I recently was surfing the net to see if anyone else had come up with some suggestions for their grumpy, girthy horses. I came across this excellent article http://www.succeed-equine.com/succeed-blog/2010/12/13/top-3-reasons-your-horse-is-girthy-and-what-to-do-about-it/ and wanted to share. Below is an excerpt...
Here are the top three reasons horses develop girthiness. With the help of your vet and a knowledgeable trainer, you can use the process of elimination to determine which issue is causing your horse to be girthy – the first step in fixing it.
Your Horse May Be Girthy Because His Tack Doesn’t Fit
...The hindgut in particular is massive, filling up the greater portion of the belly. It extends the length of your horse’s underside all the way up into the girth area.
Girthiness Caused By A Previous Trauma
Horses have long memories, especially when there is pain involved. If you horse was mishandled or experienced an injury at any point in his life, his adverse reaction to the girth may be an ongoing result. Here are some types of trauma that may be causing your horse to act girthy.
I also realized, we have a few good tricks of our own to add:
Halloween is coming fast - and with it lots of treats! We know you love to treat your horses so do we! So in honor of more treats - less tricks - or maybe more treats in exchange for your horse learning some new tricks here is our top 10 Treat Favorites (for the horses) :
1. Starlight Peppermints
4. Orange Pop
6. Cracklin Oat Bran Cereal
9. Warm Bran Mash
10. Sugar Cubes
Is it safe to feed? Here is a fairly comprehensive list borrowed from www.myhorse.com of some dos and don'ts when it comes to treats:
Horse owners often ask equine nutritionist Dr. Juliet Getty about the safety of offering common—and sometimes not so common—foods as treats. Carrots have naturally come up in discussion, but also French fries, garlic bread, and even chocolate. What’s safe and what’s not, and under what circumstances, may surprise anyone who has ever extended a chunk of apple to an eager horse.
Dr. Getty points out that some treats are generally safe, some treats are sometimes safe, and some are never, ever good for horses. As she points out, “Horses trust humans for their care. Choose wisely.”
Safe to feed, generally:
Chocolate. Like dogs, horses are sensitive to the toxic chemical theobromine found in chocolate.
Milk and milk products: Do not feed ice cream, cheese, and even yogurt. Grown horses are lactose intolerant. As Dr. Getty cautions, “Your horse will get diarrhea, and,” she adds with a twinkle, “he will not like you.”
Other potentially toxic fruits and vegetables include:
For Horses with Sugar Issues, Avoid these:
No matter where your travels take you and your horse - We wish you all the success! Ride well and safely. We are headed to Tulsa, OK this week and couldn't be more excited to see our friends from across the country and not to mention all the great Horses and classes.
Best of Luck to all exhibitors - remember you never LOSE, You either WIN or LEARN !
it seems nowadays nearly everyone has been touched in some way by breast cancer. Having lost my mother to this obnoxious disease in 1993, and recently one of my best friends was diagnosed just after her 50th birthday party - compelled me to write this simple reminder that all women should regularly be checked.
If you have a history in your family talk to your doctor now about what your options are for screening - don't wait. I personally went through the genetic screening to determine my probability of ending up with breast cancer. For me it didn't indicate much more than what I already knew before the screening: I am at a higher risk because I have direct family members (mother & maternal grandmother) who have had the disease. Screening is a very personal choice, but screening and finding something early could make all the difference for your long-term survival. Cancer has a stealth way of taking over your life. You don't know it's there unless you detect it through proper screening.
I was very thankful that my mom found her cancer the first time early on. She received treatment and was cancer free for an entire year - I cherish the extra year we had with her.
Although my friend is still battling, her prognosis is good. She had surgery last week and the surgeon's feel confident that they have removed what they can and possibly even all of her disease. Please do more than just think Pink - do something, get screened, get the facts.
Check out these factoids by Cowgirls United by Pink :
Visit my friends at Lope for Hope - https://www.pinterest.com/lopeforhope/
I've been a trainer and an instructor, taken instruction from some of the finest professionals the horse industry has, qualified and shown at the National levels and spent many a late hour observing other trainers working their horses. The thing that continues to amaze me is that there are so many different methods, as many as there are trainers themselves, and gadgets or attachments designed by lots of very clever humans, and those things seem to work for at least some of the people who use them - and I have been those people. Yet this week, after 40+ years, it finally dawns on me..I mean really hits me: You don't need fancy training techniques or attachments, special halters or leads -sure those tools can be used and may provide some assistance to get the job done - but what it really boils down to good ole' common HORSE sense.
Horses are herd animals with a natural order. There is a leader and then there are followers. We know this as the Alpha Male or Alpha Female. Other pack or herd animals have similar hierarchies. These hierarchies are designed by nature to keep the herd or pack safe and establish a natural chain of command to help maintain organization and clear lines of communication. In the unnatural world that we have created for our horses, perhaps we forget how powerful these lines of communication are and that we fit into this natural order just like the rest of the 'herd'. We have all seen what happens to the horses at the bottom of the pecking order, and we certainly have observed the Alpha behaviors in the herd leaders. But have we really determined where each of us fit in our horse's chain of command? Until we become the leader, there is a kink in the chain and the ambiguity of communication manifests in all sorts of 'behavioral' problems or 'poor bloodlines', and other excuses we as riders and trainers come up with to explain our horse issues or our lack of patience.
In a recent lesson with author and trainer, Nelly Cooper, who wrote a book called The Alpha Equestrian Challenge, I was not only impressed with the simplicity of her method, but the immediate effectiveness of her common horse sense approach. I would strongly recommend picking up Nelly's book - it gives the reader some very practical advise on working with your horse. Simple little things can make all the difference. So here is to simplicity!