2012 Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge

Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge – We’re Accepting Applications

The Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge is a competition in which volunteer foster homes and professional trainers work with a Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society foster horse for three months (starting in mid-July) and will compete for awards as they demonstrate their rescue horse’s abilities and training progress in the Challenge at the Bluebonnet Horse Expo on October 20, 2012.

The goals of the Challenge are to:

· Introduce the public to talented rescue horses

· Showcase the training abilities of Bluebonnet foster homes

· Produce horses who are ready to go to work for their adopters

The competition is open to any BEHS member who applies to foster and is approved, as well as professional trainers whose property is inspected and approved. The competition has four categories: professional trainer, foster horse under saddle, foster horse in hand, and youth. Monetary prizes are awarded in each category.

Deadline is NOW.  If you are interested in participating in the 2012 Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge, submit an application. You can read the complete rules and more information below.

Sponsors Needed for 2012 Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge

The Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge is put on by Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society, a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to improving the lives of horses and other equines by educating and helping owners, assisting law enforcement agencies, rehabilitating abused horses and placing them into safe, permanent homes.

The goal of the Training Challenge is to help get training for the horses of Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society to not only make them more adoptable – but also to show the world that rescue horses can do anything “regular” horses can do.

The human competitors in the Training Challenge donate their skills and time to train the horses, and they also donate the costs of caring for their equine partner (hay, grain, tack, etc.).

We’re inviting you to become a Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge Sponsor by either donating goods or money to the program. Sponsors enable us to put on the best possible Rescue Horse Training Challenge, awarding greater prizes and attracting more participants to help more horses gain the skills they need to find forever homes.

Become a sponsor.

Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge Rules and Information

More info about the Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge is available at http://www.bluebonnethorseexpo.com/blog/challenge/

In 2009, we launched the Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge – and so far it is very successful! Horses who participate in the Challenge are often adopted at the Bluebonnet Horse Expo or shortly afterwards. Too often we hear that horses in rescues are “used up” or “useless” and the Challenge lets us show just how wrong those claims are. The Challenge also gives foster homes and professional trainers a chance to show off their training skills

The Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge is a competition in which volunteer foster homes and professional trainers work with a Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society foster horse for three months (starting in mid-July) and will compete for awards as they demonstrate their rescue horse’s abilities and training progress in the Challenge at the Bluebonnet Horse Expo on October 20, 2012.

The goals of the Challenge are to:

· Introduce the public to talented rescue horses

· Showcase the training abilities of Bluebonnet foster homes

· Produce horses who are ready to go to work for their adopters

The competition is open to any BEHS member who applies to foster and is approved, as well as professional trainers whose property is inspected and approved. If you are not currently an approved foster home or BEHS member, become a member and complete a fostering application and we’ll get you set up to go.

The Bluebonnet Fostering Coordinator and the Challenge organizers will select a pool of eligible horses. Participants will apply to compete in the Challenge by July 1, 2012 and will be able to list their top three choices of horses to prepare for the Challenge. BEHS foster homes may compete in the foster division with a foster horse already in their possession as long as no professional trainers have handled the horse in the six months preceding the Challenge Competition (April February-July 2012). If you wish to compete with a foster horse already in your possession, note that on your application.

Horses will be assigned on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. Each participant will be responsible for picking up his or her horse from its foster home between July 1 and July 15, 2012.

Each eligible horse will come with a current, negative Coggins and have current vaccinations. His/her previous foster home will also complete an evaluation sheet assessing the horse’s abilities and training to the best of the foster home’s ability.

When the participant picks up his/her horse, he/she will have one week to turn in an evaluation worksheet to the Challenge organizers. He/she will have up until the competition on October 20, 2012 to work with the horse.

The Challenge will include the following divisions:

* Professional trainer – anyone who receives remuneration training services. Professional trainers must compete under saddle. * Foster horse In hand – This category is open to both novice and experienced foster homes. Horses will be shown without a rider (in hand) but may be saddled. * Foster horse under saddle – This category is open to both novice and experienced foster homes. Horses will be shown under saddle (with a rider). Horse may be shown in a rope halter, bosal, hackamore or snaffle bridle. * Youth – participants 17 and under as of January 1, 2012. Youth will compete in hand only (horses may be saddled but cannot be ridden).

