Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Horses and Whores

So, I may get yelled at for this post, but I could care less. It's 103 degrees in SEATTLE, It has never been this hot we have broken several records today with the heat and I am CRANKY LOL. So moving on... To me, personally, I take riding very seriously, I am a pretty well known trainer in the area and I bust my back to get to get there and keep it that way. So when I see stupid people come into the horse world and try to use their lame ass celeb status, it irritated the crap out of me. Case and point. Katie Price.

She's a former topless model and I'm OK with that, she's a newbie in Dressage and riding in general and I'm OK with that, but now she has come out with her own equestrian clothing for both horse and rider and I want to slap her in the mouth for it. It's TRASH! It does not represent the class and etiquette that makes horses, especially DRESSAGE, what it should be. PLUS in the horse world, Katy is a big, fat NOBODY!!! She has done NOTHING great or even remotely impressive. In this video of her riding, it is sub par and it is what I would expect a beginner rider to look like. Her legs aren't stable, nor is her hands and arms.

The poor pony in the picture also looks as though it wants to kill itself. Just look at it's eyes! This whole thing is just useless garbage that needs to be burned. If I buy something name brand it will have the name Pessoa, George Morris, Clinton Anderson, or John Lyons attached to it. Not some stupid Porno celeb that has done NOTHING for the horse community except make it look skanky and cheap! So here's a thought Katie, good for you for getting into horse's, but how about we concentrate on learning how to ride BETTER and get off the stupid clothing line that is as useless and pathetic as if it were done by Pam Anderson herself.

It's such trash that I would like to scream at her at the top of my lungs. And in fact, it seems I'm not the only one... Look her up on google "Katy Price Horse." People in the horse world are not thrilled and rightly so. If this is the new wave of horse riders and clothing and tack, then I'm out of here, I'm getting into showing bunnies!!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I'd Die Without You....

So, I went on a trail ride with one of the gals from the barn the other day and we were discussing our horses and how I told her that Raven is my Horse Soulmate, He is my life and everything to me. He's crazy and fun and loyal and every time I ride or work him I get a big grin on my face. I can't help it he makes me laugh... We read each other and know what the other is thinking or about to do. I can not work him for a week or two and then jump on him and go. And it's not because he is a solid, bombproof horse, my god he's an Arab Sporthorse, it's just because we know each other, I trust my life with him and I know he feels the same.

So the gal I went with told me the same thing, that her horse was her Soulmate. She wasn't looking to buy a horse when she found him and neither was I when i found Raven, but when you feel that connection its like you know in an instant that you can't live with out them... She'd gone through a few horses before she found him and they clicked instantly.

People told me that Raven would kill me, that he acted stud-like (He's a Gelding), that "OMG HE'S AN ARAB!!!!!!!!!!" Never mattered to me, I knew from the moment I laid EYES on that horse that he and I would be together forever.... This is a pic of me and my guy...

What horse is or was your soulmate? What would you look for if you trying to find the ONE????

Monday, July 27, 2009


It has been hot hot hot here in Seattle! I almost think I've been magically transported to Arizona it's so dang hot. Never the less the training must go on. Although when it gets this roasty toasty I am forced into doing one of two things. First I can ride at night, I'm a huge nightowl so o big for me, or I can train on the trail. OOOOOH just as fun! So what can you do on a trail as far as training goes???

Well, I do a lot of leg work on the trails, side passing around solid obstacles that my knee could potentially crack into if not done properly. Hill work, desensitizing, work in water and streams. Stepping over logs. Working on all three gaits PROPERLY even though there is a lack of arena walls. Ahhhh it's a nice thing!! It breaks the monotony of the arena and gets us out in the wide open. It's great for the horses as well, it gives them something else to concentrate on and see new things. So What do you like to do on the trails???

Oh and here is something I just thought was funny, from AHAHAHA It's so cute!!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Rock My World!!

Oh man AWESOME DAY!!! So I had an Appt with the animal communicator today and it went sooooo well! She hit all the horses spot on!! So here is what they had to say. KEEP in mind she had NO WAY of knowing anything about my horses as I've never spoken with her.

Jag~ Wants to show and be center of attention, calls me his Mom. Sometimes feels misunderstood. Is very teenager like, but SUPER SMART! He knows he's strong and loves running around the arena. He wants to jump. He said one of my saddle pads is too itchy for him and he likes my lighter English saddle.

