Fourth of July Horse Safety: How to Keep Your Horse Safe This Weekend

Fourth of July Fireworks

July is here, and that means Independence Day is just around the corner. Although the Fourth of July is fun for humans—who doesn’t enjoy making the most of the beautiful summer weather with barbecues and other outdoor fun—the festivities we find so entertaining can prove terrifying for our pets. While brilliant display of fireworks in the night sky elicit “oohs” and “ahhs” from us, they can cause problems for horses who live near them. This year, take a few simple precautions for horse safety to ensure that the holiday weekend is worry-free for both you and your horse.

Put Them Inside

Experts recommend keeping house-trained pets indoors during loud festivities for safety reasons. Similarly, horses should be put in the barn if they’re usually put out to pasture on hot summer nights. Being inside creates a sense of security if things get crazy outside. Closing the barn doors will also shield them horses much of the noise associated with fireworks and the drunken revelry of your neighbors.

Check for Safety Hazards

Before it gets dark, check the barn for anything that could cause harm should your horse panic. This should be a routine part of horse care, but holes, broken boards, protruding nail heads and the like can cause extra harm should your horse panic. Take care of this stuff before it becomes a problem.

Pay Them a Visit

If you can, consider making a quick safety trip to the barn to ensure everything is okay. A treat and a few pats from a familiar person can go a long way toward soothing a stressed animal—not to mention ameliorating your own anxiety.

Give Them a Distraction

Give your horse something to do if you know they will be within earshot of fireworks. Even throwing them an extra flake or two will give them something to concentrate on besides loud noises. Natural supplements can also help calm hot-tempered horses. If you know your horse is going to have a really hard time, you can ask your vet about administering a sedative.

ID Your Horse

July 1 is national ID Your Pet Day, which should serve as a timely reminder to make sure your horse has some kind of identification prior to the Fourth. Many companies offer equine microchipping services. This is a good permanent method for identifying your horse should the worst happen—be it a drunk driver, a scared horse leaping a fence or anything else.

However, if you want something less permanent, temporary horse ID bands are a great option for quickly addressing this issue. Plus, you can use it for other occasions, such as trail riding. For last-minute identification, you can even make your own. Just make sure that it’s tight-fitting enough that it won’t easily get caught on anything (and quick-release in case it does).

Have a safe and happy Fourth of July!

Stable to Street: Goode Rider Vogue Jean Breeches

Goode Rider Vogue Jean Breeches (Front)

Sometimes you have to go somewhere straight from the barn. But that’s okay. In these situations, the Goode Rider Vogue Jean is just what you need. Perfect for on-the-go riders, these denim breeches are pseudo jeans. Details like pockets and a stitched zipper fly help you transition from the barn to the city and back.

Why Do We Love the Vogue Jean Breeches?

With a composition of specially twisted yarns for super stretch and soft velvet feel, the Vogue Jean is as comfy in the saddle as it is out. Featuring a double-button closure, the custom-fit stretch waistband is comfortable on every body.  Although the sleek mid-rise fit is sexy, it does not sacrifice coverage. Delicate, subtly equestrian whip embroidery on the back pockets alludes to your equestrian activities without broadcasting it. Meanwhile, the discreet knee patches match the denim fabric, blending in to appear like true skinny jeans. Plus, the breeches are available in both regular and long styles, so you’re never caught with high waters when you swap your field boots for sandals.

How Do You Pair the Vogue Jean Breeches?

These incredibly flattering breeches pair perfectly with a cute tee for that post-ride errand. For days that involve post-riding errands, pair our Charcoal Denim with a deep burgundy riding top (we might recommend the Long Sleeve Ideal Show Shirt in burgundy or gunmetal link). However, for more lengthy after-barn activities like lunch or drinks, the Blue/Black Denim breeches are ideal. Simply swap out your riding shirt for your favorite top when you leave the barn. Dress things up with a nice sweater and statement necklace for more sophisticated occasions.

No matter what you wear them with, the Vogue Jean breeches are simply destined to become a favorite piece—wherever you’re headed.

Stay tuned for the next installment of our “Stable to Street” series featuring our favorite products that transition effortlessly throughout your life.

5 Far-Flung Equestrian Vacations

Equestrian Vacations

Longing for a vacation? Next time you’re planning a trip abroad, schedule one around your four-legged friends. Because let’s be honest, you’ll be drooling over the foreign ponies the whole time, anyway. These five equestrian vacations are stops to check off every horse-lover’s bucket list.

