Owning a horse is an exciting challenge, but there is no doubting how daunting it can prove. While you may have owned animals in the past, the responsibility of looking after a horse is a different prospect entirely.
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There are several reasons for this.
The first, and most obvious, is that a horse is a physically large animal compared to other types of pets, making it difficult to house, transport and look after.
What’s more, with a horse, you have to learn to ride and interact with it safely. While it may not be malicious, horses can be highly dangerous and have been known to throw or kick riders when spooked or provoked.
As a result, you need to be careful when handling and riding your horse, which requires training and experience.
Of course, these challenges are painting a picture of doom and gloom. While owning a horse is a big undertaking, it is also a deeply rewarding experience that creates memories that stay with you for the rest of your life.
To help you get the most out of your horse ownership experience, here’s a practical guide to owning a horse:
Make Sure They Are Ridden Regularly
If you have owned dogs before, you will appreciate the importance of exercising your animals regularly. The same certainly applies to horses, who should be ridden regularly to keep them fit and happy and ensure they continue to be used to your presence.
It is unfair on your horse to leave it cooped up in a stable block or a small field for weeks on end. If you have decided to buy a horse, you must dedicate enough time to riding them regularly.
Of course, you may want to invest in horse transportation if you want to take them to certain locations to ride them, or if you feel too unsure about riding along the road.
If You Can’t Look After Them Every Day, Hire Someone Who Can
Now, while you must spend regular time with your horse to build a bond with them and ensure they are being exercised a healthy amount, it is understandable if you are too busy to look after them every single day.
Many people have to store their horses at stables away from their homes, which makes regular jobs, such as feeding and mucking out the stables, difficult to handle.
As a result, you may instead want to hire someone to look after the horse for you. Typically, if you are storing your horse at a stable block, then the stables’ owner will have someone who looks after the animals.
If not, search online or in the local community for someone to look after the horse for you.
Be Sure Your Lifestyle Suits Having a Horse
By now, you can spot the running theme of this advice. You need to be present a lot of the time if you want to make a success of your horse ownership.
Many people make the mistake of buying a horse, only to realize that their lifestyle is ill-suited to horse ownership.
Perhaps you are based in a city or are constantly tied down by work or family commitments. If this is the case, then consider holding out on your horse-riding dreams until your circumstances change.