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Do you dismount right after each ride?

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    A- I normally untack immediately after riding.
    B I have read more than one article about starting horses that explicitly recommends "Just sit on him in the ring while you are giving a lesson" as part of the hose's basic training.

    chief feeder and mucker for Music, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now). Spy is gone. April 15, 1982 to Jan 10, 2019.


      I’ll usually walk my horse around the arena on the buckle while chatting with my fellow boarders as a cool down. He likes to use that time to stretch and always seems happy to finally get to walk near his friends. I’ll get off after he’s fully 100% cooled out which can be up to twenty minutes if it’s a nice day and we’re having good conversation. I’d rather him be walking / hanging out longer and fully cooled out than dismounting right away and hosing him off still breathing a little harder.


        Originally posted by 16 Hands View Post
        goodhors - In all my years of riding in the mountains, some 20-30 years of it, - full days too, 10 or 11 hours were not uncommon, and untacking right afterwards, I have never and neither have any of the people I ride with ever had "pressure sores." Not saying it can't happen but I've never experienced it. Horse was good to go the next day. We did the same as you, on and off a few times during the ride, for lunch or just a break, loosened saddles, pulled bridles, etc.
        This longer waiting after ride to unsaddle, started for me with the long distance trail riding. I took the advice with a grain of salt, from first one new friend, then a half dozen others! They were pretty experienced, rode well, horses in good shape. So I figured "waiting to unsaddle can't hurt, gIve it a try". They could actually ride thru camp, point out horses who would get sore after a days ride, because riders stripped them upon arrival at camp. Darn, they were right! Backs got welted up, horses could not bear to be touched there.

        One of those "weird but true" things. I thought it hoky myself. I also had never seen this problem ranch riding or with any of my friends horses after a days riding. Sometimes we did unsaddle quickly, turn the horses out, then eat supper. No welts or tender backs in the morning.


          I think a varied routine is good. It depends on the horse. I don't loosen the cinch until we get back to the barn, though. I had a sensitive skinned horse (Morgan) that would actually get rubbed right behind the elbow from doing this, so I stopped. It was just a few hairs, but once they lose that, it can progress into a bald spot and then, a sore spot.


            I usually dismount and untack quickly. Occasionally I'll talk on my horse or with my horse in hand, and he will wait there all day long, but I don't make a practice of it.

            Once we get out of the arena and into the stable area I untack him quickly, brush off or hose off, then return him to his stall/paddock/field. I cannot stand when people are done riding and let their horses hangout in the aisle forever. In the way...and they dissappear to who knows where. Also, if I leave my horse in the aisle for a while after we ride, chances of him peeing there are pretttty good.


              Depends on the horse, the job, and maybe the age of the rider? I shoot mounted archery. At a competition, William Tell is expected to do a run of 90 meters, at speed, then stand quietly until his next run which, depending on the number of competitors, can be 20 min or 2 hours. I am geared-up --holding bow and wearing a quiver with arrows --dismounting is a challenge without taking off my quiver and asking someone to hold my bow. I expect William to stand quietly (very quietly) while we wait our next go. He does. Usually he goes to sleep --so does my back up horse Legolus. But they are both fox hunters too --on a hunt (which we do all winter, archery in the summer) we may go at speed for sometime, then stand and listen for hounds or wait for a strike ---some horse dance and prance --my two boys turn off and snooze. Their willingness to do so is one of the things I enjoy most about them. I am well past the age where dismounting and remounting are easily done, equipment or not.


                Someone else sitting on their own horse for a while comes under the MYOB heading. Many people are not receptive to a fellow rider suggesting that they are mismanaging their horse.

                To me, it is not an issue and I wouldnt "cringe" unless the horse was overheated and needed to be hosed off or something of the sort. While I personally rarely sit on my horse and chat for any length of time, my horse (and I think many) seems happy to be not working, even if still under saddle and just chills out.


                  I do get off immediately so that my horse knows she did well and earned the end to her work. I'll stay on a horse if there's a job to do and reason to do that. But if I want to teach my horse anything, I need to be cognizant of her experience of work or being ridden.
                  The armchair saddler
                  Politically Pro-Cat



                    OP, Help us understand why you are concerned, when you say yourself that the horse appears comfortable. Help us understand whether you engaged in this conversation as, "I admire how nicely your horse stands after a lesson; I was taught that some horses were uncomfortable doing this. What has your experience been?" or whether the conversation was, "I see you making your horse stand still with you in the saddle. That's uncomfortable for the horse and poor etiquette." Also, please help us understand why you care whether another rider is "nattering on." Was the nattering preventing you from doing anything? Does your boarding contract state that all conversation while tacked up must be outside the formal definition of nattering? Help us understand why, when someone's horse or barn time might be an important part of stress management, you intervened in a barnmate's happy place?


