10 tips when longing for your horse

A virus is keeping the world in suspense. No reason to panic, but an important invitation to pay attention, to think about many things of daily life and to stick to common rules. For all our protection. Together we can do it! From tomorrow on, I too will only work from home and will not meet people anymore. And of course, I am grateful to all those who are really busy during this time and who are doing a great service to our society.

However, it is now also clear that all this also affects the contact with our horses. Riding schools were closed today, exhibitors are not allowed or should not visit their four-legged friends anymore. So: better we do not go to the horses now. One can interpret it differently and say, we give the horses a little vacation from us. Here you will find everything worth knowing about the closures of horse farms in Austria.

Of course, I will miss my horses Náma, Hreimur, Óþreyja and Skriða a lot in the near future and so I have thought of 10 things that could help me a little bit when I am at home all day longing for them. Maybe one or two of these thoughts will be useful for you too?

1. To know that my horses are well and that they are well looked after helps me enormously. Getting good information from the stable owners and trusting them completely is a huge help and relief. My stable mates and I will receive photos and videos of our horses. It is not so difficult for me to sit on the sofa with a book and smile and think about them. When the longing becomes strong, I just imagine the horses lying in the sun and enjoying their holidays together. Thanks to Karin, Charly and Bianca who take care of the horses, I am very, very grateful to you.

Picture by VI photography

2. I assume that we will all be well supplied with food in the near future, so why not try horse – delicacy – recipes? I did once. For Námas birthday 4 years ago. Unfortunately, I ate all the goodies myself then, because they turned out to go wonderfully with the coffee. But…. I could start such an attempt again 😊. Do you have a good recipe? I would like to publish it.

3. I have never completely read through the “Icelandic Horses – Riding Teaching” by Andrea-Katharina Rostock and Walter Feldmann, also called the “blue bible”. Much to my shame I confess. This is an excellent opportunity to make up for it. But I am sure there are more books …

Islandpferde Reitlehre by A-K. Rostock und W. Feldmann

4. Have you seen all the episodes of “Fest im Sattel”? I know, in times of Netflix etc. it might not be en vogue anymore. But the story about an Icelandic horse farm, which by the way was filmed between 1986 and 1990 at the farm of Jens Füchtenschnieder in Germany, is a wonderful distraction from boredom at home. There are 56 episodes! The focus: Icelandic horses, money worries and lots of love! Or the episodes of “Die Mädels vom Immenhof” from 1955/1974 where the film plot is based on the youth novel “Dick und Dalli und die Ponies” written by Ursula Bruns.

5. You do not yet have a training plan for your horse for the time after the virus break? Well, if the longing for your own horse becomes too strong, you could think about it. Why not create your own Bullet Journal? And if you have a lot of time … why not? There are really nice ideas https://lifebywhitney.com/bullet-journal-ideas/

6. I don’t know about you, but when you were children or teenagers, did you have a horse book that really sparked your love for animals? I’ll tell you mine: it was “Bille und Zottel” by Tina Caspari which captivated me soooo much that I even named my son after one of the main characters! I think it is time to read it again. Maybe I feel again the incredible longing I had as a child when it came to own my own horse. Did you also have a favourite horse book?

Bille & Zottel_Tina Caspari published by Schneider-Verlag

7. Despite all the inconveniences, the ban on going out has a small positive side: the money you would have spent on anything else could be put aside to buy a great horse blanket or a new bridle afterwards?

8. All horse articles – manufacturers have published spring catalogues! Even if I can’t buy everything, browsing through them on the sofa is a lot of fun.

9. I’m going to get my riding clothes back in shape. You could put leather grease on the leather of your riding breeches? Or plug a hole?  Renew a foot – rubber? Maybe you could make old riding clothes usable again. This point of course contradicts point 7 and 8, but a well-planned combination of these points might be desirable…

10. This year I was planning to compete in a tournament for the first time. How fit you have to be for training and competitions became quite clear to me quite quickly. So I want to use the time at home to get fitter myself! Strength exercises can be done at home and you are allowed to go running despite the ban on going out. Alone though, but that doesn’t matter. When I walk through the park alone, I imagine sitting on the back of a horse and galloping through nature with my horse. Maybe that will help?

What do you do when you get homesick for your horses? I’m curious …

English Version by Susanne Fröhlich, thank you so much.

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