Celebrating the Lives of Horses

Equine Guelph has announced that Intercity Insurance will be sponsoring Hoofprints, a new memorial program celebrating the lives of horses. Hoofprints is an online initiative created to remember and honour the memory of deceased horses through stories and pictures.

“Hoofprints provides grieving horse owners a positive means to cope with the devastating loss and a loving way to remember horses through sharing their memories with other horse lovers – folks who care and understand,” says Gayle Ecker, director of Equine Guelph.

Equine Guelph invites those who have lost a horse (recently or in the past) to pay tribute by sending a photo and message of remembrance along with a memorial gift in the name of the horse.

Photo Courtesy: Susan M Carter

To honour your horse or to view the legacies of other cherished horses, go to http://www.equineguelph.ca/donations/hoofprints.php

Gifts to Equine Guelph help make a difference in the lives of horses through the funding of equine research, education, performance, healthcare and industry development.

~ Henrietta Coole

Smart Little Lena: 1979-2010

When we heard about the passing of Smart Little Lena on Monday, I posted it, along with a wonderful video tribute, on Western Horse Review’s Facebook page, and many people immediately responded with heartfelt comments.

At 31-years-of-age, it’s unlikely the stallion, though reportedly in “good shape” at the time of the stroke which led to his euthanization, could have been much longer for this earth. Hence, the news came not as a shock, but instead, simply shared sadness among horsepeople, at the passing of a tremendous legend.

Indeed, has the performance horse world been altered through this legendary stallion and his progeny. Considered perhaps the broodmare sire of the century in the western horse world, it’s hard to come up with many comparables. Or, to contemplate a western performance sport his bloodlines have not influenced.

I’m grateful today, for the SLL blood in the pedigrees of the horses we own in this family. They have done us well.

Smart Little Lena was bred by Hanes Chatham and shown by the late Bill Freeman to a championship in the 1982 NCHA Futurity, followed by a win in the 1983 Super Stakes and a co-championship with Peppymint Twist in the 1983 NCHA Derby.

Following his competitive career, he spent most of his life at Manion Ranch, near Aubrey, Texas.

Be sure to view the touching video of Bill Freeman and Smart Little Lena on our Facebook Page.

CD Olena Dies

CD Olena: 1991 - 2010

The great cutting horse sire, CD Olena, ranked #3 among all-time leading living sires of cutting horse money earners, died August 6 at the age of 19.

According to Sally Harrison’s cutting blog:

“He was okay at ten on Thursday night and on Friday morning (August 6), we found him peacefully lying in his stall dead,” said David Hartman, DVM, who had leased CD Olena from Bobby Pidgeon last year to stand at Hartman’s Equine Reproduction Center in Whitesboro, Texas.

“He seemed in good health and was still very fertile. It was a horribly sad day here. I had become very fond of the horse and was looking forward to many more years with him.”

Dr. Fairfield Bain of Equine Sports Medicine and Surgery in Weatherford, Texas performed the autopsy and determined the cause of death as an aortic aneurysm.

The great Canadian connection to this sorrel colt by Doc O’Lena began when Bobby Pidgeon purchased the stallion for his Bar H Ranche near Weatherford, Texas in the early ’90’s. Soon after brothers Winston and Paul Hansma established themselves at the ranch and the rest is history.

The brothers became accomplished trainers and showmen, and much of that success came from showing the offspring of both CD Olena and Dual Pep, the two leading stallions standing at the Bar H.

Winston relates in Sally’s blog that he knew as soon as he began CD Olena as a two-year-old that the colt was special.

CD Olena won the 1994 NCHA Futurity  and the NCHA Derby. He also won the semi-finals of the NCHA Super Stakes, and placed fifth in the finals. He was named NCHA Horse of the Year in 1995.

Winston Hansma and partner Danny Motes, now own one of CD Olena’s most notable offspring, 2006 NCHA World Champion Stallion, CD Lights, an impressive stallion which is incidentally nominated to the Canadian Supreme.

CD Olena was buried at the Bar H Ranche arena where he and so many of his sons and daughters were started on cattle.

Yet, as Harrison states in her blog post:

“. . . the end of one chapter leads to the beginning of another. Paul Hansma has leased Bar H Ranche to operate as his training facility; CD Lights is proving to be a leading performance sire for Winston Hansma; Dr. Hartman has an ample supply of CD Olena’s frozen semen; and all the owners of CD Olena daughters will now hold them even more dear.”

Read all of Harrison’s post here.