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Serious question. No meaning behind it! What is wrong with Western Pleasure? I don't know enough about it to guess what it might be and am curious.


 


I'm never going to show so I have no opinion about your opinion. :) I ride western with no purpose really. Upkeep of horse and love of horse. Eventually more trail riding. So really just curious!


 


Right now I'd say a peeve of mine is a 34 year old stalled horse and how his last days are going. He's on his way out. No one knows exactly but I'd be surprised if its more than a year. His mouth is horrible which is causing other issues and nothing can really be done. Not for lack of having vet interaction! But he could be outside. He doesn't need to be in that stall. He gets indoor turn out while stall gets cleaned and owner has an assistant hand graze him a few times a week for a short period of time.


This was a higher value show horse. He had to have blankets on him at ridiculous times to stay clean, won people some decent money, he did his job for years. Now give him a great ending, geez!


I got permission to hand graze him also but for 10 minutes a day. It does make me happy to help him out a bit. I've only done it for a week but when i'm there working and cleaning he aknowleges me whenever I walk by now. No other workers really take to him. I think its because he's been on his last legs for awhile now and they dont want the inevitable?


There are a few horses similar to this at this barn but they are younger and still showing. I guess I can attempt to understand that. But this horse could have better now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
Serious question. No meaning behind it! What is wrong with Western Pleasure? I don't know enough about it to guess what it might be and am curious.


 


I'm never going to show so I have no opinion about your opinion. :) I ride western with no purpose really. Upkeep of horse and love of horse. Eventually more trail riding. So really just curious!


 


Right now I'd say a peeve of mine is a 34 year old stalled horse and how his last days are going. He's on his way out. No one knows exactly but I'd be surprised if its more than a year. His mouth is horrible which is causing other issues and nothing can really be done. Not for lack of having vet interaction! But he could be outside. He doesn't need to be in that stall. He gets indoor turn out while stall gets cleaned and owner has an assistant hand graze him a few times a week for a short period of time.


This was a higher value show horse. He had to have blankets on him at ridiculous times to stay clean, won people some decent money, he did his job for years. Now give him a great ending, geez!


I got permission to hand graze him also but for 10 minutes a day. It does make me happy to help him out a bit. I've only done it for a week but when i'm there working and cleaning he aknowleges me whenever I walk by now. No other workers really take to him. I think its because he's been on his last legs for awhile now and they dont want the inevitable?


There are a few horses similar to this at this barn but they are younger and still showing. I guess I can attempt to understand that. But this horse could have better now.
I am sorry about that poor horse. That is clearly a case of neglect no matter how much money they are or have spent on him. Do the merciful thing, geez.

As far as Western Pleasure goes, it is the extremely artificial gaits and head and tail carriage, and the extreme procedures so often used to procure them that I object to. Used to be it was a class to show off your easy-gaited, relaxed, smooth, pleasure-to-ride stock type horse. Now it is a specialized form that has nothing to do with the way horses are ridden outside of that WP arena. Just watch some video of a championship AQHA WP class and make up your own mind.
 

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Can someone PLEASE come and explain to my horses that being in a stall is a bad thing! Really please!!! let alone 3 in one stall??? GET OUT I tells ya! Maybe if I shut the fans off? Maybe if the sun wasn't so brutally hot right now? I'm not sure but my old guy is in his stall more often than not right now and that's fine with me. He has earned the right to be and do where ever whatever he wants... I know everyone frowns on being stalled but to me there's times to... again to each their own!
 

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Discussion Starter · #44 ·
Can someone PLEASE come and explain to my horses that being in a stall is a bad thing! Really please!!! let alone 3 in one stall??? GET OUT I tells ya! Maybe if I shut the fans off? Maybe if the sun wasn't so brutally hot right now? I'm not sure but my old guy is in his stall more often than not right now and that's fine with me. He has earned the right to be and do where ever whatever he wants... I know everyone frowns on being stalled but to me there's times to... again to each their own!
This time of year my horses stay in their stalls all day in front of their fans eating last year's hay instead of the green meadows they have complete access to. Once the sun goes down off they go to graze all night in the cool flylessness. About dawn they show up for breakfast.

Nothing wrong with stalls per se, as long as there is also freedom.
 

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I knew some people who kept a young stallion in a small stall with a hotwire around the inside of it so he would behave. They did let him out into a round pen for exercise everyday. He was beautiful--well groomed--good weight. What a miserable life though.
 

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Right now I'd say a peeve of mine is a 34 year old stalled horse and how his last days are going. He's on his way out. No one knows exactly but I'd be surprised if its more than a year. His mouth is horrible which is causing other issues and nothing can really be done. Not for lack of having vet interaction! But he could be outside. He doesn't need to be in that stall. He gets indoor turn out while stall gets cleaned and owner has an assistant hand graze him a few times a week for a short period of time.


This was a higher value show horse. He had to have blankets on him at ridiculous times to stay clean, won people some decent money, he did his job for years. Now give him a great ending, geez!


