Newspaper Archive of
Pahrump Mirror
Pahrump, Nevada
July 24, 1997     Pahrump Mirror
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July 24, 1997

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C Yes, shopping for a horse can be enjoyable. It can even be free of anxiety and stress and is always informative. Following are a few tips and more. If you're ready to go shopping, you've decided what you want to accomplish with your horse. Pleasure and trail riding maybe your goal, or you may be more interested in showing. Perhaps dressage and jumping challenges you or you're eager to compete in gymkhana. You have narrowed your shopping to one or two breed types based on your riding goals and personal preference. Contact the association/registry for the breed or breeds you're interested in. Most are generous with information about the horse, breeders, trainers and shows. Videos are often available, and many associations have lists of horses offered "for sale." Most breeds have one or more magazines written exclu- sively about them. Read these. Check both articles and ads. Check other horse publications, i.e. Horse Illustrated, Horse and Rider, Equus, Western Horseman and others in the local supermarket and feed stores. Many of these magazines feature one horse breed each month, and you may find yours. You'll definitely find a lot of good useful information Fair Prices on ellres e Brakes Batteries eTune-ups eFull Service Oil Chanses on horse care, training and showing. Study conformation so you can select the horse with the physical characteristics to give you the performance you want. Principles of Con- formationAnalysis, Volumes I and II, by Deb Bennett, Ph.D. are an excellent refer- ence for every horse person. The small paperbacks are only $7.95. Learn as much as you can about the breed. Know the most desirable characteristics, color and so on. It's exciting to discover new information about the the whole truth read... horse of your dreams, and even the most experienced will find new ways to look at the horse. Go to horse shows. If you can, attend shows specific to your breed. Then attend an all-breed show to compare performance. Shows are fun. It's thrilling to see the horses perform, and provides a great opportunity to meet horse people. Most are delighted to answer questions about their horse and the breed in general. When a particular horse catches your eye, ask about its bloodlines. Ask who the breeder is. Always ask for recommendations. Make a list of farms you can visit who specialize in the breed you want. Go meet horses and the people who raise them. There are many advantages to buying from a breeding farm. You can view the facility and judge the care the horse has received. A horse bred, born and raised with optimum care has a head start to reaching its full potential. A breeding facility also gives you the opportunity to meet the family. Often, you can meet both parents and sometimes even a grandparent of the horse. You can also look at siblings. If you like the family, you're on the right track. Many times you can meet the trainer and caretakers. You can glean some valuable information about a horse's temperament from people who clean stalls and groom and exercise the horses. The trainer is a gold mine of informa- tion, but remember he/she works for the owner. You can get a lot of valid information about horses who interest you without compromising the trainer's loyalty. Owners. Do they live on the'premises? Do they super- vise the care and training of the horses? Do they ride? Are they comfortable with and knowledgeable about the ani- mals? Does the breeder show the horses? Remember proof is in performance, not a piece of paper. How does the barn rate in competition? Ask about those ribbons. Was it a local, regional, state or national show. How many horses were in the class? If the horse is a pleasure/trail horse, how often is it ridden outside the arena? Where? What kind of trails? How far? Good breeders are proud of their horses and will usu- ally have a handler show the animal under saddle. If you're buying a saddle horse, they will encourage you to ride, but only after someone at the facility has ridden first. Reputable breeders will be able to give you refer- ences: the names of the asso- ciations/registries where In-Depth Factual Coverage of the issues that affect you and your family In Nye County. they are members, names and contact information for former buyers. The name of their veterinarian and farrier. Four months ago, I purchased my first Peruvian an 11- month old colt. I was ignorant about the breed and horse trading in general. Following none of the above advise, I made an emotional decision. As a result, I've had an expen- sive education in addition to bearing the embarrassment of being a fool. Since, I have joined The Peruvian Paso Horse Registry of North America (PPHRNA) and obtained volumes of information from them. I also subscribe to four publications which feature the Peruvian horse and have made a consid- erable investment in books and tapes. All help me as I try to be a responsible handler for my horse, Zapata. Most of all, I am better prepared as I venture out to buy my second Peruvian. In contrast to my first experience, I am really enjoying shopping for my future horse. I recently made two trips to Santa Maria, Calif., where I had the opportunity to meet breeders and to be a guest at a Peruvian show and sale followed by a delightful Santa Maria BBQ. I met a number of aficionados, owners, breeders and a well known trainer from Peru. All were gracious and eager to share information about the special breed they love. During both trips I spent a full day just looking at and photographing Peruvian Paso horses. In an unhurried atmo- sphere, accompanied by a friend who has expert horse knowledge, I observed the horses. When I expressed an interest, I was able to see them move and where appropriate view them under saddle. The day of the show and sale, I became better ac- quainted with people I had met during my two looking days. I met new people. Some were satisfied buyers who turned out to be excellent references. Several breeders furnished printed sales lists describing the horse, usually accompanied by a photo and a price list. Never, was there any pressure to "buy now" or make a decision on the spot. I don't want to waste my expensive education, so I am determined to force myself to be patient and make the best informed decision possible. But, to be truly honest, I saw so many beautiful, outstanding animals it's difficult to decide. Price is certainly a factor, but I want to buy the best horse I can afford. And, good sense or not, I'll have to have that feeling deep in my gut that says, "Yes, this is the horse." The photographs are a great help. I pour over the ones of the couple of horses I most admire. I continue to learn as I view them running free in pasture, on the lead and under saddle. I'm planning to attend a few more shows and meet more of these people who have so far been so gracious. I can hardly believe it. I'm shopping for a horse, and I' m enjoying it. ILIP Serving all of Pahrump, ye, _ New Hours Tues, Wed. & Thurs .... 9a.m. to 7p.m. Friday ................ 9a.m. to 5p.m. Saturday .............. lla.m, to 5p.m. Closed Sunday & Monday ii  , 1 FOR SALE- Trainer German Baca shows "Chacota," a four year old mare, to a propective buyer at C & H Peruvians in Santa Maria, CA. photo by Patti Babcock