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Thursday, April 30, 2009


I believe the person who once owned the horse that this saddle was made for is a reader. If so, I am not trying to offend. If it weren't for the seat, it wouldn't be too bad as a show saddle. I like black saddles, and it looks to be very high quality. Without the seat, which admittedly would be mostly covered by the rider, I wouldn't object to using this on my filly. The seat is just too much though. So, sorry, I'[m not trying to be offensive.

That said...dang this is a tacky sucker.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The Inescapable

Apparently I will never be able to escape from the hideous, piece of junk, painted cardboard leather, Pepto-Bismol pink saddle. Every time I begin to relax and forget the hideous, this happens...
AAAAAAAAAAAH! NOOOOOOOOO! (runs screaming from the computer).

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

For Cut N Jump

Googly Eyes for you! Does make the saddle more "fun" no less hideous though! ;-))
Yes, sometimes I have too much free time, and a slightly odd sense of humor.

The Right Equipment for the Job

Ok, so I was browsing Dreamhorse today and ran across a photo that all I could do was look at it and grimace. Here it is.

This horse is SUPER cute, and looks like a willing fellow for putting up with what is going on. I shall refrain from being too critical of the rider's position, but when she lands, she is in for a nasty surprise. This is a prime example of why it's a bad idea to use the wrong tack for a given activity. This poor girl is going to end up landing and either getting a saddle horn to the sternum, or it will get caught in the band of her bra and she is going to be stuck to the saddle horn (that sucks, I can assure you, I once was doing sort of an emergency dismount and got caught like that), or a combination thereof. But hey, at least she won't inadvertently chuck him in the mouth, what with being stuck to the saddle horn by her bra.
So, moral of the story, if you are planning on jumping, I strongly suggest using a jumping saddle and not a Western one.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Bad Jeans

These saddles were brought to my attention by a reader. They are perhaps one of the strangest concepts in "synthetic" saddles I have seen yet. They are covered in denim, not only that, they have artistically (snort) placed wear and tear in the denim. What I want to know is why? I can kind of understand covering a saddle in denim. Hey, it's sturdy, comfortable, easy to clean and light. But why the rips? And in places where they would cause discomfort for the rider. They also possibly create weak spots where the likelihood of developing a REAL tear is higher. What if you get those little frayed edges caught on something?

Here we have one in a traditional "blue jeans" color with white (God why?) accents. The white would be beige in minutes around my house.

Here is a look for those going for a more "business casual" appearance. The same saddle shown above, but in a nice light/dark khaki color scheme. Again, without the rips, wouldn't look too bad.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Friday Favorites - Spanish Tack

I know you all know this but I love, LOVE Spanish and Portuguese tack. I love the look of it, and the super secure seat some of the saddles provide. A kind reader (bad you, fueling my addiction) sent me several links to companies that carry a huge variety of drool-worthy saddles and tack. I WANT the sidesaddle from this site...

I love the fact that you can custom order the saddles in different color combinations. I would like the sidesaddle in black with red suede please, if someone wants to buy me one LOL.

This site also has a variety of saddles, some quite reasonably priced.

This last one is also quite nice, with a variety of products including harness and vaulting equipment. They have the color options on a Portuguese saddle that I would settle for if no one wants to get me that sidesaddle LOL!!

All of these companies are overseas, so shipping is kind of pricey. But they have many of the same products found over here (remember the Baroque Horse Store?) at a better price even considering shipping costs.

The Hate-Mailer's Reply

Well, I guess someone must have gotten the point. Here is the reply from the girl who sent me the nice little letter that I posted about earlier in the week (in blue).

ok, shes doesn't like shanks, and i dont crank on her mouth. i gently pull her around. barrel racers are only suppose to guide their horses around the barrels and thats what i do. my horse is a runaway in the arena but i can take my hands off the reins when were just riding and she just stops and stands. 80% of the time i ride her in a regular D-ring snaffle, she does just perfect. i even run barrels with her in the snaffle, she just needs a bit more to actually come to a stand still after putting her whole heart into running for the person she loves and to do the stuff she loves. my horse is only 9 and shes one of the best trained horses in our county for sure. every one i know loves her and they're like "oh wow shes so fast and shes such a sweety, she listens to you SO well"if you want to see a video of my horse when she actually puts her whole heart into what she loves and then CRASHES in to the gate because the bit wasnt strong enough to tell her to come to a complete STOP even though she is trained to stop( shes THE BEST horse in the world and i can do ANYTHING with her in ANY bit except for a curb, i also can stick a 5 year old on her and not have to worry about anything.

