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kindredspirit 07-14-2010 09:07 AM

Baby Humans Around Horses? Yes/No and Why?
Just curious what everyone's opinion is about having human babies around horses and to what extent? Let's assume the horse is good mannered and your two hands are available.

EX: If you're wearing a baby in a Baby Bjorn, would you still feel comfortable leading a horse around?

Just a hypothetical question :D

franknbeans 07-14-2010 09:18 AM

If they are still in a baby bjorn, they are too small, IMO. I used to take my son when he was about 3 to the barn with me. He was old enough to play with his trucks in the sawdust pile in the corner of the arena while I rode.:D

My niece trained her young horse with her son on back in a backpack, and was fine, but it is difficult for sure. Your attention can easily be diverted from the horse to the kid just long enough for the horse to see goblins. But, I can see it in the right situation.

waterbuggies 07-14-2010 09:24 AM

Never been in that spot, but I would think that I would put the baby down in a car seat maybe in the bed of a pickup truck near so I could keep an eye on the baby but the horse isn't likely to get up in the back of the truck. Just so if the horse was to bump into me and i fell I wouldnt fall on the baby, even a prefect horse isn't perfect. Friend of a friend had her 3 yr old grand daughter on her hip and walked around her horse(perfect horse mind u) and the horse kicked out at a horse fly or something biting and kicked the baby and killed her. It would be so hard to live with something like that, and to look at a horse again. Better safe than sorry.

MN Tigerstripes 07-14-2010 10:16 AM

Yup. I have babies around my horses all the time. I was around horses a ton when I was a babies as where all my siblings, cousins, parents, aunts/uncles, grandparents etc.

Basically when I do have the small children/babies or really any child that doesn't have horse experience the drill is the same. Proper shoes, stay next to me, everyone ALWAYS on the same side of the horse. There is always at least one adult per small child, plus one adult to handle the horse. Heck it's a party point when people come over for the holidays/birthdays/etc. The kids (and adults) get to go on pony rides or feed the horses carrots or just pet them. Oftentimes I ride double with the baby/small child. If necessary I'll protect them with my body. Which I've had to do before.

Is it entirely safe? No, but nothing with horses is entirely safe. My niece had her first "pony ride" when she was 6 mnths old, her first fall she was about a year and a half (she was completely fine), and is now 5 and a half and is pretty darn smart about horses. She is still completely supervised and knows (under pain of death or scary aunt) that she is NEVER to go near the horses by herself. She's a lot more careful around horses than most random adults that come out to my house. The great thing? She understands the care that goes into horses, that they need us to be responsible for them while still having that starry-eyed love of horses. She wants to "run, Aunt, make him run" but understands that she needs to walk before she can run. I think it's being around horses from the very beginning that has given her this attitude.

I guess I see that my niece or any other baby/child whatever could die/be injured by many many many things. My brother untied the stairgate (triple knotted) when I was a baby and I fell down a flight of concrete stairs. Mom was out feeding the horses and didn't want to bring us. Of course, things happened when she brought us out too. That's the way of life.

I do have to give a disclaimer here though. I wouldn't bring a baby/child out if I was training or dealing with a younger horse or a horse that didn't have the best manners. I kept kids away from Soda until I was certian that his ground manners were safe. Of course, he LOVES children.

TaMMa89 07-14-2010 10:41 AM

I don't see anything wrong if you take even a little baby at a stable to greet horses. Wouldn't still stay there for a long time with him, absolutely wouldn't leave him alone or give him anyone else (except the dad) when doing other chores. Wouldn't either do main chores with horses and the baby coevally, horses are large and very strong animals and human baby is very breakable compared to them... what if something happens?

May good time to take a child with you for longer time or when doing something more is when he's few years old and don't need anyone to watch and fulfill his instant needs all the time? I mean, when he's old enough to express himself and his needs without becoming interpretted, can be left also under supervision of other, a bit more alien people and can wait a bit if he needs something... i.e. when he's a little more independent and there's someone who helps you with the horses or the child at the stable.

