By John McGee
Some people love cars. Some love motorcycles or boats. And some, like Skye Mize, owner and founder of Whoazone, love horses. Mize was born with what she refers to as “equine fever” and she believes there are many others who were, as well.
Mize has been a horse lover since she before she could walk or talk. She rode hunter and dressage horses in her middle school days and moved to cow horses, reiners, and cutters when the jumps got too big for her mother to remain calm when watching. In her professional career, Mize became an equine veterinary technician with a focus on anesthesiology, but her horse fever never broke.
After the birth of her first child Savannah, Mize decided to team up with Emily Vanadore to create Whoazone, an equine marketing website. Since then, she and Vanadore have been able to combine their “horse fever” with a passion to help others through their business.
“We wanted to offer a website that gives you a lot of social media exposure, along with web exposure, and gives a place where people can go and find a saddle horse, a stallion, a sale horse, and a trainer all in one spot,” Mize says of the Whoazone business model.
Recently, one of the stallions Whoazone was promoting attracted the interest of a man from Michigan looking to buy a horse for his daughter who had been fighting Acute Myeloid Leukemia since she was a toddler. He bought the horse as something for his daughter to look forward to riding when she was released from the hospital. Through the sale of the horse, Mize developed a bond with the Michigan family and decided she needed to help them out.
“I called all my owners and called a bunch of people in the industry and said, ‘Listen, this little girl and her parents need some help; she’s been in and out of the hospital her whole life and we would like to do something for them,’” says Mize. “So they all donated breedings and different items, and we ended up raising over $20,000 for her.”
Unfortunately, the young girl recently lost her battle against acute myeloid leukemia, though her story continues to inspire on the blog section of the Whoazone website under “I Believe in Unicorns.”
Additionally, Whoazone recently had a social media auction called Horses Helping Houston through which they raised more than $18,000 for the victims of Hurricane Harvey. They plan to use the money to buy essential items for both the horses and the people affected by the hurricane.
“I would say, if you believe you can do it, and you think you have the skill set to create something and chase the dream, all you have to do is work really hard, be honest, and treat people the way you want to be treated,” says Mize. “Whenever you do that, people are more willing to do everything they can to help you, and that’s what happened with Whoazone.”
Whoazone has plans to create a seven-and-up reining event show in the Bryan College Station area to increase interest in the sport and encourage athletic longevity in the horses that compete. They also visit Texas A&M University as guest speakers to teach students about equine marketing.