Padrons Psyche

One of the architects of the breed we know today, Padrons Psyche embodies the bridge between the past and the future, by Betty Finke

Happy Summer!

“A perfect summer day is when the sun is shining, the breeze is blowing, the birds are singing, and the lawn mower is broken.” 

– James Dent

It’s hard to say whether summer river crossings are more fun for humans or their horses! Here are, left to right: Tatiana Coffman on Murietta V (Desperado V x Magdalena V), April Visel on RD Dasanni (Bey Ambition x Dulcinea BHF), Stuart Vesty on Royal Fierro (Falcon BHF x Franchesca BHF), Shane Nathan on Jubilation DDF (Maclintock V x Jortalia V),  Tim Love on MSU Capricious (Ohadi Ben Rabba x Samor Scintillate), Emily Devers on MSU Cross My Heart (Afire Bay Flame x Midnight Sonada), Scarlett Walker on Pringles, and Stephan Bender on Topaz.

Reactor (Vicente x Replika), Joeth Knight Fire (To Knight x GMA Tahitian Fire), and Sammy, the Half-Arab/Half Welsh pony, and their happy girls in Costa Rica.

June 2017

Vol. 57, No. 9

on the cover: Exxalt (*Excalibur EA x Vesperra by SF Veraz), 2014 stallion, owned by The Exxalt Partners, White Oak, North Carolina. Photo by Javan Schaller. See story on page 137.

Las Vegas

2017 Las Vegas Breeders World Cup
Embraced as a first-rate show by VIPs and small breeders alike, Vegas continues to impress, by Jeffrey Wintersteen

IntArah Embryo Auction

Racing

The President of the UAE Cup at Deauville
The first Group 1 race of the year on the European calendar saw Muraaqib victorious; anticipation mounts for a match-up race between Muraaqib and Al Mourtajez, by Steve Andersen

General

Sylvia Zerbini and Rajali KA — A Conversation
Using a unique training process that draws from her Cavalia experience, Sylvia Zerbini connects to Rajali KA through body language, by Elizabeth Kaye McCall

Warrior Horse
Reflecting on how much his Arabian helped him through his fight with leukemia, Ryan Melendez had an idea … , by Cindy Reich

Arabian Horse Breeding in the World Today: Padrons Psyche
One of the architects of the breed we know today, Padrons Psyche embodies the bridge between the past and the future, by Betty Finke

Small Breeders Big Results
Lee and David Black of Nyota Ya Nyika Arabians have built a program focusing on the daughters of one foundation mare. Their unique journey led them to Nationals success, by Mary Jane Parkinson

26th Qatar International Arabian Horse Show
Held at one of the most spectacular venues in the world, the Qatar International Arabian Horse Show is something to behold, by Caroline Reid

Wadee Al Shaqab — A Trainer’s View

Sire Line: Koheilan Adjuze DB, Performance Power from Hungary
From a journey to Syria in 1885 came the founding horses of this sire line, by Betty Finke

Moments in Time: A Royal Gift
The descendants of Nuhra carry a precious legacy, as they are the only representatives of the Wadnah strain left in the world today, by Betty Finke

Wit and Wisdom from Our Early Breeders: Garth and Joe Buchanan
Known for her generous advice to all who would listen, Garth and husband Joe Buchanan shared a vision for breeding beautiful Arabians, by Mary Jane Parkinson

Cover Story: Exxalt — A Breeder’s Vision
Ted Carson knew the moment Exxalt hit the ground that this was going to be a special animal.

Memories of Carle Vernet
Explore some of the great works of Carle Vernet, an Orientalist artist who immortalized the beauty and charisma of the Arabian horse, by Judith Wich-Wenning

Horse Properties Across the Nation
This month, we head to Oregon and Idaho for Region 4, then to Texas and Arkansas for Region 9, Minnesota for Region 10, and Michigan for Region 13, exploring beautiful horse properties across the United States, by Wendy Tinker

Wonderful Women of World
Read the stories behind some of the outstanding women who have made the Arabian horse part of their lives.