                      I don't think it really matters one way or the other- as long as your horse is not hot and blowing or anything. I very rarely do any ring work but I always have the horse walk the last mile back to the barn. I usually get off right away because it would be super weird and pointless for me to just sit there on my horse next to the barn for no reason lol. Sometimes I get off and walk the last couple of minutes to stretch my legs. But since I often ride several hours- I don't think I can say someone sitting on their horse for an extra 20 mins is doing it harm

                      And on the point of tack being pulled off and causing blisters- that is total load of bunk. If you are getting sores like that, your tack doesn't fit. I used to occasionally ride with a local trail group who bought into all those old wives tales- don't pull the tack, don't offer water, don't use cold water to cool your horse down, yada yada- all have been proven incorrect. Sorry- believing crap like that is a HUGE pet peeve of mine
                      Wouldst thou like the taste of butter ? A pretty dress? Wouldst thou like to live deliciously?


                        How long I sit on a horse after a ride depends on a lot of factors. How long did I ride? A long cross country school or after cross country phase in competition, I get off as soon as possible. Now, between stadium and cross country, I don't get off and I could sit on the horse for 15 minutes waiting for my turn at cross country. Afterward, get off, loosen girth a bit, walk out.

                        A short schooling ride, I don't think that sitting is a big deal so then it becomes - what other chores do I have to do and is there someone to talk to.

                        When my trainer used to volunteer with a local Pony Club, I would join in the jumping lessons. There would be about 15 of us and we would all warm up on the flat together then organize around a warm up cross rail. Then the cross rail kids would jump the pattern/do the exercises while everyone else sits around on their horse. Then the 2'3" kids would go, then the 2' 6" kids, etc. Maybe you were moving up so you did a lap at cross rails to confirm your horse is nice and forward then sit unil the next level. If you were the first group to go, maybe you got off because you were on a green horse and getting on a more experienced horse next or maybe you were done for the lesson and it was cold out and warmer if you stayed on your horse so you did.

                        No horses seemed to mind either way and my horse is probably much more well mannered about standing around from doing all that standing around when she was young. I do always loosen the girth a bit when I get off of any horse no matter the length or intensity of the ride because I think it's nice and a signal to the horse that they are done (I ride a lot of sale/rehome horses so someone may be hopping on when I get off). I do not begrudge someone who does not loosen the girth because I do not know any health benefits to it, I just think it's nice.


                          Originally posted by 16 Hands View Post
                          goodhors - In all my years of riding in the mountains, some 20-30 years of it, - full days too, 10 or 11 hours were not uncommon, and untacking right afterwards, I have never and neither have any of the people I ride with ever had "pressure sores." Not saying it can't happen but I've never experienced it. Horse was good to go the next day. We did the same as you, on and off a few times during the ride, for lunch or just a break, loosened saddles, pulled bridles, etc. It does irk me a little when I see people using their horses as armchairs but it's their business, not mine. What does bother me is a couple I used to ride with who would leave their horses fully tacked up, no food, no water for hours after a full day in the saddle. They weren't planning on going again, they had some old timer tell them that all the horse's blood was in their legs after a long ride and if you took the saddle right off, you could kill them. I kid you not. These people believed it and they were not stupid, just didn't use common sense. I mean, they saw everyone else untack after a ride and none of those horses dropped dead.

                          I looked up "pressure sores" and all I found was that it's caused by ill-fitting tack. I've never heard of leaving a tight girth on a horse, even from endurance riders. It must feel better for the horse to have a loose girth.

                          I've never thought about this. I always dismount and loosen the girth after riding because I'm done, even if I'm chatting with someone. Especially now that I'm older, when I'm done I really want to get off the horse.

                          This just reminded me of an older, experienced lesson horse I used to ride. He knew that once the tack was off and he was out of the crossties that it was time to go back to his stall. If you stood there holding his lead rope and chatting he would start pushing you forward with his head. He often launched small children. Students quickly learned to take him straight to his stall. Smart horse.
                          In memory of Apache, who loved to play.


                            Originally posted by PetraRiedel View Post
                            Okay, slightly strange question but this recently came up:

                            After each riding session, lesson or trail ride I dismount immediately, loosen the girth and then untack quickly. Often taking the horse handgrazing in halter right after. My previous riding instructors/coaches taught me that you do not use your horse as an armchair - just sitting in the saddle after you are done riding. Apparently this is uncomfortable for horses?