If a foster home chooses, he/she may pay training fees to a professional trainer for a Challenge-eligible horse. That horse and trainer will then compete in the professional trainer category.

Horses in the foster home in hand, foster home under saddle and youth categories may attend a maximum of ten training sessions, riding lessons or clinics with a professional trainer during Challenge training period (July-October 2012). The Rescue Horse Training Challenge participant should handle or ride the horse for the majority of the time spent in those training sessions, lessons or clinics.

At the Challenge, all horses will be allowed seven minutes to complete an obstacle course and will be allowed an additional five minutes for a freestyle presentation. During the obstacle course, each horse/rider or horse/handler combination will receive a maximum of three tries per obstacle. If the horse and rider/handler do not successfully complete the obstacle within three tries, they will receive a score of zero for that obstacle. Horse and rider/handler pairs will also receive a 0 for any obstacle they do not complete before the time minute period for the obstacle course elapses.

The freestyle presentation is an opportunity for the trainer/foster home to showcase the horse’s abilities, training level and aptitude. The use of music and/or costumes is strongly encouraged during the freestyle.

The contest will be judged by a panel of equine professionals. Each horse and trainer or foster home combination’s total score will be based on:

* Improvement from initial assessment * Condition of horse * Obstacle course * Presentation/freestyle

Scores will be tabulated. The highest scoring horse and foster home or trainer combination will be named Division Champions. The highest overall score will be named Grand Champion and the second highest overall score will be named Reserve Grand Champion.

The horses who participate in the Challenge will not be available for adoption until the end of the Challenge. All horses will go up for adoption the day of the contest. Horses who are not broke to ride will be offered for adoption for $300. Horses who are broke to ride will be offered for adoption for $750. Pre-approved adopters may adopt and take home their horse after the Challenge. Horses will be offered for adoption on a first-come, first-served basis with preference given to pre-approved adopters. Adopters must allow their horse to stay throughout the end of the Challenge so the trainer or foster home may finish the competition.

Additional rules:

* All participants must be professional trainers or current members of Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society in good standing. * Foster horses may not be handled/trained by any other individual or trainer from July 1 – October 20, 2012 * All foster homes who compete must sign a contract stating that they agree to foster the horse for three months after the Challenge is complete (unless he/she is adopted beforehand) or forfeit their winnings. This rule does not apply to professional trainers. If you prefer, we will make arrangements to transfer your horse into a foster home after the Challenge is completed if he/she is not adopted. * Competitors will be responsible for the cost of feeding their horse, shavings/bedding, and farrier work during the Challenge and the foster period after the Challenge. Bluebonnet Equine Humane Society will reimburse $10 of every farrier visit, paste de-wormers, pre-approved veterinary care, and pre-approved corrective farrier work and medications. * There must be at least two people signed up per division for that division to be offered.

Prizes:

* Professional Trainer Category: $300 * Foster Horse Under Saddle Category: $200 * Foster Home in Hand: $100 * Youth: $100 * Reserve Grand Champion: $200 * Grand Champion: $400

Amounts may change as Bluebonnet receives additional sponsorship money for the Challenge. We are looking for sponsors for the Bluebonnet Rescue Horse Training Challenge – you can become a sponsor here: http://www.bluebonnethorseexpo.com/blog/challenge/#becomeasponsor http://cts.vresp.com/c/?BluebonnetEquineHuma/56a6754727/a7be1ac9c9/013ecbc6dc

Learn more or download an application to compete at http://www.bluebonnethorseexpo.com/blog/challenge/ http://cts.vresp.com/c/?BluebonnetEquineHuma/56a6754727/a7be1ac9c9/f257f9c4e6

Only sound and healthy horses will be used in the Challenge. Additionally, all participants must be approved as foster homes for BEHS. Follow-up visits will be conducted to make sure the horses are doing well in their foster homes and with their training.