The Southwest’s Equine Sport & Lifestyle Magazine
Vol. 15, No. 4 April 2008 Priceless
HILLARY DOBBS CNN Anchor Lou Dobb’s Daughter Shattering Records
The Truth About NAIS Really!
Pat Parelli Therapeutic Riding Dr. Angela Chenault Penicillin, Bute and Banamine Abuse Jessica Jahiel Choosing a Trainer Wes White Less is More Lew Pewterbaugh Tradition Versus Technology
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2 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
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April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
4 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
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om some of r f s p e r e v a We'll h uct lines on d o r p e it r o v your fa otions m o r p l ia c e p hand with s s, oxel helmet r T l, e h s a C from ing your r B ! e r o m d Cut Heal an il saddle a r t e e r f r o f trail horse d Tucker n a Y le c ir C fittings with rse wash. o h n io t lu o and an EQ S 6 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
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April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
FROM THE PUBLISHER’S DESK The subject of NAIS is very controversial to say the least, and we are pleased to bring you an article written by Pauline Singleton, a past president of the Greater Houston Horse Council. She has been on top of this issue for many years, and I urge all readers, regardless of your views on this, to please read it. She really brings up some good points for all of us to ponder. If you have comments about this issue, please send them to email@example.com. On March 20, 2008, Peggy Fikac of the The Houston Chronicle wrote a piece titled “Texas may be spared in fiscal storm-State economy growing despite recession fears”. I have to say it was an encouraging change from all the bad news about the economy we are constantly being bombarded with by the national media. State Comptroller Susan Combs was quoted: ‘We do not believe there will be a recession in Texas. That’s pretty much unequivocal,’ also saying that Texas lags six to nine months behind national trends.” Other encouraging comments from Ms. Fikac’s article were “The state benefits, experts say, from economic factors that have outweighed gas pump sticker shock. Other factors in Texas’ favor include rising commodity prices, growing defense spending, a weak dollar benefiting exports and a reputation for a business-friendly environment.” As Ms. Fikac pointed out other economists are more cautious but say the state is in relatively good shape. Dale Craymer, chief economist of the Texas Taxpayers and Research Association had this to say, when asked whether Texas goes into recession depends on “the severity of the national recession, should we have one, and, “If the nation gets the flu, we’re going to get a bad cold,” he said. “If the nation gets a cold, we’ll get the sniffles.” In the article Gov. Rick Perry “voiced concern about the effect higher energy, transportation and grain costs have on cattle, pork and chicken producers.” Is it just me or do any of you feel that we should stop trying to make gas from corn, which is driving the prices up on animal feed, and our basic food supply, and drill our own oil, on our own shores which I would think would help with transportation prices at least until we figure out how to get around with out gas. Then again, years ago we did, we had our horses.
APRIL 2008 10 HORSE BITES 12 PARELLI - Pat Parelli and Steven Long 14 THE HEALTHY HORSE - Dr. Angela Chenault 16 TALKIN’ CUTTIN’ - Gala Nettles 18 Q&A ~ HORSE SENSE - Jessica Jahiel 20 LETTERS TO THE EDITOR 22 TACK TALK - Lew Pewterbaugh 24 HILLARY DOBBS - Cathy Stroebel 28 ON THE SUBJECT OF NAIS - Pauline Singleton 32 THE TEACHER - Wes White 34 BUSINESS BITS 36 HOOF PICKS 38 HAPPY TRAILS - Destinations and Vacations 42 OF HORSES AND KINGS - Jay Remboldt 48 HORSE LAUGHS - Elizabeth Kopplow 50 COWBOY CORNER - Jim Hubbard TEXAS ADVERTISING OFFICES BRAZOS VALLEY BUREAU Diane Holt 936-878-2678 Ranch 713-408-8114 Cell Diane.Holt@texashorsetalk.com CENTRAL TEXAS BUREAU Bobby Reynolds 830-393-7037 Office 210-286-2192 Cell Bobby@texashorsetalk.com Donna Reynolds 830-393-9850 Home 210-286-2084 Cell Donna@texashorsetalk.com
Volume 15, No 4. Texas Horse Talk Magazine is published by El Dorado Funding, P.O. Box 681397, Houston, TX 77268-1397, (281) 447-0772. The entire contents of the magazine are copyrighted April 2008 by Texas Horse Talk Magazine. All rights reserved. Material in this publication may not be reproduced in any form without the expressed written consent of the publisher. Texas Horse Talk Magazine assumes no responsibility for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs and other material unless accompanied by a stamped, self addressed envelope. Texas Horse Talk 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 Texas Horse Talk Magazine, P.O. Box 681397, Houston, TX 77268-1397. Fax: (281) 893-1029 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
8 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
GULF COAST BUREAU Carol Holloway 713-680-8264 Home 832-607-8264 Cell Carol@texashorsetalk.com NORTH CENTRAL BUREAU CORPORATE OFFICE 281-447-0772 281-591-1519 Fax Advertising@texashorsetalk.com CLASSIFIEDS 281-447-0772 Classifieds@texashorsetalk.com
Vicki Long EDITOR
Pamela Sease NATIONAL NEWS EDITOR
Carrie Gobernatz RACING EDITOR
Jay Remboldt CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Dr. Jessica Jahiel Steven Long Gala Nettles Vicki Long Cathy Strobel Pat Parelli Jim Hubbard Lew Pewterbaugh Wes White Dr. Angela Chenault Jay Remboldt Diane Holt Pauline Singleton Elizabeth Kopplow Christina Childs
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
HHHHH Salt Grass Ride Mishap
HHHHH Texas’ Worst Kept Secret By Steven Long The worst kept secret in the Texas equine community is that horse events during the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo are sparsely attended. Those who participate in them quietly grumble that their sport is treated as an afterthought, or worse, that rodeo brass wants to eliminate the horse shows altogether. The horse shows contribute nothing to the rodeo’s scholarship fund and only break even financially. This year when the powers at Reliant Park moved three of its premier horse shows, the Appaloosa, Arabian, and Palomino events to the Great Southwest Equestrian Center in far away Katy, the rumbles of complaint among show types rattled stalls across Houston. A few days into the event the rumbles got louder when a halter class entrant in the Appaloosa Show reared and then collapsed on arena turf. There was no veterinarian on site and a call went out to nearby Katy Equine, a first class medical facility. The horse was subsequently transported to the clinic where it was euthanized. In short, there was no emergency care in the arena when the incident happened, and some participants and volunteers in the show are livid. “Had we been at Reliant Arena in Reliant Park, there would probably have been 15 vets on the property,” said a participant who declined to be identified. “The place crawls with vets.” In fairness, emergency care likely wouldn’t have saved this particular horse, yet the participant continued, “What if it was a horse that could have been saved?” In a written statement, HLS&R told Texas Horse Talk, “There was a veterinarian on call through the Great Southwest Equestrian Center for all Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo events at that location.” Other complaints have bubbled under the surface as well. At Reliant Park, miles from the Great Southwest facility, distances can be daunting for fans wanting to see a horse show, but also trying to take in the livestock show, trade show, carnival, and the daily rodeo in the mammoth 70,000
10 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
seat Reliant Stadium, home of the NFL Houston Texans. The walk is so great that HLSR provides trams for fans determined to see the horses perform. The trams destination is poorly marked. Last year, 1.8 million crossed through the parks turnstiles, almost all of them at the other end of the tramway from the horse shows. Meanwhile, the Astrodome, which housed the world’s largest indoor rodeo from 1966 until the opening of Reliant stadium is not being used for rodeo or horse show events at all. Today the arena floor itself is used as a giant bar called “The Hideout.” For two weeks in March, it’s the world’s biggest beer joint, a far cry from its intended original purpose as a sports venue. However, Joel Cowley, HLS&R executive director of agricultural exhibits, told THT that the Dome is inadequate to house horse show activities. “Reliant Astrodome presents space and logistical issues with regard to conducting a large horse show. Aside from ingress and egress challenges, the floor of Reliant Astrodome is 131,000 square feet. Between stalls, warm up arenas, cattle pens and the main arena, we currently utilize 230,000 square feet of Reliant Arena for our Horse Show activities.” One would think with the drawbacks however, in many ways the Astrodome would be an ideal facility for all of the horse show activities in many ways, including the additional events such as team penning, ranch sorting, two performances of a ranch rodeo, and an expansion of the cutting horse event that have bumped some events to far away Great Southwest Equestrian Center. It would be a lot easier and cheaper to build a barn with stalls to provide additional space for horses than to tear down Houston’s most venerable and recognizable landmark. For that matter, horses could still be housed at the Reliant Arena facility while the Astrodome could be used for all of the events. There is adequate space there for multiple arenas. And participants can ride their horses from one building to the other. After all, isn’t that what horses are for? Texas Horse Talk invites letters to the editor on this issue from participants and fans alike. Send them to email@example.com.
As trail riders were making their way to Houston’s Memorial Park one set of horsemen flirted with a disaster that ultimately proved to be a blessing for a Texas landowner. The Salt Grass Trail Ride left eight acres of the popular 7IL Ranch in flames lit by coals from one of the historic group’s chuck wagons as the ride pulled out. The group is the oldest of the rodeo’s 11 sanctioned rides. It was begun in 1953 by four men. Now hundreds of riders converge on the Bayou City from as far away as the Mexican border. David Reznicek, operator of the popular riding destination said that the fire was a blessing in disguise, telling Texas Horse Talk that burning brings brand new green grass just in time for the influx of spring visitors. The 7IL is open for business and the trails were unaffected by the brief excitement.
HHHHH Proctor becomes new owner of Jäger Ranch after being crowned 2008 Toughest Cowboy Champion The Championship Round of the 2008 World’s Toughest Rodeo featuring Toughest Cowboy presented by Jägermeister was held at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio, and officially brought the 2008 season to an end. In a true test of toughness on this one-of-a-kind rodeo revolution tour, the four finalists had to compete on six head of stock – two bareback horses, two saddle bronc horses, and two bulls – all in the same night to determine the 2008 Toughest Cowboy and to answer the season long question, “Who will win Jäger Ranch?” In the end, it was Washington turned Wyoming cowboy Shane Proctor who was awarded the deed to Jäger Ranch and the iron glove trophy for being crowned the 2008 Toughest Cowboy Champion. Proctor, who currently resides in Powell, now has a new place to call home at his ranch outside Pueblo , Colo. In just its second season, Toughest Cowboy presented by Jägermeister is revolutionizing the sport of rodeo by introducing an exciting and innovative format to audiences across the United States. Unlike other rodeos where riders usually compete in just one discipline, Toughest Cowboy is an unprecedented test of endurance as all competitors must compete in three disciplines in one night (Bareback Riding, Saddle Bronc Riding and Bull Riding). The events feature head-to-head matches throughout the season leading to the playoffs and championship…ultimately crowning someone the Toughest Cowboy Champion.
