Archive for April, 2011

Buying a horse or pony

April 27th, 2011

3 horses
Have you found Mr Right?
Buying a horse or pony needs lots of considerations beforehand. You need to make sure you have enough practical experience, just reading a book is not enough.
If you have just started riding and not worked around the stables for any length of time, you need to take into consideration that keeping a horse is expensive, and also can be hard work.

You also need to take an informed decision about livery. There are several types of livery you can go for, but first you need to find a good yard. Make sure that it is affordable, clean, hygienic and that all the horses look fit, healthy, happy and well.
There should at least be an exercise arena, a stable block and lots of good grazing.

Full livery
The most expensive, but also the most inclusive option. It includes full care, feeding, grooming turning out, mucking out, so someone else does everything for your horse and you can just turn up to ride (although doing that defeats the object of horse ownership).

Part livery
This type of livery is not as expensive as full because only the horses basic needs are attended to.

The best option for experienced people, DIY is just as it says. You do it all yourself!

Grass livery
The least expensive, but also the least practical.
You rent a field and that’s that. You feed, groom, and do everything on this field, which is very impractical in winter or when the farrier or vet comes.

People with fat wallets who are still learning about horse care should go for the first or second option, while those that are experienced should go for the second or third option. The fourth option is not practical.

If you have enough practical horse care and riding knowledge, have money to keep the horse and have found a good livery yard you can start looking.
If you are a first time owner it is strongly advised that you go for an older, safe schoolmaster who will look after you. Magazines and recommended horse websites are a good place to start.
Buying from sales is not advised, especially for a first time owner because most of the horses that end up there are there for a reason (undesirable vice, bad back, weak tendons etc). Although nice horses can be found at sales,  it is better to be safe than sorry.
When you have found a suitable sounding horse, it is time to go and view and try it out. Go and look at the horse, groom it, ask about its medical history, ask if vaccinations are up to date, pick up its hooves, check hoof condition,  tack it up, ride it, jump it, do whatever you want the horse for with it.
If the price is reasonable, and the horse is responsive and does what you want, passes vet inspection, and you like it, it is time to consider buying. When you have acquired the right horse, allow at least five days to settle in before work begins. After rest period you can slowly start to introduce work.
Once you have been working gently for a few days you can start to use more advanced  supplying exercises on both reins such as serpentines and loops and later on you can start to work on impulsion and control with lateral work such as leg yielding, shoulder in, rein back etc (only attempt to do these exercises if you have been taught correctly under instruction.

We hope that you now understand the most important things about buying a horse and choosing livery and can now make an informed decision.

Good luck!

Happy searching!

Horses , ,

Badminton Horse Trials 2011

April 22nd, 2011

Mitsubishi’s badminton horse trials is one of the greatest three day events around. The competition took place from the 21st April 2011 till 25th April.
The first day (Thursday) is the grassroots event, on Friday and Saturday dressage will take place, Easter Sunday will be cross contry and the final will be on on Monday in the form of show jumping.
Badminton is not usually held on Easter weekend but this year organizers ensured that the event was not held at the same time as the American equivalent in Kentucky.


Marina Kohncke and Calma Schelly have succeeded in overtaking Laura Collet and pushing her to 2nd . Sam Griffiths is sitting in 3rd . Niklas Lindback is T 4th.Andrew Nicholson is currently in fifth and Fox-Pitt and Navigator have navigated their way off the top five.

Tomorrow the show jumping will decide all. Who will win the gruelling challenges of badminton, and go home £60,000 richer?
Last year, in 2010 Paul Tapner took the lead and after the show jumping it was established that he was the winner, with Inonnothing. This year, he’s back with kilfinnie II because last year he was on the Australian WEG team and Inonothing was injured during the cross country phase. He had a chipped patella, but is expected to recover fully.

This year, between 80 and 100 competitors are riding, but some horses will be withdrawn if they suffer an injury, or turn out stiff during the trot – up, and there will be some falls during the cross country so by the end of it the numbers will have dwindled.

These two days are dressage. The arena is 20 x 60 metres and riders must perform a seven and a half minute long test. The percentage is good marks and the penalty points are bad marks. Penalty points are awarded for movements that are not performed, or performed insufficiently. Each movement is given marks out of 10.
0. not performed
1. very bad
2. bad
3. fairly bad
4. insufficient
5. sufficient
6. satisfactory
7. fairly good
8. good
9. very good
10. excellent

The first dressage day is over, some riders still have a test to do, but the riders who went yesterday can only look at the leader board and wish that the were at the top. The delighted laura collet is now leading, on her horse Rayef. Tomorrow Laura collet will be uner extrsa pressure to keep the top spot. If she can thrive, and perform well under this pressure, the win of £60,000 could be hers.

23rd April 2011
Ruth Edge snatches the lead with Two Thyme, Piggy French slots in behind her and pushes the young woman who was so hopeful this morning into 3rd place.

Not all is lost, Collet can still win, if she can beat Edge, French and all other up and coming competitors during the cross country, and keep that lead during the show jumping.

Ruth Edge and her horse have a very good score of 33.3 penalties in their dressage test and are currently carrying the largest chance in the cross country tomorrow..
Pippa Funnel has withdrawn Redesigned and and Oliver Townend originally entered four horses, but only one, Ashdale Cruise Master, is still in the competition.


The three time badminton winner Pippa Funnel has withdrawn her second horse. She withdrew Mirage D’Elle because she had her doubts about running the less experienced horse after having to withdraw Redesigned due to him not being 100% sound.

About half an hour to go till the start of the cross country!!
13:09 Laura Collet and Rayef are back on top! Andrew Nicholson, who was the first to go has been pushed to 2nd place while William Fox-Pitt and Navigator have not succeeded in navigating to top spot, but are sitting in a fairly promising 3rd.


Ruth Edge and Two Thyme, who were in such a promising place at one point have been eliminated after the cross country.

Mark Todd has taken the lead leaving

Marina Kohncke in 2nd

Nicola Wilson is 3rd

Andrew Nicholson is now 4th and

Piggy French lies 5th


Results 2011

NZB Land Vision has carried Todd to success!!!

Mark Todd is the winner of Mitsubishi’s Badminton horse trials!!!

2nd Piggy french- Jakata

3rd Mary King  – Imperial Cavalier

4th Sam Griffiths -Happy Times

5th Niklas Lindback- Mister Pooh

6th Caroline Powell -Lenamore

7th Nicola Wilson  -Opposition Buzz

8th Laura Collett -Rayef

9th Marina Kohncke -Calma Schelly

10th Andrew Nicholson – Avebury

Country Sports , , ,

Have you lost some lambs in Herefordshire, Worcestershire or Glucestershire?

April 15th, 2011

Lost lambs in Herefordshire, Worcestershire or Gloucestershire?

The new from BBC below is quite interesting. The lambs thieves seem to have an interesting ways of tranporting what they stole:

Some of the animals were on the back seat of one of the cars while others were discovered packed into the boot.

Officers have now located the owner of the lambs which were found near Oldbury in the West Midlands in the early hours of Thursday.

Six men were arrested on suspicion of theft after the Vauxhall Cavalier and Rover cars were stopped.

Police said the lambs’ owner is from Toddington, Gloucestershire, and he will be reunited with his flock.

The police spokesman said officers found eight lambs in the boot of one of the vehicles with another three on the back seats.

In the second vehicle, four lambs were found in the boot and one in the foot-well.

“The lambs were found to be tightly bound and were obviously distressed,” he said.

Countryside Blog