Upcoming Features

Breeders of the World

Egyptian Arabians in August and December

Arabian Horse World — Love

Mare and Foals in September

Departments

Web Exclusives at www.arabianhorseworld.com

What in the World: Happy Summer!

Stud Farm Diaries: A Very Curious Case, Plus Answers to Common Foaling Questions
Through a process of elimination, one mare’s unusual bleeding is diagnosed, by Cindy Reich

Arab Year

Rates/Map/Index

Upcoming Issues

Stud Farm Diaries: A Very Curious Case, Plus Answers to Common Foaling Questions

by Cindy Reich

My phone chimed and I glanced down to see a text from one of the mare caretakers. The text was alarming and the photo more so. The breeding crew had just gone down to the barn teasing mares for the morning and this mare started to urinate. However, the stream changed from urine to blood. The caretaker took a photo of the bloody pool in the stall and texted it to me. 

I immediately went to the stall, whereupon inspection, there were several other bloody areas of bedding, some with large blood clots in them. My mind started whirling — what could have caused this? The mare had been bred 17 days previously, and had been scanned not in foal a few days previously. Could her bladder have been damaged in some way? She wasn’t showing any signs of colic or abdominal pain of any kind. Her temperature was normal and she was eating normally.

One of the possibilities could be bladder stones. Bladder stones in the horse are primarily made up of calcium. Horses that eat a lot of forage like alfalfa take in a lot of calcium. However, they also have a lot of mucus in their urine to help keep stones from forming. Nevertheless, some horses do form bladder stones and they have a rough surface. As the stones roll around in the bladder, they can rough up the lining of the bladder, causing bleeding that would be present when the horse urinates. However, would it be enough for the large clots we were seeing?

Other causes of blood in the urine may include bladder cancer, urinary tract infection, or reaction to some drugs. 

The only way to diagnose the problem would be for an endoscopic examination of the bladder. This would give the veterinarian a chance to check for bladder stones and look at the lining of the bladder and the condition of the ureters. In the mare, the kidneys are connected to the bladder by the ureters — one for the right kidney and one for the left kidney. The urine exits the bladder via the urethra. Upon the endoscopic examination, there weren’t any bladder stones. However, there was something much more serious. There was blood at the entrance of the right ureter, and as the exam progressed, blood came flooding out of the ureter. This was the cause of the blood in the urine, but why? 

Sometimes excessive exercise can cause a very minor amount of blood in the urine, due to the bouncing of the bladder against the pelvis during exercise. However, the amount of blood this mare had in her bladder was well in excess of what would occur from an abundance of work. Also, this mare lived in a small paddock and certainly didn’t qualify for “excessive” exercise. However, there is one condition that fit this mare’s symptoms perfectly.

Idiopathic renal hematuria (IRH) is characterized by a sudden onset of profuse bleeding and large blood clots in the urine. Upon examination, there may be no other abnormal signs, which is where the term idiopathic comes in — idiopathic means “no known cause.” 

Interestingly, in the reported cases, IRH is most commonly reported in Arabian horses as opposed to any other breed. Treatment consisted of medication to slow down the bleeding to begin with. Initially the left ureter started to bleed as well. Apparently it is also more common in Arabian horses that if one ureter is affected, the other one will also ultimately become affected as well. If the bleeding becomes severe enough, a blood transfusion may be indicated. In this mare’s case, after several days of treatment, the amount of blood in the urine stopped. However, once the medical treatment was completed (ten days), the mare started urinating blood a few days later. There are some case histories of Arabians with this condition who received blood transfusions and treatment and went on to live a relatively normal life. However, there are also cases where the outcome was not as good.

