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  1. #61
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    I always thought the real purpose of a spur stop was so that you could do other things with your hands... like, y'know, rope, which was what western riders did before WP (note: I am not denigrating WP, but, just like hunters O/F, it came from a more, ah, functional root).

    I rode horses with spur stops for years (some Arabs have a spur stop), and, although it was confusing for me to learn at first (and perhaps for the horse), I didn't find it abusive. There's obviously a difference between booting your horse in the side with the spurs, and bumping him for a spur stop, just like there is a difference between gently pulling back on the reins to halt and hauling @$$ on the horse's mouth to stop (as Arelle noted).

    I have seen abuse in every circuit I have ridden on -- hunters, jumpers, eq horses, Saddlebreds/hackneys, and Arabs (interestingly, I have seen the least abuse with SBs... contrary to what many people on this board seem to think, not every SB trainer abuses their horses). I've never been a part of the AQHA circuit but I don't think it is special in that abusers are part of it, and even in that abusers are often not only ignored, but celebrated.

    Time and time again, in every circuit, trainers get busted, banned, or even arrested for abusing the horses that are supposed to be under their care. But people keep bringing horses to them. It really goes to show that some people just want to win, and forget that, at the end of the day, it is an animal, not a car or boat. If you are a client you can vote with your wallet and send your horses elsewhere, but you can't really prevent other people from doing it.

    I wish people who did these things to horses would be publicly shamed -- at least post what they did, maybe even including pictures, on the showgrounds. Then, instead of having it be rumors and hearsay, people might say "you're training with her?!" As a former eq rider who used to have not only my stirrups, but my girth taken away, I believe firmly in the power of embarrassment



  2. #62
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    Well, I've never done it, but it seems fairly simple to me. Touch with spurs, say whoa, sit down and pull back on reins. Wash, rinse, repeat until horsie stops at sit down, give pat, repeat until horsie stops at whoa, give pat, repeat until horsie stops at tap with spurs, give pat.

    Kicking holes in the horse isn't any kind of training, obviously, it's a @#%$#%%@# losing her temper and abusing the poor horse.
    Holy crap, how does Darwin keep missing you? ~Lauruffian



  3. #63
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    Apr. 18, 2010
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    Quote Originally Posted by vixen View Post
    I rode horses with spur stops for years (some Arabs have a spur stop), and, although it was confusing for me to learn at first (and perhaps for the horse), I didn't find it abusive. There's obviously a difference between booting your horse in the side with the spurs, and bumping him for a spur stop, just like there is a difference between gently pulling back on the reins to halt and hauling @$$ on the horse's mouth to stop (as Arelle noted).
    Thanks for your entire post, but I wanted to single this point out and just reitterate that the use of spurs varies from english to western. A horse with a spur stop is not trained that spur means forward, it is trained that spur means stop.

    It's a pain to learn - and yes, it's confusing for a rider. But it is not abusive in most cases. Or as a practice.
    Veni vidi vici. With a paint pony, nonetheless.



  4. #64
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    The idea of a "spur stop" as being "contradictory" is only contradictory if you don't normally halt your horse properly.
    If you think about how you do a good "stop" without spurs, you drive the horse forward with your driving aids into a restrictive seat/ hand and the horse comes to a good, collected halt. Thus adding in the spur to the stop makes total sense- touching the horse's side lightly in the correct place is supposed to activate a reflex that causes the horse to engage its hind end so the horse is ready and able to stop/go/spin, whatever you want, in response to what the rest of your body/aids say. So touching the horse with your spur before stopping makes total sense. And thus in a well-trained finished refined western horse, where you want the aids to be at a minimum, you gradually fade out the rest of the aids as you continue working and refining the horse's training.

    Note "touch", not "kick giant hole". I doubt kicking painful holes in the horse does anything towards activating the "collection" reflex, more likely it activates the "run away" reflex.



  5. #65
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    Ok, I get the "spur stop:. Now for my next dumb question: How do western riders make their horses go forward? If applying pressure to their sides makes them stop, what prompts them to "go"?



  6. #66
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    Mar. 23, 2006
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    tapping with your legs = forward. Squeeze = stop

    that and vocal cues.
    Only two emotions belong in the saddle: One is a sense of humor. The other is patience.



