The Judson College Equestrian Program got a new horse last week. His name is Trademark and he is a fifteen or sixteen year old Thoroughbred. Trademark is a vey sweet, loving horse. He has a very glam personality and already seems to be fitting in with our program and other horses well.
Trademark is very nice to ride. His rider needs to have lots of energy, but he is more then willing to please. He is a huntseat horse, and it is obvious just by watching him that he is very talented. Like most horses at Judson, Trademark will probably be used in our western program as well. This won't happen, though, until he has gotten settled in and we have a chance to work with him and help him adjust to the new discipline of riding.
Since I have talked about getting a new horse, I thought I would share with you some about how Judson gets their horses and what the program is looking for in their horses.
Most of Judson's horses are, like Trademark, donation horses. They belonged someone at one time that was looking for a new home for them for whatever reason. Judson does not except all horses that are offered through donation, but the equine faculty look into those horses that sound like they would be a good match for our program. If a horse is offered to us for donation and the equine department feels that it could work in our program, they arrange a trial period for us to "test" the horse. During this time we are looking to make sure that the horse is in good health and that it gets along well in our program. There are two major factors that we look for to make sure the horse will work in our program:
- The horse is safe
- The horse is well rounded
The first is because safety is our first priority. Our horses are handled by a number of different students from all levels of riding experience and these students need to be safe and feel comfortable with the horses.
The second is because Judson offers students experience in a variety of different areas of equine studies, including huntseat riding and western riding for all levels (beginner to advanced), light horse training, animal partnership, and, soon to come, a therapy class. Since the number of horses we can have on campus is limited, our horses need to be able to be used for a number of different things.