Wow, we have certainly changed our tone a bit. I think she still needs to work with the horse in the arena quite a bit. I suggest taking her in there, warming her up, and cantering some big circles at first, concentrating on asking her to slow down with a half halt, then speed up again. Get her listening to the rider's signals and paying attention. Then start asking for her to slow down with a half halt, then ask for WHOA. After she stops, let her relax for awhile on a loose rein, and just walk around the arena. Change up the patterns, ask for gait transistions from gallop to canter to trot to walk to stop, then reverse the order. Start skipping gaits. Go from gallop to walk, then from canter to stop back to canter. Keep working at it, she will learn. Try to do this in just a snaffle, in the arena she can't really "run away". If she makes for the gate at a high rate of speed, turn her and keep going around the arena, asking her to slow her speed with a half halt, get her mind out of the "RUN, RUN, RUN". Make her think.

She must learn that no matter where she is or how excited, she MUST listen to the rider. This getting excited and not stopping when asked is dangerous, as illustrated by the video. The horse sustained a pretty significant injury and it could have been so much worse.

There is an excellent book called 101 Arena Exercises by Cherry Hill. It has tons of advice and patterns to use when teaching a horse to listen to cues. This was my guide when I was "reprogramming" my runaway.

I will have the Friday Favorite post up later today.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Crazy Camo

My thanks to the reader who sent me this horror. Now, we have experienced the camo saddle in several different incarnations; Bubba and his Real Tree saddle, Boudreaux and his Mossy Oak saddle, and several others that used camo accents on seats, stirrups and the like. However, those all pale in comparison to this, um, unique saddle. It features camo of a different sort, a variety known buy the uncomplimentary name of Ghettoflauge. It comes in several varieties, pink, purple, blue, red, and various combinations thereof. This saddle is the pink variety and absolutely hideous. It comes in a set with matching bridle, breastcollar and saddle blanket. Yuck.

Please don protective eye wear.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Treeless Wonders

Over the past few years, we have seen a growing trend in saddles; the treeless wonder. Now, I am not knocking this idea, I ride with what is basically a treeless. I love it. I like to feel the horse. However, with this new technology, has come a huge number of synthetic and leather models in alarming colors. Thanks to your fellow readers, I have a large variety to share with you today.

First we have this little green and tan number. It reminds me of the Army with it's olive drab and khaki color scheme. The black fenders really don't go well though and I think should have been green as well. I also question the quality here.

Here we have a popular Bob Marshall type treeless Western style in leather. It looks very well made, but the color scheme is hideous.

This is a small child's treeless saddle. I like the brown, but could do without the pink. Although it is not nearly as offensive as most I have seen. For a child on a pony it might actually be kinda cute.

Here we have another Bob Marshall-type travesty. Who on earth thought that those colors match? Blech.

Gah! Mauve? Icky, icky, icky. And why put leather on the outside of the stirrups? It doesn't help this saddle's looks at all. It also doesn't look like the best quality, something just throws me off here.

Now, I admit I LIKE this saddle. Keep in mind that not only are black and red my favorite colors, but they are also the colors of the Kingdom of Gleann Abhann in the SCA. It looks quite comfy and reasonably well made too.

Now, this one is kind of growing on me. I don't really like teal that much, but in this saddle it kind of works. It looks well made and secure, as well as very comfy.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Holy Cow

Thanks to a reader who sent me this saddle.

Another hair on cowhide travesty. One wonders, knowing that hair is slick as snot (and really itchy too) for the most part, why would you put it on a saddle seat?

