Ask any little girl what they want for their birthday or Christmas present and there’s a good chance they’ll say a pony. Beautiful, exciting and fun, ponies and horses hold a special fascination for girls (and boys) of all ages.
Though a good old hobby horse will suffice for the first few years of their love for all things equine, there comes a time when the only thing that will do is a ride on the real thing.
So if your child is fast outgrowing their hobbyhorse and you’re thinking of moving them up to a real-life pony, here are some things to think about when deciding to adopt a horse.
Owning a horse
The ultimate dream of most little girls is to have a pony of their very own. And if you’re thinking about buying a horse of your own, there are some factors you need to consider to ensure you care for it properly.
For example, you’ll need to commit yourself to mucking out its stable on a regular basis, keeping its hooves clean and clear of debris and grooming it ideally on a daily basis.
Having enough space for your horse to exercise and taking it for regular rides are also very important in ensuring your equine addition stays happy and healthy.
The best place to start your equine education is with riding lessons. By taking your little girl for regular lessons she’ll get a feel for what horses are like in real life, learn how to ride properly and learn the basics of equine care.
There are riding schools across the country, even in towns and cities, so contact your local centre and book in some sessions.
If your daughter enjoys the lessons and wants to become more involved with horses, sharing a horse or pony is a good way to progress.
More affordable than outright ownership, horse sharing allows you many of the advantages of owning a horse without all of the associated costs.
However, you will have more restricted access to the horse and may be limited as to when you can go for rides.
For further advice and welfare in helping you to make the right decision to adopt a horse, visit the RSPCA horse information page.