Childrens home children coming to visit - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 5 Old 07-15-2014, 05:35 AM Thread Starter
Yearling
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
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Childrens home children coming to visit

Hi all
So my dad just recently retired as the lawyer for a childrens home where he was on the board of trustees for 35 years. Our family went to a leaving dinner held for him at the home and all the kids danced and performed and some of the older ones who have now left the home spoke about the time they spent with dad. It was really lovely and I asked if it would be a possibility for any of the kids to come out and visit our little lifestyle property just out of town.
I spoke to dad tonight and there is a 7 year old boy there who is completely horse mad so we are going to arrange for him to visit soon with one of the carers to begin with and possibly then have him come out on a regular basis on his own if he enjoys it.
I am a little nervous about the responsibility of having a child that young around my two horses even though they are very well behaved. What would other people feel comfortable having a child that age doing around their horses?
Of course to start with would make sure he had the right footwear, riding wouldn't be on the cards, at least to start with anyway. And if we did get to that stage he would be led on our quiet horse at a walk with someone walking next to him (and a helmet on of course) but would need to make sure all parties were happy with this first. Anyone have any ideas of some fun things that we could do with him that don't involve getting too up close and personal with the horses?
kiwi79 is offline  
post #2 of 5 Old 07-15-2014, 05:40 AM
Trained
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Germany- but not German =D
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Maybe speak to a riding school and see what safety measures they put in place?
A lot of schools I know let kids start lessons at 6, and so long as he listens and is respectful then he should be fine. You should give him a quick brief on WHY you have to be quiet around horses, not jump out at them or walk behind them.. think back to when you started. My trainer scared the bejeebus outta us so we'd listen to everything and take it in ;)
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post #3 of 5 Old 07-15-2014, 07:42 AM
Yearling
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
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That is great your offering this boy a chance to come out and be with the horses, I was a foster parent for 8 years and the horses were very therapeutic for my older kids in care.

Explain the rules, let him know the consequences for not following the rules. Children his age are able to understand rules and consequences very well, keep them simple, black and white. Then give him a curry and a brush and teach him how to brush the horse Show him the hooves, teeth if your horses are good about getting hand fed let him give them a little treat, if not let him hold a bucket with a little treat in it.

I would also have him help out with some chores maybe cleaning water buckets, cleaning a stall or two. Kids this age generally have shorter attention spans and like to change activities after about 15 minutes.

I would definitely find a way for him to get a lead line ride on the horse, every kids fantasy of horses is riding them, even it is only for a short time on a lead line. You will build him up and give him confidence, it would mean the world to him I am sure. Have fun, and take lots of pictures that he can have to keep.
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post #4 of 5 Old 07-15-2014, 08:02 AM
Green Broke
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
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Your Dad, being a lawyer would know of the legal complications involved in having this boy at your place. I think it is a very nice thing you are thinking of doing for him. If he is really horse crazy, this will be a wonderful opportunity for him.
I would do as GSS described, talking about the horse, rules etc and then introducing him to the quiet one for some grooming time, then if he is ok with that let him have a short ride on the horse. Then also do some barn chores with him.
I'm guessing this young fellow will think he is in heaven. In time you may have a young riding companion who will be glad to help out with many jobs around the place.
I have done this with youngsters and it has been a good thing for both of us.
I have found that through this love of horses, the most unusual people have been great friends because of this one interest. I developed such a friendship with a young girl (12 Yrs) and we were the best friends and riding companions for many years. Her parents said they never had any problems with her during her teen years because she was too busy with me and the horses, a win win situation for both of us.
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post #5 of 5 Old 07-16-2014, 03:34 AM Thread Starter
Yearling
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
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That's a good idea about asking a riding school, I will definitely do that. And going over all of the safety aspects of being around a horse. Dad said no riding at least to start with but hopefully we will be able to get permission from the home for him to have some rides on a lead line if he wants to come back.
I don't spend much time with kids so good to know about the short attention span too and will definitely take lots of photos for him.
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