Mark’s FAQ’s 2018-12-06T10:01:58+00:00

Mark’s FAQs

I would like to know if my horse has good conformation. Can you tell me?

It is hard to give an evaluation from some pics on the computer. It apears that she is very straight legged and has no obvious faults. I would not put her in a halter class, but then most performance horses would not go in the halter anyway. If I were to fault her, I would like to see her neck a little longer. If she rides good, then I would not be so concerned with her conformation. Some or the best horses I have ridden have had the worst conformation.

Hi, My friends have a horse named Chicklet. They are trying to train her to jump.They have gotten her started, but I was wandering if you have any suggestions on helping her more. She usually won’t go over without another horse and bucks and rears a lot. Do you have any suggestions?

Tristan, Your friend should hire a professional trainer before she gets hurt.

What advantages do Romal reins have in the show ring? Are they acceptable in western pleasure and horsemanship?

Yes we use both Romals and splits. I usually only use the Romals in the trail and western riding events. The pleasure and horsemanship classes work out better with split reins. You can use the Romals in the pleasure and horsemanship, however it works out best to use the splits. Years ago, Romals were the standard, especially out west. The Romals work best for trail because you can maneuver through obstacles and still keep a reasonably loose rein. Going through gates is easier, and it makes showing some horses easier with the steering. Romals work fine in the western riding especially on green horses where you might need a little more contact with the reins and horses face. It is all up to the exhibitor in what they feel comfortable with. Both look great, and how they feel and look with the horse is a personal preference, and both look great even on older well broke horses. The only problem I have with people using Romals, is when they do not know how to hold them. Your rein hand is thumbs up making a fist with no fingers between the reins. The Mecate, or tail end goes in your other hand and lays quietly on your leg. The Mecate end should not be held up higher unless you are doing cow horse or reining. Make sure you read up on all the rules for holding and adjusting rein length in the different classes. In reining, you can not slip or slide up the Romals. In trail and western riding, it is permissible. You can find out all the rules in the AQHA rulebook. These are the best guidelines to go by.

She hates applause and cheering, how do I get her to overcome this fear so we can get her shown?

I have had some of the same problems in the past with a couple of horses I was training. The only thing that I found that works is to find as many indoor arenas that you can take her to, and ride her in them. If you have access to an arena where you can play loud music or some sort of noise on the loud speakers, that works the best. She just will have to get used to it that way. If you do not have access to an indoor arena where you can do this, you might always have problems. I have found that if they are exposed to something enough, that they will get over it.

He was started as a 2 year old, sent to a trainer as a 3 year old and then his owner lost interest and turned him out for nearly 2 years. He has been sold twice and both times his new owners have not worked with him on his pleasure training, so now he is 8, has a super trot, good lope, though not collected and slow and headset doesn’t come around until he’s worked down in a lope. At a trot, head drops level naturally. Is it too late to send him to a trainer to get him finished for showing? I think he has a great deal of potential and it is a shame for a horse of this caliber not to enter a show ring.

Hi Shelly, you can train horses at anytime in their lives. It is just that we all start early to get them going to the futurities, shows, races, trail and riding horses, etc… Just make sure that you get the right trainer and explain the situation to them. Follow along with his progress and be a part of his education. Good luck with your new project

I have a 13-year old registered Paint who is just awesome. The farm where I board him had a large outdoor arena where I often work him. Recently he’s developed the habit of refusing to walk through the gate into the arena (while I’m riding). Sometimes he goes through just fine, and other times he plants his front feet, backs up sideways and pins my leg against the arena gate (not enough to hurt me, but enough to prevent me from using it at all). Since this doesn’t happen all of the time, I believe it’s an attitude thing. I’ve tried several different tactics with not much success. Any ideas on how to handle this? Thank you!

Reannon, This is a simple fix. You need to go back to basics and teach him how to sidepass properly. Take him in the arena and get him to sidepass, and two track off of your legs in both directions. Make sure you spend a lot of time getting him to respond with just a little bit of pressure from your legs. Make sure that he is even off both sides from pressure. Then take him back to the gate and make him work it using the same methods that you used earlier. If he still is resistant, then a good smack on the butt with the bridle reins can do wonders.

I wrote you a while ago about my 4 year old paint horse, now 5 out of Dirti Rocki. I ended up taking him to a well known paint trainer N of Orlando. Anyways..just so you know he is a wiz at trail and has never been happier. And as soon as we just got back to horsemanship and remembering to ride..everything came together and he just started skating a long the arena..of course there were a few battles..but he was nothing but a gentleman and thanks for the great was right on the money!

Hi Kate, glad it worked out for you. There are many classes out there. Pleasure is just one of them. Glad you found some that best fit your horse.

Hi, I just recently got my first horse. He came to me through one of my close friends who’s mom had got him from one of her friends. I don’t know if you’re going to be able to help me on this issue but, the woman that my friend’s mom got him from, has a problem with the lady who’s barn I’m baording him at. They have some past history when it comes to horse matters and do not get along. Recently I went to the original owners house and politely asked for his registration papers because I was hoping to show him this year in the county fair. Well it turns out she had a buyer lined up for him if I hadn’t taken him. You see I got him for free. And she is still a little bitter about losing money on him and refuses to give up his papers. I was just wondering if maybe you had any suggestions for me. Thank you, Katana.

Unfortunately if you do not have the registration papers in your hands with the signed transfer along with it,… are not the official owner of the horse. I get this mail all the time if you read some of my other posts. The registration papers on a horse are no different than the title on your car. I never buy a horse unless I receive the papers and transfer report that goes along with the animal. Your best bet is to contact the breed association that he is registered with, and if that does not pan out, you have no choice but to contact an attorney to get those papers in your name. I hope you at least have a bill of sale or transfer of ownership in writing of some sort. Good luck, and I hope things work out for you.

I need your advice. We have a 8 month old colt (male) who is still nursing. We were checking into having the colt boarded for weaning for a month and then back home. We only have the Mare and colt, no other horses. I have also read articles on ezee-wean halter which allows the Mare and colt to be together during weaning and not the anxiety for both of them. What is your opinion on this. Also any information on when to have him fixed. thank you

Hi Patsy, You need to wean him now. You are letting him stay on the mare twice as long as he should be. Do not bother with any gimmicks on weaning. Put him in one pen, and the mare in another pen. Now is also the time to castrate him.