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Dying the Water - Why?

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  • Dying the Water - Why?

    What is the reason for dying the water at events? Is it to reduce glare or so the horse can't see the bottom? If it's to kill algae you would think they'd do that well ahead of time so the color that freaks out a lot of horses would dissipate. Just wondering.
    Yogurt - If you're so cultured, how come I never see you at the opera? Steven Colbert

  • #2
    I asked the course designer at Rocking Horse that question this weekend (water there died blue for the first time in my experience) and he said it was just to do something different (which makes sense for a venue that runs something like 6 horse trials a year and allows schooling throughout the year). It is a way of changing the question that doesn't require building new fences. My guy didn't seem to care when we schooled Sunday evening after the event ended
    OTTBs rule, but spots are good too!

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Mtn trails View Post
      What is the reason for dying the water at events? Is it to reduce glare or so the horse can't see the bottom? If it's to kill algae you would think they'd do that well ahead of time so the color that freaks out a lot of horses would dissipate. Just wondering.
      Depends on the time of year and location....for some places and times of year, you need it to kill the algae then and there isn't time for it to dissipate before the event. I'd rather it be dyed then some of the scummy water I've nearly taken an unexpected swim in
      ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **

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      • #4
        Because it's pretty & looks very good in the pro photos. Honestly.

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        • #5
          I have to honestly say I am surprised that horses might "freak out" at the colour, as opposed to the actual water itself. Anyone care to relate their experience with this?

          (I have ridden a few horses in dyed water, but none of them cared about water, so I didn't notice anything.)
          Blugal

          You never know what kind of obsessive compulsive crazy person you are until another person imitates your behaviour at a three-day. --Gry2Yng

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          • #6
            Horses don't have the same depth perception as we do, so dying it would not change their reluctance or willingness to go forward. Horses can't see the bottom of a puddle on asphalt, let alone a water complex. To horses, it probably looks closest to something similar to a black puddle of oil - they really don't have the required rods/cones to be able to detect the depth or color. Horses don't see red colors well (or at all) so any dye similar to purple, red, or orange would look very similar to what the color normally is - similarly, yellow and green are very close colors for a horse.
            Last edited by beowulf; Feb. 18, 2013, 08:06 PM. Reason: spelling
            AETERNUM VALE, INVICTUS - 7/10/2012

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Blugal View Post
              I have to honestly say I am surprised that horses might "freak out" at the colour, as opposed to the actual water itself. Anyone care to relate their experience with this?

              (I have ridden a few horses in dyed water, but none of them cared about water, so I didn't notice anything.)

              Sometimes the dye gives it a funny smell. I think that is what they more react to than the color.
              Last edited by bornfreenowexpensive; Feb. 19, 2013, 12:58 PM.
              ** Tact is the ability to tell someone to go to hell in such a way that they look forward to the trip. ~Winston Churchill? **

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              • #8
                Maybe its just me, but I think it helps them see it better. Now for some that's a bad thing but there's lots of videos of people schooling water that is not dyed, and as brown as the take off. Many horses stepped off without realizing the question and both horse and rider went swimming.

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                • #9
                  This is coming from a dressage rider, with no experience in cross country- but does the dyed water dye your horse?
                  Tack Cleaning/All-Things-Tack nut
                  ~DQ wanna-be~

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                  • #10
                    what color is the water dyed?
                    Teaching Horseback Riding Lessons: A Practical Training Manual for Instructors

                    Stop Wasting Hay and Extend Consumption Time With Round Bale Hay Nets!!

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by dreamingofdressage View Post
                      This is coming from a dressage rider, with no experience in cross country- but does the dyed water dye your horse?
                      No, it doesn't

                      Originally posted by equinekingdom View Post
                      what color is the water dyed?
                      Usually a really obnoxiously loud shade of blue

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                      • #12
                        Ah, the dreaded, blue algae killer, water: it will stain your breeches, et al, if you fall in it. Ask me how I know?

                        Once it is in your breeches, it will not come out. It took six washings and all of it still did not come out.

                        They put the stuff in the water to kill any algae that might grow in it, due to warm weather and stagnent water. Photographers love it. It does make lovely, colorful photos. Since my first experience with it caused me to join the Eventers Swimming Club, I took every opportunity to school it before I had to ride through at the next event.
                        When in Doubt, let your horse do the Thinking!

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                        • #13
                          I distinctly recall a thought that zipped through my head after Vernon pecked on landing in the Tidy Bowl blue water at Surefire..."Oh god. If I fall, my britches will never be the same." I held on, Vernon never took his eye off the out, and we got some great blooper reel photos with some pretty blue water.
                          Amanda

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by equinekingdom View Post
                            what color is the water dyed?

                            Here's a visual: https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?f...type=3&theater
                            Last edited by JWB; Feb. 19, 2013, 03:46 PM. Reason: Wrong link
                            The rebel in the grey shirt

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