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Painted Horse please dont ever bring up slitting a horses throat to kill it again. I am only so tough until a animals gets hurt or killed.
My riding teacher always brings a gun. I am not scared of animals. If we were to meet a cougar on the trail I would hop off my horse let him run and I would bolt up a tree(yes I can climb like a monkey). However some people are creepy so a gun is there for that purpose.
 

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Painted Horse please dont ever bring up slitting a horses throat to kill it again. I am only so tough until a animals gets hurt or killed.
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That's the facts of horse ownership. Sometimes bad things happen and it's alot easier to think and plan ahead of time rather than wait untill something happens.
 

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If we were to meet a cougar on the trail I would hop off my horse let him run and I would bolt up a tree(yes I can climb like a monkey).

You realize that a cougar can climb like monkey as well.
 

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Each state has its own laws some states it is broken down by county. Here in Ohio my CCW is good in several states. However I can not carry in the parks. So know where you can and can not legally carry. The classes you take will teach you all the laws.

That all being said as a ex law enforcement officer. There are several things to keep in mind when you carry a gun 24/7. First it is NOT YOUR GUN. When you take a gun someplace and something happens remember you are bring a gun to the fight and again it is NOT YOUR GUN. It is the first person who gets to it. The training most states offer is not truly enough so go and find other type of training on use and retention of your weapon.

Also if you carry be prepared to use it. If not leave it at home for the reason listed above. It is better to be judged by 12 then carried by 6.

Also. Make sure if you are going to carry a hand gun while riding that your horse is not scared of guns. Nothing like shooting off the back of a horse who has never had a gun go off around them little lone on their back.
 

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Painted Horse please dont ever bring up slitting a horses throat to kill it again. I am only so tough until a animals gets hurt or killed.
My riding teacher always brings a gun. I am not scared of animals. If we were to meet a cougar on the trail I would hop off my horse let him run and I would bolt up a tree(yes I can climb like a monkey). However some people are creepy so a gun is there for that purpose.
What would be the better thing if the person didn't have a gun? Let the horse suffer?

You might want to read up a little more on cougars. They'd be on you before you got to the tree. You do NOT run. You're best to stay on your horse and look really big.



Here is a section of our living with wildlife from our agency website, although the first sentence isn't the case anymore. We are seeing more and more cougars, even coming down and going into neighborhoods and school yards.
Relatively few people will ever catch a glimpse of a cougar much less confront one. If you come face to face with a cougar, your actions can either help or hinder a quick retreat by the animal.
Here are some things to remember:

  • Stop, pick up small children immediately, and don’t run. Running and rapid movements may trigger an attack. Remember, at close range, a cougar’s instinct is to chase.
  • Face the cougar. Talk to it firmly while slowly backing away. Always leave the animal an escape route.
  • Try to appear larger than the cougar. Get above it (e.g., step up onto a rock or stump). If wearing a jacket, hold it open to further increase your apparent size. If you are in a group, stand shoulder-to-shoulder to appear intimidating.
  • Do not take your eyes off the cougar or turn your back. Do not crouch down or try to hide.
  • Never approach the cougar, especially if it is near a kill or with kittens, and never offer it food.
  • If the cougar does not flee, be more assertive. If it shows signs of aggression (crouches with ears back, teeth bared, hissing, tail twitching, and hind feet pumping in preparation to jump), shout, wave your arms and throw anything you have available (water bottle, book, backpack). The idea is to convince the cougar that you are not prey, but a potential danger.
  • If the cougar attacks, fight back. Be aggressive and try to stay on your feet. Cougars have been driven away by people who have fought back using anything within reach, including sticks, rocks, shovels, backpacks, and clothing—even bare hands. If you are aggressive enough, a cougar will flee, realizing it has made a mistake. Pepper spray in the cougar’s face is also effective in the extreme unlikelihood of a close encounter with a cougar.
 

