Horse news in brief, 2006-11-29

29 11 2006


Wild ponies on Assateague Island are threatening the environment, and the National Park Service is considering ways to keep the pony population down…

Mr. Ed

First annual Pantomine Horse Grand National held in Oldham, England…

High hay costs are leading to increased cases of abandoned and neglected horses in Oregon…

Three ponies were reportedly lifted into the air as a tornado struck the quiet English town of Boarhunt…

Some tips for talking your parents into buying you an equine for Christmas…

The FDA is warning horse owners about fumonisons in horse feed…

New research raises the possibility that Tutankhamun died from a fall from a horse or chariot…

The annual Riding of the Marches in Currie, Scotland, may become an endangered custom if no one can be found to lead the ride…

Koniks in Kent

28 11 2006

Koniks in Kent

A herd of wild horses have been imported to help restore a nature reserve.

The horses will be let out to roam free on an area grazing marsh on the river Stour, just five minutes’ walk from Canterbury High Street on Wednesday.

Thanks to the horses grazing on the site the land will become a haven for rare plants, animals and birds.

The horses from Holland are the closest living relatives of the extinct Tarpan, the wild forest horse that roamed Britain in prehistoric times.

The project has been organised by the Wildwood Trust and Canterbury City Council.


A few more freebies (plus contests)

25 11 2006

my Icelandic horse popped in to say good-morning, originally uploaded by Ms Nomer.

You know the drill: Do check the fine print to see if they’ll send to where you live; many may be US only. Also, please don’t abuse the companies’ goodwill! In case you missed it the first time around, here’s the other Freebies post with even more offers.

Sample of Mojojoint supplement (no PO boxes please)

Free Animal Poison Control Center magnet from the ASPCA

Sample of Crocodile Herbal Bug Discouragement (Best. Name. EVER.)

Sign up to win a free eBucket of horse treats

…or make your own with these free recipes from Animal Snackables

Download a free copy of Model Horse magazine (PDF format)

Free horse trading card with SASE (US only?)

All-natural horse treat sample ($3 s/h)

Free rope sample and catalogue from

Rein-Aid offers a free VHS video explaining the benefits of their products

Free horsey cross-stitch pattern

Bay Area Equestrian Network has legal forms (bill of sale, boarding agreement, etc.) you can download for your own use (PDF format)

Enter to win freebies from Your Horse magazine (UK)

Call for your sample of Winnies organic supplements

Embroider a horse tapestry with this free pattern

Free polarfleece blanket while supplies last (offer not valid in California)

Enter to win a $1000 shopping spree at Miller Harness

Download and print coupons for: Vita Flex, Rio Vista (grooming products and supplements), Farnam

When Canadians compete

24 11 2006

Interesting snapshot of the horse industry in Canada (research was done in 1998; don’t know how it might have changed in the meantime). Of the 64% of those surveyed in the random sample who are involved in competition with the horses that they ride or drive, approximately 60% compete in more than one discipline. When asked “In which discipline do you MOSTLY compete, please choose ONE”, here’s how people responded:

Hunter-jumper/Show jumping 25.78%
Dressage 18.70%
Other (not included in list) 13.88%
Western pleasure 9.07%
Barrel racing/Pole bending 6.52%
Team cattle penning 3.68%
Breed-specific competitions 3.40%
Reining 3.12%
Driving 2.55%
Rodeo 1.7%
Halter/Line classes 0.85%
Competitive trail riding 0.85%
Endurance riding 0.57%
Roping 0.57%
Saddleseat 0.57%
Polo 0.28%

Source: Equine Canada

Breakdown by province:

British Columbia:

1. Dressage
2. Hunter-jumper
3. Western pleasure
4. Eventing
5. Other


1. Other
2. Western pleasure
3. Hunter-jumper
4. Reining
5. Team cattle penning


1. Western pleasure
2. Other
3. Hunter-jumper
4. (tie) Barrel racing/Halter/Dressage


1. Western pleasure
2. Other
3. Hunter-jumper
4. (tie) Barrel racing/Halter/Dressage


1. Hunter-jumper
2. Dressage
3. Eventing
4. Western pleasure
5. Driving


1. Other (gymkhana)
2. (tie) Western pleasure/Hunter-jumper
3. Dressage
4. Barrel racing

New Brunswick:

1. Dressage
2. Hunter-jumper
3. Western pleasure
4. Eventing
5. Driving

Prince Edward Island:

1. Western pleasure
2. Halter
3. Reining
4. (tie) Competitive trail/Hunter-jumper

Nova Scotia:

1. Hunter-jumper
2. Dressage
3. Eventing
4. Western pleasure
5. Other

Newfoundland and Labrador:

1. Western pleasure
2. Other (gymkhana)
3. (tie) Hunter-jumper/Dressage
4. Barrel racing

No idea what “Other” usually means, or why it was identified as “Gymkhana” in two provinces when it wasn’t specified elsewhere.

