Martin Muehlstaetter demonstrates he can abuse a horse

At the FEI World Reining final warm-up, Martin Muehlstaetter took to this horse in full public viewing with his spurring, sawing and gouging like a possessed man. The excitement of a major show, the overwhelming desire to win at all costs, sees the horse suffer to a level that should have demanded his immediate dismounting of the animal and removal from the show. Cleary unable to rationalize right from wrong, this man now travels the world giving clinics on reining horse training and is upheld by the NRHA as one of the Top 20 Trainers in the world.

Is this what it takes to train a reiner or is this a person that is incapable of controlling his emotions? Is this an association that condones horse abuse to keep the entertainment rolling and trainers flowing the cash through their tills?

It would seem that at these FEI world championships the world became aware of the horse abuse that has been occuring hidden away in niche show pens and barns for many a long year.

What actions are considered horse abuse? Click here to find out more.

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5 replies
  1. Shelley
    Shelley says:

    Really!??? I saw absolutely no abuse in this video! The thing is, is that people like you lose their credibility when they complain about non-abuse situations like this. I was attentively reading your articles and agreeing with you until I saw this video. Now i can’t figure out whether your just one of those types that complain about EVERYTHING, or if you legitimately know what your talking about! We desperately need watchdogs in the reining industry. But, they need to know what they are looking at and talking about! They do NOT need to jump the gun and complain about non-issues, or else they will lose their more educated audience who know the sport inside and out. Please be more realistic with what you call abuse in the future. Other than that, I appreciate what you are trying to do.

  2. Animal Welfare
    Animal Welfare says:

    The training standards applied in this video were deemed abusive by a number of his peers at top level. The matter was taken up with the FEI and they were issued warnings for abuse and misconduct. The NRHA sat on its hands. You may want to consider this in your personal benchmarks of management of your own horses and your associates.

  3. Connie
    Connie says:

    I did not see abuse. I saw schooling and guidance. Yes he took ahold of the horse, but not jerking or gouging with spurs. a lot of the time the spurs are not even in contact. If this was a horse that did not know its job, then this would be extreme. But the horse clearly has high level training and the temperament to do these drills. Believe me I have seen abuse and know the difference. The trouble is a lot of people that have no idea of what they are talking about make false claims. These people cause harm to good trainers reputations and their professions.

    • Animal Welfare
      Animal Welfare says:

      You are on your own as the rest of the world have all agreed it is abuse. We pity your horses if this is mild and you have seen worse. Sad day for horses.

      • Brad
        Brad says:

        Absolutely no abuse in this video. I putty your intelligence in thinking this horse was abused in any way. Go hug a tree


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