HHHHH Celebrated sports artist LeRoy Neiman commemorates the legendary Secretariat Adding to its reputation as the signature bourbon of thoroughbred racing, Woodford Reserve, an award-winning small-batch bourbon, is honoring the country’s favorite horse race with the release of its 2008 Kentucky Derby bottle (set to release April 2008). This premium product from the historic Woodford Reserve Distillery in Versailles, Kentucky, has been crafted on the site since 1812, 63 years before Aristides won the inaugural Kentucky Derby. This year’s limited edition Derby bottle and corresponding print celebrate the 35th anniversary of Triple Crown winner Secretariat’s victory in Kentucky Derby 99. The artwork was created by another sports legend, internationally acclaimed artist LeRoy Neiman. Neiman’s vibrant, colorful image captures the speed, beauty, and grace of the great Secretariat running down the stretch of Churchill Downs en route to a record final time of 1:59 2/5 for the Run for the Roses. Secretariat’s record-setting victory won the Kentucky Derby in Louisville, KY, on May 5, 1973. The main image on the bottle features the big red chestnut colt in his distinctive blue and
Horse Bites - Con’t. on pg. 44
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
By Pat Parelli with Steven Long
THERAPEUTIC RIDING TEXAS HORSE TALK: One of the most remarkable and astonishing things in American horsemanship today is the relationship between you and your son Caton. He was profoundly disabled, yet now he embodies what Parelli is all about - growth and learning. I’d like to talk about therapeutic riding. Caton is, or should be, the poster boy for what it can do for the handicapped. PAT PARELLI: It’s been said very often regarding equine therapeutic programs that the outside of the horse is good for the inside of the human. I think also that the inside of the horse is good for the inside of the human. There are all forms of therapy such as hippo therapy which is the actual riding of the horse and benefiting from the horse’s motion, which is great for all types of handicaps, from sprains to trauma. There is
no doubt that the effectiveness is very beneficial for people. The other three things that I think of when I think of therapy are the touch, smell, and sight of a horse. It can really be good for all humans. THT: Cite an example. PARELLI: I know of many police departments that really benefit from having a mounted equine unit. People respond differently to a policeman on a horse. They are actually more friendly. They want to wave. They have a better vision of the officer so it is actually therapy for the civilian. The other situation is in hospitals and senior citizen homes where just having a horse brought back memories and a great feeling for those people. It doesn’t matter what size or kind of horse it is. THT: You have a very personal acquaintance
with what equine therapeutic riding and horsemanship can do for a person with your relationship with your son Caton. PARELLI: It is the therapy of tasking. That is to have not only the benefits of touching the horse with hippo therapy, but the benefits of having the “I am going to go over there and open that gate while riding this horse” experience. This creates the completion of synapses in a person’s mind for anybody with any kind of a challenge as well as for completely able bodied people. When you can do something on a horse, whether it is dragging a post, opening a gate, roping something, whatever it is, the sense of accomplishment you get gives you the completion of mental, emotional, and physical achievement. THT: And this is what you did with Caton? PARELLI: My son Caton is a really great example of this. He has now gotten to where he rides every day with me. You now have to really be in the know to know that he has any physical challenges. He had a stroke when he was 12. He’s now 25. He lost all faculties on the right side of his body. He now has about 85 - 90 percent faculty use, and when he’s on a horse he looks 100 percent. He’s now competing in cutting and reining, and he has won first in reining competition. He competed last week in his first reining cow horse event and placed fifth, two fourths, and a second. THT: He’s got a pretty good riding instructor. PARELLI: Yeah, I think so (laughing). But that feeling of him being able to do all those things, follow a pattern, do what it takes to get a score in cutting, do what it takes to box a cow and go down the fence and circle a cow – and he’s even loping left handed on our roping simulator. Basically, horses complete him.
12 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
Often times when an owner calls me with a problem, they have already tried various methods and remedies to fix the problem on their own. Horse owners are resourceful and have an often extensive network for advice and supplies. Sometimes this is good and sometimes this is bad. An owner should chose carefully who they get advice from and not try to listen to everyone. The internet can be a pitfall since there is no policing of what is written and the author can sound as if they are knowledgeable but you really have no way of knowing for sure. It is best to find a friend or trainer that you can trust and has been successful in the horse business a long time. Many miracle cures touted by people to-
Penicillin, Bute, and Banamine Abuse
day only seem to work because even if you do nothing a lot of conditions will get better on their own with no intervention. Many old time remedies were used because there was nothing else available and newer products may be better. However, there are many that have stood the test of time and any improvements attempted would only add to the expense. A good relationship with your veterinarian, trainer or knowledgeable friend can help sort these out. A common problem I see with owner treatment is inappropriate use of medications. In particular are antibiotics, phenylbutazone (bute) and Banamine (flunixin meglamine). Penicillin is the most abused and misused drug out there
and this is why there is so much drug resistant bacteria out there. Because it is over the counter, any one can get it, read the bottle and give it themselves. The problem with that is the dosage given on the bottle is no longer used and is way too low. Also, owners tend to give it only once a day because so and so said that was all that was needed. Add to that, owners will commonly give penicillin only three days and then quit once the horse looks better. Penicillin MUST be given twice daily and for at LEAST five days. There is no such thing as a single penicillin shot that will last for three days in horses. This only works in cattle. Never give an antibiotic for less than five days unless your veterinarian tells you to do so. All you are doing is killing off the weaker bacteria and leaving the strong ones to survive. Now you may say that you have done this many times and have had no trouble just giving penicillin once daily for three days. Remember my statement that many conditions can be taken care of by the horseâ€™s own immune system with no intervention on your part. Also, always remember to check for blood before injecting every time and if this horse moves while injecting. I get at least one call a year from an owner having a horse that reacted because of getting penicillin in the blood stream, usually fatal. It amazes me how many owners have large bottle of banamine on hand and donâ€™t know that you only need to give 5cc for 90% of colics. If you give 10cc of banamine right off the bat it can mask a serious situation such as an impaction for many hours. I have even seen some owners give 20 and 30cc over the course of a day before calling me out at night. By then the horse is very sick and the owner will say that the horse got better with each shot then would relapse. To this I will say that the horse was not better, you were only hiding the symptoms. I strongly recommend give only 5-6cc, if this amount does not stop the colic within 30-45 minutes then your veterinarian needs to treat the horse. Think of it as a diagnostic tool. If he gets better with 5cc then he wasnâ€™t that sick and you can worry less and it is cheaper too. Bute is commonly overused because owners think of it as aspirin and almost everyone keeps bute around. A rule of thumb is that if the horse is not better within three days of stall rest and 2 grams of bute for a 1000lb horse once a day, then it needs to be seen by a veterinarian and/or a farrier. Never give more than 2 grams of bute in a day without consulting with your veterinarian as it can cause stomach and kidney problems. Be mindful of horses that are less than 1000lb and dose accordingly and when in doubt, give less and not more. Never take bute for yourself as it can cause bone marrow shutdown.
Dr. Angela Chenault owns La Paloma Equine Clinic in Waller and services the surrounding areas.
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April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
TOUTS FROM THE PADDOCK Future Cutter Born Congratulations to Troy and Jamie Babcock, Wheelock Tx., on the birth of Alexus “Lexy” Lena Babcock. Lexy was born February 6 weighing in at 7 lbs 2 oz 20 inches long. Happy grandparents are Mr. & Mrs. Jim Smith, Sharon and Randy Butler and Jim Babcock. Send your congrats to the new family at P.O. Box 245, Wheelock, Tx., 77882. How about some inspiration? Mr. June Mitchell, who ran Helen Grove’s Virginia operation for years, is now 82 years young, living in New Mexico since his retirement, and still helping others work cattle! Hmmm, that makes the complainin’ that sometimes comes from those of us who are younger appear really foolish, doesn’t it? You can drop a note to June and his wife Beth, at P.O. Box 1241. Estancia, NM 87016. Congratulations to American Quarter Horse Association President Frank Merrill who was recently honored when the United States Equestrian Team Foundation announced he was one of its four new Board of Trustee members. To become a board member, an individual has to have a trail of significant equine related contributions, and Merrill of Purcell, Oklahoma., definitely has that. For four decades he has owned and bred some of the greatest horses in the equine industry at Windward Stud, a
breeding facility owned by Merrill and his wife Robin in Purcell. The couple sold the operation in October 2006 to Bill, Barbara and Lisa Cowan, of Havre, MT and today Merrill serves as CO-CEO of Cowan Select Horses LLC at Windward Stud Ltd. The United States Equestrian Team, established as a not-for-profit organization, helps teams to represent the United States in international competition. They provide funding for not only high performance competition, but also for training, coaching, travel and educational for the competitors and horses. Several major NCHA shows, including the NCHA Cuttings held in conjunction with the Southwestern Exposition and Livestock Show held in Fort Worth and the NCHA World Finals held in Amarillo, are now history. The Southwestern Exposition and Livestock Show was held Jan 11–Feb 3 with 136 entries competing in the NCHA classes and 108 competing in the AQHA classes. Weatherford Trainer Lindy Burch won the open NCHA class showing Bet on Freckles, sired by her stallion Bet On Me, while Paula Wood, wife of trainer Kobie Wood won the non pro class showing Donas Cool Cat. The $10,0000 championship went home with Foster Johnston of Lubbock who competed on Incredi Babe while 16-year-old Denver Mead, from Aledo showed his gelding The Magic Dance Man to win the $50,000 Amateur Class. In the AQHA competitions, Ms Mimosa, shown by trainer Robert Rust won the Senior Championship while the mare’s owner, Stephanie Haymes-Roven won the Amateur class on her. Stephanie had recently purchased her mare from Rust. Trainer Kathy Daughn of Gonzales and won the Junior AQHA riding Turning Black ‘N Blue. It was deja vu in the American Paint Horse Association, when another horse, Smart N Stylish also took two championships at the show. The stallion won the APHA Senior class with Weatherford trainer Rick Mowery in the saddle, and then carried Rick’s wife Shelly to the Amateur champi-
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onship. Winning the APHA Junior class was A Tari Bobcat ridden by Rodney Price. A Tari Bobcat is owned by Glen Watson of Paris. We’ll share the world Finals championships with you next month. The NCHA Super Stakes is an April event, kicking off April 1 at the Will Rogers Coliseum in Fort Worth and continuing through April 20. It is the second major NCHA show for the three-year-old horses that debuted at the NCHA Futurity last December. One of the horses that will be carefully watched is Highbrow CD, the 2007 NCHA Futurity Champion. Should Highbrow CD win the Super Stakes, then return to win the Derby in July, he will become the Triple Crown Winner, an illusive title to win. Since the inception of the Triple Crown, only three horses have won the title. HIghbrown CD, however, has proven he is hard to beat. Already this year he has won the Augusta Futurity and the Tunica Futurity, something that none of the other Triple Crown winners accomplished. By the way, while Arthur Nobel owned the horse during the NCHA Futurity, new owners, as shared in a previous column, are Chris and Staci Thibodeaux, Jennings, LA. Of course aged events can play havoc with weekend cutting schedules – as can schedules from other associations. That’s a problem that the Central Texas Cutting Horse Association has recently encountered. Because of the Super Stakes as well as a another weekend association, the Bluebonnet CHA, the Central Texas CHA shows which were scheduled for April 18th -20th in Gonzales have been cancelled. Instead, the next show for the CTCHA will be held May 16-18 in Gonzales. During that show Hy O Silver buckles will be awarded in the 50 Amateur, 20,000 Non-Pro, 10 Amateur, and 2,000 Limited Rider class. A Jim Reno trophy will be awarded to the Youth Circuit Champion and circuit awards will be given in every class.
