Today’s Horse Facts: The Rocky Mountain Horse

August 22, 2015

The Rocky Mountain Horse 

If you’d like to drool over a most amazing breed of horses, then look at the horse facts about the Rocky Mountain Horse:

1.  The breed developed in the 1800s in the Appalachian Plateau of Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, and Alabama, a cross between Spanish horses and eastern stock.

2.  The breed is sturdy with four smooth gaits.

3.  In 1986, the Rocky Mountain Horse Association was formed to help preserve the breed.

4.  The breed is considered “rare” by the American Livestock Breeds Conservatory.

5.  Their colors are numerous, but the most common color is black  or chocoate brown with flaxen mane and tail, but no white is allowed above the knee or hock.

6.  They stand from 14.2 to 16 hands tall.

7.  Their four-beat gait is similar to that of the Tennessee Walking Horse gait.

8.  They are shown in a variety of classes in both Western and English.

9.  They’re most popular as trail riding horses because of their smooth gait and endurance.

10. The Rocky Mountain Horse, with its often long flaxen mane and tail,  has star-struck beauty that equals that of any other breed.

(Most information taken from

Check out Marsha’s newest book, SNOW, PHANTOM STALLION OF THE POCONOS


Dallis Parker meets the horse of her dreams in a strange encounter,

and her life is changed forever.


(writers’ blog)





Today’s Horse Facts: Why Do Girls Love Horses?

August 15, 2015

Why Do Girls Love Horses?

Here are some horse facts for you that really are nothing more than my personal opinions.

I was born with a silver spur in my mouth. As long as I can remember, I have loved horses and everything about them. I even love the smell of them, including their manure. (It’s a much sweeter smell than other animals’ droppings. Only a hopeless horse lover who’s got horse blood in her veins would truly understand.)

I often have wondered why such a high percentage of us girls love horses so much. Even into our teen years and adulthood, we females have a love for the equine sect that sometimes borders on irrational behavior.

I’ve come up with two theories, which I’ll now allow you to ponder. If you’re a female and a horse lover, choose the one that best suits your innermost desire to be in the presence of one of God’s most beautiful creations—the horse:

Theory Number One: It all started with Adam and Eve. We gals know the trouble began when Eve ate the forbidden fruit and then took control of the situation by controlling Adam. “Love me or I’ll leave you and go live with Mr. and Mrs. Ape!”

barrel racing 1Well, he loved her by joining in the sin of disobedience, thus, casting all of the human race into turmoil.

From Eve right down to modern you and me, we gals have an inborn desire to control someone or something bigger than ourselves. We can’t blame God for this because He never wired us to sin; we chose, rather, to use his gifts of foresight and organizational skills to tell everyone what to do and to control the situation. (Our husbands and other guys really don’t get this “plan ahead” thing, do they?) Usually, these gifts help control situations as long as we gals handle them with wisdom; otherwise, we’re branded as “bossy know-it-alls.”

So, as little girls, we’ve looked at horses as something “bigger than ourselves” that need us to care for them, to love them, and to control them so they don’t go charging full steam ahead into the barn wall. The feeling of power that sweeps over a gal as she sits in the saddle and puts those reins in her hands is something quite hard to Australian Pony 3explain. Somehow, the horse knows that we’re in control and complies. And we female equestrians enjoy every minute of ruling over that powerful animal with no guilt trip whatsoever like we suffer when we try to rule over our husbands, boyfriends, dads, or brothers. (Or the pastor? Yikes!) There certainly IS a place in the universe for us females to back off. Working with a horse is not one of them, so yank those reins, baby!

Theory Number Two: We females love horses because they are, in my opinion, God’s most beautiful, gorgeous, stupendous, heart-melting, and fascinating creatures. Except for those pesky men who still want us to let them hold the reins. Even in our teen years when our emotions and sensitivities come alive, we might value a ride in the woods with our beloved horse just as much as a date with Mr. Sixteen-Year-Old Handsome. It’s a mystery that no one’s ever been able to solve. Most girls are attracted to horses like horse shoes are to magnets.

So, gals, keep on loving those equines. Life is much richer by far if you have a horse in your life.

Plastic Horse Model and Wooden Buggy & Horse Model

Plastic Horse Model
and Wooden Buggy & Horse Model

Marsha Hubler, best-selling author of the Keystone Stables Series


(writers’ blog)

Today’s Horse Facts: English or Western?

July 17, 2015

English or Western?

It’s just one of those known horse facts that I suppose many equestrians ride their horses in the way, or style, they’ve been taught. By style, I mean either English or Western, two distinctly different techniques to ride a mount. By the way, the horse must be trained in either English, Western, or both because the techniques are so different.

