Open Spear Ranch in Melville, Montana has provided me with the opportunity to work with quality horses that have a great disposition, athletic ability, and superior genetics. The foals are born and raised on the open range near the Crazy Mountains. The importance of the first year of life cannot be emphasized enough to the physical and mental development of these young athletes.
Since a horse cannot see straight in front of them the brain relies on the messages from the frog to adjust the tension on muscles that are protecting the joints. The natural wear of the hoof on the Montana range wears off the early foal hoof wall, produces a wide functional frog, and a strong sole surface for protection. These foals can travel across varied terrain with effortless precision in their stride. The soft tissues in the hoof are often neglected in discussion about the maturing horse. The digital cushion is a fibrocartliage structure that helps to protect the navicular bone, coffin bone, and support the leg in stride. The durability and quality of the digital coushion is related to the stimulation it receives early in life and a genetic component. The widest portion of the frog is full of sensory nerves that send information to the brain about where the body is in orientation to itself and the surface it is on, proprioception.
Living in a herd allows the foals to live and behave as a horse, grazing and maintaining locomotion that inspires social skills and awareness of the open county. I take my understanding of equine herd skills to work with the weanlings on the first day of training. The disposition and upbringing by the mares inspires a foal that leads down the road with willingness, nice forward travel, and acceptance of training on the first day. The corpus callosum is underdeveloped in horses. This is where the right and left cerebral hemispheres of the brain are connected. Stimulation of the right and left sides of the brain occurs as the foal navigates through the range and is continued with equal training of both sides from day one that will carry into their future training program.
It is a pleasure to be invited as a trainer for Open Spear Ranch Quarter Horses. Your purchase of an Open Spear Ranch raised horse will have advantages in hoof and bone development, balance, coordination, and ability to accept a variety of training for competition, working ranch horse, trail horse, or pleasure.
Dr. Katie Cosgriff DC, IVCA, Fourth generation farrier
PO Box 644
Big Timber, MT 59011
Dr. Cosgriff is a licensed chiropractor, certified by the International Veterinary Chiropractic Association along with bachelor degrees in human biology and animal science. Being raised on a cattle ranch allowed for appreciation of a working ranch horse and involvement with show horses in English and Western disciplines. As a farrier Dr. Cosgriff has worked with performance horses, race horses, gaited horses, and Warmbloods. Along with shoeing racehorses Dr. Cosgriff rode thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racehorses as a jockey. Advanced education in equine studies includes behavior, biomechanics, hoof, and ankle courses. The appreciation of natural horsemanship is utilized in training the Open Spear Ranch horses along with allowing the personality of each foal to be characterized.