Post Office Box Victor Harbor
This is where you can have your say. You can have a 'Rave On' I'll select articles that can be hard hitting but not slanderous or identifying anyone.
19th June, 2011
THE OVER ABUNDANCE OF HORSES IN AUSTRALIA
The Neglect is rampant, the over Breeding is too and basically the Industry is out of control. It is out of control during a revolutionary time that will be fashioned by Social Networking.
The advent of the Internet has given every one a say and what is reported is a complete lack of uniformity across the organization of the Horse Industry, something that I can predict will eventually bit it right on the Ass.
We already see the Jumps Racing in the sights of the Liberationists, now Whips in Racing and there is even a petition on the Net to ban Dressage. Meanwhile, the Industry in it's fragmented form lurches onward with no Captain. As I have asked for Years now, "Who's looking after the Horses?"
So who should be? The Australian Horse Council, the EA or a Body like Horsesa? One thing for sure, none of them are and such an Organization that encompasses all is urgently needed so as to beat the 'Tree Huggers' to the punch and to protect the Industry, as well of course to ensure the Health and Welfare of our Horses that are in such urgent need.
We shall see. Will it ever happen? or will the Govt Public Servants and 'Faceless Men" suddenly write Laws that will be to the detriment of all? Do nothing and this is the fate of the Industry.
13th March, 2011
THE SPORT OF HACKING
The Sights and Sounds at Gainsborough are ever changing and you never know what you may see next but I have to admit that this one saddened most who were present on the property yesterday. What oh what do you do? It was 20 Degrees and Humid, the Humans Strappers were dressed for the Weather but not the Horses. They were prepared for a big Hack Show today and had been prepared. Completed with 3 Rugs, a Skinny Hood and another Hood :(
Now I can hear the Hackies Poo Hoo me and completely not understand what my position is. Here he goes again with his biased views. I will be a Villain and they are doing what they think is natural. When you move in Circles of Humans that all do the same thing and have a culture unilateral behaviour, they cannot have any understanding of what they are inflicting upon their precious Horses. They just cannot have for why would so many People inflict pain upon those that they profess to Love?
Uncle Pat says that 'Normal' is what everyone else does around you and normal changes every 100k across the World, dependant upon what everyone is doing at the time in that area. This is true of course, but normal in this Sport extends right across the Land we live in. There were a couple of British Ladies there at the time and I asked them whether this was the norm in the Land where the Sport came from. They assured me it wasn't so how come?
Imho, this is a Human sickness of the mind. They know not what they do. A sickness that sees Racking and the pouring of Caustic Soda and other things on their Pasterns, a Western Sports Fashion where Horses are being Bred like Porka Pigs and much more. The Humans involved know not what they do because everyone does it. So they think feeding arsenic to Hacks is normal, chronic over rugging is normal, lunging Horses for 7 Hours over Night in shift work because the Humans inviolved can't sustain what the Horse must, putting Horses under Lights like Battery Hens is normal, having thick hot Boots around Tendons 24/7 is normal and Drugging to the Max is normal.
It is a Sad World Folks and your personal beliefs often get compromised for how many People are you going to upset in the defence of Horses? The one thing I know is this. Just like the Sport of Jumps Racing and now Flat Racing with whips, this Sport of Saddle Horse is going to come under the microscope sooner rather than later. When that happens, they will only have themselves to blame.
THE CROOKS IN THE HORSE INDUSTRY
I was discussing the other Night, about the crookedness that goes on in all of the sides of the Horse Industry and how not only in this Industry but in Society in general, the Crooks are getting on top of the people who retain morals. Take Ben Cousins for instance. Well not for me.
Society has turned around to where the Victim runs and hides and the thugs walk around as if nothing has happened. In the Horse Industry, I continually see those who are ripped off by Criminals...yes Fraud is Criminal, cop it sweet and keep their silence apart from complaining bitterly about the matter amongst their close Friends. There is this increasing fashion that when a 'Name' in the Industry sells you a crooked Horse that you don't dare complain, you just bend over and cop it sweet, because you think you are not going to progress in that discipline of the Sport because the influence of the 'name' will get you beat and stop your dream.
The reason why those up and coming think that is because in today's Jungle, such is true but it is only allowed to be true and perpetuated, by latent but hidden percentage of those at the top who go along with such activities as they too are Crooks. I could recite cases that would make your Hair Curl and keep your Face Books melting down for weeks.