Let’s briefly look at these two riding styles so you understand the major differences between them:
English vs. Western
1. English is known as the formal riding style while Western is considered more laid-back. The major difference between English and Western, besides the saddles and riders’ attire, is that with English riding, the rider holds each of two reins with his hands separated, a rein in each hand. In Western, the rider holds both reins in one hand and “neck reins” the horse to turn him left or right.
English.Saddle2. The English saddle is usually lighter and is the “bare necessity” with a thick pad underneath to support the rider. It has no horn (protruding stem) on the front of the saddle to help the rider hang on, and the stirrups hang freely. The Western saddle is much heavier, usually has fancy cut leather, has the horn, and fancy fenders with stirrups on the end.
3. Although the walk and canter are similar, riding the horse’s trot is quite different in both styles. In English, the rider must learn to “post” or raise himself forward out of the saddle with every other beat of the horse’s trot. In Western, the rider “sits” the entire time during a trot.Western Saddle
4. Although Western riding is the most popular for trail riding, both English and Western riding styles are used in show-ring competition. It’s quite easy to spot the difference in dress, though. In Western competition, the riders look like they’re riding the range out West. In English showing, the riders look like they’re on their way to a tea with Queen Elizabeth. However, in both competitions, even in rodeos, contestants are seen wearing helmets, or “hard hats,” to protect themselves from serious injury.

We could go on with other differences in the riding styles, but for a start, let’s say you’ve just gotten “the scoop” on riding English or Western.



Horse Facts About Horse Care

Horse Facts About Horse Care

The average Joe doesn’t know beans about caring for a horse. Horses need a lot of space, a lot of food, and a lot of TLC. A horse isn’t like a dog that you can keep in your living room or garage, feed once or twice a day out of a soup can or with table scraps, and use a pooper scooper for tiny piles. And when extreme weather conditions enter the picture, a horse owner must know how to take care of that beautiful, expensive equine.

Let’s look at some simple horse facts about caring for your horse in extreme weather:

If you own a horse and if you live anywhere in the U.S.A. that has extremely cold winters AND extremely hot summers, then you probably do keep a watchful eye on your best furfriend all year round. If you’re in the far regions of South America or Australia, then you’re protecting him right now from the blast of winter. Here in northern U.S.A., we’re having extreme heat and humidity for days on end, a VERY dangerous weather pattern for horses. But first let’s discuss how to get your horse through the winter.

If you do live anywhere that has rough-and-tough snowy winters, are you tough and brave enough to ride him in the bitter cold weather? One thing you must remember is to make sure he’s not put in the barn with sweat all over him. Yes, a horse will sweat from a good run, even in the cold weather. Once you untack him, he needs to be wiped clean, groomed, covered with a warm blanket, and put out of the wind or drafts. And make sure he has a nice thick layer of sawdust and/or straw in his stall to keep his feet warm. And give him a little bit of a grain and hay snack to help keep him warm as he snoozes.  Horses are proned to pneumonia, which can kill them in the blink of a lazy eye. So don’t neglect your horse in the winter months.

Now about the summer months. Hot, humid weather can be very dangerous for a horse, especially an older one. On days when the temp reaches the 90s and the humidity causes the heat index to reach 100, a wise equestrian will do his best to shelter his horse from the relentless heat:

1. Lock him in the barn. DON’T let him stand out in the sun.
2. If you have to ride him in the heat of the day, DON’T run him, and don’t ride him long. Keep him in the shade as much as possible.
3. Wet him down often with cool water and bug juice. (Horse flies are more vicious in hot weather, and they can suck the strength out of your horse if he gets numerous bites.)
4. Make sure he has lots of fresh, cool water to drink.
5. Don’t feed him grain during the day. Grain is a heat producer.

Years ago, my older and most favorite horse, Rex, scared the wits out of me. On a hot summer day, I looked out in the pasture to see if he was standing in his stall. (It was an open stall of which he could go in and out).But Rex wasn’t in the barn. He was in the small corral, stretched out on his side and not moving a muscle.

I went bonkers and ran to him, thinking he was dead. Thankfully, he hadn’t died, but he was drenched in sweat and not moving. I immediately called the vet, who told me that Rex was having a heat stroke. The vet said I needed to get Rex up on his feet,  wet him down, and walk him slowly for a while.

Following the vet’s advice, I got Rex aroused, and to make a long story short, he recovered.

After that incident, Rex NEVER had the option to walk out of his stall on a hot, humid day. I made sure he was in the shade with fresh cool water thereafter, and he lived to be the ripe old age of 27.

So, if you have the good fortune of having a horse, pamper him in the cold and the heat and give him a long, happy life with his best bud.

Today’s Horse Facts: A Contest! (and the Morgan)

April 15, 2015


Horse lovers, before reading about the Morgan, check out this contest. You could win $150!

Go to:

Tell us why you love horses for a chance to win a $150 Horse Lovers Prize Pack!

Submit a 15-30 second video (could be as simple as a video recording on your phone) of yourself telling us why you love horses.

