From trimming whiskers to painting hooves, many details go into preparing a horse for the show ring, but preparing a rider requires an equal amount of skill. Lapels must be pinned, boots and sometimes gloves must be taped and makeup must be flawless. And then there is always the challenge of the horse show bun.
CH Moonlight Memories gets a hug from McGee Bosworth.When it comes to mares, their reputations precede them. From often-touted clichés to humorous tee-shirts, it is clear that they are known for being touchy, moody and just generally difficult. Yet there are a number of stunningly successful mares on today’s show circuit, proving that these complicated creatures can still go on to great success. Some even believe that a good mare has the potential to be an even better show horse than a gelding or stallion, if you are able to bring out the best in them – something that takes patience, cooperation and a willingness to listen and learn.
The nights are getting longer, the temperatures are dropping and the horses are getting fuzzy. The holidays are upon us and it is time to celebrate with our barn family and friends. Since show season is done (for most regions), it means that the horses have probably had their show shoes pulled and are enjoying some playtime. It’s time to throw a wreath on the barn doors and let your students go to town on the lesson horses’ stall doors. But what else could you do to bring some holiday cheer into your barn family? No matter what winter holiday you’re celebrating, there are many ways to enjoy an evening of fun, food and friends.
It’s easy to get down on the show horse world. When you’re dealing with expensive and sensitive animals like Saddlebred horses the stakes are high, and so is the number of things that can – and do – go wrong.
Horses get sick, go lame and pull shoes. Riders get injured before big shows or miss leads or diagonals in the ring. People make thoughtless or hurtful comments in moments of tension that find their way back to your ears. There is always someone better than you and someone who has more money than you. And, of course, the judges’ decisions don’t always match your own.
But, while it’s easy to forget in the difficult times, being a part of the show horse industry also comes with a multitude of blessings, and this holiday season seems like an appropriate time to take a step back and remember why we first fell in love with an industry that may be fast-paced and competitive, but is also supportive, informative, challenging and even life-affirming.