How is the equine industry in Madison County doing? What are some areas that need improvement? What is the typical Madison County equine owner and how active are they in the industry? How are equine businesses in Madison County faring given the recent economic downturn? The Cornell Cooperative Extension wanted to answer these questions in order to determine how they can best service the local equine industry. After researching previous New York State equine surveys, Dani Pidgeon, Intern at the Cornell Cooperative Extension of Madison County, spent the past few months collecting data from her own two surveys. This research was designed to analyze the economic impact of the equine industry in the area, and to point out any areas where improvements could be made to enhance the industry in the area. There were a total of 73 respondents, 29 from equine business owners, and 44 from equine enthusiasts within Madison County. The results give an idea about what a typical equine owner in Madison County is like, the most popular disciplines, and several ideas for improving the equine industry in the area. [Read more…]
BURLINGTON, VT — Horse-savvy 4-H’ers from throughout the state competed June 18 for a chance to represent Vermont in national competition as members of the 4-H Horse Communications Team.
The annual State 4-H Horse Communications Contest took place at the University of Vermont (UVM) Extension State 4-H Office on the UVM campus in Burlington. The top winner in each of three competitions — Public Speaking, Individual Demonstration and Team Demonstration — earned a place on the team that will travel to Louisville, KY, in November to compete at the Eastern National 4-H Horse Round Up.
The team will consist of Jen Carp, Colchester (public speaking), Bethany Demuynck, Underhill (individual demonstration) and Kyle Scott, Milton and Katelyn Patenaude, Derby Line (team demonstration). [Read more…]
by Sally Colby
Two horses stand on a picket line at the entrance to the Federal Artillery Headquarters on a farm outside of Gettysburg, PA. One is Dan, a 21-year old Standardbred x Tennessee Walker gelding, and the other is a Soda, a young Quarter Horse mare. They belong to Morgan Landis, who brought the two horses to Gettysburg to participate in the 150th anniversary events. Although Landis usually takes on the persona of a Union soldier, he’s versatile and is willing to play any role.
People who watch cavalry units in reenactments often wonder how horses are trained to work so closely, lined up tightly against one another with the constant noise of gunfire and cannons. Landis says that it’s mostly a matter of how the horse is trained at home. “A lot of it is getting them used to standing tied on a picket line,” he said. “At home, I train them to a picket by tying them in the barn. That way if they get loose, they can’t go anywhere.” Landis says that it’s helpful to have Dan, the older horse, to help teach Soda who is just getting acquainted with her role as a re-enactment horse. “It’s a lot easier to train a horse with one that’s already trained,” he said. “But I took Soda out on her own for the last two events after she was with Dan for just one day, and she did everything I asked of her without a problem.” [Read more…]
by Laura Rodley
Chivalry is not dead. Knights in armor jousting on Belgians and Percherons and a myriad of other performers, bellydancers, musicians and vendors enduring 95 degree weather drew in crowds of 5,000 during the 3rd annual Mutton and Mead Festival on June 22 and 23, raising funds and food for the non-profits Food Bank of Western Massachusetts and the historic 178 year old Montague Common Hall maintenance. Attendees bringing canned goods received a portion off their ticket price, amassing a total of 3,000 pounds for the Food Pantry serving those in need in Berkshire, Franklin, Hampden, and Hampshire counties in Western Massachusetts. [Read more…]
Every April, a Quarter Horse named Bellboy, started getting insect bites along the midline of his belly, and the bites began festering and oozing. As the sores got worse, so did Bellboy’s attitude.
According to Dr. Anthony Yu, a veterinarian at Ontario’s University of Guelph who specializes in dermatology, the source of Bellboy’s misery is most likely midges, also known as gnats or no-see-ums. [Read more…]
by Mitzi Summers
In my chosen line of work, I quite frequently am asked for help from someone who is having a problem with their horse.
This particular call came from the owner’s husband. He called to tell me about the problem his wife was having with her three year old Pinto-Paint mare. She had not been riding this horse (Domino) very long, but had been making very little progress. He was not a horseman, but he said that his wife (Sally) complained that mostly Domino was just not going forward any more. No matter what she tried, it just seemed to be getting worse and that the filly was so bad that Sally was ready to get rid of her. He asked me if I would come out to help and I of course agreed. [Read more…]
Many people are surprised to learn that dentistry is an important part of caring for horses properly. Similar to humans, horses have two sets of teeth over their lifetime. However, unlike humans, whose secondary or ‘adult’ teeth come in at the size that they will remain, horses’ teeth continue to grow and wear down, and can become problematic if their teeth do not wear evenly, as horses’ teeth continue to erupt from their jaw and grow over the course of their entire lives.
The horse’s baby teeth (deciduous teeth) are temporary, and the first deciduous incisors may erupt before the foal is born. The last baby teeth come in by the time the horse is about eight months old. These begin to be replaced by adult teeth by about the age of two and one-half. By the age of five, most horses have all of their permanent teeth. An adult male horse usually has 40 permanent teeth; while an adult mare may have between 36 and 40, as mares are less likely to have canine (bridle) teeth. [Read more…]
by George Peters
We just hosted two Ranch Horse Shows, and this time I want to write about one of the two basic western events that have a big part of a good overall ranch horse, or therefore a good “Cowboy” horse. Cutting is a foundation without a doubt, but this time I’m into writing about reining horses, or at least getting a good rein on your Western horse.
A reining horse is expected to lope small and large circles, slow or fast with good speed change control and correctness of bend throughout the circles. Then lead change on the “fly”, front and back change of leads to the next circles. The horse may have to do a rollback (a stop, 180 degree pivot, lope off looking like one maneuver), and the crowd pleasers, a number of spins left and right, and the sliding stops and back up.
Over the years, I have seen reining change from fast and furious, to so controlled and smooth and precise that it is Western Dressage. Today the horses are so “framed”, or collected, so soft in the bridle, and their feet are so directed by their riders, it is fun to watch! [Read more…]