With this mare, the prognosis is not good, considering that she started to bleed from the kidneys after the treatment was completed. She can go back on medical treatment and be managed for a time, but cannot stay on the medication indefinitely. Other than bleeding from the kidneys, her quality of life is fine. She eats well and does not show any signs of discomfort. At the moment, she will be maintained on medication. She has not lost enough blood for a transfusion and will be monitored daily for potential blood loss. We will follow up with her case in a future column.

The take home message with this mare is that when you think you have seen everything, you haven’t. IRH is most commonly found in Arabian horses yet this is the first one I have seen out of managing thousands of horses in my career. It is also important to always be observant and attentive to the daily habits of your horse. Although it was pretty hard to miss the large amounts of blood in this mare’s stall, if she were a pasture horse, for example, her condition may not have been noticed until it was at a critical point. 

Common Foaling Questions

At this time of the year, I have seen the same questions on social media coming up time and time again as the foaling season progresses. I thought I would address some of the most common ones in hopes of helping a greater number of owners.

1. What is the most effective foaling alert system to use on my mare? 

It depends on your situation and how your mare is housed. First of all, nothing should take the place of constant vigilance on the part of the mare owner. Having the mare in a stall or small enclosure with a camera is the most effective tool. The “foal alert” that is sutured on the vulva of the mare is the most reliable in my opinion. You will rarely miss a foal with this system. Regardless if the mare is down or standing, once the system is activated, it has the advantage of sounding an audible alarm for people working in the barn or sleeping in a bedroom. It can also be programmed to call up to three phone numbers and alert staff to the foaling. The disadvantage is that it is more expensive than other alert systems, but if it saves only one foal, it has paid for itself. The other disadvantage is that they can sometimes fail, and people who put all their reliance on this system as opposed to watching in addition to the alarm can be caught out on occasion.

2. How can I tell when my mare is close to foaling? 

The easiest method is to test the mare’s milk for calcium levels. There are several test strip methods and a titration method. I prefer the CHEMetrics water hardness titration kit. It is relatively inexpensive and gives a pretty clear test result. As the mare gets closer to foaling, the level of calcium goes up accordingly. When a certain calcium level is reached, a high percentage of mares will foal within either 24 or 48 hours. Again, nothing should take the place of careful observation (size of udder, placement of nipples, presence of wax, mare’s history, and so forth). However, this test can generally narrow the window of when the mare is going to foal quite effectively. 

3. Can I check a foal’s IgG level myself or does it have to be done by a veterinarian? What test should I use?

All foals should have their IgG levels checked at 12 hours of age (preferably). IgG (immunoglobulin G) is a good indicator that the foal got the antibody protection from the mare’s colostrum to maintain its immune system until it develops its own immune system at five to six months of age. If foals fail to get immunity from the mare’s colostrum, they can die from a simple virus or bacterial infection. If they receive some protection from the mare’s colostrum, but at a low level, the foal can be prone to illness and may fail to thrive. The reason the test should be done at 12 hours is that if there was a FPT (failure of passive transfer), the foal can be given oral plasma to boost its immune status up to 24 hours of age. After 24 hours, if the foal needs plasma supplementation, it must be via intravenous transfusion. 

The “foal check” Snap® test by IDEXX can be done with just a few drops of the foal’s blood and is very easy to do. It can be done at the barn and is the same test your veterinarian will do. However, it is not a bad idea to have your veterinarian do a well-foal check and do the IgG test at 12 hours if you only have a few foals. If you are foaling out a large number of foals, it may be more feasible to do your own. 

The protocol that we use for all of our mares is that we do a milk calcium test every evening, all foaling mares are under cameras, and we use a foal alert on mares not under cameras or special cases like maiden mares or mares with a history of foaling without any signs. We do an IgG test on all foals at 12 hours of age and deworm the mare to prevent the spread of S. westeri through the milk. We also take a small sample of blood from the foal at birth and test it against the mare’s milk to test for NI (neonatal isoerythrolysis), a condition that will cause the mare’s colostrum to destroy the foal’s red blood cells. It is similar to RH factor in children. 

