Today’s Horse Facts: The Camarillo Horse – Not a Fake!

Have you ever heard of the Camarillo horse breed? Is this a pure white horse?

The Camarillo: Not a Fake!

Whitecamarillo.JPG

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

Have you ever watched the Tournament of Roses Parade in Pasadena, California, on TV on New Year’s Day? If so, then you’ve probably oohed and aahed at every horse marching down the street. One of the breeds featured has been the Camarillo. Do you know your horse breeds well enough to recognize a Camarillo?

Besides appearing in the Rose Parade, the Carmarillo has become famous, mostly in California, for their performances in all kinds of parades and events. They have such a reputation on the West Coast that several famous people have owned or ridden them, including former President Ronald Reagan.

But what’s so unusual about the Camarillo?

Most horses classified as “white” are not true white. They’re often born with a dark coat, which turns lighter with age and looks like it might be white, but the horses are really gray because of their dark skin.

However, the Camarillo is not a fake. He’s known for his pure white color, which includes pink skin under his dazzling white coat. This amazing horse is white from birth and remains so his entire life.

The Camarillo is not only a color breed. He has other distinctive characteristics, including a refined body shape. He has beautiful large eyes, an arching neck, and strong legs.

Where did this head-turning beauty get his start?

Around 1912, a pure white Mustang colt with brown eyes came on the scene.  As he frolicked in the pasture, no one ever thought he’d become the foundation stallion for the Camarillo White Horse. Over the next 95 years, he founded a new horse breed, carried the Camarillo name, and gained a reputation as an equine legend.

So, how did all this happen?

In 1921, Adolfo Camarillo bought a dazzling white stallion (yep, the little white colt born nine years ago) named “Sultan” at the California State Fair in Sacramento. Mr. Camarillo loved the horse so much, he called him “a stallion of a dream.” He and Sultan worked as a team in many competitions and became well-known for all their victories throughout California.

Knowing he had a special white horse, Mr. Camarillo bred Sultan to Morgan mares at the Camarillo Ranch, developing a line owned only by the Camarillo family for the next 65 years. When Mr. Camarillo died in 1958, his daughter Carmen continued breeding Camarillos. She also continued to show the horses at parades and events until her death in 1987, when, at her wish, the horses were sold at public auction, ending the exclusive ownership of the breed by the Camarillo family.

In 1989, five Camarillo lovers decided to regroup the horses for public performances. But by 1991, only eleven horses remained, and the breed was in danger of dying out. Thus, the Camarillo White Horse Association began the following year.

Today, several owners continue to breed and parade the Camarillo White Horses to maintain the lineage and keep the story of the special white horse alive. (As of 2010 there were only 20 known Camarillos: three stallions, five mares, three geldings, two two-year-old colts and seven foals.)

The Camarillo White Horse has become part of an international study to determine what genes are responsible for making a truly white horse. With several populations of white horses as part of the study, it was discovered that the Camarillo White Horse carries a unique mutation of a certain gene partially responsible for the coat color found only in that breed. It can now be determined if a white horse that someone believes may be a Camarillo White Horse is truly such, or whether he’s a fake.

Exactly what is a fake?  A fake is someone who tries to make something seem real that isn’t. A fake deceives others.

Did anyone ever think you are a fake?

If I asked your friends if they think you’re a Christian, what would they say?  Would they say, “I don’t think he’s a Christian. He’s never said he is. Sometimes he doesn’t act like it either.”

If you’re a believer in Jesus, are you faking it? Are you pretending you’re not a Christian when you’re with your friends because you’re ashamed of God? Maybe you’d like to be a brave witness for the Lord Jesus Christ, but sometimes you’re not sure what to say.

The best thing to do is pray and ask God for the right words. As you read your Bible and go to church regularly, you’ll learn how to share the gospel with your friends. As you do that, they’ll soon respect you for your beliefs and will never consider you a fake at all.