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
CHOOSING A TRAINER
I have a young QH Pacer cross gelding that I want to start lightly this year, just walking and trotting under saddle, with brief trail rides once or twice a week. I have talked to a lot of trainers and found one that I really connected with. I watched her working horses and liked what I saw. She has good credentials and Iâ€™ve called 5 of her clients and gotten rave reviews. But Iâ€™m still doubtful. First, she says that she can have him trail safe in 30 days. Second, she insists that I be there every day to train with the horse. She will send me home at end of 30 days with a video and written instructions on work I should continue to do with him. She thinks that because of his breeding (Pacer cross) that maybe I should
18 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
make him into a Racking horse, since the Rack is very similar to the pace (both lateral gaits). This seems to make sense to me, however I am concerned that 30 days is not enough time. I would prefer to train him western as my interest is mostly trails. I am 50 yrs old not really interested in showing, just want a good calm horse that I can ride all over this mountain during summer and fall for fun. My horse is my stress relief and is a big spoiled baby. He has his own radio and night light, eats good quality hay and grain and gets loved on and attended to with a lot of affection and with the knowledge that I am the head of the herd! I have invested a lot of time in this boy and
don’t want to mess it up now. He trailers, clips, accepts tack, stands for the farrier, lowers his head on command and accepts the bit, backs, moves over and even stands still for me to mount in the stall occasionally (sort of gives me a quizzical look, as if to say what are you doing up there) small engines, like the snow blower, lawn mower, weed whacker only make him curious. He is not afraid of anything, and will let me do anything I want with him. I want to be sure that I choose the right trainer for him. Is it possible to have him trail safe in 30 days??? Does taking him to the rack if he paces sound sensible to you. Am I expecting too much too soon?
Selecting a trainer is a big project, and it sounds as though you’ve done your homework. You’ve found someone whose methods appeal to you. She has had “rave reviews,” you’ve seen the horses she produces, you’ve watched her work, and you like what you’ve seen. This sounds good. She insists on working with you and your horse - this sounds even better. The prospect of a video and written instructions – that’s great. I agree that “Trail safe in 30 days” is an odd expression. Why not just ask the trainer precisely what she means by that? I’m sure she doesn’t mean that your horse, or any horse, will be bear-proof, hunter-proof, and ATV-proof in thirty days (or 300 days, or 3000 days). Differ-
ent trainers have different definitions of “greenbroke” and “broke to ride”, so always ask your trainer what a term means to her. Ask her what skills your horse will learn in 30 days, and what you can expect at the end of the 30 days. Don’t forget that this is 30 days of you and your horse working together under the trainer’s direction. This is an intensive course and represents almost eight months of weekly lessons (one supervised hour of horse and rider training per week). Thirty hours of real, consistent work that doesn’t overface the horse or the rider can literally turn them both around. There are many, many “training barns” where a horse “in training” will leave after three months or even six months with less actual training time than your 30 days. As for gaits, look at them from the rider’s point of view since you’re the one who will be in direct contact with the saddle. A rack is much more comfortable than a pace. Many trail horses develop their own “trail gait” after a while, and it’s usually something like a foxtrot, a running walk, an amble, or a rack – a smooth, easy, four-beat gait that makes few demands on the horse or the rider. The pace, on the other hand, is a two-beat gait in which the legs on each side move together. It’s not terribly comfortable to ride, because as each pair of legs moves the horse’s body tends to roll from side to side. Some riders say that the movement makes them seasick!
The rack (or singlefoot, or broken amble - it goes by several names) is basically a modified walk. It’s very much like a Tennessee Walking Horse’s running walk, but the hind legs are much less active and thus there is none of the head-nodding that is typical of TWHs. If you can slow a pacing horse’s gait and shift his balance slightly so that the pace becomes broken and the pairs of legs don’t move quite together, the “body roll” tends to disappear and the horse’s gait becomes very smooth. The footfalls are: hind foot, followed by front foot on the same side, then hind foot on the other side, followed by front foot on that side: It’s an easyriding quickstep-shuffle. This gait won’t detract from, or interfere with, his other gaits, and you can certainly ride and enjoy it in a Western saddle. Discuss your concerns with your trainer. Tell that you love your horse, that you have a great relationship with him, that you are not show-ring ambitious, and that you want to ride Western, have fun, and spend most of your riding time on the trails. A good relationship with a horse is a great thing, and you’re right to want to preserve it. A good trainer will understand and support that. And one more thought: If 30 days isn’t enough, you can ask her to work with you and your horse for 60 or 90 days or longer – that will be up to you!
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Ms. Long, Thanks for your interesting, colorful magazine. I read it online every month and I’ve visited a couple of the advertisers/vendors after discovering them in the publication. I was especially glad to see your opinion on the proposed Trans Texas Corridor (TTC) and thank you for taking this editorial stance. Horse owners, and everyone else in Texas, need to become aware of the issues related to this proposed Toll road. Governor Perry vetoed legislation that was passed in the last legislative session that would have protected landowners and provided more compensation when land value is reduced by
20 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
the government’s “taking” of land to build highways like the TTC. Perry is dead set on building this monstrosity and he and his powerful corporate and legal allies intend to make sure that foreign corporate interests manage the toll road and reap the rewards at Texas taxpayer expense. Our sovereignty is being sold to the highest foreign bidders. Despite widespread opposition to the roadway and almost unanimous objection to the project expressed in recent public hearings, it appears that Perry, and the Texas DOT are going to cram this down our collective throat. Everyone needs to contact their state senator and representative to voice their opinion. Thanks again for your effort. ~Mitch Templeton Beaumont, Texas Dear THT I would like to make a comment about Wes White’s column “Giving Medicine” March 2008. I have read this article to many (real working cowboys) many of my family members and friends, accomplished horse people, and
some that are very novice, and we all hope that this was written as a joke, as it was very funny. I know as a trainer myself that there are many folks out there that do not know much but in all my years of training and giving lessons have I run across any one who has reacted that way to worming a horse, if this guy is getting paid for this kind of teaching and is serious about what he writes, all we can say is, God help the horse industry. I have been at this business for a life time and never meet anyone having that anxiety over worming a horse, if this guy has that much trouble he needs to find something else to do because he dang sure isn’t a cowboy at least a real one. How sad to even think of putting himself in the same league. I’ve cowboyed all over Texas, Idaho, Wyoming, this was the best belly laugh I have had in a long time. We work with real wild horse every day and don’t even have that much trouble worming them as this guy proposes, well thanks for the laughs, and hope the teacher can find himself a teacher to really help him. As I said God help the horse industry, if this is what we have to teach these poor unknowing souls. By the way I, really did like the article on color, as I
Letters to the Editor - Con’t. on pg. 23
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TRADITION VERSUS TECHNOLOGY As I sit here typing on this dad-blamed computer which I totally don’t understand, and I must say, cursing at it, I’m thinking about my chosen subject, and wondering how the ancients perceived new methods in their day. The first saddles, developed after years of riding bareback (I presume) were probably developed something like this. Let’s see. I’ve got this big saber tooth tiger skin that I need to get back to the cave, and it will be awkward trying to carry it, and it will get messed up dragging it. I know; I’ll put it on my horse and sit on top of it! O.K. Horses weren’t domesticated until a few months after the saber tooth tigers exited left, but maybe you get the point. As Ralph rode up to the cave explaining how comfortable his new seat was, he had already decided not to trade it for the affections of the beautiful maiden pining for a new saber tooth tiger skin to make a new swimming suit, but instead to keep it for a cushion for his ride.
