Selecting a Horse for Your Busy Life
Like our homes, children, and careers, our horses are a commitment. If you are juggling the various responsibilities of the typical amateur rider ensuring you and your horse are the right fit for each other is important, or you may run the risk of creating more work, expense, and potential heartache for yourself. I have a friend who decided to buy a young, unmade horse for budgetary reasons. She is a working mom of two able to ride on average 3 times a week. The horse needed a fair amount of training that she could not give due to lack of time and expertise. Unwilling to invest in the training for various reasons she would spend a lot of time struggling with a green horse and becoming progressively unhappy. Riding is about enjoyment so it is prudent to spend a couple of minutes to take stock in your lifestyle, your obligations, and your abilities before you venture into a new horse purchase. Your personal profile should help you select the right horse for temperament, training needs, and ambitions.
- How often will I be riding on a weekly basis?
- Can I afford or do I want professional training for my horse?
- What is my objective for this horse? Horse shows, trail riding, pleasure?
- What is my riding level and experience?
- What is my fitness level?
Your personal profile can help to guide your horse search. Honestly assessing your personal needs and abilities can help you determine if you are able enough to train and nuture a green horse on your own or if you need a “school master” whose job it will be to teach you and build your confidence. Your profile can point you in the direction of breed and age as well. A word of caution: never select a horse based on “looks” or somebody else’s idea of the perfect horse. Horse shopping can be exciting, sad, and often disappointing, but if you can remain objective and true to yourself the right match is out there.