May you notice I'm childless at the moment... Perhaps that'll still be topical for me some day.

AmberPick 07-15-2010 09:09 PM

I was going to post something similar.. How far pregnant people were before they stopped riding.. If they stopped at all.. My Aunt rode until she was nine months pregnant and always had her daughter up on her huge albino mare.. She never had a problem but I see it a little differently..

My son, Kaden, hasn't been around so many horses that he is used to them. He naturally doesn't want to be too up close to them because they are so much bigger, and it took a lot of coaxing to get him up on a pony (which he loved after he got over the fear) but he won't sit on a full sized horse. Now my Aunts horses were mild as kittens but would I let my son be around them even with me five feet away? Nope. Accidents happen, what if they accidently stepped on him and he screamed and spooked them? While I am out there it is fine as long as I am between him and the horse, but regardless of how docile your horse is, they still are wild animals and have natural instincts like no other. Would it be the horses fault if they hurt my son? Hell no, it would be mine. I can't say that I wouldn't kill the horse out of reaction if they killed my son though. I'd kill a human if they killed my son, too, though.

Kids come first, horses second. And I wouldn't ride with a baby bojrn, either.. Leading, yes. I'm a really over protective mom, though, so that's just my whole view on the thing!!

This came off really blunt - I am not dissing anyone else's opinion or anything! What other people do is not my business, I just couldn't handle it if did something happen!

TaMMa89 07-16-2010 11:24 AM


Originally Posted by MN Tigerstripes (Post 690800)
Of course, he LOVES children.

It's a bit offtopic now, but has any of you noticed how some of animals sense when there's a little child around them? Of course animals are animals and some of them are no way child compatible, but I've for example seen some quite "adults active" horses turn oddly more careful when you put a small child in their saddle.

MN Tigerstripes 07-16-2010 11:37 AM

Oh yeah. Soda is definitely like that. He can be a bit "hot" for a knowledgeble adult, esp off property. He's ok for beginner adults, doesn't test them, but doesn't really listen that sharply.

You put a kid on his back and he's gold. Nice steady walk, never any attitude or spookiness. He'll feel that they're a little unsteady and either slow down or stop completely until they are good again. On the ground he always comes up to the kids and smells their faces/hair. Sometimes he'll even start grooming their hair. :D

I had another old gelding that was very similar. Flame is good with kids as in she been around a lot of kids, but at the same time she is careful with them, you know?

corinowalk 07-16-2010 12:18 PM

I brought both my kids around horses from the time they were a few weeks old. There are a few things to take precautions with but nothing crazy. I would lead my horse with a baby bjorn on without a problem. They were pretty easy horses to get along with but when I had my daughter with me...i had a plan. If the horse started acting up, I would let go of the lead. Were in the country. If a horse is running loose, all it takes is a shake of the feed can and they are at the barn. I wouldn't ride a baby with me, no matter the horse. The only horse that its safe to co ride a baby on is the ones in front of walmart.

The only other thing we had to be careful of was the barn dust. Babies have sensitive lungs and can get pretty sick if there is too much of anything in the air. I never groomed with my daughter in the pack...I always came after feed time (no hay dust in the air). Its all about planning and taking your time.

My son didn't have the opportunity to be around horses as a baby. He isn't fearful of horses, he actually quite likes them. My daughter is completly fearless. Thats not always a good thing.

PaintHorseMares 07-16-2010 05:16 PM


Originally Posted by TaMMa89 (Post 692978)
It's a bit offtopic now, but has any of you noticed how some of animals sense when there's a little child around them? Of course animals are animals and some of them are no way child compatible, but I've for example seen some quite "adults active" horses turn oddly more careful when you put a small child in their saddle.

It is certainly true. Our mare Lady loves kids for some reason. She can be running around kicking up her heels one minute, then you saddle her up and put a kid on her and she's like a big teddy bear, and when I ride her through the neigborhoods, she loves to stop and get attention from the children (and there are never any treats involved).

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