Tuesday, February 16, 2016

"Horse's Growth ... Starting too Young"

Howdy Friends!

After a recent lengthy discussion about “issues” with a horse I was again re-enforced in my belief in the work/teachings and wisdom of Peggy Cummings, I learned from my mentor Diane Sept. Her groundwork, exercises and posture correctness is indeed the single best route to a healthy, happy equine partner—it is the reason I’m so devoted and encouraged to help folks learn and understand how to master them. This chart indicates the growth patterns and maturity of the skeletal system of horses. It has long been my experience and belief that most, if not all, “issues” with horses are pain, discomfort or confusion driven. Many of these “hidden” issues were caused years earlier by horses started under saddle too young, and show up later. Helping the horse find correct posture, freedom of movement is, in my belief, the very best thing we can do for our horses.

Gitty Up, Dutch.


  1. Absolutely, Dutch! IMHO, starting too young is the number one cause of early-onset arthritis. If we could just convince the big-name trainers of this, think of the new longer, healthier lifespan we could expect from horses. Parelli, Clinton Anderson, Monty Roberts, most (if not all) of the Road to the Horse competitors, they're all guilty of being in an all-fired hurry. Time is money, shortcuts make it easier for the human, and egos are too dang big to allow any other way than the way they've always done it. The horse looks ready on the outside at two years old, so it must be ready.

    I am SO glad you posted this! I've been sharing "The Ranger Piece" for over a decade. It should be required reading for every horse owner and potential horse owner, trainer, riding instructor, breeder, show judge, farrier, barefoot trimmer, vet and vet techs, race track owner, and every other equine-affiliated human being.
    Just click on "The Ranger Piece" in the left margin:

    I tend to get a wee bit overzealous on this topic, sorry ☺

    Best regards to you and your beautiful Ravishing Robbie!

    1. There ya go, Robynne! Folks need to understand it is a better way to put the horse first.

    2. and yes Robynne, that piece "The Ranger Piece" should be read by every "horse-person" ... On a side not, I put the racing industry (and some others) in the same category as those who sore TWHs ...

    3. Oh, most certainly. The poor TBs are started under saddle and running as early as 14-18 months!
      I failed to give credit for the skeletal maturation piece, it's by the brilliant Dr Deb Bennett.

      Dutch, thank you for always putting the horse first, and showing us ways to do it. God bless you, my friend.