10 Things to do BEFORE you go horse shopping
Part 1Buying a horse is a big commitment in both time and money. The emotional energy spent is a large factor as well.
If you buy a horse before you lay the correct groundwork, you run the risk of coming home with a horse that isn't suitable for you. At the worst, he could be dangerous and at best, you could wind up spending a thousand dollars or more to get professional trainer to correct the problems.
Before you go horse shopping there are 10 basic steps to go through.
1. Take riding lessons for at least six months.Riding lessons will teach you the basics of control on your horse and the foundation for correct horsemanship. These lessons will teach you to ride and also how to safely groom and handle a horse. You'll also establish a relationship with a professional horse person in your area who knows you and who you can turn to for help if you need it.
2. Decide on the type of riding you want to do.There are many types of riding styles. The most basic are Western or English. Then you can break down those two styles into many subcategories. You don't have to make one choice exclusive of all others. Many people enjoy riding both styles and compete in both.
And you know what? It's perfectly ok to ride 'english' in a Western saddle and 'western' in an English saddle! I have a distinct tendency to use my English saddle more often because it is so much easier to lift. The smaller saddle pads are also a lot easier to wash!
Decide if you want a horse to trail ride and just enjoy having him or if you want to be competitive and show.
3. Your Horse's personalityThe type of personality you want for your horse depends a lot on the type of riding you want to do and also your personality. Some riders want a horse with a big engine and a lot of fire. Others like a horse to be quiet and laid back.
Use those six months of riding lessons to help you figure out what kind of personality you like. If you're already an experienced rider, take time to think about all the horses you've ridden in the past and what you liked and disliked about them. Remember, you can retrain a lot of things about a horse, but his personality isn't one of them!
It’s usually easier to get a laid back horse to rev his engine than to get a hot horse to relax.
Click Here for Part 2 of '10 Things to do BEFORE horse shopping'
Places to keep your horse