Thought 4the day: Its not all about riding... just lately we have advertised for volunteers and when anyone rings the first question they ask is do we get to ride? One person was not interested in anything else but riding and bringing horses on. As i have explained to each that have asked we are a sanctuary and when they come in it can be 6 months to a year before they can be ridden again dependin...g on their speed of recovery. Some are only babies. Others retired through ill health etc. When and if one becomes ready and is rideable a home is found on the waiting list and they will leave as soon as they can to start their new life. Its not all about riding its about being there and watching them grow and flourish and about helping them along that way in whatever way possible. There are not many of us here. I do 4 mornings a week on my own and on 3 mornings Pauline is there. Evenings is both of us. Sue comes down once or twice a week and will lend a hand. My daughters help on weekends and we have a few teenagers that come at weekends too. We have the odd sparadic volunteer. As long as the horses have us they have all they need.
Fact 4the day: Cutting is an equestrian event in the western riding style where a horse and rider are judged on their ability to separate a single animal away from a cattle herd and keep it away for a short period of time.
A cutting horse is an athletic and willing animal possessing an innate "cow sense" and ability to respond quickly and turn sharply that is trained to keep a cow fro...m returning to the herd. The horses involved are typically American Quarter Horses, although many other stock horse breeds are also used.
In the event, the horse and rider select and separate a cow (typically a steer or heifer) out of a small group. The cow then tries to return to its herd; the rider loosens the reins ("puts his hand down" in the parlance) and leaves it entirely to the horse to keep the cow separated, a job the best horses do with relish, savvy, and style. A contestant has 2 ½ minutes to show the horse; typically three cows are cut during a run, although working only two cows is acceptable. A judge awards points to the cutter based on a scale that ranges from 60 to 80, with 70 being considered average.
The sport originated from cattle ranches in the American West, where it was the cutting horse's job to separate cattle from the herd for vaccinating, castrating, and sorting. Eventually competitions arose between the best cutting horses and riders in the area. In 1898 the first cutting horse competition was held in Haskell, Texas. With the growth of such cutting horse contests, a group of owners decided to form an organization to establish a universal set of rules and regulations. As a result, in 1946 the National Cutting Horse Association was founded.
Today, cutting is a fast-growing equine sport. In 2006, the contestants at the United States NCHA Futurity competed for more than $3.7 million—over a hundred times the offering of the first year. Total purses at NCHA-approved shows alone now exceed $39 million annually. Additional prize money is distributed at Australian Cutting Horse Association, American Cutting Horse Association, single-breed shows, European and Canadian events.
As the cow turns, the horse is to draw back over its hocks and then turn with the cow. The rider is centered over the horse keeps his or her eyes focused on the cow’s neck so as to anticipate the cow’s next move. The horse’s shoulders during a run are parallel with that of the cow’s. The team is judged on how the horse moves in relation to the cow. Leg aids may be used to steady a horse and keep them from falling in on the cow throughout a run.
Quote 4the day: Rain or shine our 4 legged friends need us rain or shine we need them..