Having a horse involves having a lot of kit, and whilst there are essentials that we need, the sheer variety and amount on offer can leave us feeling overwhelmed about what we really need and trying to store and keep tidy a load of kit we dont. We have put together a list of essentials to help you get really clear on what you actually need.
Grooming kit - body brush, dandy brush, curry comb, mane brush and hoof pick
First aid kit - gamgee, Hibi scrub, thermometer, scissors, gorilla tape, nappies, cotton wool, wound creme / powder, surgical gloves.
3 everyday saddle pads
2 competition saddle pads
Rugs (If needed)
- Turnout - Lightweight
Heavy Weight (if needed)
You may need 2 of each weight if your horse lives out 24/7 and you want to rotate rugs to dry and clean. You may not need a heavyweight rug. Even clipped my cob goes all winter in 100 gms rugs, any heavier and he sweats, He is in at night out during the day.
Stable - light weight, Medium weight and heavy weight - again you might not need all the weights. I would recommend starting off with a light weight and then if needed move up to a medium weight and again if needed move up to a heavy weight. There is no point buying all the weights then realising you won't need a heavy one, and its too late to return and you end up selling it for a big loss, or having to find somewhere to keep it.
Don't forget many of the brands do liner systems now, which are much more economical and easier to clean and store than having separate rugs for everything, so they are defiantly worth looking into.
If your is clipped and cold in the winter you will also need to look at exercise sheets, you can get various different thicknesses and colours etc, but to keep it simple a waterproof hi viz one works great for cold weather, wet weather and hacking.
Head collars x 2 - I always keep a spare
Lead ropes x 3 - again I like a few spares as they do have multiple other uses too.
Feed buckets x 2 - if i need to make up more feeds i use sandwich bags and store them in the feed bins, then just tip into bowls when needed.
Haynets x 14 - I make up a week at a time, however you could use old feed sacks and put the hay in there and then empty it into the hay net each day if you want to cut back on nets.
I also have 1 of each - shampoo, tack cleaner, saddle soap, fly spray, detangler, hoof cleaner / cleanser
Now depending on your horse you may need things like brushing boots, turnout boots, therapy boots etc. But make sure you are using these because you need to and not because you feel pressure too (from yourself or others - self pressure is a thing)
Just remember as long as your horse is happy and healthy you are doing things right. I can be so hard and so tempting to add in extras and buy extra kit to improve performance, increase health etc a lot of which comes from the advertising we see, so make sure you are making informed decisions and not just buying form guilt (horse owner guilt is a thing) or pressure. Burning yourself out trying to buy and store kit you don't need is exhausting and really detracts from the pleasure of horses.
* This blog is for advice purposes only, and you should always consult your vet or instructor before making changes.