Saturday, July 14, 2007

A short note on reason v. emotion

Emotion is what makes you have an immediate reaction like "What a beautiful horse!" No matter how much you know, you may continue to have this reaction to a horse who appeals to you on some intangible level.

It is also what makes us look at our own horses and think they are beautiful no matter where they would place in a halter class. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and the reason is that we're all susceptible to falling in love. Other qualities like a good disposition may make us see beauty where another person would not.

Reason is what makes you take a step back, and realize that the object of your affections has ears like a mule, isn't built to stay sound for anything more strenuous than weekend trail rides, and is so thick-necked that if he tried to set his head properly, he'd suffocate.

Believe me, I have a collection of fugly to rival anybody's living at my house. But they will not be bred. Ever. They have a good home, they are loved and spoiled, but they are not breeding quality. Fugly horses can be great horses but it is much more of a crap shoot for them. Half of what I own was headed to slaughter when I intervened. Beautiful horses with great conformation may wind up in bad situations, but folks, it just doesn't happen anywhere near as often. Please go to your local low end horse auction and see for yourself if you doubt me.

If you can't separate your emotions from your reason, and you are not confident you will remain so wealthy that you can care for every horse you produce until its natural death, then you should not be breeding. If you think I'm just doing this blog merely for the sake of being a big meanie, you totally do not get it. Yes, I'm trying to entertain - but I'm also trying to educate. There is a real problem here, and it exists in most domesticated animals. I could do this blog on dogs just as easily. Plenty of you are willy-nilly breeding those.

Hmm, maybe I'll do that next.