  7. #67
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    Quote Originally Posted by StGermain View Post
    I think if you start young enough, you can accustom the horse to anything, so they don't fight back. Spurring until bloody? Sure. The horse has never known anything else. And gets even more "correction" when he fights back, until he learns not to. Just like stewarding a TWH.

    Any time money and reputation are on the line, people will take just that one little step that they might not otherwise. And little steps lead to giant leaps. And these incremental changes sneak up on you. I remember reading once that Charles Manson would start with his followers by asking for a cigarette. Then sharing food. And if you'll share your food, will you share my bed. And if you'll sleep with me, you'll sleep with Tex, because he's my right-hand man. Until it breaks down the ability to say no.

    I haven't read Fifty Shades of Grey, but it seems like that how the story goes - you start asking people to do something just a little out of their moral or ethical box. Once they start inching out, the next step and the next become easier. You tell yourself and the owners that "everyone does it" and "you can't win in the ring without tuning the horse up", and you're sliding that slippery slope.

    StG
    Barn rat for life

    The Big Horse



  8. #68
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    Want invisible aids in WP? Teach your horse voice commands and let him listen to the announcer, it works great

    Until the ring steward speaks too loudly into his walkie-talkie to the announcer and your horse does everything a second before the announcement
    Holy crap, how does Darwin keep missing you? ~Lauruffian



  9. #69
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    May. 21, 2012
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    I'm sorry Arelle- It's news to me. I'm shocked about it. To me spurs are a device to ask a horse to move away- either forward or laterally... I never imagined them being applied as a learned cue to produce a stop...although I see how they could be.

    I never even heard the term spurred stop until yesterday. I just googled it- and apparently there is a well established controversy already... my gut reaction as an ignorant bystander seems to be in line with the opinions of many coming from a much more educated platform.

    And of course opinions fall on both sides.



  10. #70
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    Okay, this spur stop thing. When I stopped a horse, I dropped my center of gravity, but you have to hold his barrel/body together and that's where the 'squeeze' of the rider leg comes in. The legs don't flop down on the side. The reins don't have contact on a good saddle horse and basically move just a scoche, if at all, just for the horse to feel. If the horse is attuned to the rider, he already knows the score before anyone looking. All this happens in less than a second.

    Maybe that's what is meant by spur stop. Excpet in my case, my spurs never touched the horse. Just a drop center of gravity, legs holding the barrel together and reins barely moved. Horse stopped.

    As for roping and a spur stop, I've not heard of that. I can rope just fine with reins in left hand, holding the loops and swinging with right hand and throwing. So, I don't know what that means. Still, you're not touching the horse's mouth and it's all the seat of the jeans and saddle.

    In my book, there isn't a reason, period, for flaying a horse's sided with spurs. None.
    Last edited by goneriding24; Sep. 28, 2012 at 12:37 PM. Reason: .
    GR24's Musing #19 - Save the tatas!!



  11. #71
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    And another thought, if this is what these 'trainer's think a spur stop is, flaying a horse's sides, they are too ignorant to be a trainer. I'm glad the owners outed this broad for doing this. I think this is what Cleave Wells assistant did to Slow Lopin' Scotch's side.
    Last edited by goneriding24; Sep. 28, 2012 at 12:36 PM. Reason: /
    GR24's Musing #19 - Save the tatas!!



  12. #72
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    I have a "finished" western horse. I do Horsemanship, Trail and Western Riding on him. Don't do Pleasure because he doesn't naturally want to go that slow, so I refuse to force him into being a pitty-pat mover. We do very well at the breed shows in those events. He has a spur stop, but I only use it to reinforce the whoa. It was hard for me to accept that riders in a show can give verbal commands but I say "whoa", cluck for trot, kiss to lope, etc...and it's okay. If I need a strong and immediate whoa and can feel he's going to take a step, I close my spurs and he puts it in park. It's not a kick with the spurs, it's a touch on his sides. Have never put a mark on any horse I've ridden. If I want him to slow his pace, at the jog or lope, I give a steady squeeze with my calves and he slows down. Speed up? Bump my calves against his sides.

