What do you think: Can a blind horse barrel race?

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What do you think: Can a blind horse barrel race?

This is a discussion on What do you think: Can a blind horse barrel race? within the Barrel Racing forums, part of the Western Riding category
  • Is it safe to barrel race a horse that is blind in one eye?
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    01-31-2011, 10:07 PM
Question What do you think: Can a blind horse barrel race?

About a month ago, I purchased my first horse. She is a 13 year old purebred QH. Right now I'm working on getting she and I both back into shape because it's been a while on both our parts. I decided recently that although I don't know if I'd ever actually show her, I'd like to do something together with her -- a goal I can work towards with her, even if it's just a "thing" that we do together. When I was in high school, I loved barrel racing. That's what I've decided want to work towards.

But here's the thing...

Not only is she not trained to barrel race (I realize I would have to get a trainer or work hard with her on my own), but she is also blind in her right eye and has been since age 2. I've heard stories of horses being able to show blind, but I was wondering what your take on it is. Is it feasible?
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    01-31-2011, 10:09 PM
Anything's possible!
    01-31-2011, 10:26 PM
Yes it's possible, as long as she can see out of the other eye.
    01-31-2011, 10:30 PM
I heard of somebody barrel racing an entirely blind horse... they said everyone's always stunned to find out he's blind. I bet you'd need a very trusting relationship for that
    01-31-2011, 11:20 PM
I have a friend who has a jumper that's totally missing an eye. Animals can do wonderful things to compensate for missing an eye.
    02-01-2011, 12:12 AM
There are lots of horses out there that are successfully run in the barrels that are blind in an eye. You just have to be very patient with her and let her tell you how she is most comfortable running the pattern. Me, personally, I would run the pattern where she is only turning one barrel to her blind side but sometimes there are horses that prefer it the other way. Just keep your cues very clear and tell her exactly where to put her feet and body when going around the blind barrel so that she doesn't hit it with a shoulder or hip and you should get along just fine.
    02-01-2011, 01:43 AM
My friend owns a horse named Magic he is completly blind in one eye and the other he is almost blind in. He is a amazing horse, and has taken alot of patience and rider trust. Its the teamwork that will win in the end, and the relationship. Garett and Magic worked together for a long time teaching each other how to be each others guide so to speak. As of now Magic is a 2d/3d barrel horse. So in my opinion yes a blind horse can barrel race :) just takes time, patience and alot of trust
    02-01-2011, 03:26 PM
My mare only has one eye and she barrel races, jumps, and does trails just fine.
    02-01-2011, 04:34 PM
We ride a QH which is blind in one eye......she does everything
    02-02-2011, 12:28 AM
Green Broke
Certainly possible!

As you can see by the other posts, there are lots of horses with only one eye that can accomplish just about anything.

Just be very sure to keep a good trusting relationship between the two of you and always make sure she is comfortable and understands the situation.

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