Daniels on one side of the alley door, the other, a picture of Charlie’s new horned Herford herd of cows that had replaced the Correntes preferred by performance horse aficionados such as rodeo cowboys. “Thurman has been with me 33 years,” he said. “The only difference between him owning my place and working it is that his name is not on it. He knows so much more about animals, farming, the hay, than I do, I just leave it to him. He’s totally into everything that we do. He is a dear, dear, friend and you could not pay him enough money to do anything to hurt me. I could look the world over and I could never find another Thurman Mullins.” Charlie Daniel’s concern for his friend was genuine and well founded. “This thing actually got to him a lot worse than it did to me,” he recalls. “It really tore him up as far as losing the horses. To see something that you were there when it came up, when it was built, something you have seen

Charlie with Twin Pine Ranch’s new stallion prospect

Thurman out with the new herd of horned Hereford

Charlie with the ranch’s first foal after the fire, suitably named: Twin Pines New Beginings

most of the days of your life for 30 years, to see it falling down – that’s pretty hard on you and it was hard on him.” While Charlie’s twins are paint horses, the ranch has been home to Tennessee Walking Horses, grade horses, and rich pedigree Quarter Horses. And the herd is being rebuilt on Quarter Horse blood lines. But both Charlie Daniels and Thurman Mullins don’t look back at

the past. Twin Pines Ranch is again thriving and the herd is growing. Both are now of an age that they aren’t striving to set the world on fire in the horse business. “We’re going to be happy,” Charlie says. “We’re not going to have 75-80 head of horses on the place anymore. That doesn’t fit in the plans right now. But we want the horses that we do have to be good quality horses. We are going for quality rather than quantity. There was a time that we June 2012 - HORSEBACK MAGAZINE


went through quite a few ropin’ horses when the ropin’ horse market was good, we got into cutting horses for awhile, but the market is not what it was. We’re all hoping that will change as time goes along, but basically we’ll always be into using horses because we raise cows. “ Twin Pines’ breeding program is again selling horses. Mullins says a Charlie Daniels horse is priced from $2,500 to $12,500. And there is another factor as well. Charlie Daniels isn’t letting age get in the way of his enjoyment. “I still enjoy getting on a horse for a ride, and you know, while we don’t have the big numbers, what we do have we want to be really good. As time goes along, I’m sure Thurman will cull. We’ll have good mares, good confirmed colts, and that little stud colt we’ve been talking

comes home it’s quite times, fishing in his pond, looking down the hill at his Horned Herefords, and the friends of a lifetime that bring him serenity.

about is probably going to be our foundation.” Charlie’s suffering through what almost all horse owners endure. “My saddle burned up in the fire and I’m breaking in a new one, and that’s not a whole lot of fun,” he laughs. “I had a knee replacement a couple of years ago and a couple of other things, and I really want to get back into riding a lot.” Twin Pines ranch is Charlie Daniel’s playground. Many Nashville superstars seem to be compelled to be surrounded by hangers on and other musicians. But this one is different. When he

“I don’t really run with music people very much,” he says. “I love ‘em, but I hang out with a different…I hang out with rednecks. I hang out with people like Thurman, Leroy, and Ben, the guys that work at our ranch. My office is just down the road. I hate being downright “red neckie” about it, but that’s what I am.” “I love sitting up there on the hill in our screened-in porch and listening to whippoorwills, the night critters, and the frogs,” he says. “I enjoy that. If I didn’t enjoy that I’d be living in a high rise condominium somewhere. We love our country way of life.” Daniels was inducted into the Grand Ole’ Opry in 2008. hB

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This 32-acre equestrian showplace is located west of San Antonio just off of Hwy. 16. Spacious threebedroom/two bath main home with commanding views of the valley below, two bedroom, two bath foreman’s home, and superb equestrian facilities. The main barn has 14 stalls, tack lockers, office, fly spray system, hot & cold wash rack with a drive thru covered unload area between the barn and inside arena; 175x270ft. Poteet sand enclosed lighted arena; second overflow barn with 8 stalls, and additional third and fourth barns have large breeding stalls, two foaling, hot and cold wash rack, 6 additional stalls and both have access to turnout pastures. This is a must see for the equestrian minded rancher looking for a ranch that could be made into an income potential ranch or be used for your personal enjoyment. MEDINA RIVER RANCH MEDINA, TEXAS

Medina River Ranch is a hill country treasure! 1100 acres with two sides lined by water! The main home was originally built in the 1940’s. It’s timeless appeal with updated amenities combine into an extraordinary estate. The compound includes the main home with kids’ wing and is a total of 9200+- SF. There are six native stone fireplaces, inviting country kitchen, native woods throughout, tile and wood floors, pool, and ample lounging areas. The exterior of the home is native river stone with a Spanish tile roof. Other improvements include the 2400+-SF horse barn, implement shed and barn, round pen, arena, 980+-SF cabin, office, party lodge with expansive game room.



If You Think They Don’t Make It Anymore….


Check at Lehman’s

hey say that hardware stores are a “guy thing” but I am inclined to believe that some hardware stores also hold a real fascination for women, but it has to be a special hardware store, not a place like Lowe’s or Home Depot. It is the old fashion kind of hardware store with cast iron cookware, oil lamps and where each different aisle turns into a discovery of an endless number of practical and hard-to-find items.

It is just this type of hardware store that you find in small towns across America, but there is only one that ranks as the largest and one that carries a huge selection of unique tools, cooking wear, stoves, lamps and everyday non-technology practical items. That is Lehman’s


in Kidron, Ohio. What began in 1955 by Jay Lehman, as a store to serve the Amish community with items that didn’t require electricity has now become a mainstay for

You can find old washtubs & more on display at Lehmans

By Margaret Pirtle

residents across the nation who are looking for items that cannot be found anywhere else in the world.

