I think we can all agree that 2020 is nothing that we expected and times are crazy right now. This Pandemic has affected the whole world, including the horse community. There have been rodeo closures, show closures, cancelled events, our business is currently closed and it has even led to barns closing. It is a scary time and all of you are in our thoughts and prayers through this. I think it is important to be aware of what is going on, but it is also important to try and bring some joy into our lives when things around us are so dark. We are all going stir crazy in the house, especially with all our events getting canceled. So, here are 5 fun things you can do with your horse while you are stuck at home!
1. Go ride
The weather has been beautiful here in Colorado during this quarantine and I have spent pretty much every day riding my horses. Just because shows have been canceled, doesn't mean you can't keep your horse in shape for when they start back up! Go out and do some arena work! Our last blog was on drills and exercises to do with your horse and now is the perfect time to try them out! I have been doing a lot of those drills and I already notice a difference in my horse. We will sure be ready when the barrel races start back up! You can also go on a nice, relaxing trail ride. Keep social distancing in mind, but ride your horse down the road or down a trail. I have a ditch road that runs along my house and I've enjoyed exploring it with my horse! Even if you go climb on your horse bareback and just walk around your arena/pen, you will feel much better afterwards! You could even try something new like Liberty work or teach them how to ground tie.
2. Work your youngsters
This one may not apply to everyone, but I know a lot of us have younger horses that are at the age to start working them. I have a 2 year old gelding that I have had a hard time finding time for with busy, everyday life. Since being home, I have been able to work with him everyday. I have been lunging him, working on desensitizing, introducing him to a bareback pad, and even just brushing him. I also ponied him for the first time! It is the perfect time to get them used to you and doing adult horse stuff.
3. Give them a bath
Now is the perfect time to rinse off all the mud and yuck that they have accumulated through winter! You can wash their mane, their tails, or their whole body. Even though they will just roll right after, I feel like it is a great bonding experience and can be very therapeutic. My favorite wash to use is the Mane and Tail Shampoo and Conditioner. I then like to put Equus Rebuilder in their mane/tail to promote hair growth. Finally, I put in their fresh tail bags and boom! Clean ponies. You can work on your tan while doing this too lol. This can also be a good thing to introduce your younger horses to!
4. Grooming time
Spring time equals shedding time. Even the pandemic won't stop the endless horse hair. I think spending some time to brush your horse is so relaxing and they usually love the attention! Get that loose, winter hair off and brush through those tangled manes. A great product to use is the Mane and Tail Detangler. It makes their hair so soft and even cleans it! You can even spice it up and braid their mane and/or their tails! If you want to go a little wild, look up some braiding tutorials on youtube and you can have a lot of fun trying different things in their mane! Something else that I did was my 2 year old had rubbed his mane and it was insanely uneven. It looked awful, but I hadn't had time to do anything with it. So when I was brushing everyone, I trimmed it and made it even. I wouldn't recommend going scissor happy, but just something you can do if needed.
5. Just go hangout
I know I am happiest when I am around horses, so I just go hangout with them. You can do anything! You could do a mini photo shoot and show them off on your social media pages. You might as well since you did all of this grooming and bathing! I have done this and it does bring a lot of joy to just take pictures of them and have fun. Then you can flood your friend's/family's news feed with glamour shots of your babies, also guilty of doing this :). You can turn them out to play and just watch them. My horses go crazy when they get turned out and it always brings a smile to my face. You can work on stretches or maybe find their favorite itchy spot. You could even figure out what treat your horse loves the most! My all time favorite thing is to take a book and just go sit out there with them and read. They are amazing animals and just being in their presence is a blessing.
Just throwing this out there, but you can always shop for them online too! Then when your items arrive, you can spend more time with your horse showing them all the great stuff you bought them!
We are overwhelmed with all the support you guys are giving our business through this hectic time. Thank you for helping out your local tack shop! We hope you enjoy these fun ideas and you are all in our thoughts! Remember when life gives you lemons, make lemonade. In this case our lemonade is horses :). Stay safe and healthy!