As a result, so far, the foaling season has been a good one, and there are just a few more to go. There are still a majority of foals to be born on most farms in May and June, and soon foaling will start in the southern hemisphere. 

Hotter weather is approaching, and with it, the risk of heat stress, dehydration, and fires. Make sure there is plenty of fresh, clean water for your horses. They should have some type of shelter or sunshade. If you live in fire prone areas, have a strategy for evacuation in case of fire. 

It won’t be long until weaning starts and mares are being bred now for next year’s foals. It is a circular pattern that has played out for centuries. As each generation appears, we look forward to the next one. That is what keeps some breeders in this game for a lifetime. One never tires of waiting to see the next foal crop!

 

“Wanderers”

 

As I rose in the early dawn,

While stars were fading white,

I saw upon a grassy slope

A camp-fire burning bright;

With tent behind and blaze before

Three loggers in a row

Sang all together joyously —

Pull up the stakes and go!

 

As I rode on by Eagle Hawk,

The wide blue deep of air,

The wind among the glittering leaves,

The flowers so sweet and fair,

The thunder of the rude salt waves,

The creek’s soft overflow,

All joined in chorus to the words —

Pull up the stakes and go!

 

Now by the tent on forest skirt,

By odour of the earth,

By sight and scent of morning smoke,

By evening camp-fire’s mirth,

By deep-sea call and foaming green,

By new stars’ gleam and glow,

By summer trails in antique lands —

Pull up the stakes and go!

 

The world is wide and we are young,

The sounding marches beat,

And passion pipes her sweetest call

In lane and field and street;

So rouse the chorus, brothers all,

We’ll something have to show

When death comes round and strikes our tent–

Pull up the stakes and go!

 

 — James Hebblethwaite, The Oxford Book of Australasian Verse, London, New York: H. Milford, Oxford University Press, 1918.

The President of the UAE Cup at Deauville

by Steve Andersen

The winning streak spans five races over 21 months, from August 2015 to May of this year. In major stakes in France and England, Muraaqib has amassed a record pushing him close to the top of Europe’s tough purebred Arabian circuit.

On May 14 at Deauville, France, Muraaqib (Munjiz x Tashreefat by Bengali d’Albret), owned by Sheikh Hamdan Al Maktoum of Dubai, won his first start of 2017 in the $110,000 President of the United Arab Emirates Cup, also known as the Coupe d’Europe des Chevaux Arabes. The President of the UAE Cup was the first Group 1 race of the year on the European calendar and could foreshadow a much-anticipated match-up between Muraaqib and Al Mourtajez, the top-rated older horse in the world. Al Mourtajez did not start at Deauville, but there will be plenty of chances for a showdown between the two runners in major stakes in France or England this year.

Muraaqib’s win at Deauville confirmed he remains in peak form, even though he does not race very often. The five-year-old has won 6 of 7 starts in his career, which began in France in the summer of 2015. Muraaqib lost his stakes debut, a second in the Group 1 Qatar Coupe de France des Chevaux Arabes in Chantilly, France, in June 2015, and has not been beaten since. He won consecutive Group 1 races in the second half of 2015 — the Al Rayyan Cup and Qatar Total Arabian Trophy des Poulains — to be rated the top three-year-old that year.
Last year Muraaqib won both of his starts, including the Group 1 Shadwell Dubai International Stakes at Newbury, England, in July. He was expected to start in the Qatar Arabian World Cup at Chantilly last October, but did not race again through the year. Durability is a concern.

The President of the UAE Cup at Deauville drew a field of seven, with Muraaqib the even-money favorite despite his recent absence. The race was run at 2,000 meters, or about 1 ¼ miles on turf, on a right-handed course.

Muraaqib was ridden by jockey François Xavier-Bertras who had his mount well placed early along the rail behind pacesetter Mehdaaf Athbah. Bertras was patient, waiting until the early stretch before he urged Muraaqib, who had ample room with 300 meters to go as the field began to spread apart.

