Comparison of responsible and not-so-responsible breeders

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I agree also, Bluerogue. I showed various breeds of dogs and horses, for over fifty years. My daughter also showed her animals. We no longer show and very seldom breed. Hopefully though, we could still pick out a show quality or horse with decent conformation, over one who is not show or breed-worthy. We do a few parades and the occasional fair. If we present horses at fairs, it is not to show, but only these days, to bring attention to the breed/s and hand out eductional literature and answer questions.

Thinking about it, there are probably more really good, top quality horses out there, who are never shown, over the relatively small numbers who are.

Regarding showing and politics. I would never try to put anyone off, from showing their animals. However, to show in halter, one must obviously have the best quality animal one can possibly afford, grooming must be perfect and the animal trained properly. Pro handlers often win purely because the animal is groomed to perfection and trained to stack and not be jumping around and out of control. It's not usually just because the judge recognises the person on the other end of the lead. And of course, the trainer/handler, most usually also has his/her pick of many of the best quality animals presented to him/her.

Before wasting money to show, I think it's best for new owners or novices, to seek out the opinion of someone very knowledgeable in the breed, to see if that person thinks the horse is show quality or worth showing. It saves newcomers much heartache to have a mentor who will honestly evaluate their horse and give good advice. And we must be prepared, if asking for advice and critiques, to take that advice to heart and in the spirit in which it was given. I don't see it on this forum, but in many all-breed forums, we constantly see people asking for advice and/or critiques. When solid advice and information is given, many become very upset and confrontational, and obviously will go their own way regardless. It is human nature I think, to not want others to say things about our animals, which we don't want to hear.

I show very limited. To much politics and not the best atmospere. Most folks stick to themselves or their buddies, and a lot of folks talk crap about each other. I also noticed if someone dosnt like someone for whatever reason, now nobody likes that person even if they never met them. And if you win... oh you better watch out cause the others who are rude to others get really nasty. God forbid if ya win over them!
I remeber once yrs ago, I was approced by a club member and was told that I have no buisness being there and showing my horses cause I dont take showing seriously. SERIOUSLY! I look at it as I go for fun, and their right, I dont take it real seriously. I dont even really condition my horses or practice with them, just pull them from the pasture, clean them up, and go! Its my money and Ill spend it however I want. Their my horses and if I want to show them, I will. Its open to all members and AMHR members, so nah! 2 summers ago, I did make a HUGE mistake by bringing a couple of slightly under weight mares to a show after they had gotten into some poison nightshade...BIG MISTAKE THERE! Should have taken the $300+ loss and never went. That was my fault and a poor judgement on my behafe as I was a lil barn blind to the weight issue, BUT OH boy did the folks at the show really lay into me about that one! Only a couple of very sincer folks contacted me after the show and gave me some advice and words of encouragment to keep a chin up. Because of them few,I will be heading back again this year and not really looking forward to being around such a negitive crowd, BUT I want to go and have fun and not going to let them keep me from doing so!

I think my next journay will be showing netherland dwarf bunnys!
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MindyLee-I have an old boy a little on the heavier-boned side, like your stallion. He is an Iowas Little Kernel son and up there in age. I don't breed him much-he has the neatest personality, we all just love him to death here. I would geld him, but instead of taking those risks since he is in his 20's, he babysits my weanlings and yearlings and is a wonderful ice breaker for children that aren't quite sure about the horses. You just can't help but love him. Anyway, his daughters are really lovely! His colts stay small and on the medium build side, but they have his awesome personality so we geld them and they are the best youth show horses/companions you could ask for. His daughters stay tall, leggy, and refined, AND you really can not beat the heads that he puts on those fillies. I am using his daughters to cross with my appaloosas and they have just been amazing. I'll post a few pictures to show.

Here is Rocket-not the best picture, but all I have:

Some daughters:

Another terrible picture




And my favorite is this mare:


And the mare's 2011 near leopard colt (legs not shaved)


Now how many would expect those pretty, leggy fillies coming from old "Rocket"? I am so honored to own such a special stallion-and a dead on look alike of his sire, Iowas Little Kernel, from the pictures that I have seen of him. Anyway, I will not judge those who care for and love their horses. I still do wish that more people considered gelding most of their colts when breeding. I'll keep putting it out there when I can to see if I can persuade a few more
It's none of my business if you do or do not, however.
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Why do any of us breed minis? What are the right reasons? What are the wrong reasons? It is certainly not for money anymore. I used to think that i could have a few foals that cover my expenses. That is not going to happen. I was finding very difficult to find exactly what I wanted in a mini so there must not be enough like this. i need to make more so people like me can have them. Why breed when you can find a mini exactly like what you want for cheaper and less worry though foaling season? Do we do it because other people made lots of money on them in the past? Do we think we will too?

Standard of care seem very different for each person.

Big farms or small farms, you will see that some breeders don't think much about standard of care. Mares are left to foal in the field. illnesses are not treated. If the animal get sick, it dies or is put down. Vet bills are kept to a minimum. Hoof care is lacking. Only the very strong survive.

Standard of quality seems to be quite different among breeders too. Is it any more responsible to breed mini that will most likely go oversize, just in hopes of getting that one foal who will stay in, than breeding with other conformational flaws?

Does the mini breed need more of what each of us can offer? Are we improving the breed as a whole?

These are some questions that I ask myself every spring. I love my minis and want them to be happy and healthy. If I have foals I want them to be wanted and live a long happy life. If I produce a foal what will it chances be to have a long happy life? It will most likely out live me at this point, so what kind of life is it likely to have?

Hopefully the days are near an end when people think, "these are just animals and this is a business".

I just wanted to add... I have no control over what other people do so I try not to dwell on it too much.

Also when I tell people about my minis, a question that is often asked is, "can you make money on them?".

If you want to make money, the only ways to do it is to become a trainer or sell mini supplies. maybe some other mini related things, but not by breeding and caring for your minis.
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Also when I tell people about my minis, a question that is often asked is, "can you make money on them?".
The articles I see on homesteading and making money from backyard animals also bother me. People who purchase minis and don't think they need the same kind of care full size horses do get in over their head with farrier costs, vet bills, not to mention feed, wormers, fly control, manure control and any other of a number of things horses require to be healthy.

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