Building a Horse friendly Pond

As we traipsed over the land that was to become JaxTrax, I noticed that an area to the east seemed slightly mushier than everywhere else. Close examination of the grass showed a density of thin spiky grasses – kindling memories of Boy Scout hikes across Yorkshire Moors – and 5 minutes on Google Earth looking at a darker green patch than everywhere else confirmed my suspicions. We had some sort of a spring on our land! Continue reading →

Thinking outside the Box

One of the earliest dates I remember with my then husband to be, was supper at Est Est Est in Liverpool. Still very much getting to know each other, he set me a challenge by drawing 9 dots in a square on the paper tablecloth. He handed me the pen and said join up all the dots without going over any twice. So I did! He was pretty impressed and probably assumed that I was some smart lady that could think laterally. How wrong he was. I had simply seen it done before, and remembered! I knew that I had to get outside of that box to find the solution. Continue reading →

Nature Matters

Nature intended and therefore equipped the horse not only to survive, but to thrive, without human intervention.

Is it natural for horses:

  • To live in family groups, herds
  • To have a pecking order within that herd
  • To live outdoors 24/7 – animals of prey, fright/flight
  • To forage on the move for up to 20 hours a day
  • To walk in to water to quench their thirst and to hydrate their hooves
  • To self-groom by rolling or by using their teeth/ trees etc. to scratch and/or to mutual groom with another herd member
  • To paw the ground to find minerals then grinding them to a powder with their teeth.
  • To self-medicate, seeking out herbs to regulate parasites
  • To find shelter from inclement weather
  • To self-trim their hooves by covering all kinds of terrain over long periods of time
  • To thermo regulate their own bodies, their natural rug being a layer of mud!

Continue reading →

L’Entente Cordiale for Cosmic Pluto

“And if it doesn’t work out for you I will be happy to take him back.”

We mean well at the time, it is our farewell gesture as the animal we have nurtured is driven off into the distance to a new home. We don’t really expect to be put to the test now, do we? But if we are, what do we do? It is taking the responsibility of the animal in question to another dimension, n’est ce pas?” Cosmic Pluto” living over 1,000 miles away in the deepest countryside of centralFrance, through no fault of his own, put his breeder in this impossible predicament. Continue reading →

Are our Horses “Surviving” or “Thriving”?

I believe that this is a question we should all be asking ourselves.

Most of us, including myself, learnt traditional horse management and classical riding, from the moment we began our love affair with horses. We will all have had different experiences too. There are so many ways to enjoy our equine friends whether it is hacking out, showing, endurance, driving, hunting, dressage, cross country, racing, show jumping or horse agility. Continue reading →