October 1, 2002
Shelbyville, Tennessee 37162-1007

Dear Ms. Parsons,
After reading the letter from the 29th Annual Ozark Festival Charity Horse Show committee, I just had to write a letter. I have written many letters to you, but I have never discussed Dr. Guedron.

My husband and I have attended several shows this season with Dr. Guedron present. Most trainers do not wish to participate in a show when he is present. Harlan was upset that I did not want to show my horse. Finally, I convinced him to go to the inspection area and see Dr. Guedron in action. It did not take long for him to understand why I did not want my horse subjected to his inspection. We have also seen Dr. Price at several shows. All of the adjectives that have been used to describe them are true!!! It appears that it is their intention to destroy the walking horse industry. They can be seen laughing and talking when they are suppose to be doing their job. A job, that I might add, is paid for with all of our tax dollars. I agree with the Horse Protection Act, but it should include all horse related activities. Our show horses are the most pampered and well cared for horses in the world. If they are sick or need new shoes or anything else, we see that they get the best that we can provide!

It is our personal opinion that our tax dollars can be used in a more productive manner. Why are four to five inspectors and a federal marshal needed at one show? What a waste! Just think what we could do with more money for medical research, less costly medical care for the elderly, eradication of fire ants and mosquitoes. You could go on and on with the list for better uses of federal money.

Now that I am on a roll, lets get to the issue of judges. It is not only my opinion, but the opinion of others, JUDGES DO NOT NEED TO BE ACTIVE TRAINERS. It is still very evident that the “good ole buddy” system is alive and strong. Why cannot the judge just tie the best horses and not the riders, or riders of certain trainers, or trainers that have previously placed them good at an earlier show?

Between the USDA inspectors and bad judging, many have gotten out of the horse show business. There have been several that have just started riding trail horses instead of showing! Harlan and I enjoy trail riding with our friends, but we also enjoy seeing out horses show. A lot of time and money is put into getting a horse to the show ring. It is a great feeling to see a horse show that you have raised from a colt. A lot of people are getting out of the breeding business, because there is a better market for pleasure horses than show horses.

ALL OF US need to stand up and be counted. It will never change until we do!!

Thank you for reading my letter. Please feel free to print it, if you think the topic is of concern to others.

Yours truly,
Ann and Harlan Hatcher