What makes a kid safe horse? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 24 Old 03-15-2013, 09:50 PM
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Kid safe horses? They're the wooden ones with wheels or rockers aren't they??
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post #12 of 24 Old 03-15-2013, 10:10 PM
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I would consider my mare kid-safe, but ONLY when I'm there.

In her case, she's mostly blind and she's aware of her blindness so she basically functions like I'm her "guide human".
She pretty much won't do anything unless I tell her it's ok. She does have a mind of her own but she's a VERY smart girl and I've found that she'll really only take reasonable risks.

Anyway, even though she is really safe and I feel confident letting kids do whatever they want around her in my presence, I would never allow a child to be around her if I wasn't there. I'm constantly communicating with her about her surroundings/giving her feedback on her behavior and that plays a big part in how safe she is. When she's just doing her thing, alone, and only really knows what she's found out about her environment, she can be really dangerous just because she's unaware of what most of her world looks like.

I love that video that smrobs posted, that's exactly what a kid-safe horse should be like. Sensible and reactive enough but not overly reactive. Smart enough to tune in to what's necessary and tune out stuff that's just extra "noise".

Fabio - 13 year old Arabian/Lipizzan gelding

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post #13 of 24 Old 03-16-2013, 06:40 PM
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I would NEVER advertise a horse as "kid safe"...that is just opening yourself up to a liability lawsuit. I have horses that are very excellent and gentle with kids, but if I were to sell one of them, I would not advertise them as kid safe...
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post #14 of 24 Old 03-16-2013, 06:55 PM
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Originally Posted by loosie View Post
Kid safe horses? They're the wooden ones with wheels or rockers aren't they??
I think even those ones have been known to "buck" their rider off, depends how fast the rider decides to go

No horse is kid safe... they all have their own brains which cease to work at times. Saying this, a horse to be advertised as kid safe should IMO have no buck, rear, bite or spook at silly things. They should have a good set of breaks and be steady and reliable. I would not consider the horse you described to be kid safe,and if I were to put my child up on that horse serious questions would be asked if it behaved in the way you described.
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post #15 of 24 Old 03-16-2013, 07:32 PM
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I worry that many people looking for a kid safe horse may not have the knowledge and/or ability to work through issues if one arrises. Even the most wonderful mellow fellow can have a basic instinct take over in any given situation. I think if a horse has been a reliable mount for beginners one could state that but no horse is totally safe.

Here's another thought: What about having to prove that a kid is horse-safe before selling????
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post #16 of 24 Old 03-16-2013, 07:56 PM
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No horse is completely kid safe. I work with horses that do hippotherapy for special needs kids - they have to deal with unpredictable, often excessively loud, unbalanced kids every single day. Many people would consider them completely kid safe, but every horse has their kryptonite. One of the oldest hippotherapy geldings who has been in the program for years will still completely lose it if something rolls in front of him (think garbage blowing in the wind, soccer ball being kicked).
I would be wary of any ad that promised a completely 'kid-safe' horse. They don't exist, unfortunately.
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post #17 of 24 Old 03-16-2013, 08:12 PM
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I think being able to call 'kid broke' or 'kid safe' horse all depends on the kid, not the horse.
Has the kid been around horses before? Has the kid ever rode a horse before? Does the kid plan on being able to take care of the horse them selves? Does the kid have the balance on stay on a horse without your having to worry it will fall off.

People go out and buy 'kid broke, kid safe' horses for kids that have never even touched a horse before. I don't care how broke the horse is, a kid should never be allowed around a horse by their selves without knowing about horses first.

My cousin is 6 years old and love love loves horses. She has never really been able to ride a horse before, and wants to come out and ride my Rose. Rose has been rode by kids only, and has no buck, kick, rear, bite, spook, or speed to her what so ever. I trust this horse. (trust is a lot to it too. If you can't trust a horse, can you really trust a horse with your kid?). My cousin in going to come out tomorrow and ride. I plan on having her ride behind me on the saddle for a while, but then I thought I would set her up on Rose in the saddle and walk beside Rose while my cousin 'drove' her where she wants to go. My cousin will have 'control' of the horse and be able to choose where she goes, but if Rose was to act up, I would be standing right there to help get ahold of Rose and let my cousin down.

I think that is the only way a child should be able to ride a horse on their own until they have a VERY knowledgeable grasp of horses, riding, and horse care. It is just safer that way. I mean, a horse can be the gentlest, sweetest, calmest, most broke horse in the world, the greatest kids horse ever made, but if that child wasn't able to hang on and slid off the horse, the horse wouldn't know it and would be liable to step on the child, hurting it and possibly killing the kid. So, safety, when choosing a kid safe horse is always first.

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post #18 of 24 Old 03-16-2013, 10:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Dustbunny View Post
I worry that many people looking for a kid safe horse may not have the knowledge and/or ability .....
Here's another thought: What about having to prove that a kid is horse-safe before selling????
Yes definitely! I always do this - kids, adults... I want to know they're going to be good for the horses I sell and will always advertise 'to an experienced or well supervised home'. I know to many that's like real estate agents speaking of a 'sloping block', that it may mean the horse is a terror, but in my case I do this to reduce the likelihood of a potential owner being a terror! I don't buy & sell horses much though - care too much & the first one I bought as an investment, it took me a few months of prospective buyers before I found someone I was happy to let her go to - that was my appaLoosie...
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post #19 of 24 Old 03-17-2013, 07:09 AM
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I have only read the OP and a few comments so my statement may seem out of place.
In answer to the 'a horse isn't kid-safe if it has past problems' or what-not, I don't agree with that and I feel that's labeling all horses unfairly.
Of course that could possibly be true for some horses, but definitely not all, or even most I would be happy to say.
A horse can be retrained, brought back up and learn again.
I can't say a lot about breaking in horses but I've saved a few small ponies from the knackeries, each of them where what most people would call problem horses, the one I own currently, 'Flicka,' i bought around 6 months ago from the local sale yards, no one else wanted her as she was nuts, the only other bidder was the knacker.
I eventually convinced my mum that I could handle her, and she paid the small price of $90 for her, instantly regretting it as it took as a solid three hours to get her on the float. She's only very little so she wasn't hard to handle, but she was continuously flipping herself backwords and kicked a guy several times.
We brought her home and the same thing happened, she was what my dad called a 'ferral.'
Now she's the sweetest pony you could ever meet, you can chuck a tarp over her, she'll follow you around the paddock and she's a massive smooch. She's still only a baby, so I can understand how this case is different.
Although another one is my old riding school used to buy ponies from the sale yard, one of which was again a 'ferral,' he would buck everyone who attempted to ride him and not many people had the guts to ride him, after a year of working with him, he's now the riding schools learning pony and the sweetest little fella you'll ever meet, he was 14 years old when he was retrained.

I'm only 15 so my stories and cases may be irrelivant and I may see too much good in every horse, which isn't all a bad thing if you ask me, but i believe a horse can be retrained to be a some-what 'child safe horse' or as child safe as a horse can be.
But then again, horses are like people in which they all have different personalities and some horses are naturally wonderful childrens mounts, others aren't.
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post #20 of 24 Old 03-17-2013, 08:38 AM
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If this gal makes issue with the seller, if she's not buying, she's concerning herself with something that isn't hers to be concerned about. ie not minding her own business. My arab arrived with baggage, a huge issue with adults, kicked, bolted, you name it. With kids he was a completely different horse.
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bucking , kid safe , selling

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