PRAYER: Dear God, help me not to be a “fake” in front of my friends. I always want to be honest and be brave enough to tell them I’m a Christian and that Jesus is the Savior. In Jesus’ name, amen.

“I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone

who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.”                                  

(Romans 1:16 NIRV)

SADDLE UP!   (What would God have you do now?)

Are there any of your friends who don’t know you’re a Christian because you’ve not been honest with them? List their names here, and ask God to give you the courage to stand up for your faith in Christ. ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Take your ride: (Do you know?)  The Camarillo White Horse is the official horse of the city of Camarillo, California.

Dismount and cool down your horse! (Do you know?)  “Providing for honest things, not only in the sight of the Lord, but also in the sight of men” (2 Corinthians 8:21).

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THE KEYSTONE STABLES SERIES

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Ride with Skye and Champ in 8 exciting adventures.

 

 

 

 

The Brandenburger horse has his roots way back in the 15th Century in Brandenburg, a state in northeast Germany.

The Brandenburger: Going for the Gold!

BrandenburgerFreddy.jpg

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

“…the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than fine gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than the honey and the honeycomb. Moreover by them is the servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.”

(Psalm 19: 9b-11)

            The Brandenburger has his roots way back in the 15th Century in Brandenburg, a state in northeast Germany.  This breed developed out of the need for a good work horse in agriculture. Farmers soon discovered he had no problem thriving in Germany’s climate, whether facing hot summers or harsh winters. So for centuries, this strong horse served its owners mostly by plowing fields and pulling wagons.

In 1922, the Warmblood Breeding Society began to help align farming needs for the horse with proper breeding. Gradually, a stronger but gentle warmblood developed by crossing Hanoverian and Prussian breeds. Right after World War II, a stallion named Komet from Mecklenburg, East Germany, miraculously escaped a horrible enforced castration rule for unapproved stallions in that country. He later sired a series of successful show jumping champions. Eventually, this breed gained a reputation as a fantastic sport horse during the mid-20th Century by crossbreeding Trakehners (TRACK en ners), Hanoveranians, English Thoroughbreds, Oldenburgs, and Holsteiners.

By 1999, 1,927 broodmares and 76 sires had been registered. Germany has long been recognized for its warmblood horse breeding. This horse is a testament to that long tradition of valuable warm-blooded German horses that shine as excellent sport horses as well as farm workers.

The typical Brandenburg is about16.1 hands. He has a medium head, a well-set neck with a long and straight back, and muscled, strong legs. His common color is bay, usually with dark markings on the ankles and legs. Sometimes you might spot a white marking on his forehead, and his coat is often shiny, like a brand-new penny.

This snappy breed is a well-balanced horse with a lively temperament.  Yet, he’s easy going with the tendency to be nervous. He does well at dressage, endurance riding, general riding, and driving. As a warmblood, he’s a combination of the speed and agility of the hotbloods and the heavier build and gentlemanly manners of the coldbloods.

So what do we have today with this gorgeous Brandenburger? Remember, he started out as a lowly farm animal, pulling plows and wagons. But his determination and drive to go for the gold made him a popular breed found in all spheres of riding and driving sports as well as in dressage and show jumping. His ultimate achievement has been his arrival on the Olympic scene, where he’s won more than his share of gold medals.

How about you? Do you have goals in your life that might lead to “gold” someday? Do you know you can go for the gold right now at your age?

The Bible tells us that God’s Word is more precious than gold, and if we spend time reading it, we’ll gain wisdom and knowledge. A wise person makes decisions that bring success in his life. Who wouldn’t want to be successful in any venture he’d try? According to the Bible, those who take special heed to God’s “judgments,” or his Word, will earn great rewards.

So, when you read your Bible, remember that the wisdom you’re learning is more valuable than all the money in the world. You’ll be on the road to success in whatever you strive to do.  And you’ll on your way to winning the gold!

PRAYER: Dear God, I want to be the best at anything you ask me to do. Please give me the desire to please you. Help me to be in your Word every day so I can gain wisdom. In Jesus’ name, amen.

