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Nothing small about girl’s love of miniature horses

By Madeleine Fuselier

The Orange Leader

Carlee Dupuy is a sixth grader with a big love for miniature horses. She and her parents, Joey and Wendy Dupuy, are using that passion to grow their family business in the Little Cypress area of Orange, Texas. Tallowood Farms got its start in the Quarter Horse business in 2004. Since then, the farm has transitioned to dealing primarily in the Miniature Horse business, with Carlee taking a leading role in its operations.

After a day of studies at Saint Mary Catholic School, Carlee’s work is far from over. At home, she is responsible for working the minis, letting them out to eat grass, cleaning their stalls, feeding them, and training them.

“She’s saved nickels and dimes here and there and she’s actually helped pay for some of the [minis] that we’ve bought, so she understands the value… She has to buy them, she has to manage [them], she has to take care of them… She’s doing a good job with it,” Joey Dupuy, said.

“When somebody comes to visit… Carlee is involved with it. She’s the one showing them, talking to [the customers] about it and answering questions,” Joey Dupuy said.

“A lot of people that buy miniatures can’t have big horses. They don’t have room for them and so a lot of them have never had one before and so she educates them a lot in how to take care of them and what to feed them,” Wendy Dupuy said.

On one occasion, when she was home alone, Carlee even delivered a mini all by herself!

“She handled it very well,” Joey Dupuy said.

Ever since her first encounter with miniature horses, Carlee has been hooked.

“We were at a horse show and there was a little mini and I loved it… I’ve just really liked minis ever since,” Carlee said.

In addition to raising minis, Carlee also shows them. Through the years, she has honed her skills at local Miniature Horse shows and has won several awards.

“We went from showing locally to showing in the [AMHA] sanction shows… And then Carlee ended up winning two World titles last year,” Joey Dupuy said.

Last weekend, Carlee and her mini, Voodoo, returned to World to defend their title. Carlee and Voodoo competed well, winning World Champion in Senior Geld Halter, Reserve World Champion in Driving, Fifth Place in Jumping, and Third Place in Hunter.

The entire Dupuy family is very complimentary of Carlee’s trainer, Mike Rosauer with Stars Miniatures.

“He understands what it takes to compete at a higher level,” Joey Dupuy said.

“He teaches a lot of respect,” Wendy Dupuy said.

Carlee’s parents are both very proud of her work ethic and all that she has accomplished.

“It’s not easy. You have to put in a lot of effort and there has to be a lot of inner drive and you have to have the talent. There’s got to be some natural talent there,” Joey Dupuy said.

With Carlee’s passion and drive, and the commitment of the entire Dupuy family, there are sure to be big things in store for Tallowood Farms and their Miniature Horses.