Day 8 – Paws and be Thankful.

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Today I’m going to go off topic. This is a post that I would be writing today even if it was not part of the Blogtober Challenge, and it’s got absolutely nothing to do with horses whatsoever. Today is my beloved retired Guide Dog, Ripley’s 13th birthday. A day which, back in April, when he was extremely ill and refused to eat for nearly a week, and all the examinations and tests known to vet could not work out what was wrong with him, I was convinced he would not see. This week also happens to be Guide Dogs Week here in the UK. So I thought it was an opportune moment to use this blog to spread the word about what a fantastic organisation Guide Dogs is.

Incredibly it’s 87 years since the first

Four in Trepid Pathfinders, ventured out on the streets of Britain with their guide dogs by their side. The idea of guiding blind people with dogs was not universally accepted bag then. In fact quite The opposite. It was considered pure lunacy, The term crackpot was used to describe both the idea and those who were advocating it. Many people considered it to be cruel both to man and dog. . I’m immeasurably greatful to those pioneers who believed in the idea, and fought to get it off the ground. Ripley was my 3rd Guide Dog, and, while it’s fair to say he wasn’t the most dedicated Guide, we had some adventures together before he took early retirement age 6.

he saw me through a career change, that took me from being a police civilian to holistic complimentary therapist. He was by mine and Hal’s side while Hal’s Health hit rock bottom. He sat through countless lectures and tutorials, both at college and university, and travelled hundreds of miles with me on my journeys to and from Hereford from Plymouth. When I graduated he graduated to. At our graduation ceremony Mary King was given an honorary doctorate by the University, and when I was receiving my degree, according to my slightly star struck husband, had a sly stroke. Everybody who has a copy of the graduates video for that ceremony will see a large black guide dog leading the students parade. He got me home in a blizzard once, after my taxi driver lost control of the car on ice at the top of our lane. .

My first guide dog, Odine, came down the aisle with me when I got married. Guide Dog Number two, Annie, saw me through a career change from being a civil servant to being a police civilian. Annie and I were presented to her Majesty the Queen once, on the behalf of guide dogs, and Annie, bless her, jumped up at her Majesty and left wet Pawprint on her coat. When Annie retired, aged 10 and half, my colleagues love to so much that they arranged a retirement party for her at work, and presented her with a certificate signed by the chief constable. My current guide dog, Number four, Quincey, has already been by my side through the lifestyle change which brought us to this village, and living with the horses in the back garden so to speak. He’s been there with me well I’ve gone through being a participant in a clinical research trial, and looked after me well I’ve been recuperating from a lot of eye surgery.

These are the extraordinary examples of what having a guide dog can help somebody achieve. The reality though is much more fundamental. Without odine, Annie, Ripley, or Quincey, my life would have been completely different. Doing the most basic things in life, like the shopping, going to the postbox, going to work, would have become much more difficult as my eyesight deteriorated,. Yes I am capable of, and apparently very good at, using a long cane, but using a long cane is so difficult, stressful, and at times even painful. Without my dogs I doubt I would have achieved anywhere near things that I have with my life.

many people living with sight loss rely in a guy dog to help them Live their lives to the full. Those things that the majority of people take for granted. Going to the pub, taking the kids to school, going to work.. .. if you can think it, chances are there’s a Guide Dog Ownersomewhere doing with the help of their faithful hound.

All of this can only happen because of the kindness and generosity of people who make donations to a fundraiser for guide dogs

So if you have ever put your change in a guide dog collecting box in the shop, bought merchandise from all taken part in the tombola at a guide dogs stand at a large show, If you sponsor A puppy, or take part in the guide dog lottery, or if you have ever sponsored anybody taking part in a guy dog fund raising event. thank you from the bottom of my heart..

Day 7 – 10 things I love about Autumn(?)

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Hmmm, today’s Blogtober Challenge is to list 10 things that I love about Autumn. The thing is though, and you better sit down here, I’m not sure that in the grand scheme of things, I am particularly fond of Autumn.partly it’s because, as regular readers will know, I am frightened of strong wind, and Autumn is usually when the storms increase. Partly it’s because hunting and shooting, and the arrogance and rudeness of people on both sides of the argument upset me.. mostly though, it’s because of living with Retinitis Pigmentosa. One of the earliest symptoms of RP, and one which I personally had since birth, is night blindness. So for people in early stages of the disease, who can see pretty well thank you very much, during daylight, or good indoor lighting. But are rendered blind from twilight onwards, the Autumnal Equinox means less hours of useful eyesight, and less independence. Nowadays I am well beyond the point where it makes any real difference to me. However, I well remember how frazzled I used to get when it did. I know several people living with RP who suffer from crippling depression and anxiety at this time of year.