SADDLE UP!   (What would God have you do now?)

If you don’t have a regular time to read your Bible every day, now might be the time to decide to do that, which will help you “go for the gold.” When do you think would be the best time for you to have your daily devotional time?

Take your ride: (Do you know?)  Poetin, a Brandenburger mare and blue-ribbon dressage horse, sold for a record amount at a PSI (Performance Sales International) auction in 2003 for three-and-a-half million dollars.

Dismount and cool down your horse! (Do you know?)  “But He knows the way that I take; When He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold” (Job 23:10).

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SNOW, PHANTOM STALLION OF THE POCONOS

Dallis dreams of meeting Snow, a wild Mustang stallion, but everyone else believes the horse is just a figment of her imagination!

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Today’s Horse Facts: The Azerbaijan

Have you ever heard of an Azerbaijan (AZ-ər-by-JAHN)? Not many people have. In fact, if you’d ask the average person, he might say he thinks an Azerbaijan is a type of insect or some disease!

The Azerbaijan: A Burden Lifter

Qarabaq ati.jpg

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

“Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.”

(Galatians 6:2)

Have you ever heard of an Azerbaijan (AZ-ər-by-JAHN)? Not many people have. In fact, if you’d ask the average person, he might say he thinks an Azerbaijan is a type of insect or some disease!

The Azerbaijan horse, (once called a Kazakh), is as unknown as the country of Azerbaijan itself. This small republic lies just northwest of Iran in Asia. Although Azerbaijan is small, its people have great respect and pride for a powerful little horse that owes his roots to that part of the world. The little-known breed is a mountain-steppe racing and riding horse. These tough horses are known for living long lives and having great endurance. They do very well growing up in herds on mountainsides, and they’re strong with lots of spunk.

If you’d like to look at a handsome horse, the Azerbaijan will fit the bill. He usually comes in the solid colors of chestnut, bay, or gray.  He has a short head with a broad forehead and narrow nose, a really thick neck, and a strong body, and he runs fast with a pacing (rather fast steady) gait. He runs so fast the Azerbaijan folks often hold races. This little equine powder keg has been clocked at almost a mile in about three minutes!

Azerbaijans are also known for strength and stamina, working as pack horses to lighten heavy loads for the people who love them so much. The breed has unique characteristics that have made him a reliable burden bearer. Although he’s only about 11 to 12 hands, he can carry heavy loads on mountain trails and over the countryside with no problem. While carrying all that weight, he can go about 25 to 30 miles in one day!

Wow! The Azerbaijan certainly has the reputation of being a burden lifter. How about you? Do you help others and lift their burdens?

You might think, how can I lift burdens and heavy things? I’m just a kid.

Do you know the Bible teaches us to be burden lifters to our family and friends? Lifting burdens doesn’t always mean picking up heavy things as you would do to help someone move into a new house or maybe just to clean out a garage. When you’re a burden lifter, you’re an encourager. You’re someone who says kind words and does kind deeds to make others feel better.  To do this, you should be alert to your family’s and friends’ needs.

If someone is disappointed about something, do you ever offer kind words? Do you listen if your friend wants to tell you his troubles? These are ways even children can be burden lifters like the perky Azerbaijan.

Perhaps you don’t think about how others are feeling because you think about yourself too much. Or maybe you have too many of your own problems. Well, the Bible tells us that we’re to give our worries to the Lord Jesus, and He’ll help us. When we pray, ask for His strength, and give our burdens to Him, He’s ready to take them. God then gives us strength so we’re ready and able to lift burdens for those we love.

PRAYER: Dear God, help me to not focus on myself all the time. Help me to be sensitive to the burdens of others, so I can offer to help. In Jesus’ name, amen.

SADDLE UP!   (What would God have you do now?)

Think of some family or friends who have burdens and how you can offer to help.

Take your ride: (Do you know?) The Azerbaijan has a peculiar lengthwise fold on his tongue, making it look like a forked (divided) tongue.

