Thinking of starting your child in horseback riding lessons?
Congratulations! Riding is a skill that your child will keep forever. Like riding a bike, riding a horse is something you just don’t forget how to do.
Choosing a riding instructor for your child isn’t always simple. It’s important to find a safe lesson program where education and horsemanship are always at the forefront. Blue ribbons are nice, but without a safety-first, horse-first mentality, your child won’t learn the fundamentals that will make him or her a true equestrian. Fortunately, even if you […]
Do you have a disaster plan for your horses?
Government agencies advocate having an emergency plan in place for your family, but if you own horses, you know: you have family members that you can’t just bundle into the backseat if a natural disaster is looming.
No matter where you and your horses live, there is the potential for a disaster that could force evacuation or the possibility of living without supplies or electricity for a period of time. Whether it’s a hurricane, a flood, a tornado, or a wildfire, it pays […]
Cleaning tack. It’s a dirty job, but we all have to do it.
Saddles, bridles, and all the other bits of leather that we use on our horses can cost a fortune. Luckily, with proper care and storage, tack can last, if not forever, a very, very long time.
Climate control: Leather is just like you: it hates humidity. Saddles in humid, sub-tropical climates like the Southeast are always at risk for mold and mildew. You know that wonderful scent of leather that comes wafting out of a clean tack room? The odor of […]
How I Lost Heart, Then Gained Hope Through the Love of a Singular Horse
By Nancy Shulins, 258 pages, 2012 Da Capo Press
The author, an accomplished correspondent for the Associated Press, fills an unfulfilled need for children she is not biologically able to have, with of all things, a horse. The story follows her angst from making peace with what cannot be, through her angst in the adventure of first time horse ownership from 1996 through 2008.
I found the book so relatable on many levels. Her horse, a thoroughbred she names Eli […]
Is your farm muddy?
Summer mud. Winter mud. Spring mud. Fall mud. No matter what the season, mud is a part of a horseman’s life. Whether you live in a part of the country with a rainy season that makes mud a daily nuisance, or you just don’t have the best drainage in the world, mud happens.
And mud is more than just a tedious mess that ends up all over your boots. Mud can cause a host of health problems, from soft feet to skin infections. So what should horse owners be aware of when […]
Well, the official kick-off to summer has come and gone, and although some spots in the country might still have snow on the ground, there’s no question that most of us will be seeing hot weather very soon — if not already!
It’s nice to put away the blankets and jackets, of course, but hot weather comes with its own set of challenges for equine health.
One problem that often crops up in the summertime is dehydration. Keeping horses hydrated can be quite the challenge. (You can lead a horse to water, but if the horse doesn’t […]
Picture this: It’s six thirty in the evening. You’re tired from a long day at work. All you want is to get to the barn, get your horse’s stall cleaned, and maybe get in a quick ride before you head home to eat dinner and collapse.
You walk into the barn and sigh. Your horse’s stall is a wreck. There is more hay beneath his feet than bedding. He’s been working on that tunnel to freedom again, too: the gnawed spot on top of his stall door is easily an inch deeper than […]
When I was a child I rode with no fear.
I would always ride without a saddle and sometimes even with just a halter. When I was a child I could ride with no hands. I rode with the wind. I would jump anything in my way. I was one with my best friend, my horse. With him I found my peace through the ups and downs of childhood and adolescence.
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. It seems so unfair, as we age, no matter how often or how much we ride, that our […]