Tag Archives: horse

Good Luck Giovanni : Horse Scout sponsors Giovanni Ugolotti at Badminton Mitsubishi Horse Trials

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Horse Scouts sponsored rider at Badminton Mitsubishi Horse Trials is Italian Rider Giovanni Ugolotti who make his debut at Badminton riding the lovely Stilo Kontika.  And the pair of them have ridden a good test today with a score of 65.11%, giving them a fighting chance tomorrow.  Giovanni represented Italy at the World Equestrian Games finishing in 22nd place having only made his senior debut the year before at the European Championships in Malmo where he and Silo Kontika had a double clear.

If you want to follow Stilo Kontikas profile on horse Scout here is his link Stilo Kontika

Good luck Giovanni.

A Warm Reception for Freezing Rain: the only British Stallion to have approved status by the KWPN Studbook

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Freezing Rain is a young stallion on the way up.  Born in 2010 this 16.2hh handsome bay AES Stallion was bred at Paddock Woods Stud with Select Stallions, where international event rider Emily Llewellyn and Polo player and show jumper Max Routledge are based. This stud with second to none facilities is a family run stud near Godalming in Surrey where the Grand Prix show jumper Typhoon’s son Freezing Rain was bred in 2010.

Freezing Rains listing on Horse Scout’s Stallion pages has some fabulous pictures of Freezing Rain and his sire Typhoon S. Freezing rain was assessed in the UK by the KWPN inspectors and was allowed to attend the two KWPN stallion grading shows in Holland in 2012 and early 2013. From the 500 3 year old stallions assessed by the KWPN  only a few, whose confirmation and jumping ability and veterinary assessment were of sufficient quality were invited to attend the  50 day performance testing in the autumn of 2013 where Freezing Rain he was made ‘Approved’ by the Studbook!

This has made Freezing the first British bred stallion ever to reach this level. We are justifiably proud of this achievement. Ricky is only a 5 year old Stallion but he is already making a name for himself. His first foal born on the stud has been named Mr Rainmaker he and paddocks Woods say “ He is a beautiful stamp of foal and is really bright and bold in his temperament”.

Freezing Rain is out of Tiandra (a Heartbreaker mare) and by Typhoon S Paddock Woods top breeding and competition stallion.

You can find out more about him on his Horse Scout listing page by clicking this link

Record Breaking Progeny for Stallions on Horse Scout.  Stallion review Woodland Wavavoom

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Son of Wavavoom, Woodlander Wild Child, followed his mother (Woodlander Farouche) into the record breaking books by being the highest scoring horse ever in the BEF Futurity when he took the Foal title.

Hanovarian Stallion Woodlander Wavavoom has power  and expression.  Woodlander Studs beautiful chestnut stallion has a wonderful temperament, power & paces. Woodlander Wavavoom has provided a real flag to wave for British Breeding. In 2010 and 2011, he qualified for every young horse Championship with scores of 8 and above and as a 4 year old was runner up in the Badminton Yong Horse Championships to Woodlander Farouche. 2011 saw him again as a finalist at the National Dressage Championships and the Reserve Champion Shearwater 5 year old. In 2012 he returned to Germany to complete his life approval with qualification for the German Bundeschampionat. As a six year old, he scored 86% at Advanced Medium. In 2010 he had only one foal and this was the Hanoverian Champion but in 2011, he surpassed himself by heading the stallion rankings for the BEF Futurity having presented 10 foals and achieved 6 Elites. Not surprisingly, his cross with Woodlander Farouche was the highest scoring horse ever for Futurity with 9.79. In 2012, he remained the highest scoring UK based stallion with more Elite Offspring and, once again, the top pony foal. In 2013, Wavavoom qualified for the summer and winter regionals at Medium and Advanced Medium, and unforgettably was the sire of two licensed sons: Woodlander Wild Child and Woodlander Wales – both of whom were double stallion Champions for Hannoverian, WBS-UK and SPSS. 2014 saw the start of his new partnership with Bobby Hayler where he qualified for Winters and achieved his AM scores well above 70%.

