By: Brittany Bevis
Happy New Year!
2013 has swiftly drawn to a close, and a brand new year is upon us, one that has special meaning for us horse folk. According to the 12 year cycle of the Chinese zodiac, 2014 is the Year of the Horse.
Blogger Susan Levitt’s astrological prediction for the New Year seems to match perfectly with the busy lifestyle of a horse showing fanatic. She describes 2014 as a time for “fast victories,” “unexpected adventure,” and “an excellent year for travel.” Apparently, the upcoming year will be a time when “decisive action, not procrastination, brings victory.”
Without delving too deep into an explanation of the Chinese zodiac, there are a few qualities that an individual born in the Year of the Horse is said to possess. Those born under this sign are loyal, vivacious, hardworking, impatient, independent, and dislike feeling penned in (Hanban, 2013). That same description could be applied to your own equine companion, could it not?
Without question, the most famous New Year’s Eve celebration takes place each year when a lighted ball drops in Times Square in New York City. In addition, the Thompson Reuters LED screen on the company’s building in Times Square will display three pieces of horse-themed art by Chinese painter, Yuan Xikun. In honor of the New Year, the Philippine Postal Corporation has released a special set of horse-themed stamps, as has the Singapore Post.
In honor of this special horse-themed New Year, we decided to ask a few of our EquineChronicle.com readers a three-pronged question. What’s your New Year’s resolution? What’s your horse’s New Year’s resolution? What might be a resolution for the horse industry as a whole? Read below to check out a few of the answers we received.
A resolution for myself- “This year, my horse-related resolution would be to get out and show more, if my gelding doesn’t sell. In previous years, I was showing almost every weekend. Last year, I wasn’t able to show hardly at all, so this upcoming year I would like to show as much as possible and maybe even run for the Amateur Hunter Under Saddle High Point.
A resolution for my horse– “If I had to pick a resolution for my gelding, Slick, it would be not to blow a winter coat next fall! He does it every year regardless of what we do to prevent it! I’d also like to add some more events to him such as the driving or hack. I’m sure he gets bored just doing the under saddle!”
A resolution for the horse industry– “I’d like to see the industry get more people involved with AQHA. Our numbers have dropped immensely in the past few years, so I believe we should go out and campaign to get people interested and to see how great AQHA really is. Show committees really should work on catering to the open show [exhibitors] to get them interested. A few years back, Rockstar Horse Shows held open classes for everyone. If the riders entered in those classes were showing a registered Quarter Horse, they could enter the approved AQHA class for free. More shows should try to do options like Rockstar to help entice people to join AQHA.”
A resolution for myself- “My horse-related New Year’s resolution is to go to more horse shows than last year.”
A resolution for my horse- “If I could pick a New Year’s resolution for my horse, it would be for her to stop grinding her teeth when I show her.”
A resolution for the horse industry– “One improvement I would like to see in the horse industry is more economical showing, lower entry fees, and lower stall and bedding fees. I think that would help a lot. Also, I would like for the World Show to go back to giving ribbons in the classes, not the tiny box [with medallion].”
A resolution for myself- “Get a horse.”
A resolution for my horse– “Lose some weight. [This] is for my first pleasure horse named Fred.”
A resolution for the horse industry– “I’d like to see less abuse in the industry.”
A resolution for myself- “My 2014 horse-related resolution is to continue to educate and inform sellers and buyers about the importance of [having a] bill of sale and that the 2008 State of Florida Sales Bill is a great model for any buyer, seller, trainer, or agent to adopt for all of their sales transactions.”
A resolution for my horse- “My resolution for my horse, The Game Changer, is to get him on a diet and to get him fit!”
A resolution for the horse industry- “One improvement that I would like to see in the horse industry in 2014 is greater guidance and clarification as to where and to whom exhibitors [should] report horse abuse or drugging behind the scenes or in the stalls at shows, without political or professional repercussions. An exhibitor should be able to use their smart phone and then AQHA could have a hotline number specifically for ‘whistleblowers’ who will have to provide their names and forward their video by email to the AQHA in complete confidence rather than going to show management or to an AQHA steward, who may not keep the information confidential. There should be accountability for those who are possibly breaking AQHA rules and for those reporting such incidences, yet confidentiality should be maintained and the reporting party should be protected and allow the evidence to prove or vindicate the offending party.”
A resolution for myself- “I’m working towards an equestrian scholarship to the University of Georgia.”
A resolution for my horse- “To get [my horse] Louie back in show condition.”
A resolution for the horse industry- “Unity between competitors.”
A resolution for myself– “My resolution is to get more organized in my bookkeeping in the breeding lab.”
A resolution for my horse- “I would like for our necking donkey’s resolution to be to come into the barn to do his job without such protest.”
A resolution for the horse industry– “My one improvement that would be great to see is the continuing effort to improving judging, especially at color horse venues.”
A resolution for myself- “My resolution is to finish my doctorate degree in Dec ’14 and get my horse finished and fit so that we can hit 2015 rolling!”
A resolution for my horse– “Max’s New Year’s resolution might be to keep all four feet on the ground during schooling sessions (no fussing!) and not to harass his pasture mates at feeding time.”
A resolution for the horse industry– “I hope to see our equine industry continue to work towards promoting our horses to people of all walks of life and within all disciples as well as keeping the fun and enjoyment in equine competition.”
A resolution for myself– “My horse-related New Year’s resolution is to downsize… easier said than done.”
A resolution for my horse- “My horse’s resolution is to learn western riding.”
A resolution for the horse industry- “I would like the shows to put more win money towards older horses instead of two-year-olds.”
We want to know what your New Year’s resolutions are. Here’s a New Year’s challenge… try answering our three-step question and posting it in your Facebook status. Share it with The Equine Chronicle so we can see!
Best wishes for a happy, healthy, and successful New Year in 2014!