Raven~ Knows we are soul mates, knows he's my number 1, hates the fly mask and chiropractor. He talked of a scar he has on his leg. He loves where he is now. He likes having the show saddle on. He loves his alfalfa and cookies. Raven has always done this one weird thing. He grabs the back of my coat or hoodie and holds it in his mouth, he doesn't like letting go either, he just sits there with my coat in his mouth not moving. So I did ask her what that meant to him and she it meant I was his!! Awwwwww I LOVE my Raven!!

Sole'~ Thinks she is a princess and wants to show in very pretty tack. She spoke of a scratch she had on her neck that I was putting cream on. She is a total lovebug. She loves when we work with the radio on. She loves her Berry Goods!

Louie~ Wants to feel more special. He will bulk up with more work. Wants to be called King Louie. Likes kids. Feels like second fiddle and low man on the totem pole. He is happy, just wants more attention.

It was such an amazing experience, one that I will do again!!! She really got my horses right on. You can tell that she connects to the horses as well, because of the look on the horse's face. How they look and act with their body, they lick and chew and shake their heads and almost "act" out their thoughts.It's AMAZING!!!!!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Is That an Apt.Complex???

Or a housing development in the background of these pics. Ahhh craigslist at it's finest of course. PEOPLE!!! Are you awake??? Why don't you guys ever give your horses a fighting chance? I found these pics that belong to an ad off CL. ACK! With so many horses available for sale these days, ads should be nicely written, with nice photos and people who will actually respond to their emails or voice mails. Oh and one more thing. Do SOMETHING with your horse.

Don't say "Oh well, don't have time to train this one (at all, it's as wild as can be). So come and get 'er." Or you're asking for meat buyers, abusers, rodeos (the bad kind), or who knows what else to come by and pick up that horse. Do ground work if you can't train it, or teach it to lunge.

There are TONS of valuable lessons you can teach a horse, even with minimal time or talent. Short post today, I know. Oh and someone buy this damn horse before it slices it's legs off!!!!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Horse Training By Anatomy. Part 1

Understanding how to train horses starts with a simple anatomy lesson. If you understand how your horse's body works, then you can understand how to train it. Today's lesson is based on weight and the weight distribution of your horse. I have 2 photos that I modified in Paint for a visual understanding.

The first one is of a pick up truck.

We all know where the weight of a pickup is right? If you split this truck in half, as I've done, you'll see a majority of the weight resides in the FRONT half of the truck, making the truck HEAVY on the front end. For example, if you are driving along and then you come to a complete stop, the truck will dive down in the front end temporarily. Why? Because that is where the weight is carried. Now, where does the power and forward motion of the truck come from? From the rear wheels. The rear wheels engage and PUSH the truck forward when we step on the gas pedal. There are many times where we NEED to have the weight of the truck balanced out, where we attempt to get the weight closer to 50/50, by adding bricks or other material into the bed of the truck.

Your HORSE is no different.

Your horse naturally carries a heavier load on it's front end. When sliced down the middle, as shown in the photo, you're looking at about 65-70% of the weight in the front half. Why is any of this so important? Because when training, it is important for us to understand how the horse naturally carries itself.

So what does this all mean??? Well, it's the same as with the pick up truck. We desire to have our horse's weight balanced 50/50 a majority of the time, by why is it so crucial to be balanced? Carrying a majority of it's weight in the front end we can run into some major problems while training such as, a horse not picking the canter, lack of impulsion, not trotting out properly, tripping, peanut pushing, hollowed out spine, not bending into a circle properly, refusing jumps, tripping on trot poles and so much more. Really? All this is reliant on how we ask our horses to carry themselves??? YES.

Now while it is easier for a horse to carry itself on the forehand, it is counter productive to us as riders. What becomes of a horse when we have them properly carrying themselves in a balanced 50/50 manner? Engagement of the hocks and hind end, cadence, balanced transitions and gaits, proper jumping, we can ask for extension and collection properly, balanced circles, a round solid frame, advanced movements such as flying lead changes, half pass, shoulder in/out, haunches in/out, pirouettes, trail courses, dressage tests and reining patterns.

Understanding where your horses weight is, is the first step towards making progress in ANY training program or riding discipline.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Holy Dumb A$$ Batman!!

OK, I have a few simple rules when I train or teach or have working students ride horses for me. One of my main bugaboos is the ever controversial DRAW REINS! I use them, SOMETIMES. My students or clients are NEVER allowed to use them, unless I am there. Why? Because they can be a horse and rider's worst nightmare.

First off, draw reins are not a quick fix in getting your horse to collect and round up. They are never to be used simply by themselves either, because then you have NO brakes and it is just a dumbass idea. In inexperienced or frustrated hands, your horse could get the wrong message and learn that flipping over backwards on you is the only way out.

