Owning a horse can be expensive and time-consuming. In spite of these challenges, I believe that owning one can do a lot for teenage girls and really help them throughout their adolescent years. Here are 10 reasons why I think so:
1. It promotes mental and emotional well being.
Teen depression has skyrocketed lately and working with horses might be just what the doctor ordered for your teen. The bond of love, closeness, and trust that she will develop with her horse can effectively boost her mental and emotional health.
2. She’ll stay out of trouble.
There’ll be no room for trouble or boredom when your daughter is busy training, riding, cleaning tack and stalls, grooming horses or doing any number of chores in a ranch or barn. Sure, it’s hard work, but it’s also fulfilling.
3. It teaches responsibility.
A horse, like any other pet, will depend on your daughter for grooming, exercise, training, feeding, etc. This dependence calls for a lot of responsibility on your daughter’s part and stepping up will make her a much better person.
4. It’ll teach her financial responsibility.
Horses cost a lot of money for food, boarding or vet bills, money for riding classes – you get the drift. Instead of shouldering all these costs, split some of the bills with your daughter. Hopefully, this will encourage her to get a job and teach her valuable lessons about financial independence.
5. It instills self-confidence.
Nothing can boost your daughter’s confidence as much as working with a large 1,000-pound animal. When riding or training, she will be in a partnership with her horse, where she’s expected to be the leader. What can be more empowering than that?
6. It will help her expand her social circle.
Your daughter is likely to meet fellow horse-loving people if her horse is boarded at a barn or ranch. Some of these will be girls her own age and they can bond and connect over their mutual devotion and passion for horses.
7. She will meet a variety of positive role models.
Following the point above, your daughter is also likely to meet older women at a barn. These women can be good role models, giving her much of the same advice, support and positive influence as you would.
8. She’ll stay physically active.
In this era of social media addiction, it seems that teens everywhere are glued to their various screens. Getting your daughter a horse will give her a fun way to burn calories and build muscle as she exercises, feeds or otherwise cares for the animal.
9. It encourages creative problem-solving.
Even with training, your daughter will still encounter situations that call for her to come up with solutions on the fly. Her horse might respond differently from one day to the next and she will have to work through such challenges to find a solution.
10. It will keep her humble.
If your teen likes saying she knows everything, working with horses will teach her how wrong she is – and that’s a good thing. There will always be something new to learn, with plenty of mistakes made along the way. The most important thing she will learn is to keep at it.