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spinoff - fake tails in eventing - do they exist or not?

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  • #41
    Originally posted by sterling2000 View Post
    Some tails actually are being made that have the hide still on them, or a synthetic version of that.
    Gross?

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    • #42
      Originally posted by RAyers View Post
      Just a bunch of girls and their Barbie dolls. I'm going to go hang with the boys on XC.
      Hey, I only had the Barbie horses -- can I come hang out? Maybe this is why I ended up working with 98% guys after 8 years at women's schools, ROFL!

      At least Heinz has enough of a sense of humour to get it!
      Life doesn't have perfect footing.

      Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
      We Are Flying Solo

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      • #43
        Originally posted by bornfreenowexpensive View Post
        Well...I know that there are people out there that do this...but it is NOT a majority.

        I think in all the eventing barns I've been in...and some are very BN...none of this is done. I know of one horse that had a fake tail but he really had NO tail...and they only used it at the really big competitions.

        I'm in the group that doesn't have the time....if someone else wanted to get my thin tail guy a tail, pay for it themselves and put it in etc....I wouldn't say no, but absoultely not going to do it myself.

        I have enough trouble finding time to dye my OWN hair and that is FAR FAR FAR more important than covering some sun bleaching on my horse.

        ETA: I was a groom once....and we didn't do all that. We spent time grazing, and rubbing and making sure my horses were happy but clean . My horses drew compliments showing at Devon. No fake tails and no dye. You can make your horse look sharp and fantastic withOUT doing all of that. To each their own.
        This makes me feel better! Growing up in Pony Club we were not only not expected to use all sorts of "artificial" grooming aids, we were prohibited from doing so! Even so much as using detangler on a tail could earn you penalties from some horse management judges. So although I have always taken pride in having my horse spotless and sparkling, I don't think that fake tails, spray paint and hair dye should have to be the standard, as long as the horse is clean and well groomed otherwise. Especially considering that some of us have to play both groom AND rider!

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        • #44
          As a USEA trained judge, I can't imagine giving someone a higher score based on the horse's tail. I've only judged schooling shows so far, but still, really, appearance is not supposed to enter into it. You don't want your horse filthy and covered in shavings, but fake tails? Maybe I'm turning into an old fogey, but that's not the eventing I grew up with.
          Last edited by 4cornersfarm; May. 3, 2013, 02:09 PM. Reason: spelling
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          • #45
            Originally posted by 4cornersfarm View Post
            As a USEA trained judge, I can't imagine giving someone a higher score based on the horse's tail. I've only judged schooling shows so far, but still, really, appearance is not supposed to enter into it. You don't want your horse filthy and covered in shavings, but fake tails? Maybe I'm turning into an old fogey, but that's not the eventing I grew up with.
            THANK YOU! I haven't taken the time to read the entire thread, but most of this fake tail and hair dying is making me feel sick. And all the added bling (beyond the browband) is beginning to sound like a western halter/pleasure thread!

            Let's get back on focus... eventing (and dressage) is, or should be, about performance. The horse should be turned out clean, braided and simple. The next thing we know, the jog will be a halter class and dressage will be a saddleseat class! Let's just get back to what's really important! Of course, I'm an old fogey, too!

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            • #46
              My last 3 dressage trainers (including the current one) are USEF "S" judges (one is on the committee that set dressage judging standards) and I have ridden numerous times with FEI "C" and FEI "O" judges. A few of them got their GP scores on the notoriously tailless appaloosa as well as other, non-standard, breeds. A couple of them also were eventers back in the day.

              EVERYONE of them over the years has told me that they do not care about the tail appearance in terms of length/fullness. They do use the tail as an indicator of how evenly a horse moves. The tail should swing evenly side-to-side as the horse moves. Thus, yes, a longer tail, provided it moves in a sinusoid, can help enhance the appearance of even movement. BUT lack of a tail will not result in penalty, at least from an upper level judge.

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              • #47
                Thank you, Reed. Anyone who has scribed would have quickly learned how little consequence the horse's hairdo has on how the judge scores the movements. Their eye is farrrr to busy with 100 other things.
                Life doesn't have perfect footing.

                Bloggily entertain yourself with our adventures (and disasters):
                We Are Flying Solo

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                • #48
                  Of all of the disciplines, it is sad to see eventing cave to becoming a beauty contest.

                  I don't care if my horse has some nicks or bites from his pasture buddies or is a little sun bleached; that means he lives like a horse. I don't care if his tail is short and thin; that's his breeding. I don't care if his nose is whiskery; those are there for a purpose.

                  The fake tails and the highlighter and the "spray paint"... I just don't like it.
                  As Peter, Paul, and Mary say, a dragon lives forever.

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                  • #49
                    I am a little conflicted about having a horse really well turned out for a big show.
                    I do think that having the horse in the appropriate weight (fit, not fat) is essential.
                    But when we reward 'shiny', and discount a spare tail or sunbleached hair, we are by definition discouraging outdoor horsekeeping. And I have a problem with that- I think that MOST horses (there will be a few exceptions) should be kept outside, not in a stall, within a herd that gets along.