Two random entrants will receive a Silver Prize, and one grand prize winner will receive the Gold Prize.



The Morgan

Morgan Horse

Do you know your horse facts about the Morgan breed?

The Morgan horse is very much like the Quarter Horse in that he can explode into a gallop for a short distance. The Morgan, with its short legs, muscles, and fox ears, also looks very much like the Quarter Horse. How can we tell the two breeds apart?

A Morgan is chunkier than a Quarter Horse, especially in his stout neck. His long, wavy tail often flows to the ground. His trot is quick and short and with such great stamina, he can trot all day long.

So where are the Morgan’s roots?

The horse breed was named after Justin Morgan, a frail music teacher, who lived in Vermont at the turn of the 18th Century. Instead of receiving cash for a debt owed, Mr. Morgan was given two colts. The smallest one, which he called Figure, was an undersized dark bay with a black mane and tail. Mr. Morgan sold the one colt, but he kept Figure, which he thought was a cross between a Thoroughbred and an Arabian. Over the years, he found the horse to be strong enough to pull logs and fast enough to beat Thoroughbreds in one afternoon and eager to do it all over again the same day!

When Mr. Morgan died, his short but powerful horse was called Justin Morgan in honor of his owner. After that, all of Justin Morgan’s foals were called Morgans. The first volume of the Morgan Horse Register was published in 1894. Since then, hundreds of thousands of Morgans have been registered.

If you go Morgan hunting, you will find the breed in any combination of blacks, browns, and whites. Don’t look for a tall horse because all Morgans are between 14 and 15 hands tall, just right for beginners.

If you’re fortunate enough to find a well-trained Morgan, he’ll give you years of pleasure whether you ask him to gallop down a country trail, pull a wagon, or learn to jump obstacles.

Marsha Hubler
(writers’ tips)
Author of the Keystone Stables Series

Dear Horse Facts Fans,

For several years we’ve posted all kinds of blogs about horse breeds, horse care, and horse anything. For awhile, we’re taking a break, but we have dozens and dozens of blogs in here about over 50 horse breeds with lots of nice pictures. Browse our past blogs by going to the SEARCH box on the right column. Plug in any horse breed or horsie topic and enjoy the true/false horse facts quiz. Visit some blogs where I wrote about all the horses that enriched my life over the years. And keep on riding!


Rex, my all-time favorite horse, who went over the horsie rainbow bridge a long time ago. I still miss this horse so much.

Visit my website,

There is lots of “horsie stuff” there too!

Today’s Horse Facts: Pole Bending and Barrel Racing Review

barrel racing 2


Do you know what pole bending and barrel racing are? If you read my last blog post, you do know what they are. Have you seen either at a rodeo? Can you remember what pattern riders use while barrel racing? Let’s find out in today’s true T/F quiz:

  1. Barrel racing originally developed as an event for men.
  2. Pole bending is a timed event that features a horse and one mounted rider running a weaving path around eight poles arranged in a line.
  3. It is believed that barrel racing first saw competitive light in the state of Texas.
  4. In pole bending each pole is 21 feet apart.
  5. Each pole is six feet high with a base of no more than 14 inches in diameter.
  6. Pole bending combines the horse’s athletic ability and the horsemanship skills of a rider in order to safely maneuver a horse through a cloverleaf pattern.
  7. Both boys and girls compete at the youth level in barrel racing.
  8. Pole bending is usually seen in high school rodeos.
  9. In barrel racing, the figure-eight pattern was eventually dropped in favor of the more-difficult cloverleaf.
  10. The measurements of the poles are implemented and endorsed by the National High School Rodeo Association.

pole bending 2

Let me know if you get at least 8 of these questions correct. If so, you are a pole bending and barrel racing expert! Here are the answers:

  1. F    Barrel racing originally developed as an event for women.
  2. F    Pole bending is a timed event that features a horse and one mounted rider, running a weaving path around six poles arranged in a line.
  3. T
  4. T
  5. T
  6. F    Barrel racing combines the horse’s athletic ability and the horsemanship skills of a rider in order to safely maneuver a horse through a cloverleaf pattern.
  7. T
  8. T
  9. T
  10. T


For more information about pole bending and barrel racing, check out these sites:

Happy riding!



Have you read this amazing book yet?

Book 8. Keystone Stables

The Long Ride Home

The search begins for the parents Skye never knew. But what will happen if she finds them? On a trip to South Carolina with her foster family, Skye gets the shock of her life when the waitress at a local diner seems to recognize her. The woman proves to be Skye’s long-lost Aunt Millie—Skye’s first-ever contact with her flesh-and-blood family! As Skye and Mom and Dad Chambers attempt to track down her real parents with Millie’s help. Skye’s foster sister and best friend, Morgan, struggles with her own family regrets. More is at stake than anyone can imagine—and the outcome is one that only a truly amazing God can bring about.





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