Through the years as Jay’s store grew, people from every state began hearing about the variety of items that could be purchased there. Missionaries heading to remote locations found that the supplies in which they needed to live could be found there. In the 1980’s when the environmental movement picked up steam, homeowners came calling looking for “back to your roots” ways to garden, conserve water and tools that didn’t need a plug. Hollywood quickly learned that Lehman’s was the place to find props for films and vintage churns, cream separators and glass milk bottles. And now the

“preppers”, families who are canning food, putting together survival gear for a unsure future are finding that Lehman’s is the first stop to finding items and learning the “old ways” of doing things. If you are asking yourself, “What can I find here?”, the proper answer is everything. The 32,000 square foot store is like talking a walk back into time. The center piece of the store is a restored 1840’s era barn filled with an assortment of candies from yesteryear; a soda pop shoppe with 220 varieties of glassbottled soda; an outlet center with great deals on close out merchandise and a toy loft filled with the favorites you remember from your childhood. Intermingled with all of this are wood burning stoves, gas refrigerators, solar lighting, hand turned grain mills, and thousands of practical home equipment. If they don’t have it at Lehman’s you probably don’t need it. But Lehman’s is more than just a store - it’s a nostalgic journey to a simpler time. A time when people took pride in their handcrafted furniture or canned goods and when life moved

Amish Made Loved By All

Old World craftsmanship and charm in the form of a stove

at a slower pace. If you can’t take a trip to visit Lehman’s then you can visit their store and order online. You may also order a catalog or just call them up and ask them… ”Do you have…..? That’s what I did and by golly they did!

Lehmans: 1-888-438-5346 hB

The Amish, serve as living reminders of a quieter time, a time when the horse and buggy was the mode of transportation and families lived a quiet life in one community. They do not live in seclusion from the rest of the world. Amish farms can be seen interspersed with modern farms throughout the countryside. One of the great attributes of the Amish is their craftsmanship which can be seen in their furniture. In our fast paced world of toss away and buy new, a piece of Amish carries with it the culture and simplicity of their culture. Every piece of their furniture carrying with it their cherished values is a testimony to the amount of hard work and craftsmanship which goes into producing it. Amish artisans generally work in small workshops and each piece is individually made. The durability of their furniture lends itself to a piece of tradition that will last for generations.



The Supermarket: A store that sells preserved, evaporated, canned, freezedried, reconstituted, Flashfrozen and dehydrated Food

Homegrown By: Margaret Pirtle


nce upon a time, there was real food. You found shrimp near the sea and in shells, not breaded and flash frozen. Corn was on a cob and not kernels swimming in cream sauce. Meat was cut before you by a butcher with no pink slime, meat glue, antibiotics or growth hormones added and it was wrapped in plain white paper not handed to you on a Styrofoam tray. Unfortunately, our new world has found us stalled in traffic, late to meetings or kids after-school events with no time to think about anything for dinner that can’t be zapped in a microwave or grabbed at a fast food window. The supermarket has become out lifeline. It offers us quick dinner options, fills our prescriptions, pays our bills and lets us quickly corral all of life’s annoying errands into one place. But every once in a while, when a little produce stand opens and you stare into boxes of fresh greens and miss-shaped tomatoes, their earthly fragrance wafts upward and you remember that there is real food. So for all you folks who think that genuine food has gone the way of the dinosaur, here are farms where fresh untainted food is still grown.


PRODUCE Krause Farm Organic Vegetables & Melons 5369 FM 2988 Navasota, Tx 77868 936-825-4156

Larken Farms Orchard 3653 Greathouse Rd Waxahachie, Tx 75167 972-938-7150

E & B Orchards 28268 Clark Bottom Hempstead,Tx 77445 979-826-6303

Blueberry Ridge Farm 2785 E. Hwy 80 Mineola, Tx 75773 903-569-1559

Home Sweet Farm Organic Vegetables & Melons 7800 FM 2502 Brenhamn, Tx 77833 979-251-9922 South Tex Organics 6700 N. Doffing Rd Mission Tx 78574 1-888-895-0108 My Father’s Farm 1722 Steffens Rd Seguin, Tx 78155 830-822-0200

The Greer Farm 1444 CR 1225 Daingerfield, Tx 75638 903-645-3223 Boggy Creek Farm 3414 Lyons Road Austin, Tx 78702 512-926-4650 Matt’s Family Orchard 21110 Bauer-Hockley Road Tomball, Tx 77377 281-351-7676

BEEF • POULTRY • PORK Yonder Way Farm Beef, Pork & Poultry 5500 Hwy 104 Brenham, Tx. 866-577-1589 Rehoboth Ranch Beef, Lamb, Poultry & Pork 2238 County Road 1081 Greenville, Tx 75401 903-450-8145 Betsy Ross Beef 410 CR 493 Granger, Tx 76530 512-636-3711 Cross Creek Cattle Company Beefmaster Beef 6512 CR 207 B Plantersville, Tx 77363 936-825-5921 Jolie Vue Farms Beef, Pork, Poultry, 11000 Tappe Rd. Brenham, Tx 713-839-8610 Bastrop Cattle Company Beef Bastrop 1832 Farmers Market 1304 Chestnut Street Bastrop, Tx 512-321-2725 Aquilla Hill Angus Farm Beef 465 HCR 1450 N. Covington, Tx 76636 254-854-3086 South Texs Heritage Pork 4268 CR 404 Floresville, Tx 78114 830-534-7993 Shudde Ranch Beef Sabinal, Tx 78881 830-988-2155



Canyon Lake Gardens Organic dairy/eggs 1218 Canyon Ranch Dr. Canyon Lake, Tx. 78133 210-683-8341

Austin Roasting Company Organic coffees 720 Bastrop Hwy # 301 Austin, Tx 78729 512-751-2272

Brook Acres Jerseys Organic dairy/eggs 851 CR 419 Comanche, Tx. 76442 325-356-2962

Mod Green Pod Organic Cotton Manufacturer 1507 W. Koenig Lane Austin Tx 78756 512-524-5196

Agape Oaks Raw goat milk/yogurt Flower Mound, Tx 75028 214-435-2020

Doguet’s Rice Milling Company Organic rice 795 S. Major Dr. Beaumont, Tx 77707 409-866-2297

