Best Ways to Bond With Your Horse

You don’t have to have a lot of talent and skills to know how to bond with your horse, you just need patience, a great amount of understanding and of course, love. Owning a horse is extra work and just paying the boarding, and letting someone take care of them half the day does not determine a strong connection. A bond is created away from stress, workload, and demands, as horses are accustomed to quiet places. A bond begins when you genuinely take care of them and this guide will help you to exactly do that.

Be consistent, fair and firm as a leader. Always communicate clearly regarding your horse’s behavior. If you ask your horse to “wait” until you completely open a stall door, and he knows how to do that, don’t be too strict and handle him hard, instead, be fair. Don’t expect a horse to do something he is not trained. Also, be consistent every time you ask the same tricks since horses are creatures of habit and they will likely remember.

Don’t just appear during feeding time or work time. Don’t show up when you’re about to feed your horse or immediately ride them when you want to. We may get busy sometimes but try to take time to visit them. Simple things like reading books beside them, scratching their necks or bellies, bringing treats or just simply hanging out is a relaxing way to bond.

Be sure to understand your horse’s body language. When you shape your own body language and understand your horse’s body language, it helps you to communicate better and create a closer bond. This has to be done consistently and other behaviors that you have taught would only be temporary if your horse does not know what to expect from you. Learn to understand your horse by observing its facial expression, tail, ears, and posture.

Grooming time can become bonding time. Allogrooming is a very common behavior in horses. Allogrooming is when two horses nibble each other’s back or scratching each other. This is why grooming your horse is a pleasurable way to bond. Especially when you brush their out-of-reach areas like the chest, legs, etc..

Respect that your horse is a horse. Your horse also needs the companionship of other horses, not just bonding with you alone. They don’t care about the things we do – color, breed, size or perfectly kept stalls. They want shelter from a storm, good grass, water and companionship, and leadership from someone they can rely on.

Massage and other therapeutic bodywork. When you learn the basics of equine massage or other massages can help you create a better bond with your horse. If he knows he can rely on your during relaxation, then he will surely enjoy spending time with you. Not only does massaging relaxes your horse, it can also improve his overall performance.

Last but not the least, always experience things together. The more you interact with your horse, the more you understand each other. You may have heard competitors claim their horse looked after them during a competition. Their bond with their horses developed and strengthen based on mutual trust in difficult situations.

How to Choose The Right Horse

Owning a horse can be quite expensive and comes with great responsibility, and all future horse owners should know what to pick. You may get carried away by those shiny hair and unique colors. However, the wrong horse can ruin your fun of horseback riding. Below are the three things you should consider before buying your first horse.

CONSIDER THE SIZE

There are a number of reasons why choosing a horse of the right size is important. It has a big impact on its physical capabilities and limitations, and size is also important in the show ring. For example; if you have two equal horse with riders that both made a perfect performance, and one is mounted on a horse of appropriate size while the other is a 6-foot man mounted on a 15 hand horse. The possibilities are the blue ribbon will be awarded to the first pair. Why? The overall picture of the team is more pleasing and fitting. If you want to buy a horse for showing, then size is definitely something to take into account.

SUITABILITY AND BREED

A horse’s conformation and breed both play into its suitability for different kind of jobs. Horses were bred a certain way through the centuries for reasons and it is important to research the breed you’re planning to buy. If you want to compete in endurance competitions, an Arabian horse would be a suitable choice as they’re known to be intelligent, loyal and spirited yet gentle. If you want a horse for ring shows and that can hop fences, a warmblood is a better option. Even within breeds, a horse’s structure comes into play. Some horses have higher-set neck while others have a more upright shoulder, all these things can affect how well they can perform specific tasks.

HORSE PERSONALITY

The personality of a horse may be the single, most important quality when you choose one. Horses are just like us; we don’t get along easily. And when you’re about to spend tons of money on a four hundred kilo animal, you have to make sure you get along well and not just the one that merely tolerates you.

Riding a gelding (male horse) is very different than riding a mare (female horse), but even with the gender, each horse has its unique feature. There are some horses that are lazy and needs to be pushed and some are so enthusiastic and needs to be calmed down and held back. There are also some people who want to learn how to ride both types, but when you’re going to buy one, it’s probably best to choose a horse that matches your style.

Personality also encompasses the indefinable quality of a heart. Some horses just don’t care and others care too much, try their best, and these horses are the ones who become champions. In fact, the heart is so powerful that it can make up for some less attractive qualities; in the Olympic 1984 Show Jumping, Gold Medal winner “Touch of Class” was a hot, small-sized Thoroughbred mare, all generally unattractive qualities in the world of show jumping, where much larger Warmblood horses are desired, but none of that mattered because she had a heart. Choosing the right horse is a big commitment and comes with a lot of hardships, but if you keep these 3 things in mind then you’ll have the most wonderful time of your life with your soon-to-be equine partner.