Other supremely sucsessful offspring are:Woodlander Wales (2011)– Elite Sports Pony Futurity 2014; Small Competition Horse Champion SPSS; Supreme SPSS; Licensed Stallion (WBS-UK, SPSS, Oldenburg) – Champion Stallion
Woodlander Winwood – BHHS Foal Champion 2010
Woodlander Wirginia Plain – Elite Foal
Wikipedia – Elite Foal
Wonderful World – Elite Foal
Briarwood Wild Beauty – High First
Wasimah – Elite
Woodlander Wallis – Elite Foal
Woodlander Waterloo – Elite Foal
Waverley Wright Stuff (2013) – Elite
West End Diva (2013)– Higher First
Woodstock (2013) – Higher First

To find out more about Woodlander Wavavoom and the Woodlander Stud view his stallion listing on Horse Scout here

Stabilising Pilates for your stable

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Horse Scout Blogger is a great fan of Pilates as a way of increasing and maintaining good core strength. Using Yoga or pilates type exercises to improve fitness are as useful for your horse as for you.  Theses are exercises which have been adapted to take into account your horses structure.

  1. Core Strength

Core strengthening exercises strengthen and stabilise the spine and pelvic muscles as the horse responds to pressure over specific areas. If you have strong hands, you can apply pressure manually; if not, use a metal thimble over your thumb or finger. Perform three to five repetitions, allowing the muscles to relax for a few seconds after each exercise. Some horses, especially those that are girthy or cold-backed, may resent certain procedures. If resentment persists, omit the exercise until you’ve consulted with your veterinarian.

The following exercise stimulates lifting of the base of the neck, sternum, and withers through pressure on the ventral midline between the forelimbs. These movements are essential for self carriage.

Sternal, withers, and thoracic lifting exercise:

1. Stand facing the horse’s side, just behind the elbow.

2. Apply upward pressure to the sternum (breastbone) in the middle of your horse’s chest, between the pectoral muscles. Gradually slide your hand back between the forelimbs and behind the girth line while maintaining a steady upward pressure.

3. The horse responds by initially lifting through the sternum and withers. Then as the pressure moves further back, he responds by lifting in the thoracic area immediately behind the withers, and finally in the thoracic area under the saddle.

Note: the amount of pressure needed to stimulate a response will vary between horses, so start gently and increase pressure gradually, or use a slow stroking action until the horse responds.

  1. Balancing Exercises

Balancing exercises improve balance and stability by inducing the horse to use active muscular contractions to shift the centre of gravity toward his haunches and/or to resist displacement of his centre of gravity. A horse uses his muscles in some of the balancing exercises to shift his centre of gravity, while in others, he uses his muscles to resist a shift. Many of the balancing techniques used in horses are similar to those performed in Pilates and yoga training in people.

The next exercise stimulates activation of the pelvic stabiliser muscles to maintain the horse’s balance.

Tail pull:

1. Stand to one side of the hindquarters.

2. Take hold of the horse’s tail, pull it toward you by flexing your elbow. (The goal is not to pull the horse off balance, but to stimulate resistance in the pelvic stabilizer muscles.) You’ll see the muscles around the stifle contracting as the horse resists the pulling force.

3. You can gradually increase the amount of force applied to the tail or the number of repetitions as the muscles get stronger.

Remember to check with your veterinarian before including such exercises into your horse’s training regimen; this is especially important if the horse is recovering from an injury.

Core training exercises can be done without a warm-up–for example, in horses that are recovering from injury–because the horse controls the amount of motion, and loading of the joints is less than during locomotion.

How interesting: Brace yourselves for the low down on the effectiveness of Topical Applications (hot and cold) for muscle strain relief

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Exactly what is going on when you apply heating or cooling gels to your horses legs?

Horse Scout Blogger was watching the BBC’s The Truth about your Medicine cabinet last night.  Some very interesting items indeed.  However what caught my attention was the report on the use of topical muscle liniments to reduce reaction to strenuous workouts (obviously this was with humans).  Livery Yards (and competitive stables too) have tack rooms which are full of row upon row of expensive topical applications of hot and cold rubs to help muscle strain relief.  Diligently applied and expensively bought.  I am not a scientist but I am commenting “intelligently” on the scientific research carried out on the programme.

