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Goodbye To Horse Shows, Memoirs of an Ex Show Horse
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Good Bye to Horse Shows

(from the heart of a horse)

Goodbye to Whips

Goodbye to Welts

Goodbye to shocking prods

Goodbye to Cut Tendons

Goodbye to Spurs

Goodbye to Sad days standing in a stall

Goodbye to Ginger treatments

Goodbye to Broken Tails

Goodbye to Heavy shoes

Goodbye to Chains around my fetlock

Goodbye to Tatooed Eyeballs

Goodbye to Neck Sweats

Goodbye to Having one leg tied up whild being made to run in a circle

Goodbye to having my head hoisted to an uncomfortable height and left there for 24 hours

Goodbye to Lypo Suction and other plastic surgery

Goodbye to having my head tied down until my muzzle touches my chest and an iron bit cuts my mouth, all in the name of a perfect headset, whatever that is.

Goodbye to jerk happy hands at the end of a lead that has a sharp chain around my soft muzzle and chin

Goodbye to standing at attention or else...

Goodbye to Standing in a dark stall for several days so I will park out on show day

Goodbye to All of these things that kill my spirit, extinguish the flame within, dim the sparkle in my eye, destroy my beauty, and break my heart.

I have been rescued and can finally be what I was meant to be. A creature of strength and pride and freedom and love. I can be a horse.

I have been in this industry for over 20 years. I have seen horrific abuse, mostly when I worked as an apprentice for several top trainers. I am not here to offend the 15% of those who treat their show horses with love and respect. But the reality is, all of the things mentioned above are commonplace at many show barns. I am here to shine a light on the owners and trainers who by all appearances seem like you and I, but behind closed doors are barbaric. Money is their motivation, and consequently the beautiful horse suffers.

If you must show, and your horse is with a trainer, do not be satisfied by a clean barn, a good reputation, and an impressive show record. Trainers can be very savvy at hiding their methods. They will pretend that they just LOVE your horse, when really they love the pay check.

Show up unexpectedly. Question everything. Do not be intimidated. Ask to watch training sessions. Stay involved.

Most importantly, when looking at your horse, look past the glistening coat, the muscled frame, and the perfect performance. Look your horse in the eye. Your horse will tell you everything if you just listen. For the love of your horse, please don't look the other way.

~Misti Chastain