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It's Time to Re-Think Early Weaning of Horses

For the most part, the symbiotic relationship between the domestic horse and humankind works out well. The horse gets immunization from fatal diseases, readily available food and protection from predators . . . but one change that receives little discussion is weaning. read more

Solving The Puzzle of Horses Who Pull

Article discusses horses who are strong on the bit, pull, bolt and take off when riding. Includes solutions and suggestions. read more

A Camcorder Can Be An Educational Tool

You can video any ride you want with a helmet camera, but the educational benefit is probably limited to those disciplines for which reliving the line or track is important. The camera we tried the Sony Action Cam (see sidebar), has a high-definition/slow-motion mode, which can provide footage to analyze movement, footfalls and gaits of horses you own or are considering buying. read more

Horses And Trailers Don’t Always Go Together

Horses seem to have a sixth sense about it—everything is ready and you’re right on time for a lesson, a show or the vet. It’s time to put the horse on the trailer. And then he... read more

Begin Your Quest For The “Right” Bit

Do you know why you can buy hundreds of different bits from tack stores all around the country? Because finding the ”perfect” bit is like getting to the pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. This great quest is one entirely without GPS guidance, and it really can be never-ending, since horses are individuals whose needs and preferences often change as their training progresses, as they get older, or if your riding progresses. The bit your horse seemed to like so well may not be what he wants now, and you may have to combine educated guessing with divine inspiration read more

Before Merlin…Tabor

I believe Tabor came in to my life to prepare me for Merlin.  The same friend who gave me Merlin gave me Tabor Dance, then seven, about two years earlier. Tabor had bowed a tendon twice and recovered.  He was a beautifully built gray gelding, possessing exceptional physical gifts and jumping scope, like Merlin. But he had a history of dodgy jumping, frequently refusing or running out and depositing his riders. He was clearly a worrier—he wasn’t even a fan of being turned out and would often walk back and forth along the fence like a caged tiger until read more

Merlin Was Afraid of Life—and Jumping

Nearly 20 years ago, a steeplechase trainer who is a good friend gave me a three-year-old Thoroughbred gelding, a horse with whom I would develop an unforgettably rewarding relationship, despite the many challenges that he presented.  We would enjoy Master Merlin’s company for 13 years, from foxhunting through eventing at the CCI2* level, winning numerous events at training, preliminary and intermediate levels. But it was far from an easy start. Self-Confidence Issues. Merlin, at 17.2 hands, was a big-moving horse, blessed with physical gifts that should have made read more

Body Building For Every Horse

Every training activity we do can create improved performance through building a stronger, more flexible partner. These exercises are designed to do just that. But before undertaking some of the more complex exercises, you must be able to ride your horse forward and straight, and you must also be able to achieve true balance and counter-bend easily. These exercises should be performed regularly. Performing them correctly will build strength as well as self-discipline, in both you and your horse. (The letters refer to those in a dressage arena.) THE BOX. This is an exercise read more

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