I got permission to hand graze him also but for 10 minutes a day. It does make me happy to help him out a bit. I've only done it for a week but when i'm there working and cleaning he aknowleges me whenever I walk by now. No other workers really take to him. I think its because he's been on his last legs for awhile now and they dont want the inevitable?

I wouldn't judge this too harshly only knowing surface level. Is turnout best? Yeah. But if this horse has spent his whole life in a similar routine, it's possible being turned out outside stresses him out too much that it's damaging to his health. 34 years old isn't the time to address those changes. When they're that old you let them do what they want.

Or maybe he has some delicate soundness problems that outdoor turnout might compromise.
 

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I knew some people who kept a young stallion in a small stall with a hotwire around the inside of it so he would behave. They did let him out into a round pen for exercise everyday. He was beautiful--well groomed--good weight. What a miserable life though.

We had a stud like that at one place I worked. During the summers he would be running with his mares, then winter he'd get boarded. He'd get stalled at night then turned out to a private paddock. Until he broke out of his paddock then he only got turned out in the indoor arena. He'd climb his stall walls, so those were hot wired. His owner never rode him despite that being the reason she boarded him, so this horse went from pleasant to scary fast. HATED turning him out. Putting his blankets on was a nightmare. He bit me once so I punched him so hard he broke his halter (turned out last for a reason...). Took every tool to get him to walk quietly when he finally got outdoor turnout again.


Big difference compared to the other stud I've taken care of who was turned out almost all the time across the fence from the geldings (could touch noses too), ridden almost daily. Very nice guy.


How about that as another peeve? Studs who shouldn't be studs and people with studs who don't have the time, knowledge, or facilities to handle them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #48 ·
We had a stud like that at one place I worked. During the summers he would be running with his mares, then winter he'd get boarded. He'd get stalled at night then turned out to a private paddock. Until he broke out of his paddock then he only got turned out in the indoor arena. He'd climb his stall walls, so those were hot wired. His owner never rode him despite that being the reason she boarded him, so this horse went from pleasant to scary fast. HATED turning him out. Putting his blankets on was a nightmare. He bit me once so I punched him so hard he broke his halter (turned out last for a reason...). Took every tool to get him to walk quietly when he finally got outdoor turnout again.


Big difference compared to the other stud I've taken care of who was turned out almost all the time across the fence from the geldings (could touch noses too), ridden almost daily. Very nice guy.


How about that as another peeve? Studs who shouldn't be studs and people with studs who don't have the time, knowledge, or facilities to handle them.
I approve of this peeve.
 

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Well I show open, not breed but Otis has won pleasure breed classes with a youth. I can get him going super slow and so low because he is built for it and loves to do it. I have to get him level and longer strides for open showing, otherwise we'd get the gate, most times. There are a few breed show judges that cross over to open, and they seem to judge open with breed show standards, most will not though. But it's not so much about going low and slow, it's about self carriage and cadence. For the record, I did win the pleasure class in this weekend show, and many others English and Western, but my favorite was third in reining against reiners that come to our show to practice, and I won Ranch Horse too! We can move out too!
 

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The only option we get is to like a post or comment. Here's a few I'd like to see.

You gotta be kidding me.
That's the dumbest thing I've heard all day.
Why hasn't anybody hit you in the head with a shovel yet?
Cathartic, yes; persuasive, not so much. :)
 

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1. You are misinformed. Outsiders know nothing, nothing. Your ignorance appalls me.
2. It's very rare. Every discipline has its bad actors. They are just a few bad apples that have nothing to do with regular practices. I have never seen anything like what you are talking about.
3. I take what you said very personally. I would never do anything to hurt my horse and deeply resent the implication that I do, or would.
4. Every discipline has an ugly side. What about Rollkur? What about (fill in the blank about some other totally unrelated thing that is easy to see is wrong).

Rinse, repeat.
1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argument_from_authority
2. https://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Not_all
3. https://thelogicofscience.com/2015/11/25/stop-accusing-me-of-ad-hominem-fallacies-you-stupid-idiots/
4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Whataboutism
 

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@mmshiro I am often surprised at how many people have never taken a course on basic logic and or critical thinking. They often lack the ability to spot even the most obvious forms of logical fallacy like 'ad hominem'. It's one of the major reasons I try not to argue on the internet no matter how much I dislike the other persons' position.
 

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Discussion Starter · #54 ·
True. And that is why we have lost a long-time HFer this week who brought a wealth of knowledge to this forum. I find it disheartening.

My pet peeve? Finding fault.
This is the best combination of experience, education, helpfulness, and politeness to be found on the internet in terms of horse boards, as far as I can tell. The mods here are more judicious and thoughtful than any of the other boards. If that person finds a better virtual spot to pull up to, more power to her.
 

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Some people are more sensitive than others, we don't all have the same mindset or the same likes and dislikes, we come from different backgrounds. If we can respect each other's point of view and position, and rejoice in the fact that we are all involved in horses, yay! I will say it again, you cannot banish one form of equine activity/sport without contributing to the demise of our future. Eventually it will become a world where we are riding in a small circle in the middle of nowhere because that will be the only place is zoned for a horse. Everyone else will have lost interest because their venue is gone.
 