It is the weakness of the aggrieved though, that ensure such despicable behaviour will remain alive and well with Victims hiding behind their walls of silence and the bare faced Crooks walking around bigger than ever and as large as life itself because they become more financially powerful and can afford better Trucks, better Horses, more expensive Stallions and so on. Al very impressionable to the next crop of Christians that are entering the Industry at the time.
And so it was that today, the Lady who was complaining about just that sort of behaviour, that prompted my piece the other Night, cancelled her Daughters Lesson with Mrs. HP for this Thursday. So be it, no skin off our nose but thereby completely proving my point. Incidentally, Mrs. HP was the only one that had the decency and the Guts to get her money back but that one will be lost in the process.
Do these Victims think these Sellers of known Crooked Horses are the Mafia, that are going to put a contract out on them, fire bomb their Houses and the like? I don't think so but what is it? What is the intimidation that allows People to freely empty the Bank Accounts of innocent People and put their Daughters at grave risk of death or a wheel chair? This is not a Game, this is Hell serious.
So what is the intimidation that allows this to go free? It can only then be Peer pressure or the love of a piece of felt and if that is the case, the shallowness of Industry maybe so that they all deserve each other. That may be fact because I note that these Horses go around and around and the Victims sell them and sell them and sell them, just as readily as the original Crook.
So some of the custodians of the Sport that they got their name within, will glide right along, raiding peoples Credit Cards and Bank Accounts just like common Criminals and putting young Kids on Buck Jumping Horses, risking their lives and with Mothers being kicked. Until the Victims grow some Balls, it will be same old and the Families Bread Winners who slave to earn a dollar and support the dreams of their Kids will continue to pay in silence. It is a shame that this Lady chooses to side with the Crooks :(
25th June, 2008
I love this site. I read it
daily looking for any tidbits that may assist me. However it is very
tiresome reading the multitude of letters that criticize pony club and
or EFA. They are not perfect by any means, but then who can claim that
they are. We are all reading this web site and searching for other
sources of information because we do love our horses and therefore want
to improve our knowledge. My daughter takes her pony to pony club and
loves it. Sometimes she is told to do things that I donít agree with so
I have told her to say thank you politely and then ignore it. If I see
anything I donít agree with I tell the person concerned then and there.
What they do with that is up to them.
18th July, 2007
I also agree with your ranting page- the lack of basic
30th July, 2003
This week my beef is Horse Committee members/ administrators. Not Pony Club but, here is our State it is the E.F.A.and the Eventing committees that seem to attract FAILED/INCOMPETENT RIDERS / OR THOSE WHO NEVER ACTUALLY SAT ON A HORSE people to their ranks. These people have plenty of time to be on these committees, because they actually don't have any animals to feed and look after and compete on, in between working and looking after family members etc. These type of people love the POWER they wield( so they think!!) and give the rest of poor buggers who are trying to have ago the shits.
When interstate trips( junkets- fully paid for by the members of course) they flit around the country hobnobbing, while the members are left to face the ever increasing cost of membership and entry fees as the clubs never have enough money!!!
Going for a ride to the beach or through the bush instead of competing is looking more and more attractive every day ( we do this any way) and we wouldn't have to pay several lots of insurance as we do now!!!
Cathy from Tasmania
My family is involved in the rodeo world and I cant agree with you more, when you talk about pony clubbers and the rest of the "gentleman " horse sports. I see some disturbing things "behind the scenes" at rodeo but the majority of competitors are true horse people with a deep love and respect for their fellow equine friends. I find it sad when people talk about "cowboys" it nearly always means something derogatory and while sometimes it is true it is not always the case. The same goes for pony clubbers, people tend to think they are great, but sadly a lot of them aren't. They are exactly what you write, either looking for prestige or just have no idea. Keep up the good work
THE CRUELTY TO OUR STANDARD BRED HORSES
29th September, 2003
I am just writing to you to say thank you for saying something about the cruelty caused to standard reds. I used to work in the industry. I have seen many a horse treated very poorly buy trainers. One horse I saw sweating and trembling in it's stable (you know the ones they have for SB at the races) and the owner calling it a Sl*t and B***H etc. he wondered why the horse ran like a dog, she left everything at the stable poor thing made me sick.
another time I saw a certain man training a yearling. it had a head check ( a necessity for a young sb) a harsh bit cant remember exactly what it was, a complete waste of time, poor thing) spreaders of course a young horse might hit they are growing, why not knee boots and tendon boots) and an underhead check (poor thing couldn't move it's head at all) this young horse ran a really nice time once (he had a lot of potential) much to his own demise, as the man who owned him the spent the next three months working him everyday, for at least 30-40 mins in hopples and pace working to try and get that speed again he never gave it as in the beginning he was growing, and was out of balance etc, in the end he was just plain exhautsted). He used to pull the horse up and try to make him stand for 5mins or so, he was a yearling and he just didn't have the patience for it(derr does a 12 yr old child stand still) he would move, man would fight, and oneday the horse reared over. The man tried to kick the horse etc to get it to get up, but of course he had both his head checks on, that is the one and only time I have seen someone have a go at him, someone abused him and told him that the horse can't get up as the head checks restrict his head to much, he undid the head checks and the horse got straight up.
