Taking a green horse to their first show...
By this, I mean taking them to a show but not actually showing them... just to get them used to the surroundings so they don't freak when you actually show them.
So my question is... What kinds of things do you do with them? Things like riding or walking them around the show grounds, riding in the arena during breaks, etc. What else do you guys do to get them used to it?
I think this is such a great idea for green horses!! Basically just do what you already stated. Walk them around, ride them, warm them up when the other riders are in the arena warming up, tie him to the trailer and let him stand there for a bit. Just so you know he wont freak out, ect. Get him used to the surroundings, the loud noises, like the crowd, the announcing speakers if there are any. Just act like you are in the show with him, but your not actually going to ride in the show.
Hope all goes well!
I walk my horses around the rail of the show arena (inside the pen) during the break & let them look at everything - spectators, bleachers, trash cans, announcers, show office, etc. I get them into the horse traffic to get them comfortable with the closeness of the other horses. I will also take them to the center of the pen and lounge them to let them know that it is still work time.
When we are back at the trailer, I make sure they get a drink of water & then let them stand with a full hay bag in front of them. My horses have to stand tied at the trailer for hours on end alone. Usually I load my horses onto the trailer vs. tying to the outside of my trailer.
If I have extra time, I'll take the horse for a walk around the show grounds to see the sights and munch on some grass. It helps keep the horse relaxed and comfortable in the show setting.
Ill be doing this with Chance soon, and im like scared xD of what she might do :P I think the first time im seriously gonna put some calmer into her, cause shes sensative at new areas. That was the first few times will be calm and she will realized it nice to be calm at new places lol!
I rode mine in it, but i did it as a practice, so I wasn't judged. Also just ride it around all the other horses. It worked for mine!
At our shows we can come and school over the fences on friday before the show on saturday. usually i just bring a green horse on friday and let them see the sights and walk around a bit, hack in the arena, and hopefully jump a few things. when they're farther along i take them on saturday as well and show "not to be judged" in the 18 in division, just to get them in the ring by themselves and used to the outside commotion and noise of the announcer. Some horses handle it better then others so you have to play it by ear and see what's going to be best for your horse's training at the time. The key is not to overwhelm them and to make it a positive experience for them.
Thanks for the ideas :D
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