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7 Key Tips for Small Business

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   July 26, 2012 17:34

Gregory Buck, CA
Munro & Company, Chartered Accountants

Small businesses get attacked by Canada Revenue Agency quite often so keep the following in mind:

1.    Nothing is deductible unless supported by a proper invoice, including the vendor’s HST/GST number.  Don’t think a credit card receipt will suffice.

2.    Register for your own GST/HST.  Even small businesses can benefit.

3.    Ensure you have support for all deposits made to your bank account.  On audit, CRA will call that deposit “unreported income” if you have inadequate support.  So that loan from Dad.    Document it and get proof of where it came from.  Cash deposits?  If no support, then don’t deposit them in your account.  Remember, CRA don’t care about your opinion.  They care about facts!!

4.    Keep good records.  There are lots of small computerized record keeping software solutions out.  Intuit’s Quicken, Microsoft’s Money or NetSuite are good starters.  Quickbooks and Simply Accounting are good for a little larger business.

5.    Farming activities can be filed on a cash basis.  This is sometimes an advantage. If you elect to use a cash basis you cannot go back to accrual.  So evaluate your options before committing.  You may want to get advice from a qualified accountant.

6.    Payment solutions like PayPal and E-transfer will keep your cash flow current.  They are easy to use and immediate.

7.     Provide your financial information to your tax professional early.  It takes time to plan!!


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Farm Safety: Children on the Farm

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   July 23, 2012 17:45

Brenda Stefanson, PAg

Farm Business Management Specialist

Regional Services, Ministry of Agriculture

Watrous Regional Office


Farm families have always worked together to build successful farm operations. On many farms, the human resource plan assigns much of the labour and management tasks to family members, young and old.  Today’s young farm operators learned their production and management knowledge as they worked side-by-side with parents and grandparents. Now, they will pass these skills on to another generation of farm kids.

Family farm life provides a stimulating learning environment for children of all ages. The knowledge and the work ethic they develop while helping on the family farm will serve them well in their future careers. However, the farm is also a workplace in which numerous health and safety hazards are present. Here’s some practical and common sense advice for busy farm families to ensure the safety, health and well being of their children and teenagers.

Identify Hazards. There are numerous hazards on a farm including machinery, chemicals, unpredictable livestock, enclosed spaces (grain storage, etc.), and electricity.  An important step to preventing tragedy is to make a list of all the things that could seriously harm a younger child. Develop fenced-off safe play areas to keep toddlers and younger children away from workplace hazards. As children grow older and increasingly participate in farm activities, continue to work with them to assess the hazards and ensure that older children are appropriately trained.

Base Expectations on Both Age and Maturity. Children grow and mature at different rates. Young adults tend to overestimate their skill and knowledge levels when asked if they can perform a task. Parents are the best judge of when a young adult has the maturity to take on farm chores that are hazardous. Initial training and supervision is important to ensure your child can do the chore safely.

Emphasize Safety and Model Safe Behavior. Consider your own behavior in busy and difficult times. Do you take shortcuts that compromise safety? Children will learn your habits… both good and bad. Keep them safe as they learn about farm work through the consistent demonstration of your own good habits and safe work practices.

Develop and Enforce a Safe Environment.  Set up appropriate rules for your children to follow and monitor them consistently. Utilize the many government and community agencies that focus on farm safety to learn more about protecting your loved ones on the family farm.

The Agriculture Health and Safety Network, the Ministry of Labour Relations and Workplace Safety, and the Ministry of Agriculture can provide you with information and resources to help you keep your family and employees safe as they work and play this summer. As we look forward to a busy and productive growing season and our children enjoy their summer vacation, keep safety in mind.

For more information, please contact:

    Watrous Regional Services Office at (306) 946-3220,
    Agriculture Knowledge Centre at 1-866-457-2377or
    Visit our website at www.agriculture.gov.sk.ca.


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Equine Enterprise Profile – Performance Equine Therapy with Amanda Duerr by Carol M. Upton

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   July 13, 2012 17:16


Human beings are embracing natural wellness for themselves these days and Amanda Duerr is doing much the same for equine athletes with her Saskatchewan-based Performance Equine Therapy. Duerr’s mission is to provide quality Equine Chiropractic, Massage Therapy and Acupressure, but also to help educate owners so they may care for their equine partners at a higher level. She promotes wellness through injury prevention and health maintenance.

Duerr grew up on a farm where horses were a part of daily life. Her family encouraged both the competitive and recreational sides of horses. Duerr subsequently spent every summer at shows or rodeos, took strongly to the performance/sport horse area and studied for years with different industry professionals. She developed a passion for animal health and decided to pursue a career caring for equine athletes.

“I set my standards high in gaining experience in sports therapy and equine rehabilitation,” says Duerr. “The demand for quality equine therapy programs for Canadian horses was strong and this led to the start-up of Performance Equine Therapy.”

Duerr’s business is unique in that her programs are developed, in collaboration with owners, coaches and trainers, according to each horse’s specific needs. She takes pride in offering full spectrum care and a holistic approach based on sound medical knowledge. A typical day is extremely busy and may include working in a clinic atmosphere, attending to horses that are hauled to appointments, or going on the road to individual barns. Duerr  says she finds her joy in seeing results in the horses.