Anyway, new developments are always looked at with some suspicion. I’m amazed at how many cordura saddles I sell. What’s not to like? They lack tradition. The tradition being a heavy, high maintenance, and expensive (for a good one) beautifully made all leather saddle. Well I wouldn’t want to rope an 1800 pound bull with a cordura saddle, thank you very much! On the other hand, I wouldn’t want to rope a 750 pound corriente with a dried out poorly maintained leather saddle even it’s one of the roping persuasion. On the third hand I would rather go for a trail ride, and as technology is setting us free with so much extra time and I have no time to maintain that really nice leather saddle, why not take a well made cordura saddle that is lightweight, comfortable, easy to maintain (no maintenance to speak of ), affordable, and easy on the horse. I’m not saying cordura saddles are for everyone, but why not let the folks that like them ride them without looking down at them as third class horsemen. Of course, now that I’ve defended them I have to tear some of them down, Anytime something is good, someone who lacks understanding or acquires too much greed is going to say, I can build that cheaper. Then they look for alternatives to cordura, which is an exceptionally strong nylon material of which the first bullet proof vests were made. Neoprene looks a little like leather, is cheaper, comes in colors, it might make a saddle. Somebody says: “Let’s get a hollow fiberglass foreign tree that was patterned on a water buffalo’s back.” It won’t fit? “Let’s put foam on the bottom so it wallows all over, feels soft, and we’ll sell it on eBay for $89.” By the time people realize how bad they are they will have decided horse back riding isn’t any fun from a hospital bed and they’ll sell them. As always, I recommend finding a reliable professional in the field you’re looking at. Not very many trainers are saddle experts although many think they are. Not many saddle experts are horse trainers. Not many horse trainers are riding instructors. Some are. Not many riding instructors are saddle experts or horse trainers. Some are. We’ve all jumped on the bandwagon of the kinder gentler methods of horse training. We’ve seen innovation after innovation in all fields and they’re happening more and more frequently. Some things are an improvement, some only seem to be. Embrace what works for you. I like cordura saddles. In case you are wondering, I ride an 80 year old Heiser that is a beautiful piece of traditional cowboy art.
Lew Pewterbaugh is the owner of the famed Bunkhouse Leather, just off Main Street in Bandera.
22 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
Letters to the Editor - Con’t. from pg. 20 am big into genetics, that one is right on. Thanks for your time ~Gary Witherspoon
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America’s Reigning Queen of the Rein
By Cathy Stroebel
Photos Courtesy of Hillary Dobbs
A steed flies over a Grand Prix jump, a thing of beauty on the circuit. On top of the horse is America’s reigning queen of the horse. Born to privilege, Hillary Dobbs comes from a pleasure riding family, the only member to take competition seriously. The daughter of CNN anchor Lou Dobbs, Hillary is a 19-year-old college freshman who spends four days each week traipsing around the environs of Harvard square, and then hops a plane to Wellington, Florida, or to points abroad, for competitions. Born to privilege and graced with beauty, Dobbs has earned everything through hard work, smarts, tenacity, and a dogged determination to win. She took a few moments with Texas Horse Talk’s Cathy Strobel for a THT exclusive interview. 24 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
CS: Looking at your life, it’s very much like a fairytale from the outside looking in. You came from a prominent family, you’re successful as an athlete, you’re obviously quite intelligent, you’re a beautiful woman, and you’re attending Harvard on top of it all. And we all know that competing in horses takes a lot of time and you’ve competed internationally as well as nationally. I understand you have five horses on the circuit is that right? HD: Yes CS: And you’ve won quite a few Grand Prix classes. Do you know how many? HD: This circuit, (the winter circuit in Palm Springs, Florida at Wellington) I’ve won two. CS: Two, and all together in your career? HD: Six. CS: Six, well that’s great, congratulations! Which one was most important in your mind? www.texashorsetalk.com
HD: I think all of them have been important. I’ve been very lucky this circuit to have won not one, but two of those grand prix, it was just… it was like a dream circuit for anybody of any age, so I feel very lucky to have won both of those, this circuit. You know it’s a rare thing and I’m counting my blessings for that. Winning the Nation’s Cup might have been my biggest this circuit. CS: That’s a big win, for sure. How does it feel to be winning against people who have been jumping since before you were born, you know, and you’re riding against some pretty great names there. You’ve got Beezie Madden, McClain Ward, I mean, there’s a large number of people that are quite successful. HD: Right, no, it’s incredible because …the competition is not only the best in the country but the best in the world. Because you have all of our big names from the United States and internationally renowned riders like Ian Miller, ... Lamond from Canada, Rodrigo from Brazil, Skelton was here, Peter Charles….the riders that I’ve always looked up to, so its really been an incredible experience to compete against them and to be fortunate enough to win a couple along the way. CS: Is there anybody that you consider to have patterned yourself after? HD: No, you know, not one rider. But, it’s a great experience to be riding with these people, because there are so many of them I can watch, and try to emulate that I’ve been watching and studying for years. Riders like Peter Wylde, and Beezie, with their textbook form and there’s so many riders here that I look up to that it’s great to be able to watch them and compete against them and study the way they ride. CS: Did you expect to be this successful at this level? HD: No. (Laughs) I’ve only been doing the Grand Prix since… not even a year, since May of last year. Also, I’ve been showing at this level for, at all these A competitions, since freshman year of high school. So I’ve only been on the circuit, maybe five and a half years. It wasn’t like some of the top riders now. It wasn’t like my riding career was that of Brianne Goutal, or Charlie Jayne. I didn’t have success right away, I was very inexperienced. And Missy and John worked with me for years very patiently, to get where I am now. For me, a turning point came my last show as a junior when I won … but, no, so that’s not something I would have expected ever along the way. And to move up to the next level with my junior jumper horse, for him to grow into the kind of athlete that he is, that’s been a real treat too. It took me longer than a lot of the young riders at this level, but something made sense last year. I just, all of a sudden, things came together with my horses, and my mind, and my training, and I just got it. I’m in a really good place with my horses, and I feel like we’re in the groove and clicking right now. It’s a good feeling for things to come together after five years of Missy and John patiently working with me and never giving up on me. It’s been a long journey. This is not the outcome that I would have dreamed of, obviously one I could have hoped for, but not one I could have expected. CS: At what point did you start your riding? HD: I started riding when I was four. I rode locally in New Jersey until freshman year of high school, and that’s when we made the move to Missy Clark.
Hillary Dobbs - Con’t. on pg. 46 www.texashorsetalk.com
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
26 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
ON THE SUBJECT OF
By Pauline Singleton Equine Texas has largely wallowed in a boiling soup of confusion regarding a new program that the federal government would like to make mandatory for all owners of livestock and horses. Wild rumors have circulated often painting an apocalyptic scenario for horse owners and ranchers. The issue of NAIS is complex. Yet with a little research, we can make an informed decision on whether we, as horse owners, believe it is good or bad for us and our animals. One such reader, an equine health care professional, has done the work to at least dissect the issue, minus the hysteria so often associated with it.
I’ve been mostly silent on the subject of NAIS, the National Animal Identification System. Now I have some thoughts to share.
• NAIS was conceived as a tool to aide the United States Department of Agriculture in tracing livestock which might be involved in a disease outbreak, so that the outbreak might be brought under control. The ultimate goal is to safeguard human lives and economic interests. • NAIS involves identifying premises where livestock is kept and, in many cases, identifying individual animals as well. • There have certainly been some heated debates on the subject in the last couple of years. Legitimate concerns have been raised on both sides of the issue, as well as some rumors that would be downright funny if it weren’t a serious subject. • The strongest arguments against it relate to cost and questions about feasibility. • First of all, NAIS will be costly, and our economy is strained. Can we afford it? • Second, is the government capable of administering such a huge undertaking?
NAIS - Con’t. on pg. 30
28 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
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30 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
Witness the performance of FEMA in the wake of two recent hurricanes. Also note the miserable performance of the USDA in the meat recall that was announced recently. I can’t imagine that anyone missed it, but 43 million pounds of meat were recalled because a California meatpacker broke the law and processed a number of cattle that were unable to stand (“downers”). They were videotaped using abusive methods of handling these cattle that would be offensive to any civilized person, such as jabbing an animal in the eye in an attempt to cause enough pain to inspire the animals to somehow summon enough strength to stand and move under their own power. This atrocity occurred because there was no USDA inspector present. This is not just an animal welfare issue. If a cow is unable to stand, BSE (mad cow disease) should be ruled out, or she shouldn’t enter the food chain. Period. Also, if a cow is thrashing around on the ground at one of these facilities, it is much more difficult to keep her carcass from being contaminated with E. coli or Salmonella, which can lead to human illness and death if consumed. Why was there no inspector present? *ProMED -mail quoted excerpts from a recent Associated Press article that reported that there is an acute shortage of veterinary inspectors. Vacancy rates for these positions average 10-12% nationwide. “In some regions, including Colorado and Texas, a major beef-producing state, the rate hovered around 15 percent last July (2007).” According to Lester Friedlander, a veterinary inspector who left the USDA in 1995, “…he recalled checking up to 220 cows, hour by hour standing on a catwalk above a pen of hundreds of animals. “How can we tell if there’s any facial paralysis or droopy ears? You can’t tell.” Indeed, at that rate, one can’t determine much more than if the cattle are right side up or not. This is unacceptable. If the government can’t properly administer existing programs, can it reasonably hope to do better with NAIS? But even as I raise this question, I am compelled to remind everyone that the United States enjoys a food supply that is relatively safe, abundant and affordable. We are the envy of much of the rest of the world in that regard, and the USDA deserves much of the credit for it. There are arguments in favor of NAIS. Because of BSE (mad cow disease), it would be desirable to be able to trace every single cow from birth to death. Yes, even the neighbor kid’s 4-H project. I say this as a consumer whose favorite meat is beef. If you don’t agree, you need to research BSE . (For example, are you aware of the fact that cooking does nothing to inactivate the prion that causes BSE? This is not like other diseases with which we are familiar.) An alternative would be to test every single cow that is butchered for BSE. If I’m not mistaken, that is what is done in
NAIS - Con’t. on pg. 33 www.texashorsetalk.com
Approx. 106 acres with high rolling hills, mile long views, and paved road frontage on two sides Turn of the century restored antique farm house 4 barns with a combination of 41 horse stalls, groom & tack rooms, office, bathroom and storage Lighted, Covered Arena (200’ x 80’) Outdoor Arena (200’ x 100’) Multiple paddocks and loafing sheds
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
The Teacher By Wes White
LESS IS MORE - AGAIN
I wrote on this subject a few years ago in Texas Horse Talk and I think it needs revisiting. I also plan to reiterate another issue I have discussed in the past - respect. These two topics go hand in
32 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
