Buckaroo John's Blog

The Breast Collar

Posted by John Brand on

    The breast collar, or breastplate, is a piece of tack used on horses in a variety of disciplines.  The purpose of the breast collar is to keep the saddle or harness from sliding back. The variation of a breastplate used for western riding, is referred to as a breast collar. The term breastplate is occasionally used, though western riders generally use breast collar to refer to both designs. Breast collars can attach to the saddle rigging or dee rings on the front of the saddle.  In either case, an additional strap usually runs between the front legs and attaches to the cinch. Some...

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Wild Hearts Equine Therapy

Posted by John Brand on

Most of us are here because we share one common love: horses. Within that love are multiple disciplines in which we work alongside our equine companions. However, setting aside all the competitions, working and training, the most simple and deep reasons we do it all is because our love for these horses seems to be based off the heart to heart and soul connection to these beautiful animals. Last night, after a very long and tiring day, I had the opportunity to stand in a fifteen acre pasture as the sun was setting. The herd grazed quietly, each coming in...

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Vaquero Style Alpaca & Mane Hair Mecates

Posted by John Brand on

A new mecate is pretty, but an old mecate is beautiful. All of the hair prickles are worn off, so the pattern is very crisp and distinct. The colors are still as bright as the day it was made. There may be dander and dirt, showing where it has rubbed many a horse's neck, but that just gives it character! Alpaca and mane hair mecates are a natural alternative to synthetic fiber mecates. They are comparable in price, and yet have a longer usable life. Below is a simple list of the benefits of having alpaca or mane hair mecates:...

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That Little Bit of Leather

Posted by John Brand on

Alright folks, time for the million dollar question...who knows what these are for? If you ride a western saddle, there is most likely one of each side of your pommel. Some endurance saddles will have them as well.  These pieces of leather are called latigo keepers, off side cinch holders, and also flank cinch holders. The piece of the horse and rider's left hand side is used to hold the extra latigo after cinching up, like below. Now, the off side, or flank cinch holder isn't as commonly used. Nothing irks me more than to pull a saddle off the...

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Air Quality and Horses

Posted by John Brand on

This summer has been absolutely brutal for those of us in the west. The fires are ravaging the land and we solemnly watch in disbelief as fire after fire pops up. Even those of us not near fires are effected by the immense amount of smoke covering what seems to be from the Pacific Ocean all the way out to the middle of Nevada, from the border of Mexico all the way up to Canada.  Many are wondering how the smoke effects their horses, either in their daily life or in their work and training. Below is a guideline from...

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