There were three groups.  For fifteen minutes Group One sat in cold (icey) water, Group Two sat in warm water and the third group rested.  In terms of recovery groups one and two felt an immediate benefit (distraction therapy it was called) group three continued to feel sore.  However, over the next three days the two water groups recovered considerably better than the resting group with only a 2-3% difference between the two water groups with the cold group thus marginally better recovered than the warm water group.

The conclusion was that using either cold or hot water treatment for 15 minutes increased recovery time.

They then went on to test both hot and cold topical embrocations from leading brands.  Whilst the subject definitely could feel the effect of the cold and the hot applications and the heat camera was definitely showing the difference in the skin temperatures, the effect had absolutely no effect on the deep tissue temperatures which both read the same and where a normal reading for resting muscles.

I leave you to draw your own conclusions with reference to the effect these topical cooling gels and heat linaments may therefore actually have on your horse.  Me? Well I always did think water was cool…..and pretty much free; especially if you can orgainise a pond or river to stand in.

How to compete using a “Class Ticket”. Tried and Tested, Job Done!

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Yesterday Horse Scout Blogger spotted that you could get a free class ticket on the British Dressage facebook page but “What are class tickets?”

By buying a class ticket, you can enter one British Dressage class without being a member or having a registered horse. You can use class tickets to compete and will be eligible to win rosettes and prize money, but will not receive BD points or qualification, except for Area Festivals and Combined Training Championships. If a rider using a class ticket wins a qualifier other than those specified above, qualification will pass to the next eligible competitor. You can buy a class ticket from the British Dressage Web site. These are also available in the competition section of this website. You will need to pay the usual class entry fee and abide by British Dressage Rules rules.

British Dressage say: Much more than just a ticket to compete!

If you are already competing in unaffiliated dressage competitions and want to get more involved in this fantastic sport then British Dressage is the place for you! Much more than just a ticket to compete, BD, the National Governing body for the sport in the UK, is a nationwide club for all things dressage, offering training, competitions, information and social opportunities for all. Your horse can earn nationally recognised BD points and you can qualify to take part in prestigious Championships or Festivals.

Most of all affiliated dressage is accessible. Complete competition schedules and lists of training days arrive on your doormat every two months as part of BD magazine. The BD website also carries this vital information (and much more!), and staff at the BD office are on hand during office hours to answer any queries you have. From where to go and what to wear, to competing internationally and representing your country – British Dressage is working to help you get the most out of your sport.

Getting Started

All affiliated shows are open to the public and the major championships are excellent opportunities to see the best at all levels and particularly the nation’s dressage celebrities competing for prestigious national titles. You may also want to go along to your local affiliated venue to check out the facilities and the competition!

You can get a taste for affiliated competition without becoming a full BD member by using class tickets available through the BD shop or by entering Prelim classes.

Class tickets cost £8 each and each ticket allows you to enter one affiliated dressage class without being a member or having your horse registered. You can win rosettes and prize money but you will not receive BD points or any qualifications. You can also use Class Tickets to gain the score sheets needed to qualify to enter an Area Festival.

More information about class tickets here

Rider Fitness Tips: 5 Top Tips to help Rider Balance and Posture

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5 Top Fitness Tips to help Rider Balance and Posture: Whatever you do off the horse, your muscles will remember when you’re on the horse. Start making a difference now!

Whatever discipline you follow with your horse: Make a difference to how you ride by improving your balance and posture.  It is as important to a top professional trainer as to the grass roots rider and will make a difference to how you ride.

Horse Scout Blogger is on the case: Being fit, independently of riding, mucking out, poo picking etc. will boost your riding and make things a whole lot easier for you and your horse. Your riding gets a boost from performing a regular exercise regimen at least twice per week, but you can also do little things in between to enhance your fitness.

