We all want to spend time with our horses as much as possible. Sometimes however, we can't always ride. Maybe we don't have time, the horse can't be ridden, or we just want to try something new. Here are 5 ways to spend time with your horse without being on his back.
1) Driving. Teaching your horse to drive is lots of fun for both the horse and driver. This is a perfect option for mini and ponies that are too small to ride. Driving is also great for horses that have injuries that prevent them from being ridden. Don't worry if you don't have a cart. Long-lining or ground driving your horse can be just as rewarding. All you need is a surcingle, long reins, and a bridle.
2) Groundwork. Any horse can learn to do ground work. no matter how small, big, young, or old. Groundwork does not have to be boring lunging, around and around. Teach your horse something new or work on some rusty skills. Backing, side passing, yielding shoulders and hindquarters, and flexing the neck are all great ground work exercises. Make a little obstacle course with tarps and jumps. Teach your horse to lead and lunge over your obstacles. If your horse is a little jumpy, fit some despooking into your groundwork routine.
3) Go For A Walk. You may get a few weird looks, but horses like walks just as much as dogs! Snap on a halter and lead and hit the road. Walk your horse around a pasture, arena, or along a trail. You can even take your horse to a nice green patch for a grass snack. Walking your horse gives you both time together and a little exercise! This is also a great opportunity to work on your horse's leading skills.
4) Teach Some Tricks. Training your horse tricks is fun and rewarding. Working on things like bowing, the spanish walk, and nodding your head are all great ways to spend time with your horse. As you get more advanced with tricks you can even work on things like laying down, sitting up, and liberty training.
5) Just Be With Your Horse. A lot of times we over-complicate spending time with our horses. They are just happy to be with us. This could mean standing out in the pasture with them, grooming them, or taking time to just give them a good scratch.
What ways do you spend time with your horse? Leave your thoughts in the commets below.
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