Graceful, magnificent and beautiful, horses make truly wonderful pets for the right owners. From pretty ponies through to clip-clopping Clydesdales, horses can offer love, companionship and the freedom and joy of horse riding to their owners.
Getting a horse as a pet is an exciting and memorable time, but it’s also worth remembering that taking on the ownership of a horse is a big commitment. It’s up to you to give your pet the best possible care, ensuring that he has everything he needs to stay healthy and fulfilled.
So before you bring a pet horse into your family, check out our essential pet horse equipment guide below to make sure you have all the basics for your gorgeous pet.
What equipment do I need for my horse?
Ensuring that you have adequate shelter and space for your horse is half the battle. But once that’s sorted, there are a few key items you’ll need to help your new pet feel right at home.
Tack and equipment are right at the top of the list. The list of horse tack available is really quite an extensive one — saddles, stirrups, bridles, halters, reins and more —and the type of horse you buy will have a big bearing on exactly which items you need to purchase. Don’t forget about lead ropes either, as they will be some of the most-used items in your horse equipment kit.
Regular grooming is an important responsibility for every horse owner, so you’ll need to invest in some grooming supplies before taking ownership of your new pet. From hoof picks and body brushes to mane combs and curry combs, there are plenty of items you need to keep your horse looking great and feeling even better.
You’ll also need to get some food to help supplement the grass your horse eats. Age, overall health and activity levels can all have an influence on the type of horse feed you buy, so if you’re in any doubt about the best option, ask your vet for advice.
In those chilly winter months, a warm, waterproof rug is an essential purchase, especially for those horses who are getting on a bit in years. Investing in a few horse blankets will ensure that your pet always has some extra level of protection against the elements.
If you’re planning on riding your horse, remember that you’ll not only need equipment for your pet but for yourself as well. Good-quality riding boots, breeches and a helmet will all be on your shopping list, while body protectors can also offer extra peace of mind for inexperienced riders.
Last but not least, remember that owning a pet always means there’ll be some cleaning up to do. Buckets and pitchforks can certainly come in handy when you need to keep the stables clean.
Tips on owning a horse
- Get lessons. If this is your first horse, regular riding lessons are a must. A reputable trainer or instructor can teach you a whole lot about riding your animal, as well as plenty of great tips on caring for your pet horse.
- Expect the unexpected. Just as with any other pet, when you own a horse there always seem to be unexpected expenses that crop up – from unforeseen vet bills to that latest piece of riding equipment you just have to have. Putting a little money aside each month can help you cover those expenses when they arise.
- Big commitment. Before you buy a horse or pony, make sure you’re fully aware just how big a commitment it is to provide the care needed by one of these beautiful animals. The time and cost involved can come as a big surprise to many first-time owners, so make sure you know what you’re getting yourself into before you bring a new pet into your family.
- Find a vet. Find a local vet whom you can easily communicate with and that you trust. Vets can provide you with all manner of invaluable advice and resources about caring for your horse, so make sure to take their tips on board.
- While you can easily spend thousands of dollars stocking up on all the latest and greatest equipment for your horse, the most important thing you can give him is all the love and companionship he wants. After all, it really is the least we can do for these magnificent animals that bring so much joy into our world.