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ModernThreat101 02-03-2012 05:21 PM

New TWH owner - Helpful pointers appreciated!
 
I've recently invested in a wonderfully spirited TWH mare. She's 5.5 years and 15 hands and has a wonderful personality! I don't know if she's typical TWH temperament (as she was in heat when I met her; a little moody at her worst), but what a wonderful ride she was! She's been trained on light-shod and barefoot - any pointers on the best way to maintain a Natural barefoot gait?

I've been doing some reading and research, both in books and online and had a question about saddles and which would be best for a gaited horse and her new gaited-horse owner? I've been looking heavily into treeless saddles, as I've a small frame, but I was wondering about the benefits/disadvantages between each kind of saddle (treesless vs flex-tree vs treed gaited saddle)? I'm kind of new to the riding world in general, but know I will be riding exclusively Western style. I realize you really just have to ride to determine true comfort for both parties (horse and rider), but I need conversation on this beyond what Google searches and texts have to say. :lol:

I'll be purchasing a bit from the training farm I purchased her from, but I honestly know very little about bits. Help? I know these horses need to break at the poll and collect themselves, which helps them spring into the full Walker stride while gaiting, and I know some bits are harsher or softer, but I really don't know differences beyond Brand names... and that doesn't help me understand how they work on a gaited horse.

Any pointers on her diet? She's been mostly on pasture with 12% protein/8% fat grain on days she's been trail-ridden or worked really hard, but has been mostly on pasture land in the last 6 months, just being a horse. When I do finally get her shipped to her stable, she'll be on grass and grass hay most of the time with 11%protein/--% fat grain feed. I don't know which would be best for an animal that will be ridden for about eight hours a week, either in a ring or on the trail, nor how many times a day; I need an idea, anyway. I don't plan to show at this time. Nor breed (thank goodness...).

Anything else I should consider? Thanks for your time in reading this post and for your comments.

I'm so excited... I can't wait to see my mare again!:D

kstinson 02-07-2012 02:31 PM

Imus Training Transition Bit I used this to start my mare initially when just getting her used to a bt I used a regular snaffle, but moved up to this within 2 weeks, she loves it and it is very gentle.

This is the bit I used now, my mare loves it Imus comfort gait Bit

As for feed, my mare is coming 4 and a show/trail horse. When I amworking her i feed her black sunflower seeds, mineral and some beet pulp...if she needs some extra weight put on I use Power 2000. Srtaight grass hay, or pasture grass all summer.

As for a saddle, I prefer a tree, I have ridden in both and I feel more secure in a treed saddle, the treeless you can really feel the horses movement though and if you're a smooth rider then it comes down to whatever you're more comfortable in. The Imus 4-beat saddle and Tucker endurance saddles fit nicely on them as well.

Hope this helps some and would love some pics!!

ModernThreat101 02-07-2012 03:18 PM

Thanks for the links! And the pointers! She's my first horse, so I want to get as much right as possible; school can only prepare one for so much!

Honestly, Ill probably be getting a bit from the trainer I purchased her through, but it is certainly helpful to see how other gaited bits are made. I made sure to find a finished horse, so I don't think Ill need anything more than double reins and hopefully not too often. She was a bit moody the day we met (of course, buying a mare? she just -has- to be in heat!)

She'll be mostly on pasture grass during the growing seasons and mostly hay (grown at the farm she will be boarded at) during the winter months. The trainer said that 11% protein feed was adequate, but we'll see how her BCS changes over the next few months. She was in less condition than her webpage showed, but she wasn't thin, just thinner.

Tennessee Walking Horses - CLOUD 9 WALKERS (Tennessee Walking Horse Mare))

I visited this ranch late January and was BLOWN AWAY by the quality of their farm, their barn, and their animals. My friend and I settled on this ranch for a number of reasons and have certainly found quality animals.

Know anything about shodding a gaited horse? These horses have been light shod (mostly up front) or barefoot. But the newest addition to my furry family will be moving from relatively soft pastureland to more rocky terrain. The trainer says the hooves should handle it, and I am inclined to believe her, but I would enjoy other input.

Thanks again!
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kstinson 02-07-2012 03:42 PM

Oh for sure! A girl I ride and show with she rides in a Wonderbit and her mare loves it. It is always nice to know which ones have had good results so if you ever have to switch or try something else you can. I use the shank on my mare but really only switched to it because it is essential for show horses after 4 years old here in Canada (i'll probably use the transition bit for western this summer as we're not quite there for neck reining and she is young enough yet to get away with it lol)

I LOVE your girl, and yes mares have a tendency to be in heat when you are doing something important lol, my mare has those crabby days although they are less and less frequent because she knows it's a waste of her time!
I have perused Cloud 9's site many times and have always been really impressed with what I have seen there, some great horses and what appears to be great horsemanship. She's got a great back end and some nice front action on her and looks like she is going to be a fabulous trail mount.

As for shoding TWH, my mare has been either barefoot or keg shod. I do know that a long time trainer had said that our feet did not have enough heel on them and so we are now growing them out and with that comes keg shoes with trailers on them for extra support, but for the line and angle of the horses movement they angle of the hoof is very important...they can be worn for competitive trail and any trail riding really as they live inthe mountains and ride all through them with those shoes, but this summer will be our first go at it. I woudl recommend shoes of some kind as you don't want her hooves chiping off all the time in the rocky area.

Mellow Mel 02-08-2012 06:39 PM

I have my twh in a rockin r gaited saddle. Fits him well! Congrats on your new girl!!!

ModernThreat101 02-08-2012 06:41 PM

Thankies!
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Mellow Mel 02-08-2012 06:41 PM

She is a BEAUTY!!!!! When do you get her?

SueNH 02-08-2012 07:35 PM

She is lovely!

Dished head, my mare has a dished head too. Several of the same stallions showing up in the pedigree. Must be a family thing.

Tickled to see the charro saddle too. I have one. Haven't tried it on her yet but was planing on it come spring.

ModernThreat101 02-08-2012 08:01 PM

She should be coming home by April latest! A dished head? She seemed straight enough, but I can see what you mean in a number of her profile shots.

I'm not sure what saddle I should choose. I have another post in the tack section of the forum. I know it has a lot to do with comfort of myself as well as the animal, but there are so many details to fitting a saddle! And i certainly don't have the cash to custom fit... beh.

Mellow Mel 02-08-2012 08:12 PM

wait until you get her to get her fitted. you might want to look into a gaited saddle. i just went through the search and ended up with the rockin r gaited saddle. it is very comfortable and fits well.
how are you getting her to you...i see she is in texas. did you fly down there to meet her?


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