I used to go down the track with my trainer and if that man was there with his young horse, he would always say come on time to leave, it would break my heart to see this little young horse go out on the track exusted before it had even begun.
one day we went down and i noticed that the little horse wans't in it's stable, made an off hand comment to my trainer that the gentle man must have finally woke up to his self and but the horse to pasture (where it belinged, the horse only need to be broken, driven, taught to pace and sent out again asap and he was a gangly looking thing that was never going to make a 2yr old) my trainer told me no, apparently the day before it had got it's head caught in the rails of his yard and snapped his neck.
I think the saddest thing is that I ended up thinking to my self, that the horse was so much better off, it made me sick to think how glad I was that the little feller was dead.
*sigh* if only people would realise SB for the gems they are, I have never meet horses with bigger hearts. My mother made me realise that everyone genuinely thought I had a good hand with SBs on the ground and on the track, what they didn't realise was that I cared about them, treated them as well as I could and I guess they respected me for that, as I never had a problem with them, of the 25 r 30 horses that came throught the stables I worked at in the 6yrs i worked there ( it was a small one, mostly their own) there was only one horse i couldn't drive (it would pull it's self down, he had some serious problems that I think he would never have recovered from enough to race, we only had him for a little while as he was to dangerous and we couldn't get any weight on him).
well I am sure I am boring you. to get to the point, thanks for standing up for my fav breed even if it was only in your Day in the life, and only reaches a few people. I wish I had of had the guts to stand up for that yearling, I should have rung the RSPCA, but I was scared to I was only 14, but I know now and would not hesitate in a heart beat. If only some of the adults had of had the heart.
Just caught up with
your comments on the treatment of Standardbreds. I have owned a OTT STB
for the last 5 months and am a total convert to the breed. Luckily for her
she was bred and trained by a local horseman who is very well respected in
our area for his years of experience and his calm kind way with horses. As
a consequence I have a beautifully mannered, honest horse with loads of
horsy personality - found my partner for life! (brag picture below) It
hurts to think about the thousands of this gorgeous breed that end up at
abattoirs each year - an unbelievable heartbreaking waste.
I'd like to add my opinion to the issue with Standardbreds...
Firstly, they are not the only horses which get the rough end of the deal. It happens. I wish it didn't. You only have to look at some gallopers, Dressage horses, Pony Clubbers, campdrafters etc etc etc... you name it. And their owners. There are going to be people out there who do unspeakable things to horses in any discipline, as much as it pains me to think of it.
You have only to visit the local sales... Here, the majority of horses being sold for dog meat are either ill/unsound (why can't people have them put down caringly?) or horses that PEOPLE don't need or don't get on with. Sometimes that's an outgrown child's pony, one that doesn't suit someone or horses surplus to the racing industries. Ultimately, people are the reason why horses have come to end up being sold as meat.
Yes, I transgress. In the wild, survival of the fitness etc...
Where money comes into the equation, horses HAVE to produce. And not all owners/trainers take the long view. I wish they would, but that's how it is, sadly. I would like to think that the majority of owners/trainers have their horses' welfare at heart.
Some, or I might say the majority of trainers/handlers/owners are pressured to produce money from their horses. Add to that personal issues and you have a recipe for some dreadful things happening to horses. I would like to think that the majority of trainers do care for their horses.
I have to say that thinking of things like this happening to Standardbreds is utterly repugnant. I have found STBs, without exception so far, (and I've owned a lot of them and trained many more) to be the outstanding breed which has a truly genuine work ethic and great temperament as well as being athletic individuals.
I am not by an means excusing the behaviour described in the previous post! I sincerely wish that more people could get to know Standardbreds at first hand and offer more good homes for Standardbreds after racing! They are very much worthwhile working with and the myths currently extant of them being "ugly", "clumsy" etc are easily dispelled when you see some of the fabulous Standardbreds who have had the opportunity to have a life after racing.
