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The Many Adventures of a Horse Newbie.
Yes, the title is correct, am am new to horses. So new, in fact, I don't even have a horse and probably will not for at least a year. This blog/journal type thing is not only to document my own misadventures in both gaining more experience and attempting to buy myself a horse, but also to get any sort of information possible.
So lets start with the beginning, shall we? I am a 17 year old art student, bound for her foundation year for a BFA. Will she go for a Masters? Who knows. Anyway, this whole 'moving away to school' thing, as well as the whole 'starving artist' thing are providing to be the two biggest difficulties in obtaining a horse, but we'll get to that later. I love such active and vigorous sports as reading, writing, drawing, painting, watching movies, laying in the grass..... ok, I bike, swim and ski too. And ride, when I can, though not as often as I would like. A few other things I am passionate (read: obsessive) about are Doctor Who, goldfish, and the Disney parks. But lets get on to horses before this starts reading too much like a date ad and I find myself typing about how much I love long walks on the beach.
I wasn't lucky enough growing up to be around horses much. At best my Mom thinks they are pretty and I'm faily sure my Dad thinks horses are a type of dog he happens to be alergic to. However, I was able to sqeeze about two years of lessons when I was younger. I got up to simple jumping and, for some crazy reason, trick riding when the stable I was learning at changed owners and, well, it was time to leave. That was 7-10 years ago, and since then it was rare to even get around horses, rarer still to get to ride them. So my riding/horse care skills are a little, er, rusty, to say the least. But I've filled the years with learning as much as I can about horses, from their evolutionary history, to breeds, to anatomy. Of course I sketch and paint horses, they are a favorite subject of mine. But I can still say that I am barely above the level of newbie that loves 'horsies' and wants a fanciful unicorn to keep in her backyard. Right now anyway.
The plan is to get myself involded in anything involving horses, possibly to pick up again with lessons and/or volunteer at a stable. And, of course, read up on horse care and join, say, a horse forum. And save, save, save for a horse. Then the plan is, after a year or two, to board a horse. That said, if for some reason or other I just can't care for a horse properly I'll just have to wait a while longer. I've waited 17 years, a few more years can't hurt.
So, well, thats it for now I think. Anyone have any advice or stories to help a newbie on her way?
This is a great place to learn about horses! Good thinking by joining this forum! It has helped me in many ways along the year or so. Even if you aren't new you still learn a lot about tack and riding styles etc.
Well, I know it hasn't been that long, but I thought I would update. After much searching all over the vast wastelands of the internet, I've come to the conclusion that the town my art school is in (Dawson City in the Yukon) has nary a stable to be heard of. Which sort of kills my plan to work/volunteer/take lessons at a stable over the school year to relearn some horse skills dead. This leaves a few options, to make friends in Dawson who have horses and force them to teach me (or bribe them) or to find someone in the Edmonton area with horses willing to help me out. I know I can learn absolutly anything I want on the internet, but for me having some real experience in caring for horses is an absolute must. Now, some friends of mine have friends that have horses, so I'll work from there.
And, of course, the more I research the more millions of questions pop into my head, including such wonderful, feel good questions of "How am I going to afford this?" Lucky I have what must be two of the best parents in the world who are not only paying for most of my first year (I was lucky enough to get a good scholarship as well) they are also going to be paying for the remainder of a trip to Disney World next year that I have been saving up for for a while as a present for getting said scholarship. Still, horses are expensive, and I have to consider not only the cost of the horse, but costs for boarding, food, vet bills, training, (if I'm missing anything just tell me). And of course I have no idea how much everything will cost. Which leads me to my fist list of newbie questions:
How much does it cost, generally, to board a horse? Adding on extra costs like training, or vet bills, how much will keeping a horse cost in total?
Any other college-age kids out there with horses with any advice to share?
Is there anyone in the Edmonton area willing to help a girl learn more about horse care?
What are the most important things, in your opinion, for someone researching horse care to learn first?
Haha, you know what it's time for?
It's time for another fairly content-lacking update, that's what it's time for!
Well, the more I think about the logistics of buying and boarding a horse, the more it seems to get bumped and shoved further into my future. But I'm ok with that, really, because I want to be very sure when I purchace any horse that I will be able to care for it properly for it's entire life. Besides, it's a goal to work towards. My parents are very sceptical, thinking that to be able to buy a horse within the next 5 years I would have to win the lottery. According to my car-racing dad, boarding a horse is more expensive then his racing and maintaining his car. Now that is something I'm scpetical about, considering the cost of gas, replacing parts, updating the engine, crew, the giant car trailer, driving said giant car trailer to races, race entry fee's, reading equpment and tires. And that the only info he has on the cost of horses is that all his rich friends have horses and, therefore, horses are crazy expensive (I know, it made me scratch my head a bit too). But more research on my part will be done.
Even if buying a horse is basically impossible for a young artist like me, there are things I can do. Like volunteer and/or take lessons at a stable, as I've mentioned before. Seeing as how Dawson does not have a stable, the current plan is to volunteer/take lessons at a stable just outside of the city when I come back home for the summer.
In another attempt to learn more about horses, I went out and bought myself 'The Dummies Guide To Horses'. It may be a little laughable, but it did turn out to house some good basic information. Hey, it's a starting point. Hopefully I won't look like a complete fool when I show up at a stable to offer myself up for volunteering in exchange for a discount in lessons. *Ponders if drawing the horses counts as volunteering*.
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