hand and if we comprehend one it makes comprehension of the other much easier. The concept of doing less in order to achieve more is not new. Horsemen have known this for centuries. We have all seen or heard of John Lyons or Chris Cox riding bridless. I fully realize these are exceptional horseman whose training abilities surpass 99 % of even the most accomplished; however, applying this concept can be grasped by the most inexperienced rider. A good horseman doesn’t rely on mechanical devices or some fly by night gimmicks someone comes up with to accomplish his goals, he simply outthinks the animal. In doing this the horseman gains respect from the horse and only then is the horse trainable. There are two ingredients in respect: one is trust and the other is fear. Now I don’t know the correct ratio, but I do know it is not fifty fifty. There is considerably more trust needed than fear. Fear is not necessary to teach, most horses
are born with enough to last a lifetime. Trust, on the other hand must be earned and cannot be instilled by using force. We must follow the direction of Ray Hunt when he says “make the right thing easy and the wrong thing difficult.” When the horse respects his rider, he will respond to amazingly minimal cues. The horse will seem to read the riders mind. We must remember that clear concise communication between horse and rider is essential for a harmonious outcome. The way a horse responds to their rider is entirely the rider’s responsibility. The development of the riders abilities, demonstrated through their timing, feel, and balance will enhance the horses’ performance. Unfortunately there remain quite a few folks out there still relying on mechanical devices and force to gain the acceptable behavior they desire. However, an advanced horseman knows that it’s much easier to get peak performance from a horse through cooperation rather than with forceful manipulation. That is why I suggest to all of my students to use less. This makes them rely on their timing, feel, and balance to produce the desired effect. To watch an accomplished horseman reminds me of good dancers. You see a fluid motion without jerky cues; the movements are effortless for both parties. The term graceful comes to mine. A friend of mine at the barn I stable at has a gorgeous buckskin and white paint gelding
named Dusty. Now Dusty is fairly young, less than four, but has a great disposition. His owner, Deneen has almost single handily trained him, and has done a remarkable job. She and I were visiting one day about Dusty’s training and from her explanations I figured out she was using too much bit with too much pressure. I loaned Deneen my hackamore (not a mechanical hackamore, I don’t own a “bear trap”), and waited a few days for the report. She was ecstatic; Dusty had changed from a confused disobedient individual to one with total trust and respect for his rider. In fact a few weeks later Deneen came running up to me exclaiming “I rode him with just a neck rope, cantering and everything.” Needless to say that made me feel pretty good. I was able to help a person as well as a horse communicate with each other without either one getting fuzzed up. The best of all is that it made everyone involved happy and brought joy and peace in the process. It pains me to think that there are folks missing out on a peaceful relationship with their horse simply because they won’t slow down and use less. To ride a horse should be a pleasure, not a fight. A relaxing event for everyone involved. Humans can enhance the riding experience if we would learn not to rely on mechanics and gizmos that are supposed to “help” us. We all need to use the God given strength we have, which is to out think the horse and learn to communicate better with them. This will enable us to better utilize the animal for whatever task we chose i.e. work or play. This relationship makes both of our lives better, peaceful. Until next time be safe and God bless you all. ~Wes
NAIS - Con’t. from pg. 30 Japan. This would also be a large, expensive undertaking, and would miss all the cattle that are butchered in non-commercial settings. In the event of an outbreak of FMD (foot and mouth or hoof and mouth disease), movement of all livestock, including horses, will likely be halted. Why horses? They can mechanically transmit this most contagious of diseases, even though they themselves do not become infected. But, you say, my horses are not stabled anywhere near a cow! That won’t matter, because if you are cruising down the highway towing a trailer, how is the highway patrolman to determine where your horse came from? All livestock movement in the affected area will cease, even if they have to call out the National Guard. Law enforcement would then go door to door, if that’s what’s required, to locate all cattle, sheep, hogs and goats. They have the legal authority to do so, and to quarantine, and, if necessary, destroy, exposed cattle, sheep, hogs and goats. They have had this authority for a long, long time. In an extreme emergency, they would no doubt use it. Did you follow the course of the first FMD outbreak in England, or the second? The second one was controlled much more quickly than the first one, and was much less costly than the first one, because they were prepared the second time. This is partly because they now have in place a system for locating animals and tracking movement much more rapidly. The strongest argument for rapid control of a FMD outbreak is economic: we can’t afford a widespread FMD outbreak. By the way, during the first outbreak, the cost to the British horse industry of the FMD was estimated
NAIS - Con’t. on pg. 40 www.texashorsetalk.com
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
B USINESS B ITS A NEW Bridle for Unrivalled Comfort Designed from the inside out to fit the shape of the horse’s skull, Horseware’s Rambo® Micklem MultiBridle is the most comfortable, flexible and effective bridle to hit the market. The Horseware® Rambo® Micklem MultiBridle is the first bridle designed based upon the shape of the horses’ skull rather than the outside appearance of the head. Not only is the Micklem MultiBridle comfortable and humane but is designed for versatility. It is comprised of three main pieces of equipment in one... a bitted bridle with integral noseband, a lunge cavesson and a bitless bridle. The Micklem MultiBridle features the unique mouth protection system for the tongue and bars which has proven effective for many horses. The design of the common bridle has not been challenged in many years. William Micklem, an accomplished Irish horseman and the designer of the Horseware® Rambo® Micklem MultiBridle, has done just that. By extensively studying inherent problems caused by the existing shape and style of common bridles, Mr. Micklem has created a solution with the presentation of the Micklem MultiBridle. For example, damage and discomfort is frequently caused by pressure to the facial nerves, the projecting cheek bones and upper jaw molar teeth. Horseware’s Rambo® Micklem MultiBridle prevents any damage to the facial nerves or sensitive tissues lining the cheeks and inside the mouth by removing the need for tight fitting cavessons or flash nosebands. Not only does the Rambo® Micklem MultiBridle overcome main areas of discomfort for your horse but it replaces the need for lunging off of a bridle or traditional lunge cavesson over a bridle. There are additional benefits for horses who resist due to pain around the frequently damaged bars of the mouth or who fight contact with the bit due to too much pressure on the tongue. The special design of the Micklem Multipurpose Bridle with its wide and padded headpiece redistributes the weight from resting all on one narrow noseband strap allowing for excellent communication and control to occur. The advantages are numerous and your horses will notice the difference. Eco friendly tannery processes are an added bonus to this already excellent choice in bridlery.
Masterpieces Masterpieces, a unique western retail store west of Madisonville, Tx., held its grand opening the evening of February 22 with more than 250 people in attendance. Owned by Gala and Ronnie Nettles, the store has an unusual western flair, mixing western décor and western tack, sometimes even integrating the two together. The Nettles are deeply immersed in the equine industry. Gala has written articles, columns and books for the industry for 20 years while Ronnie, a Hall of Fame cutting horse trainer has trained horses and given cutting lessons for decades. Twenty-one years ago, he designed the Nettles laminated oak stirrup and that’s when Masterpieces was really born, although unnamed. Gala Nettles began manning a booth filled with the stirrups made on the Nettles Ranch and the books she had written, at major NCHA competitions. “As the years passed, I added a few gift items to the booth, things that I enjoyed,” explained Gala Nettles. “First, it was a few gift items, then the guys building our stirrups started building a few things such as stirrup clocks, shelves, etc.” The merchandise grew and before long, it seemed only natural to build a permanent store. Today, Masterpieces is not only home to Gala’s 15 books along with Nettles Stirrups and other high quality tack, it is also home to furniture accessories such as cowhide rugs, pewter, crystal and anything else Gala can find that is unique. The 2000 square foot store shares a building with the Nettles Stirrups Manufacturing Company and sits in front of the round pens where Ronnie Nettles daily trains cutting horses. The entire complex, known as Nettles Country and located three miles west of Madisonville is definitely a unique western experience.
The Rambo® Micklem MultiBridle was recently awarded the BETA 2008 Innovation Award. Its logical and effective design was recognized as a revolutionary step for the way in which we bridle our horses. The Micklem MultiBridle with all components is supplied as a set and is available in Pony, Cob and Horse sizes. For more information or to locate a dealer near you please visit www. horseware.com or call 800-887-6688.
34 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
Tomball Barn Dealer Wins “Dealer of the Year” Tri-County Barns Presented Award from Barnmaster, Inc. Tomball, Texas – When horse and animal enthusiasts are looking to build or update their barns in the state of Texas, a little asking around will eventually lead them to TriCounty Barns. Known for its high level of personalized service, as well as quality modular barns, the company has been a leader in the industry since the early 1990s. Joey Robbins, president of Tri-County Barns, headquartered in Tomball, Texas, was recently recognized for outstanding salesmanship and customer service. Robbins was presented the Dealer of the Year award from Barnmaster, Inc. by the company’s president, Jeff Nowell, on March 8, 2008, at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo. “Tri-County Barns is known for having a great reputation for taking care of its customers,” says Nowell. “Not only do they have a winning sales team, but they know the Barnmaster product inside and out.” As the dealership presenting the highest level of sales for Barnmaster, Robbins says his success stems from “tons of leads from friends or existing customers.” Barnmaster has 17 dealers with coverage in all 50 states. Robbins says there are several reasons his customers have a comfort level when dealing with Tri-County Barns: • For a high level of quality, Tri-County Barns offers a fair price over its competitors • Barnmaster Barns are easy to maintain, durable and it’s guaranteed that your horses won’t chew or kick down the walls • Tri-County Barns has a full-time crew available for questions or concerns What is the process in purchasing a Barnmaster modular barn? “From the point that a customer decides they want to purchase a barn, it takes approximately three months,” explains Robbins. He says that most people have a general idea of the size and features they’d like. There are a variety of customizable options, including number of stalls, tack room, feed room and wash area. “It’s up to us to design it for them, which we can do in about 30 minutes in the showroom,” he adds. In fact, the barns are so customizable that while 90 percent are made for horses, Robbins has also come across his share of interesting projects. TriCounty Barns has created structures for miniature horses, donkeys, cattle, homing pigeons, boats, warehouses and shops. “We are able to meet eccentric needs,” he says. “We believe in giving people what they want and making them happy.” The company even developed some projects for the Houston Zoo, creating homes for the Bongos and Okapis. “It’s neat to go to the zoo with my daughter and she gets to see a barn that we built,” Robbins says. Tri-County Barns’ main office is in Tomball, Texas and showrooms also are located in Austin and McAllen, Texas. For additional information, please call 800-429-8239 or visit Tri-County Barns on the Web at www.txbarns. com. Barnmaster, Inc.: Designed for Horsemen by Horsemen
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
www.tdhma.org or contact Rodney Read at 979-249-5795
Competitive Trail Challenge Schedule of Events 6-10 Miles of trail with challenging obstacles $500 Cash Awards, Great Prizes 1-6th Place Open, Pleasure, Junior Div. Facilities for Overnight stay. Clinics available April 19 - Franklin Family Ranch, Blanco, TX May 17 – ** C Bar Ranch, Valley Mills, TX, www.CompetitiveTrailChallenge.com, or call Patty 325-388-0426, or Karen 512-554-8683
Half Pint Rodeo in Burton will have a youth rodeo on April 12, and May 31
EVENTS Texas Draft Horse and Mule Association
Mark your Calendars for our 2008 events May 3 – Trail Ride at Lake Whitney (Dick Curtis) May 17 – Harvest Day in Ledbetter (Rodney Read) Oct 25 – TDHMA Show in Brenham (Danielle Wisknewski) Nov 8 – Annual Meeting Temple (Rodney Read) Check for additional events and changes on
Sign up at 1 events start at 2, Admission is free age groups are 3 & Under/ 4-6 / 7-13 / 14-18 Events- Barrels, poles, stick horse events, mutton bustin, calf riding, goat ribbon pulling, steer riding and more call Angela at 979-255-4870 for more info.