Source: Equine Canada

I don’t wanna know. Well, maybe I do

20 11 2006

Here are some search engine terms people used to find Bridlepath:

“out of print, “Friesian horses”

blogflux directory of morocco

big toy horse feral friends

the fattest pony in the world

horse killpen

chains for training of horses abusive?

and my personal favourite…

had cast removed & hand really hairy

Erm, I hope they found what they were looking for…

New book: Tim The Tiny Horse

20 11 2006

Tim the Tiny Horse by Harry Hill

UK comic Harry Hill has written a book called Tim the Tiny Horse:

Tim, the Tiny Horse is definitely the smallest horse you could ever find. His stable is a matchbox with a tic-tac box conservatory and with a cocktail stick, some cotton and a hawthorn berry, Tim can play swingball. In this book, you can see what it’s like being Tim: the highs and lows of trying to get into radio; making a reality TV programme; or just kicking back and enjoying a hula hoop with his best friend Fly. Then there’s the serious stuff – Tim thinking about the meaning of life and his own mortality, Tim dealing with Fly’s new girlfriend, and, of course, his passion for Anna Ford on the telly…

Available through Amazon UK. Tiny Tim!


20 11 2006


Horse riders from the Middle East compete in a 120 km (75 miles) International Endurance Race in the desert of Wadi Rum in southern Jordan November 14, 2006. (Link)

They did it again

20 11 2006

Clayton the clone

This photo provided by ViaGen shows the cloned horse Clayton with owner barrel racer champion Charmayne James near Boerne, Texas, Nov. 1, 2006. Clayton is the clone of James’ gelding Scamper, the retired 10-time world champion. James paid an Austin-based company $150,000 (US) to clone Scamper.

If you could clone a horse, would you? And if so, which horse? If we could get Figure back à la Jurassic Park I’d be all for it myself. 😉

Diving horses in Atlantic City

20 11 2006

A horse is seen in this file photograph, as it makes a plunge into a pool of water on the Steel Pier in Atlantic City, N.J., Friday night, June 25, 1993. Over the objections of animal-rights activists, the diving horses returned to the boardwalk after a 15-year hiatus. The distinctive pier opened in 1898 and juts 1,000 feet into the Atlantic Ocean, but it closed in mid-October 2006 to make way for new development, most likely a mixture of high-end condominiums, restaurants and shops. (Link)

Death of a legend: Gem Twist euthanized at 27

20 11 2006

Gem Twist and Greg Best

Famed American showjumper Gem Twist was euthanized November 18 at the age of 27. Godspeed, old man:

It is a loss that will make anyone who ever saw him jump reflect on the privilege of having watched him. The high-flying grey gelding, who was 27, captured the imagination of thousands with his dramatic style and bold personality. His death brings down the curtain on an era of stellar jumping, when another of the “great greys,” Milton, ridden by John Whitaker of Great Britain, and Canada’s Big Ben, with Ian Millar up, contested the greatest prizes with Gem and his young rider, Greg Best.

Gem’s sire was Good Twist, the mount of Frank Chapot in the days when he was captain of the U.S. Equestrian Team. Good Twist was quick on course, but small. Gem inherited his sire’s speed, combining it with size and scope that made him capable of jumping anything a course designer could build.

Gem, bred at the Chapot family’s Chado Farm in Neshanic Station, N.J., where he died on Saturday, was sold to Michael Golden, a resident of a nearby town. But Gem was no mount for an amateur, so the horse was sent back to Frank in order to nurture the young talent. Michael was the ideal owner who listened to the trainer. Although he was not on Gem’s back, Michael nevertheless enjoyed an exciting ride around the world for years as Gem became an international star of the highest magnitude.

Read the rest at EquiSearch.

Montana man on the journey of a lifetime

20 11 2006

Lee Crafton

After being diagnosed with lymphoma last year, horse logger Lee Crafton decided to take a long, slow trip. He packed up a covered wagon pulled by his two Suffolk Punches, Tom and Max, andset off for Boston to see his childhood sweetheart. Read more about Lee and his journey at the Crookston Times, and at his website, Lee the Horse Logger.