Dismount and cool down your horse! (Do you know?) “Come to me, all you that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).



BOOK FIVE: BLUE RIBBON CHAMP

Foster kid Skye has her hands full, trying to help Down syndrome Joey learn to ride. Joey adores Skye, but she can’t stand him.

How’s a Christian gal to treat someone she doesn’t like?

         Blue Ribbon Champ

http://amzn.to/2BennQy

 

Today’s Horse Facts: The Andalusian – Fit for a King

The Andalusian horse has always been known for its incredible athletic ability as a war horse. But how is he used today?

The Andalusian: Fit for a King

Image result for andalusian horse

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

The Andalusian horse is a real beauty, standing between 15 and 16.2 hands. This breed is most often gray or bay (a shade of brown with a black mane, black tail, and often black legs below the knee) in color, but once in a while you might see a white, black, or chestnut Andalusian prancing by. He’s well built with a finely sculptured head, alert ears, lively yet kind eyes, an elegant arched neck, and a long and often wavy mane and tail. This horse descended from the horses of Spain and Portugal and derives its name from Andalusia, a region in southern Spain, where its ancestors lived for thousands of years. He’s also known as the Pure Spanish Horse or P.R.E. (Pura Raza Española).

This magnificent breed has been recognized since the 15th Century, and its conformation has changed very little over the centuries. From the very beginning, Andalusians have been used for both riding and driving. Among the first horses used for dressage, they’re still making a mark in that international competition today.

The Andalusian has always been known for its incredible athletic ability as a war horse.   The Quarter Horse and other breeds noted for their “cow sense” inherited this ability from their Andalusian ancestors. (Horses with “cow sense” are good at anticipating the next move of cattle they are trying to corner or single out of a herd, particularly to cutting horses. They seem to understand cattle and can almost read their minds.)

Also, bull owners gave the Andalusian its reputation as the greatest athlete and stock-working animal in the equine world. In Spain, cowboys have long used them in handling the bulls, which can be quite ornery. Many other horse breeds run the opposite direction from these dangerous animals; yet, Andalusians seem to delight in confronting a nasty bull. With the incredible speed, they can maneuver stealthily, dodging in and out and barely missing the hooking horns when the bull charges.

Andalusian blood has had a strong influence on almost every breed in ancient times. But most interesting is the fact that Andalusians became a favorite for kings and knights, mostly because of the horse’s regal carriage and high step. Although the Andalusian has always been very expensive, a wealthy knight would never be found plodding along on a lazy, low-headed mount. The prancing Andalusian had to have an arched neck to be chosen to carry royalty.

It’s no surprise this horse is nicknamed “The Horse of Kings.” The breed was so respected, a quote spoken over 300 years ago by William Cavendish, Duke of Newcastle, has also stood the tests of time: “… the noblest horse in the world, the most beautiful that can be. He is of great spirit and of great courage and docile; hath the proudest trot and the best action in his trot, the loftiest gallop, and is the lovingest and gentlest horse, and fittest of all for a king in his day of triumph.” [1] The Andalusian truly is a horse fit for a king!

How about you? Are you fit for a king?

“Fit for a king?” you might say. “I’ve never even met a king or a president. How can I be fit for a king?”

I’m talking about the King of kings and Lord of lords, the Lord Jesus Christ. Are you “fit” for that King?

The Bible says when we accept Jesus as our Savior, He becomes the “King” of our lives. Subjects who love their king (or leader) try to please him with their good deeds and loyalty. If you’re a young Christian, your desire should be to please God with everything you do and say.

Are you sure that activity you want to do will please God? The best way to serve your King is to read His word, go to church, and pray. When you pray, ask God for His guidance, and He’ll help you every day.

 “Listen to my cry for help, my King and my God, for to you I pray.”

