Welcome to Hoofprints and Happenings! Spring newsletter

Well lucky for us March felt more like June these last few weeks! Except for a couple of chilly breaks this has been quite the winter turnaround for all the horses and riders here at Harmony.

The crocuses have come and gone, the tulips are up and the horses are almost all shed out! Yeah! Now we are all up to our elbows brushing the mud off of the horses!

A warm welcome to our new students Katharina and Suzie as well as returning rider and Scooters #1 fan and his honorary horse-mom Pat. Great to have you guys!

A big thank you to Diane Barrow for donating her time and expertise. Diane taught Harmony riders how to give their horses a relaxation massage to get their muscles all warmed up before saddling. Diane's demo was really informative and it was wonderful to watch the horses relax under the techniques learned from Diane. Diane came up with this fund raising idea and all the monies raised go towards our sweet racehorse Skater and his ongoing care. Thanks guys! Skater loves you!

On the last Saturday of March over a dozen of us loaded with rakes, knives and cutters set off into the woods to clear the trails and cut some new ones. We had great weather and a great time! Lots of laughing and we even got a lot of work done!

Afterwards everyone met up for a much deserved BIG breakfast. What an awesome way to spend a Saturday morning! We now have have even more beautiful trails through our forests to enjoy all season long! Can't wait to saddle up and ride through!

The first week of April we had a special guest instructor here! Allison came in and of course her riders really enjoyed her classes. It's always great to get a fresh perspective and some new ideas! In just a few more months Allison will be back to teach this summer. I know everyone is with me in looking forward to having her come back. If you haven't already checked out the summer programs please visit our web site before they sell out!

The signs are posted in the barn--Harmony is now offering FREE CLINICS! As a thank you to all my current clients there will b a free one hour clinic the last Sunday of each month. These mini-clinics will be on a range of topics that will compliment your lessons. These are theory clinics (no riding) and will include topics such as; understanding sequence of legs for enhanced collection and lateral movements, clipping, basic first aid and much more. Topics are open to suggestion so if you have a subject you'd like more info on let me know! Date and time will be posted on the info board in the barn!

Spring Tip: Part of good horsemanship is the care and upkeep of the hoof. As part of good maintenance we want to make sure that the hoof does not get dried out and brittle. To help keep the hoof moisturized there are many products available on the market. However beware of the ingredients. There are many hoof dressings that include an irritant in the product. The theory is that the irritant promotes heat and blood flow to the hoof. The flip side is that these irritants are drying. So the more you use these types of products the more you have to use them – your drying out and moisturizing at the same time!

From personal experience and working with the farriers over years one of the best things is to make your own with simple home made ingredients; pine tar, vitamin cream, olive oil. Mix them together to get the desired consistently and away you go. BUT it's messy! The best product I have found on the market is Rainmaker—read the label-- it's pretty simple and no irritants. But REMEMBER! The ground is WET right now: Typically in the spring when the ground is this moist you don't need to add more moisture to their hooves! Nature is taking care of it for you! If you add more moisture or seal in an already very moist hoof you could be causing unwanted issues in your horse's hooves. Look at your horse's hooves—if they don't look dry they're probably ok—if the coronet band is soft-ish or if the frog and heel are soft don't add more moisture! We want a healthy hoof-- not a mushy hoof!

Giddy up and Live Well!

Late Breaking News

Changes are afoot in Ontario regarding our horse industry. Yes it is an industry, and a good one. You need to get the facts. This website contains the FACTS about the OLG program with the racetracks and shares the TRUTH about the economic impact and importance of the horse industry to Ontario.

Go to this site where you can email ALL 107 MPPs at the same time to voice your concerns.


This does not just effect "horse people" ---get the facts

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