2009 News Archive

Stables in Alberta face many challenges in today's economic and demographic climates. Our increasingly urban population creates land use issues for horse facilities, and legislation can impact the stable's ability to operate. Competition for the public's leisure dollar is great with many activities competing for the time and finances of the population. Public expectations of animal welfare are on the increase and understanding of our industry is key to ensuring that stables are viewed favourably.


Pam Asheton, www.pamasheton.ca

A first in my lifetime with the four-leggeds, this spring had me totally "blobbily" unfit. Whiplashed (and concussed yet again) last year in a pathetically idiotic accident, it's taken months for ligaments and soft tissue to stop creaking. Unlike the majority of equestrians, who use just riding and heaving bales around to 'keep fit', skiing and hiking slithered into my middle years -  and when April roared in and out and my fitness barometer steep spring hike to the base of my favourite spirit mountain known as Yamnuska wasn't possible, man was I annoyed.


Weather-wise, it was one of the more civilized times that dressage coach extraordinaire Ruth Koch has visited the Calgary area. Hailing from south of Ottawa, where her Oxford Ridge Stable brings about many great dressage riders and horses, I’m sure she’s used to the cold. However, the weather has never stopped her from delivering some of the most developmental one-on-one riding clinics I have had the opportunity to take part in.


There was no sign of a global recession at the Olds Ag Society grounds on May 1 & 2 when the Wild Rose Draft Horse Association held its annual sale. This sale is known for its country fair atmosphere and a record crowd turned out to enjoy the event. The tack, harnesses and equipment sold very well with the Dennis Gibb vintage carriage collection a sale favourite. Another popular add-on was the Heart Mountain Shires production sale attracting buyers from across the continent. The top selling Shire was a mare who sold for $18,750. The general sale saw a total of 105 horses through the ring including 28 teams, both purebred and part-bred, all nicely trained and turned out, and all selling well. 
April's Working Cowboy Horse Sale and Competition in Vermilion sold all 44 head consigned for a sale average of $4,300, a $700 increase over last year's sale.

Horse enthusiasts and professionals alike agree that horses’ feet are their lifeline. Without them they are just expensive pasture ornaments. One of the most important things you can do as a horse owner or rider is to properly maintain a horse’s feet and this will involve finding a farrier.



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