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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
What kind of horse eating things do you have around your riding spaces?

I board and ride at a barn that has a neighborhood built around it. Two sides of the arena are literally somebody's backyard fence. The fences are all wooden privacy fences except one which is a normal half size wire fence that is overgrown with plants and stuff but you can see everything in this backyard. These are the most active people with so much stuff in their backyard it is unbelievable :shock: There is:

A pet pig (pink potbellied porker, about a year old)

A covered shelter right next to the fence with a boat and a bunch of other stuff stored underneath including this huge umbrella that goes with the boat.

For a while there was a pink tent set up in the yard.

A huge blue blowup pool (floating balls and water toys included) during the summer and for Christmas they got a trampoline with a flapping bright blue cover for the springs which goes crazy in the wind and yes I have been riding when the people come out to jump and scream on the thing.

Automatic sprinklers which my horse and I were fortunate enough to discover for the first time when one of them popped up and started spraying water when we were right by the fence! Scared my horse sideways.

A wooden play fort and swing set, also right next to the fence. One day one of the residents decided to take the swings and flip them over the top while we were going by - yeah....

All of this is worse in the wind and the people have no horse sense when they are out working when we are out riding! They just don't think about it. My gelding works pretty well most of the time but he definitely has his moments when I ask him to be brave going down that side of the arena, especially when the pig is out. Can't really blame him. Good practice for shows? lol

Anyone else?
 

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Hoola hoops, there were four or five of them in the arena and my lesson horse refused to go near them.

One of the other ponies in the paddock next to the arena, this is like an 11hh Shetland and the horse i rode was an almost 17hh thoroughbred.

Then theres the usual leaves that appear in the arena specifically so they can kill the lesson horses.
 

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You never know what could be hiding under the dreaded jump standard pile.

We have wrens that are totally capable of taking out a full grown horse.

The mounting block has been know to jump out and snarl at horses as they pass by.

Some horses can see spooky ghosts in the mirrors.

And God forbid the big door is open. There are predators just lurking out there, waiting for their chance to strike.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Oh yeah blowing leaves is another one for us too. There are many trees lining the arena so we have a nice layer that will blow around in the wind!

Nicely written QHH lol
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How about a life-sized black & white plastic cow "tied" to the front fence? That got most of the horses that came by, including most of mine-LOL!
 

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The green folding chair will cause my 3 year old to jump out of his skin about the 17th time we pass it. It's perfectly safe to ignore the first 16 times, of course.
 

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Pigeons. About 25 of them. A pigeon explosion as we were entering the arena ended with me almost taking a hoof directly to the face and me on the ground with my pants full of snow.

We all know pigeons are world class horse assassins. I can't blame her.

there's also a square patch of sunlight from a broken hole in the roof that is sometimes terrifying. Because, you know. Sun and stuff....
 

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We have a monster that lives in the corner of our manege - and what makes it really scary is that its totally invisible!!!
 

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The mounting block- it's always changing its location in the arena and woah...what?! How did it teleport over there from the last time it was in here!? It must be bad it shall eat me!!
 

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Shadows. When riding my horse around sunset, he'll start snorting and sidestepping away from his own shadow.
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We don't have a nice arena at my place so you either ride in the pasture or down the road.

Stumps
Cattle
The pig farm - not pigs, just the smell and noise.
Corn huskers
 

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The arena I would expect to the the scariest was the last place I boarded. It was an outdoor arena, with nice footing. It was surrounded on two sides with woods, and the woods were a part of a pasture, so there were occasionally other horses and animals crashing through the trees. One side bordered a trailer park, which housed lots of kids, dogs, cats, loud vehicles. We had people grilling in the yard bordering the riding arena, mowing their lawn, etc. There was even a swing set in one of the yards that bordered the arena. Those people had a toddler that would push himself around in one of those plastic toy cars. The other side was the barn yard area. They property was fully fenced and horses would be turned out in the yard at times. There was a pot bellied pig there too, and cats, and a miniature horse. Inside the arena, we had obstacle trail stuff, including a mail box full of paper and water bottles, a bridge, etc. The odd thing is, this was not the scariest riding arena for my horse...

The stable we boarded at before had an indoor. It was an empty indoor, with an outdoor just outside the one side of the arena. Nobody used the outdoor because it was never dragged so the footing was hard. There was a pasture out back and to the other side that nobody used because that barn owner was determined not to let horses on her precious grass so they all stayed on dry lots. The other side of the arena was just open to the area where the stalls were. My horse lived in those stalls. However, this arena was not her favorite place to be. She was often jumpy, and she would freak out every time snow started sliding off the roof in the winter. I think it may have been the acoustics in there that scared her.

The arena we have now is not super scary. It's in the middle of my grandfather's property. One side has the barn and utility building across the driveway. The other side is an empty field with the road just beyond that. The back borders the pasture that my horse lives in during the summer, and the other side is next to the round pen. There's nothing particularly scary on any side, though my horses did recently spook at something in the woods by the trees by the one corner. She tends to spook most when there's not much to spook about. I think she lets her guard down when it's quiet, and then jumps out of her skin when something moves. When it's chaos all around her, she seems to just expect the unexpected.
 

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Didn't you know that trained pole bending horses find poles in the corner of the arena terrifying? It was hilarious. All of the horses would not go near the pile of poles, they were blowing at them, and spooking. The sad thing is most of the horses were trained as rodeo horses, they could pole bend without riders. But when you put them in a pile they are terrifying ;P.
 

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The four orange cones that aren't even a little bit scary when arranged in a large square are suddenly terrifying when arranged in a smaller square. (BTW, this is the funniest thread ever!)
 

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A place I boarded at would put the horse manure in the arena. the horses would walk around and turn it into powder. Yeah my mare ran in there ONCE after it rained. After sliding on her side (like she was sliding into home pace) she was not inclined to run in there after that. Now the arena I ride in has 3ft pipes (what used to be a fence line) sooo I try to NOT go near them. Don't need to be impaled on one of them...
 

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I think one of the funniest arena problems was with a racehorse. He was a big fellow, had won several races and was with me for about nine months. This horse had a wicked sense of humour and if he could cause trouble, he would, mostly this was when he met other horses going in the opposite direction where by he would show them all how to perform with all four legs off the ground!
I worked this big long horse as if he were a dressage horse and he went from having a weal back end to being well proportioned and a lot stronger than he had been.

I decided to take him to a dressage contest. It was interesting as he was working well in the warm up but, every now and then did some high school performance just to show off. I never can me near to being decanted from him but several other riders parts company because of his antics.

Come our time we entered the arena and before I had time to walk all the way around the bell rang, we went up the centre line straight as a die. Good halt, moved off at the trot and then the fun started! He saw himself in the mirrors and immediately his head came up, he stiffened and was doing a power trot, almost a piaffe! He got to the corner marker still heading straight to the horse ahead of him, two strides away from the mirror the explosion came, with a snort and a sharp dive to the left, we nearly shot back up the centre line . I held my right rein to get somewhere near the track and he ended up seeing himself in the other mirror!
Honestly there were five mirrors in that arena and everyone of them was an excuse for a performance,
I did get a couple of marks, mostly for sitting tight and for livening up the judges day.

I later took him and worked him in the arena and he settled OK. Next test I did on him he was third and then in the next section up he worked really well and won. Not bad for a racehorse that was fit enough to run!
 

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A friend of mine was told by a "medium" that the reason her horse would spook in the arena at the same spot each time was because there was a ghost of an old man sitting on the fence there.
 
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