Winter Horseshoe Options

10:54 pm
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Ah, it’s time for winter shoes.

Bring out the boots: waterproof, shearling-lined, insulated, bulky boots. The ones for stomping through mud and slush and snow for another season. Put away your flip-flops; hide them somewhere, you don’t want to be reminded of them mid-winter, or you’ll find yourself on a plane to the Caribbean before you’ve sorted out a barn-sitter.

But what about your horse? His winter boots need consideration, too. From occasional ice to heavy snows, no matter where you live, if the seasons are affecting your choice in […]

Winter Leather Care

5:36 pm
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Winter is nothing but trouble.

Horses are determined to grow into wooly teddy bears, blankets get muddy and ripped, buckets and water troughs freeze. And of course, winter comes with its own set of problems for our leather saddles and bridles, to say nothing of our boots.

It’s not just the constant temperature dives and climbs that can damage tack. Indoor arenas keep tack dry, but often dust seems to accompany every ride, no matter how well-watered the footing is kept. And riding outdoors through a medley of rain, ice, and snow (not to mention road […]

Winter Games: 4 Indoor Activities For You and Your Horse

6:00 am
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The bad news: winter is coming. The good news: winter is coming!

And this is a great opportunity to work on all those little exercises you haven’t had time for during the warmer months. Some are more work, some are more play, but they’re all great activities that will strengthen your horse, yourself, and your teamwork.

Gymnastic poles. Most suitable for those with an indoor arena, setting up gymnastic poles, whether they are on the ground or in jump standards, are useful for every horse and rider team. Not a jumper? No problem. Use […]

Equine Dental Care: The Basics

4:12 pm
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Your horse is made to chew.

Over millions of years of evolution, your delicate equine has perfected many things: galloping, jumping, spooking at plastic bags. But above all else, horses are champion chewers. They have 36 to 44 teeth (interestingly, this number is a moving target) that grow by several millimeters each year, all positioned in precise locations to bite, chew, and grind food — specifically, grasses. The average healthy horse has enough tooth in reserve to get him through about thirty years of life.

And if he was spending thirty years grazing his way through a pasture, that […]

Horse, Meet Vacuum – Vacuum Meet Horse

8:47 pm
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We all have the muscles to prove that we’re horsepeople.

Biceps are part of the job description, whether we’re mucking stalls, stacking hay, or just grooming our horses. But every now and then, even the most stalwart horseman can get faced with a horse so indescribably a dirt-ball, not even our own considerable elbow grease is up to the challenge.

In warm weather, high pressure from a hose might do the trick to remove those layers of grime. But if you don’t have time for a bath, or if the temperature has dropped past […]

Fashion-Forward Fillies: Three Equestrian Designers Taking Country To Town

8:44 pm
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It’s that time of year again! I’m talking about boot season, when every department store heaps their shoe displays with odd (to our eyes) takes on riding boots.

This year Macy’s looks like it has been devoted to bring back the hunt top as a show-ring statement — except that none of us would dare put one of those fashion-only boots in a stirrup.

As equestrians, we’re always looking for something beautiful and authentic to display our traditional sensibilities, in and out of the saddle. You already have the boots, of course. So […]

Warm Horse, Happy Horse: Three Strategies For Keeping Your Horse Comfortable All Winter Long

8:38 pm
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Whether you live in the balmy south or the shivery north, winter will arrive on your doorstep sooner or later.

Horses stay warm very naturally on their own: their coats turn fluffy on the coldest, windiest days because they quite literally turn their hair up to block the chill. When the hair follicles stand on end, a warm jacket of insulating air is kept close to the skin. It’s kind of like goose bumps in humans, except that getting goosebumps, for us, just tells us to find our jackets.

But what if your horse doesn’t have […]

American Towns Built Around Horses

8:34 pm
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Horsetown USA: Three American Cities With Horses in Their DNA

No matter what your discipline is, chances are you can strike up a conversation with any horseman. We might have different saddles and ideas about the length of a horse’s mane, but we’ve got similar passions when you come right down to it, and similar needs, too, like green-space preservation, or access to a variety of feed and farm suppliers.

In some spots, the benefits of horsemen sharing their needs has resulted in some pretty special places. They’ve got beaches and mountains, corrals and […]

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