I do like to try to look on the bright side though. So here are 10 things I do like about this time of year.

1. Cooler weather. Being an overweight, fair skinned, freckle Celt, I am not built for heat and humidity. In fact it can make me feel quite poorly. So when the temperature drops below 20 I am much more comfortable.

2. Frosty mornings. A rarity in these parts. That crisp, clean, clear air that makes you feel really alive, and makes it feel as if the whole world is sparkling. What’s not to like?

3. Less flies. Daddy Longlegs (shudder) not withstanding, there are noticeably less flying, buzzing, biting, stinging, irritating pests around.

4. Silence. I refer you to my earlier post, the Sound of Silence.

5. Fallen leaves. OK, I know all about the dangers of sycamores , but you really have to be made of granite if the inner child in you doesn’t enjoy kicking through freshly fallen leaves.

6. The smell of somebodyelses wood smoke. We don’t have an open fire or a wood burner ourselves but plenty of folk around here do. , and I love the smell of woodsmoke, especially when it’s cold outside.

7. Being Able to take the dogs to the beach. Woo hoo! The holiday season is over, and so on the punitive restrictions placed on dogs being allowed to go on to Devon and Cornwall speeches. I mean it’s not as if there are any families who have both children and dogs is it? I’m going to stop now in case I go into full frontal rant mode. Hopefully though, if we do manage to get our own trailer, riding on the beach might be a realistic possibility next year.

8. Quieter roads. Both as a pedestrian who lives innan area with few pavements, and as a rider who lives in an area with zero off road riding, I really appreciate it when the tourists have gone home and the roads are a tiny bit quieter.

9. The West Country Christmas Equine Fair at Westpoint Arena. OK, as it takes place in December it’s really a Winter thing, but it’s my 1 guaranteed horsey day out each year, and I really look forward to it.

10. Strictly Come Dancing. I love it! From September to Christmas it’s like having a big glittery panto party in your living room every weekend.

Day 6 – ..And Suddenly itโ€™s Autumn

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Yesterday was gorgeous. Blue sky, gentle breeze, and really very warm. Poor Florence was already in a muck sweat tby the afternoon when we caught her and Breeze in for some TLC. . The midges were out in force and biting for all their worth..

Today, somebody somewhere has finally got the memo about it being October. The temperature has suddenly and dramatically dropped, the wind is blowing, and, oh my word, that rain is cold!

Sometimes I think that sudden changes in weather conditions like this can really upset a horse. Professionally I am a holistic complementary therapist, and I’m used to looking at a person’s wellbeing as a whole, body, mind, and spirit. It is impossible for one to be affected by something without there being a knock on affect on the other two. We call this the triad of health. To be truly well all three elements need to be in balance. Easier said than done. I try to treat my horses in the same way. I’ve noticed that, when the weather gets cooler there is a tendency for horses to become a little bit more sharp and spooky. Even my laid-back cobs can be affected by this. So maybe that’s why, when one of my neighbours started up his pressure washer this afternoon, something happened so regularly that I would’ve thought neither of the horses will take any notice now, Breeze shot off down the field like she was trying to win the Derby. Paul Florence thought the breeze was going to have a go at her, Lept into the air and shot off in the other direction. I have to admit this came as a little bit of a shock to me, I was only a couple of foot away from them at the time, albeit on the other side of the fence. Still it’s nice to know that this pair of elderly porkers have still got it in them

Day 5 – Autumn Essentials

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So far this year my hay is untouched, I have far too much grass and to scarily fat horses, and whilst I can’t claim to be entirely free of mud, it really isn’t worth writing home about. Yes, The nights are drawing in, and they are noticeably cooler, but, even though they have now been clipped, The girls are still perfectly comfortable without a rug.

Is it really October? It’s really difficult to think about the autumn essentials when the weather is so mixed up that The local farmers are in the process of bailing silage.In the last five days the land next door to us has had grass cut, turned, and bailed, with the bales being removed yesterday evening. I don’t think I’ve ever experienced such a late cut of silage. It must be a real relief, as after the first cut, which happened oh so very long ago, The grass just didn’t grow again until September.

