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About Rod

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  • Location
    South Central Idaho, USA
  • Interests
    Horses, cattle, silversmith
  1. Breeding...

    Another resource of cutting stallions can be found on the Quarter Horse News web site ( Click on the 'Stallion Register' tab on the top of the page and choose 'QHN 250' from the drop down menu. From that page scroll down to the bottom and choose 'QHN 250 Cutting (2011)'. This will give a list of the leading stallions of cutting horses ranked by the amount of money won by their offspring from 2007 to 2011. (It looks like they haven't updated their web site for some time). The leading sire is Highbrow Cat, having 840 offspring win an average of $33,000 for a total of almost $29 Million. 2nd is Dual Rey ($11.9 M), 3rd is Peptoboonsmal ($9 M), and 4th is Dual Pep ($7.5 M). Smile has good taste as the last three are all grandson/great grandsons of the old Peppy San horse. If you subscribe to QHN, they publish current leading sire's lists of cutting, reining and reined cow horses periodically throughout the year. You might also be able to buy back issues that have those statistics. I also take into considerations the goals for the foal when choosing a stallion. If you are looking to raise a cutting horse forget about breeding to a speed horse and buy a colt with successful cutting horses for both the sire and dam. I once asked a top cutting horse trainer what he looked for in a prospective cutting horse. He said, "I only ask two questions, How much money has the momma won, how much money has the daddy won". Good advice! There are some cases though when breeding a cutting horse to a race horse is a good thing. I have done it before and have produced some good ranch horses. Horses with good cow sense having some speed. Certainly not as much cow sense as the cutting horse or as much speed as the race horse but enough of each to do the job on the ranch well. . 99.9% of the time you get a colt with qualities somewhere midway between the extremes of the parents. My wife's cousin has also had some success breeding speed horses to cutting horses. She barrel races and wants a fast horse with agility to turn the barrels. A couple of years ago she raised a colt that won $60,000 in the barrel horse futurities that was a race x cutting bred horse.
  2. Helping the neighbors gather today. One of their cowboys flushed a herd of mustangs out of the canyon he was riding in and over the hill into the canyon I was trailing cattle down. They ran straight towards me and didn't' notice me until they were about 50 yards from me. They veered off down the canyon, climbed the ridge and ran along the skyline for about a quarter of a mile before they went back over the hill. Four adults and two colts. One of the colts was just a baby, less than a month old would be my guess. The other colt was a roan which surprised me as none of the adults were roan. Thought you had to have one to get one. Something about free ranging horses at a dead run stirs this old cowboys heart. On the ride back to headquarters I got the chance to talk to the owner's son about the mustangs. His family has been looking after this little band since his grandfather bought the ranch in the 1940's. This ranch is not in a herd management area and 'officially' does not have any mustangs but there were always a few on the ranch. In the late 1950's the ranch changed from horsepower to machine power and sold their draft horses. They had a couple of yearning mares that they couldn't sell so they turned them out on the range intending to gather them up in the fall and sell them when they had a little more size on them. The young mares joined up with the mustangs and over the years produced quite a few colts that the ranch caught and used for ranch horses. They were bigger than most mustangs and were good using horses. In the 1970's the ranch started a horse breeding program and quit using the mustangs as ranch horses but made sure they had room on the ranch. They applied to the BLM for some grazing permits dedicated to horses and still today pay a fee to the BLM for this band to graze there. Seven or eight years ago this ranch had a major range fire that reduced the herd to 8 horses. Since then there have been no births and each year their numbers have been dwindleing. The ranch owners thought they must have been all mares or all studs that survived the fire. They were excited to hear that there were two foals in the bunch I saw. Looks like the 'stangs are making a comeback.
  3. Shoes Anyone?

    I shoe my own and this was the first time for the neighbors to use this farrier. I don't know who pays for it. Not me!
  4. Shoes Anyone?

    The neighbors that live just down the road called the farrier out on Monday. They were not going to be home but told him to shoe the bay mare. He just went a mile too far down the road.
  5. Shoes Anyone?

    Been real busy lately. Starting the fall gather. Been leaving before daylight and getting back late.Have helped two neighbors gather sort and process (vaccinate). We help them and they help us, plus we are there to pick up any of our cattle that strayed onto their place. We will start our own gather on the 24th. This morning I had a little time so I thought I'd trim up the old mare I keep for sentimental reasons ( I don't ride her anymore). She has some soundness issues and I keep her barefoot and trim her every 3 or 4 weeks. When I caught her I discovered she has shoes on! What the heck!
  6. County Fair Time

