Enhancing Performance? Or Abuse? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 16 Old 05-15-2007, 12:25 PM
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Rollkur is a big one - it's a dessage training technique where the horse's head is drawn right in to its chest (supposedly for very short periods of time) and bent at an unnatural point to make them hold it correctly during tests. And something of a contentious issue lately since some of the top dressage riders ahve come out saying they support its use. Look it up. (personally I think it's horribel and unecessary)

Also the bucking strap used on animals in rodeo. I'm pretty sure that comes under performance enhancers.
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post #12 of 16 Old 05-17-2007, 12:26 AM
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Originally Posted by maddie
saddle seat can be soooo cruel, they put ginger or something between the horses' but cheeks so that it stings nad they lift their legs really high and and walk all wierd, also they put chains around the ankles like with TWH and they also wear these gigantic shoes that look like the equivalent to high heels and they wear them alll the time. i heard they liek wave stuff in their faces to freak them out so they look perky in shows. Lastly, look up tail setting, its so disgusting and cruel, its where they do surgery just to make the horses' tail stay up straight and i bet they dont turn their horses out... which is sacrilegious in my book
Take a look at these videos of Tennessee Walkers.

I've ridden Saddlebreds for the last ten years, and I would just like to point out a few things.

Nobody in the Saddlebred industry has ever put ginger between a horse's butt cheeks. That doesn't make sense, and would not do anything to make the horse perform better. Saddlebred trainers put small chains around the horse's ankles, to get them to try to lift their legs out of the chains, which builds up muscle. Tennessee Walker owners put chemicals on the back of the fetlock, so they have sores there, and then put heavy chains around their ankles to rub on the sores every time they take a step. This is why the Performance Walkers in those videos can't walk right. They look ridiculous.

Here is a picture of the sores:

Saddlebreds wear the same shoes as any other horse. They do not wear big shoes.

Here is a picture of the normal Walker shoe:

If you look closely, you can see where the hoof ends, about three inches from the ground.

Saddlebred trainers wave whips in front of the horse's face to get their ears forward. It does not "freak them out," it simply gets their attention.

The surgery to make Saddlebreds hold their tails the way they do sounds a lot worse that it is. I've heard someone say the tail is broken, and re-set to be carried up like that. That is not true. All they do is cut a ligament in the horse's tail. They sedate them, and it's completely healed in no time.

And not turning them out? That's ridiculous. You obviously don't know anything about the breed. You can't just go assuming things like that. My Saddlebreds were always turned out daily.

Take a minute and watch this video about Saddlebreds.

Is it not obvious to you how much pleasure those horses get out of showing off in front of a crowd? That pride is something Walkers, Fox Trotters, Morgans, Arabians, and other breeds can only hope to achieve in the show ring.

This is what Walker owners do to try to get that:

Look at the pictures at the bottom of that page, and tell me Saddleseat is cruel.

I saw a video about soring, but I can't find it. It had vets and farriers talking about it, it had people filming Walkers undercover before shows, and you could see the grooms rubbing chemicals on the horse's fetlocks.

It had clips of Walkers collapsing in the show ring because they can't put any more weight on their feet.

It also said that all Walkers have to go throught an inspection before going into the show ring. The inspector will rub the horse's pastern to see if he flinches, and he will check for scarring or open wounds. They had clips of horses trying to yank their feet away when the inspector touched them, and then being allowed to show. They also said that some trainers will touch a horse on his feet where it hurts, and hit him if he flinches. They train them to stand there and take the pain, so they can be shown. Look at any picture of a performance Walker in the show ring. They aren't happy.

Notice how I keep saying performance Walker. I don't have anything against flat-shod Walkers.

I don't mean to start anything, this is just something that bothers me. People that don't know about the two breeds think they look the same, and naturally assume Saddlebred owners do the same horrible things as Walker owners do.
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post #13 of 16 Old 05-19-2007, 11:36 AM
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Here's the video I was looking for.

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post #14 of 16 Old 05-21-2007, 06:22 AM
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In showing i've hard of people "pinning" horses where when measuring a horse to mak them go under height at home they use a sharp pin to prod into the horses wither so when being measured they automatically sink and cower to make them be shorter.
Also of people doping horses including kid's ponies making them "psycho" to win.

I've also heard in showjumping(i think it's illegal now though) Wher they would have 2 people standing at the jump 1 at each wing then after the horse took off lifting the pole making the horse 'rap' the fence therfor making them jump even higher.

I also have heard with standardbred's using a chain contraption making it hurt them if they canter or break out of trot.

Hope these help.......
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post #15 of 16 Old 10-18-2007, 08:06 AM
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Im an avid competitor in the harness racing industry(standardbreds). Ive never heard of using chains to keep a horse in gait. Peronsally I think chains would encourage a horse to make a break. Generally we just use hopples which are more often then not seen on pacers. As for trotters, its rarer to see a trotter with hopples. There isnt many "physical" tricks to make a harness horse do what you want them too. Ive been around to many stables and worked on many farms and they are all the same. Most young horses already know their own gait and after a bit of practise, tender to keep it.

Now as for chemical abuse, thats a different story. A big drug in the industry now is EPO. Many trainers/owners/drivers have been suspended for a 10yr period with fines exceeding $10 000, and also having their horses suspended from racing due to the use of this drug.

EPO is a drug used for cancer patients to increase red blood cells. If I remember correctly, its only admistered once in a very long while. With the horses, they use it to increase the redblood cell count but administer it ever week (or everyother week) before the horses race. Yes horses have dropped dead from this drug as any living thing can only take so many red blood cells before it overloads.

Now this summer there was another drug found, but many of the highly respected trainers were found with this in their horses. I believe over 10 of them claimed they never used it. It was believed it could possibley be something in a certain brand of feed. Personally I havent kept up much with this story.


just a little blurb on EPO
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post #16 of 16 Old 07-30-2008, 06:28 AM
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My experience

I don't know if you are still investigating this topic or not. I am most familiar with QH training. Years ago before the rules were enforced the way that they are now, western pleasure trainers WOULD tie their horses heads to the rafters of the stall for hours at a time. They would also bleed and drug horses to make them so weak to create that "peanut roller" appearance. I also had a horse many years ago who had scars across his poll and forehead where the trainer had put wire around his head and attached it with chains to his hocks so that every time he took a step it would jerk his head down between his knees. By the time that we got him, he was unable to lift his head above the height of his withers. With time and rehabilitation (and lots of TLC) he made a super roping horse and a pretty decent reining horse. I don't know that you will find many sites that detail what many horses go through during training to create "a winner".
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