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RE: [RC] Horse conformation - heidi

Balance, balance, balance!  A horse is better off with "ok" parts all over that fit together properly than with a few stellar features that don't fit together.
If I don't like the body, I don't even get as far as looking at the legs anymore--contrary to what I learned as an old 4-H kid.  The shoulder assembly, the back/barrel, and the hip assembly should each be roughly 1/3 of the horse's overall body length.  The neck should fit proportionately on that package.  The depth of body should be the same as the distance from the sternum to the ground.  The forearm-to-cannon ratio should be as close to 2:1 as possible, and I don't want to see it any less than 1.7:1.  The hind cannons should also be proportionately short, ie, "well-let-down hocks."  Hip should be deep as well as long. 
If a horse comes close to that sort of balance, then I'll look further.

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: [RC]   Horse conformation
From: "Burnett, Elly" <egburnett@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, March 05, 2007 8:17 pm
To: <ridecamp@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>

I've started looking (much to my husband's chagrin) and have found a few potential horses scattered about the state.

The one that seems the most promising so far has great conformation from just a conformation standpoint.  I did the classic measurements of head, neck, midsection and hip, and everything looks good so far.  He's got perfectly equivalent measurements all around, but I don't know if he should have a short back.  His shoulder is fairly long and sloping, and he's got good-sized black feet.  His legs are pretty skinny (not overly so), but I'm a lightweight so I don't see that being problematic.

What should I look for as far as conformation?  I know the back is important, as well as good feet.  But after that, I'm clueless.

I do know that a good mind is important, but I'd like some pointers for picking and choosing conformationally.

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