(Psalm 5:2 NIV)

PRAYER: Dear God, I want to please you and honor you as my King. Help me to always remember I serve the King of kings and Lord of lords and that I want to be a faithful follower of you. Thank you. In Jesus’ name, amen.

SADDLE UP!   (What would God have you do now?)

Write three things you could do that would show Jesus that He’s the King of your life. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Take your ride: (Do you know?) The Iberian and Celtiberian soldiers of the famous Carthaginian horse troops used magnificent Andalusians to carry the Roman army in its conquests throughout the ancient world.

Dismount and cool down your horse! (Do you know?) “Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen” (1 Timothy 1: 17).

1 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andalusian_horse

 

Today’s Horse Facts: The American Saddlebred – Pround as a Peacock!

The American Saddlebred is called the “peacock of the horse world.”

The American Saddlebred – Proud as a Peacock!

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

 If you want a flashy, high-stepping show horse and you have the money to buy one, then you want an American Saddlebred, also known as the Saddle Horse or Kentucky Saddler.  This horse has class!

By now, you’ve probably figured that the word “American” tagged to a horse’s official name means the horse had its origins in the United States. Such is true of the American Saddlebred. For a long time in its history, this breed was referred to as “the horse America made.” Starting with riding horses during the American Revolution, this breed has roots with the Morgan, Narragansett Pacer, Canadian Pacer, and Thoroughbred.

Throughout the 20th Century, the breed became popular in the United States, and since the formation of the US registry in 1891, almost 250,000 American Saddlebreds have been registered. Today the Saddlebred can be found in countries all around the world, and breed registries exist in Great Britain, Australia, Europe, and southern Africa.

The Saddlebred is a “taller” slim horse, averaging 15 to 16 hands (60 to 64 inches) in height. When this spunky equine prances into the show ring, he oozes a sense of presence and style. Although the Saddlebreds are very spirited, the breed is known for its gentle temperament. They may be of any color, including pinto patterns accepted since the late 1800s.

Something quite different about the Saddlebred is that’s it’s a “gaited” breed. Does that mean they have to be kept in fences with strong gates? Not so.

A “gait” is a step. Saddlebreds show in three-gaited or five-gaited classes, depending on the different speeds or steps each horse has. Saddlebreds are mainly known for their performance in the show ring, but they can enter hunter and driving classes, as well as just being a fantastic pleasure riding horse.

If you ever own an American Saddlebred, you might want to show him in one of five divisions: Five-Gaited, Three-Gaited, Fine Harness, Park, and Pleasure. In those divisions they are judged on performance, presence, quality, and conformation. But one thing is for sure. Whatever gait the horse is performing, he’s high-stepping it. No wonder he’s now called “the Peacock of the Horse World.”

Have you ever felt proud as a peacock about anything you’ve done or anything you might own? Do you brag about new stuff your parents buy you? Maybe you think your house is better than all your friends’ houses. Maybe you look in the mirror and think you’re the best-looking kid on the block.

“Is that a bad attitude?” you might ask.

The Bible says quite a bit about being proud of the wrong things. If you’re proud, thinking you’ve done something great or because of something you own or the way you look, God wants us to know that’s the wrong pride. He wants us to develop a humble, or respectful, attitude toward others, especially toward Him. A respectful person puts others first in his life and looks to serve them.

But I’m proud to be a Christian, you might be thinking. Is that wrong?

If you’re proud to be a Christian, it’s a good thing as long as you don’t gloat. To gloat means to feel smug or better than someone else. It’s important to let others know you are a Christian, but when you act like you’re better than others, they probablywon’t be interested when you want to tell them about Jesus. It’s much better to develop a sweet, helping attitude that others will love about you. Then they might want to know why you’re so different, and you can tell them all about your wonderful Savior.

“…God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.”

(James 4:6b)

PRAYER: Dear God, help me not to brag or be proud of the wrong things. Help me to have a humble, helpful attitude. Thank you. In Jesus’ name, amen.

SADDLE UP!   (What would God have you do now?)