Monday, April 20, 2009


Got this little email from a reader. Apparently, she disapproves of the fact that I don't like harsh bits and don't think them necessary. Folks, emailing me and using all lower case except when using them to "yell" at me, tons of misspellings, and ranting at me doesn't really achieve much. I have copied her email (in blue) and my reply (red)...

ok im not going to TRY to be nice about this im just going to say it. the bits that you talked about and the way you talked about the horses was VERY insulting and it probably insulted alot of gaming people. Their horses are not crazy, they love to run, and if they didnt im pretty sure they wouldnt be running, trust me. the horses arent hard mouthed eather, i can stick a very harsh bit in my gaming horse's mouth and she will do everything i ask her to do, i can do the same stuff in a regular D-ring snaffle. but i NEED more than a snaffle beacause she LOVES to run (and i dont think she would ever stop if she could go on forever) and i NEED to stop her. they get more desencitized to the bit than pleasure horses because they arent being turned abunch. (and please dont say i dont know what im talking about, cause im pretty sure i know just as much about horses as you. ive been around horses since before i was even born) but please it would do whoever reads your blog a faver if you would do a BUNCH a research before you post something on the web

Absolute bullshit. The excuse you use of the horse becoming desensitized to the bit is bunk. Why are you cranking on their mouth to turn them in the first place?

I have a mare that was a confirmed runaway. She still loves to run. It was nearly impossible to stop her when I got her. Even the strongest bit had no effect, the harder you pulled, the faster she went. She will still do this if you are too rough with her mouth when riding, and she is 27.

Want to know how I fixed the problem?

I TRAINED HER TO STOP. With anything; bit, sidepull, halter, or even a leadrope looped around her neck.

If your horse will not stop whenever you ask, with whatever you ask with, then perhaps you might want to do a bit more training.

I know a lot of folks agree with her, I also know that many do not. You do not NEED a big harsh bit to stop a horse. You just don't. If you can't force it to stop with pain (hello, if someone was hurting ME I sure would want to get away from it) perhaps it is time to rethink things. Using harsher and harsher bits to force a horse to listen only worsens the problem. What happens when the nastiest bit in the world won't stop them? When you run out of options? Sell the horse and get a new one?

Read this story, this is the story of my old mare, I tried the stronger bit approach, see where it got me?

OT Polo Horses Die at Florida Meet

Apparently, several horses arriving from Venezuela dropped dead at the US Open in Florida Sunday.

Here are some links to the story...

NBC Sports Reports as 14 horses dying.

Google News This story claims it was 21.

There are many conflicting reports on the actual numbers of horses affected. They seem to suspect some sort of poison. Perhaps tainted drugs or feed, vets hope the necropsy reports will provide answers.

There are very few things that could cause a mass basically simultaneous die-off like this. Hopefully it has something to do with feed or drugs and is not an outbreak of infectious disease and not more widespread.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Favorite Movie Horse

We all have our favorite actors, but who is your favorite equine star? Maybe it is a horse who was not necessarily the "headliner", but was a key part of some film.

My favorite equine star is Cass Ole', otherwise known as The Black Stallion. Who couldn't love this horse. I am a huge fan of the books, and some part of me will forever want a big black Arabian stallion to gallop down the beach bareback on.

I also love many of the horses from the Lord of the Rings trilogy. I WANT WANT WANT the horse who they used for Asfoloth (Arwen's horse) and the horse that Eomer is riding (a big iron gray fellow).

Another favorite of mine is the little dun horse from The Man From Snowy River. I hold my breath as he launches out over the cliff and lands at a gallop, it is amazing. I still can't watch the part in the Return to Snowy River when he gets shot.

And of course, Cisco from Dances With Wolves. Who didn't cry when he died? I STILL do. I have to fast forward through that scene.

So, who are your favorites?

Thursday, April 16, 2009

OH, my eyes! They are bleeding!

Thanks to the reader who linked me this catastrophically hideous saddle and accessories. These are very possibly the most horrible things I have ever laid eyes on. Really. This is an equine fashion DON'T. Something that should never be used, not ever. I have no idea why anyone would actually pay money for this. I also don't know of many horses that would not just die of embarrassment from being forced to wear it.

Without further ado (sunglasses folks)....

GAH!! Shiny, metallic leather FRINGE!! The seat is also shiny, metallic leather, as well as the cutouts! And, as if the shiny, metallic fringe on the bridle isn't ENOUGH tacky, they have added rhinestones and fuzzy white hair on cowhide, squeee! Wow. Run folks, run far, far away.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009


Sorry for not posting again! Work has been so hectic!