    I am aware of the prices paid for good ranch horses. In the past I've taken a few ranch horses to some of the premium sales in the west. I've sold horses at the Red Bluff, California Bull and Gelding sale, the Winnemucca, NV Ranch, Rope and Performance Horse Sale, and the sale at Hermiston, OR. I've never come close to topping the sale but I've 'beat' the sale average by a good amount with each horse. I used to keep 5 or 6 horses and every year I'd take the best horse I had to a sale and keep a young horse and try to make another good one in the next year to take to the sales. Entry fees, commission, fuel, hotel room and food added up to well over $1,000. But the prices I got made it worth it because I would get more for the horse than I could sell one locally. I haven't sold a horse since 2008. I am keeping a couple of horses for the grandkids (they let me ride them occasionally when I need them at the ranch), I keep an old mare just for sentimental reasons, and a barrel horse for my grand daughter that I don't ride. That only leaves a couple for a full time ranch horse and a prospect. I can't afford to sell any of them because I need them to get some work done and to keep the kids mounted. No doubt about it- I need a couple more horses! Just for curiosity's sake I took a few minutes to look up the results for the Red Bluff sale last winter. I consider Red Bluff to be the best ranch horse sale in the west. Five horses sold for $15,000 or more with the high seller bringing $28,500. Another 6 horses sold between 10 and 15K. not bad for ranch horses. However there is some risk taking a horse to Red Bluff. The sale average on 77 head was only $6018, meaning there were a lot of horses that sold for much less than the average. There were quite a few that sold for less than $3,000.
  7. County Fair Time

    My partner is still changing his water (irrigating) and my horse is ready so I have a few minutes to tie up some loose ends on this thread, First thanks for everyone's comments, congratulations and well wishes. It is nice to be able to share stuff with people who share a strong interest in horses. And thanks for taking an interest in my girls. It has been a good week. I am thankful that they have had some success and that they think that what they have accomplished has been worthwhile. Although the girls have been my top priority, there have been some other things happen this week that I have enjoyed. After the horse show on Monday, a guy tried to buy the girl's horses. He offered me more than what they were worth but I've taught the girls to shoot and I thought I might be in danger if I got rid of their horses. (Just joking). And one of the father's of a kid in my 4H club said, "I know Diego is not for sale but could you find me or make me a horse just like him?" It's just gratifying to have people recognize the quality of these horses. And not that they are world beaters or anything. They are just good solid horses that are willing to do something. The other thing I enjoyed this week probably shows some kind of character flaw or something. But I sure enjoyed my girls winning over those horses that parents/grandparents had spent $30,000 to buy. I parked next to a family that had a new Ford Powerstroke dually pulling a 53 foot living quarters trailer. The whole outfit must have cost well over $150,000. They had their trainer with them and they made a big show of getting their "valuable" horses ready. It just did my heart good to have my girls kick their kids butts in the show ring with horses I'd bred and trained and hauled to the show in a 1995 16 foot stock trailer that had hauled cows the week before.
  8. Change To Barefoot?

    KATYB I'd love to see pictures - do you mean worn behind the white line, or is he just "self trimming" to a more compact hoof? I'm not judging or bossing - I'm confident you know what is best for your horse, I'm just curious what it looks like. How many miles would you say you did in those two days? Actually it was the sole that was wearing down (although there was some length off the toe as well but not behind the white line yet). I rasped just enough off the wall and sole to set a shoe on and there was quite a bit of 'pink' so I went ahead and tacked shoes on him. I haven't been out to the ranch this week due to the county fair- I have grand daughters that showed pigs and horses. I am not sure pictures would show much at this point since I've already put shoes on him. 8 miles out and 8 miles back as the crow flies. We rode to the top of the hills looking for cows and gathered cattle out of all the side canyons so the total distance was more.
  9. County Fair Time

    The fair is over and done. I picked up the girls premium money this morning. The stock sale was Saturday and the girl's pigs were shipped Sunday morning. The 9 yo had a little bit of a hard time seeing her pig go. She had bonded with it pretty well and it was difficult for her to know it was about to be butchered. She cried quite a bit but is doing better today. The older grand daughter didn't want to show it but she was a little sad as well. The last time to feed and clean pig stalls at the fair was Saturday evening and she asked to be taken home Sat afternoon so she could avoid the last time thing. I fed her pig for her. The pigs sold well. The girls got the highest prices they had gotten yet (six years for the older one). Businesses buy the pigs (or steers or lambs) at an above market price premium for advertising purposes and to support 4H and FFA programs. This is an agricultural area and many people do not buy farm and ranch supplies from businesses that do not support the sale by buying the kids animals. Friday afternoon my younger grand daughter received her all around horse performance buckle for the junior class. Here she is in the hat she bought at the fair. Things are about back to normal. I'll spend the next few days at the ranch since my partner has done double duty this past week while I was at the fair. The fair was great and the girls did well but I am looking forward to getting back out there. Tonight the girls will be going to a Jr. Rodeo. All four will participate. Barrels and poles for the older three and dummy roping and goat tail untying for the younger one. Good luck to us!
  10. County Fair Time