Usually by this Time of year I am wondering if it is safe to start using the hay that Steve cut back in June or July. Whilst I always try to bring horses in as late as possible, and never until after the 5th of November, normally by now my resolve is beginning to crumble. Usually I am already beginning to run out of grass, monsoon season is in full swing, and the mud is beginning to make itself known.

So, apart from a good pair of wellies and some decent waterproofs, which are primed and ready to be worn in an instant, I think the mot essential thing to have at this time of year is am open mind.

Day 4 – Haygain

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Our expensive new toy arrived yesterday. . I’ve been kicking the idea around for a while now, but finally we’ve done it. We’ve bought a Haygain hay steamer. We’re both childishly excited about it, and can’t wait to steam our first bale.

Florence has always had trouble with her breathing. Dry hay is an absolute no no, even dryer Haylage can set her off wheezing. She does a really good Darth Vader impression . Up until this year I would’ve said that Breeze didn’t have a problem. However, back in January she developed a really nasty cough. Steroids, antibiotics, anti-inflammatories, Ventapulmin, several vet visits, soaked hey, and it didn’t really go away until she was turned out full time.

I hate soaking hay, it’s a real faff. This year, the unusually cold weather we had in March made hay soaking a massive problem as the hay nets froze in the soaking bin. . Good quality, moist Haylage is at a premium in these parts, unless you are buying proprietary brands, and they are rediculously expensive!

So enter the Haygain. Hopefully both horses will breathe easier this Winter.

Day 3 – The Sound of Silence,

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I’ve blogged before about my morning routine, and how special and important this , all too brief, private time is to me. .. in fact, I was going to write about something else today, but it can wait, this morning was just gorgeous.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not totally antisocial, but it is fair to say that I do naturally tend towards the solitary. I enjoy good company, a good laugh, and a good gossip, as much as the next person. I like to belong, and be part of the community. However, I am quite misphonic, hate loud shouty voices, find crowds disorientating and claustrophobic, and I’m very comfortable in my own company. . Part of this is of course a nature thing, I am a solitary creature, always have been always Wilby. However, I am willing to bet that, in part at least, it is a reaction to having to rely on other people so much. I think that, to a greater or lesser degree, depending on the individual circumstance, everybody who lives with some form of disability, has at some point, got to hand over their freedom, safety, privacy, and dignity, to somebody else. If we want to be fully functioning members of society we don’t have much choice. Which is why mornings like this morning are so special.

As I stepped out of the back door I was struck by how still everything was. It was about 6.30, so still dark, and, unusually, there wasn’t a breath of wind. Neither was it raining. The whole world was very still, and oh so silent. This is what is meant by tranquillity. This is the kind of inherent natural calmness that enables the inner peace usually sought through meditation. I could very easily be the only living Being on the planet. Lovely. The effect was spoiled somewhat a few minutes later, when our next door neighbours central heating boiler fired up. , but this didn’t

Last very long as it was so mild, and all was soon quiet again. Across the garden, down the drive, across the yard, on with the water, back across the yard, to the paddock, off with the electric, fill the troughs. All the time with me being the only source of noise. No light, because it makes little difference to me whether they’re on or off.

, just Mother Nature and I taking a moment to breathe. Then I heard it. Purposeful hoof beats marching up the field. The sort of walk that, if you could achieve it on a long rein between K and M, would gain 10’s every time. . A slight wheeze and a friendly wicker. Florence is on her way. Then a slower walk, and some clicking joints, Breeze, who quite frankly, isn’t a morning person, has woken up, and is on a course to intercept Flo, and get to me first. Both horses are walking in their normal rhythm, both keen to interact with me, ears pricked, full of cheek. Nothing to worry about here just me and 2 content cobs in the whole wide world.

As I drag myself away from the horses the rest of the world begins to wake up. Walking across the yard I here a Robin’s alarm call somewhere in the adjoining field. While I’m turning off the water a Thrush starts singing in the neighbour’s garden, and a Blackbird joins in from somewhere near the lake.

. As I walk back to the gate a Cockerel crows on the other side of the valley and a cow moos once. Reaching the gate the Dawn Chorus is full on, and as I linger there I hear one of the horses enjoying a really good roll.

Sadly, as I walk back across the garden, the spell is broken when a car drives down into the village. . I am back in the real world, and have a real World things to get on with.