We as trainers and riders are given tools that can be used for the greater good. BUT, it's the people who do NOT know how to use certain tools that ruin it for everyone and make people think, "Oh draw reins are bad. Shanked bits are bad. Spurs are bad." On and on and on...

In this photo, that I got off of the Bad_Riding Livejournal blog (Which is a very funny blog BTW), this girl is supposedly a TRAINER?!??!?! This is a terrible pic. On too many levels. It's dangerous, the horse is heavy, heavy on the forehand, overflexed, and is only going to learn to brace on those reins and tuck it's chin in lower and lower until FLIP goes the WEASEL!!! Ack... LEARN from this picture! Engrave this pic into your brain that this in my Top Ten Worst Horse Ideas EVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ugh, this makes me want to roll over in my grave...

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Tell Me Please!

So I have been playing with the thought of getting an Animal Communicator to talk with my horses. I've received some very excellent referrals from some friends who've said that these people found out things about their horses that they should have NEVER known... Hmmmm kind of makes you think doesn't it? I'm dying to hear what my horses have to say!!! So I think for shits and gigs I may do it....
If you could talk to your horses, what on earth would you ask them about??? OK, let's make this a wee bit more specific. You get 3 questions to ask each of your horses... GO!!!! Here would be mine...

Rav~ You really think you're the S**T don't you??? Are you happy? Do you like showing?

Sole'~ Are you happy? Do you like performing? Do you want more foals?

Lou~ What was it like as a racehorse? Are you happy? What do you want to do?

Jag~ Are you happy? What do you want to do? Why are you so calm?

OK, OK I just pulled those out of my Arse I'd have to give it more thought. But, seriously what are some questions or answers you'd like to know? Have any of you ever use a communicator?

Monday, July 13, 2009

We Be Chowing!!!

So I just found this site on Facebook tonight and I think it is pretty damn accurate and very helpful! It lists almost all possible feeds and you can input up to 5 horses. VERY HELPFUL!!!!! Which is going to segway me to this.

BOSS!!!! Boss? Yes Boss. Black Oil Sunflower Seeds. Or BOSS. This is quite the new craze apparently in coat and weight management for your horses. Boss, is simply a WILD BIRD FOOD!!! So it is Cheap Cheap!!!! A good friend of mine has started using it with amazing results, however I myself am torn. If you look it up on the web there is about 70% Pro to 30% Neg feedback on it. So, let's discuss it.

  • SUPER High Fat content. Roughly 33% fat. Great for hard keepers.
  • Cheap
  • It is an "oil" seed like flaxseed is, so AMAZING for the coat and hooves.
  • People say their horses LOVE it! So very palatable.
  • Has Vitamins in it.
  • Does NOT require a lot to get results. People say only 1 or 2 cups a day for a healthy coat.


  • There has been no official testing done on the effects of it on horses.
  • VERY high Omega 6 content.
  • People are worried about the hulls. (I soak mine with my horses beet pulp to soften the hulls.)

To me it sounds great! I bought a small bag and only used a small handful to start. Just to test it out a little. See what my horse's manure looks like tomorrow. If it's being digested properly and so forth. Have any of you used it or heard of it? I DO have a hard keeper and would like him fatty fat fat before winter, so could this be the answer to our prayers? (For those of us with hard keepers.) I've been crazy researching it on the net and the only thing I will admit I find mildy dis concerning is that Boss hasn't been researched yet.... So will the proof be in the pudding?

Friday, July 10, 2009

Eye See......

So a student of mine is having some trouble keeping her horse balanced. She emails me today and asks "why oh why her horse won't pick up the right lead and why he won't turn correctly to the right." So today I watched her ride her horse today and the problem was so stinking simple. She was looking down. She was looking down to check his leads, looking down to watch his shoulder. Where her eyes went, the horse's body went. When she looked down her horse dropped his inside shoulder.

People don't think about like they should. And subconsciously, we are ALL guilty of looking down at one time or another. She didn't even realize she was doing it. Horses are VERY sensitive to our weight and when our eyes go down, our heads follow, then our shoulders. When you jump your trainer always says look up or look at the next fence, it's because if we were looking AT the fence the horse would say "HEY! What is she looking AT!!! I have all this weight on my forehand and now I'm freaking, I can't jump and, and..." CRASH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Same with barrel racing, you look at that barrel too early and CRASH!

Do this experiment with your horse. Trot around in the arena and just turn your head and shoulders, 99% of all horses IF they are actually paying attention to you, will turn and follow the direction that your weight is tipping towards.

