How early can you halter show a horse?
Any age, as long as you can lead them, make them trot inhand and kinda stand still. (And Lildonkey her first show was when she was about 3 months.)
Is it possible to show a crossbreed as long as they're registered (or even if they aren't)? It depends on the show. Big shows may want papers as proof others may not, that usually breed shows though. If the horse is a cross bred the main thing is making sure there in the right halter class, like are they stock type, pleasure type, colored, non-colored. Some places will have breed classes as well.
How do you teach your horse to stand squarely?
Everytime you stop you set them up. You use the lead rope imagine an X under the horses chin, that is your track that you have to stay on while setting up. If you pull forward or backwards on / you move the left front on right hind if you pull or push on \ you move the front right and left hind. You have to do it a lot and get teh horses used to moving there feet for this. When I'm training for showmanship or halter I use a chain under the nose so that they know were 'working' and not just leading. Everytime they stop they are set up. The goal is to have they set up automatically when you stop and if you do have to set them up its 3 moves or less.
How should you dress, and what type of halter is preferred in show?
This depends, at big shows slack pants and a 'show' shirt are the thing. At small shows still try and use slack pants or some nice jeans and a shirt that goes with. Something basic. For sport horse you want to wear slacks and your white under shirt or something nice and professional. Stock type a basic western button down is ok for local small shows the bigger the show the more expensive the show jacket.
Depends on the breed. Arabs you use an arab halter, quaters you use a leather halter with fancy silver on it, sport horses usually use a bridle. For foals we use arab halters for the sport horse types and nice leather halter for the stock types. They do make fancy stock halters for foals. In general if you don't want to spend a lot of money just use a well fitted leather halter that is clean.
Is it better for the horse to be shod for show?
That is up to you and the horse. As long as your horse has well trimmed or nice tight shoes the judges wont care if they have shoes or not. Some horses like it better without some do better with.
Must horses have their manes pulled, or may they be grown out?
Again depends on the breed. Arabs leave them down. Stock types pull them. Most Sport horses pull then braid some leave them and do running braids or net them.
What are the basic rules?
Have fun, smile, show your horse, don't run the judge over.
Last edited by haflingerlover; 04-27-2011 at 04:37 AM.