2008 Gulf Coast Horse Horse Show Association Show Schedule 2008
May 18 – Southern Breeze Equestrian Center, (Rain Date, May 25) June 1 – Rolltop Meadows Farm, (Rain Date, June 8) June 29 – Whipple Tree Farm, (Rain Date, July 7)
July 13 – Sam Houston Equestrian Center, (Rain Date, July 20) September 7 – TBA, (Rain Date, Sept. 14) October 5 – Southern Breeze Equestrian Center, (Rain Date, October 12) October 26 – Rolltop Meadows Farm, (Rain Date, Nov. 2) TBA – Awards Banquet *Horse show prize lists will be mailed to members about three weeks before each competition. Some show dates may change during the year. Please check dates in prize lists when you receive them. Go to the forms page for current show bill and entry forms.
Horses Rock 4-H, Travis County Open Playday and Tack Swap Saturday, April 12 at Signal Hill Ranch Arena, 11000 Burnt Oak Drive (Southeast corner of the intersection of Burnt Oak Drive and Nutty Brown Rd) 1½ miles south of HWY 290 on Nutty Brown Road, Austin, Texas. Featuring English and Western events. $7 per class or all day registration $60. Registration forms at horsesrock.org or call Holly at 512-923-2567 to request more information. Bring excess tack to sell with 20% of sale proceeds going to Horses Rock as a fundraiser.
Bellville Heritage Gathering Trail ride May 2-4, 2008 (This year’s trail ride will begin and end at 7IL with the Longhorns in front)
LONGHORN FEED & SEED BIG V
WE’RE MORE THAN JUST A FEED STORE!
SADDLES New & Used
HEALTH PRODUCTS Equine & Canine
WATKINS PRODUCTS -Since 1868-
JOHN DEERE Gadgets & Gifts
Open Sunday 10am - 2pm
281-820-3333 11718 N. Houston Rosslyn Houston, Texas 77086
36 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
• $60.00 per person for the entire weekend (Friday 1pm-Sunday 4pm) • $25.00 per kid riders (12 & under) • $15.00 per RV hookup (per 24 hours) Call to reserve RV electric w/water • Extra Meals for Friday Night-$10.00 • Johnny Lee tickets - $15.00 advanced or $20.00 at the door www.7iltrails.com, 979-865-0011, 979-236-5552, www. BellvilleHeritageGathering.com, 1-800-877-55Trail.
Benefit outing set for May 3 in Benbrook, Texas: Ride for a cause with APHA’s St. Jude trail ride FORT WORTH, TEXAS – The American Paint Horse Association (APHA) and Benbrook Stables invite equine enthusiasts to help find a cure for childhood cancer by participating in their annual “Saddle Up! For St. Jude” benefit trail ride on Saturday, May 3, in Benbrook, Texas. Last year, the inaugural event drew 98 riders and raised more than $12,000 for the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The 10-mile adventure, which begins at Benbrook Stables, will take riders along the trails surrounding beautiful Lake Benbrook. It will be a great way to enjoy the day with fellow
horse enthusiasts while supporting an outstanding cause. Upon returning to the stables, APHA will host a chuck wagon cookout, the local Cowtown Opry musical group will entertain and a special benefit auction will be held. Minimum donation requested for the ride, lunch and entertainment is $35, and all proceeds benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. All breeds of horses are welcome. Further details, including a map, sign-up forms, a list of auction items, rain date information, a list of special donors and the names of ride participants can be found by visiting apha.com/stjude. For more information, contact: Brenda Jewell, Ride Coordinator (817) 222-643 Email: email@example.com If you can’t join the ride, please consider a donation, and we will send you a St. Jude lapel pin. Make your check out to “St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital” and send to: Brenda Jewell, St. Jude Ride Coordinator American Paint Horse Association P.O. Box 961023 Fort Worth, Texas 76161-0023
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
Happy Trails Destinations of Choice Mineral Wells State Park and Trailway
by Christina Childs
Photos Courtesy of Christina Childs More than 100 years ago, a railroad giant and a pair of legendary cattle barons laid a lasting foundation, a foundation that has given rise to one of North Texas’ best kept secrets, The Lake Mineral Wells State Park and Trailway. The state park, which covers more than 3,000 acres, has become a haven to horse enthusiasts from across the state due to its diverse trail riding experiences. Visitors to the densely wooded nature preserve can take their choice between a relaxing ride down the famed Lake Mineral Wells State Trailway, or they can head out across some of the area’s most picturesque prairie on the Cross Timbers Back Country Trail. The Lake Mineral Wells State Trailway, affectionately called “Rails to Trails,” was once
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the home of the Weatherford, Mineral Wells and Northwestern Railroad. After changing hands many times, the railway eventually shut down in 1992, due to lack of traffic. Today, the old rail bed has been converted into a 20-mile hiking and equestrian trial with entry points in Mineral Wells, Weatherford and Garner, Texas. The trail itself is smooth sailing, maintained to near perfection by park staff. The trailway is clearly defined by rustic rail ties and features gradual slopes and a crushed limestone floor. The leisurely ride is perfect for beginning riders, young horses or experienced horsemen looking to simply saddle up, sit back, ride and relax. The Cross Timbers Back Country Trail offers a more rustic appeal. Its history lies in the bootladen imprints of famed cattlemen like Oliver
Loving and Charles Goodnight, who crossed the same dusty plains long ago. The Cross Timbers trail is a slightly rugged terrain that seldom sees a road grader, and is a big draw for more adventurous equestrians. The 11-mile trek boasts natural beauty, and showcases the breathtaking views of the Western Cross Timbers, a wooded ribbon of land running from Oklahoma through North Texas, that is characterized by deep ravines, open meadows and sandstone formations. The Mineral Wells State Park and Trailway is the only state facility in Texas currently preserving the Western Cross Timbers. The trail itself runs in a pattern of interlocking loops that shuffle the rider from one majestic view to the next. Those looking to hop on the Cross Timbers trail should be advised that horses should be shod due the difficulty of the natural terrain. To accommodate an ever growing surge in equestrian activity the staff at the state park works to ensure the basic needs of visitors are met. Each trailway entrance offers an abundance of truck and trailer parking. Water hook ups, and large water basins are also made available at each trail head. Campsites are available as well, and come complete with hitching posts and water stations. The park operates year-round from sunrise to sunset, entry rates vary, depending on the season. A current Coggins test is required for all trails, and the park asks, due to the number of entry points, that riders on the Mineral Wells State Trialway carry their paperwork with them. For more information on the Mineral Wells State Park and Trailway, visit www. tpwd.state.tx.us.
Happy Trails Destinations and Vacations Dos Brisas Ranch
Hill Country State Natural Area Bandera, Texas
• • • • • •
Equestrian Camping Horseback Riding Primitive Camping Backpacking Hiking Mountain Biking
by Diane Holt Come ride on 600+ acres that backs up to the National Forest. Group trail rides once or twice per month Steak dinner cooked on an open fire in dutch ovens.
Nestled behind locked gates and hidden just behind a rise in verdant Washington County lies the exquisite luxury destination, Dos Brisas, a 313 acre ranch with the upper two percent in mind. The facility just outside Chappell Hill features well ridden horses groomed daily to perfection.
Bring your own horse or rent one of ours Private rides for families, birthday parties, reunions, or even Cowboy Weddings Camp sites available now Safe Family Get-A-Way! 3281 Dabney Bottom Rd. • Cleveland TX. 77327 (936) 767-8111 • www.tcranch.net
Next to the Alamo and RiverCenter Mall, gateway to The River Walk (800) 345-9285 • historicmenger.com At 204 Alamo Plaza Since 1859 San Antonio, TX 78205
DOS BRISAS RANCH Dos Brisas boasts riding trails, an 80,000 square foot enclosed arena, a 150 foot outside arena and an air conditioned tack and feed room. After a leisurely ride, or a vigorous workout,guests can enjoy the Rider’s Lounge in the Show Barn with a soft drink, or adult beverage from the bar. And if you just have to stay in touch with the outside world, Dos Brisas offers a T-1 wireless Internet connection, and big city television. If a guest boards a horse, a web cam is available in the stall as an added security touch. Dos Brisas intermittently hosts events. Just check www.dosbrisas.com frequently to see what’s going at this small gem in the Brazos Valley. Dos Brisas was built as a getaway for busy executives, and if you fit the description, you will love the facility’s four casitas which rent for $575 per day, breakfast and lunch included. The elegant Dos Brisas restaurant is open for dinner Thursday through Saturday evenings and again for Sunday brunch. If your stay includes the Sunday through Wednesday time period, you hosts will provide a complimentary dinner basket in the casita.