Hi, he was raced from 2 1/2yrs for 6 months around the nsw country pace races. He was last in nearly all his 7 starts. This is from his freeze brand info. I also have his breeders name but can't find anything on the net about him. .......... has been flogged with a halter or bridle and a rope. He shows me this went I pick up or hang on his fence either one. He is also very ear shy on the right side that I haven't been able to work through. I gather it was twisted to restrain him at some point. He has some leading manners but will try for dominant horse. It's subtle most of the time, but having raised horses from foals in a herd environment, I see it, it only takes one reminder though, in the situation. When I am leading, he stops with me, walks slow or fast, trots, turns with me, left or right , lowers and raises his head with little pressure. BUT as soon as someone or something else comes into the area, he'll spin away to face them/it up or bolt away. I can pick up his feet after a battle of wills (he try's to sit down), I guess the farrier wasn't kind. He ties whilst I'm there, but if I walk away he panics and pulls back, he broke a fence paling doing this, so I dont leave him alone tied now. If I leave him untied in the roundyard, he'll pace the fence till I'm back insight. Once he even started calling out. This doesn't happen when he's free in the paddock. I have found that if I don't talk to him whilst working with him he works things out quicker and more relaxed. I guess he was yelled at a lot. I have never ridden him, I would not have control enough. I can tell from the ground. The woman I got him from hadn't, she could never catch him. She got him from the sales, his pen gate had "doggers" marked on it. She was told he was in a paddock for 10yrs after being raced. I put a bridle on him once. He was calm till I went to take it off. He started shaking his head like a dog does when it's wet. It traumatized ME to much to try again. I don't mind if he's just a lawn mower, we have a sort of bond. He has a home for life, I just thought maybe there was something else I should be doing. I spend a lot of time sitting in the paddock reading or watching him and I think he might even like my company, as long as I don't invade his space too much. I'm hoping one day something will click, but I guess the damage is too deep. Thanks for listening to me. Sorry it's so long winded. Your the first person who hasn't said "what did you buy a dud horse for" "you should send him to be canned". In --------- defense, he has NEVER struck, bit, kicked, reared, charged or run over me. He's not that way, thank God for him. If you have any advice, I would appreciate it. Again, thank you. Kylie
To utter the immortal words of Slim Dusty.....
"Well he's lookin kind of jaded and his sight is not the best and the hair around his muzzle is turning grey.
He has seen a 100 musters and I think it's only fair, that we leave him in the long yard here today."
You are a very nice horse owner and your horse is lucky to have you.
15th October, 2003
I have ridden most of my life (38) and I still feel like I know nothing. My Father bred/rode/trained/campdrafted etc.(A million years ago.) He was a quiet unassuming small gentle man, I hope I am the same, except for the man part. I have a bit of trouble with the old know it all's at Pony Club,(kids) Adult Riding Club (me) etc. An example: My Daughter rides a beautiful conformed and well behaved 14.2 quarter horse mare. someone rode up her backside at a hundred miles an hour at pony club and she made it clear she was'nt happy, now she has an unjustified reputation, I've even been told by an aged old bag to tie beer cans to her tail and leave them there untill she stops kicking.
The Point! I will get there!!! I like your style, I am always scared to speak up and more than likely let people behaving badly walk all over me I really enjoy your soapbox and "A day in the life of"
Madge, ignore the old bags. Every Pony Club has at least one. Anyway, from a training point of view, wouldn't the 'old bag' be better off teaching the kids to stay away from the rear end of every horse instead of just selected ones? The ones with red ribbons for instance? They all have their days and they can all kick given the right circumstance. Perhaps you may dress all the other Pony Club horses up as beer cans after the re-education. That aughta fix her!
I love your site, it is wonderful to see some good old fashioned
2nd September, 2004
I am responding to all those people regarding pony club committees.
I am pleased to say that every one on the committee of the pony club of which I attend all own and ride horses at all different levels. It makes the club alot more interesting and fun for everyone. Not just beguinners or those at such a high level you know the only reason they attend is to get enough quallies so as to attend at state level shows.
The comradery at our club is exceptional.
I was a breed shower years ago and up until recently felt the same way about pony club. People were bitchy, never helpful and flat out SNOBS! I flat out refused to go, until a friend of mine kept telling me about her pony club. It's only been around for a few years and is still relatively small. The best part is that the bickering and backstabbing found in some of the older clubs is non existant in ours. Well, it took her about 3 months until I finally caved in. Now I am on the committee!!
We are active in Zone events and participate in alot of fun activities. We were also selected to go to the State Champs this year! Sure there are mothers on our commitee, but they all ride and so do thier kids. Northern Hills began by a few people who got sick of all the bull found in other clubs, so the left and began their own.
