Unfortunately, her work was not in either of these fields so she became a Certified Farrier doing mainly corrective shoeing on weekends and evenings. She eventually was able to take early retirement from the company she had been working for. Marie began breeding horses after purchasing undeveloped acreage in Maryland, and building LJS Sporthorses from the ground up.
For a short time, Marie bred Thoroughbreds but then switched over to Warmbloods and Warmblood crosses. She also bred Sport ponies for a short time as well. All in all, Marie has been breeding horses now for over 20 years.
Marie's breeding goals have changed somewhat over the years. She first started breeding warmbloods and crosses for the amateur rider wanting a partner with an excellent temperament, versatility and soundness/longevity. Although she still breeds for that “holy trinity”, now she concentrates on producing dressage, eventers, and hunter/jumpers that have the aforementioned qualities, but is also able to take their rider to the upper level of their discipline of choice.
With a riding background in the jumper ring, Marie feels that many qualities that make a good jumper also makes for a good dressage partner; infusing jump blood into dressage prospects and dressage worthy gaits into jumpers. The theory is simple in that a good engine is important for all disciplines as well as an elastic, free shoulder and powerful “connected” push from behind. Jump talent is highly heritable where as producing upper level dressage gaits can be more of a challenge. Many horses are bred with an over extravagant front end, but end up dragging their underactive hind end around the ring. Although many of these super flashy, difficult to ride horses seem to get the spotlight early in their careers, few seem to be able to remain sound and or rideable enough to reach the top of the sport. The loin connection needs to support the front end in order to have a conformationally “balanced” animal capable of longevity in sport.
Marie's breeding goal is to produce a horse that possesses the correct conformation to perform the discipline in which it was bred for as well as have the temperament/rideability and long term soundness needed for the upper levels of sport.
LJS has produced numerous First Premiums in both dressage and jumper bred foals, most notable of which are the KWPN’s 3rd highest scoring Jumper Bred Foal of North America in 2012 and 2013 (Harlow LJS and Ignatia LJS). Many of our young stock have shown in-hand and in the ribbons at many prestigious Breed Shows such as Dressage at Devon, Future Event Horse series, USDF Horse of the Year (First Level and KWPN Bred), and recently; USHJA Zone 3 third place winner with only 3 judged outings. The oldest offspring are now proving themselves under saddle as well with many LJS-breds competing and winning USEF Awards in dressage, hunter, hunter derby, eventing and the jumper rings.
Marie Taylor Emrey has owned, worked, and shown horses/ponies since the age of 5. She originally went to college to become a veterinarian but ended up a biologist doing research instead. Her two biggest areas of interest were equine lameness/biomechanics and genetics.