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ID MyHorse

Kadeen & Kara

In my last few posts, I have been sharing about some of the horses I have owned, and how they happened to come into my life. I often mention Kadeen in my blogs. He turns 17 this April, and I purchased him as a 7 year old. His registered name is Bluespruce Design, and they called him Design! I thought that was a horrid name for a gelding, so I renamed him Kadeen, which means “friend” or “companion” in Arabic. He is the first horse I researched and purchased for myself. I was willing and able to spend a little money to get “the right horse”. I probably spent a little too much for him, but I learned long ago that it isn’t the initial purchase price that gets you in horse husbandry… it is the upkeep! The wrong horse costs as much to feed as the right one.

I found Kadeen on one of the online equine sites. I am in Kansas, he was in the Denver area. His owner had him with different trainers, but she didn’t ride him! I often said she was more in love with the idea of the horse than the horse himself. Kadeen’s sire stood at stud in Egypt, and he’s a very well bred guy. His previous owner refused to geld him for years, even though she had no bookings for him. There were several reasons he wasn’t ideal as a breeding stud, but she remained committed to the idea until Kadeen’s last trainer finally convinced her to geld him.

He had two years of reining training prior to landing at the training facility in Denver. He is not the right disposition or build for a reining horse, and I firmly believe the training had a negative impact on his mind. He is not a horse you force to do something. While I appreciate the “buttons” he still has, we use those buttons to negotiate tricky places on the trail, not spin in the arena. It may appear I am opposed to reining training, but that is not what I am saying at all. I just think Kadeen’s previous owner had her own agenda that didn’t necessarily fit the horse. Additionally, I have been told that some reiner trainers can be a bit dogmatic in their approach…

Western Pleasure Nationals at Age 5

The trainer that had him in Denver trained him in Western Pleasure. He showed him nationally in Western Pleasure as a Junior horse. I remember him telling me that I’d do fine in regional shows but that Kadeen was not national show material. I assured him I had no intention of doing large shows, but that I intended to use all those awesome buttons to navigate beautiful countryside. I have done a few very low key shows, including the Youth Show at the American Royal which always has a few adult open classes. The adult turnout is very low. We just did it for the fun of getting in the ring, and to motivate me to get back in the saddle on a regular basis after a few very challenging years. You can tell by his headset that we didn’t spend nearly enough time getting ready, but I didn’t really care! (His beautiful long tail was somehow a casualty of those aforementioned tough few years where if he was eating and not bleeding we were good. It grows quite fast.)

The Open Show at the American Royal

Kadeen was more horse than I was rider when I first bought him. I had much to learn, even though I had been riding most of my life. In this post, I talked about my epiphany that I truly didn’t have my horse’s respect. We had many years (too many!) of not really being in sync. At one point, I decided I didn’t have the right horse and resolved to sell him. After looking at a few other horses, I realized I had an incredible horse and the problem was not him! It was ME! Thus began the first day of the rest of our lives…

Alan & Kadeen in the Rockies

After several years of hard work on my part, we now have that relationship that is represented by the meaning of his name. He is my friend and companion. He has become such a willing mount that my significantly less experienced boyfriend rode him all last summer without incident. (With the exception of the fact that Kadeen is super competitive and if he is not in front of a large group of horses, it is a much less enjoyable ride!)

As of a few days ago, enter Kara. If it is spelled Cara, it is Gaelic in origin and means “friend.” Kara is from the Cornish word meaning “love.” I was planning on spelling it with a “C” but decided on “K” as in Kadeen. Like Kadeen, I know I am adding a much loved friend to my life. She has big paws to follow as my last Border collie raised from puppyhood was one amazing dog. But I couldn’t be more in love with this sweet pup and she is everything I expected thus far. She’s spunky and smart and super cute. There will undoubtedly be many blogs about her in the future, starting with the next one…

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