Archive for the ‘Countryside Blog’ Category

Summer Tips for a Happier Horse

October 2nd, 2016

Happy Horse

In this article I will share some great tips to help you achieve a healthy, happy horse. Your horse’s happiness is very important, because if he is not happy, he will not wish to perform.

1. Watch his Weight

It is very important to prevent your horse from gaining excess weight, as it can cause joint and organ strain, as well as put him at a higher risk of laminitis.

2. Apply Sun cream

If your horse has a white face, he may be at risk of sunburn. Using a product specially designed for horses, or a children’s high factor sunscreen could prevent him from getting sunburnt.

3. Ride at a Cooler time of day

Riding in the early morning, or late evening makes the ride more pleasant for both of you, as it will be cooler and more comfortable.

4. Poo-pick on a daily basis

Poo picking every day ensures that less flies are attracted, and so your horse will be more comfortable.

5. Hydration

During the hotteswt months of summer, you need to ensure your horse remainshydrated. Adding salt to his feed will replace salts lost in sweat, and encourage him to drink more. Ensure his water is well-topped up, and soak his hay, as this increases the amount of water he takes in.

6. Wash after Exercise

Exercise in hot weather meansthat your horse is likely to be sweated up when you return to the yard. Washing him down will cool him off, as well as removing sweat, which lessens flies’attraction to him.

7. Moisturise his feet

The heat of summer can dry his hooves out, but this can be easily alleviated. Standing him in a puddle for a while every day, or using a hoof moisturiser such as NAF Hoof Moist helps avoid cracking and hoof strain.

8. Stay Safe

Even in the bright light of summer, it is important that you wear your hi-vis kit. Hi-vis is very important, because you can be seen up to 3 seconds earlier – and in a life and death situation, three seconds could save your life. Also, some insurance policies will not pay out if you do not wear hi-vis.

9. Keep tack cool

It is important to keep tack cool and out of sunlight, as the heat of the sun can dry and crack leather, which, of course, can wreck your saddle.

10. Fit a Grazing Muzzle

If you have a horse or pony who is very prone to obesity, fit a grazing muzzle instead of keeping him stabled all day, as this allows him to graze and roam with the other horses, while ensuring he does not get too fat.

11. Mask ’em off

Fit a fly mask on your horse on hot days. Fly masks are annoying to some horses, but flies are even more annoying! A mask will also help prevent eye infections, as flies picking away at your horse’s eyes can transmit serious infections.

I hope these tips have helped you, if you have anything to add, please comment below! Remember to think sensibly about your horses safety and happiness this summer, and you should have a great season!

Countryside Blog

Appleby horse Fair – A celebration of Gypsy Horses

June 10th, 2013

Gypsy Cob

Gypsy Cob

Appleby horse Fair is a traditional, annually held fair where Travellers from around the United Kingdom buy and sell horses, meet with friends and relations, and celebrate their lifestyles.

It is one of the oldest horse fairs in existence, as it has been around since the reign of James II who allowed a horse fair to be held near the river Eden by Royal charter.

It is held every year in early June. It is currently under way, with the 2013 dates being the 6th to 12th June. It also sees many thousands of visitors.

The tradition continues until this day. Many people welcome, and visit the fair, however many people also cast a negative light upon the fair, giving the whole setup, and the travellers who attend it a bad name.

Recently, twenty men were arrested on their way to Appleby Horse Fair, by police, who claimed that they had the intention of ‘causing grievous bodily harm’.

Some people living in the area shut themselves away, or even leave temporarily in order to escape the fair, others exploit it as a business opportunity. All in all, those who are not fans give the fair a bad name, and cast the fair in a negative light.

Appleby Fair

Appleby Fair

People have created a petition to ban the horse fair, as they have reported incidents of abuse, where people have supposedly whipped, kicked and manhandled terrified horses into the river.

Other people report great experiences from the fair, having viewed, or even been involved in, the transaction of a horse or two. Over all, the fair is a long standing Traveller tradition, which is often given bad press by judgemental outsiders.