Best “Jekyll Island, GA” Beach Location
• Golf & Romance Packages Available • “Free” Deluxe Continental Breakfast Bar Included • FREE HIGH SPEED WIRELESS INTERNET ACCESS • Two Pools, bike rentals, all rooms offer microfridges & coffee makers
60 S. Beachview Drive • 888-635-3003 / 912-635-9800 • www.daysinnjekyll.com www.texashorsetalk.com
DOS BRISAS PASTURE Dos Brisas is a truly upscale equine destination dedicated to serving the demanding horseman’s needs. Equine Manager Lesia Washmon has shown in Quarter Horse competitions, ridden in competitive trail rides, has trained and started colts, and now is there to serve even her most discriminating guests. To make reservations for dinner, or overnight stay, contact us at 979.277.7750 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org • www.dosbrisas.com
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
NAIS - Con’t. from pg. 33 to be $27 million per week (source: www.chronofhorse. com). This was due to cancellation of events, interrupted commerce, etc. How many of you are familiar with the history of fever tick eradication? At the beginning of the 20th century, bovine piroplasmosis, or Texas fever was a serious problem for cattle producers. Cattle all across the southern United States were infected. In the south, the cattle mostly were just carriers of the disease because if cattle are infected as calves, they tend to have a mild disease and later in life show no symptoms. But if cattle are exposed as adults, they develop a severe disease, and often die. According to the 1955 edition of the Merck Veterinary Manual, mortality could reach 90% in hot weather. Now, do you suppose that Texas cattle were welcome in northern feedlots? Or anywhere else outside of the area where the disease was endemic? Obviously, the market for southern cattle was seriously limited. Texas fever put a big damper on the rural economy of involved states. Thankfully, the disease has been eliminated from the United States. In 1911, dipping of cattle to eliminate the ticks that spread the disease began. There were almost 14 million cattle that needed to be dipped, so it was a big project. Surely everyone was happy to learn that there was a way to eliminate Texas fever. Well, no—not everyone was happy. Veterinary Medicine and Human Health, by Calvin W. Schwabe, has this very interesting paragraph: “Although dipping vats were dynamited and four control officials were killed by farmers opposed to the program, the effort persisted and the enzootic area of infection was gradually pushed back. By 1934, the disease had been eradicated from 88 per cent of the area it had held in 1906. The total cost of the effort to 1934 was about 41.6 million dollars, while annual losses from the disease prior to 1906 were estimated at 73 million dollars.” Please read that paragraph again and think about it. There were farmers willing to murder people rather than cooperate with a program that ultimately saved them money. In Iowa in 1932 farmers rose up in rebellion against the mandatory testing of dairy cattle for tuberculosis. The governor had to call out the National Guard to protect veterinarians and permit them to continue with the testing. And this clearly was a beneficial program. Anything that reduced human exposure to tuberculosis was a good thing, because in those days there was no effective way to treat it. Today, The Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance doesn’t like the idea of a national, compulsory testing of horses for EIA (equine infectious anemia, or swamp fever). Frankly, I like that idea. Why should a fraction of horse owners (the responsible fraction) bear the burden of controlling EIA alone? We will be Coggins testing our horses forever if we don’t make a
40 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
move at some point to eradicate the disease. Just as cattle producers (except for those who live along the Rio Grande) no longer have to dip their cattle for fever ticks, or test their cattle again and again for brucelosis, I can foresee that horse owners could some day be relieved of the burden of EIA testing, if we move forward and test all horses. The government pretty much knows where to find you and me already - and our horses too. I’m not sure how much difference NAIS would make. We track every car that is manufactured in the U. S., don’t we? And cars can’t spread infectious disease. Of course, it does cost money to register all these cars. Several years ago, in a Greater Houston Horse Council newsletter, I advised people that the USDA was starting to make plans along these lines. Public comment was being taken, and I advised of that. The Equine Working Group was formed, and if I’m not mistaken, I even listed the members and anyone who wanted to contact them and express his or her views certainly could. How many did? And now we’re getting excited? There are no clear-cut, black or white answers. Depending on which scenario plays out, NAIS could be a good thing or a bad thing. If we never have a serious disease outbreak like the British did a few years ago, NAIS will probably be viewed forevermore as a hugely expensive program without sufficient benefit. If we do someday have such an outbreak, or if a significant increase in BSE cases is ever seen, we’ll be sorry if we haven’t instituted such a plan. I don’t have a crystal ball. Wish I did. I’m afraid I still have more questions than answers. This has never been the simple issue that some would have you believe. *ProMED-mail is a program of the International Society for Infectious Disease. It is an Internet-based reporting system dedicated to rapid global dissemination of information on outbreaks of infectious disease. It is accessible at http:// www.promedmail.org. Pauline Singleton is a pharmacist and horsewoman with a long association with livestock and producers of livestock. She is also a past president of the Greater Houston Horse Council.
TO ADVERTISE CALL 281-447-0772 email@example.com
It is that time of the year again spring is here and The Kentucky Derby is just around the corner. Texas should have a say in the Derby outcome this year. One of the leading contenders is Pyro, trained by Texan Steve Asmussen. Some scribes are now saying Pyro is the horse to beat after his impressive win down in New Orleans for the Louisiana Derby. War Pass had been the number one horse for a while but he still has not run as much distance as Pyro and did not look so good in his last race. So Texans, lets get out there and cheer Pyro and Asmussen to the winners circle for this yearâ€™s Run for the Roses. Checking in at the Texas ovals, Sam Houston Race Park is getting ready for their annual Connally Breeders Cup Turf Festival on April 5. Current meet leaders are John Locke on top of the trainers
Remboldt - Conâ€™t. on pg. 48
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Goosey Moose Wins Springs Stakes
Photo Courtesy Sam Houston Race Park
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
EDGARS ROUND PENS $1395.00
Edgars Original: • Panels are 6’ high by 12’ long • All Round Stock • Horizontally 8 Bars • Vertically 5 Bars • Schedule 40 Steel Pipe • All 90o Corners • 110 lbs - Each Panel
Round pens consist of 15 Panels and a separate 6’ bow gate, 60’ across and 6’ high.
Style #1: Add treated lumber on bottom of each panel.
Style #2: Add no-step horse wire on top, and treated lumber on bottom of each panel.
Style #3: Add treated plywood on top, and treated lumber on bottom of each panel. See website for photos and more info
www.roundpens.com 1-800-837-9069 Code 00
John Lyons Round Pens 60’ - $2495.00
Will deliver 7 days a week at $1 per mile 1 way. Over 300 miles call for pricing. Delivery includes setup.
Horse Bites - Con’t. from pg. 11 white checkered silks leading the pack with the historic Twin Spires of Churchill Downs in the background. Neiman’s signature adorns the neck band of the bottle in Secretariat’s signature blue color, and an attached tag bears information about the product and the artist. Neiman’s Secretariat 35th Anniversary prints will be available beginning April 1 while supplies last at Cobalt Artworks in Louisville and online at www.cobaltartworks.com and www.secretariat.com. The prints range from $40 for an Official Edition poster to $250 for a Commemorative Foil-Stamped Edition triple-signed by Neiman, Secretariat’s owner Penny Chenery and jockey Ron Turcotte. A percentage of the proceeds from the art sales will be donated to The Secretariat Foundation. The mission of The Secretariat Foundation is to assist and support various charities and causes within the thoroughbred racing community. Best known for his brilliantly colored, energetic images of sporting events and leisure activities, LeRoy Neiman is one of the few contemporary artists whose name has become a household word. Neiman’s artwork is exhibited at numerous galleries and museums around the world. As an official artist at such diverse events as the 2008 Ryder Cup, 2010 World Equestrian Games, Kentucky Derby, and was the official artist at five Olympiads, Neiman has been televised on location with his sketchbook in hand, producing split second records of what he is witnessing.
for Paints and Appaloosas. Got Country Grip easily won his 16th straight race and remained undefeated in his career. The 5-year-old is now tied with Thoroughbred greats Citation, Cigar, Mister Frisky and Hallowed Dreams for most consecutive wins by any racing breed in North America. Should Got Country Grip win his next race, he would stand alone with 17, owning the record outright. His next race is expected to be the $25,000 Mr. Lewie Memorial Handicap at Remington Park on Saturday, April 19. Another stakes event his connections are pointing to is the $25,000 National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum Stakes on May 24, also at Remington Park. Owned by Jimmy Maddux of Weatherford, Texas and trained by Brandon Parum of Jones, Okla., Got Country Grip easily defeated a field of six rivals despite a slight bobble upon leaving the starting gate in the 350-yard event. Ridden as he has been in all of his races by Oklahoma City jockey G.R. Carter, Got Country Grip was well within himself through most of the race but did make it a little interesting in the opening strides with a slight bobble. When he came out of the gate and stumbled, you have to ride through it and try to get him on his feet and keep the forward momentum going, Carter said. That is what he is good at, having forward momentum down the racetrack. He is a phenomenal animal. You can look at him with his demeanor and the way he carried himself. He has it and he knows it too. Parum noted the less than perfect start was something that Got Country Grip is able to overcome due to his tremendous talent and ability. He tried to leave there really hard tonight and the ground kind of left underneath him, Parum said. G.R. kept his head picked up and he went right on. It wasn’t terrible but it was enough to get a lot of horses beat. He stumbled and still overcame it. Got Country Grip hit the finish three-quarters of a length better than Bust N Moves with Boy of Summer another neck behind in third. The time for the race over the fast track was :17.701. “That was a good field of horses, some of the best Paints and Apps around,” Parum said. “I look for him to run a better next race.” An Oklahoma-bred gelding by Country Quick Dash from the Super de Kas mare Got a Grip, Got Country Grip earned $10,078 for his 16th win in as many attempts. His career earnings now stand at $257,578. Trainer: Brandon Parum Jockey: G.R. Carter Owner: Jimmy Maddux Photo Credit: Dustin Orona Photography
HHHHH GOT COUNTRY GRIP WINS 16TH STRAIGHT RACE TO TIE NORTH AMERICAN RECORD AT REMINGTON PARK OKLAHOMA CITY – Super Paint-horse Got Country Grip returned to the track for his first 2008 race on Thursday, March 27, at Remington Park and equaled a North American record for consecutive wins in the process. He achieved the mark in a $16,840 allowance event
44 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
