In the Saddle: For the love of an Appaloosa

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Since getting my baby Appaloosa foal last year, I've joined the British Appaloosa Society, with whom my spotty boy is registered with and it appears I'm not the only one dotty over my spotty.

The British Appaloosa Society is the oldest Appaloosa organisation in the UK with its aim to preserve, promote and protect the British Appaloosa horse and I have never felt part of such a fantastic bunch of people.

My friend Kirsty (we met through the society and she's been over to meet the horsey gang) and Pip told me they had always wanted a spotted horse from being young, as did Stephanie Arrowsmith after seeing them in a horse breed book as a little girl (she ended up breeding two foals) and Joanne and Lorraine told me they fell in love from watching the old cowboy and Indian films as children.

Jade Miller fell in love with the breed after meeting her friend's Appaloosa, whilst Sue Coleman confessed her passion began when she met a little foal who wouldn't leave her side. Needless to say she bought the foal who later became her 'horse of a lifetime' after 24 wonderful years together.

Appaloosas are real characters, as I am finding out myself. Just like Sue's story of the baby foal nudging her Eve Bateman told me after an Appaloosa she was riding as a trial for sale nudged her (and wouldn't leave her alone) she also bought him. Likewise Charlotte met her spotty after trying many horses for sale and fell instantly in love.

The Appaloosa breed is an athletic, colourful and willing riding horse. They are more than a spotted coat with generations of recorded pedigree behind them. They have a broad head, compact body and a smooth action and are courageous horses dating back to prehistoric times. If you'd like to find out more about the society (or their shows) you can go online to www.appaloosa.org.uk or check out their Facebook page.