Swede Farm Goat milk/cheese/yogurt 26373 W. Brooks Rd Waller, Tx 935-931-1863

Texas Organic Mushrooms 308 S. Chandler Ave Denison, Tx 75020 Weyrick Farm Organic Pecans HC 2 Box 578 Eagle Pass, Tx 78852 830-773-6168 Healds Valley Farms Organic lemons 6715 W. Montecrosto Rd. Edinburg, Tx 78541 956-380-0102 830-773-6168

Finally, there’s a place for red meat in a healthy diet! Our grass fed Texas Longhorn beef is 98% lean, and has less calories, fat & cholesterol than white chicken. Visit our website or call to find out why lean Texas Longhorn Beef is the healthiest meat choice for a balanced diet. Cottonwood Creek Ranch • Ennis, TX • (214) 893-1770 •





Swarovski Crystal Stirrups

SOLAR Tack & Barn Lights

Stylish & comfy adirondack glider

Want to put some “bling” in your summer ride? Jozee Girl stirrups with inlaid Swarovski Crystals are the made to last a lifetime of bling. Inset in to beautifully engraved aluminum, where they are protected from harm, these stirrups will will give you years of solid wear and sparkle. They’re All Girl & All Fun !

These portable solar lights can be mounded to any wood or metal service and easily pull on with a string. A small solar panel is attached outside to absorb the sun’s energy. Easy to install, weather resistant perfect for barns, sheds, tack rooms & more! Bright 10-LED lamp. Includes 3 rechargeable NIMH 1.2V batteries.

Beautiful collection of ecofriendly furniture from Berlin Gardens that is built to last a lifetime! Made from 100% recycled plastic that is rot free, termite resistant, splinter free and will not fade. Each piece is available in solid colors, bicolors and tropical colors.

• available from

• Contact Wild Bill’s for pricing: 409-392-8199

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Horse People.... “Sometimes, when we’re not sitting on horses, we like to sit on couches, eat & watch TV!”

Advertise in Horseback’s Lifestyle Section!






Steven Long brings a robust and well-rounded knowledge of history to Ruby's Passing and weaves it into the story of Elias Logan, an AWOL psychopathic killer possessed by the evil entity, Giromalo Savanorola Demon. After killing a family of three in the sleepy but mob controlled Texas town of Dickinson, the errant soldier steals his victim's car and runs for the Mexican border in a terrifying escape attempt across Texas. The book is lled with legendary gures and events of the mid twentieth century. Steven Long skillfully introduces unforgettable characters like Orville Crump, a hapless and corrupt Texas constable who was offended and obsessed the killings happened on his watch; Sheriff Sam Patchcock, the immensely wealthy West Texas lawman who only put on a badge because he became weary of rustlers stealing cattle on his ranch - a spread 70 miles across in any direction; Sven Fredriksen, a man with a past who taps the rich ore of an abandoned silver mine and then secretly hoards it, and Rosemary Allan who inherits wealth to match Patchcock's own. Steven & his rescued horse, “Facade”, work on bending.

Ruby's Passing is available on order From Amazon in both print and electronic editions, from Barnes and Noble, and better bookstores everywhere. Ru



“What is so special about a house that looks like it was built by pioneers?”

J inside nature

ust as glass and metal create the look of a contemporary modern home, logs, and beams produce an environment that gives you the feeling of nature and soothes the nerves of modern living. Most of us never grew up in a log home, so we can’t quite imagine how it is to be surrounded by heavy timber and the true feel of the outdoors inside a modern home. But more and more people are turning to log homes to escape the conventionally built home and enjoy their own haven from the fast-paced world. It’s not just that the home is built of logs, it the smell, and natural wood that makes these homes inviting. It’s like living inside of nature without the critters and bugs.

It Just Isn’t True:

We have all heard some of the tall tales about owning a log home. The wood rots and insects bore into the logs. You have high maintenance issues and must re-stain the home yearly. Well if you pick the correct logs for your home, none of the above statements are true. A log home made with “Tidewater Cypress” is naturally resistant to bugs and termites. It doesn’t rot or decay due to nature’s preservative - Cypressene. This substance, found naturally in Cypress trees repels termites outright and does not have to be chemically treated like other woods used for building. A good quality stain applied by a professional, makes the maintenance issue no more than for a frame home.

They Are So Expensive:

Here is another myth that we must dispel. The cost to build a top of the line Cypress log home is roughly the same as a brick or stone home and you get to design it the way you want. You can use plans that the builder has; you can modify ready made plans to suit your lifestyle or you can build a custom design from the ground up. You can build a small log home for a weekend retreat or a 10,000 square foot natural castle. If you dream it, it can be built.

Special Cypress Logs

If you want to learn how you too can have the cypress log home of your dreams contact Wayne Dobbs at BK Cypress Log Homes of Texas. Check out the website and browse through the numerous floor plans available for you. Visit: www. or call 1-866-312-7490

Just as food manufacturers, breweries, wineries and other industries wishing to avoid contamination use cypress for vats, tanks and tubs to preserve the delicate flavor and value of their products, Tidewater Cypress logs insure the same quality for your family. Prized for its fine texture and beautiful grain, its natural light color presents a pleasing natural finish. It has been the choice of many architects including Frank Lloyd Wright for its distinctive look and durability since the early development of our country.



Horse Bites - Con’t. from pg. 19

Polo Thriving at Wellington Hotbed of Horse Activity WELLINGTON, Fla. (Phelps) - A second Polo Patron has made a major commitment to Wellington, FL with the purchase of a large parcel of land in Wellington Preserve. Previously, public records show that Zacara Farm had also purchased over 100 acres in Wellington Preserve in the past year. The property had once been considered for the relocation of the equestrian showgrounds and subsequently sat idle for sometime due to its connection with the insolvent insurer, CLICO (Bahamas). The remaining 261 acres, some of which are currently under contract according to Diane Jenkins, the listing agent, are well positioned to attract additional polo aficionados and other equestrian uses. Smuggled Horses in West Texas Found to be Diseased AUSTIN, (TAHC) – U.S. Border Patrol agents recently seized 10

Lew explaining how to do a set of templates of your horses back to take saddle shopping. Lew Pewterbaugh • Bandera, TX (830) 328 0321 • (830) 522 6613 saddlerlew@ • Available for individual or group saddle tting & clinics. Will gladly work with trainers, stables & other clinicians to help with saddle tting issues.

