Cooper Quarter Horses: Introducing Don’t Zip Me Up
Don’t Skip Zip has long been a household name in the industry, with numerous World Champions, Congress Champions, and High Point winners gracing the pages of his lengthy sire resume. Once again, he has passed on his impressive lineage in the form of Don’t Zip Me Up, a 2011 triple-registered (AQHA, APHA, PtHA) sorrel stallion by the mare I’ve Stepped Up. With only breeding a handful of Cooper Quarter Horses’ own mares last year, Clarice Cooper and Ryan Shotkoski are very excited to announced that “Shooter” will be standing to the public in 2016 to make his mark passing on the Don’t Skip Zip line. They are looking forward to what the future holds for the farm’s junior sire.
A freak accident as a weanling resulted in an injury, and Shooter was never able to launch a show career of his own. But that hasn’t inhibited his natural, effortless movement, and laid back temperament.
At just 5 years old, it hasn’t been an easy road for the stallion.
Clarice purchased his dam, I’ve Stepped Up, from Troy Compton about 10 years ago.
“We purchased her sight unseen from Troy,” says Clarice. “Not only for her show record, but every line back has a huge show record or produce record.”
“Stella,” as she was affectionately known, was more than just a broodmare to them, she was a genuine part of the family. Unfortunately, she got hurt when she was carrying Shooter, and Clarice found her one morning down and dying.
“She couldn’t get up, but we somehow managed to save her,” she remembers. “We had a harness that you can suspend them from, and I’d have to drain her bladder every six hours. Eventually, we nursed her back to health, and by some miracle, she didn’t abort the stud colt she was carrying.”
From that day on, Shooter was known as their miracle baby. Even from his days as a colt, he had such beautiful, natural movement that made people take notice.
“From day one, we knew he was extra special. We’re extremely selective on what we keep as a stud, and he definitely caught our attention as being the total package.”
Not only did Shooter have the laid back personality of his sire, he also inherited his dam’s sweet disposition which makes for an extremely amicable temperament, particularly in a stallion. Stella had been a farm favorite in part because of her lovable personality.