  1. Walk instead:  walk just a little bit further when you are going shopping or to the office.  Park further away than usual, park your car away from the entrance and take a brisk walk to the door.
  2. Avoid the lift: Walking up even a single flight of stairs puts equestrians’ thighs and calves to work. Walk the stairs briskly and get a mini-aerobic workout, too. Doing two at a time is even better.  Lucinda Green’s top tip!
  3. A balance in life is one thing but balance is critical for success in equestrian sports. Develop balance every day by standing on one leg, then the other for 10 to 15 seconds whenever you’re brushing your teeth, having your coffee or whenever else the opportunity presents itself. Lightly grip a convenient surface (your shopping trolley in the queue for instance), until you can progress to doing this with no surface support.
  4. Don’t slouch: Good posture is critical for balance in the saddle, and for getting the long, lean look that catches judges’ eyes. But don’t just sit up straight in the saddle; do it at your desk and the dinner table, and walk with good posture, too. For those of us who are office bound there is a seat balance cushion….brilliant invention (if a bit prickly!).
  5. Your muscles have a memory and when it comes to posture and balance, whatever you do off the horse to help balance and posture, your muscles will remember when you’re on the horse.

A very useful Horse Sales Contract Template

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HORSE PURCHASE CONTRACT

 

 

This agreement is made the _______ day of _______________ 20__

 

Between: ________________________________________________________

(the “Seller”)

Whose address is: _________________________________________________

_________________________________________________

 

And: ________________________________________________

(the “Purchaser”)

 

Whose address is: _________________________________________________

_________________________________________________

 

Covering the sale of the horse known as: _______________________________

(the “Horse”)

 

Passport No: _____________________________________________________

 

Freezemark No: ___________________________________________________

 

Microchip No: _____________________________________________________

 

Height: ______________________________________________________

Colour: _____________________________________________________

Sex: _____________________________________________________

Age: _____________________________________________________

 

For the sale price of £ ______________________________________________

(the “Price”)

  1.  The Seller hereby warrants that they are the legal owner of the Horse and has the right to sell the Horse.
  2. The Seller declares that the Horse’s details above are accurate and true. The Seller declares that the details given in the sale advert (see below) are accurate and true: (Insert the advert published of the horse for sale here.)
  3. The Seller declares that the following oral statements made to the Purchaser are accurate and true:(Insert any oral statements or claims made by the Seller affecting the decision of the Purchaser to purchase the Horse.)
  4. The Seller declares that the Horse has exhibited no stable vices or behavioural problems whilst in their care, except as detailed below.(Insert any known stable vices or behavioural problems here.)
  5. The Seller declares that the Horse’s vaccinations for flu and tetanus are up-to-date.The Seller declares that the following additional items are the legal property of the Seller and are included within the Price.(Insert any tack and equipment included in the sale price here)
  6. The Seller declares that to the best of their knowledge the Horse has no unsoundness or health problems that would make the Horse unfit for general riding work.
  7. The Seller makes no warranties or representations whatsoever regarding future fitness and performance of the Horse.
  8. Upon receipt of a deposit of £ _____ from the Purchaser, the Seller shall issue a dated receipt to the Purchaser and agrees not sell the Horse to another party for a period of one week.
  9. The Purchaser has the right to arrange at their own cost a pre-purchase veterinary examination and the Seller agrees to make the Horse available for such.
  10. Such pre-purchase veterinary examination shall be carried out within one week of payment of the deposit.
  11. Should the Horse fail the pre-purchase examination the Purchaser has the right to terminate this Agreement with immediate effect and upon such termination the deposit shall be repaid to the Purchaser.
  12. Upon acceptance of any pre-purchase veterinary examination, or where the Purchaser has waived the right to a pre-purchase veterinary examination, the Purchaser agrees to pay to the Seller the balance £ _____ for the Horse within one week of the deposit being paid.
  13. Should the Purchaser fail to pay the balance within one week of the date of deposit, the Seller has the right to terminate this Agreement whereupon the Purchaser shall forfeit the deposit paid.
  14. Upon payment of the balance, the Seller shall provide the Purchaser with a dated receipt for payment and hand over the Horse’s passport to the Purchaser.
  15. Upon payment of the Price in full the Horse shall become the property of the Purchaser.The Purchaser agrees that they will arrange for removal of the horse from the Seller’s premises at their own cost within 2 days of payment of the Price in full.
  16. This Agreement shall be governed by the law of England and Wales/Scotland*.* Delete as appropriate.

