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KEEP CALM- HOW TO WORK WITH NERVOUS HORSES?

Dalia, 12 october 2020
KEEP CALM- HOW TO WORK WITH NERVOUS HORSES?

Hi! As I promised, I am coming back to you with another post!

However, before I start, please be sure to let me know how was your week. Are you all healthy and take care of yourself and your loved ones? Remember that we have quite a bad time now when it comes to meeting friends and organizing various events, be wise so that we can see each other in a larger group as soon as possible and enjoy our presence without any restrictions!

As you have probably seen from our social media, last weekend was very exciting for us. Starting with you, beautifully presented in Design by Dalia clothes on the arenas, through the amazing Warsaw Jumping competition where Dalia competed and had the opportunity to meet you in the store that was placed there, to the victory of Nadia, who won the bronze medal of the Polish Cup! You can see the video of this great ride on Facebook @Lehmannsporthorses, where I cordially invite you and I want to congratulate Nadia once again on her success!

Today's post I would like to focus on the topic of health, mental health of our horses, which, as we all know well, translates to a great extent into the physical condition and thus the success of the entire pair.

Everyone who works with horses on a daily basis knows how sensitive these creatures are and how easily they can get upset or scare by something that seems completely unnoticeable to us. A fresh puddle of rain, a small piece of paper, or even a fly, not to mention banners at competitions, a large audience or the fact of a new place.

At home or at competitions, horses will always find something that they can stress out, which immediately affects their concentration, and this can be very dangerous for our safety and we should not underestimate this in any way.

It is known that as each of us is different, each of our horses has a different personality. One gets nervous more easily, and the other is not so easily surprised. The key is to know your horse and know how to work with them, how to react and how to do it in such a way that his anxiety is nipped in the bud and not allowed to nervous situations.

You should start working on your fears at home. We must learn what upsets our horse and realize that going to the competition can only increase his fears and we shoul be ready for it. Desensitizing horses to various stimuli is the clue. Teach your horse that strange noises or that suddenly more people appear on the arena is completely normal and give him the support he needs. Our task is to remain calm even in the most nervous situations because when we create a pair, we are the support for the horse and it is in us that they should look for it. Horses are very sensitive to their rider's emotions and although the situation is often not easy for us, we have to do everything we can to keep our nerves in check ;)

Once we implement desensitization in our daily work, in the next step it is worth considering the bit we use and every other piece of equipment. Here again, observation is key. Will the horse be able to use the same at home and in competition or will a change be needed? Don't be afraid to experiment because it is known that you will not be correct the first time. It is worth asking and consulting with more experienced people or shop owners who deal with the professional selection of bits or other equipment you use. A badly chosen one may not only irritate the horse more, but also your control on the arena can be worse, which is a fundamental safety issue.

There are many elements at the competition that we have no influence on, but knowing our horse, it is worth observing whether it behaves better when we go out with him earlier to the warming arena or maybe he is less nervous when he stays with other horses for a shorter period of time because we have influence on such things. This one decision can often save a lot of unnecessary mistakes.

Ok, so we have already done everything we could on our part, and the situation is still not what we wanted it to be? What next then?

First of all, it is worth remembering that we can work on behavior, but the horse's character is not something that can be changed in one hundred percent, we can certainly alleviate the situation by using additional supplements that will help keep calm.

There is a very large offer on the market from which we can choose, for my part, I will present you a few companies that Dalia has tested and that we can recommend you.

Starting with the St. Hippolyt distributed by the HippoVet + brand, which includes experienced veterinarians, veterinary technicians, biologists and zootechnicians who, in case of doubt, always help you in choosing a supplement.

In their offer you will find a few products for nervous and excitable horses, which are described in detail on the website and you can read the ingredients.

These preparations are based mainly on natural ingredients that are definitely the best for horses. We also have a choice between granules and liquids which is very convenient knowing what a horse can take better.

Another company worth recommending is Cavalor, which you probably all know well. For years, their products have been praised by horse owners.

Their offer also includes products that will help horses in stressful stations and we also have a choice in what form we want to give the product to the animal. Starting from the powder, through pastes, to liquid products.

I believe that it is also worth remembering the NAF company or TRM available. Each of these companies is famous for a very good opinion in Poland and in the world, and their effectiveness is confirmed by both riders and horse owners. It is worth using products that have already been tested in order to help our horse most effectively in a situation in which they need support.

Remember that stress is inevitable! For you or for your horses. It will always appear and it is not a bad thing, I once heard that if you are stressed it means you care and I have to admit that it’s such a correct statement. Stress is good when it motivates us, the problem is when it paralyzes us and that's when we should seek help and there is nothing wrong with that! This makes us sportsmen who are aware of the importance of the task and most importantly, are able to bear it. Remember that it is worth talking, consulting and exchanging experiences because it is very helpful. If you have any doubts whether you want to talk or seek opinions, I refer you to the companies and specialists working there mentioned above, but I also encourage you to discuss at the bottom in the comments because I think that we are also able to help each other a lot.

Ending today's post, I wish you a good week, as always, I invite you to be active on our social media and contact us! Keep an eye on the Design by Dalia store and let me know if you have any suggestions for the next blog post.

Until next time!

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