Can you think of any time you might have had the wrong kind of pride about something?  Ask God to forgive you and help you develop a humble attitude.

 

Take your ride: (Do you know?) 

Saddlebred horses that have won a lot of shows can cost $30,000 or more.

Dismount and cool down your horse! (Do you know?)

“When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom” (Proverbs 11:2).

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A HORSE TO LOVE

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Foster kid Skye hates everyone and everything until she meets Champ, a gorgeous show horse, and she comes to live at Keystone Stables, a foster home and special needs riding academy.

Today’s Horse Facts: The Abtenauer

Do you know what an Abtenauer is? Check out my blog post today.

Abtenauer: Small But Mighty

abtenauer

(Photo compliments of Wikipedia)

If you’re a horse lover and live in the country of Austria, then you probably know what an Abtenauer horse is. An Abtenauer is a small stocky horse many folks think is just a pony. That’s because the breed’s average height is only 14 to 15 hands. (A “hand” measures about four inches.) This cute lineage breed comes from a special place in Austria, an isolated valley called the Abtenauer, tucked away in the beautiful Alps Mountains not far from Salzburg.
Abtenauers, known as “draft horses,” are extremely strong for their size, but they have a sweet temperament and enjoy working with humans. Therefore, their labor mostly involves pulling wagons like buckboards loaded with people or harvested crops. Some Abtenauers also work in the forest, pulling huge tree trunks for loggers.
An interesting fact is the foals are born with curly hair and are black, blue roan, brown, or chestnut. But when the foals shed their first coat, the curls disappear, and they have straight hair from then on.
Because this little breed is confined to such a small part of the world, their number has become low, maybe as few as a hundred or so. Yet, in the Abtenauer Valley, they are quite popular and are celebrated for their stamina.
How can such a small horse have such strength to pull a wagon full of people or heavy bags of grain? If you ask me, that takes a lot of determination!
God has given the Abtenauer an elegant build with a well-shaped head and strong legs full of muscle, which allow this little horse to power up and trot with an easy flow. He truly is mighty, not only for his conformation but for his “I can do this” attitude!
Do you ever feel badly because you’re body is small or you feel “small” with the way you struggle with your studies? Maybe you’re the tiniest one in your family or in your circle of friends. Does that mean you can’t do the same things other kids do or get good grades? Do you ever say, “I can’t do that. I’m too little?” Do you ever think it?
God tells us in His Bible the size of a person doesn’t matter to Him. In fact, God has made you the way you are. Of course, if you’re short, you’re not going to be able to win at basketball or a high jump event, but God has other plans for you. Whether you’re short or thin, God loves you, and you can be mighty in whatever tasks He asks you to do.
Are you too short to help your mother dust the furniture or dry the dishes? Are you too short to get an A in that math test? Are you too short to tell someone “I love you?” I think the answer should be “I can do this!”
In Luke chapter 19, the Bible tells us of a man named Zacchaeus, who wanted to meet Jesus. Zacchaeus was so short, he couldn’t see over the crowd. But he didn’t whimper like a lost puppy and go home. Instead, he said, “I can do this!” He climbed the nearest tree, met Jesus, and became a mighty witness for God. Zacchaeus didn’t use his puny height as an excuse not to serve God.
How about you? Whether you’re small in stature or maybe you feel small inside, you can be mighty for God. Take a step of faith and see if God gives you strength you never knew you had to do the job He’s asked you to do. There’s no better time than right now to make up your mind to be a mighty warrior for God. Ask Him to help you to always have an “I can do it” attitude, and you’ll be amazed at all you’ll achieve for the Lord Jesus Christ.
You might be small, but you can still be mighty!

“For the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds” (2 Corinthians 10:4).

PRAYER: Dear God, Sometimes I feel so small and weak. I pray you will help me have an “I can do this” attitude for anything you ask me to do. I am willing. Please make me mighty with your power. Thank you. In Jesus’ name, amen.
SADDLE UP! (What would God have you do now?)
To learn more about our wonderful God, try to read your Bible every day. You could ask for a children’s Bible to help you understand it better.
Start reading in the book of John in the New Testament. Write a verse from the book of John that you really like.