Day 2 – electric Fencing and Bale Twine

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I wonder who first cane up with the concept of electric fence tape. You know, that sometimes white, sometimes green, tough, nylon , ribbon, with wires running through it, that can be found all across the land, wherever horses are. Whoever it was, I’d like to shake their hand. This simple solution to a fencing need is an absolute godsend to us blind horse owners, as I expect it is to sighted owners who spend a lot of time servicing their horses needs when it’s pitch dark out there. You see, apart from the fact that it keeps my horses in the small patch of land where I want/need them to be, it makes the best, and most flexible guide rails! In fact, it’s adaptable, flexible, durable nature makes it perfect for the job. With the right amount of tape, and the correct placement of the plastic stakes that usually complete the electric fence package, , you can put a guide rail across the most undulating of terrains, and around the most circuitous of routes. Whilst it can be a bit of a faff to put up, it’s impermanence means it can fairly easily be taken down, moved, or reconfigured, when needed. I love it!

For the last year or so the way our paddocks are laid out, 2 in the bottom field and 4 in the top field, hasn’t really changed, so I, kind of, know my way around. I still use guide rails though. After all, I wasn’t actually put on this Earth to be a human volt metre. My guide rails take me to the energiser. Finding the fence by walking into it and then following it until I find the energiser, is just too painful!

This system works extremely well. Unfortunately though, are Energizer got badly damaged, when the guy we get our hay from accidentally ran over it while turning his trailer and truck around. . Hal has mended it, because obviously buying a new one would be far too difficult, but it has started giving me the occasional electric shock when I am groping around trying to find the on off knob. Hal’s simple, low tech, and extremely effective solution to this new problem is… bale Twine!

Now, anybody who has spent any time on the farm will know that, without bale twine, The entire agricultural

Economy of Great Britain would collapse. I’ve never yet been on a farm where bale Twine hasn’t been used to hold gates or doors open or closed, men’s or replace broken straps, tie up animals, .. the list goes on. Yes, it does, itself, break, and yes, it will eventually rot, but it’s durable, and there’s usually a ready supply.

So, Hal’s simple solution? Tie a length of twine to the guide rail, and then tie the other end to the small plastic D-ring that is on top of the energiser, in the corner that the on/off knob is at the bottom of. It works a treat! All I have to do is run my hand along the guide rail TIL I hit a knot , then follow the twine TIL I reach the energier, trace down the corner, and there’s the knob. It couldn’t work better. No more electric shocks for me.

blogtober Challenge – Day 1

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I’ll never be able to keep it up, but I’ve decided to have a stab at the Blogtober Challenge. This is where you are challenged to write a blog post on every day during October. The trouble is, whilst I may have the best intentions in the world, I am quite lazy, and far too easily distracted, so this is going to be a challenge in more than one way. However, any excuse to talk about my girls, and spread the message, that blindness and horses are not mutually exclusive, has got to be excepted. After all, as they say round here, rude not to ๐Ÿ˜‰.

I’ll try to mix it up a bit. I’ll even ask Hal to post some photos, and maybe even videos, although I don’t even know if that’s possible.

I’d love to get some feed vack, and maybe get some more followers.

WinterReady

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ow can it be the end of September already?especially when we are still being blessed with such gorgeous weather. This time last year Mark had just finished the school, and the drains around it were running like fast flowing streams. We still had four horses back then, and we were already supplementing hay in the field, as our land was just a barren boggy wasteland. It was so wet that we couldn’t get a tractor on it to cut the hedges.

Compare then to now. Well, at the end of August, the unusually hot, dry Summer had left us with a bit of a dust bowl! The ground was rock hard, and, like last ear , we hardly had a blade of grass to our name. Since then, a smattering of rain, nixed in with lovely warm, sunny days, and cooler, dewy, nights, and, Hey Presto!, a textbook September flush. Now we only have the two horses, both of whom are extremely good doers, I am having to be very careful. That said, I’d far rather be facing Winter with too much grass than none at all.

We have a barn full of hay, a few bales of good quality haylage left over from earlier in the year, and more hay up at Steve’s. leonie’s stable is full of bedding. The hedges were cut on Thursday, and the bigger trees are being trimmed this week. The horses have been clipped. Rugs washed and ready. At the moment, our land is lush, green and dry under foot. I think we are as ready for Winter as we can be.

Let’s just hope it isn’t the four solid months of snow that the local News people keep going on about.

