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Books on horse ownership and is a 11.3 big enough ?

(32 Posts)
limepickle Mon 01-Aug-11 16:19:18

After months and months of lurking (and dreaming), owning/loaning may be becoming a reality 25 years after first desperately wanting one! ( no encouragement needed here smile.)

Can anyone recommend a book that will act as a refresher on "how to look after your horse". Although I re-started riding a year ago, its a long time since I did any pony-caring, tack cleaning etc, so would like to feel more knowledgable.

Also, I've seen a 11.3hh Dartmoor - would that be about the right size for a 5 amd 7 yr old to learn on ?

Any thoughts and comments greatly appreciated.

Disasterpiece Mon 01-Aug-11 16:31:19

11.3 Dartmoor is perfect for children grin

Im not sure of nay books but going on a stable management course might be a brilliant refresher for you? Do you know of any local riding schools that do them?

CMOTdibbler Mon 01-Aug-11 16:36:35

I've found the Pony Club book pretty good, if somewhat bossy grin. Our pony is pretty low maintenance (ie, lives out 24/7/365, no shoes, natural mane and tail), so the stable management stuff wasn't v appropriate in the main

Disasterpiece Mon 01-Aug-11 16:40:55

I think it is because it will refresh you on mucking out, good grooming, tack cleaning and how to put it all back together again, basic feeding, ways to keep organised etc.

Dartmoors are fab in that they dont require much maintenance as CMOT says.

kayb123 Mon 01-Aug-11 16:58:39

my kids had a dartmoor x shetland (more dartmoor) just perfect.
Books are ok, but the best knowledge is 'hands on'. and if you make a mistake dont worry it happens, its all part of learning

sequinart Mon 01-Aug-11 17:08:50

my only problem with a 11.3 would be that they will outgrow it very quickly. My 5 year old is currently learning on a 13.2 and is absolutely fine on him.

Mirage Mon 01-Aug-11 19:08:36

My 5 and 7 year old had an 11.2 on trial and were fine on him,although I did wonder what we'd do if they had a growth spurt.Then we ended up with a 13 mare and they look equally fine on her.

I've refreshed my skills on here,horse and hound,horsegossip and new rider websites,but mostly learnt by cocking up and knowing better next time.grin

limepickle Mon 01-Aug-11 19:15:27

Many thanks for the responses- really useful. Great idea about a stable management course( guess I'll be the oldest on that then !)
11.3 too small? Wow, I thought it would be a great confidence giver. They're having a lesson tomorrow so will see what they are put on there( although noting from another thread that your own horse is a different kettle of fish compared to a riding school one!).
Will check out the pony club too. Thanks for the advice.
Gosh it's a big decision making the move to your own horse/pony isn't it??

Disasterpiece Mon 01-Aug-11 19:20:06

It is a big decision and a big responsibility. Its like having babies grin

Are there some experienced people on the yard already? You will always find people are more than happy to offer help and advice. Maybe even a bit too much, again, its like having babies. grin

limepickle Mon 01-Aug-11 19:37:17

Disaster- yes, bit like babies. I'm thinking maybe a part loan would work- I get some hands-on, girls get more time on a pony, and gives me longer to think about the size. The pony I've seen is for sale- not sure whether they would contemplate a sharing arrangement, but if anyone knows of a first pony in the Fleet are looking for a sharer then would be interested smile

snicker Mon 01-Aug-11 19:47:55

I don't think 11.3 is small unless the dcs are especially large. I was on an 11.2 Welsh sec A until I was 12/13 (I'm a bit of a shortarse). You can't ride properly if your legs don't get past the saddle.

limepickle Mon 01-Aug-11 19:52:48

Cheers snicker- I thought it would last them til 11/12 ish too!

sequinart Mon 01-Aug-11 21:16:59

11.3 until 13 shock! d1 is 11 coming up to 12 and would look ridiculous on an 11.3!

Disasterpiece Mon 01-Aug-11 21:19:44

Yes, to be fair at 13 I had a 13.1 but rode up to 15.2s

13 is a long way away fro your 7 year old though.

Also by then she might have a better idea of what sort of riding she wants to do, there are age/size restrictions.

Butkin Mon 01-Aug-11 22:02:32

Size is child dependent and Dartmoors do "take up the leg" more than some small breeds so will last a bit longer.

DD (8) has a 11.2 Sec A she has nearly grown out of and a 12.2 Sec B which she is growing into but has ridden since she was 7.

We are currently looking for a 12.0 Show Pony or Hunter Pony for her but realise it will probably only last her until the end of next season.

I'm amazed that you've got young children on a 13 hand pony - they must surely be overhorsed.

