Tuesday, March 22, 2011

a little bit of a pet peeve

I just need to vent. What is it with people meeting horses and immediately commenting on various aspects of conformation?

The relationship between conformation and horses being able to do various things w/o damaging themselves makes sense to me - I can see discussing that if you're looking to buy a horse or trying to assess whether a sport is a good fit, etc.

Breeding for the best conformation possible also makes sense to me, and discussions in that context as well.

But walking up to a horse and pointing out a "flaw" is the same thing as me meeting someone and saying "Hi, it looks like your jaw is set too far back on the lower half."

It's bad enough that people do this, period, but imo 9 out of 10 horse people don't even know what they're talking about when it comes to conformation, and to a certain degree it's a subjective thing anyway.

Are any of us made "perfectly?" I think not! Do we categorize ourselves based on our physical flaws? Not in my circle of friends and acquaintances.

Horses deserve more respect than being discussed this way, as do the people who live with and care for them.

As my friend D says:

and that is all I have to say about THAT.


Calm, Forward, Straight said...

I'm glad I wasn't the conformation commenter!! ;)

billie said...

It was appalling - it wasn't even a horse I knew and I felt upset hearing the comments.

I was so tempted to turn to the commenter and do a quick assessment of physical attributes that were sub-standard.


I am probably getting more sensitive now that I'm working on the nonfiction book again. This might be a chapter! But not much zen in critiquing the bodies of partners... sigh.

Grey Horse Matters said...

You're right about the fact that most people don't know what they are talking about concerning conformation. But that's besides the point. What I usually say to someone who comments on something I'm doing or who is annoying me with their know-it-allness (and this is slightly obnoxious, which I've been known to be given the right situation)is " if you minded your own business you'd have less time to mind mine." Try it next time it works wonders.

billie said...

Thanks, Arlene - that is perfect. Now if only I can remember it when I need it!

ponymaid said...

billie, good lord, you've been reading my mind! Just today a perfect stranger in a delivery vehicle jumped out, walked to the fence and commented rudely on my body shape. At first glance I could see that he toed-in rather badly, was pigeon-chested, had a small pig eye and his ears didn't match. I said not a word but simply turned on my heel and exited the area. Breeding will tell every time - not that that cretin would know.

billie said...

Oh, Sheaffer - I see we are on the same wavelength yet again!

You have illustrated my point perfectly. A donkey simply accepts the human for what he is and moves on.

Sometimes I envy the equine's ability to whip around and deliver that double-barrel hoof kick. IMO that would give me the most satisfaction of anything in certain situations!