EquiStaff - Welcome to our chat with Quarter Horse breeder, Ann Myers. Myers will discuss current breeding trends, breeding standards, and stallion promotion. Based in Ashland, Ohio, Myers bred Zips Chocolate Chip--a champion Western pleasure Quarter Horse, sired by Quarter Horse legend, Zippo Pine Bar. Zips Chocolate Chip is trained by Cleve Wells, and currently stands in Texas. Ann has built a successful breeding program that has produced horses earning 7965 AQHA points including 58 ROMS, 38 Superiors and over $137,000 in AQHA Incentive Fund earnings. Learn more about Zips Chocolate Chip at www.zipschocolatechip.com.
AnnMyers - Hi everyone!
AnnMyers - Thank you for inviting me tonight--I'm flattered to be included. I hope I can answer your questions to your satisfaction--we'll see as the night goes on. I'm a little bit of a blonde, so be ware!
Ruffian - Ann, catch us up on what the QH breeder is looking for these days?
Ruffian - I guess that's a huge question, but I can remember when the stocky, "bulldog" QH was the standard, then came the influence of racing, and the whole picture changed. Where is it now?
AnnMyers - Ruffian, for the show QHs--there are many facets--they've gotten so specialized, it's really about what type of show horse you're looking for. The English horses have gotten really tall and lanky and the Western horses are still smaller and shorter coupled, and the halter horses are like body builders. There's no real definitive answer to that one.
coralynb - Big difference in builds since Wiltie and Howdy days right Ann?
AnnMyers - Coralynb-Yep!
Horsegirl - I'm in college and they have both kinds!
AnnMyers - Horsegirl--what do you mean by both kinds?
Horsegirl - The tall and lanky and the short and stocky.
AnnMyers - Does your school have a breeding program?
Horsegirl - Not for the QH. They use to.
AnnMyers - The different types don't have to mean there's a division in the QH world. At the high end shows--like Congress and the World Show--you see more specific types.
Horsegirl - They do standardbreds.
AnnMyers - At more local shows, you see more all-around horses. Maybe people are trying to get a bang for their buck--have one horse that can do multiple events. The all-around horses are still very popular.
coralynb - Ann, are you doing any of the showing yourself or are you having only your trainer show your horses? coralyn
AnnMyers - Coralynb--I mostly--in recent years--have been raising the show quality horses, and people have been buying and showing them--and I follow along and give out Chocolate Chip cookies.
AnnMyers - I used to show extensively in the amateur division, but since Zips Chocolate Chip, and having my own baby, I've been too busy to go to the shows every weekend.
Horsegirl - What do you looks for in horse for breeding?
AnnMyers - Now, I've reverted to trail riding around the farm--that's good, too!
Ruffian - What is it about the QH that makes it such an enduring and popular breed? there are so many choices these days, but the QHs rule.
AnnMyers - I've made the full cycle--I grew up in the city and dreamed of having a horse. I just new that's what I wanted. The very first horse I had was one my parents rented for me--for $20 a month, including his tack. The first horse I owned was given to me. That was a Quarter Horse. I was hooked on QHs.
AnnMyers - Horsegirl--I look for a good disposition--that's important to me. Of course, conformation--a sound build. I'd recommend studying general conformation. With the type of horses I breed, I like to have a soft, fluid mover.
AnnMyers - When you watch them perform, they should look like they're walking on a cloud. They shouldn't look like they're shaking the ground when they land.
Horsegirl - That's what we are doing right now in class-Conformation.
AnnMyers - You can't always go on show pedigree or accomplishments. I tell people if you want to breed to Chip, make sure you'd like to have a foal that's exactly like your mare.
coralynb - Chips sire.... was Chip sired by Greg Hinrich's stallion?
AnnMyers - Don't breed a mare that has a fault you don't want in the next generation. The resulting foal should be as good as your mare--and the hope is Zips Chocolate Chip will enhance the foal and make it even better.
AnnMyers - I feel comfortable if people really like their mare. If there are things you hate about your mare, the stallion won't always make a difference. That's what I tell people, then let them decide.
