For many horse enthusiasts, sharing a trail with an equine companion is the closest thing to heaven to be found here on earth.? But without the right preparation, even small emergencies can turn that blissful ride into a nightmare.? Always let someone know where you will be riding and how long you expect to be gone for.? Some barns even hang a clipboard that riders can sign in and out on, ensuring that no one accidentally gets missed.? Depending on where you ride, wildlife might also be an issue.? You may need to work with your horse to get him comfortable with hanging bear bells from either the saddle or bridle.?
Keep your saddlebags stocked with extra items so you don?t have to pack for each ride ? this will save time and keep you from forgetting any vital items.? However, always keep your most important emergency items, such as a cell phone, attached to your belt in case you are separated from your horse.? A hoofpick is necessary for dealing with stones lodged in your horse?s feet.? A small emergency first aid kit, including disinfectant wipes, gauze pads, bandages, and antibacterial ointment is also a good idea.? Baling twine can come in handy for broken straps, particularly on bridles.?
As riders we tend to look out for our horse?s well-being first, but don?t forget to pack for your own needs as well.? A bottle of water and small snack can make your ride more comfortable.? Much of your horse?s first aid kit will likely prove useful to yourself in an emergency, but you might also wish to carry a small personal first aid kit with you.? And of course it goes without saying, a proper fitting helmet is a must.? Happy trails!?