THE PERFECT SLOWFEEDING SYSTEM • Vet recommended to help with obesity, colic, insulin resistance, ulcers & stall vices • Many sizes available Redu hay waste and • Reduces saves money • Ideal for trailers, shows and camping


adult horses and four yearlings as they attempted to enter Texas illegally by walking across the Rio Grande River near Indian Hot Springs, in southern Hudspeth county, south of El Paso. The animals were turned over to the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal Plant Health Inspection Service, Veterinary Service (USDA/APHIS/ VS) officials, who tested the horses in Presidio, Texas for a number of disease conditions that are considered foreign to the U.S. All 10 of the adult animals tested positive for Equine Piroplasmosis (EP). EP is routinely found in Mexico and numerous other countries around the world, but is not considered to be endemic to the U.S. The blood borne protozoal disease can be fatal to horses and could create major constraints to interstate and international movements if left undetected. EP does not affect humans.



“Finding Your Dream Horse”

The most important thing to remember is that this is YOUR dream horse. Consider what role and purpose your new horse will fill. Then ask yourself the following questions, and answer them honestly and accurately, before you go looking for your horse:


he time has finally come! You’ve hoped, dreamed, planned, and saved for this moment, Now, you’re finally ready to purchase your horse. Whether it’s your first, your last, or any horse in between, the excitement...the anticipation...the possibilities...can make it hard to keep our emotions in check when researching and making this allimportant decision. One moment, we are calmly perusing a list of prospects... the next, feeling rushed to make an offer before our “Dream Horse” gets away! How can we enjoy the process, without making an irreversible mistake?

Do you want a “specialist” or a “jack of all trades”? If you want to show and place

highly in a particular discipline, such as Western Pleasure, Cutting, Reining, etc., you will need a horse that has been bred to move and/ or react in a particular way. While it is true that “You can’t ride papers”, there is no substitute for starting with an animal whose appropriate instincts and qualities have been instilled and emphasized by generations of specialized breeding. If you’re going into speed or rodeo events, you will need a horse that has a combination of speed, strength, and agility, yet still has a quiet enough mind to handle the pressure of the repeated situation of having to step into an arena,

instantly ready to perform at speed, without “losing it” mentally. This takes a unique mix of qualities that are now being bred for by many proficient breeders. In English events, such as Hunter Under Saddle, Hunter/ Jumper, Eventing, and Dressage, there is a broader variety of breeds, and cross-breeds, that can fill the competitive bill. Much depends, however, on what level of competition you intend to compete in. For entry level and novice rail classes, as long as a horse likes to go on the bit, extends stride with energy and lightness, collects, and transitions in balance when asked to, they should have a chance of scoring well. Likewise, in the entry levels of Hunter/ Jumper competitions, a horse’s good balance, nice changes, rhythmic, even stride, and confident, quiet way of jumping are more important than its breeding. Similarly, in the lower levels of Dressage, willingness and athleticism in a way of going that is natural for an individual horse, are more important than a specific “style” of movement reflected through its breeding. However, as a competitor progresses up the levels or divisions in either of these disciplines, the

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horse’s “style”of movement becomes more important. In this case, it is important to find a horse that is bred to naturally move in a way that the judges will reward. Be realistic and honest with yourself about your goals, abilities, and budget, if you are choosing a horse for this purpose. If competition is not your top priority, chances are, you’re looking for more of a “jack of all trades” type of horse- one that you can safely trail ride over the weekend, then help your neighbor work cattle off of when asked to. You may even want to go over some low jumps on a whim, or enter a local show just for the fun of it. In this case, your prior knowledge of the horse’s behavior and capabilities are the most important consideration. If you haven’t known the horse over time, ask to ride the horse, more than once, and in different situations. It is not important that the horse have a specific line of breeding in this case, but it should be sound, move at least somewhat athletically, and be intelligent, calm, and willing. What is your skill level?

Be honest with yourself, and accurate when describing your skill level to

potential sellers. This goes not only to being able to ride a particular horse, but also to understanding horsemanship and training well enough to maintain a horse’s skill, to continue the progress of a younger horse’s training, or to correct issues quickly, should they arise. A horse’s personality comes into play with this also, since there are horses which are quite talented or athletic, but which will “try” you more readily, while others may not be quite as sharp in a particular discipline, but are more willing and compliant when ridden. (You can sometimes find the best of both in a horse, but not always.) Will you be the sole rider/ handler of your horse, or will you be sharing it with others?

If the horse will be just yours to ride and to handle, you need consider only your own skill level and abilities when evaluating it. If, however, you will be sharing it with others, you must find a horse which tolerates a variety of personalities and skill levels, and which has no unsafe habits on the ground or when ridden. In addition to considering the questions above, remember to seek advice from you trusted source. By trusted source, I mean one, maybe two people whom you have,

He has the mind



over time, come to trust and respect in your horsemanship endeavors. Explain to them what it is you are looking for, and how you want to use and enjoy your horse. Discuss your budget, ask them if it is realistic, and if so, where to look for prospects. Arrange for them to accompany you to any appointments. If they detect any “red flags”, respect their advice and pass on that horse, or check it out thoroughly to resolve it. Conversely, ignore unsolicited advice from well-meaning, but distracting sources. Everyone gets excited when someone’s going to get a new horse, and most people think they have something important to say about it. Remember, this is Your Dream Horse, not theirs. Their dream horse, might be your nightmare! Take your time finding your dream horse, and have a vet-check done before you purchase it. You’ll have lots of time afterward to Enjoy the ride! hB

