Monday, July 14, 2008

Tell us about your local rescues

We get numerous calls asking for information and/or referrals about/to TB and all breed rescues and potential retirement options outside of our immediate locale.
While there are organizations I do suggest  based on  positive personal knowledge, I'd like to hear from those who can speak to both the positive and negative in their locales. Please email me @


The OTTB and Trail Riding

Once an OTTB is going reasonably well in the arena, then it may be time to to assess what they know of, or think about, the world outside.
TB's at the track have seen, and know, quite a bit: But, they know it in a very controlled context, and, that context revolves wholly around them. 
There are few variables to the track routine, and everyone involved knows the rules.  
I've all too often seen the unhappy  results from humans who presume that 
any  OTTB who has raced past a packed and noisy grandstand, totally focused, at speed, enroute to the finish line should inherently possess the slightest clue about  uneducated and unrestrained vehicle traffic on a public road, or  immediately figure out and enjoy a leisurely trail ride, at a walk, on unmaintained surfaces, whether solo or  in dubious equine company.
Most American TB's have no experience with being ridden out, over roads or trails, when being started prior to beginning their racing careers. Some few do, and  that is truly wonderful. I think it helps promote a thinking and ratable horse.
Nonetheless, to start  OTTBs' riding out, it's easiest and quickest to begin  acclimating the OTTB to going down the road if one can employ an unflappable tour guide: The OTTB is already used to a pony horse. We are very grateful to a neighbor with just such a dear quarter horse mare who imparts her experience, wisdom and confidence to the green or unsure TB.
This is a process: It takes as long as it takes. 
Some TB's  NEVER really care for  the world outside; they view it as a scary punishment rather than as a relaxing reward. If so, then  we don't go there. Yet, those same TBs can still excel as stellar performers in the arena.