One of the best parts about owning a rare horse breed is that you always get to be an ambassador! Not unlike driving a flashy vintage car, riding a horse that has a distinctive coat often turns heads. Whether we are doing an official demo – like we’ve done for pony clubs or at the Kentucky horse Park – or just trail riding on public land, we are used to answering questions and giving “elevator speeches” that introduce people to the unique curly horse.
These photographs were taken during a pony club demo day. Demos are a great opportunity to introduce curious horsemen and horse women to our breed – as breeders, we always sought as a potential opportunity for a sale in the future. In this case, we used the local pony club’s day camp as an opportunity to practice loading, trailering, and exposing our two yearlings to the world outside our farm.
Just taking yearlings off the farm and giving them experience being tied and then loaded at a location away from our farm is a great way to prepare young horses for their first horse show (Exhibitions and demos make our top list of Things to Do with a Yearling Horse!)
Demonstrations and exhibitions are often used by clubs like 4H or pony clubs as a way to help participants explore different breeds, riding disciplines, or mounted sports.
Our inquisitive and friendly yearling (one-year-old) fillies loved this demo. As you can tell by watching their ears and their expressions in these photographs they were curious and engaged in the children, who were equally curious about their unique coats and the difference in curl between the two horses that we talked to the breed demo.
A good breed demo is conducted not dis-similarly to a good lesson in the classroom – a combination of information presented along with an invitation for students to experience through their senses and an opportunity to ask questions. In this case the small pony club girls were full of questions about this unique breed and their “strange” curly coat. By the end, these two young mares had all the girls wrapped around their hooves!
With a Masters Degree in Psychology and two decades of experience as a horseback rider, breeder, and tack store owner, Tatum has developed a unique approach to coaching adult riders that integrates the physical and emotional aspects of developing as a confident rider.