Take your ride: (Do you know?) When the Abtenauers aren’t working, they’re grazing, sometimes with cows, in lush pastures embedded in the beautiful Abtenauer Valley.

Dismount and cool down your horse: (Do you know?) “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philippians 4:13).

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Have you read any of my Keystone Stables books? How about starting with book one:

A HORSE TO LOVE

Foster kid Skye Nicholson hates everyone until she meets a blue ribbon show horse, Champ.

keystone-stables-book-1

Today’s Horse Facts: Lady, My Third Horse

My second horse, Lady, wasn’t a lady at all. Find out why.

Today’s Horse Facts

Lady: My Second or Third Horse?????

Lady, My Second Horse

You probably won’t understand what I’m about to say if you are young, but when you get “older,” your memory can start to fail you. Duh! Everyone knows that. Anyway, the horse that I thought was my third horse turned out to be my second horse.

Like a dummy, I never marked the dates or the horses’ names on the back of the zillions of pictures I took of all my horses. So I’ve been plowing through all my albums, trying to sort out which horse was who and when I owned each. But I know that the horse in this picture is Lady, who was my second horse.

How do I know? Well, the picture shows a friend riding Lady, a bay grade mare.

Lady with Moon Doggie in 1971

Next to them is my husband Richard riding Moon Doggie, my first horse. So, that proved to me that Lady was my second horse. And Ginger, whom I thought was my second horse, was really my third horse. Now, are you totally confused? And, by the way, does it really matter?
Now, here’s a little bit of info about Lady, who by the way wasn’t a lady in any shape or form. She was an older horse, and you can tell by looking at her ribs sticking out in the one photo (even though I fed her tons of food). By buying an older horse, I thought I was getting a gentle down-to-earth easy rider. Well, Lady was that—kind of. As long as we rode her AWAY from the barn, she was a piece of cake.

However, as soon as we turned her around to head for the barn, look out! We needed a tight rein on her, and we never could run her going home. That little gem of info we found out the hard way.

One Saturday, hubby and I went for a short ride, maybe for an hour. I rode Moon Doggie, and hubby was on Lady. On the way home, we started to lope across a farmer’s field. We were probably a quarter of a mile from our barn.

All of a sudden, Lady took off full speed ahead and hubby couldn’t stop her. All I could see was a brown blur and him yelling, “Whoa, whoa” and yanking on the reins as hard as he could.

Do you know what we found out?

Lady had a hard mouth. You don’t want a horse with a hard mouth.

What’s a hard mouth? All the nerves in her mouth had been so damaged from bits over the years, her mouth had become totally numb to any pressure or pain. When she decided to run, she was unstoppable. What she should have had on her was a hackamore. Of course, I was still learning about horses, so I didn’t know that.

Unfortunately, Lady was so old, I think I finally sold her to the meat market, sad to say. But I’m not really sure of that. All I remember is that she was very old, and she was no fun to ride back to the barn. But, I will hand this to her. She taught me an awful lot about older, hard-mouthed horses. The next time I went horse buying, I made sure the horse behaved going away and back to the barn.

Happy riding!

Marsha

http://www.marshahubler.com

P.S. Email me with stories and pictures of your horses.

(Christmas is coming! Buy a horse book for a friend!)

THE KEYSTONE STABLES SERIES

keystone-stables-composite

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON and ANY LOCAL BOOKSTORE

(IF THE BOOK STORES DON’T HAVE THEM, THEY CAN ORDER THEM.)

 Learn about my Keystone Stables books at http://www.marshahubler.com

BOOK ONE: A HORSE TO LOVE

keystone-stables-book-1

Read about foster kid, Skye Nicholson, and her show horse, Champ, and all their exciting adventures.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B002U80FZK/ref=series_rw_dp_sw