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heart If only he had

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he Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) provides the guidelines that assist feed manufacturers in formulating horse feeds and determine what information must be listed on feed tags (labels). When choosing a bagged horse feed, it is very important to consider the forage source first. Then choose the concentrate feed that will supply any nutrients lacking in the forage in an appropriate amount of daily feed. The feed tags will identify the class of horse for which the feed is designed, the guaranteed analysis and ingredients included in the feed, and the feeding instructions and feeding By Judith A. Reynolds, Ph.D., P.A.S., Dipl. A.C.A.N. rates for optimum use of the feed (see Equine Nutritionist, Product & Technical Manager, Figure 1). ADM Alliance Nutrition

“Horse Feed Tag Information:

The feeding rate is a very important part of the feed tag. It is listed within the instructions for feeding section at the bottom or on the back of the tag. All What feeds have the vitamins/minerals formulated for an ideal feeding rate, so feeding too little won’t meet the needs for those nutrients and feeding too much is not recommended due to possible toxicities and because it would be unnecessarily expensive.

Does it Really Mean?”

If possible, choose a feed you can use at the correct feeding rate, such as three or six pounds of feed per horse daily (should be fed in two or more daily meals). If there is none available that provides the ingredients and guarantees you want and the correct energy and/or protein content, you have two options. Either feed less of a feed with a higher feeding rate than you prefer and add a balanced salt/vitamin/mineral supplement. An example would be to feed four pounds per day of a feed with a six pound daily feeding rate and add an ounce of a salt/ vitamin/mineral product with a three ounce/day feeding rate. The other option is to feed the maximum of a feed with a feeding rate that is too low for your horse’s needs and provide additional energy and/or protein as needed from a supplement. In this case, you do not need to add more vitamins and minerals to the horse’s diet because sufficient vitamins and minerals will be provided in the feed. An example of this option is to feed three pounds per day of


fat premium stabilized rice bran/flax supplement for the additional calories and other benefits. The feed tag will also help you compare prices, but make sure you choose products with similar quality of ingredients and quantity of nutrient guarantees and the feeding rates for your comparisons. Calculating a daily cost per horse on your current feeding program and comparing to any other programs you are considering is a an eye-opening experience and should be the first step in your process of finding the best nutrition program for your horses. Be sure to include the costs of pasture, hay, feeds and all supplements. If you are feeding three or more nutritional supplements, you can probably do better with changes in your forage(s) and feed(s), since providing nutrients with supplements in small containers usually costs more than providing them with forages and feeds.

Look carefully at the ingredient lists. The ingredients section of feed tags can be organized in two ways, descriptive terms and collective terms. When a collective term is used, individual ingredients within that group cannot be listed on the label (AAFCO, 2009). Therefore, tags must contain either descriptive terms or collective terms, but not both for an ingredient category. Descriptive Terms: When all individual ingredients (oat groats, soybean hulls, alfalfa meal, potassium iodide) within an ingredient category are clearly spelled out, it ensures that what is recorded on the tag is actually included in the bag. With this method, feeds stay fairly uniform from batch to batch and week to week. However, costs of feed may vary substantially as ingredient costs change.

a feed with a three pound recommended feeding rate and add one pound of a 20%

Collective Terms: Collective terms are general classifications of ingredients by origin, which perform a similar function, but do not imply equivalent nutritional values or digestibility in different animal species. Examples of collective terms are: protein products, grain products, grain by-products, roughage products and forage products. With collective terms, a grouping of

ingredients is listed that may contain any of over thirty different ingredients and can legally change from batch to batch, as long as the nutrient guarantees are met. The reason for using collective terms is that a manufacturer may substitute ingredients based on what is either available or least expensive, yet meet the nutrient guarantee on the tag. Disadvantages are that the equine digestive system is sensitive to changes in ingredients and each ingredient has a different digestibility in horses. Using collective terms allows for a lot of formulation changes from one bag to the next, and one week to the next for the same feed. It also allows the manufacturer to use non-nutritious fillers without naming them on the tag in order to reduce the cost of the feed. I do not recommend the use of collective terms for horse feeds. If you choose to use feeds labeled with collective terms, it is best to obtain feed from reputable manufacturers with established protocols for reviewing and approving ingredients and suppliers who provide only high-quality ingredients. The exercises of reviewing and comparing feed tags and calculating daily costs per horse should help you feel more comfortable with your choices of feeds based on their nutrients, ingredients and cost. hB

For more information about the feeding and care of horses, visit ADM Alliance Nutrition’s online equine library at www.grostrong. com. For free feeding suggestions for your horses, call the Equine Nutrition HELPLINE at 800-680-8254.

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“Retired? Or Just Tired Again?”

made saddles look really good in pictures, but beware. They are made with YOUR money more in mind than honest value. I know the Indian made saddles will eventually improve as consumers get more educated and demand better performance, just as many of the Mexican saddle manufacturers have moved away from the cheap “border saddle” to some of the finest saddles you will find today.

thought when I sold Bunkhouse Leather, I’d have time to ride and take care of the horses and take care of the ranch, etc. It turns out the money doesn’t go anywhere near as far as it should, and things haven’t worked out like I expected. I’ve done a few private saddle fittings and a couple of saddle fitting clinics that came off pretty well, and I have one ecstatic ACTHA Champion who loves that I was able to make a pad that would allow her to use her favorite saddle on her favorite horse. In trying to help saddle fit customers find saddles that fit, I’m finding a whole new type of back that no production saddle maker is seeming to make a saddle tree for.

times. Fortunately, I’ve found a way to do it that works really well, and when we’re done, you can just cover it all with an inexpensive thin saddle blanket to make it pretty.