Mehdaaf Athbah was a stubborn leader, though. Bertras gave Muraaqib a few reminders with his whip before taking the lead for good in the final furlong and winning by a neck. Mehdaaf Athbah was a game second, and finished four lengths clear of third-place finisher Prada T, a six-year-old mare.
The close finish was not a surprise for trainer François Rohaut. “You will never see this horse winning by 10 lengths,” he told the press. “When he hits the front, he says, ‘Okay, the job is done.’ He is not like Al Mourtajez.”

Muraaqib was bred by Sheikh Hamdan’s Shadwell Stud. While the Qatar Arabian World Cup at Chantilly in October should be a long-term goal, there are plenty of stakes that will be considered in coming months, notably a return to Newbury for the Dubai International Stakes in the summer. The race at Goodwood, and Group 1 races at Deauville in August could also enter the discussions.
Rohaut knows what is on the horizon. “I think it is time to have a go against Al Mourtajez,” he told the press in Deauville. “I don’t know his program and I do not know our program. Sheikh Hamdan will decide.”

When and if the matchup does occur, two of the best Arabians in Europe will finally meet.

The French season began in earnest in April, with leading races at Toulouse.

Khataab (Amer x Djelana by Al Sakbe), who races for Al Shaqab Racing, finished two lengths in front of Mehdaaf Athbah in the Prix de Carthage at 1 ¼ miles on turf at Toulouse. Prada T was fourth in that race. Khataab has won three of four career starts at Toulouse, including the Group 2 French Arabian Breeders’ Challenge Classic last October.
On April 29 at Toulouse, Al Shaqab had a group stakes win when Almaa prevailed in the Group 2 Prix de l’Elevage for four-year-old fillies. Almaa (Amer x Nyriad by Dormane) has won two of three starts and is a filly worth following in the older female division.

Almaa was second in her debut last year and won her first start of 2017 in March. In the Prix de l’Elevage at 1 ¼ miles on turf, Almaa finished a length ahead of Muneera (Dormane x Hamiya by Al Hasim) in the field of five.

Steve Andersen is a correspondent for Daily Racing Form.

Lee and David Black of Nyota Ya Nyika Arabians

by Mary Jane Parkinson

What is the shortest distance between foaling and a Nationals winner? Ask Lee and David Black. They can give you a shining example. What is the most successful sale a small breeder can hope to make? Ask Lee and David Black. They will tell you of a sale that led the new owner to a National Championship in short order.

Lee grew up in Kenya — and still has a delightful accent — where she first saw an Arabian horse. “Yemini tribesmen had given an Arabian to a family friend, a neighboring farmer, as a sign of friendship,” Lee remembers. “This horse fired my young imagination, and my admiration for the breed only grew with the gift of a three-quarter Arabian gelding for my twelfth birthday. He was my friend and confidant through my teen years and after knowing him, there could be no other breed for me. I was heartbroken to have to sell him when I came to the United States to finish my college work. Then I met David and we married. I told him that someday, when we had the proper facility to keep a horse, I would again own an Arabian.”

David came from a far different background — a native Californian in the yachting business. But he took it with good humor when Lee started checking the classified ads for an Arabian, even before the last stick of furniture was moved into their new home in Jamul, California. They enjoyed the quiet and the fresh country air and, for their future, looked ahead to days and days of trail riding in the San Diego backcountry.

In the early 1980s, David and Lee were encouraged to become Arabian breeders as a way of acquiring income from their horse interest. So Nyota Ya Nyika was founded in 1984. In Swahili, the name means, “star of the desert.” David and Lee had collected a few Arabians by that time, although their pedigree knowledge was meager and they often relied on buying advice from others. “We learned by trial and error,” Lee remembers, “but we had some fortunate breaks.” One of the lucky breaks was a contact with Tom Townsend who led them to Linda Dunbar of Greenspring Arabians at Diamond Bar, California, where Tom was boarding a Khemosabi daughter. The Blacks loved and bought the Khemo daughter Khemo-Tu-Mari (x Tumari by Baske-Tu); she became their star broodmare, and Linda became a valued friend. “Linda was a wealth of information,” Lee remembers, “a small breeder who had earned an enviable reputation as a breeder of quality (including National Champions).”