Mouthing the Bit 1 – Too Many Horses

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Every now and then I get the bit between my teeth and go off on one about something that is going on in the horse world. Usually this involves me writing a long and rambling blog post, and then scrapping it because it’s got nothing to do with what we’ve been up to with our own horses. However, after writing the “The Invisible Equestrian” posts, and seeing how well received they were, I have had a change of heart. Therefore this post is the first in a series which I have decided to call “Mouthing the Bit”. Like “The Imvisible Equestrian” they will be sporadic in nature. They will be written entirely from my own point of you, and please bear in mind I am not an expert in any field and hold no equestrian qualifications whatsoever, i’m just an enthusiastic Amata who loves horses. I will not be deliberately setting out to offend anybody in any of these blogs, but I do hold some strong opinions, and I hope they will be thought provoking and encourage debate. After all, I can’t be the only person who has an opinion on these subjects, can I?

September has been a strange month. In many ways a lot has been achieved, but I’ve hardly sat on a horse all month. As a result I haven’t achieved anything with the horses. , and it’s scarey how much weight they have gained, especially Florence. At the end of August we barely had a blade of grass to our name, and Florence had very evident ribs and waistline. Now, are 4 acres of scorched earth have miraculously morphed into 4 acres of verdant Savannah. Worryingly it appears that Florence has morphed into a poster girl for the laminitis trust.when I went to ride her on Saturday her new memory foam girth wouldn’t go round her!

Obviously I know and understand that Florence’s weight is a problem at the moment. She is an older horse with PPID, and therefore, without being obese, is already at risk of laminitis. I love my horses and their health and well-being are important to me. Therefore I am already taking measures to try to help Florence shed some timber. However sometimes I find myself wondering about other peoples attitudes towards horses. Well to be perfectly honest with you, peoples attitude towards all animals, but especially horses. Britain allegedly has a reputation of being a nation of animal lovers. Honestly though, i’m not so sure that we are.

On Saturday Hal and I went to an open day at the Mare and Foal Sanctuary. This Devon-based horse welfare charity has several farms throughout the county, One of which is only a few miles up the road from us. However it is only their official visitor centre that is normally open to the public. On Saturday though, The farm near us through open its doors. Well, Hal and I couldn’t resist. I could go on for hours about how impressed I was with the place, what amazing work they do, and how gorgeous all the resident ponies were. It was tough, but we did manage to come away without applying to rehome one of the residents. However, I for one came away feeling really thoughtful about the whole horse situation in the UK at the moment. Whilst it is obvious that there is no quick fix solution, and this is a very complex subject indeed, it did make me wonder about some very in trenched attitudes in the horse world as a whole, and how much this may be contributing to the horse crisis.

On Saturday there was an entire barn full of ponies who the sanctuary were trying to rehome. On each stable door there was a biography of the individual pony, and I noticed that there was a small group of ponies who were all said to be part bread Fell Ponies. I’m a little bit of a fan of the Fell Pony, having had the loan of one when I was younger. Sadly though these amazing sturdy little creatures are now considered a rare and endangered breed. . My interest piqued, I asked a member of staff how they knew these ponies were all part bred Fells. After all, not many of them were particularly Fell looking, One of them was actually chestnut. The lady told me that they didn’t really know for sure, but that they had all come into the sanctuary through the same rescue case, and that there had been some Fell stallions involved, so it was an educated guess. She then went on to tell me that these were only a handful of the 140 live horses and ponies that had been found on one site, in a joint operation with several other rescue charities. She also told me that the individual who owned them have now been banned from owning any animal for life.

140! Live! So that means that there were actually far more horses on this site, and when the authorities became involved there were already dead animals there! I’m sorry but how does it get to the state where one person has in excess of 140 horses? How does it get to the state where horses are dead on site before the authorities become involved? Who is really to blame here?

Did this individual deliberately set out to have so many animals, or did things just get terribly out of hand? Did he breed all these horses himself, or were some of them bought in? Did this all start because this individual had a mayor that didn’t have a job, so he thought it might be nice to breed a foal from her? Or was it a cynical and deliberate attempt to make money by breeding horses cheap and selling them to the unsuspecting? Somebody, somewhere, knew there was a problem along time before it got to this proportion. It is very unusual for horses to be completely invisible to anybody except their owner. Even if you know nothing about horses, and have no direct contact with them, there are certain clues to their existence that cannot easily be overlooked. Noise, smell, flies, done, are all things that get noticed quite quickly by even the most non-horsey individuals.