We can help with a custom pad, but it involves cutting and gluing and pulling the saddle off and on several

I’ve been amazed at the amount of junk available on places like eBay and Craigslist. So many Indian


Horseback Magazine’s Saddle & Tack Editor

I sat in a roping saddle in San Antonio last week that I would compare to any Cactus, Double J, Martin, even Coats. It was made with really nice leather, I was told Hermann Oak, with exceptional tooling, real sheepskin, all stainless hardware, copper rivets, - all the hallmarks of a well made saddle. The tree was a rawhide covered wood tree with a varnished finish, and a ten year warranty, and a hand formed leather ground seat. It sat better than most Texas made saddles. The price was good for a really good saddle, at

a reasonable $1595.00. When you look at the cost of a well made saddle and compare it to the new saddles on eBay, you will see that they cannot make a good saddle for what they are selling them for, so what exactly are you getting? A well made saddle will use a little over two sides of leather. Wholesale price of a decent skirting leather side will be $135 to $160.00. Let’s say you build a smaller saddle that you can get by with two sides of leather. That’s $270.00, minimum. A production tree from a reputable tree maker will run $125 to $225.00. Custom trees will run to $400.00. So back to minimums, $270.00 leather, $135.00, tree. That’s $405.00. Stirrups, about $50.00 for rawhide laced nylon stirrups. Hardware, about $45.00, that’s $500.00, and you haven’t even picked up a hammer or knife. Your better hand made saddle makers usually calculate a minimum of $700.00 for material at their wholesale cost. Add to that about 40 hours labor per saddle. If you’re

talking production line with hourly workers, if you pay them $8.00 per hour, it cost the business owner closer to $10.00 per hour even with minimal benefits. That’s $320.00 for a total so far of $820.00 or more. Now you add in overhead and a small profit, and you can see that a really good saddle is going to cost in the $1200 to $1800.00 price range. Now when you’re dealing with a custom maker where you have one guy doing the work, and you add hand tooling, and a lot of ground work in the seat, a nice laced Cheyenne roll, etc, you’ve added ANOTHER 40 hours to the saddle, and that custom maker is not going to be working for $10 per hour! That’s when you get into the high dollar saddles. When you deal with a reputable saddle maker you usually pay for what you get and you get something to be proud of. So what do you get when you buy a beautiful, brand new saddle for $323.95? You get inexperience with no knowledge of what the end product is going to be used for or the

stresses it will be subjected to. You get inferior trees that are not fitted to American horses at all. Inferior light weight urine tanned leather, tooled by people who have never seen good tooling or else embossed with a plate to look like it was tooled. You get slippery polyester fleece that won’t stay in place on the horses back. I will say a lot of those saddles are pretty in pictures. Some of them are as pretty as say, a nice new specially priced doublewide, being sold as repossessed from an owner who is now in jail, well you’ve seen the ads. Many of these imported saddles are made on lightweight hollow fiberglass trees that won’t hold a nail, staple, or screw. So they put a bolt through the tree with a piece of neoprene under the saddle so you don’t feel the nut on the bottom. What do you think happens when you sit your butt in that saddle? The foam compresses and the nuts dig into your horses back, Then your horse starts acting up, and you sell him because he just started ACTING GOOFY WHEN Tack Talk - Con’t. on pg. 42



Tack Talk - Con’t. from pg. 41

YOU TRIED TO RIDE HIM. Any horse that was good and then starts doing things wrong, you need to look to your tack or your riding. Your horse is probably trying to tell you something. That would make a pretty good column. What would your horse tell you if he could talk? Anyway, it’s time to draw to a close. This kinda started out about my retirement. So what have I been doing? Well I hauled a cow elk to a local ranch the other day. This was the same elk of the famous elk roping incident of a few years ago. Anyone want to hear that story? I’m working on an interior design project in Austin. I helped put a roof on the new stage at the Frontier Times Museum in Bandera, and helped the museum clean some saddles. Of course, that’s all volunteer work. I’ve already mowed the horse pasture twice trying to get rid of the weeds, but it’s tough to find enough money to buy gas for the tractor. The future will involve a new website for the saddle fitting services and clinics. There’s so little knowledge about what to look for, and there’s a lot of misinformation. Call if you need help. I love it when we get a good story! hB

Bandera’s Lew Pewterbaugh has been called the most knowledgeable saddle and tack authority in the Southwest. For private fitting consultation call (830) 328-0321 or (830) 522-6613 or email:


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t was a beautiful day and things were slow at work. Her thoughts kept wandering back to the beautiful bay mare she loved so much. As the clock slowly ticked Sherry began to realize it would be okay to leave work early and take a little time for herself today. That’s when she decided to seize the day and go out to enjoy her horse. She said her goodbyes and slipped out the door on a mission of joyful anticipation. An hour later, with halter and treats in hand, Sherry happily marched into the pasture to catch her precious Prissy. As she approached her gorgeous bay, Prissy looked her in the eye and made it perfectly clear that she had her own idea of how she was going to spend her day. She and her buddies tossed their heads and cantered away exuberantly. After a long and frustrating attempt to catch her horse, Sherry begrudgingly enlisted the help of another horseman. Within minutes, Prissy was being led in for Sherry to ride. Why is it that some people have command of the horse from the start while others do not? Success in the saddle begins long before you put your foot in the stirrup. From the moment you approach a horse, you


“Control Your Horse” need to show that you are in control mentally and physically. Horses respond to kindness and logic, but are also ruled by animal instincts of fight or flight. Approaching a horse needs to be done in a nonthreatening way. Looking a horse in the eye alerts him that he has been targeted and puts him on guard. When you hold your halter out, he knows you’re going to take control away from him and he may not be in the mood to get caught. The next time you go to catch a

horse, start by putting the halter discretely over your shoulder with the lead rope on top for quick and easy access. Try walking a path that is near the horse but would take you past him while looking away from him. If he is suspicious, drop your eyes, bend down and pretend to look at something on the ground. Make him curious. If there are other horses in the pasture, stop to pet them and turn your side or even your back to him to make yourself less threatening. Don’t be in a hurry. Work your way nearer to him in a bit of a zigzag fashion or even creep backwards towards him slowly. When you can get close enough, walk quietly up to his side as if you are going to pass him, pause by his neck and slip the rope around his neck by passing it from one hand to the other as you wrap your arms around his neck as if to hug him. Then loop the end of the rope in one hand to hold him so he can’t walk away, place your other hand on his nose for control and quietly slip the halter over his head. Treats should only be given after you catch him. Words of caution though; don’t let the other horses know you have treats or you could end up being stampeded. Just as horses form relationships with each other, horses and riders will always form relationships too.