“Whether it’s helping horse and rider reach a  higher performance level, working on a maintenance program or simply achieving better life quality, it all comes down to a healthier, happier horse.” 

One of Duerr’s biggest business challenges is juggling appointments while on the road. She asks owners to provide her 48 hour notice of rescheduling and she also leaves small spaces in her day so that cancellations or changes do not create insurmountable difficulties.

Duerr suggests that anyone interested in starting an equine therapy business ought to acquire as much education and experience in the field as possible. She equates success with the amount of drive a person has to better themselves and for her that means staying current on new therapies, being an active member of the horse industry and attending seminars on a regular basis.

Future plans for Performance Equine Therapy include new program and resource development. Simply put, Duerr loves her healing work and sees in it endless benefits to both horse and rider.
About Amanda Duerr

Amanda Duerr is a Certified Equine Therapist who has been providing chiropractic/massage care for several years. Her gentle holistic approach and natural solutions for common health issues have improved the lives and performance capabilities of horses throughout Saskatchewan, Alberta and Manitoba. When she’s not working, she trains barrel horses and participates in rodeos. Visit Amanda at: www.performance-equinetherapy.com

Carol Upton (604) 886-8951
Dreams Aloud Promotions
~ Linking your dreams to the world
Website:      www.dreamsaloud.ca
Twitter:         http://twitter.com/#!/Karolka
LinkedIn:      http://linkd.in/qyQNxy
Facebook:   http://on.fb.me/dTidfK

HOT:          http://www.horseownertoday.com/vendor.aspx?vid=79

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Equine Enterprise Profile – Cuatro L Andalusians with Carlos and Brenda Lara by Carol M. Upton

posted by Horse Owner Today    |   July 6, 2012 06:29


Most horse-lovers find themselves entranced by the sight of the regal Andalusian. We may have seen them in such fantasy epics as The Lord of the Rings and The Chronicles of Narnia, or watched them turn in a breath-taking Grand Prix performance. They are one of the oldest and noblest breeds of horse in the world, unforgettable to see no matter what discipline you may favour.

Cuatro L Andalusians, located on 4,000 acres in Wainwright, Alberta, is the largest exclusively Pura Raza Espanola (PRE - translated as “Pure Spanish Horse”) breeding facility in Canada. They have the widest selection of horses for sale, at all ages, genders and levels of training.

Cuatro Owner Carlos Lara, who has been riding since the age of 4, has a great passion for horses, handed down to him by his father. After moving from Mexico to Canada, he searched for a business he could love that would also remind him of his home country and breeding the Spanish/PRE horse has fulfilled this criteria.


Carlos Riding

                                                             Photo credit Johane Jenelle                                                            

Honouring four generations of equine tradition, Cuatro L Andalusian Breeding Centre was established in 1999 by Carlos and Brenda Lara to bring Spanish bred Andalusians to North America. They identified Canadian demand for these horses, spent four months in Spain to find the best breeders, and decided on the foundation stock that they then shipped to Canada as their first herd. 

The Laras see their mission as the introduction of the versatile Andalusian to Canada, for use not only in dressage, but for riders of all disciplines. It is their goal to increase the popularity of the breed in Canada. At the Centre, they continually demonstrate that the Andalusian is not only a good option in competitive riding, but in some areas also the best, due to athletic ability, intelligence and amazing disposition. 

“The PRE horse, with exceptional character and willingness to please, is one of the easiest to train,” Lara explains. “They are also incredibly athletic and brave, since they were used for centuries in war and in bull fighting.”


Cuatro Stallion

                                                                Photo credit Johane Jenelle

Horse care, breeding, work with foals, maintenance of the grounds, and training are all part of a typical day at Cuatro. Currently, there are 12 horses in training from green broke to Grand Prix level. As the facility is only open to the public April to September, they are now in the midst of their busiest season.

The Laras cite discipline, hard work, perseverance, and a passion for horses as essential qualities for working in the breeding business.  Lara sees his Latin American background and extensive experience in the PRE horse industry as a particular strength in offering the best Andalusians in Canada and in educating the equine enthusiast population in all aspects of the PRE horse.

Future plans include a stronger marketing and promotion campaign. Cuatro’s exceptional Andalusians are a powerful testament to the obvious passion the Laras have for everything they undertake. That leaves no doubt that they will reach the next level with their larger vision of ultimately providing horses for export to the United States.

Cuatro L is the largest exclusively Pura Raza Espanola (PRE) breeding facility in Canada and they focus only on the ancient Cerrado en Bocado bloodline. Nothing is spared to produce animals of the very best caliber. Visit Cuatro and the Laras at: http://www.andalusianbreeder.com

Carol Upton (604) 886-8951
Dreams Aloud Promotions
~ Linking your dreams to the world
Twitter:         http://twitter.com/#!/Karolka
LinkedIn:      http://linkd.in/qyQNxy
Facebook:   http://on.fb.me/dTidfK



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