Be AWARE, if you having issues with your horse's body or shoulder dropping in, or if they won't pick up the correct lead (and it isn't medical related) that it's probably YOU. Stay balanced and LIGHT in your seat, keep both of your shoulders level and keep your head up! Watch with your peripheral vision. Another exercise that is REALLY helpful is just plain close your eyes. You'll never feel anything quite like it. After about 10 to 15 seconds of your eyes being closed all of your other senses kick in to high gear. You'll feel their back move, their legs, their mouth. It is an incredible exercise that ALL my students to at one time or another. It helps with balance and helps you to FEEL your horse and not LOOK at your horse.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Crack A Lackin'

Today was chiropractor day at my barn and oh what that is. Some horses respond really well to it, some don't. One of mine actually kicked the lady's truck when she was putting his spine back in order. I'm usually pretty skeptical when it comes to these things. I mean we've been riding horses for thousands of years without chiro work right???

But alas, I have fallen into the trap as a part of my horses maintenance schedule. I feel it's good for their bodies and I have seen first hand the good it can do some horses. Shoulders back straight, spine aligned, neck popped. Ahhhhh sounds good to me. BUT, here is the part I found most odd. When I asked how to maintain and what stretches or exercises I could do to help the horses stay decent until the next adjustment, the lady told me nothing. That there was nothing I could do. Now I've never used this lady before, but I feel that can't be right. Is it? I mean neck stretches daily are good, and leg stretches, but what else is there? What is anything do you guys use on your horses?? Stretches, aromatherapy, acupressure, oh there is just so much to choose from nowadays!!!

Monday, July 6, 2009

94 And Still GOING!

These are photos of my 94 year old grandfather (and Dad who's making sure he's safe), who INSISTED on riding my 6 yr old paint mare Sole'. If I wasn't there taking the pictures I wouldn't have believed it myself!!!! Freaking AMAZING! We walked all over the farm, down to visit my goats and my other horses. Sole' was such a trooper and packed him around the whole time! I Love this Mare!!!!!

Sunday, July 5, 2009

No Hoof No Horse

A Horse's hooves, to me, can be one of the EASIEST things about horse care if you maintain and stay on top of things, but, for some reason it's the first thing on a horse that often is neglected... Hot weather of the summer can dry out and crack hooves, muddy weather can cause thrush, soft hooves can get abscesses and on and on and on.
Some horses are prone to soft hooves and that's something that an owner needs to be aware of and take extra care in keeping them healthy. SO, here are some tips and products that I go by in order to keep my horse's hooves healthy and NONE of my horse's wear shoes.

  • Stay on top of TRIMS, in the summer hooves grow faster, so a horse that normally goes 8 or 9 weeks in the winter may be at 6 weeks in the summer.

  • Vitamins, my horse's are on Millennium Gold it has more BIOTIN in it, than even Horseshoer's Secret does!!!

  • Pick hooves before and after every ride. Pick hooves at least every other day otherwise. Check for thrush or cracks, pick out the dirt and rocks that also can jammed up there.

  • I condition their hooves at least once or twice a week. I use RainMaker or Hooflex. Both products are wonderful!!!

  • Watch their weight and watch what you feed them. Founder is dangerous!!!

  • Buy a pair of hoof boots if your horse has tender feet and you ride on hard or rocky terrain.

  • Epsom salts, iodine, thrush buster and sugar should be kept at your barn for hoof emergencies.

Be aware of your horse and his hooves. Know that white hooves are softer than dark hooves. Ask a respectable farrier if you have additional concerns about your horses feet. A Horse with No hoof is No horse at all.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Light My Fire

Ahhhhh so with the beautiful fun of the Fourth of July on it's way, it can present quite a problem to those of us who own any animal. Fireworks are loud and scary, they can shake a room, it's a lot to absorb for an animal, especially our horses. So be sure to take some precautions at your farm or boarding facility.
  • Yes, we like to have fun and go to BBQ's and parties, but CHECK on your horses. Make sure they are safe and calm and in a nice stall. If they're not check their pastures and make sure they aren't trying to run through their fences.

  • Bring hoses out in case you have neighbors who light off fireworks and one lands in your pasture and lights it on fire. (This used to happen ALL the time at an old facility I was at.)

  • Have B-Kalm, Calm and Cool, or Ace on hand in case a horse gets too worked up.

  • Spray your roofing on top of the barn, poop pile anywhere that is super dry and could catch fire. (We do this to my house too, spray the roof at dusk so it's nice and damp.

  • Give your horses a snack in the early evening to hopefully distract them for most of the fireworks. Most people are done around 11 or 12.

What other safety tips or experiences do you have when the fireworks are a blaze?