Thursday, September 23, 2010

English riding style

Below is an English riding saddle. Notice that there is no horn, nor anything you can really hang on to. The stirrups are sometimes taken off the saddle, but when left they are usually very long.
The English riding style. Below, a lady rides English. English riding is a very popular riding style. Racing, showing, jumping, sometimes pleasure, and many other things are used with an English saddle. The saddle is very small and weighs very little, and the stirrups can be taken off the saddle.

western style riding

Above is a person riding western style.
Above is a western saddle. As you can see, it has a broader seat than that of the English. It has a horn that you can tie a rope around if you like, and the saddle pad on a western saddle isn't attached like that of the English saddle.

Western style riding can be used for jumping, like English, but is better for trail riding, rodeo, rounding up animals such as cows, and pleasure riding.
You can show with western, just like you can with English. There are halter classes in western, and cow roping contests. There are also many others.
At Claudia's house, I ride western. I ride in a small black saddle on her gray fifteen year old Quarter horse gelding, Shiloh.
Sometimes I ride Rio, her bay gelding. And sometimes I ride Johnny Rebel, her paint gelding.

how to lead a horse

Leading a horse is very easy.
Walk in front of your horse. Pretend that there's a circle around you that's your personal space. If the horse steps into that circle, make him get out of your personal space. Do this by walking toward him, saying "back," and hitting the horse's knees with the lead rope.
You want the horse to go wherever you go. Walk in front of him. Let him follow on a loose lead.
Back him up again. Walk toward him and say "back," then shake the lead rope and hit his knees with it.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

horse habits: kicking

Horses have some bad habits. Although they are usually very gentle and sweet, some horses kick out of habit. This isn't usual. Older horses don't tend to kick as much as younger horses.

When a horse kicks, it's usually either because it feels threatened. If you approach a horse from behind it, laying a hand on it's rump, it may be startled. This will scare the horse, for it might not be able to see you. Although a horse's eyes are on the sides of it's head, a horse cannot see directly behind its tail. If you approach from behind its tail and lay a hand on its rump, the horse won't be able to see you. It may startle and jump a little, and a younger horse may kick.
If you're standing where you're standing about maybe three feet away from the horse's tail when it kicks, you could be seriously injured.
This is because the horse can kick out more and get you (usually it'll kick your leg), but if you're up next to the horse and you can brush against its tail, the horse can't kick as farther and hurt you more.
To stop a horse from kicking, take him into a round pen or paddock and free lunge him. First, get a whip and keep it low to the ground. As your horse circles at a walk, trot, or canter, lower your eyes to his rump.
The horse will stop and approach you. Never look the horse in the eye. Just wave your arms or yell and the horse will take off again. Keep doing this, and finally let the horse approach. This usually teaches the horse not to kick.
If possible, start from the earliest age you can. Start teaching a foal or young horse good manners. They will learn to do this, and when they're older, they won't have many bad manners.
Just my advice,

bad horse habbits: biting

Horses are beautiful, smart, and gentle animals. But they tend to have bad habits.

Biting is one habit that needs to be fixed immediately. If a horse is nippy, it may be because you feed it treats. Feeding it hand treats encourages the horse to nip at your hands to get the treat. If he does nip or try to bite you, you'll need to hit him on the nose and push his face away. This won't hurt him, it'll only tell him not to do this.
Horses can bite for different reasons. A playful, young horse might just try to nip you to be playful or to get your attention. An older horse that bites or nips might mean it's aggressive, or it might just be nipping because you have a treat.
If your horse continues to nip, despite you smacking him on the nose and pushing him away, you'll need to stop giving him hand treats. Or you can ask someone more experienced.
Just my advice,

bad horse habbits: biting