. Let’s face it, even the smallest of ponies is difficult to overlook. How do over 140 go unnoticed?

It starts with you and me, and our sense of responsibility towards others, both animal and human. What do we do if we think there is a problem? Do we ask questions? Do we discuss our concerns with someone who might be in a position to go and check things out? Do we ask how people get away with it, and how it’s allowed to happen, ask why nothing ever gets done about it, but do nothing ourselves? Do we turn a blind eye, it’s not up to us to tell other people how to live, we’re not the responsible or guilty ones here, are we?

Unfortunately, while DEFRA and Trading Standards, do sometimes become involved in equine welfare cases, there is no statutory animal welfare authority in this country. Regardless of what you think of them, the RSPCA, BHS, World Horse Welfare, are, like countless other organisations, including the Mare and Foal Sanctuary, only charities, Limited in what they can achieve by the funds they receive from members of public, and with no legal jurisdiction to enter properties and sees suffering animals. .

It also starts with the horses we own. , and the choices that we make in respect of them.

Equine welfare charities often refer to “Imbisable Horses”. By this they mean those animals that nobody has any idea exist. Never see a Vet or Farrier, moved from place to place, repeatedly bought and sold, unpassported, often fly grazed or abandoned. So where do these Invisible Horses come from?

It starts with a mare. At the moment, early Autumn, my equestrian media is full of ads for foals for sale. They all stress how well bred the foal is, they all talk about the foals presence and way of going, and how easy to handle it is.

. However, with very few exceptions, they all say something along the lines of, “lack of time forces sale…”. . Now,,

, I do understand that, people make plans that sometimes get sidelined by life. Jobs get lost, relationships breakdown, people get ill, etc, but not all the time. How many people put a mare in foal when she can no longer do the job she was originally bred or bought to do? There seems to be an attitude that, if you have a mare, and for what ever reason she can no longer be ridden, even if this is just a temporary situation, The obvious thing to do is put her in foal. Why? For what purpose is this foal being bred, and to whose benefit?

if a mare is older, unsound, or injured, is it really fair to make her go through an eleven month pregnancy? What will happen to the foal once it is born? Do you have it’s future career all mapped out in your mind? Are you going to make a killing when you sell it to one of the myriad of people who have been beating a path to your door on the hope of being the one who buys it at weaning? Well all things are possible, but I suspect that, in the majority of cases, beyond choosing the stallion, and some vague idea about it being whatever the fashionable type or colour is just now, the actual living breathing, flesh and blood foal, and it”s Life after it has been sold, has hardly entered the thoughts of its breeder.

We see a similar phenomena on with older and unsound Horses, especially geldings. I get quite upset when I see adverts for horses in their late teens or early 20s, Who have obviously worked hard, competing and hunting, but due to their age are slowing down, stiffening up, and need a bit more looking after. Very often the advert say something along the lines of “too good to be a field ornament”. Really! So why aren’t you keeping it then?

The cynic in me is inclined to think that, what people actually mean when they use this phrase is, “this object is no longer useful to me, why should I bother to invest in looking after it anymore”. OK, I know that not everybody has the financial ability or facilities to keep more than one horse. I have been that person struggling to keep one horse on livery. It’s hard! I truly believe that the bast number of us genuinely love our orses, and are determined to do our best for our beloved friends. However, i’d be willing to bet that the majority of these unwanted potential field ornaments come from semi professional, multi horse situations.

So where is the love? It seems to me that at least some of the horse crisis in the UK is caused by the view that a horse is only valuable when it is being ridden. Horse as tool, or commodity, to be profited from, sold on, or treated as a foal factory, when we no longer have a use for it. Who cares what fate befalls them when we sell them? So long as we aren’t inconvenienced in anyway.

No horse asks to be born, broken,ridden, bought, or sold. , in this day and age, when, in Western society at least, very few people are dependent on the horse to eek out a living,

, nobody actually needs a horse, nobody has to have one, horse ownership is not obligatory. Owning a horse is a luxury And a privilege. Surely, if we choose to keep Horses, then don’t we also choose to take responsibility for their welfare?

There are already too many horses I’m the UK. Please let’s stop adding to the problem by breeding foals when they will have no purpose. Let’s stop viewing horses as only being valuable as long as they can do a job, let’s repay the hard work they do for us by taking care of them when they become old.