I’m of two minds about this…

20 11 2006

(Thanks all for all the wonderful comments and links of late. I apologize for the lack of updates but I’m back teaching this week so things are a little…nutty 🙂 Please bear with me until normal service resumes)

So horses and horse properties might be the Next Big Thing for yuppies. This Washington Post article (cited by Darley at Equitrekking — yo, Blogger users, turn your trackbacks on, for heaven’s sake) says that “[d]evelopers across the Washington region are building extravagant equestrian centers in their subdivisions to lure buyers of luxury homes in the hope that horses are the new golf. Three developments with horse centers are being built in the suburbs, which could double the number of area equestrian sites that are combined with residential communities.” While I’m all for promoting horses, are people just jumping into this because it’s trendy? Are they going to have all the knowledge and skills they’ll need to keep their horses healthy and safe? They’re a lot more complicated to care for than cats or dogs. What do y’all think?

Barbaro update, and a challenge to those who say they love horses

14 11 2006

Barbaro’s cast has now been removed, and he is said to be making slow but substantial progress, say his vets.


Now, here’s where the “if you love horses” part comes in.

Barbaro has received a lot of attention in the months since the Preakness, and deservedly so; very few horses recover from that sort of injury. When I saw his jockey pull him up, and that dangling foot, my heart was in my mouth. I was somewhat relieved when they bundled him into the horse ambulance; at least he wasn’t going to be euthanized on the track, like Go For Wand was. He would not be added to the statistics for 2006, although the numbers for 2005 are horrendous enough (753 racehorses died as a result of track-related injuries that year).

If you are still moved by Barbaro, if you really love horses, don’t send him a card. Don’t make another video pastiche for YouTube. Do something for all the other horses who don’t have the world on their side.

Make a donation to the Barbaro Fund at the Penn School of Veterinary Medicine, buy a Barbaro wristband, the Breyer Barbaro, or the Barbaro print: all proceeds will benefit horse-related charities.

Volunteer at a local horse rescue, or send a donation of money, old tack and other usable goods. I’ll bet Canadian horse rescues would be happy to accept that Canadian Tire money you never get around to using.

Adopt a PMU foal, or sponsor a PMU mare.

Make your next eBay purchase from a charity or horse rescue which is trying to raise funds. MissionFish lists many of these; go to Search, then choose Environment and Protection of Animals under Nonprofit Type.

Volunteer at a local therapeutic riding centre and help someone else discover the joy that horses can bring to a person’s life.

Support Brigadier’s Law, which supports a proposal to amend the Criminal Code of Canada giving Police Service Animals the much needed protection they require, under the law. (Brigadier)

If you really love horses, and not just because it’s cool to be sentimental over Barbaro, do something meaningful for all the horses who serve us, and suffer in silence, yet still trust humans to do the right thing. They deserve it just as much as any Kentucky Derby winner.

Recall of contaminated horse feed

14 11 2006

Western Stockmen’s of Caldwell, Idaho, a business unit of J.R. Simplot Company, is recalling all Pride Mature Horse feed with the lot number 7701-050306. The lot might contain monensin sodium (Rumensin), a drug compound approved for use in some livestock species which can be fatal if fed to horses. Read more (link via HorsesRing).

Ghost horse in Dartmoor

14 11 2006

Img 426 Dartmoor Pony, originally uploaded by Bryan26.


Hallowe’en is over, I know; will you forgive me for posting another spooky tale? This one is from the Fortean Times site:

I live on the edge of Dartmoor, England which is range of moorland steeped in ancient history. Whilst being on the moor several strange things have happened to me. I’ve heard children laughing by a gate on a ruined farm and I’ve had had feelings of terrible evil in the area where many people have inexplicably driven off the road and been injured. The ghost here is known as the “hairy hands”.

However, this story is one about a horse. I kept my horses on a farm on Dartmoor because the riding is so good. One day we all went off to the horse market leaving one man behind to care for the other animals. Apparently, whilst we were gone he went out in the yard to feed the horses and saw a grey horse standing by the gate. At first he couldn’t think how he got in as the gate was padlocked. Then he thought perhaps we had bought him at the market and sent him back with a neighbour giving the neighbour a key and he had locked it again after him. Off he went to get another feed but when he got back the horse had gone. Very shocked he went into a neighbouring cottage and told the old man who lived there.

“What did the horse look like” asked the old man. Jerry described him. “Well years ago there was an old horse just as you descibed, who always stood at the gate on market days and when I came home from school, I’d give him my lunchtime apple.” We all pulled Jerry’s leg about knocking back the whisky whilst we were out but two weeks after this happened, the old man died and no-one ever saw the horse again.

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