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365 Days in Horse Country – Competitive Cow Cutting

Blog by Michael Stuart Webb | October 24th, 2013

365 Days in Horse Country – Competitive Cow Cutting


The sport of cutting cattle is as colourful as its origins on the wild North American Frontier.  Cutting is the singling out of a designated cow from the herd of approximately thirty head of cattle.  The horse and rider team separates the cow from the group and prevents it from returning to the other cows.  Not as easy as it sounds!

Cutting is an exciting sport that really gets you adrenaline pumping.  You need a horse with “cow Sense” to participate in this sport, because the horse does most of the work on him own.  Quarter Horses, Paints, and Appaloosas are the breeds most often seen in cutting competitions, although Arabians and Morgans can also be good at it.

Cutting events require that a rider remove a cow from the herd and keep it away from the rest of the cow from the herd for a full two minutes.  Horses are judged on their abilities to do the job without interference from the riders.