Quick Tip #37--Fat Hides Form
Vickie Ives is much better at looking beneath everything else in order to see the skeleton of a Spanish horse than am I. A wonderful Spanish Colonial horse, when over weight, looks a great deal like a cob. Horses do not have to be as thin as those in Russel and Remington works to see their Spanishness, but neither may they look like four hooved cracklins if one is to best see what distinguishes them from modern horses.
When Vickie first saw Baton Rouge in 2007 she thought her to be highly impressive. At the time she was captive though still wild and unridden. For the last few months she has been covering heavy miles, lost fat, gained lean muscle and now her beauty is coming through. If you get close enough you can smell Sangria on her breath.
I have a recently acquired Spanish mustang of famous bloodlines. Her grandfather was Sundowner. She was not obese. She simply did not have her full muscle potential because she was not yet trained to ride. In a few short months she has gone from looking a bit like a quarter horse to having the muscle and beauty of a Spanish mustang.
When Wanchese, my Shackleford stallion, is fat he reminds one of a large shetland pony. When he is hard bodied and conditioned he looks as if the only thing missing is a Conquistador on his back.
Evaluations of "conformation" based only on pictures are particularly susceptible to being far off the mark unless the horse is lean and hard when photographed.
I have little use for pictures in such an exercise anyway. True, a picture is worth a thousand words, but haven't you noticed how worthless a thousand words are in today's market?