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IRISH HUNTERS, AND THE BREEDING OP GOOD
TO GIVE A BALL 104
TO GIVE A DRENCH, 105
THE PULSE, 109
DISEASES OF THE HEAD AND RESPIRATORY ORGANS, 109
DISEASES OF THE DIGESTIVE AND URINARY ORGANS, 120
DISEASES OF THE FEET AND LEGS, . . . 127
LOTIONS, PURGES, BLISTERS, ETC., . . . 158
DRAWING COVER, .... frontispiece.
THE HACK, ..... paye 4
THE WEIGHT-CARRYING HUNTER, . . „ 6
RIDING AT IT, ... „ 53
THE PROPER FORM, .... „ 95
PREPARATORY CANTER, . „ 99
A Few words only of observation would I make on this subject.* Palpably our horses, especially racers and hunters, are degenerating in size and power, owing mainly, it is to be feared, to the parents being selected more for the reputation they have gained as winners carrying feather-weights, than for any symmetrical development or evidence of enduring power under the weight of a man. We English might take a useful lesson in selecting parental stock from the French, who reject our theory of breeding from animals simply because they have reputation in the racing calendars, and who breed from none but those which have shape and poioer, as well as blood and performance, to recommend them. They are also particular to avoid using for stud purposes such animals as may exhibit indications of any constitutional unsoundness.
* It, however, is treated more fully in a new section, page 93, which, at the request of many readers, and in consequence of its increasing interest to a large portion of the community, has been added to this edition.
In selecting an animal, the character of the work for which he is required should be taken into consideration. For example, in choosing a hack, you will consider whether he is for riding or for draught. In choosing a hunter, you must bear in mind the peculiar nature of the country he will have to contend with.
A horse should at all times have sufficient size and power for the weight he has to move. It is an act of cruelty to put a small horse, be his courage and breeding ever so good, to carry a heavy man or draw a heavy load. With regard to colour, some sportsmen say, and with truth, that "a good horse can't be a bad colour, no matter what his shade." Objection may, however, be reasonably made to pie-balls, skew-balls, or creamcolour, as being too conspicuous,—moreover, first-class animals of these shades are rare; nor are the roan or mouse-coloured ones as much prized as they should be.
Bay, brown, or dark chestnuts,* black or grey horses, are about the most successful competitors in the market, and may be preferred in the order in which they are here enumerated. Very light chestnut, bay, and white horses are said to be irritable in temper and delicate in constitution.t
* The French dealers of the present day choose, for gentlemen's hack-horses, chestnuts with legs white half-way up, causing the action to look more remarkable. "There's no accounting for taste."
+ It is to be remarked of bays, mouse-colours, and chestnuts, having a streak of a darker colour over the backbone from mane to tail (which sometimes, as with the donkey, crosses the shoulder)