please can you help me? I am seeking the advice of fellow horse lover in the hope to collating info material in the aid of helping young children become good horsemen/women. i.e how feed a horse, how to groom a horse and so on. Is anybody willing to help by giving me some fantastic advice within this subject, maybe you can tell me your story of how you got started. I now Live in Australia but growing up in the U.K, the difference is quite big in style and attitude. So I am all ears. So who is up for alittle bit of help then? thanks for your support and remember this is for the children.:lol:
Hey what part of the U.K? I was born and bred there :p
Im sorry if this is just me being totally thick but are you asking for advise on teaching little ones to become good horsepeople?
If so i have some great ideas but i got kinda confused reading your post.
I'm not sure how well I can help. I think I still have it but I had to do up a manual a while ago for a "Pony Program" we did for some kids. Some of the stuff could probably be argued as there are a tonne of people here that know more than me. The things are just suggestions and they were either from my own noggin or from an internet search.
It was just a rough draft but your welcome to have a look at it. If I can find it, I'll post it on here so people can note changes that could be made to it to make it right. I'll get it up as soon as I find it. Hope this helped!
OK.. so this one is a bit long. Sorry for the grammar mistakes. Obviously, this is not quite what kids would want to read, but it might help you get some ideas of what you could include. I`m big on safety so I think it would be important to emphasize this. I`m totally open to opinions on this:
Horse and Pony Safety
Horses and ponies can be easily spooked¹ or harmed in the wrong conditions. To make sure you and the animal stay safe, there are many guidelines you need to follow.
§ Do not find yourself behind a horse². He or she may get scared and kick.
§ Make sure the horse you’re approaching knows you are near. Say hello or greet the horse by its name if you know it. This way the horse will not be frightened when you appear to him or her.
§ Always talk to horses in a calm voice. This will relax them. A calm horse is a friendly horse.
§ Do not make any sudden movements or loud noises to scare a horse.
§ To give a horse a treat, always place the treat in the palm of your hand with your hand completely flat.
§ Never strike a horse and take special care with his or her head and face.
§ Always lead a horse on his or her left side by the head. A horse cannot see you if you are too far ahead or too far back from the horses’ line of sight.
Barn and Field Safety
If not careful, a barn and a field can be a dangerous place. You must always be aware of your surroundings when in these areas.
§ Be careful when entering a barn that has horses. The horses may be eating or a staff member may be working with the horses. To keep everyone safe, do not run, play or make loud noises while inside.
§ Do not leave objects lying on the floor. Pick up any items you may be using so people and horses do not trip and fall.
§ Do not place items where they may fall. If these items fall on or near a horse it could get spooked.
§ Do not climb stalls or fences. You may fall and get hurt.
§ Do not bring any food into a field with horses. They love food and can be very aggressive with each other to get treats. You may get pushed around or crowed by horses.
§ Do not run or play in the field. It can be very dangerous.
§ If a gate was closed when you were entering the field, make sure that gate is closed as soon as you get into the field. If it was open, leave it open. It was left that way for a reason.
¹ to be frightened. When spooked, a horse may kick out or rear up.
² will refer to both horses and ponies
Horses are a big responsibility. They need a lot of care and attention. Here is a list of various practices you should be aware of before taking on the responsibility of looking after a horse.
§ Horses thrive on routine. You must feed horses regularly at around the same times each day.
§ Do not feed horses too much food. They can get very sick and sometimes die.
§ Do not feed horses big chunks of treats. Always cut apples and carrots into smaller pieces so the horses will not choke.
§ Horses need to be fed good quality hay.
§ Do not give horses rotten food.
§ Make sure the feed buckets are clean.
§ Horses need clean water to drink.
§ You must groom a horse often. This will remove dust, dirt and sweat from the horse’s coat. It also increases blood flow and helps you check for injuries.
§ A horse’s feet should be cleaned well daily. Any dirt and rocks should be removed regularly. A dirty hoof can get infected.
§ Make sure the horses’ hooves get trimmed when necessary.
§ A horse’s brushes should be kept clean. Once you use them, wipe or comb them clean.
§ Tack³ should always be clean before use. Dirty tack can rub the horse’s skin and cause irritation.
§ Exercise the horse daily but not excessively.
§ Horses need regular veterinary checkups.
§ If you notice any changes in a horse’s behaviour or eating habits, contact your veterinarian and explain what you’ve noticed.
Barn and Field Care
A horse’s home also needs great care and maintenance. The barn and the field should always be a priority when it comes to cleanliness.