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When a horse breaks a leg 20 miles back in to the wilderness, You have no choice but to put them down. Regardless of how much you care for them. Having done it the hard way once, I will always sneek a gun into the back country regardless of the park regulation. You won't find me shooting tin cans or squirrels with it. I won't be flashing it around. Heck, I don't even shot the rattle snakes I run across. But it will be tucked away in case it's needed. I take care of my horses. But I don't ride in an arena or at a county fairground. I ride in the wilderness and crap happens occassionally.

I have taught my horses what a gun is. I own horses to go hunting on. When a bull elk runs out, I can't always find a hitchen post to tie my horse up to before I stroll an appropriate distance away before I fire the rifle. My horses need to ground tie and stay put when the rifle barks. And part of the way I teach that is to shoot pistols off their back.

As far as cougars. They can absolutely out run you and climb faster than you and climb higher than you can. But most of the cats I've seen, check you out and then want to get out of Dodge.
 

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i'm in ks as was stated before, and a CCL cost a bit, but what's your life worth? don't be lazy, 50 bucks is cheap. if i recall, GA is one of the better CCW states, or even open carry. check your local and state laws. i would strongly recommend carrying on your person as well as it is more available.

i carry nearly 24/7, and when i ride i DO have a rifle boot where the old .30/30 resides. handgun also goes with, but i disagree a bit with eddie. he says single action revolver, i would be more apt to recommend a double action since the trigger can be pulled without needing to dock the hammer. i unfortunately don't have either so i carry a full size auto, which is part of the reason for the rifle.

i do still consider two legged creatures when i ride, although it's almost always on private land, or on a county road. but i still do consider the four legged type. there are cougars around here from time to time, and constant coyotes, as well as a new addition: hogs. being out on horseback does not mean that i want to let my guard down in any fashion and let a pest go (hogs are new, creeping up in from OK, and we do NOT want any of them at all...).

like i said, just get off your duff and go get your license and carry on your person. it can be well worth your life to do so, especially if you come across some stray two legged creatures. something i forgot out around here is METH LABS. i don't want to come up on a meth head and his meth lab with NO gun, they are extremely likely to take a whack at you no matter who ya are or why ya's there.
 

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PaintedHorse - keep in mind, that if you get caught, you might have a high price to pay. One of our Officers has a saying, "people always get caught". Not sure if he tells that to people to make them tow the line. Just sayin'.
 

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like i said, just get off your duff and go get your license and carry on your person. it can be well worth your life to do so, especially if you come across some stray two legged creatures. something i forgot out around here is METH LABS. i don't want to come up on a meth head and his meth lab with NO gun, they are extremely likely to take a whack at you no matter who ya are or why ya's there.
Ummm... shooting around a meth lab is a REALLY bad idea.
 

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That maybe. But I'd rather pay the fine and forfiet the gun than not have the proper tool to dispatch a disabled horse again. It's tucked away, I'm not threatening the wildlife or the quiet of the park. I've never had a ranger ask to frisk me or search my belongings in the back country.

The other part of the problem, is that if you put a horse down, You are not supposed to leave it laying by the trail. It's not consider appropriate to bait bears to surprise unknowing hikers walking down a path. And while I have cut up enough Elk and Moose to know that I could break a horse down small enough to move it. I don't have the desire to do that to a old companion. So the ranger would have two things to get after me about.
 

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I get it believe me. I work for fish and wildlife and walk remote areas getting to lakes to check anglers. I don't get to carry anything. Not a gun, not pepper spray nothing. And if I get caught carrying them, but trouble. I have my handy Sears crafstman knife, but that's not going to do too much in close combat. I'm always watching over my shoulder, but have found my bigger problems are really squirrels throwing sticks down on my head.
 

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It boggles my mind to think of carrying a gun on my horse. Such different cultures.

We don't have any wild animals that would attack a horse and rider - No bears, coyotes, big cats, etc. Also, because we have strict gun laws, I have never seen a person carrying a gun except a cop.

