Why it’s Important to have a Second Horse

For the past five years, I’ve had two horses. It’s something that stumps my family as I’m the only person who rides and one horse seems like more than enough to them.

From my perspective, my decision is perfectly rational.

It started when there was an empty stall in my barn. I rent a 2-stall barn as part of a co-op situation. When the other boarder decided to move to Florida, I had the opportunity to have the barn to myself. It’s a luxury, but also is much less stressful: if I rent both stalls, I choose the hay, the feeding regime and the turnout schedule.

So, I bought a horse as a “project.” She was a nice mare that I enjoyed riding. In fact, I found that it really helped my riding to have a horse at my disposal that was so different from my other horse. It took me a bit longer to sell my project horse, but eventually she found a great new home.

Once again, I was faced with empty stall syndrome. Then, I had a brilliant idea. I could foster horses for CANTER NE, thereby filling my stall and helping out a cause that I support. The problem was that after a few months, I liked my foster horse too much. I dreaded the time that someone would come to look at him. So, I adopted him.

Recently, I’ve discovered another reason to have two horses. Since the begining of the summer, one of them has been hurt or in recovery. Luckily, none of the issues have been serious ones: Kroni needed some time off to let his hooves regrow after losing a lot of hoof wall, then he had an abscess, then he suffered a mild colic, then he had conjunctivitis. Thank goodness Kroni is fine now, because just this week Freedom had an abscess. Darn rock worked its way under his front pad and caused an abscess that came out his heel bulb. I’m grateful that it was just an abscess; he was looking particularly pitiful as this brewed. I’m also grateful that Kroni is ready to step back up to the job. His feet are looking great and, knock on wood, he’s healthy!

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