                            There is someone at my stables who routinely sits on her horse a good 15-20 minutes after a lesson/ride and shoots the breeze with people around her. Her horse is obedient, stands quietly and doesn't look overly bothered. But I cringe whenever I see this. I mean I have untacked, cold hosed my horse, gave him treats - meanwhile she still happily natters on and makes no move to dismount.
                            I recently mentioned to her that this "might be uncomfortable for her horse" and "that he probably wants that saddle off after a hard lesson" ...she was a bit put out.

                            So, my question is: do you dismount right away after each ride?
                            Definitely mind your own business. I'm shocked that you actually said what you did. Imagine having a lovely ride and a chat with a friend and having some know-it-all decide that you need to be told you are doing it wrong. Wow.


                              The only time I have ever immediately gotten off is when my horse started this habit of threatening to rear when I tried to walk her out. Standing still wasn’t in her forte either. We have since figured it out and now I work on making her stand while I chit chat. It’s training for my very forward thinking horse.

                              I can’t blame the rider for being put out. If someone had made the OPs comments to me I’d be extremely annoyed that the first assumption is I’m treating my horse like an arm chair, rather than training my horse to be patient.

                              I also will never bring a blowing horse immediately into the barn to stand on cross ties. I was always taught that this is bad. Cool the horse out and when it’s respiratory rate is down, only then do I put the horse on cross ties to untack and hose if it’s the summer or wear a cooler if it’s winter.


                                I was also taught to not use my horse as a chair. As soon as I'm done I hop off and loosen the girth. If it's really hot and they're still breathing hard I'll pull the saddle off and set it on the fence while we walk for a bit.
                                It's not that I think it's "uncomfortable" for the horse, but I equate it to going for a hike. When you get to your site the best feeling is taking that pack off.
                                However, I do agree that teaching patience is important.

                                On a similar note, I don't like when people stand during a lesson. And then when it's their turn to do the exercise the poor horse goes from snoozing on three legs to cantering in 3 seconds. Either walk to keep everything loose, or stand in a proper halt with your horse attentive.

                                I would never call something out over these things though. That's not my place.


                                  When I do schooling rides, i deliberately will stop and get my mare to just chill out for several minutes at a time. I hate a horse that is always wiggling when you ask them to halt for more than 5 seconds. How do you expect a horse to learn to stand in a lineup at a show if you never teach them to stand with a rider?

                                  I don't use my horse as a couch at shows, as she is already working hard enough. If we have back to back classes, I might not dismount between trips, depending on how many riders, but I try to
                                  keep her moving and loose.

                                  Same with lessons. If at all possible while staying out of the way, I try to keep her walking at least on a small circle while someone else takes their trip.


                                    I'm still scratching my head about questioning someone's horsemanship skills over them sitting on it for 15 maybe 20 minutes after a lesson.
                                    ~~Some days are a total waste of makeup.~~


                                      I'm scratching my head that the OP admits to having such incredibly bad manners.


                                        For me, it depends on what we were doing. If it was an actual training session where we were working on things, I will actually get off right after we accomplish something well, loosen the girth, then handwalk to cool out. I swear it makes them think "okay I did good".

                                        But if I'm just hopping on to walk around, sight see, goof off, whatever, I have no problem wandering over to the arena to watch lessons or chat with parents or boarders while sitting on my horse. Ill give them lots of scratches while I'm up there and let them just chill. It's actually really good patience training for young horses. And I'm a huge advocate for horses being able to just stand there and be relaxed while you aren't asking them to do anything, no matter where you are or what goes on around you. That's from my western background, but it has come in handy at shows. Like one of my first events with my mare, we had done our warm up for cross country and were ready to start but someone else in warm up got bucked off and their horse ran loose, jumped the ropes and ran loose out on the course so they had to stop everyone. I just sat on my mare chatting with my trainer while chaos ensued and other horses were getting nervous and worked up, my mare relaxed and practically fell asleep. Then they caught the horse, we did a quick warm up again and then started our course and she was picture perfect.

                                        Basically, I don't think its a bad thing to teach your horse to be able to just stand there and chill. Its a really useful skill for them to have. And maybe not for competition horses, but I end up having the ones I trained be kid horses so I make sure they are used to all sorts of crazy things happening up top.


                                          Railbirds can really suck the joy out of riding. MYOB.