The Whole Horse Catalog: The Complete Guide to Buying, Stabling and Stable Management, Equine Health, Tack, Rider Apparel, Equestrian Activities and Organizations...and Everything Else a Horse Owner and Rider Will Ever Need

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Simon and Schuster, Dec 17, 1998 - Pets - 351 pages
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The year was 1975, almost a quarter of a century ago, and catalog sourcebooks were still very much a force in book publishing. To that point, however, no one had compiled one on equestrian products, services, and organizations: something that would present the basics of owning, looking after and using horses, together with leads as to where to find more detailed information. Well, I asked myself, why shouldn't I put such a book together? After all, I was a writer by profession and a recreational rider by avocation....why not combine the two?

In those days (and now, too) anyone in search of intelligent feedback on any horse-book idea could do no better than to ask Bill Steinkraus, the United States Equestrian Team mainstay and all-around polymath.

Bill, who had just moved to Simon & Schuster as an editor, responded in something of a good news/bad news way. The good news was that he found the concept eminently viable. The not-so-good news (or so it seemed to me) was that the project was far too massive for one person -- namely, me -- to do alone.

Fortunately, help was close at hand. A number of New York book-publishing types who were also avid riders thought the idea was worth getting involved with -- and so they did.

Barbara Burn had introduced herself several years earlier as "the girl who outfitted the shed in the backyard for the horse my parents never bought me." Barbara, who had edited two of my books, chose the areas of apparel and horse health, the latter as if anticipating her marriage to a veterinarian who, among his other duties, looked after New York City's Mounted Police horses.

Gail and Werner Rentsch were and are, respectively, a publices have arisen.There was plenty that could be added or deleted.

Nothing succeeds like success, and convincing the publisher that "The Catalog" needed substantial updating that went far beyond the cosmetic changes we had made in previous editions was less of a chore than anticipated. The extent to which we were allowed to make changes, however, took a bit of negotiating. If we had our druthers, we would have been able to revise far more than Simon & Schuster allowed us to, but that's the difference between authors and publishers when it comes to cost-consciousness.

Making the changes and additions gave us an opportunity to investigate many of the ways in which the horse world has changed. Some breeds and types of horses, especially the European warmbloods, have become immensely popular in this country. Dressage, competitive endurance riding, cutting and team penning lead the list of growth sports. Even when urban encroachment is reducing the amount of recreation land, trail riding for pleasure is another activity that's experiencing a burst of interest and energy.

When it comes to new products, even such conservative bastions as the show ring and foxhunting field recognize that safety and comfort are the order of the day. No matter what the type of riding or driving, helmets with chin straps are no longer considered icky or wussy, but as an essential way to reduce the possibility of head injuries. Flack-jacket vests are a similar requirement for the cross-country phase of combined training's horse trials and events (many rodeo riders use them, too, although ten-gallon hats haven't given way to harder headgear). Comfort begins with stretch fabrics used in clothing for a variety of discipli nesand climates, with bright colors and patterns particularly visible in endurance riding and dressage warm-up wear. Although traditionalists may decry their use, durable fabrics have become substitutes for leather in saddles, bridles, halters, and other equine wear.

The new age has reached the horse world in the form of alternative therapies and medications. Massage, acupuncture and other types of physical manipulation, as well as herbal and other natural remedies, may have been initially viewed with skepticism, but now they are widely accepted as preventive and curative tools.

New technologies have affected the way we get our information. Often as important in research as books and magazines, computers give us access to the Internet, which, in turn, has opened up a worldwide network of resources. To learn about training techniques, to find horse show results, or vacation possibilities, or to join in conversations in chat rooms, just log on to the Web.

New approaches have even changed the way we buy and receive products. When this book was assembled more than twenty years ago, resources included only a handful of tack-shop catalogs because, as nearly as we compilers could discover, that's all there were. Now hundreds of stores present their wares that way, and some have begun to do so via the Internet. Thanks to overnight shipping services, catalogs are a very popular way to get tack, apparel and other supplies. There's also been an increase in shops that offer the


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User Review - Flag as inappropriate

Horses the author Steven D. Price & so om e.t.c have worked to make a great book about horses.I of course are one of the people that appreciate and love HORSES! they are well mannered animals as long as you understand them.Horses are nothing but servants they all say(not everyone thinks that) but just learn they are LOVABLE animals so OPEN YOUR EYES!!!!!!!!! 

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

A gentleman wouldn't take up space on the USET for 20 years. He'd let some young riders have a chance.


Stable Management
Routine Preventive Care
Special Medical Problems
Equestrian Activities

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About the author (1998)

Steven D. Price, Editorial Director, is the author of several books about horses and an avid fan of riding and other equestrian-related pursuits. He lives in New York City.

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