    Quote by Smilie: Great to see the horse tradition follow down the family tree! Did it skip a generation in your case, Rod, as in my family, or were the parents of your grandchildren also horsey? Strange how that happens, Huh? My grandparents were horse people. My grandmother loved horses- she grew up in the era of horse drawn power. She often talked about driving a team while putting up hay and other farm work. She worked the horses even though she had an older and younger brothers. My grandfather often rode on the ranch. I remember he never used spurs, he always rode with a quirt 'tied' to his wrist with a leather thong. My mother was never into horses at all and my dad seldom rode on the ranch at home. Whenever we needed to do some work that involved a horse he would tell me to saddle up and he'd follow in the pickup (or motorcycle). My daughter was a good rider. A natural. Technically correct and had good timing. She instinctively could do things that I had to work at. And yet she never loved horses. In fact, I don't think she really liked horses all that much. She hasn't ridden in years. All four of her daughters are horse crazy. The two I mentioned earlier in this post are doing well. They have a 7 YO sister that is a much more aggressive rider than they are. She has fallen off/bucked off much more than they. I have to be down right mean to her to keep her off the younger, unbroke horses. Yesterday after the horse show she mentioned her butt hurt. This morning while weighing in the pigs I was told by one of the other parents that she was out behind the barns riding a bucking pony bareback with some of the boys. She got bucked off 5 or 6 times before she had enough. This evening when I asked her about it she showed me the bruises on her hip. You would think she has a 'Y" chromosome by the lack of sense she sometimes displays around horses.
  11. County Fair Time

    We will be spending a minimum of time at the ranch this week as our county fair is happening. My grandkids will be showing pigs and horses. This morning they had pig weigh-in and both girls had pigs that "made weight". They will show in Showmanship on Thursday and in Quality on Friday. Saturday is the 4H and FFA livestock sale where they will sell their pigs. Yesterday was the horse show and they both did well. The 14 year-old started off with a 4th in showmanship, a third in bareback pleasure, 1st in western pleasure class, 1st in horsemanship, 3rd in reining, 1st in freestyle, 3rd in trail, 3rd in barrels, and1st in pole bending. She finished in the top 4 in each of her events, which means she qualified for the district horse show in each class. She was the reserve all-around intermediate rider. The 9 year-old did as well in the junior class. Third in showmanship, 1st in western pleasure, 1st in horsemanship, 2nd in freestyle, 1st in reining, 1st in trail. She let her nerves get the best of her in barrels and poles as she broke the pattern in each of them- getting a white award. She also won the Junior all-around award. She wanted to throw away the white ribbons but I made her take a picture of them first. You call see she is real happy about it. She will also go to district in all her events, except of course barrels and poles.
  12. Raspberry Leaves And Heat

    When I was much younger I worked for a couple of years at a thoroughbred racehorse breeding facility. The old gal who ran the place fed raspberry leaves every spring because she claimed it would stimulate the mares to come into heat.
  13. Another Day In The Life...

    Cattle that are used to grazing on lush grass (or from a feedlot) usually don't do too well in our country, but If they grow up here they know how to hustle to find feed. They certainly can't stand around and expect to find enough food to fill up on. We select those cattle that are 'easy keepers', that do well in this environment by raising a good calf and maintaining good body condition themselves. I don't really know if it is genetics or something the calves learn from their mothers. Anyway, it's important that they know how to get out and find the feed that is there.
  14. Change To Barefoot?

    Well, getting back to the subject- I have an older horse that has been barefoot since early winter. He only gets ridden a couple of times a month as I have younger and more inexperienced horses to work. I tend to ride and work with them unless a job comes up that could be done much better by the older horse. I rode him last Monday and yesterday just to see how his feet would hold up. Yesterday was a long hard day and we didn't get in to the ranch yard until an hour and a half after dark. This morning I checked his feet out and he had worn down his front feet quite a bit in those two days, especially the toe. He got along good and didn't take a lame step but due to the amount of wear on his front hooves I've decided he is not a good candidate for going barefoot at the ranch. The barefoot thing has intrigued me but I am thinking that I'll keep shoes on the horses that I regularly ride on the ranch.
  15. Another Day In The Life...

    oops! As I dropped in to check on this post I noticed I put it into the wrong place, was intending to post to general horse talk. Here's some grass about a quarter of a mile from the pond where I took the pictures last week. Good grass there. Cattle congregate around the pond since it is the only water around for several miles. That pasture is about 8,000 acres and we run 600 cows on it for about one month. Right near the pond is what we call a sacrifice area, we realize that the cattle will eat and tromp out the grass in the immediate area of the pond. BTW, the pond is on deeded (privately owned) land and not on BLM ground. When I talk of good grass, some people think of an overgrown lawn or something similar. But this is a desert after all. The grass that thrives in the high desert is several species of short bunch grass. Each bunch produces a substance (toxin?) that keeps other plants from growing near it. That way it will not have to share water and nutrients with competing plants. This grass actually more nutritious than grass species grown in the valley near the home place.