    If you think there's outrage on this board, you should read the pages and hundreds of posts on other breed show specific forums over the abuses that have come to light. No one condones the horrendous abuse at the Reichert. No one.



  13. #73
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    Jan. 12, 2002
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    Russell, Ontario Canada
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ghazzu View Post
    I would be very surprised if the new rules were not in process well before this incident.
    From what somebody posted on another forum, they were started I believe back in March. The actual release was likely planned to come out before the World shows. This just might have sped things up a little is all.
    ~~Some days are a total waste of makeup.~~



  14. #74
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    Jun. 12, 2011
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    Elkridge, MD
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    Quote Originally Posted by goneriding24 View Post
    Okay, this spur stop thing. When I stopped a horse, I dropped my center of gravity, but you have to hold his barrel/body together and that's where the 'squeeze' of the rider leg comes in. The legs don't flop down on the side. The reins don't have contact on a good saddle horse and basically move just a scoche, if at all, just for the horse to feel. If the horse is attuned to the rider, he already knows the score before anyone looking. All this happens in less than a second.

    Maybe that's what is meant by spur stop. Excpet in my case, my spurs never touched the horse. Just a drop center of gravity, legs holding the barrel together and reins barely moved. Horse stopped.

    As for roping and a spur stop, I've not heard of that. I can rope just fine with reins in left hand, holding the loops and swinging with right hand and throwing. So, I don't know what that means. Still, you're not touching the horse's mouth and it's all the seat of the jeans and saddle.

    In my book, there isn't a reason, period, for flaying a horse's sided with spurs. None.
    Well, that was just my guess about the original purpose of the spur stop. My experience riding western has been, as you said, way more off of the leg and seat than my English-riding-experience (note: yes, yes, I know you ride off the seat and leg when riding English).

    Some of us... some of us sometimes rope with two hands.

    To sum, I was just hypothesizing that perhaps there is more emphasis on the seat and legs as with an actual working ranch horse, one or both of your hands might usually be occupied (perhaps not just roping, but also mending fences, doing whatever one does with cattle, opening/closing gates, etc etc).

    That is really beside the point, as a *properly-applied* spur stop, while alien to most English riders, is not abusive, much as a properly-applied half halt is also not abusive (although my current horse would BEG to differ )



  15. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dispatcher View Post
    Ok, I get the "spur stop:. Now for my next dumb question: How do western riders make their horses go forward? If applying pressure to their sides makes them stop, what prompts them to "go"?
    There is also the position of the leg.

    In dressage, leg applied AT the girth means GO.
    Leg applied behind the girth means, "add engagement, come up under." This is why you see everyone with their legs further back in the piaffe.

    Even just HAVING your leg in a certain position, without actually using it, can help clarify things for your horse. So if I am asking for smaller steps for three trot steps, I might just use seat and slide my leg back without using it. He is still forward enough, the leg position just adds clarity. If he loses impulsion, using my leg BACK THERE will make him sit back more and engage more strongly. Move my leg three inches forward and use with the same strength, and POW we have a lengthening!

    I was at a clinic with a western based trainer who said she didn't get why people would use their legs for go at the same time as reining back for a reinback. What she didn't understand is that the dressage riders aren't adding gas, they are just positioning the leg to give the horse a frame of reference for clarity. "Oh. She wants a come up and under and rock back on my hocks movement."


    As for the spur stop, no horse was born thinking the spur means go. You could just as easily have trained the horse that "jab on the neck with a pointy stick" means GO, and "jab on the croup with a pointy stick" means STOP. Just because to your horse a poke in the ribs means go, doesn't mean that to another horse it doesn't mean stop. It is equally arbitrary to the horse.



  16. #76
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    Quote Originally Posted by oliverreed View Post
    Just disgusting. WIsh someone could take a big pair of spurs to HER.

    Just curious, though - everyone is saying that abuse of one sort or another goes on in every breed - I have never heard of Paso Finos being abused in training or at shows. This is my breed of choice and I'm fairly close to a very well known training/showing barn in New England, have been to one show with them so far - have never seen any kind of abuse whatsoever.
    Saw this at a Paso breed show for sale that I have never in my life seen before:

    http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v2...1016002018.jpg

    (It is a bit, his fingers are in the rings.)