Mirage Mon 01-Aug-11 22:20:00

Our 13h mare is 20 Butkin,she is kind,steady and not forward going, the dds [now 6 and nearly 8] are managing quite well on her so far.None of the PC instructors or other horsey people who have seen them ride her have mentioned that they may be overhorsed,and none of them are backward in sharing their opinions.grin

Disasterpiece Mon 01-Aug-11 22:35:23

To be fair though there is a massive difference between a 12.1 Section A and a 12.1 SP/PBA. The chunkier ponies have a wider chest and deeper girth and can carry a taller child and look better than the same child on a SP.

Saggyoldclothcatpuss Mon 01-Aug-11 23:19:53

Id say 11.2 was perfect. Its a big mistake to overhorse your kids. DD is average height and 12 yo. She is only just starting to be a bit leggy for a section A, and looks totally fine on our traditional shetland. She is just progressing onto our forward going 13hh NF, but only in the school. They are not equally suited for hacking yet. Yes, a 13hh older horse that was quiet would probably be fine. If like Mirage you could find one, BUT it only takes one spook, or nap where your 5yo has no hope of stopping the pony, and thats their confidence shot! Also, 13hh is a big drop for a little one to fall from. Go for the dartmoor. unless your DCs are giant kids, a dartmoor will be fine for years! My friend is 5'1 and 36. she still rides her small ponies!

frostyfingers Tue 02-Aug-11 07:54:47

There is a wonderful book called "The Manual of Horsemanship", I think from the Pony Club - it's a really good, easy to understand book of pretty much everything you need to know.

limepickle Tue 02-Aug-11 08:18:22

I didn't realise pony height would be so controversial wink.
Frostyfingers, thanks for book recommendation, will definitely look into getting that.
I must admit the thought of putting either of them on a 13hh pony is a bit scary. Saggy, as you say, one spook and that may put them off horses for a long time (which is the last thing I want).
Will approach the owner of the dartmoor and see what she will contemplate. He looks very cute in his picture so I need to be strong and not be persuaded to buy him !!!

sequinart Tue 02-Aug-11 08:25:45

All three of mine learnt/are learning to ride on the same pony - he is 13.2. Top child is ace rider, other two shaping up to be very good. Instructor classically trained and I have never heard the overhorsed comment! BUT I am very tall and all my children are tall also.

kayb123 Tue 02-Aug-11 09:10:09

its not really height that is a issue its the weight of the child.. look at all pony club member, most people would say they are under horsed (ponies to small), but they bomb around fine and still have plenty of fun.

as long as pony and child are having fun i dont think it matters what they look like. i have given my children pony rides on shetlands to my 17h shire (4yrs and 5 yrs) smile

marialuisa Tue 02-Aug-11 15:50:46

Your pc different to ours then. We have lots of kids on too big, whizzy ponies who are then strapped down with bubble bits, flashes and side reins but whose riders carry schooling whip because their legs barely reach the end of the saddlesad.

DD is a tall,slim 10 years and looks just right on her 12.2hh section b,but he's a traditional sort. She also looked fine on a super slender 14hh PBA last week.

I think the biggest factor is whether the child can manage the pony without it being in every kind of gadget going. I dread selling Dpony because I worry about him ending up with a younger rider (because of his size) and then getting put in horrible tack because when you ask for speed he's very fast and very sharp and there's no way an average 7 year old could cope with him.

Butkin Tue 02-Aug-11 17:11:17

Just wondering what size saddle you have on a 13hh pony. DD has a 14 inch on her Welsh A and a 15 inch on her Welsh B. If the saddle was any bigger it would drown her and her legs wouldn't come below the saddle flaps.

By overhorsed I didn't mean that the horse wasn't good natured - just that if we put DD (slim but tall 8yo) on a 13hh pony the whole picture would be wrong.

That is why we're looking for a 12 hh Show Pony as it would suit her body shape and she could ride on in First Riddens until end of next year.

Mirage Tue 02-Aug-11 20:04:58

Hmm,don't know about saddle size,I'll have to measure it.Both dds legs come down well below the saddle flaps.They had a private lesson at home this afternoon and the instructor said that dpony wasn't too big for them.

I didn't go out looking for a bigger pony,tbh,but she ticked all the boxes otherwise,we knew she'd been through our local PC with her last 2 owners so checked her out with the PC instructors we know.She was bombproof,had hunted,done xc,lived on a farm,so the fact she was a few inches higher than we'd plannned on was a minor thing.

Horsey neighbour is talking about getting a show pony[he started out with sp's about 50 years ago] and asked me if the dds would ride it for him-I'd imagine he'll be looking for something about 12.

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