What Will the Future of the Horse Industry Be Like?
This article is being released instead of a basic news release to
promote a new book titled: "The Ultimate Equine Legal and Business
Advisor," By George G. Johnson, Jr. and Tracy D. Dowson. We
hope that it both piques your interest and answers some of your
childhood memories with your horse may tell more about your age
than looking at your teeth. While some people remember the old plow
horses at their grandparents, others will remember the popularity
of the Appaloosa horse in the late 1960's. Many babyboomers remember
the large classes in breed and 4-H shows and these boomers are aging,
still riding and showing and creating a demand for more comforts
like horse trailer's with living quarters. The youth of today may
have memories of all those release forms that their parents have
to sign or events being cancelled by outbreaks of diseases like
world around us has changed drastically in the past ten years and
these changes are like a great rolling snowball that increases in
size as it barrels straight towards us. Changes on all fronts including:
biotechnology, legislation, public opinion, access to information,
land development and the actual manner in which horses are used.
babyboomers are still riding and spending lots of money on their
horse activities. However, you may wonder exactly how it measures
up? The economic impact of the horse industry is large by any standards.
According to the American Horse Council's 2002 Horse Industry Handbook,
there are 6.9 million horses in the United States including commercial
and recreational horses. The horse industry directly produces good
and services of $25.3 billion and has a total impact of $112.1 billion
on U.S. gross domestic product.
industry's contribution to the U.S. GDP is greater than the motion
picture services, railroad transportation, furniture and fixtures
manufacturing, and tobacco product manufacturing industries. Check
your state's horse council for your state's horse industry contribution.
reports the value of the equine industry to be between $2.1 billion
and $4.7 billion, according to the Equine Research Center of Canada.
to thirty years ago, we never had horse councils, lobbyists or some
of the other aspects of the horse industry that we have today. The
topics frequently discussed in horse councils include: land use
issues, specifically trail access; development and loss of feed/pasture
land, and unfavorable zoning. We have entered a time when every
horse owner should belong to their local or state horse council
and keep informed regarding issues that will eventually affect them.
A future trend will be that horse owners will need to be even more
experts agree that land loss is the most threatening obstacle to
the horse industry, but perhaps an even greater threat may be the
lack of interest and involvement among the younger generation. Young
people today are interested in extreme sports, thrive on movies
like Warren Miller's ski movies and buy sport utility vehicles.
I've always thought that horse events had the intense drama and
entertainment value of any other sport. With even more variety -
everything from rodeo, to racing and jumping to endurance riding.
We just haven't been marketing it very well. Marketing to the general
public will have to rise to the professional level of other sporting
events. Other marketing outreach programs within breed organizations
include incentive programs and awards for outside (the arena) activities.
Being able to obtain information and horse related products via
the internet has helped both babyboomers and the generation X'ers
pursue horse activities.
opinion will shape the future of the industry also. I recently read
an article in the Oprah magazine regarding the therapeutic value
of horses. This is a good example of how horses benefit our society
as a whole. In contrast, when the cameras dwell on the accidents
in show jumping or horse racing, like the camera-work you would
expect from a demolition derby, the public becomes disheartened.
Horse owners want to ride their horses on open space or government
trails, to show or race their horses in competition and animal rights
activists and others are watching. The public is becoming more involved
with horses simply by having the opportunity to vote on issues that
big change is that the number of "backyard horse owners"
is decreasing while boarding stable customers is on the rise. As
a past president of a horse council, I can tell you from experience
that landowners are more politically active. Boarders tend to expect
the boarding stable owner or manager to go to horse council meetings
and write their congressman regarding issues. Activism will need
to be a part of the future for horse owners just to keep the benefits
that we now take for granted.
our society is becoming more sophisticated and litigious. The average
horse owner buying a horse will need to understand the legal ramifications
and limitations. Not to mention buying horse property and developing
proper contracts. Most horse owners know that horse ownership is
accompanied by certain legal responsibilities. Obviously, an owner
must provide adequate feed and water to their horse(s). They must
be confined in a secure manner where they cannot escape onto either
the lands of others or onto public rights-of-way. Horses must also
be protected from known hazards, must not be abused or mistreated
and must also receive necessary veterinary treatment to keep them
free of obvious pain. These are commonly known responsibilities
of horse owners.
these requirements have deeper consequences and obligations. In
the area of providing adequate feed and water for horses responsible
owners must be sure that both the food and water that is being provided
is adequate both in quantity and quality. Moldy hay and contaminated
water will not satisfy this requirement. Owners should know what
their horses are eating and drinking, and should also be sure that
they are receiving adequate amounts to keep them healthy under the
circumstances. For instance, horses that are seldom ridden or used
need less nourishment than horses being used on a regular basis,
but regardless of the use have certain minimum dietary requirements.
of the responsibilities of horse ownership run far below the surface
of these stated requirements. The privilege of horse ownership is
accompanied by legal responsibilities that are varied and deep.
Horse owners will face many issues in the future and to be best
prepared for these situations, owners will want to be armed with
the best information possible.
Ultimate Equine Legal and Business" advisor has been developed
to assist every horse owner at some point in their lives. It is
written in a simple, straight-forward manner with every effort made
to make the reading informative and enjoyable. It retails for $36
plus shipping. Inquiries may be directed to Pica Publishing 800279-2001
ext. 209, TracyPica@aol.com
the authors: George G. Johnson is an attorney licensed to practice
in Colorado and Texas. He has since passed the reins of the Johnson
Law firm down to his two sons and began a new career with the International
Arabian Horse Association as their Judges and Stewards Commissioner.
Tracy D. Dowson was raised on a boarding and training facility,
graduated from CSU with a degree in Technical Journalism and Public
Relations, and has worked as a newspaper editor, copywriter and
publishing company manager before starting Pica Publishing.
Book Title: The Ultimate Equine Legal and Business Advisor
Authors: George G. Johnson, Jr., and Tracy D. Dowson
Specifications: 298 pages, paperback, $36.00 plus shipping ($2 media
rate or $4 Priority)
1. Forms of Equine Businesses
2. The Business Plan Defined
3. Financing an Equine Operation
4. Buying Horse Property
5. Employer Responsibilities
6. When, Why and How to Computerize Your Horse Records
7. Equine Businesses and Taxes
8. Bookkeeping Procedures
9. Collection of Debts
10. Brand Inspection Laws and Horse Ownership
12. Liability of Horsemen
13. Product Liability
14. Animal Abuse and Neglect Laws
15. Horse Trailering
16. Estate Planning for Horse Owners
17. Insurance Considerations
18. The Dynamics of a Lawsuit
20. Public Relations
22. Customer Service
23. How to Select an Attorney
book could be used as a textbook for an Equine Business course,
like the ones I taught at several Universities during my teaching
career. It bring under one cover the myriad of things that must
be considered by horsepersons in today's complex and litigious society."
From the Forward written by Doug Butler, Phd, CJF FWCF