"Now I say that with cruelty and oppression it is everybody's business to interfere when they see it."

~Anna Sewell

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Some people need to chill out.

Is there really any reason for some people to be so uptight about their horses? The stable is supposed to be a fun place. If you make it miserable, then what's the point of even being there? You're supposed to have fun with your horses, not get worked up over every little minor detail.

For instance, there was this stallion at my old barn who was kept in his stall 24-7-365. He wasn't even allowed to go out into a paddock by himself, even though the BO offered the owner a separate turnout area. The owner claimed that she didn't want to risk him getting nicked up or injured and he had special shoes on and she didn't want them to get ruined. She kept him blanketed and hooded even in 50 degree weather and put chains around his ankles. She also frequently tied him up so he couldn't reach his food or water. And she was adamant that no one was to go near him or pay any kind of attention to him, EVER. Never gave anyone a reason, but the horse was to be locked up and isolated at all times. The owner would absolutely go through the roof if she even suspected that anything near his stall had been touched. Although, oddly enough, the owner boasted all day long about his outstanding temperament and that he was so well-behaved that you wouldn't even know he was a stud. Which was true.

This stallion was one of the most polite and gentlemanly horses I've ever known. Whenever I was alone at the barn, I'd open his stall door and pet him and give him a few treats. He seemed grateful for the attention and never once did anything wrong. How he was so friendly despite the way he was treated, I will never know. You could tell that he was going loopy from being locked up. He would just stand in the corner and stare off into space like a zombie. He had no muscle tone and his tail was falling out, just from deteriorating in that stall. It was so sad.

And then you have people who flip their lid if someone pets their horse. I mean, is that really necessary? I understand if the horse is dangerous, but if that's the case, you should have a sign posted on his stall. I know that lots of non-horse people like to go to the stables and visit the horses. Is it going to kill your horse to have someone pat him on the neck? I think not. Count to ten and take a chill pill. Not everyone is fortunate enough to own a horse, so would it be so much trouble to let them visit with yours? Like I said, barns are supposed to be fun. Don't be such a poophead. Life is too short to be getting your panties in a bunch because someone gave your horse a carrot.

A lot of people at the Midwest Horse Fair are like that. It's a shame.

Be nice and post a note if your horse isn't safe. You don't need to go batshit every time a little kid walks up to your horse and pets him on the nose. It's okay. Horses don't often have allergic reactions to children and keel over, I promise.

And you don't need to call the vet every time your horse sneezes.

It's also okay for your horse to have shavings stuck in his mane and tail. Because you see, horses like to lay down in their stalls. They make these nifty little things called combs, and it takes all of five minutes to have your horse looking as good as new.

I promise that your horse won't die if he gets bitten by another horse. It's perfectly normal for them to nip each other once in a while, and it heals right up in a couple of weeks!

And lastly, horses are outdoor animals. They're a lot tougher than humans and they don't need to be rugged whenever it's less than 80 degrees outside. A little bit of rain never hurt a horse, either.


  1. I like this post and agree with you all the way. I don't understand why people treat their horses like priceless pieces of china, and so many do. One particular barn I worked at scrubbed their buckets every day with comet and hot water. I agree that horses should have fresh clean water out of a clean bucket, but that was over the top. I also know that some flora is good for a horses digestive system, so cleaning everything like that all the time can be detrimental. The horses also had to be wrapped each time they were in pasture and could never go out together...kind of sad. Another farm posted a big sign that forbade anyone to touch anyone elses horses....they were concerned about spreading germs...lol.