 

Signed: ____________________________________________________

(The “Seller”)

 

Date: __________________________

 

Signed: _____________________________________________________

(The “Purchaser”)

 

Date: __________________________

 

Be a Brilliant Buyer – And your Professional Trader will find you a perfect partner.

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Be a Brilliant Buyer – And your Professional Trader will find you a perfect partner.

The advantages of buying form a professional Trader is that their reputation rides with you. Top Tips for making right decisions when buying a horse.

Many of Horse Scouts Professional Trainers and riders also sell horses. Generally they buy in or breed horses which they train and compete before selling on. Sometimes they do the same with horses owned by sponsors or clients. This is true across all disciplines, Eventing, Showjumping, Dressage, Showing and Endurance etc. This is part of their business.   Their skill is in being able to make the most of a horse, to optimise its potential at whatever level. You can be sure that a young horse will have had the best start to its training, a horse with competitive potential will have been carefully progressed and given the right opportunities and in the case of rehabilitation or retraining a horse will be back on track and ready to go on to lead a happy useful life.

When horses do well in their competitive arena (or, if they are new to the discipline or young, they will be gaining experience at grass roots level) with a top trainer on board, their successes are a reflection of the trainers skill and reputation. Horses which are bought to the market fit for purpose help a professional trader build a reputation and repeat custom. It is not in the interest of a professional rider to produce horses which are going to fail to support their business by being suitable for purpose.   Professional riders have the skill and experience to ride all sorts of different horses and know how to ensure that each horse is given a prgramme which is right for them.

However as a buyer you also have responsibilities to ensure that a Professional Trader can help you make the right choice when buying a horse.

When you look through the Horses for Sale listings on a site like Horse Scout you certainly have a lot of good horses to choose from.

However, it is fair to say that buyers have an obligation to honestly represent their skill level, the accommodations they can offer a horse, and their intentions to the seller they are contacting.

There are certainly an infinite number of tales that illustrate less than ideal partnerships but to be fair to the sellers it can come down to the failure of the buyers to asses their own situation or communicate honestly with the seller. Remember that no horse is ever “finished.” They are sensitive creatures that continue to learn new behaviors throughout their lives. A novice horse person can inadvertently “undo” professional training faster than a terrier will snatch and swallow the family hamster. Here are some thoughts about buyers responsibilities.

