A Celebration of What?

Hope everyone ate, drank and visited too much and is now relaxing 🙂

Why do they call it “The Holidays”? They are anything BUT, I long for real life to begin again, and c’mon school, willya start already???

Anyways…back to horses. Found this today on the web:

My first thought, celebrating WHAT? Spurring and yanking? Bizarre versions of the horse’s natural gaits?

Yuch….just yuch. Some are worse than others, about 1/4 of the way through the video there is a chestnut who is head bobbing lame, but maybe the rider can’t feel this, as the horses don’t travel anywhere near normally anyways. The dark bay horse they follow from 4:59 and on for a bit is doing the weirdest version of a lope/canter I have ever seen in my life.

Is this truly what is pinning these days in the Western Pleasure ring? It looks anything but pleasurable. The horses look miserable and the riders are too busy jamming them into their perverted version of “collection” to be enjoying the ride. Although I do not ride Western and will not pretend to know a lot about it I would rather watch horses cut cows etc and travel happily, as they were designed to.

In many sports we modify their way of going to a degree, but there is a healthy way to do it. This is no better than Rollkur, another thing I absolutely hate!

Do any of these folk, the W/P bunch or the Rollkur clowns, think their horses can possibly be anything but miserable, and dreading their work? And WHY do judges pin this crap? Is it the sheep mentality? Are they afraid to step outside the accepted box of what is “good” and a “winning ride”? I’ll never be qualified to be a judge but I sure would like to, I wouldn’t pin any of them…they’d all get the gate!

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About crow131

I'm a happy camper 95% of the time, I love animals and kids....and some adults. I believe in Karma and am a spiritual and moral person. Bad people may gain in this world but they are still bad.... I have many interests, including horses, birds, growing my own food, art, writing, the Runes....yes, it is all over the map. I feel some of us are here to care for those who are not cared for by those who should care for them-if that makes any sense ;-)
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8 Responses to A Celebration of What?

  1. trailrider20 says:

    Supposedly western was originated by the cowboys of the “old west”. I’d give anything to see the look on some of these old cowpoke’s faces if they saw what was going on now. If you want to see good horses you have to look over at rodeo. A horse that actually has to do a job cannot look like this, move like this, or be ridden in this abusive way.

  2. CHV says:

    A good, properly trained pleasure horse is a pleasure to ride. The barn I help at has one who is now in his mid thirties. He’s not completely sound any more, but he still gives lessons to complete beginners, small children, and special needs students (He can just about manage to walk and trot around with a light weight). We can’t retire him completely because if we do he sulks and stops eating. This is a horse who literally pouts if you walk past him carrying a bridle. “What about me?”

    He’s slow, he always was slow, but it was a relaxed kind of slow. He used to be a great trail and string horse, carrying non-riders at his steady mosey. He doesn’t care who’s on him, how well or badly they ride, what kind of tack you’ve put on his back (He did WESTERN pleasure and is now teaching ENGLISH) – all he wants to do is plod around happily, ears pricked. His gaits were comfortable – when he could still do it he had a true rocking horse canter, although he wouldn’t always go readily into it – he was already old and had always been a bit lazy). His trot is even and smooth, and he goes in that level pleasure frame…which really IS comfortable when done right.

    He’s a registered Quarter Horse and supposedly won “quite a few points” in his day…twenty plus years ago. Now, I’m sure, he’d be “too fast” for them.

    I look at that horse – sound into his early thirties, still up to some work even now, visibly old but still with his ears pricked – then I look at that and go “What HAPPENED?” Those horses aren’t going to be sound at thirty. If they’re sound now. And I doubt any of them put their head in the bridle with their mouth open or pout if they aren’t chosen to be ridden that day.

  3. trailrider20 says:

    I think this horse goes back to what we were discussing a few posts back, horses that just happen to fit with what they are doing, and do it well into old age because mentally they are into it even though they may not have the conformation for it. Not that that necessarily has to do with this Quarter Horse, but what the horse LIKES to do is most important.

  4. CHV says:

    If you mean the one I’m talking about, he did also have the conformation for it. He doesn’t look like much now – he looks like an old scruffy horse – but even four-five years ago he looked nice. Well put together. Heavier type of Quarter Horse, quite a big butt, solid. But I have no doubt that he loved showing pleasure with his personality.

  5. crow131 says:

    Trail I would too! They would likely say “Dang what’s up with that poor critter?”
    I so agree CHV, I can’t see any of those horses looking forward (or missing out) on being ridden like your old pal.
    So true about what they like to do, some like to lope along and would hate being in speed events, so want to run barrels and would hate being forced into a slow lope. My last app/thb loved to do dressage and hated the trails…I was trying to give him a break from the ring, but he did not enjoy it at all.

  6. CHV says:

    That’s an odd one, Crow, most horses like the trail! Maybe he found it boring?

    But I agree. Half of the battle is finding a horse that enjoys what you’re asking of it – and there certainly are horses out there that enjoy a relaxed lope around the ring. I think part of the problem is trying to squeeze round horses into square holes.

  7. HJK says:

    There is a lot of bad in this video but there’s also some good. Check out a blonde rider on a bay going round the ring (the indoor) at a relaxed (but forward) posting trot on a loose rein. This is doing it right. Allow the horse to relax their back and stretch before you ask for heavy collection. She’s not the only one, a few are definitely going more “forward” than they would in the actual class.
    I’m trying to focus on the good as there is just so much bad. I would have liked to have seen how those “forward” horses looked and performed in the class. I wonder if they would have placed?

  8. crow131 says:

    LOL he was an odd one CHV, very much a thinker. But he had also only been ridden in the ring, for who-knows-how-long before I got him. He was quite terrified of the big wide world! So I started riding him outside the ring but beside the rail and progressed til we could go all the way into the back fields. Even got off and let him graze a bit to show him it could be nice away from the ring. But he never got to enjoying it, he was like a spring ready to spring at all times, and only did it because I asked him to. One of our funniest hacks was when they came and did the big round bales….the day before there had been none. Oh boy those bales were out to get him! So I did not ask him to hack out a lot, seeing as it was only me enjoying it.

    I would like to see if they placed too HJK, I do hope so!

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