Veterinary medicine practices today offer many considerably ‘new’ methods of treatment in addition to traditional medicine and therapies for horse owners to choose from. The old-fashioned ‘horse doctors’ were limited in their practice; oftentimes limited to utilizing whatever was readily available — and in many cases a goodly dose of ‘hoping for the best.’ There are modern tools available today that the horse doctors in days of yore couldn’t even dream of, such as portable X-rays, ultra-sound and other such ‘fancy’ machinery; as well as a return to ancient forms of therapy, such as the use of herbs, heat and cold. Gone are the days of the one-pill-fits-all situations “and let’s just hope for the best.” [Read more…]
While snow stubbornly lingered well into spring amid portions of the Tug Hill paddock of Ernie and Irene Bragg, several newborn foals were cozy within the meticulous rough hewn stables nearby. The North Country of NYS Route 177, Barnes Corners, is a harsh, rugged locale with around 325 inches of snow this past winter, hardly a mecca for foals. Here veteran farrier and trainer Ernie Bragg and his wife Irene of R J Performance Horses, Inc., are meeting the challenge of one small boy’s dream of raising and training quality cow horses. [Read more…]
Show season is finally here. For many horse owners, shows are the culmination of all of the trouble they have gone to throughout the long, hard winter. They are a showcase for the culmination of lessons, studying, and the hours of training and practicing.
In theory, showing should be an enjoyable experience. You are at an event where practically everyone wants to be there. [Read more…]
Planning a vacation for horse owners presents unique problems. Unlike cats and dogs that can be boarded at kennels, horses must often be left at home. For horses left at home while the owners are away, having someone to feed them and do the daily chores while you are gone is a must. Likewise, for horses that are kept at a boarding facility or out on pasture, having someone check on them offers peace of mind.
Where do you begin? How do you go about finding this ideal person? Start with existing networking sources in the horse industry: family, friends, trainers, riding schools, veterinarians tack and feed stores, internet, etc. If you know what you are looking for, all of these can be helpful. [Read more…]
The American Thoroughbred can trace its ancestry back to three foundation sires: the Darley Arabian, the Godolphin Arabian, and the Byerly Turk. These horses were named after their owners: Thomas Darley, Lord Godolphin and Captain Robert Byerly, and were brought from the Mediterranean Middle East to England at around the turn of the 17th century. They were bred to the native horses of England, which were strong and sturdy, measuring an average of just 14 hands. The result of this breeding produced horses that could carry a rider but were speedy over longer distances, which added a new dimension to the flourishing sport of horse racing. Today, The Jockey Club (which received a certificate of incorporation from the State of New York in 1894) is the breed registry for Thoroughbred horses in the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico. It is dedicated to the improvement of Thoroughbred breeding and racing. [Read more…]
In February of this year I was again fortunate enough to be summoned to South Africa to teach and train at many of the local riding establishments. The journey there is always a bit difficult — the plane ride plus waiting at the airports for connections takes up well over 26 hours. But there is a feeling of camaraderie in the plane (or acceptance of mutual suffering), and passengers are usually more than eager to help each other if necessary. [Read more…]
There’s no doubt that miniature horses are growing in popularity, and for good reason: they require less space than full-sized horses, and can keep the average horse owner busy with both serious competition and leisure activities.
Carla DuRand, who raises miniature horses with her mother Linda Palmer in Gettysburg, PA, says that although it’s easy to think of miniature horses in much the same way as a large dog, it’s important to remember that except for size, minis have all of the traits of full-size horses. [Read more…]
The Sullivan County Annual 4-H Clinic and Riding Demonstrations day was held at Oak Ridge Farm, Youngsville, NY on Sunday, May 4. Jill and Pat Welsh offered their spacious indoor arena for the event; which began at 8:30 a.m. and continued on all throughout the day, servicing a number of enthusiastic 4-Hers and their parents. Three clinicians were on hand: Marcy Ehrman, of Liberty, NY; Jeannette Moser-Orr, of Delhi, NY; and Mitzi Summers, of the Albany, NY area. [Read more…]