Countryside Blog

Farriery – The craft of perfectly fitting shoes for your horse

October 8th, 2011

Farriers – Custom shoemakers for your horse

Shoeing a horse

Experts recommend that you shoe working horses, as it protects the hoof from general wear and tear, cracking and splitting. Some people prefer to save on the cost of shoeing, and have their horses bare foot, but this can only be done with strong healthy hooves and limits the amount of work that can be done on the road to a minimum.
Generally shoes are made of iron, it heats well and can be shaped at hot temperatures and also effectively takes on the wear and tear of heavy work. Alternatives include plastic, winged shoes that are glued on. These are lighter, but more expensive and not often seen.
You cannot just pop into TESCO or ASDA to buy horse shoes, a registered expert known as a farrier has to come and fit your horses shoes.
It is recommended that your farrier visits every four to six weeks to trim, and shoe your horse.
It is also important that your farrier is properly qualified, you can check his qualificatins, here are some to look out for; DipWCF or Diploma of the Worshipful Company of Farriers , FWCF or Fellowship of the Worshipful Company of Farriers. This is the highest quallification, and the mark of a profesional, AWCF or the Associateship of the Worshipful Company of Farriers .
First the farrier removes the dirt, and excess frog, and sole tissue, and clips the hoof wall. Once the hoof is the right shape and length, the iron shoes are heated and shaped and once they have cooled sufficiently they are fitted, and adjusted, then cooled and nailed on.
More details on hooves and hoof care can be obtained from your farrier, a knowledgeable person, or a good book.

Countryside Blog , , ,

6 ways to improve your chances of finding that country pumpkin

October 6th, 2011

<h1>Find that countryside pumpkin you are looking for with horse lovers dating</h1>

If you are not already a member of  horse lovers dating, you can register free by clicking here . If you are already a member, here are 6 ways to improve your chances of meeting that special person:


Advanced Search
Who’s Online
Video Profiles
Be as specific as you want – search for your perfect partner using up to 20 different preferences including age, location, height, appearance, lifestyle, background, hobbies… the list goes on and on… and on!!! See who’s logged in at the same time as you and send them an Instant Message* to get chatting in the quickest time possible. With no need to wait around for a reply, you could even end up with an instant date. Introduce yourself to other Members face-to-face by recording a short video clip about yourself*. It’s like having a profile and a photo all-in-one, and other Members will also be able to see that you’re 100% genuine.
Ice Breakers
Inbox Tools
And Much More…
Once you’ve found other Members who fit what you’re looking for, you can introduce yourself to them all in one go by sending your own personal Ice Breaker message to get the conversation started. Choose whether to see all your incoming contacts in one place, or list Messages, Winks, Favourites and Gifts separately. And don’t forget you can also filter out contacts from people you’re not interested in. There are lots more ways that Horse Lovers Dating can help you find who and what you’re looking for, such as Dating Diaries, Personality tests, Recommended Members and all sorts of e-mail notifications to let you know when you’ve caught someone’s attention.

Countryside Blog

KC Horse Riding and Rescue Centre Show

October 6th, 2011

The morning of the show dawned bright and clear as I loaded up my steeds and set off. In the trailer was a young pony, backed this spring, and an older, but no more experienced mare. We arrived, unloaded and made last minute preparatons. The show had ridden, driven and inhand classes, one to suit every person. Gradually the show ground filled up, and at ten o’ clock the classes comenced. I took my young pony into an inhand class, I thought he behaved very well, and, it was a condition and turnout class, but he was clean, and in good condition, but still came last. I like to believe that it was as the judge said, his mane was not up to standard. This can be explained by the fact that he has a chunk missing because he sticks his head through the fence to eat the alledgedly, tastier and lusher grass on the other side. I dont have a big problem

with that on its own, the problem lies in that half his mane goes as well! So, rather than a red or blue rossete, it was a pink fifth (last!) that I was looking at. Oh well, I thought he was the best to me, the judge had said he had some way to go, but would win lots of thngs in future. I hoped so.
All the other competitors were clean, welll turned out, and successful. My next class was a last minute entry ( five minutes before!) and it was open showing, which I really only entered to fill the places. We came third (last!) and, the judge seemed quite impressed with the sturdy black gypsy cob except it was a showing class, I forgot my hairnet (almost said haynet!!) and my hat cover was the wrong colour and my horse refused to stand still. Other than that, the judge adored us (haha!!!!!)
Then I had lunch, went to the cones course and watched the competitors. There were only three, but all did very well. Then came ridden veteran,then riding championships ( i wasnt in it, l hadnt achieved a high enough placing) Then came my last class, handy pony. My handy pony (?!!) is a horse, she was not very handy, and we only achieved second (to last!) because the last competitor did almost everything wrong. We moved the coat from peg to peg fine. I dropped the duck and I couldnt steer because i forgot my gloves, the reins were greasy and i was holding a whip, at the same time as trying (and failing) to steer and holding a fishing net. I suceeded in picking up the duck without dismounting, but the steward had to come and help me steer!!! i moved flag from container to container fine, just about got over the jump (only just!!!) and then through the bending poles. Then into a square of poles. My mare stood still for five seconds, then pranced about on the spot for the next five!!! we saluted the judge and trotted out of the ring. I struggled to hold the fiery girl while the judges analysed the results, and then I found out i came second (to last!!)
Perhaps not so much on my part, but alltogether the day was a huge success, and the cake stall alone raised £160.00 pounds!!!
The show is held annually, in july, in hereford, near leominster by KC and the hereford and district driving group (hddg). For more details, see their website;

Countryside Blog