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Perhaps I should elaborate on my "log out, walk away" comment.

For me, there are days where I am aggravated by my real life then I read something in the internet I disagree with or think is stupid and I am on the hook looking for a fight.

There are other days when my mood is super peachy, I could read the same thing, roll my eyes, text a friend "read this sh!t", laugh and move on.

I know for myself there are days I am better off to walk away and choose not to engage or oblige the argument. Sometimes it is hard for me to do!
I will say the best thing I have done so far -divorce Facebook.
 

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I am sorry about that poor horse. That is clearly a case of neglect no matter how much money they are or have spent on him. Do the merciful thing, geez.

As far as Western Pleasure goes, it is the extremely artificial gaits and head and tail carriage, and the extreme procedures so often used to procure them that I object to. Used to be it was a class to show off your easy-gaited, relaxed, smooth, pleasure-to-ride stock type horse. Now it is a specialized form that has nothing to do with the way horses are ridden outside of that WP arena. Just watch some video of a championship AQHA WP class and make up your own mind.
To any newer or younger riders out there reading this that are/were interested in WP, I think it's important to note that this is not the situation in all WP. Rules vary from club to club. What's being described here is more of the competitive levels of the sport. We do LOTS of WP shows here locally with our younger/newer riders as the relaxed pace is a great way to introduce kids/new riders to showing without the extreme competitiveness. It's all about being and feeling relaxed and being 'in-tune' with your horse's movements in the arena while also enjoying yourself and showing off your riding progress! It's proven to be a great confidence builder, and gives our been-there-done-that horses a relaxed job. Everyone at some point in their riding-life has to decide what's acceptable treatment of the horses. If we start nitpicking disciplines too far we only become more divided as a community, because where does it end? Go far enough and we would never ride as humans riding horses was not a natural evolution for the horse.

In a public forum such as this, I don't think you can really condemn one high level horse sport without pretty much condemning them all (jumping, dressage, racing - barrel or otherwise, etc...) as they all have their unnatural quirks. I'm not trying to change OP's mind, as apparently they've heard all the arguments and none are good enough to justify WP existing, but a blanket condemnation of just WP without acknowledging the shortcomings of all horse sports and addressing it as a black-or-white situation (bad vs. good/exist vs. doesn't exist) isn't the path we should take when impressionable minds are reading.

I'm not going to say anything more on this, but I wanted this here for those reading that may be interested in getting started in your local WP shows. I don't care how many logic classes y'all did or didn't take, you can't argue away the positive experiences we've had in WP for both us and the horses, and I'll vow to leave it at that.

Ride on, ride safely, folks. :cowboy:
 

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Discussion Starter · #59 ·
Well, I used to love Western Pleasure and showed in it at a low level, but that was nearly fifty years ago. At that time it was the basic intro class for western riders. You just needed a horse who could behave himself in company, and had three decent western gaits. Glad to hear it can still be that way.

The fiercer the competition, the more fertile a bed it is for distortion and for cruelty and suffering. Those are not required but if they give an edge, they will not be refused. Those who do refuse them will mostly leave the sport or at least the level at which they come into play. This is not just horses. And it applies as much to the competitors as their instruments of competition. Competitors abuse their own bodies in order to compete. Not just play through temporary pain, but permanently damage themselves. We glorify and exalt this level of competition, we carry these people on our shoulders. We put them on television.

I will never forget, way back when, bringing my corgi to the National Speciality Show when it happened to be near me that year. He was bred to be a show dog but he was terrified of show ring and everything around it. He didn't do well. Not that I had any investment in it -- the Pembroke Welsh Corgi had changed so much since my first one, who was the practical 'big dog in a small package' of the old style, and this dog, my last corgi before I gave up on the breed, was a fair example -- no legs, ten times the undercoat of my first dog, with the temperament of a chihuahua. But that's not the memory I want to share. It was the sight of my dog's breeder's stud dog being prepped for the get of sire class by being left strung up in a grooming sling on a table, so if he tried to move or lie down he would be strangled, for several hours before the class, so that he would be so happy to be released he would show the 'animation' that was needed to show well. This was not hidden at all.

He won his class, too. What are the odds that breeder did the same thing at the next show? It was the last dog show I ever went to, or ever will go to.

Next month is the Lippit Morgan Country Show in Vermont; I went last year and enjoyed myself so much I want to go this year too. It's a low key family event with pretty little horses who by and large are friendly, alert, and calm. The same horses compete in pleasure riding, driving, trail classes, halter classes, and even a trotting race. There are no gigantic rigs, no big name trainers with their posse of grooms and disciples, and I daresay there is nobody making any money there except the concessionaire. It reminds me of my own local-show days as a kid.

I've been railing about the ugly side of competition for oh, thirty or forty years now. All it does is make people mad at me. I doubt I've swayed a single mind. Oh well.
 
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