                    As far as a fake tail...I suppose, if you like. I'm not too fussed, especially if it 'allows' you to keep your horse turned out all the time with his tail-chewing buddies.
                    But I'd prefer if your preparedness and organization were judged more on having clean tack in good repair, and a horse in a healthy, fit weight, rather than how long his tail is or how shiny and reflective the horse's coat is.

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                    • #50
                      I don't think eventing is necessarily caving to become a beauty contest. I will admit that I have been known to dye my mares tail in the summer when it has been sun bleached, and yes, I do own a can or two of Shapley's to cover up any marks on her legs. Sometimes I even put on a coat of hoof conditioner before Dressage. When I was younger I did the 4-H shows, so yes, I have shown western. But I enjoy playing "My Little Pony" with my horse sometimes. I am a current Pony Club member(going for my H-A in July!) so I also know how to turn a horse out using little more than elbow grease and shampoo. But as long as you're not prioritizing your turnout over fitness and physical preparedness, I don't have a problem with playing dress up!

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                      • #51
                        Originally posted by Fillabeana View Post
                        I am a little conflicted about having a horse really well turned out for a big show.
                        I do think that having the horse in the appropriate weight (fit, not fat) is essential.
                        But when we reward 'shiny', and discount a spare tail or sunbleached hair, we are by definition discouraging outdoor horsekeeping. And I have a problem with that- I think that MOST horses (there will be a few exceptions) should be kept outside, not in a stall, within a herd that gets along.

                        As far as a fake tail...I suppose, if you like. I'm not too fussed, especially if it 'allows' you to keep your horse turned out all the time with his tail-chewing buddies.
                        But I'd prefer if your preparedness and organization were judged more on having clean tack in good repair, and a horse in a healthy, fit weight, rather than how long his tail is or how shiny and reflective the horse's coat is.
                        All of the horses I groomed lived out 24/7 and were kept in pens outside at horse shows. Most of them had never been inside. And we had horses from BN to ***. We actually didn't even have a barn on the property.

                        It is not about getting more points for having a nice tail. We all know that horses with crooked blazes can look like they aren't traveling straight and my horse with 4 white socks looked downhill because the front socks were shorter than the hinds. Yes, judges are way smart enough to ignore that, but the overall picture DOES matter. It's the difference between 1st and 2nd. Tails help balance the picture - they accent the overall look. And they make a horse look polished along with things like patterns and a shiny coat. I'm not saying you will win the dressage because you had the best turn out but if you have a nice, balanced overall picture it can be the difference of 0.2 points and first place.

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                        • #52
                          CatchMeIfUCan summed it up pretty well.

                          No judge will place a horse JUST because of turnout. But it might get you an extra few fractions of a point, and that might just get you ahead. A fuller tail gives the illusion that the horse is moving more balanced and more from their hind end than a horse with a sparse tail. That is not to say every horse should have a fake, but one with a really thin tail may benefit from having an extra 1/2 pound in there.

                          And FWIW, my horses live out and I haven't had to use shoeshine for the coat in a few years since I got their feed sorted out. It's all about the elbow grease you put into the coat, not how clean you keep the horse (although this rule is somewhat different if you have a grey horse in an area with clay soil - they turn pink with out regular baths).

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                          • #53
                            There's a difference between good turnout and fake. I don't even really have a problem with a little dye to help with a sunbleached tail, so long as you're really just trying to restore what was there.

                            I see horses beginning to reflect society more-and-more. We are striving to look "perfect" (or someone's idea of perfect). The "right" height and weight, the "right" hair colour, the fake nails, the fake eyelashes, the make-up to go grocery shopping. Maybe I need plastic surgery to "fix" my ears that stick out a little more than the models' do. It's more icing than cake.

                            Eventing is supposed to be about functionality. There is no need for so much cover-up to make the horse look "better". It strikes me as shallow that people think my horse doesn't look good with his God-given tail, and I should make him look "better" by making him look different than he does. It swats flies fine; that's what it's there for. He's a horse.
                            As Peter, Paul, and Mary say, a dragon lives forever.

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                            • #54
                              Bruce Davidson used a fake tail on Eagle Lion.

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                              • #55
                                Originally posted by CrowneDragon View Post
                                Eventing is supposed to be about functionality. There is no need for so much cover-up to make the horse look "better". It strikes me as shallow that people think my horse doesn't look good with his God-given tail, and I should make him look "better" by making him look different than he does. It swats flies fine; that's what it's there for. He's a horse.
                                My whole point is that tails are not used to make the horse look better - it is to make them look more balanced to the eye. The appy earlier in the thread looks adorable with his whispy tail and would look fabulous with a mud knot if his rider wanted to look more polished. It is not a fashion show about which horse has the fluffiest tail, and super thick tails can make a horse look out of balance too. I am talking about tenths of a point that DO make a difference when you are trying to win a *** and having a balanced picture can make that difference. Tails are no different than wearing white gloves to show off your hands or putting more/less braids in to make a neck look longer/shorter or using baby powder to make white socks stand out.

                                And for the record, I don't use false tails on my own horses. I don't care about those extra 0.2 points. But I will if I ever down centerline at a big competition or an FEI event.
                                Last edited by CatchMeIfUCan; May. 10, 2013, 04:45 PM.

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