I have been a horse owner, well it seems like forever. It is not just the experience itself you have as a horse owner but rather what you do with that experience which shapes you as a horseman/person. Every day we have interactions with our horses. Every day we have to decide what we will do with that experience. Will we keep it, reshape it, or replace it?
That choice is up to us.
If you do the same thing over and over again, it becomes a habit. If it is a good ‘habit’ great. If it is not, well then it is not so good and we should replace that “bad” habit with something else.
Take some time to reflect on the experience you are having and actually figure out why it happened.
If your horse is performing better today. Take a few minutes and reflect on why. Did I change something? Did I improve something or did I actually prepare my horse properly so it can perform the movement correctly. It only takes a few minutes to feel what has happened and reflect on the way it happened and the events leading up to it.
I often ask my student, “What did you do to make that happen?” If they say, “I don’t know.” – then I say, “Think about it. If you don’t know how you got your horse to do that, then how are you going to repeat it?” So think about what you are doing and understand how you are influencing the horse with your riding… … your horse will thank you for it.
In order for your horse to improve you have to ride it. Your horse will not improve standing in his stall or our in the pasture! I challenge you to go and ride your horse and send me an email and tell me how your ride was. I’d love to hear from you!
Keeping Your Horse At Home Can be REwarding Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Have you thought it may be really nice to keep your horses at home. In your own back yard? Well let me tell you, I have been doing this for a life time and most days it is great and wonder why everyone isn’t doing it. Some days however, I wonder what AM I Doing?
Time Commitment – Do you have the time. Some horse owners are able to keep their horses at home outside 24/7. Unfortuneately for me, in the extreme weather conditions, very hot in the summer and VERY cold in the winter months, I have a turn in/out regime which works well for me.
My horses are out during the day and in during the evening. In the hot summer months I reverse that and put the horses in during the day, out of the sun and bugs, and then out at night time when it is cooler.
In addition to the actual handling of the horses to turn out and bring them back in, there is time alloted to mucking stalls and keeping the stable tidy. I count on 20 – 30 minutes per horse to muck, sweep and general tidy of the stable. It varies depending on the time of year. During the winter months the time is on the longer side because I put out hay for the horses and they may be in their stalls for a longer period of time.
Besides the stable duties there are daily horse requirements as well. This includes grooming and general health care. Horses require general care. This means looking at them daily and brushing their coats and actually looking at them to see if they are ok.
Give Your Horse the “Once Over” every day (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Each day my horses get a “once over”. It is kind of like a “scratch and dent” review. I look over horses and:
Check for shoes (or lack there of!)
Check for scratches, cuts or scrapes
Check for runny eyes
Check for runny nose
Check for swelling and lumps on their legs and body.
This is not a one time deal. This is a daily check. When I put on their halters to put them out in the morning I check to make sure things are “normal” for that horse. Then in the evening, when I bring them in, I check again.
The key is to know what is normal for your horse.
If you think you can not commit to this time, do not bring your horses home.
Do you know what you are doing? This is important if you would like to keep your horse at home.
If you are unsure about what to do with a horse then do not bring horses home to keep them at home.
Having the knowledge and understanding is important to your safety. If you have little or no experience with taking care of a horse then leave it until you have developed more experience or knowledge.
Do you have the finances? Horse care at home may be a bit less expensive than
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
boarding your horse out but remember you have to have the $$$ and the time to get shavings, feed and hay from local suppliers. Some people think because it is cheaper it is a better alternative. Sometimes it isn’t. Work it out. Go to the feed store and hay supplier to confirm pricing on supplies before bringing your horse home.
If you don’t have the $$$ to commit to a life with horses then don’t bring your horse home.
Are you willing to sacrifice? This is a biggy. By sacrifice I mean having your life revolve around your horses’ lives. Horse owners and people who keep their horses at home recognize that if they go out they still have to come back and have an early morning taking care of the stalls and feeding their horses.
There is no sleeping in because you are tired!
If you like to sleep in and are not committed to making horses a priority, then board your horse somewhere else.
The Real Truth
The real truth is that I wouldn’t have it any other way. I grew up with horses in my back yard and I continue to have horses in my back yard and in my stable.
I can tell at a glance if there is something wrong or if something needs to be changed. If you keep your horses on your own you will grow and develop a sense with your horses. A sense that you may not get by keeping your horse at a boarding farm.
You will begin to develop a bond with your horses and they will become more than your friend but an actual confidente.
I know it sounds kinda like a load of quackery but because you are with them for more than the mandatory riding time, they will develop a bond with you.
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Win At Your Next Horse Show -Tips For Equestrians who Want to Know
Win At Your Next Horse Show -Tips For Equestrians who Want to Know
What The Judge Is Looking For
Are you tired of your friends winning ribbons and you’re stuck at the in-gate waiting for the announcer to say your number?
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