Equisearch - We have several questions that were posted earlier from those who couldn't make the chat. CATHYLH asks:
AnnMyers - Coralnb--Zips Chocolate Chip was sired by Zippo Pine Bar. Zippo Pine Bar was a forerunner of the QH pleasure sires. I call him a legendary sire of pleasure horses.
Equisearch - Ann, how do you feel about the continuation to breed HYPP positive horses and the infiltration of it into other breeds?
AnnMyers - Cathylh--Basically, I'm not in favor of breeding the HYPP horses, but since I'm a performance horse breeder, I don't run into that problem very often. The performance horses that test positive don't sell well--so they cull themselves out.
AnnMyers - The HYPP problem weighs heavier in the halter bred horses. I can't really speak for their continuation to breed them.
AnnMyers - It's easy for me to say not to breed them, but I don't run into that problem often.
AnnMyers - As a note, HYPP is Hyperkalemic Periodic Paralysis is an inherited genetic defect that affects muscle function.
Equisearch - Also, what do you think about the METs? What is to be gained? Will it drive down the prices of top dollar horses by having multiple babies out of top WC horses? Is this so big breeding farms can breed multiples and cull the best for competition? Why
AnnMyers - MET--multiple embryo transfers--I was not in favor of allowing the METs to be registered. However, my experience with MET babies is that it is an expensive way to have a foal. I just don't think everyone's going to jump on the bandwagon--breeding their mares and having multiple embryos registered in the same year--financially, it will get so expensive for them. On the other hand, there are so many things that are special about Chip-you'd hate to see 5 Zips Chocolate Chips born at the same time. He's such an outstanding horse in my mind, and he may not have had the chance to stand out. If you have a lot of great horses at one time, it would dilute them from being so great.
AnnMyers - If I had bred multiple embryos with Chips mom in one year--there would be 5 just like him. He wouldn't be the unique horse he is today. However, he did have full brothers and sisters who had high achievements, and Chip is still the one that shines. They don't all get the same genetic traits.
AnnMyers - The MET registry could almost help a small breeder who has one great mare. That person could make a name for themselves using the one great mare--someone presented that idea to me and that was interesting.
Horsegirl - Is it a lot like cloning?
AnnMyers - I've had two--what I would call--great mares, and it took them almost their lifetime to prove that by breeding.
AnnMyers - Please don't hesitate to ask more questions!
Ruffian - Again, what is it about the QH that makes it such an enduring and popular breed when there are so many breed choices these days?
AnnMyers - Horsegirl--MET isn't cloning--it's like having a litter one by one. It's not the same genetic make-up, you're just having more brothers and sisters.
Horsegirl - Oh okay
AnnMyers - If you ever had a dog have puppies--you know all the puppies have their own personalities. The genes fit together differently.
Horsegirl - I'm going for breeding, so this is helping me!
AnnMyers - Ruffian, I think disposition is a key factor. In general, the QHs are known to be durable. Many varieties of people can get along with QHs--they're good show horses, kids' horses, trail horses. . . .
Sara - I'm going to try to get to the Quarter Horse Congress this month. Any suggestions on what would be best to go to there? If you can only be there a couple of days--
AnnMyers - Sara--everyone loves freestyle reining--but it depends what events will be going on when you're going. There are two arenas with shows going on at the same time. There's plenty to choose from!
EquStaff - Anne, how do you feel about the recent ruling by the APHA about the dual registry?
EquStaff - Won't this pull "paint blood" back into the AQHA and what will the future ramifications be for breeders?
Sara - I can't wait! Maybe I'll come home with a horse . . . .
AnnMyers - The tradeshow is amazing! You'll love to go shopping.
AnnMyers - Sara--That would be great! That's a real possibility.