A few years later, a prominent trainer, adviser, and entrepreneur came to the Blacks’ home to evaluate their herd. He told them they had only one horse worth keeping: the Khemosabi daughter. “Sell all the rest, tear down the corrals, and put in a tennis court,” he told them. “Then, buy a $50,000 mare from us and we’ll manage her and make you some money.” David and Lee could scarcely believe the arrogance they were hearing, but did do some culling and kept Khemo Tu Mari.

Now came the quest to find the perfect mate for Khemo-Tu-Mari. Lee had long admired *El Shaklan (Shaker El Masri x *Estopa by Tabal), a stallion bred by Om El Arab in Germany. At Om El Arab International at Santa Ynez, California, David and Lee admired (read loved) the *El Shaklan son *Sanadik El Shaklan (x *Mohena by Hadban Enzahi) and *Carmargue (White Lightning x Velvet Shadow by Bey Shadow), a recent import from England. The Blacks chose *Carmargue to breed to Khemo-Tu-Mari for her 1990 and 1991 foals: NYN Shangaza, a grey stallion who became important in their breeding program, and NYN Shahira, a grey mare.

“NYN Imara Versace (Versace x NYN Alis Shania by Ruminaja Ali) gave us our next big boost as breeders,” Lee recalls. “I just knew before she was foaled that we could expect a filly, a filly who would change our Arabian interest in a profound and lasting way. When Imara was about two weeks old, I sent some photos David had taken to John Brown at Rojo Arabians at Port Orange, Florida. We had an immediate response from John: ‘I have a buyer for your filly.’ A very attractive offer it was, and we agonized over the sale prospect, but after we thought about the cost of replacing her, the decision to retain her came easily. Friends and family thought we had lost our minds, but Imara was here to stay.

“Later, as we prepared to show Imara, she was so unhappy with her life with a trainer that we quickly brought her home,” Lee remembers. “Instead of a show career that year, we bred her to *Marwan Al Shaqab (*Gazal Al Shaqab x Little Liza Fame by Fame VF). Her foal was NYN Hisani, a stallion of whom we are immensely proud. He is our ‘flagship,’ the one who has taken our breeding program out into the big, wide world. We sold Hisani to Betty Radtke of Kharousel Farms in Clarkston, Washington, as a yearling, and Betty has enjoyed tremendous success with him, both as a show horse in halter and in western pleasure and ladies sidesaddle, and as a sire. His show career began as a Scottsdale Top Ten Yearling Colt, then moved briskly along to Region 5 Champion Yearling Colt, Canadian National Champion Futurity Colt, and U.S. National Reserve Champion Futurity Colt. Hisani now has a solid reputation as a sire, and he is well regarded as a sire of Regional and National winning get, both in halter and performance.

“Tragically, we lost Imara in 2005. She died of heart failure on the operating table while doctors were repairing a foaling injury. She left a 19-day-old filly NYN Sanaa Ya Imara (by *Marwan Al Shaqab). Losing Imara left us feeling gutted for quite some time as we’ve never considered our Arabians as commodities; rather, they are part of the family. David and I have often wondered at the extent of influence Imara might have had on the breed had she lived beyond her five years and two foals.

“Now, 12 years after we lost Imara, I am again seeing our involvement with the breed with enthusiasm and a promise for the future,” Lee notes. “For we not only have Sanaa, we also have NYN Zawadi, the second of two Versace daughters out of NYN Alis Shania (Ruminaja Ali x *Inschallah El Shaklan by *El Shaklan).

