What to Do if a Dog is Chasing You

I took a walk one morning with a few of my friends. We were in our neighborhood and I brought my dog, Denver, along because he needed exercise too. About 15 minutes into our walk, one of my friends nervously proclaimed, “There’s a dog off-leash over there.” And sure enough, I looked up to see a pitbull mix, off-leash, staring at us. As soon as we noticed him, he began to race towards us.  Immediately, my friends’ nervous anxiety turned to full panic.  They screamed as I told them not to worry.  They grabbed my arm as I told them…

[VIDEO] Dog Park Concept Fly-in

Dog Parks in Australia Australia has one of the highest pet ownership rates in the world with 36% of households owning a dog (Australian Companion Animal Council, 2010). Pets play important roles in our lives. Research shows they can help improve a person’s mental and physical health, reduce the effects of stress, facilitate social interaction and can help build a sense of community. With backyards becoming smaller and a shift to more compact living (i.e. apartment living) there is a need to better plan for our pets (particularly dogs) within cities including: pet friendly local streets, public parks and urban precincts. Dog Parks and…

[VIDEO] Stories of Greatness: Boyd Martin, Three-Day Eventer

If you haven’t heard the Boyd and Silva Martin story yet, get a cup of tea and a box of tissues ready.  Boyd grew up in Australia and moved to the states to pursue his career as an professional event rider, and took up citizenship with the USA.  He’s now a regular USA Team member at international competitions, including the most recent Olympics. This video was created by the Martin’s sponsors, Purina, and tells an inspiring story of perseverance, dedication, talent and love.  Enjoy!

What’s Happened to Good Horsemanship?

By Ross Jacobs Most of my clinics are attended by people with a wide range of experience and interests. As well as many amateur and occasional riders I often meet very experienced horse people at my clinics. Many have been riding most of their life. Some have even competed successfully at a high level in various disciplines. I get a smattering of trainers from various horse sports. A few have been judges in various disciplines such as dressage or jumping, reining, halter breed classes etc. These are people will a lot of experience and many skills in their chosen field.…

The Beginning of the End?

By Minna Talberg If I were a media strategist, I would have done it on purpose. Adelinde Cornelissen couldn’t have hoped for better luck than the [false] rumour spreading like wildfire: That her horse Parzival had suffered a hairline fracture to the jaw which caused the need for the rider to pull up in the middle of the Grand Prix in Rio.

[VIDEO] Life After Racing

“Wastage” is the term used to describe the number of horses exiting the racing industry, either before or after their actual racing career.  It’s a sticking point for the industry, and one reason why it often comes under fire from activists and welfare groups.  There are a large number of re-homing and re-training professional or not for profit organisations who are devoted to reducing this number. It’s great that these organisations are there, and that the racing industry is involved in supporting them.  Here’s a story from the famous Godolphin stables in the UK about how they are actively approaching…

Equestrian Sport has a Marketing Problem

I came across this article on social media this week, and as it’s a topic we’ve discussed here on FourPlusTwo before (“Why is Marketing Equestrian Sports so Damn Hard?”) I wanted to share the link here for you guys as well. HorseNetwork is a great blog site, and not afraid of asking the harder questions! They did a great interview with retired media-relations expert Jayne Huddleston to ask what it’ll take for horse sport to break the mainstream media barrier.

Unconscious Incompetence and Wilful Ignorance

I was recently talking to a life coach about an interesting theory known as the four stages of competence. A subject highly related to the practice of horsemanship. I won’t go into great details here about all the stages of competence, but want to focus specifically on the first stage – Unconscious Incompetence. Every horseperson goes through this stage at the start of their journey. But the tragedy is that a great majority of horse people (amateur horse owners as well as professional trainers and instructors) will never actually leave this stage.

Is Equestrian Sport Ready to be Disrupted?

When my daughters expressed an interest in ponies I couldn’t believe my luck. Ah wonderful, a way to live my dreams vicariously through my children! You see I have always been fascinated by horses & the relationship some humans have with them. As a child I had riding lessons once a week, but my brother’s serious chronic heart condition and consequent death rendered any dreams of being one of those “horsey girls” defunct. Life kind of fell apart. Anyway, despite some difficult times, my love for horses continued and I took great solace in those darker days spending time in…

[VIDEO] Reconstructing the Dressage Horse

More from FourPlusTwo contributor, Shelley Appleton of Appleway Performance Horses.  This is a great case study video sharing the journey Shelley went on working with one of her clients.  If you enjoyed our previous discussion on ethical horse training, you’re going to really enjoy this one. – Ed.