EquStaff - AQHA is bringing it's trends to APHA and changing APHA's trends to parallel AQHA. As a breeder, what does she think of changing the show trends so they aren't compatable with breed standards?
coralynbus - Ann the old country bumpkin here in Vt is going to leave but hope you can find time to come visit back east soon. hope all is well with your family. Coralyn and Addie
AnnMyers - About dual registry--because I mostly breed QHs, I'm not so tuned into what's going on with Paints. I'm not against breeding QHs and Paints. People have wanted Chips bloodline in the Paints--we've had multiple world champions. I like to see a Paint that looks like a Paint.
AnnMyers - I love seeing a Paint with noticeable white markings. They don't have to be half white--but one you notice is a Paint from a distance. We've had some great Paint mares bred to Zips Chocolate Chip that have produced champions. Most of them have had enough color that they don't look like a QH.
AnnMyers - The bottom line is--I'm not into the politics enough to get into that decision making.
AnnMyers - I don't get to see a lot of the Paint mares we breed Chip to. We do offer a Paint color re-breed. We haven't had to use that re-breed as often as I would have thought. A good percentage of them have color.
AnnMyers - I travel down to see Chip about twice a year. That's the way it's been. I'm from Texas--where he is--so it's like going home!
AnnMyers - Melissa asked if I have a favorite Chip offspring. There are so many great ones! My personal favorite is Chips Hot Chocolate. We own his mother--we raised him. She was a phenomenal producer.
melissarae - 1Hello Ann, I wanted to stop in and say hello, but I am having trouble coming up with a good question
AnnMyers - I did sell him. He's a stallion and is standing now, too. He's a beautiful horse.
AnnMyers - Melissa also asked how it feels to own such a popular horse--If I sit down and truly think about it, it blows me away!
AnnMyers - It was never my plan--it just happened. That's the beauty of the whole thing. If I had planned to have a popular horse, it probably never would have happened.
Eqstaff - The end of the hour is fast approaching, so please ask your final questions.
AnnMyers - It's fun to promote him. That's a whole lot of what I do now. We have a neat Web site. I have a Web master I work with--they know what they're doing. I like designing the ads to go in the QH Journal. I have a lot of fun with the cookie theme. You don't go past people holding cookies and not get a
AnnMyers - That's really a fun thing at Congress. It's nice to lighten the mood when everyone gets so intense
AnnMyers - I go to Congress, the World Show, some of the National Snaffle Bit Association futurities, the AQHA conventions. Besides that, it's so busy staying home raising the foals! I enjoy that.
AnnMyers - We average 6-7 foals a year. I don't have a huge staff working for me. It's a lot of hands on. I have good people here, but I do farm chores, also. I like that. That's what I liked in the beginning.
AnnMyers - I don't think I'll ever have another horse like Chip. I sure have enjoyed what he's done for me. A lot of people dream of having a horse like him and never get one!
AnnMyers - We'd love to have you visit Zips Chocolate Chip at his Web site: www.zipschocolatechip.com--you can play games, too! You can play checkers against Chip.
AnnMyers - We like to make it fun!
Eqstaff - Before we leave, here are some facts about our guest that you may not have realized: In the past twenty years, her breeding program has produced horses with the following honors: 4 World Champions, 8 Reserve World Champions, 4 High Point wins, 4 inductions into the National Snaffle Bit Association Hall of Fame. Her horses have accumulated $148,211 in NSBA earnings. Based in Ashland, Ohio with her husband Phil and son, Rett, Anne's operation also boast the new addition of a double oven kitchen to accommodate all the chocolate chip cookies to promote Chip!
Eqstaff - Check out the October 2002 issue of Horse & Rider on the Quarter Horse Congress where Ann Myers will appear again.
Eqstaff - Thank you for joining us tonight, Anne.
Horsegirl - Is it okay too come visit your farm?
Eqstaff - Remember to return to the Equisearch website for a transcript of the chat and news of our next guest. Good night.
IGottaZip - Hey Ann!
AnnMyers - Hi there!
IGottaZip - I LOVE CHIP!..I own a grandson of Zippo Pine Bar and I just love him
AnnMyers - We love him, too--and appreciate you being a fan.
AnnMyers - Goodnight all! Thanks again.