“Last year, Sanaa produced NYN Naibu Ibn Athens, a bay colt sired by LC Athens (Regal Actor JP x Genevieve C by Genesis C), a Regional Champion Stallion and 2011 Vegas World Cup Bronze Supreme Champion Junior Stallion. We believe the colt is destined for greatness. LC Athens, owned by Jim Robbins and Tim Kelly of R-Farms, Oregon City, Oregon, has all the right parts in the right places and is a brilliant outcross for just about all the contemporary bloodlines.”

To ensure foaling season 2018 will be fulfilling, Lee and David will breed Sanaa back to LC Athens and they will send NYN Zawadi to him after she foals in June. Zawadi is in foal to *Wortex Kalliste (Shanghai EA x Mirwanah Kalliste by *Marwan Al Shaqab), a French import standing in the United States for two years. In Europe, Wortex was named European Breeders Cup Gold Champion and in the United States, 2016 Breeders World Cup Silver Supreme Champion Junior Colt, and 2017 Scottsdale Champion International Breeders Classic Junior Colt.

Lee remembers a lesson her father taught her when she was very young: “‘When you play God, the responsibility is yours to take care of what you have created. After all, it is we who make the decision of who to breed to whom, who lives and who dies. Because we have made those decisions, that animal relies on us completely.’ I have taken my father’s advice to heart in every breeding choice I have made.”

Other breeders have furnished valued advice to the Blacks. Alun Prothero, *Carmargue’s owner: Experience taught Alun that if he bred an “A” animal to another “A” animal, he was usually disappointed as they seldom produced another “A.” Better to breed a “D” female to a “C” or “B” male; that way you can consistently come up with “A”s. Doug Dahmen reminded David and Lee that all great sires come from strong mare lines, and that they had such a representative mare line in *Inschallah El Shaklan.

“It has been an interesting journey,” Lee says. “We took a page out of the Bedouin ‘rule book’ and have focused exclusively on developing a mare band and breeding to outside stallions. We believe we may be one of the few breeders whose breeding program focuses on the daughters of only one foundation mare. For us, that mare is *Inschallah El Shaklan (*El Shaklan x Prometida by Zanjar). We bought her in 1982 and she gave us three fine daughters sired by Ruminaja Ali, FS Bengali, and our own NYN Shangaza. We are working with our fourth generation of breeding stock (and soon our fifth) and in the end we owe our every success to her.”

David comments on the life of a small breeder: “As a small breeder, you have a choice: You can be hands-on, or you can pay someone to be a caregiver. With Lee’s love for and connection with all animals, we chose to take on all the responsibilities of bringing our horses into the world. We always remember Lee’s father’s advice: ‘Play God and if you get it right, you will be rewarded by a relationship like no other.’ Horses are sensitive, honest, and intelligent, but with an intelligence that is from the heart. Horses are very connected to nature. One thing I learned early on is that horses don’t really need us. You can open the gate, smack them on the butt, and off they go to find forage and water. No, it’s the opposite: we need them.

“Lee is a constant observer and she has shown me some of the horses’ body language. Pay attention. If you are their caretaker and can spend the time to connect with them, you will be rewarded with the same bond the Bedouins knew long ago, and you will be a better human being for it. Don’t ask me about bloodlines or show wins, but I can introduce you to ten Arabians that can tell when you are having a bad day, long before you even realize it. A horse can see inside a human better than any psychic. Being a small breeder is a lot of work, a way of life. In hard times, the is-it-worth-it question has come up. The answer is yes, always yes.”

“If a person new to the Arabian breed should ask me for advice based on the NYN experience,” says Lee, “I would tell that person something like this: Educate yourself, but don’t be afraid to follow your heart and just go for it. As Albert Einstein said, ‘Follow the crowd and you will only go as far as the crowd.’ Have the courage and vision to forge your own path and even if you don’t make it to stardom, you will have the satisfaction of knowing you are a success.”

Stardom quality prevails at NYN Arabians.

June 2017 Issue

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