Whether you intend to or not, one of you will establish the leadership role very quickly when you approach a horse and for safety’s sake, it had better be you! Body language becomes extremely important as you enter close proximity to your horse. Once you have successfully caught your horse, you need to exhibit your dominance by keeping him at a safe distance when you are leading, standing next to, or grooming him. If he crowds you, push him away with your hand. If you push against him gently, he should easily step away from you. Be insistent about this. If he doesn’t move, teach him to respect your space. Systematically push on each of his hips and shoulders until he moves over. If he chooses to lean against you instead of stepping away, you may have to push very hard with your elbow or your whole body until he gives up. When he moves away, you need to stop pushing immediately and praise him. Keep repeating this until he consistently moves away easily. It shouldn’t take long for him to figure out that you are in charge. In the wild, horses will establish dominance by instinctually pushing each other until one backs down. For safety’s sake you want to make sure you are at the top of the pecking order with your horse. Every horse should be able to stand quietly for grooming, tacking and mounting. If he won’t, you are probably not in complete control and riding him could pose further safety issues. What happens on the ground usually carries over into the saddle. Always make sure your horse is paying attention and respecting you enough to be obedient. If a horse really doesn’t want to do something, it’s pretty hard to force him. You need to make him want to do what you say by giving him a reason to respond in a positive manner. First, he needs to understand what you are asking and then he needs to know that he will be safe and comfortable when he does it.

By putting pressure on the horse to prompt a response and then reducing or eliminating the pressure when he gives you a positive response, he learns to control his own comfort level by doing what you want. When you start to work with a horse, test it each time by asking it to do simple things such as walking on command or moving off your leg without resistance so you have his attention. By establishing control over him with simple tasks, you set the tone for him to be obedient. Control over

your horse is of utmost importance for enjoying your time with your horse. And more quality time is something every horseman wants with his horse! hB

Cathy Strobel has over 30 years of experience as a trainer, judge and clinician and can be reached at Southern Breeze Equestrian Center at (281) 431-4868 or June 2012 - HORSEBACK MAGAZINE



“Ponying On Trails” Should I or Shouldn’t I?

: I’m going to advise you against ponying - that’s the term for leading one horse from a ridden horse – for several reasons.


I have had my horse on a conditioning program for several months. We ride 5 miles a day, rain or shine. His condition has improved and he looks very good. Another horse here also needs exercise but I only have time to work one horse per day. A friend suggested taking the other horse along on a lead rope when we go trail riding. I have never done this. Would you recommend it? What training/safety issues should I consider before doing it? Both horses are older, well broke and calm. The one I would be leading has a tendency to spook at times. The one I’m riding is very calm. Both are well trained in leading with the halter. The trails we ride are mostly on logging roads and forest trails. My main objectives are to give the horses some exercise, have fun and stay safe.

1) Ponying won’t allow you to focus on your riding, your position, or on working the horse you are riding. Both horses may get a little exercise, but not much - you’d do better to take each one out alone for half an hour. 2) Ponying requires that your “pony horse” - the one you’re riding - be absolutely dead calm and reliable, not just about being ridden and neck-reined, but about ropes, weights, pressure, and the sustained presence of the other horse. 3) Safe ponying requires that no bizarre or strange or unusual or sudden events occur - nothing that could possibly spook either of the horses. None of us can ever guarantee that nothing strange or scary will occur, so…

4) If you decide to try ponying anyway, dress for the occasion: Strong gloves for you, because even a small lead-rope-burn can hurt for a long time, and a good, fully-rigged (flank cinch and connector attached) roping saddle for your horse, because you don’t want to fly into the air or end up on your horse’s side instantly if the other horse stops whilst your horse is still moving. No matter how stout your horse is, he can’t keep the other horse from pulling you out of the saddle - even a foal can do that, given the right speed and angle. 5) If you’re desperate to try ponying, do it at home in a pasture so that you can safely drop the lead rope if necessary, without worrying that the suddenly-loose horse will end up in the road, in someone’s yard, or careening into another rider’s horse. And don’t experiment with ponying when you’re alone. 6) Fasten the lead rope to a longeing cavesson, not a halter. You’ll have more control (and less risk of damaging the other horse’s outside eye. 7) Keep the other horse on your right, its head level with your horse’s shoulder. You should have the lead rope in your right hand, and your reins (and the tail end of the leadrope) in your left hand. Just like leading a horse from the ground, or walking a dog on a leash: Your right hand holds the middle of the leash, left hand holds the end, and no part of the leash (or lead rope) is wrapped around any part of your body. 8) Until you’ve become tremendously proficient at ponying, don’t even think of going faster than a walk.


9) When you’ve become tremendously proficient at ponying, you can ask for a more energetic walk, but stay at a walk. 10) If you’re not sure what the other horse will do - and you are never sure, believe me - then take every possible precaution. Double-check your cinch before you mount, and again before you allow anyone to hand you the lead rope. Remember: Once you begin, you won’t have a free hand until you finish. If your nose itches, good luck! 11) Don’t try ponying on the trail. If you’re out on the trail, you’ll try to hang on to the other horse, and all that will happen is that you’ll get pulled out of your saddle and, quite possibly, hurt. At that point, you could lose both horses - and your health or your life. It’s just not worth it. Any ponying should be done in an enclosure where you can safely drop the lead rope and save yourself. 12) Some risks are worth taking; others really are not. The circumstances you’ve described would put the risks of ponying on the trail into the “not worth it” category. If you fall and your horse gets loose and runs off into a real road (or into someone else who’s on the logging road) and causes an accident, that’s bad. If the horse you are ponying gets loose and runs off, etc., that could be worse. So, although you could pony on the trail, it’s not worth it, so please don’t. hB

Dr. Jessica Jahiel is the best selling author of Riding For The Rest Of Us.

