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From: Kathy Myers
As with all information, it's best to
pick through what you find and take
some things with a grain of salt. While
Deb Bennett's opinions are from a good
solid base, she also tends to get "way
I would say nice straight conformation
is a good thing... that minor cow hocks
are a small conformation flaw which are
usually unlikely to cause long term
soundness issues. I, personally, would
never pass up a horse with nice straight
rear conformation for one that had
slight cow hocks based on hocks alone.
For all the show dogs we raised, the
ones with straight conformation had
better movement and agility. Of course
the one with cow hocks was my top
obedience winner... because she had the
mind for it.
I suppose, as Tom Ivers can tell you,
we'd never get anywhere sticking to the
straight and narrow, but IMHO Deb tends
to get way off track sometimes. Learn
where she's coming from and pick your
way carefully through the rest.
:) - Kat Myers
in No. Cal with Magnum the TB ex-racer
(who in Deb's opinion is too weak to
actually saddle up and ride I suppose)
and Mr Maajistic... Endurance Arab
with nice straight rear conformation
and the agility that goes with it.
>[...]For years and years, we were
>taught that the ideal conformation of
>the hindleg was straight as a die. By
>this, I mean an imaginary line ran
>straight and true from the points of
>the rump, down through the center of
>the hock, down the back of the leg
>through pastern, fetlock and heel.
>However, Deb Bennet of EQUUS fame wrote
>several excellant books on the
>conformation of the horse tht
>taught me a lot different..
>She showed that such conformation
>interferes with the stifle. A straight
>and true horse cannot get his stifles
>open enough to allow the hind leg to
>reach forward as far as mechanically
>possibly. She showed that a little
>toeing out in the hind legs is far more
>efficient in that it allows the horse
>to gallop, and I assume, trot, the way
>it's supposed to.
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