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this educational opportunity. J.E. Aldana with SWANA (Swedish Warmblood

Association of N.A.) also points out that inspection results can be valuable to a registry. “The results of these inspections are used to analyze breeding trends and to evaluate the quality of specific breeding lines, so it is not simply about inspecting any given horse, but also about providing a much bigger picture regarding Swedish Warmbloods.” This observation applies to other breeds and registries as well. For breeders, inspections can be valuable because of

the feedback they receive on the foals they are producing. They might also learn of new stallions to try (or avoid!), and they may also observe new trends or tendencies developing within a particular breed or registry.

Preparing for Your Inspecion ✔

Obviously your young horse needs to make the best possible impression at his inspection. You’ll want to have him trimmed, bathed (weather permitting) and braided. The same goes for the dam if she will be presented alongside the foal. If you will be presenting a foal at his mother’s side, you’ll want her to be trimmed, bathed and braided as well. This means you will have to do some work beforehand to make sure your youngster is comfortable being handled and primped. The day of the inspection isn’t a good time to realize your foal has never seen a pair of clippers and is scared to death! It’s also not the best time to introduce your youngster to trailer loading for the first time. Your youngster will also be expected to wear a halter

(horses two years old or older are generally required to wear a bridle), and will be expected to already know the basics of leading and standing. He will be in unfamiliar surroundings, and the atmosphere may be exciting for a young horse. You want to be certain you are entirely comfortable handling your youngster before taking him to an inspection. Practicing in an arena ahead of time is time well spent. You will also want to check beforehand to see if your

registry has any special requirements regarding attire, so that you are prepared if you will be handling your youngster yourself. As a minimum you want to be neat, safe, and wearing comfortable footwear. Some registries are stricter about attire. For example the KWPN-NA (Dutch Warmblood) requires that handlers and assistants wear white clothing and white tennis shoes, and they note on their website that “a horse may be excused by the jury if

the horse, handler, or assistant is not correctly turned out.” Some inspection hosts make arrangements to have

professional handlers available. A professional handler is usually skilled at showing horses off at their best in an inspection setting, and many people prefer to turn their horse over to a professional handler if there is one available. There is also some running involved with presenting a horse at inspection, so if your health or aerobic fitness isn’t up to par, you’ll certainly want to find someone to present your horse for you. Since not all inspections have a professional handler available, inquire

about this beforehand. If there will not be a handler available, you may want to hire your own handler to attend the inspection with you, or at the very least recruit an experienced friend.

Horses arInspecion Daye generally presented on “a triangle” or some variation (for example, the KWPN uses an oval), where they are shown going away from the judge/inspector, then moving parallel to the inspector, and then moving towards the inspector, in a triangular pattern. The pattern will be performed at the walk and trot. Many registries then allow foals and yearlings to be shown “at liberty” (meaning they are set loose in a safe enclosed space.) In the case of foals being presented with their mothers, only the foals will be set loose to show off at liberty as they follow their dams. Following this, the youngsters will usually be expected to stand while their conformation is

Above: This lovely 2008 Oldenburg filly is bred by Juliana Wittenburg and Flying Lion Farm. She is Isabella by Le Santo out of Ivy League by Roemer. Photo by Arielle Perry

Warmbloods Today 51

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