Horse Bites - Con’t. on pg. 45



“It’s Funny When it Happens to Someone Else!”

and I have already written about him, so I will use his name.

suppose my friends could tell some pretty good stories about me, maybe someday one of them will. But, since this is my article.....I get to tell stories about them. I may or may not change the names to protect the not so innocent. If you were there with me, you will know whose name is real and not!

One of the requirements of the course we took at Lamar, was working your colt on the weekend. If you weren’t going to be there you had to find some one to work it for you. Typically there were a few of us that didn’t go home much or in this case lived locally, that fell into this duty. There was a young lady that went home and she asked one of my buddies (we’ll call him Rod) to work her horse. Now, I don’t know if there were ulterior motives for him to work her horse or not. But, he did say he would do it. Something he would regret for the next day or two or five!

This one has some second hand info from another friend (does that make him a second hand friend? Just asking, I don’t know.) He was the one who actually saw the incident happen

Rod and Guy were both working in separate round pens. They were side by side, and it was plenty cold. Cold enough that you could see your breath in the air and I was afraid my


weak little mustache was going to freeze off! Needless to say, it was only Rod and Guy outside! According to the story Guy tells, the horses were feeling pretty good. Snorting and pitching around the pens! At some point Rod got a little frustrated at the colt he was working and started pushing him a little. Guy said he heard a “thump” and saw Rod get kicked in the “ $%^& “! Yep, you guessed it! Same place as all those people get hit on that funniest videos show. Now, here is where the story starts to get a little fuzzy. According to Guy, he immediately leaped over the two fences to check on Rod. According to Rod, he climbed the first fence and then started laughing so hard he had to stop in between! Who knows what the truth is? Rod always said it was a good thing he only got kicked once. If the horse had kicked again, he would have gotten kicked in the

“Be diligent with your safety around any large animal!”


head (that wouldn’t have been near so funny as the first kick) because he could not stand up or move! Rod wobbled/crawled/was carried to the barn office and laid up the rest of the morning. When I saw him, slowly coming down the stairs, he was as white as a ghost. I wanted to feel sorry for him, I really did. But I couldn’t stop smiling...which eventually turned into laughing... laughing loudly...... Poor ol’ Rod.....he really failed to see the humor in it! We “medicated” him

most of that day and the next two, but it was probably a week before he felt good enough to come back down to the barn. Needless to say, he blamed the horse - and the girl, which I think was just guilt by association. This just goes to prove, it’s always funny when it happens to someone else!

helmet, wear a helmet. If you don’t feel safe riding your horse, spend some time on the ground and gain control and respect there. You are the one responsible for your safety; make sure you understand the risks before climbing on or even being around a horse.

No matter how good a hand you think you are, you are dealing with a live animal. It is not a question of if you will get hurt, but when. Be diligent with your safety around any large animal. Determine what are the acceptable risks? If you feel safe in a

In case you were wondering about ol’ Rod, there is a bright side, there was no permanent damage; Rod had 3 kids later on in life! hB

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Halter Hanger!


owdy, welcome to Cowboy Corner. The year is off to a good start, have had some rain, and the first hay cutting is in the barn. Let’s all pray for more rain, and more hay, and thank the good Lord for what we have already gotten. Have mentioned halters several times in Cowboy Corner, and my preference for the rope tied halters with attached lead

ropes. At my place each horse or mule does not have a leather or nylon halter with a lot of hardware and his name on the noseband. Am sure our choice of halter type surprises no one. Nothing wrong with conventional type halters, but they just don’t fit our operation.

Another advantage to my outfit of rope halters and lead ropes is universal size. Using rope halters, don’t have to worry about having the right one, just whether I have one for each horse. Strength and cost are also advantages, and rope halters are less bulky than conventional strap type halters.

Advantages of the rope type halters are many, but I like the ability to wash the halters and lead ropes when they get dirty and stiff. All of us have tried to use lead ropes that were so stiff that a jerk knot was hard to tie. Remember the ol’ Brazos bottom cowboy trick to cleaning lead ropes and any synthetic material halters, add a cup of laundry detergent and a cup of chlorine bleach to five gallons of hot water and let the ropes and halters soak. A day or two won’t hurt, and after soaking rinse with fresh water. After a good rinsing, wash in the washing machine with some bulky items like towels. If the ropes and halters still seem stiff, soak in a solution of fabric softener and water. One cup of softener to two to three gallons of water should loosen the stiffest ropes.

Since nothing in the world is perfect, rope halters have one issue, how to tie the knot. The halter ties on the left side and the portion from the right, comes from over the horses’ head, behind his ears, and ties in a loop made from the left side of the halter. The knot is important if any strain will be put on the halter and lead rope, and if you plan for the knot to be untied. To make the knot untieable, tie down, not up. Tying up means running the tying end of the halter through the halter loop, then making a half hitch around it, and with little strain the half hitch will seize, and easily become difficult to untie, especially, on a horse that doesn‘t want to stand still. To tie down, run the halter tying end through the loop on the halters’ left side, then make a half hitch around the loop. If you suspect that pressure will be put on the halter, wrap the loop twice before making the half hitch. Tying down rather than tying up limits the possibility of “hatchet knots”, those untied with a hatchet. At the barn, storing these rope halters has always been on some nail somewhere. First thing to do to catch the horses is to find the halters. After all these years, have found a good way to store these rope halters all together, use a garden hose hanger. Garden hose hangers come in all types of materials and some seem too flimsy for ranch use. Have found, a sturdy all metal hose hanger at Tractor Supply, that works great. The hanger is about 12 inches wide and 14 inches tall and will hold over half a dozen halters. Also halters hung on this hose hanger don’t get tangled as easily as hanging on a nail. The hose hanger is available, durable, and affordable. Happy Trails! hB





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Horseback Magazine June 2012  

Vol.19 Number 6

Horseback Magazine June 2012  

Vol.19 Number 6