Arlene Magid is well known throughout the Arabian community for her work in pedigree research, conformational study and consulting. A wealth of knowledge, Arlene has helped many owners and breeders learn the history and heritage of their horses. Her magazine articles have been published worldwide, she was an editor of an Arabian horse publication for many years, and her mating consults have produced National winners. Recently she completed research on Egyptian Arabians around the world in Volume 13 of the Pyramid Society Handbook. A life-long Arabian lover herself, Arlene’s passion for the breed is contagious.
With the rise of artificial insemination, social media and improved shipping services, breeding opportunities are available on a scale never seen before. Going forward in the face of these developments, it has never been more important that we look back to understand the wealth of information on bloodlines, conformation and the heritage of our Arabian horses. On these fronts, Arlene is undoubtedly an expert.
When asked about how she became an Arabian horse lover, Arlene explained, “I fell in love with the breed from seeing photos of Arabian
horses in books at our public library when I was five. My parents bought me my first Arabian horse magazine subscription when I was six years old. When I was 23, I bought my first mare with money inherited from my grandmother. I was never able to breed as many horses myself as I would have liked but have done mating consults for a number of breeders in the last 30 years which made me feel I could help create good horses.”
In addition to being an Arabian lover, Arlene has written about, raised, shown and studied the breed. “My first magazine article was written for Arabian Horse World in 1982 (it was about the breeding program of Alice Payne, the last owner of *Raffles) and I joined the staff of Arabian Horse Times later that year. I became an editor of that publication until 1999. My articles have been published in breed magazines all over the world. My proudest achievement was raising a U.S. Top Ten Sport Horse Mare, who I gave to a close friend when I moved to England in 2002. She was shown under my friend Laurie Schmidt's ownership to win her title. So I've had hands on experience of owning, breeding and showing my own horses, as well as helping others with theirs, since 1982.”
Through her work, Arlene has helped make many sales, breeding pairings and helped owners learn more about their show, sale, or breeding horses. Speaking about her fascination with pedigrees, she shared, “Pedigrees are a time capsule of breed history. I trained as a historian (M.A. in European History) so fascination with history extends to the study of Arabian horse history. I first studied pedigrees seriously as a child because I wanted to be a good breeder as an adult and realized I had to know pedigrees and conformation to achieve that goal. I purchased my first set of Arabian printed stud books at age 10. Before that I relied on pedigrees printed in the breed magazines as years ago it was common to include several generations of pedigree in advertisements.”
Given her expertise in the area, we couldn’t resist asking Arlene about her favorite bloodlines in the Arabian horse world. She responded: “I love a good horse of any bloodline-I define a good horse as one that is unmistakably Arabian with sound conformation and athletic. I do admit I am partial to Babson Egyptians because of their amazing dispositions and athletic gifts. I also admire Polish Arabians bred in the past as some of the most beautiful and talented horses in the world. My favorite bloodline as a child was Crabbet and I still love that group, especially descendants of the CMK stallion Aurab.”
As breeders we have a duty to the future of the Arabian horse, and to our own education and learning. Arlene was kind enough to share her thoughts on some recommended reading for today’s breeder. “It is very important for those currently breeding who want to create beautiful athletes to study form to function conformation. I recommend the conformation books written by Dr. Deb Bennett for this purpose. Breeders must self-educate about the good and bad points of bloodlines from impartial sources. In recent years there have been fewer good books published about the breed than in the past. For the history of the breed in North America the most essential book is Gladys Brown Edwards' War Horse to Show Horse. Get the third edition, which goes up to 1980. Another good resource are the Facebook groups online with photos of historic horses, which were not taken to conceal faults. KNOW what the ancestors of your horse(s) were like before you breed, and also study the ancestors of stallions you are considering as well.”
Arlene offers a wide range of services for affordable prices which can be used on websites, social media or print formats. Information on heritage, wall chart pedigrees, prepurchase consults, appraisals, assistance with breeding decisions, and write ups for sales or promotion, are just a few of her specialties.