§ Barns should be swept often to keep the floor clean from dirt and any small objects that may harm a horse.
§ Loose boards need to be removed and nails should be hammered in flush with the boards. Any nails protruding from the wood can scratch or cut a horses’ skin.
§ No nails or screws should be left laying on the floor or outside where horses roam. They can get the nails or screws stuck in their feet where it can be hard for your eye to spot them.
§ Feed and treats should be kept in buckets or containers with covers so if horses get loose, they cannot overeat and harm themselves. Also, this can help to keep away rodents and other wild animals.
§ Water buckets both in the barn and the field should always be kept clean and filled.
§ Broken fences, gates, and doors should be mended as soon as possible.
§ Pick up any rocks or garbage you may find in the field. Fields should be kept tidy since this is where the horses spend the majority of their day.
§ Tools should be kept in one area where they are easily located in an emergency but where horses and people will not come in contact with them and be harmed.
³ Saddles, saddle blankets, bridles, halters and lead ropes can all be considered tack.
Ok, here we go again:
Grooming a horse
What you’ll need:
· Rubber/Plastic curry comb
· Hard bristle brush (Dandy)
· Soft bristle brush (Body)
· Small soft bristle brush (Face)
· 2 sponges
· Hoof pick
1. First you must approach the horse in a calm manner. Do not sneak up on it or make sudden movements. Say the horses name in a calm soothing voice so the horse knows you are near and will not be startled by you. Rub your hands on the horse as you walk by.
2. Always touch a horse gently. Never be rough with the horse especially around its head. It will become head shy and will not want you to touch its head any more. It is important that a horse is comfortable with you touching its head so you can check the horse’s eyes, nose, and other parts of the horse’s head for problems like sores or cuts.
3. First use the curry comb to loosen the dirt lodged in the horse’s coat. Always start near the head and work down to the horse’s tail. Make sure the comb under the mane and the belly as well. Do not use this comb on the horse’s face or other bony areas like the legs.
4. Use the hard bristle brush to sweep away the dirt and end each sweep with a flicking motion away from the horse. Do not use this brush on the face and legs.
5. Now follow with the soft bristle brush to smooth the coat. All the dirt should be gone and now the coat will be shiny and smooth. Use this brush over the coat and you can finish with some shine spray (optional). Warning: Be careful. Some horses fear spray bottles and they should never be used on these horses, especially if the horse is tied up and cannot get away. In this case, spray some on a cloth away from the horse; sound can startle it. Rub the cloth onto the coat for the same effect without the fright.
6. Use a sponge to wash the face or a brush to wipe away dust. To wash or brush the horse’s face, you must remove the halter. If the horse is tied up, take off the halter and attach it loosely to the horse’s. Use a damp sponge to clean around the eyes, nostrils and mouth. If using a brush, just wipe the fur and be very careful of the eyes and nostrils. Replace the horse’s halter.
7. You need a separate sponge to clean under the horse’s tail. Never mix this sponge with the face sponge. Use an indicator to tell you the difference such as a different colour or size. Use this damp sponge to wipe gently underneath the horse’s tail.
8. Cleaning the horse’s feet should only be done be some who is able to control the horse and is used to the horse’s manners. Some horses can be particular about which feet are done in what order or can lean on the person with a lot of weight. Also there is the chance that you could get kicked or injured while cleaning the horse’s feet. This is true with any activity done with or around a horse. Once you become familiar with the horse and its temperament, you can begin cleaning the feet. With you hoof pick in the opposite hand, you must stand next to the horse’s leg and face away from the head. While running your hand down the inside of the leg, talk to the horse and give a command like “Lift” or “Pick up”, whatever the horse is used to. Tug gently once you reach the horse’s fetlock and the horse should pick up its hoof. Cradle the horse’s hoof in your hand and use your leg for support. Run the hoof pick down the underside of the hoof. Be careful of the v-shaped bump, this is the horse’s frog. It should not be hooked with the pick so be gentle with this area. Make sure to get all the dirt from around the edges and around the frog. All the packed dirt may have rocks that could penetrate the hoof’s sole. You should inform a vet of any problems you find with the horse’s feet as soon as possible. It could be serious and needs to be treated. A funny odour should also be told about to a vet. This could be thrush. In this case, the hoof should be rinsed with a thrush medication or a bleach and water mixture. If you are not sure what thrush is or what it smells like, contact the vet. Do not try to treat it yourself first!
I have the same prob. with my lil girl > I have just came to the conclusion that horses are not 4 everyone. But dont give just give it a little more time.
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