Preview: Dr. Jim Heird: What to Look for in Conformation
Is selecting a horse to buy an art or a science? If you ask internationally renowned equine scholar and AQHA judge, Dr. Jim Heird, he’ll likely tell you while there are always exceptions to the rule, sticking to ratios will help you to narrow the odds when looking for a horse. Dr. Heird explains what those ratios are to make it easier to assess a horse’s conformation. He also clears up some commonly held misconceptions about conformation.
Dr. Heird demystifies the process of assessing conformation by breaking it down into three main areas: balance, structural correctness and adequate muscling. He explains how to use ratios over different parts of the horse's body to determine its conformation.
Dr. Heird looks at three more horses, an older gelding, a young mare and an older mare which has had success but also suffered from many issues. He explains how there are tell-tale signs in conformation that can indicate future problems or soundness in a horse. He also talks about the muscling differences, if any, between a gelding and stallion.