Dr. Julie Damron

Tips on caring for your pets from the Veterinarians and staff of Sierra Veterinary Clinic in Stockton, California.

Draft horses can do a lot more than pull carts

Draft horses can do a lot more than pull carts or heavy equipment. With practice, they can be just as agile as other horses for trail riding, dressage, and other equine activities. A local Draft Horse Quadrille Drill Team has been recently formed. This group was co-founded by Anita Dayton, the owner/trainer of K.I.S.S. Horse Center home to the rescue group Hope for Horses in Galt, CA; and Rebecca Brackney owner of Brackney Pet Services and photography studios in Rio Linda, CA.

Last October I wrote a pet column that featured Anita Dayton, a long time equestrian, trainer, horse rescuer, and owner of K.I.S.S. Horse Center. She is now in the process of creating a non-profit called Hope for Horses. This group is dedicated to caring for and rehoming horses in need. Dayton has already been saving horses from neglect and slaughter for several years out of her own pocket, supplemented by scant donations. With establishing the non-profit, Hope for Horses, she hopes to help an even greater number of horses find the loving homes that they deserve. Visit her website at www.kisshorses.com, and on Facebook at a page under her name. The facility hosts Open House events every other month to promote adoption, training, and the Draft Horse Riders Quadrille Team. The next two events are Sunday April 1st, 2012 and Sunday June 3rd, 2012 at the K.I.S.S. Horse Center, at 10576 Arno Road in Galt, CA 95632.

Dayton and Brackney were brought together over a malnourished Belgian draft horse that was rescued from the Premarin mare pharmaceutical project. The drug Premarin is an estrogen compound formulated from the urine of pregnant mares, and has been used to help treat menopause symptoms in women. Friar Tuck is was born to one of the Premarin mares. Dayton has worked for years to save many of the mares and foals that have been discarded after being a part of this project.

Friar Tuck arrived at the K.I.S.S Horse Center at the age of 4. Prior to that, Tucker was strictly confined to a 48’ x 48’ pen with no additional exercise. This level of restriction is not normal or healthy for a horse, and caused him to be very muscularly weakened and depressed. He had not received any ground manners or socialization training, and did not know how to behave around people. Friar Tuck would be pushy at times, and kick out at people when approached. This is very dangerous, especially when you are working with a horse that is 18 hands tall (6 feet) and weighs about 2,000 lbs. Dayton had the difficult task of finding the right home for him. “I placed an ad, interviewed many people and Gary and Rebecca where the ones that were perfect for him! They have done a fantastic job with him!” Tucker is now a very happy, affectionate horse who adores people and children. The Brackneys now share their home with 2 Draft horses as well as a Morgan horse. Tucker is the biggest member of The Draft Horse Quadrille Team.

The Draft Horse Riders Quadrille Team was founded to promote the versatility of draft horses, and also promote the rescue of these gentle giants. Visit their website at www.drafthorseriders.com; or join them on The Draft Horse Riders Facebook page. This team is always looking for more draft horse enthusiasts to join them. See the beautiful horses and members of The Draft Horse Quadrille Riders showing off their dressage skills at both this year’s Western States Horse Expo at Cal Expo June 8th-10thand at The California State Fair at Cal Expo July 12th-29th. You can also see a preview of their performances at the K.I.S.S Horse Center Open House events on April 1stand June 3rd. The Draft Horse Riders fundraise for horse rescue groups, including Hope for Horses.

You can assist The K.I.S.S. Horse Center/Hope for Horses in the important rescue work that is done. The organization is in need of turnout blankets in all sizes, muck buckets, and manure forks. They also need pipe panels, as well as metal and wood to build shelters and build/repair fences. Fence posts should be 8 ft or 12 ft long. Financial gifts are always welcomed. Please look at the horses available for adoption on the website www.kisshorses.com. If you want to help; but don’t want to buy a horse, these equines can also be fully or partially sponsored.

Volunteers are greatly needed that can build shelters and build/repair fences. People can volunteer to work with the horses; however, they need to have a strong foundation in riding and working with horses. Please contact Anita Dayton at (916) 591-2481. The K.I.S.S. Horse Center is located at 10576 Arno Road in Galt, CA 95632. Please visit the K.I.S.S. Horse Center and join us for one of the Open House events.

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Monday, 23 October 2017