It’s normal to feel bewildered as a parent when your kid starts to obsess over horses out of nowhere. This horse-crazy kid phase has mythical status; just like every other phase, it will go away one day. However, like different developmental phases, attuned parenting recommends connecting with the child rather than ignoring or waiting for the stage to fade.
Of course, you can not fulfill every desire of your kid. But there are several ways to encourage your kid’s passion and support their emotional development and healthy hobbies.
Horse riding is a thrilling experience for kids and is the best way to invigorate, get fresh air, and feel happy. There are various benefits of riding a horse.
Research says a 45-minute saddle ride can burn upto 200 calories.
You can buildup strong muscles as it is the best form of workout. Horse riding also improves your coordination and balance. And an essential benefit of riding a horse is that it enhances kids’ mood and improves their mental health. It’s a common observation that kids who ride a horse have better cognitive abilities comparatively.
While so many benefits can compel you to buy your kid a horse, it is not that easy. The cost of buying and maintenance is pretty high, and not everyone Is ready for such significant investments. But we have a piece of good news for you that can be light on your pocket as well as make your kid happy.
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Several affordable alternatives are available, where your kid can get involved with the horses without owning one. Hence, continue reading the article for some creative yet affordable ideas
When summer vacations strike, give your child the everlasting experience of their life and send them to a Horse Summer Camp. It is an excellent alternative to buying a horse. So this summer, instead of sending your kid to daycare or letting them get bored at home, you can send them to a horse camp.
Some local stables offer day camps, but for an actual immersion experience, an overnight camp is a better choice. At a horse camp, your kid will be assigned a horse for a week or two. They have to look after its grooming, feeding, and riding. Hence without buying a horse, your kid can experience what it feels like to own a horse. But some of the camps are costly, so you will have to look for a budget-friendly horse camp.
Horse riding lessons
Horse riding lessons are a great way to introduce your kid to essential horse maintenance and riding skills under the supervision of a skilled instructor. Hence, you can look for a stable or a barn located near to where you live. There are two basic types of riding styles; one is English while the other is western. You can choose between the two as the English riding styles include; dressage, show jumping, and polo.
In contrast, the western riding style includes reining, cutting, and rodeo. So, you can start with the basic training of your kid. You can fix their weekly riding lessons once they have gotten attached to a particular riding style and instructor. Hence, this way, your kid can get the opportunity to spend sufficient time with their favorite animal and caress them as well.
Several barns need volunteers to take care of and feed malnourished horses. So you can explain to your kid how these animals need extra attention and what happens if we don’t help them out. After counseling your kid, you can search for barns, horse rescues, and horse therapy programs that are seeking volunteers.
Some barns and organizations also offer lessons and riding time in exchange for help. However, even if they don’t offer such perks, your kid will have enough time to spend with a horse and enjoy.
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It is not definite for your child to own a horse to get the ultimate experience; you can get a membership at a pony club. However, most club members own a horse. Still, you can ask any local pony club if they have horses available for young riders. These riding clubs are an excellent way for your kid to make new friends.
In addition to that, they can learn more about horses in a friendly environment, without it being hard on your pocket. Most of the events taking place in these clubs are free for members, while some require a minimal fee.
You might be surprised to know that leasing is an option; it can change your whole stance on purchasing a horse for your kid. So you can lease a horse and rent it with the possibility of owning it. Hence, when you lease a horse, you pay a monthly fee and the monthly expenses. If god forbid your horse gets injured or gets sick, you won’t have to worry about paying for the costs.
Leasing a horse gives you the opportunity of deciding before you purchase a horse. You will have ample time to get to know if you are ready to buy one for your kid.
Co-ownership is another excellent option for those who do not have enough space at home and enough finances to buy or keep a horse. Therefore, co-ownership allows you to split the cost of feeding and keeping a horse. You can look for someone equally interested as you. But before you get into it, it would be better to consult a seller and get over all the details, responsibilities and costs, so there is no confusion in the future.
A take-home message
Let us be honest; if your kid is in love with a horse, there is no way you can stop them. But there are various ways you can satiate their desire. These ways are less of a weight financially and will give them the ultimate experience until you are ready to buy one. Also, don’t be afraid to explain to your kid why you cannot buy a horse.
Meanwhile, you can go for any of the options mentioned above. This will give both you and your child ample time to evaluate if they are ready to take on the full responsibility of owning a horse.