So many people have questions about owning a horse, how to learn how to ride, or just “horsey” information in general that I am listing some of them in hopes that some of your questions can be answered here.
I have always wanted to learn how to ride, but I am intimidated by horses! How do I get over this?
It’s good to be a little intimidate by horses because they can be a bit unpredictable at times. However, this aside, you can overcome your fear slowly just by spending a little time getting to know them. In spite of their size, horses are timid creatures, and they very rarely strike out in anger. Fear is usually what motivates them to act unruly! Have someone with plenty of experience go with you to teach you the rudiments of horse behavior, what not to do when you are around them, and how to approach them. You will be riding in no time!
How much land do I need to own to have a horse on my property?
The rule of thumb is 2 acres per horse, and 1 additional acre for each horse thereafter. So, if you have 4 horses, you will need at least 5 acres of land to properly sustain them. If not, you will have to board it (them) somewhere that can supply adequate space and shelter.
Am I responsible if my horse escapes my property and causes damage to my neighbor’s property?
Unfortunately, yes, you are. The best way to avoid this is to make sure your fences are secure and strong enough to keep your horse contained. This means checking them frequently for weak spots or any area that can be accessed by the horse to get out. If you own a horse that likes to jump the fences, make sure to make them tall enough to prevent it.
How much exercise does my horse need? I have to be away frequently and am not able to ride a lot.
A horse needs adequate exercise at least a few days each week. If you aren’t able to do it, it might be a good idea to hire someone with riding experience who is willing to exercise him for you. Just standing around in the pasture is not good for him. He will get fat and out of shape very quickly.
I’m thinking about getting a horse. What equipment/services do I need?
Well, first things first. You need a saddle, bridle, halter, and grooming equipment like brushes and combs, and feed and water buckets. You might also want to get a fly sheet for summer and a blanket for winter. You will also need a shovel, rake, pitchfork, and a wheelbarrow for cleaning out his stall! Oh yes, a farrier who can trim his feet and shoe him, along with a vet for all the things he is going to need over the course of his life, and last, but not least-an equine dentist to keep his teeth in shape. That about covers it-to start!
Owning a horse can be such a joy that you might not even blink at the number of things you have to have, or what you have to do to properly care for him. You just do it because your love for these beauties overshadows everything else. I hope these answers shed some light on any questions or concerns you may have.