Monday, November 8, 2010

LOOKING FOR: HH Majestic Illusion

Past owner is looking for any information on the following horse:

HH Majestic Illusion, also known as "Jessy"
1996 (14 years old) Bay Half-Arab Gelding
Markings: left hind sock, star and a scar on his right cheek/jaw and a starburst shape of white hairs under his star from an injury when he was a baby

Additional Information from previous owner: "I sold him to a Beth Scanlan, in Trenton, Mo. He was transferred to her daughter’s name of Ashley Scanlan and then transferred again to a Moonlight Gift Arabians in Iowa. This was were he was supposedly located when he was sold at some auction some 2 years ago. I bred and raised “Jessy." I would LOVE to at least know that he’s in a good home."

If you have any information on Jessy, please contact Linda Harper at lindakharper* (replace the * with a @), or leave a comment on this post.

If you wish to remain anonymous feel free to leave an anonymous reply to this post. Any and all information is greatly appreciated. If you're looking for a horse or have a horse that you'd like to find the history on, please send me an email at

Friday, November 5, 2010

A Small Change--This Blog is Now YOURS

I've had this internal battle over this blog for quite sometime now. I feel like I'm not doing the good with it that I really wish I can, to honor such a great mare and really make a contribution. The problem is, anyone who does read this blog either (1) doesn't need to read it, aka "preaching to the choir" or (2) thinks they know everything anyway so they read but don't think any of it applies to them. In either of these scenarios the information written on this blog is doing nothing to make any real contribution towards the betterment of horses.

So, in light of the situation with Kerry Kid, and after obtaining my own self-imposed permission requirement, I've decided to use this blog to truly help others. There are so many horses out there that ARE loved, but are deemed "unwanted" just because their last owner decides to throw them away. Kerry Kid was a prime example--there are no less than four people who genuinely would have given him a great home, if they had known about him, but instead he was actually turned DOWN by a kill buyer! In my eyes this is unacceptable. How many other slaughter-bound horses out there could have had great homes if the right connections had just been made?

I've decided to post, one-per-day (and hopefully at that rate) the horses that people are looking for, or horses that people have gotten with little or no information and they want to know more. I hope we can make some connections, like we did with Kerry Kid. I just happened to be in the right place at the right time, reading the right webpage and in the right frame of mind to remember him. It can't hurt at all to post as many other horses as we can to hopefully jog someone else's memory.

If you have a horse that you would like featured, email me at Please provide the best picture(s) you can of identifying marks, any known in formation (like last location known, names, etc) and be sure to specify whether you are looking for this horse, or have this horse and you're trying to track down it's history. Any and all breeds welcome. Don't forget the long-ears, too :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Hay You Guys!

Note: Be sure to click on the links for references and much more information.

High-quality forage is probably the best investment you can make in your horse's health. Above all else, a horse is a grazing animal and will require most of its nutritional and caloric needs be met through grazing and roughage. If adequate pasture is not available, then hay becomes the next best thing.

There are many different types of hay available in the US, and many types are area-specific. However, hay is usually broken up into two different catagories:

Legume Hay (alfalfa, clover, lespedeza)

Grass Hay (timothy, brome, prairie, bermuda, fescue, orchard grass)

Legume hay tends to be more calorie and nutrient-dense, and is generally a better choice for performance horses, young horses, and breeding stock. Grass hay tends to have a better nutritional balance and is a better choice for adult horses that do not fit into the other catagories. Of course these are generalities, and may not be true in your area.

Nutritional content of hay varies widely by area. I've learned this through experience. The alfalfa I got in Arizona was not the same as the alfalfa I got in Kansas and it certainly was not the same alfalfa I got in Missouri. Nutritional content can change dramatically even locally--a 50 mile drive in my area can make all the difference between stemmy, hard-to-digest hay and fine-stemmed, leafy, beautifully green hay.

I have tried to picture the most popular types of hay below, linked to an article with more information.





Prairie Hay

Ideally, everyone would be able to test their hay. Unfortunately that is often not what is practical. There is, however, a "test" you can perform on hay when you pick it up, to ensure it's the best quality hay possible. Although nutrition can vary with region, you can still determine good hay by appearance. With the help of an equine nutritionist, you can combine different hay types available in your area, along with supplemental nutrition such as grain, supplements, beet pulp and bran, and develop a program that keeps your horses in optimal health.

Monday, October 18, 2010

No Hoof, No Horse

Anyone in the horse industry that has had to deal with laminitis, navicular, white line disease, or a host of other foot ailments that plague horses knows how important a healthy hoof is.

I admit it--years ago I knew how to clean out my horse's feet, and that was pretty much it. I knew what the frog was, but the internal mechanisms of the foot were lost on me. I had a farrier for that, afterall, right? A farrier was a person I felt I should be able to call up if there were any issues in the general hoof area at all. A farrier was supposed to fix that stuff, afterall.

Then I adopted a special-needs stallion and the only farrier in the area decided he'd leave on a hunting trip for two months without telling me, standing me up for our already-set appointment (right when the horse was due for a trim and reset), so this circumstance forced me to learn more about the hoof.

It's sad it took an extreme circumstance to get me to learn more about my horse--something I hope to never repeat again.

So, it's my hope that by providing some resources, that you, too, will be inspired to expand your knowledge about the hoof, whether you are a professional farrier, or have a horse as a pet in your backyard to keep the weeds down. One thing about the equine hoof--there is always something to learn!

To the right I have a list of links and among these are some websites that deal exclusively with hoof-related issues:

Barefoot for Soundness
This is where I first learned to trim from and it still serves as a very handy resource.

Pete Ramey's How-To Articles
I am forever referencing these articles. While some of the cadaver pictures are a bit unsettling, once you get over the "ick" factor, they are extremely important learning tools to see what the inside of the foot looks like.

A healthy hoof

I'm not saying, by any means, that everyone should trim their own as I do. It's terribly hard work, and if you aren't careful you can really do some damage. Honestly, if you have a good farrier, then be sure to tip him/her a little extra next time. They truly don't get paid enough for the hard work they do!

I think, though, it is very important to try to be as educated as possible as to how the hoof works, what the signs of trouble are (sometimes the signs appear before the trouble does, and if you know, you can help stop it!), and it even helps the farrier out when the owner is more knowledgable. In the past couple of years I've had to call a farrier a couple of times due to my back troubles. I'm always pleasantly surprised that when I explain that I usually trim my own, the farriers tend to come out much more quickly, follow up with me better and do a better job trimming! It's truly a win/win, to become as knowledgable about our equine friends as possible.

Thursday, October 14, 2010


It's coming! Are you ready?

If you're anything like me, winter is your least-favorite season. It's cold and there are very little daylight hours. Both those things add up to very little riding time.

Plus, feeding and watering seem to take twice as long when you're trudging through the snow, or having to chip ice out of a tank because your tank heater has malfunctioned.

It doesn't really matter if we like it or not, though--winter is coming. The best we can do, short of all moving south, is to prepare. The Horse recently did a great article on preparing for winter weather.

Earlier this year I also wrote a post on my other blog about the importance of making sure that our horses have fresh water all winter long.

It's time to increase your horse's feed, make sure they are in optimal health, make sure they're wormed (and I'll add clean the manure out of your pens/pastures and scrape those bot eggs off your horse's legs, or worming doesn't do as much good), get those shelters and blankets all ready, get all your feed stocked up, and test your tank heaters.

Then go inside, make sure you've got plenty of hot cocoa on hand, hunker down and pray for spring!