Valentine’s Day is just a week away. When it comes to gifts, I tend to prefer practical over romantic, and something for my horse habit is always appreciated. Here are eight Valentine’s Day gift ideas for the equestrian in your life.
Create a Minimalist Tack Room
I am a tack hoarder.
The problem started in college when I had to ride several horses in different disciplines. I needed different bits, different sized sport boots, different bridles. My little tack trunk was soon overflowing, but I justified each purchase because I actually used the items.
After college, my horseback riding habits changed. I primarily ride my own two mares, but my tack box is still overflowing. As part of my 2019 downsizing plan, I am becoming a tack minimalist. Here’s what is staying in my tack room and what is finding a new home.
21 Gift Ideas For Horse-Crazy Kids
Ever since I rode my first pony, a horse was at the top of my holiday wish list, and every year my parents shot down my idea. Now I am a mother to a horse-crazy kid, and even though I would happily buy her a horse every year for her birthday AND Christmas, my husband is not quite on board with that idea. So, instead, I find horse-themed gifts for her, and she loves them almost as much as a real horse.
For the horse-crazy kid in your life, here are 21 gift ideas to fuel their passion for all-things equestrian.
The Real Cost of Owning a Horse
When I was five years old, my great-grandmother took a trip to Arizona and sent me a postcard. On the front was a Navajo girl with her horse and dog, and my great-grandmother wrote to me that kids here are very poor and may only have a horse and dog and few other material things. She said this was very sad, but I looked at that postcard and thought that the girl on the front was very lucky because she had a horse AND a dog, and I wanted a horse more than anything.
My parents always gave me the line that I could not have a horse because we could not afford one, but I really think I they did not let me have one because they were not horse people. They never denied me ways to fill my love of horses, and I had regular opportunities to ride and fuel my passion. I was one of those kids who traded chores in exchange for riding lessons, so I learned early on how much care a horse requires. What I did not learn until I bought my first horse in 2003 is how much a horse actually costs.
This is what I spend on my horses each year and the costs you should budget for before you buy your first horse.
Fall is the beginning of horse blanket season, but which blanket is right for your horse? Does he need a stable blanket? A turnout? A sheet? What is denier, and what is fill level? The options can be overwhelming. The right blanket for your horse fits his body type, lifestyle, and climate. These are the points to consider when finding the right blanket for your horse.
Once you find the perfect blanket, be sure to care for it properly. Find all the steps in Wash and Waterproof Your Horse Blankets the Right Way.
Fall is tough season for horse blankets. In some parts of the country, the weather varies from rain to snow, and this creates mud. So. Much. Mud. You turn your perfectly clean, blanketed horse out in the morning and he comes back in the afternoon looking like the Swamp Thing.
I owned a horse blanket repair business for almost four years, and I met many equestrians who were terrified of washing their horse blankets, no matter how dirty they got. The myth is that washing the blanket will ruin the waterproofing, but I promise, after washing thousands of horse blankets, this is not true. Mud, urine, manure, and exposure to a heat-cold cycle will break down your waterproofing faster than properly washing your blanket.
Follow these easy steps to properly wash your horse blanket and re-waterproof it if needed.
I love a bargain, so Amazon Prime Day is one of my favorite days of the year. This year the big event starts on Monday, July 16 at noon Pacific/ 3 PM Eastern, and continues until 8:59 PM Pacific/ 11:59 PM Eastern on Tuesday, July 17.
Does my horse need a fly sheet? If so, which is the best one?
To do a job right you need the right tools, and that includes the tools for lunging your horse. I tend to hold onto my horse equipment forever, so I have found that spending a little more money up front to purchase quality items costs me less in the long run.
Welcome! I've been a freelance writer since 2002 and have numerous horse-related articles published in print and online publications. I have a Bachelor of Science degree from Rocky Mountain College with a major in Equestrian Studies and a minor in Business Management. My current business ventures include High Plains Arena and real estate investing.