  1. If you make an appointment to go look at a horse, don’t leave the seller hanging by not turning up. If you can’t make it for some reason, or will be later than scheduled, call your seller. It’s the polite thing to do, after all.
  2. If the horse’s price is more than you want to spend, ask the seller whether it’s negotiable before you make an appointment. If the seller says no, you won’t be wasting your time or his.
  3. Bring your hard hat, and wear appropriate clothing and footwear for riding. Do not assume to wear spur of to carry a whip.
  4. You can ask if it’s okay to bring your own saddle. A seller would need to be sure your saddle is in good repair (intact tree, leather not weak or rotten, etc), and that it fits the horse you are trying. This provides two advantages. You’ll be using tack that’s familiar, and you’ll know whether your saddle fits the horse you’re considering.
  5. Turn your cell phone off while you are trying a horse. It’s rude to take the seller’s time with personal calls and a suddenly ringing phone may frighten the horse.
  6. Do not bring your dog. Many farms have their own dogs, and the sellers won’t appreciate the disruption of yours running around. Also, your dog may chase or injure the seller’s horses, or other animals.
  7. If you have small children and plan to include them, bring along someone to mind the kids while you concentrate on the horse. Unattended children with horses can be extremely dangerous.
  8. Be honest about your abilities and level of riding. If you have an ethical seller, he will want to sell you a suitable horse. If your seller is an experienced horse person, he’ll know pretty quickly how adept you are by watching you with his horse, so don’t fudge; it’s not worth it.
  9. A horse is an individual and frequently develops a relationship with the person who rides it most often. If your seller rides the horse first and the horse seems very well trained, don’t be disappointed if the horse doesn’t perform quite as well when you get on. Even subtle differences in riding technique can produce very different responses from the horse. It may just be a matter of time and a little professional help before you and your new horse become a team.
  10. Don’t be surprised if the seller wants you to begin in a small area, like a paddock or round pen. He may want to assess your skills, for your own safety and for that of the horse. However, be wary of a seller who doesn’t offer a larger area (a ring, arena or pasture) once he’s comfortable with your abilities. Dishonest sellers know that a horse may be fine in a round pen but will bolt for the hills in a open pasture.
  11. Ask the seller about the horse’s daily routine and feeding schedule. A horse that is turned out every day and is eating grass or a little hay could turn into an entirely different horse if you buy it, keep it in a stall and feed it grain. Ask your seller about the level of activity the horse is accustomed to; is it ridden every day, every week, once a month? If you buy a horse that has been worked regularly, but you plan to ride once a month, your horse may not be as easy to handle after a month of leisure. Conversely, if the horse goes from being ridden once a month to your enthusiastic regime of five days a week, the horse may become sore (as you probably will). You’ll go home and relax in your hot tub. Your new horse might buck, rear, kick, toss its head, or refuse to move because that’s the only way it has to indicate pain.
  12. Take note of the bridle and bit used by your seller. Consider buying something similar if the horse works well and seems relaxed.
  13. If you are shopping for a horse for your child, its looks, cosmetic blemishes and color should be the least important factors in choosing. Look for an older horse, and plan to spend more.

Your seller might ask you:

Details of your experience with horses

What sort of support you’ll have; for example, a trainer, a very experienced friend, riding lessons, etc

Top tips for a work out warm down for your horse

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With the competition season on track and the weather warming up (promise it will….soon) Horse Scout Blogger has been thinking about the warm down after your horse has worked. Just like you he will be warm, his heart rate and respiration rate will be elevated. No matter what the season, when horses work hard they produce heat and sweat. Properly cooling down your horse will ensure he stays sound and healthy. A daily workout for your horse probably consists of four separate periods: warm-up, active conditioning or schooling, warm-down, and cool-down.

During warm weather training, the warm-down and cool-down periods are especially important because horses may be hot from conditioning exercises. The warm-down is the steady reduction in exercise intensity and usually consists of 5 to 10 minutes of low-intensity exercise that culminates in a relaxed walk. While horses will invariably sweat less as athletic effort decreases, the importance of a warm-down is more than skin deep. Foremost is the redistribution of blood within the body. When a horse is exercising, oxygenated blood is carried to the hardworking skeletal muscles, and other organs of the body receive slightly less blood than they normally do during periods of rest. As the warm-down period extends, more blood is allocated to those organs and less to skeletal muscle.

The cool-down is distinct from the warm-down period. The warm-down, as mentioned previously, occurs when mounted and ends with a relaxed walk on a loose rein. The primary objective of the cool-down is to prevent overheating following dismounting. The horse should be untacked immediately to allow maximum heat dissipation, and should be moved to a covered or shaded area with as much air movement as possible. One of the most common methods of cooling a horse in hot and humid environments includes spraying or sponging with cool water. Body-wide application of cool water is acceptable during normal summer weather when temperatures are between 80°-100°F. The most strategic points for effective cooling include the underside of the neck and barrel, and the inside of all four legs. Drinking water can be offered to the horse once cooling has begun, which is determined by a reduction in body temperature, heart rate, and respiratory rate.

Allowing a few swallows every few minutes during the cool-down helps the horse replace water lost during exercise. Horses should be encouraged to drink their fill. When your horse sweats on a daily basis, even in cold weather, it is best to provide a supplemental electrolyte. Electrolytes replace the minerals lost in sweat and encourage drinking, which reduces the risk of dehydration and muscle disorders.

Proper care of a horse following a ride signifies sound horsemanship as well as a healthy dose of respect for your horse.