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Between the Fences with Laura Tidball-Balisky

In the hunter ring, it it so important to have a sense of humour with the horses, especially the young ones. Competitors, horsemen, and owners really need to be encouraging of horses having expression – and shows need to hire judges that don't penalize it. I think especially in the pre-green hunter divisions the horses should be able to have some expression. I've seen some tough judges that have been harsh and we want to get away from that. As horseman, we need to advocate for the horse and move away from putting them on the lunge line for hours so they don't play a bit in the corner. When horses are bucking, playing, or getting strung-out between the fences, however, it is typically a case of not having done your homework. While we don't want expressiveness to be penalized heavily, we also don't necessarily want to encourage the behaviour…

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