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Rachel Waddell

A Bit About Me

One of the things I take pride in is my very diverse experience in the horse industry. My parents have always had horses during my lifetime and I remember riding at a very young age. I still distinctly remember the feeling of jealousy that my sister was able to ride on her own and I had to be lead. At 40 years old (in 2023) minus college, that would put my riding and horsemanship experience around 30 plus years.


As a child, my Mom took me to shows almost every weekend. I showed WSCA and 4H, which included pleasure and games classes. At 12 years old, I won a trip to the State 4H Horse Show for pleasure and placed 2nd in English Pleasure. Then I joined Pony Club, which incorporated both riding lessons, ground work, and book learning in all different aspects of horse care. I trained and showed in Dressage and Jumping and competed both in Pony Club “Rallies” and recognized Eventing shows and competed at the National level. Pony Club has well defined standards where the student must test into each level, with both riding skills and knowledge of horse care. I maintain a lot of the standards for my students and teach them so much more than riding.


As an adult, when I returned to MN after college and having my son, Damon, I picked up work at an equine-assisted therapy facility. I have actually worked at 2 different therapy facilities and use some of the same activities learned there, especially for younger students.


Another area that I have gained expertise in is barn management. I have shoveled far too many stalls in my lifetime, but have also been present, thoughtful, communicative, paid attention to detail, talked to a lot of other horse men and women, built relationships, and improved barn conditions. I have had the opportunity to see, hear, learn, and discuss everything that goes on with horses and their riders.


In more recent years, I have become involved in ranch riding, including cow sorting, cutting, roping, and have helped with moving cattle as well as branding and vaccinating calves on a working ranch. My education does not stop and I continue to learn different disciplines and take lessons from other equine professionals. I have recently obtained my ND 4H judging certification and become proficient in understanding standards and rulebooks for showing, as well as scoring in 4H, open and AQHA.

I am now located in SE North Dakota, but continue to serve the Midwest states as I travel home and to shows in MN and ND.

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