Visit the Irish National Stud

The horse holds a dear place in the heart of Irish culture, so it should be no surprise that the Irish National Stud is, in many ways, a shrine to the Thoroughbred. Located in the heart of the country in County Kildare, the stud is home to both future stars and the so-called Living Legends, a group of resident stallions that includes Beef Or Salmon, Hardy Eustace, Hurricane Fly, Kicking King and Rite Of Passage. In addition to guided tours of the facility and an equine museum that regales visitors with the history of Irish racing heroes who called the stud home (such as Arkle and Sea the Stars), the stud boasts gorgeous Japanese gardens and St. Fiachara’s Garden, a verdant garden of plants native to the Emerald Isle.

View the Lipizanners in Vienna

The ornate Spanish Riding School is a sight every equestrian must see. Established over 450 years ago, the baroque hall adjacent to the royal palace was commissioned by Emperor Charles VI in 1729. There, in the capital of Austria, guests can watch the team of snow-white stallions perform the advanced dressage work for which they’re famous. Bred at the countryside stud farm in Piber and trained at Heldenberg in southern Austria, the stallions—who are born black but turn white as they mature—are trained to do the airs above ground movements, as well as advanced dressage such as passage and piaffe. Onlookers can also book somewhat cheaper tickets to the less formal schooling sessions in the morning, where they can watch the masters work with the greener stallions in the same ornate arena.

Tolt in Iceland

The adorable Icelandic horse is known for more than just its diminutive stature and friendly nature. In addition to the usual gaits, Icelandic horses possess two special gaits: the tölt, a four-beat gait akin to a pace, in which the front and back legs on the same side move concurrently; and the fast but unstable skeið, known as the “flying pace.” The latter is used for harness racing, while the former is extremely comfortable for long days in the saddle. In addition to brief rides, many outfitters offer multi-day treks, so you can see the rugged Icelandic landscape from aboard the most reliable form of transport: a hardy Icelandic horse.

Foxhunt in England

Get an authentic taste of English country life by participating in a foxhunt. But be warned—this high-octane sport is not for the faint of heart. You’ll find yourself flying over hedges and through muddy moors at breakneck speed in pursuit of a pack of howling hounds. Per the Hunting Act of 2004, all sanctioned hunts are mock “drag hunts,” meaning the dogs are merely chasing a chemical scent laid beforehand. Foxhunters are infamous for having a good time, both in and out of the saddle, so be sure to pack a flask in addition to your boots.

Trek the Mongolian Steppe

Most horses that are thought of as wild, such as mustangs, are actually descended form feral horses escaped from European settlers. To see legitimately wild horses, you have to go to central Asia. There you can see the rare—and endangered—Przewalski horse, which roams the Mongolian steppe. These equines play a large role in the culture of the Mongolian people. As an old proverb goes, “A Mongol without a horse is like a bird without wings.” In addition to allowing them to live nomadically, horses provide a food product: kumis, a beverage made of fermented mare’s milk. Although cow’s milk is generally used to produce this mildly alcoholic beverage en masse, it’s traditionally made using mare’s milk, which has more sugar. Go beyond your comfort zone with the only truly wild horses in the world.

Tech Tips: Stay Cool This Summer

Goode Rider Cool Clothes for Summer

Things are heating up in our neck of the woods, and chances are your location isn’t far behind. This leads up to the annual conundrum: How to stay cool at the barn? Helmets certainly don’t do riders any favors in this department. Things are even worse if you plan on showing: stock ties, show coats and long days out in the sun all contribute to toasty rides. Lucky for you, we’ve compiled some tips to help you stay comfortable when the mercury rises. Cool down with these technical tips for riding wear this summer.

Light Colors

Everyone knows black attracts heat, by why is that? Basically, certain colors absorb certain wavelengths of light. Albeit not a “color” in the technical sense, black is essentially a muddy combination of all the other colors. This means that is absorbs all light, making it hotter than other colors. White, on the other hand, reflects light.

So opt for lighter colors when possible. White is best, but even a pale blue is better than dark blue when you have the choice. The Goode Rider Super Seamless Shirt comes in an array of lighter colors, from white to aqua to a beautiful orchid long sleeve. It’s great for schooling, and the moisture-wicking fabric will keep you cool under a show coat, too.

Breathability

Human bodies have built-in mechanisms for staying cool when it’s hot out. All you have to do is allow to to function correctly. Good fabric is key for allowing your body to sweat. This sounds easy, but it can be tough when you have to wear full-seat breeches. Goode Rider’s Seamless Designer Tights are made from a polyamide / spandex material that’s both breathable and moisture wicking. They have ventilated knees for better air flow, as well.

The fabric is also anti-bacterial for odor control. However, you still need to wash them often. Like skin, the pores of the fabric can get clogged by dirt, so it’s important to keep them clean so they function their best. That means rotating clothing or washing your riding clothes (as well as saddles pads and wraps, for your horse’s sake) after every ride, if you can.