Hillary Dobbs - Con’t. from pg. 25 CS: Now is riding something you’ve always wanted to do, or is it something your parents thought would be a good idea for you? HD: No, it’s something that I’ve always wanted to do. I was four years old, when a family friend gave us a pony for us to start taking lessons on. Its something that I fell in love with immediately. It progressed more and more. My parents both have backgrounds with horses. My dad used to ride western, my mom rode English, but at a more recreational level. When I started taking lessons, there was never any intention of me competing at a national or even an international level. It’s something that I got more and more competitive… enthusiastic wouldn’t even be a good word. It was such a passion of mine. I started making steps to go to the next level, starting with Missy during my freshman year. It was something that progressed as I went. I was never pushed into it; I never even had to be encouraged. It’s become almost addicting. I don’t know what I would do without horses in my life. CS: I think most horse people can understand that. Do your parents ever go riding with you? Do you ever do it just for fun? HD: No, it’s been a while since they’ve had the time to ride again. I keep trying to get my mom to sit on one of the horses. They’re so busy and my mom, before I could drive, was busy enough driving me to all the competitions and taking care of me that we never really had time to do it as a family. But, it is still a family activity going to the horse shows. My mom hasn’t missed a competition and my dad flies down to Florida every weekend after work to watch me compete. And my brothers and their wives come down and watch. It’s turned into a really fun family experience. CS: So you must go back and forth each week between Harvard and the show circuit? HD: Yeah, the winter classic this year is 12 weeks and I have ten weekends of back and forth under my belt. Yeah, I go to class Monday thru Wednesday and I fly down Wednesday night to compete Thursday thru Sunday and I fly back Sunday night after the grand prix. CS: So are you exhausted at this point? HD: I’m exhausted! It’s mid-term season. But I mean, you have to love it as much as I do to be able to go back and forth and not get burnt out. CS: Now how many people does it take to get all of your horses going for all week long? HD: Oh, it’s such a huge team effort. They’ve been great with me, understanding my schedule, the circumstances that I am under, going back and forth to Harvard, very understanding. I couldn’t do it without that whole team. . CS: What are you studying at Harvard? HD: Government. CS: What do you plan to do when you graduate? HD: You know, it’s too early for me to tell, I’ve just picked a major. A career is kind of far off. As far as the horses go and my involvement with, that I plan on taking a year or so off after school and seeing where riding takes me. I can’t think or even imagine quitting riding and at
46 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
the same time, as I get older I’ll have to start thinking about careers and graduate schools, so a career is kind of far down the line. CS: Is there any hope at all that you’d be picked for the Olympics in Hong Kong? HD: No, we opted not to do the trial this year, in order to compete for the Nation’s Cup two weekends ago. You can’t do the same horse in both. It something that, it’s so early in my grand prix career, and I have been very lucky to have some wins that we have to really remind ourselves that I’ve only been doing it a year and so have my horses CS: Have you ever had a fall that made you frightened? HD: No, I’ve been very lucky, knock on wood, to not have any injuries. I had a fall about two weeks ago and I actually have tendonitis from it. But, you have to come back in the next round or the next class and remind yourself that it’s a different circumstance and freak things happen. You have to move on from each fall. It’s great that I’m also not naturally a nervous competitor. I’m calm and I try to stay focused. I really believe that the way you think about things and where you’re head is, is a huge part of it. CS: Have you ever given thought to how you
are perceived among the young children and the people who are up and coming in this sport as far as being a role model? Do you ever think about that? HD: Yeah, it’s a funny dynamic. It’s nice with the younger girls at the barn, they look up to me. I think about that all the time. Not just the way I ride but how I conduct myself because I was that little girl that was looking up to the older riders not that long ago. I was talking about it the other day, I remember, even before teens, at twelve, thirteen, looking up to Georgina Bloomberg and Sarah Williams and those riders and emulating them CS: It’s not an easy sport is it? HD: No, it’s really not. And I am in no way a finished product. I have a lot of learning to do. It’s a humbling sport. I won two grand prix in a row down here and the one right after that is the one where I fell off at the last jump in the jump-off. You can go from winning a class the week before, the same class, and then falling off in the next one. It is humbling in that way.
good round, and then Beezie Madden or Peter Wylde or McClain Ward, they show you how to do it better. CS: Yeah, every class is a fresh slate. Do you feel that having a strong background in equitation is valuable when it comes to riding jumpers? HD: I feel that having a strong background in the equitation has been crucial for my jumper riding: for me, the equitation was never about winning medal finals-- it was never in the cards for me. However, the equitation ring was where I learned to ride precise courses and refine my riding. The equitation courses and exercises in the show ring and in lessons gave me fundamentals that are invaluable when the jumps get big and the courses more challenging. Things I worked on at 3’6” in the equitation are still things I work on today for the grand prix ring. That’s what the equitation was for me: a place to learn fundamentals and good riding-- it was not the ultimate goal (to win a finals), but rather a stepping stone to learn how to ride well at the next levels.
CS: That’s what keeps it interesting, isn’t it? HD: Oh, of course. It’s also humbling when you’re competing against the top riders down here and you go in and you think you had a
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April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
Remboldt - Conâ€™t. from pg. 42
Horse Laughs Financial Statement April is here and that means it is time to review 2007 and develop our financial statements. This does not have to be the dreaded process we all attempt to put off until the last moment every year. I am going to give you some tips on how to simplify the process of taking an accounting of, and categorizing, your assets. Start by cleaning out your tack room. You might be surprised to find you actually own four or five sets of clippers, all in working condition after you knock off the two years of clipper oil matted with horse hair. Put all of these clippers together in a box to misplace later. Then pull out all of your saddle pads and blankets, even the one setting on top of your saddle to keep the dust off. I always feel better when I cover my saddle with a pad, even though I am well aware that barn dust can penetrate any surface and it is possible I am only attempting to hide my already dirty saddle from peering eyes. If applicable, put the saddle pads in either the Western pile or the English pile, as these are entirely different categories. Gather up all of your brushes, unfortunately this is probably the most time consuming job that shows the least amount of return. Make sure you include that $26.00 brush left on the ground that you were just using to scrub the water trough. Now for your bits. First, find a large box for them and place it in a low traffic area, since once you have found all your bits and put them in this box, it will probably be too heavy to move. Remember that you must include all bits in this inventory, even ones that have found a new use, such as the one now dispensing toilet paper. When attempting to remember the cost in order to calculate depreciation on these bits, remember that the higher the number of testimonials on the miracles seen following the use of said bit is generally in direct proportion to the high number on the price of said bit.
48 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
Saddle wealth can be the source of great pride or occasionally, if our saddle wealth becomes too great, it can be the cause of great embarrassment. I remember a simpler time when all horses wore our one good saddle. An extra pad might be employed for a narrow horse, but for the most part, it seemed to work out pretty well. But today there are so many ways a saddle does not fit a horse, we are led to believe we need a different saddle for each horse and maybe two saddles for each horse, one for when they have a little winter fat on them and one for when they are in shape. This has caused great angst for some folks since they search and search for that just right fit. So are you ready to tackle that pile of lonely saddles perched precariously in the corner of your tack room? Do not forget those saddles you own that are now lent out to folks with the hope they will want to add them to their collection. When attempting to determine the correct rate of depreciation for your saddles, remember this easy formula. A saddleâ€™s value is directly determined by the number of times you have left said saddle prematurely. If all of your saddles seem to have the same high rate of depreciation, it might be time for you to consider a four wheeler. Now, go to your horse trailer and repeat.
with 44 wins, and Steve Asmussen in second with 41 victories. Jockey Jorge Guzman leads with 60 trips to the winners circle, and Paul Nolan is running a close second with 54 photos crossing the finish line. A familiar name to SHRP race goers won the $50,000 Spring Stakes on March 22. Goosey Moose, a Texas-bred son of the late Shaquin, won the 7 furlong race. He was bred by the late Wilton Scott and is now owned by Israel Flores. Danny Pish trains and Quincy Hamilton rode for the win. Up north Lone Star Park gets underway with live Thoroughbred racing starting on April 10. The feature race opening day will be the $50,000 Premiere Stakes going one-mile for Texas-bred 3-year-olds and up. The meet will go until July 27. Down in San Antonio Retama Park runs the Quarter horses beginning on April 25 with 21 nights of fast racing for the fans. The next couple of months are going to be filled with a racing fans dream, new meets starting all over the state and the Kentucky Derby with a Texas connection. Lets hope a Texan wins. See you in the paddock.
The Growing Voice of the Horse Community Next Meeting Monday April 21, 8:00 PM Visitors Always Welcome *Dinner available from 6:30 PM The Carriage House Cafe 7955 Fallbrook, Houston TX 832-607-8264 www.GHHC.com
by Elizabeth Kopplow www.texashorsetalk.com
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April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
TACK RACK Howdy, welcome to Cowboy Corner. After a week on the trail ride and three weeks of the biggest and best rodeo in the world, I always head back to the ranch with a cowboy tale or two. Last year at this time I wrote about a friend that had his thumb jerked off while unloading horses before the rodeo even started. Danged if the same thing didn’t happen again this year to another friend. Some way, somehow, he got his little finger caught in a jerk knot, horse pulled back, and
50 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008
“Chalupe”, lost two thirds of his little finger. Again, folks, please be careful. These boys I have talked about losing fingers are “hands”, not some tourist that just got here on a load of watermelons. So take it slow, and easy, be careful, and pay attention. Thank you Lord for watching over me, I came away with only a minor rope burn on my left hand. Prior to the trail ride I was up close to Brenham and saw some saddle racks in the parking lot of South Texas Tack. The display had several different models but my interest was a four saddle rack, stacked one over the other, on wheels. Saddle storage at a rodeo is a problem because of horizontal space limitations, however, vertical space is ample, so stacking is preferred. Took the appropriate dimensions of this portable saddle rack and sure enough when I got to the rodeo found a space just right. The rack is just over 6 feet tall with a base 26” wide and 36” long. Wheels are on the 3 feet long ends making the unit easy to move even loaded. The four saddle racks are about 16” wide and 24” long. The top saddle rack might be a little high for a short person, but perfect for me and my long saddle stirrups. Only need three racks at the rodeo so the rack nearest the ground
held the pads and blankets. Bridles and halter/lead ropes go on the saddle horns. It’s a great storage unit for tight spaces. At the ranch I use stackable storage racks for saddles, but the units are not portable. The wheeled unit will really come in handy when we are going to be gone a couple of days with four horses and the cattle trailer. The saddle rack can easily be carried in the truck or cattle trailer and at night put in the trailer to store our saddles. In good weather, you may leave the rack outside and cover with a tarp to keep dew off the saddles. The wheeled four saddle rack sure fits our need for storage which is portable, strong and affordable. Stationary units are also available and great for tack room use. Remember, be careful out there. Happy trails!
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April 2008 - TEXAS HORSE TALK
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52 TEXAS HORSE TALK - April 2008