    Now what in God's name is THAT used for?



  17. #77
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    Sep. 25, 2003
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    Rochester, NY
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    Default What she said!

    My western pattern/trail horse has more "leg" buttons than any dressage horse I ever owned. Yes, he has a "spur stop". Yes, I wear spurs and he knows exactly when it means-"lift your back and work harder" and when it means stop. He also knows exactly what a spoken whoa means (it means "STOP NOW AND PLANT YOUR FEET AND DON'T MOVE"). Go is a bump, bump. Go faster is a little more bump and push your hand forward (somehow he can feel that even though the reins are barely at contact-don't ask me how, I haven't figured that out). He knows that leg forward, neck rein means spin and leg at girth neck rein means square TURN. He knows that inside leg at girth, outside leg behind means bend your body. I could go on, but you get the point.

    If I do need to go faster or encourage him to work a little harder? I ROLL the spur. Trust me, that does it and I have yet to leave a mark.

    And I do all of this wearing spurs. My 55 yo legs require them. Not because he needs them to be sharp, but so that I don't have to bend my legs so much in order to get them to touch him.

    Spurs are not the evil of the western world. Spurs don't hurt horses-people do.


    Quote Originally Posted by meupatdoes View Post
    There is also the position of the leg.

    In dressage, leg applied AT the girth means GO.
    Leg applied behind the girth means, "add engagement, come up under." This is why you see everyone with their legs further back in the piaffe.

    Even just HAVING your leg in a certain position, without actually using it, can help clarify things for your horse. So if I am asking for smaller steps for three trot steps, I might just use seat and slide my leg back without using it. He is still forward enough, the leg position just adds clarity. If he loses impulsion, using my leg BACK THERE will make him sit back more and engage more strongly. Move my leg three inches forward and use with the same strength, and POW we have a lengthening!

    I was at a clinic with a western based trainer who said she didn't get why people would use their legs for go at the same time as reining back for a reinback. What she didn't understand is that the dressage riders aren't adding gas, they are just positioning the leg to give the horse a frame of reference for clarity. "Oh. She wants a come up and under and rock back on my hocks movement."


    As for the spur stop, no horse was born thinking the spur means go. You could just as easily have trained the horse that "jab on the neck with a pointy stick" means GO, and "jab on the croup with a pointy stick" means STOP. Just because to your horse a poke in the ribs means go, doesn't mean that to another horse it doesn't mean stop. It is equally arbitrary to the horse.
    Last edited by IndysMom; Sep. 28, 2012 at 02:58 PM. Reason: additional info
    ~~~~~*~*~*~*~*~
    “ride your own horse” from sayings for life.



  18. #78
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    May. 21, 2012
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bEMxIR6Pusg

    Wow- Shirley Roth's you tube channel still have a video of Kissin The Girls up- posted last year as a yearling... he seems so naturally talented and obviously everything that a WP horse should be... such a beauty!

    I really appreciate the posts that have come from some of the WP people explaining things more to me without totally raking me over the coals for expressing my knee jerk uneducated opinion... Kinda talking me down off the ledge.

    thanks.



  19. #79
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    Mar. 27, 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by meupatdoes View Post
    Saw this at a Paso breed show for sale that I have never in my life seen before:

    http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v2...1016002018.jpg

    (It is a bit, his fingers are in the rings.)

    Now what in God's name is THAT used for?
    Unfortunately, that's a noseband for a bosal. They can come with all kinds of torture devices. Sometimes they have spikes, needles, or razor blades under the noseband - and sometimes under the curb too. One I saw was made from thin braided wire. They are openly sold at shows and a trainer was using one in an article in our breed magazine. I raised hell, and while they did post a retraction they should never have had photos like that in the breed mag at all.

    ETA: these are sold as "training devices" - where have we heard that before?
    They aren't allowed in the ring, but undoubtably some get through.
    Last edited by GotGait; Sep. 29, 2012 at 06:01 AM.
    You are what you dare.



  20. #80
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    Indymom, I wanna ride your horse! As english as I may be, I think there is nothing more beautiful than a trained bridle horse!



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