It’s funny how when you do the same work for more than 2 decades you can sometimes forget how little you USED to know.
Growing up, I rode horses every day… often twice a day.
It was almost always my beautiful mare CoaCoa. She worked hard. And yet she was never fed properly… in hindsight I can see how many issues that actually caused!
Life on the farm for our horses was good in many ways. They had big paddocks with plenty of pasture. They were kept with friends and were treated kindly.
But there are so many things I would love to be able to go back and change!
There was no internet of course so information was not as readily at hand… but we were ignorant of so many things that would have made life for our horses better.
Access to salt, hay fed at intervals during their long days of work, hay fed before riding, supplementing with a proper balance of vitamins and minerals, regular dental care, and enough higher energy feed to enable them to cope with the long hours of regular work we asked of them are all things I would have done, had I known better!
And ulcers! I cringe now thinking of CoaCoa’s habit of pulling back her lips and chewing at the bit, of her weight loss when in work and her sometimes (sometimes often) anxious behaviour… it all screams ulcers to me now but back then I didn’t even know gastric ulcers for horses were a thing.
I guess now this is a lot of what drives me to do what I do.
To help other horse owners to know and therefore do better for their horses.
I can’t go back and change what I didn’t do for CoaCoa. But I can help other horse owners like you to learn about what is best for your horses so that history doesn’t have to keep repeating itself and more horses don’t live the way my CoaCoa did in her early years!