Structure

If loose clothing is your friend, then structure is your best friend. Shirts with seaming keep fabric from clinging to your body, which is uncomfortable and causes more sweating.  Another thing to note is that heavy embellishments weigh clothes down and trap the fabric against your body. Avoid lots of bling until the weather cools off. The Best Shirt is a great simple, structured option. It’s loose-fitting with seams on the sides to keep the fabric away from your torso, and does not have excessive embellishments. The Boyfriend Shirt is another great choice. It even comes in a summery gingham print!

Sun Protection

Lastly, don’t forget sun protection. Long sleeves may sound like the last thing you want to wear on a hot day, but it will keep you safe. It will also prevent that awful scorched-skin sensation so you won’t feel hot the next day. The Long Sleeve Ideal Show Shirt is perfect for hot weather. It’s wicking and breathable, and it will protect your arms from the su’s harmful rays during long days outside. The zip front can be zipped up to protect the back of your neck from sunburn. If it’s really hot, you can even wet the collar of your shirt to keep yourself cool.

We won’t tell if you just want to hose yourself off along with your horse after a long ride. (We’ve all been there.) Whatever you do, be sure to stay cool out there!

Goode Rider at Western States Horse Expo

Western States Horse Expo

The Western States Horse Expo is coming up! For those of you in northern California, the Goode Rider gals will be in Sacramento all weekend long. Come visit us in the “C” Building at Booth #3801. We’ll be having our annual Goode Rider Cash N’ Carry Clearance Sale at the trade show, with all items priced at 50%-80% off!

The Horse Expo is open Friday, June 9 through Sunday, June 11 from 9am-6pm (closes at 5pm on Sunday). If you’ve never been, you’re in for a treat. In addition to incredible shopping and food, attendees can take part in all kinds of fun and games throughout the long weekend. Even returning attendees will be be pleased to discover something new: The Expo has constructed new arenas to accommodate the bursting-at-the-seams schedule of events this year.

Horse Expo Clinics

From basic horsemanship skills to specific disciplines, the Horse Expo features a wide variety of clinics. Furthermore, they’re all free to audit with the price of admission! The popular “Clinicians Unmounted,” a group setting in which participants can meet the clinicians and ask questions, is also happening this year. Clinicians include the following stars:

  • Charles deKunffy, world-renowned for teaching classical training traditions and classical riding skills
  • Pat Parelli, founder of modern day Natural Horsemanship and a complete program of developing both horse and rider
  • John Lyons, “America’s Most Trusted Horseman”
  • Josh Lyons, founder of Josh Lyons Certification Program
  • Warwick Schiller, reining
  • Jim Masterson, equine massage
  • Kalley Krickenberg, three days of colt starting
  • Brandi Lyons, fundamentals, confidence, control
  • Jochen Schleese, saddle fitting

Educational Sessions

The Western States Horse Expo University will host a number of educational sessions. Topics include equine research, health, nutrition, fitness, behavior and more. Featured experts and educators include the following:

  • Deb Bennett, horse anatomy and biomechanics
  • Bryan Owen, photonic heath and proper foot balance
  • Kristin Stephens, equine nutrition
  • Rick Roncka, equine pharmaceuticals
  • Carole Herder, hoof boots and saddle pads
  • Jeff Moore, therapeutic connection between horse and rider
  • Richard Godbee, animal nutrition and nutritional biochemistry
  • Ron McLoughlin, lateral system of training focusing on horse’s footwork
  • Lyn Ringrose Moe, Cowboy Dressage
  • Heidi McLaughlin, overcoming fear

Trail Symposium

There is also a lineup of speakers dedicated to trail riding. This year, the Trail Symposium experts touch on a wide range of backcountry topics:

  • Teresa Spencer, horse safety
  • Samantha Szesciorka, long distance riding
  • Jerry Heitzler, mules
  • George Archer, packing
  • Carolyn Gilmore, wildfire preparedness
  • Debra Mason, Dutch oven open-fire cooking
  • Lucy Badenhoop, planning ahead and preparedness
  • Dennis Serpa, Back Country Horsemen of California

Rodeo Poker

This sport challenges riders to make the best possible five-card poker hand. How? Instead of the standard rodeo-style numbers on the cows, there are giant specially-designs playing cards! Riders must think strategically and ride competitively in dynamic, timed events including PokerPenning and 2ManPokerSort.

Rigs and Digs

In the market for a new trailer? The Rigs and Digs area of the Western States Horse Expo showcases the most horse trailers on display in the entire country. Mechanics are onsite to put on a new hitch, rewire lighting or do anything else needed to make driving a new trailer a safe experience.

BLM Adoption

BLM Mustang Adoptions are scheduled to help home wonderful, professionally-started mustangs.

 

We’ll see you there!