I would freak out if I saw someone riding along with a gun, lol.
 

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There is only a couple of places that guns are not allowed. And as of February 20, if Kevin is right, that law will be changed. At least for the national parks.

Short afternoon ride, I don't worry about it. For example going out to Antelope Island, which is a state park. You have to stay on the loop trails. So you are rarely more than a few miles from your truck/trailer. You have cell phone service most of the time, And if you don't have service, just climb the hill. The trails are easy, so chances of a horse getting hurt are slim. No need to worry about having to put a horse down. If you did need to, the ranger would probably be right there to help out. And he can drive his vehicle on all the trails.

But when I ride back into wilderness areas, Where It's an ALL DAY ride to get back to the truck, Where it's an ALL DAY horse ride and then a hour or two truck ride before I'll get cell service, I'm on my own, There is nobody that can come and help. In those sitituations, You need to be able to take care of things your self.

I'm not worried about strange people, I'm not going to pull a gun on a stranger. We are in the Wilderness, not a bar fight. Chances are conversation with strangers will be about fishing or the color of fall leaves, not hey give me your wallet. The biggest confrontation I've ever seen in the back country was tree huggers complaining about us having horses in the back country. And I'm not going to escalate that to a gun fight.

Most animals I don't see as threats. I had a grizzly charge us in Alaska and at the time I wished I had a gun, But we didn't and the bear backed down, in hindsight, I suspect shooting that bear would of got us killed. There is just no way you can kill something that big with pistol, At least not fast enough to save your own skin. I had a moose tree me once, and had to spend 20 minutes up a tree while she did a dance on my pack. Maybe a loud gun shot, would have sent her running. But I would have never shot her.

When you ride horses in country like this, There is no help, and things do occassionally happen.


Here we are cleaning out the eyes and ears of horse that went down in Quicksand. If you can't get the horse out of the quicksand, Is it best to just leave him to die?
 

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I have my handy Sears crafstman knife, but that's not going to do too much in close combat.
In close combat that is exactly what you want is a knife. Get a good one and learn how to use it. Much better then a gun in that situation.
 

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I've been trail riding for about 15 years and frequently ride alone. I'm in Arizona. We have all sorts of wildlife. They've never given me a problem. I have never seen a cougar. I would love to see one!

I have never felt the need to carry a gun. Of course there is a first time for everything, so someday I might be caught off-guard, but really, the wildlife leaves you alone and you are blessed to get to see them, at least that is how I feel. I have been charged by elk a couple of times, but that is because I was calling them. :lol:

I pray I never need to put my horse down in the back country. For the most part I am within 4 hours of home (when I ride alone) and when I ride further I am with a friend. (She sometimes carries a gun.)

My Dad always told me it's the two-legged animals you have to worry about, not the four-legged, lol!

What's nice about being on horseback in a wooded area, is that you can disappear and pretty much avoid the few people you see out there.

So I dunno, I don't do pack trips or anything, just trail rides. I haven't felt like I wanted a gun yet. I agree if you are out there for days or weeks, a gun would be good!
 

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I totally understand about not letting the horse suffer. I mean I just dont want to read about it lol. Anyways this is a really neat thread. Cool pics too painted horse!
 

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I'm too young to carry a gun as of now, but as soon as I am old enough I will have one. We have had issues with break-ins in my hometown, and I don't trust to many people if I am by myself. I have pepper spray and 3 knives for now...lol. I'm thinking about getting a taser at some point. At home there are quite a few guns ranging from pistols to shotguns. I know how to load and fire all of them accurately, and I have two pits that would give me some time if somebody ever tries to get in my house. At the other house we have 5 dogs outside that would scare most people away before they could ever get to the door.

I think that everyone should have a gun. There would be a lower crime rate. Who wants to rob you when they know you probably have a gun and know how to use it?
 
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