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im training p.k. for halter this year. he is my 2 yr old quarter horse gelding. what is the best way to get muscle on him? how muscled up does he have to be? how long will it take to get him into shape considering this is his first year of ever being handled. he is quite chubby right now with a lot of baby fat!i cannot pony him because he doesnt like it and he goes soooo slow! and he pulls back and doesnt enjoy it much. i think its because the only horse i have to pony him with is a half tn walker which trots fast.any help would be great! should i give him any extra supplements to help with energy? he is my first halter horse so i dont know a whole lot about the event!
 

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I know a lot of the pros pony them off of 4-Wheelers but I don't know if that is an option for you. Is he going to be a rideable halter horse or just a halter horse? If you're going to do performance halter with him then I suggest lunging and trail riding. Do hils, do trot and canter intervals, etc. If you're not riding him and can't pony him then I don't think you have much of a chance but I don't do halter so maybe someone that does would have more ideas for you. Sorry I couldn't be more help.
 

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My girl is pretty stocky, but you can see where she could fill in more, so this is a good question for me too. By the way...what is ponying??
 

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Ponying is leading a horse while riding another. I would " pony" my now 6 year old mare when I trail rode my gelding on trails when she was a yearling.
Good food is key to building muscle, and hills, trotting, hills and hills. From what I hear hills are good too. hahahha. getting the idea? lol. I don't do anything special, but I only attend local shows. Good food and fun works for me.
 

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what is the best way to get muscle on him?
High protein feed and LOTS of work. As others have mentioned, hills are GREAT.
how muscled up does he have to be?
Like any other judged competition, it is very subjective and judges' preferences can vary widely. Many prefer the very muscled, very stocky, "Impressive" look, but I've also seen judges call these horses "fat" even though they are not fat, just very stocky.
Here's our halter type Paint mare (very muscled/stocky w/Impressive blood). We haven't shown her, but her 1 year older sister that looks like her twin has done very well in halter class (but has been called fat by a couple judges, too).




how long will it take to get him into shape considering this is his first year of ever being handled. he is quite chubby right now with a lot of baby fat!
If he's really chubby, I would take a couple months of work to get him in shape.
 

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Peetz: haha yea I think I get the point on the hills, thanks dear. I love hills so I'm going to take her on some.

Paint: Hey, your middle horse in your avatar looks just like our paint!!! And as for the picture of your horse you posted, my mare comes from the impressive blood too, and she is very stocky, but as I said, you can easily see muscle that can be filled in and I'm trying to work on that. Thanks for the tips, even though this isn't my thread...sorry for stealing it chika...I really wasn't trying too lol
 

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Several things come to mind while reading your post. First is that if you don't know about halter
he is my first halter horse so i dont know a whole lot about the event
then, before you do anything, you should go to some local shows and see how and why the judges place the horses. Ask a lot of questions and ask the winners what they do to prepare their horses. If you don't understand the event, how do you expect to compete? There is much more to halter then showing up with a well conditioned horse.

As for supplements to increase muscle .... those are called steroids and a no-no for anything. If your horse needs more energy, look to your feeding program. The use of alfalfa can be a big help. If you can't get alfalfa hay, you can always get pellets or cubes - just be careful with it.

As for ponying, the fact that your horse doesn't like it so you don't do it, means he is lacking in his training. It isn't a matter of whether he likes it or not, he does it because that is what he is supposed to do. The fact that you have a gaited horse and your colt can't keep up at the trot, just means that you should slow down to a walk.

The long and the short is that exercise - hills, a good diet, and more exercise is what you need to do. There are no supplements that you can give your horse to take the place of the proper conditioning and the proper knowledge.

When I started team penning, many years ago, I went to quite a few shows and watched, and asked questions, and watched some more. I took what I learned from attending the shows and trained my horse (he had the proper breeding but not the right training). I then took my boy to a few shows just to acclimate him to the event before ever attempting to put him in the arena. We penned for a good number of years and won a lot of money. It all came from experience and the proper preparation.


 

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I'm not much on wanting to show my horse, I was just curious as how to get rid of some of the flubber and replace that with more muscle. But I think I know what I'm going to do for that, I've gotten some good advice already from others, and as well as you, iridehorses. Thanx for the advice!
 

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Trotting, lots and lots and lots of trotting. Builds the most even consistent muscle. That, combined with as much high quality hay the horse can eat. I'd be careful with the alfalfa though, maybe 1/2 alfalfa with 1/2 grass hay, alfalfa can make horses hot, and a hot, very fit, highly muscled horse can be a pain in the butt!
 
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