If you want to have some fun, further your instruction (we get alot of guest instruction too!), go on a few trail rides amongst some fantastic scenery (rolling hills, grass, creek etc etc) and we also have our end of year party. No boring presentation night for us. Get the DJ, pump out the music and have a barn dance!!! YEA!
No Northern Hills Pony Club is not your average pony club. And you know what? We are all very glad about that.
Contact me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
FROM AN AMERICAN BREAKER
Dear Mr. O'Leary:
Thanks for that. Very interesting. I guess the difference is in the number of games that people learn and how they are restricted within them. There are the 7 games, good ones of course and then Ray Hunt and the like would have about 10,007 different games . I am still inventing new games, every day and on every horse. I'll catch up with you one day soon.
Dear Mr and Mrs HP,
This letter, makes me think about Pony Club in yet another way and brings the reality of the problems within it, into the realm of simplicity. You have put it perfectly. My motivation has always been to make things better for the horses of Pony Club and for the Riders' of Pony Club. What you have described is reality. That is what happens. Exactly. So how bad is that? It borders on the terrorization and almost cruelty of the one we are supposed to love the most. The horse. We want them all to hang off the mouths of these poor unfortunate animals, for hours on end and yet we won't teach the kids why, how, to thus bring relief to the horses. You are dead right. They should all ride on loopy reins until such time as proper, qualified, proven and experienced Instructors attend. That means NCAS, EFA Instructors, NOT PONY CLUB INSTRUCTORS with the phony accreditation that means nothing. It is an appalling state of affairs and just another reason why I get so frustrated about it. Pull rank on them or leave.
In response to your ranting page, I'd just like to add my 2 bobs worth
just recently had and new outside mare and foal arrive from a very
respectable stud. The foal had a very wonky for use of better term hind
leg, hock swivelled to 90 degrees from body when he walked and his hoof
on that side was half the size of his other hind hoof. Hence after
advising new client his foal was stuffed we had it exrayed and scanned
to reveal the poor little bugger had had a crushed and dislocated pelvis
which had healed suprise suprise incorrectly.
17th August, 2005I have read some of the stories about the pony clubbers in the world.
Well I found out the hard way if you say to much they give you a hard job to try and shut you up (made me Chief Instructor), but I am glad to say that I am now very proud of our club, we do lots of different things, we introduce ground skills, presentation, in hand showing, care of the pony and horse all hands on, some theory thrown in for good measure, we also pride ourselves in being a club were all instructors still ride (in some form or other) and some even compete against their children in jumping and hacking. To say that some even have to lift their game and jump a little higher to be in front of the 11 and 13 year old competing on ponies and already jumping 85cm. We also have a great club when traveling and share our uniforms if they are in short supply for events. When I took over Chief instructor (with much input from the outgoing one) and advice from the parents who ride through their kids, I have developed a system for lessons from one rally to the other, I encourage the children to watch other people having lessons, even their average mum or instructor learning new ways, I also find that our instructors are always passing on what they have learnt from another person.
I went to pony club with my instructor never having even sat on a horse (and good thing to a 19hh Shire would have been the only horse to carry her) and I believe that text book instructors are not the best at times, there is no fear factor if a pony bolts past they donít know what is going through the childís mind. I like the idea that all Level 1 trainees (EFA) have to pass a riding test which includes dressage scores and jumping 90cm. At our club we also include other horse industry people (being parents mostly) race horse trainers, camp drafting people, harness drivers etc to give these children a broad view of the horses in general.
But mostly we do need to educate the owners and parents of the good feeding and care of the ponies they buy, I have also invited the local RSPCA person (who happens to be my good friend) to talk to kids and show them the horrid things that some uncaring and uneducated animal owners do to their charges, that did shake a few kids up but they also learnt a very important lesson about feeding and care. I as a horse owner spend more on horse feed each week than the family meals, we donít go without but buy cheaper and grow our own, I was always taught to feed my horse first as he cant go shopping for the things he wants and cut back on the luxury we donít need. My children would rather go to a horse event and compete than the movies or have a lunch order each week, and funny enough the movies is nearly the same price as the entry fee to a horse event. We love doing things as a family having 4 out of 5 that ride (partner has a boat and keeps us in fresh fish). I believe that the pony club is the cheapest form of instruction we provide and is the one day a month we (hopefully) have the attention of the little dears so lets try and make the best of it and teach them the life skills they need to enjoy their ponies/horses until their old age.
I was wondering if you could post this on your soap box.