Here is some Tack for you to critique on your own. I promise your regular programming will return soon!

Monday, April 13, 2009


Well, it's Monday. My least favorite day of the week. I apologise for not posting Friday, I was super busy and didn't have time.

Today I bring you a selection of very unattractive synthetic saddles. One is black and PURPLE, one is RED and black, the other is black and tan. The red and black one is not TOO bad, but I am not sure I would use it, the black and tan one is tolerable, but the black and fake purple ostrich print trimmed one is terrible.
The little silver hearts don't help much.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

There are no words...

Thanks to Rebecca who sent me this. These are spur straps available from Rod's, and are very possibly some of the most hideous things I have ever laid eyes on. I hate the acid washed hair on cowhide, it looks like they had some sort of horrific skin disease. To add such "lovely" color to them does not help this effect. Here are a few preview pics, you can go to the site if you dare and see even more.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


Cut-n-Jump sent me this saddle. She found it while searching for a new saddle for her husband. It is called the "Old Pro". I have to admit that it may be one of the strangest shaped saddles I have ever seen. It really doesn't even look very comfy, unless you are rail skinny and have no butt to speak of (I know MINE would never fit in the seat "pocket"). I would feel like I was riding uphill all the time. I am sure this saddle has a purpose, but is sure is odd looking.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Scary Bit of the Week

Today's bit is a lovely little number. It features a TEENY twisted wire gag mouthpiece, long shanks, and lots of leverage. What makes me sad is that this is what is commonly used on my breed, the TWH. Look in any TWH magazine or on You Tube and you can find them. I have seen stuff like this be used on 2 year olds! TWO! They are BABIES. They have these huge guys on them, they are so weighted down their pool little legs are shaking and these guys are hanging onto the bit. Of course they also have huge stacks and chains on too, but that is a whole different post. I just hate things like this. WHY do people think it is OK to use something like this on a baby? Or any horse for that matter? GAH!

Monday, April 6, 2009

It's all about accessories...

Well, you bought your new Barbie pink saddle, so now it's time to accessorize!! Here are some things that you might need...

Of course you will need a bridle. Here is a lovley pink number to match that pink English saddle from the first post.

Oh, and you will need polo wraps, here are some in pink leopard print ones.

For those speed events, here are some fringed sport boot covers to disguise those non-matching black boots.

To add to the overall effect, here are some nice bell boots, in leopard print to match those polos.

You will also need some stirrup irons. The pair in the middle would do nicely.

Oh, and let's not forget stall accessories. You will need a haybag, and I have found you one in a nice pink "ghetto-flauge".

Enough pink for you? Are your eyes burning as badly as mine yet?

Friday, April 3, 2009

Friday - What is your favorite tack item?

Today I want to know what YOUR favorite tack item/piece of equipment is.

Mine is my Natural Ride. It gives me the best of both worlds, the convenience of a saddle without the obstruction of one. I HATE not being to feel what my horse is going to do. I ride a 4 year old Silly Red Filly (henceforth referred to as the SRF) who is very dramatic about such things as signs on the side of the road, plastic bags, monsters in the bushes, or whatever she decides to be dramatic about that particular day. I like to be able to feel her back tense up before the inevitable *SNORT, slam all four feet to the ground and LOOK at it* that TWHs tend to do. However, I like the fact that the rigid wither piece and stirrups give me some stability if she decides that whatever monster she sees IS going to eat her and scoots to the side.

So, what do you like? Is there a favorite saddle, bit, saddle pad or something that you just LOVE?

The SRF at three. Yes, I know she is not a perfect model horse, but I love her and she can RACK as fast as the LBF (Large Black Filly) can canter!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Return of the Two-Tone

Another two-toned saddle for you! Sadly, I almost kinda like this one. It sort of reminds me of Henna artwork. If the whole thing was leather, it didn't have the beige edging, and the seat were darker, I might would be interested.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

OT Very Disturbing

Apparently horses in Miami/Dade Co. Florida are being stolen, butchered on the side of the road, and the meat sold on the black market.

Link to news story.

The Horse article

WARNING: Photos in slide show on news story link are graphic.