Every Horse Owner’s Friend: Deb Harper

Every Horse Owner’s Friend:  Deb Harper

Right…I know…my last post was supposed to be about the amazing work Deb Harper, natural horse trainer, does, and I ended up talking about so many other things.  Deb Harper  graciously allowed me to spend one full day and one half with her horses in Abbotsford, British Columbia.  Now understand:  I grew up with horses here in Quebec.  My middle brother taught me to ride (Western) and there wasn’t a horse I couldn’t ride, including our humongous stallion, Tornado the Third.  My youngest brother and I would ride for hours in the fields owned by B.P. (British Petroleum) and Union Carbide (they didn’t mind); we could ride for two hours in fields and forests, uninterrupted by civilisation…until we’d come up eventually to Henri-Bourassa boulevard and the nearest “Roi de la Patate”, a fast-food outlet of the era, offering steamed hot dogs and French fries, poutine…that sort of, um, brainfood.  We could stop for a rest, unsaddle and we and the horses would just lie down and chill…no reason to hobble or tie up our friends:  we were all just hangin’.  We were there together, just enjoying the place and the day. 

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Linus at the CHHAPS Pacific Canadian Horse Show 2011

Linus at the CHHAPS Pacific Canadian Horse Show 2011

My fingers have been hovering over the keyboard for about five minutes now, much like the scene in You’ve Got Mail in which Tom Hanks ponders how to explain his no-show on his date with Meg Ryan.  I was so privileged to be part of the Pacific Canadian Horse Show in Maple Ridge, British Columbia that my gratitude has all but rendered me mute. Everyone was warm, welcoming, helpful–and that was just the people.  The horses were, well, breathtaking, and since my booth was less than five feet from the shed-rows, you can easily guess where my heart led my feet, again and again and again.  I couldn’t get enough of these superb horses, each one a credit to the Canadian breed in looks and temperament.  All the owners and riders were very good about letting me pet, kiss and generally bask in the energy and beauty of their horses, and everyone graciously tolerated all my questions–and dumb and wordless staring, which I did a lot of.  Even while there, I was very much aware how different this Show and this group of people were from those at other Event and Competition shows I’ve attended.  

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