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    Fertility in stallions and age

    I've noticed a tendency for horses to be considered "old" at a much younger age these days. So what about the age of a working stallion? The usual reference books are no help. I have bred pedigree livestock (sheep, dogs, horses) for a few decades and age in a sire is always to good thing. Nature...
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    Vet practices taken over by big business

    Probably of general interest so posting here rather than in veterinary. My vets have been taken over by one of the large vet groups and it seems to me that fees for a routine surgical operations have escalated. I could be wrong but as it seems to be impossible to compare prices so I don't...
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    More sheep worrying and £12,000 fine

    Please pass this around. Dog owner fined £12,000 for horrific sheep worrying incident and no doubt a civil claim to follow. Perhaps if there are more fines like this, people will start to learn about dog training and ownership before they buy a pup...
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    Endo tap?

    Anyone use it? Or tried it? I am a great believer in the old super market carrier bag on the end of a long stick for desensitising and rather than stroking, I started tapping. I noticed an improvement over the usual stroking..... Then I discovered that tapping is actually used as a form of...
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    Why pat?

    Can you explain to me why you pat your horses? Patting a dog simulates the sensation of being tapped by a wagging tail. That is entirely logical. But why pat horses? I just don't get it! Patting is totally alien to a horse! I am not a hugger, but if I decided to indulge in social bodily...
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    Yearling with swollen back tendon on fore

    I have the farrier coming tomorrow to look at a lame yearling. I've just been out to check her and the hoof seems OK but I noticed the tendon behind the foreleg is quite swollen. Any clues so I don't worry until morning? I don't think she has caught it on anything but might have had a kick...
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    Tempting a foal

    What do foals crave for? I have two aged three months. Both were a bit slow allowing me to handle them (busy farm, short on time) but one is now hooked on scratches and taking small pieces of carrot. Yes, I know time is the answer, but is there anything they go nuts for? Just ruminating really...
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    Pony from Scotland to Norway. Anyone done it?

    I've had an enquiry for a Highland pony (weaned foal) to go from the north of Scotland to Norway. Anyone done it? I'm assuming it has to be done via the tunnel, then Denmark, etc. but I really don't have a clue. Gillies and John Parker? Just thought I'd ask here first. Anyone?
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    Height/weight limits when selling?

    Recently, I've had people come to look at a pony that is obviously too small for them. Do you just sell to the first who has the money or do you refuse those who are obviously too big? I recently had a husband and wife team view a 13.3HH lightly built 4yo Highland pony. The wife, at 5'3"...
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    Horse nervous of being followed

    We have a spooky pony. He was bought in with quirks. His ground work is good so someone has clearly done this work with him. He'll lead over plastic, over a pallet, over ply wood, load, etc. and someone has obviouly done a lot of work with him, but he was then sold on. But we are occasionally...
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    Mongol bits?

    I was watching Mongol horsemen in the TV Travel channel the other evening and it looked as if some ponies were being ridden bitless, so I did a bit of research. Not bitless, but some odd shaped bits which in some cases extended out the side of the horse's mouth by several inches. Do a Google in...
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    Liking the round pen?

    I've noticed my ponies actually seem to like going into the round pen. Can't think why as that's where they find work and having to do what they are told! But there seems to be no doubt about it. I'd also expect some resentment after being worked, but quite the opposite. They show their...
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    Small breeder insurance

    I need to get quotes for what I broadly think would be small holder's insurance. I am retired and now just breed 2 or 3 foals a year on 30 acres as a hobby. These are mostly sold as 4yo's so a total of 12 ponies including youngstock. I also have occasional unpaid help. Basically, I suspect I...
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    Seed mixes for native ponies

    I regularly grumble about seed mixes recommended by seeds merchants tor ponies which would be better suited to fattening bullocks, so was quite pleased to see this one. Not perfect, but getting there! (And, no, I have no connection with the firm whatsoever)...
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    Spookiness and peck order?

    I am wondering if being low in the peck order tends to make a horse more nervous in the herd? I have one that is quite jumpy to sudden movements and I'm considering moving him to field with a couple of youngsters. Anyone had any experiences of this? He is currently in a mixed herd of nine, all ages.
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    Flooding? Sign this to get something done!
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    New guard dog

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    Tough love?

    We have a problem child. Or rather a problem 4yo Highland gelding. Briefly, born on the hill in a large herd, bought and started on ground work by first owner at two, sold on a couple of years later (owner got divorced) to new owners. Bought by me as a project after a few months in that...
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    Panicking pony

    I bought a 4yo Highland gelding back in June that is inclined to have what I can only describe as panic attacks. He is a total contrast to our home breds! He was purchased from the breeder off the hill at 2 from a large herd, then sold on at 4 due to the owner's personal circumstances. After...
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    Sales livery? Pros and cons?

    I've heard it mentioned but wonder how it works? Anyone used it and what are the pros and cons?
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    This obsolete forum software!

    My usual rant. I cleaned out my browser's cache the other day and now have to log on every time I want to browse the forum. Yes, I've ticked the little box to store my password and my Mac also (allegedly) stores it too. I am also getting a bit fed up with having to hit 'back' three times to go...
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    Over height Highland....foal!

    We measured our five month old filly foal the other day AND SHE IS 12HH ALREADY! Is this a record?? :) The photo has not been photoshopped!
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    Do they really want to BUY the horse?

    Well, we've had the "Do they really want to sell the horse?", so I thought I'd turn the tables and have a grumble from the seller's point of view! Do some buyers imagine we are selling because we need the money and will sell regardless of the type of home on offer? Do they think we don't care...
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    Disturbance from clay pigeon shooting?

    Not sure if this is in the right section, but here goes! Can anything be done about clay pigeon shooting just over the hedge from grazing horses? I am not anti-shooting but am anti-inconsiderate neighbours. I have one of the latter! :( What's more, he is on steroids which increases aggression...
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    Speaking horse!

    No, not anthromorphising, nor even natural horsemanship, but simply interpreting horse body language. Because I'm old, I get the help of young people to do the energetic stuff like riding. The fun stuff, like training from the ground, I like to get involved in. I have the help of a very...
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    Saddles in a breaking yard?

    How do you manage? I just have a few youngsters to break but the girls are always grumbling that the saddles don't fit. The latest visitor to advise kindly demonstrated a correct fit and I'm assured it would only cost around £400 to buy a s/h saddle like hers that would be perfect for the...
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    Horsequest Online Advertising Form

    Yep, another moan from me! But I live in the hope that by complaining, things will improve. Doubtful, but possible. My moan is even more ironic because Horsequest were spamming me with discounts off advertising charges only last week! OK, I filled out their on-line form (god, I hate forms!)...
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    The "For Sale" video: What do you want to see?

    As title really. Walk, trot, canter -- presumably. Jumping. Loading. Having feet lifted, Tacking up…. What am I missing? A picture speaks a thousand words and all that stuff! "Good in all paces" doesn't quite cover it, does it?
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    Crumbling hooves

    The subject of disintegrating hooves has come up elsewhere. The horse owner moved about a year ago and now her horse's hooves are in bad shape. Shoes aren't staying on and the farrier's bills are adding up. Thinking about it, much the same thing happened after I bought a new horse, but they came...
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    "No good turn goes unpunished"

    So, have you been punished lately and what for? Come on, someone must feel worse than me! :D