Children and Horses – A Great Combination
When choosing the cover for this months Horse Digest I couldn’t help but think back to our two daughters, when they were little blond-haired youngsters. By six months of age my wife would set them up on a horse with me. One time our oldest fell a sleep in my arms as we rode across the fields. She was just a toddler. Those are some of my favorite memories.
Today one of my favorite things to do is to give a child their first ride on a horse. They usually are a little afraid at first but when I set them down, they are always six inches taller. We can all relate to those special horses that we would never sell, for all the money in the world, because they are the perfect horses for kids to learn to ride on.
When our girls were about 12 and 14 we bought a beautiful tri-colored Paint horse named Scout. The man we bought him from was an old horse trader. He told us Scout was 12 years old. We found out later from someone who used to own Scout that he was really 24 and a registered APHA named Little Big Man. But the minute we got him we fell in love and the girls learned to ride at a whole new level, because they trusted him.. So, even though we were really miffed at being lied to about the horse’s age, Scout turned out to be the best horse we ever brought home. He was a gentleman, great in the show ring and perfect for a beginner. (Note to self: always get papers when buying a horse…. even if you know the person you are buying them from.) Fortunately for us, Scout lived to be 34 and brought a lot of joy to many a young rider as well as our family.
This story reminds me of an article written by Dennis Auslam in last month’s issue, about the importance of finding a horse that is right for the rider. Dennis says when buying a horse you need to do your home work; don’t buy based on emotion or how the horse looks. Consult a professional and someone you can trust to do an evaluation. This is always good advice. In our case we got lucky.
This summer we wish you many good times with your family and friends as you share your love and knowledge of horses. We also invite you to try out new training techniques and ideas found within the pages of this issue and have fun exploring the wonderful world around you on the back of a good horse. May God bless you and your families.
To read the latest issue of Horse Digest Click here: