Should You Let Other People Ride Your Horse?

Now and then, when people ask to borrow your horse, do you let them do so without a second thought, or are you a little more reluctant to let somebody else ride your pride and joy?

There’s no right answer, and it all depends upon you as a person, and perhaps more importantly, the horse themselves.

The issues don’t just lie with whether you feel comfortable with loaning out your horse, however, as there may actually be legal considerations to take into account too!

The Rider

While it might seem a little snobby, one of the first things you should consider is the skill level of the person you’re lending the horse to.

After all, hopefully you’ve built up a strong relationship with your horse, and you don’t want to damage this by loaning them out to anyone who fancies a ride.

It’s perfectly understandable, and the last thing you want is for someone to have a bad ride with your horse and have this cause a long-lasting negative impact.

This doesn’t mean you should be vetting everyone who asks to use your horse, but just use a bit of common sense.

If it’s a friend who you’ve ridden with before and you know they’ll take good care of your horse, there shouldn’t be anything to worry about.

On the other hand, it’s understandable that you might be a bit wary letting a beginner at the stables use your horse, so don’t be afraid to exercise a little bit of caution.

The Horse

Of course, your decision will also rest quite heavily with your horse and their personality.

Some horses are incredibly relaxed and will be happy to let anyone ride them (so long as they know what they’re doing!).

On the other hand, if a horse isn’t comfortable with a new rider, you can be sure that they’ll let them know!

You’ve also got to consider the possibility that the person you’re lending the horse to might push them too far, and injure them; something which can happen.

This is, however, all completely down to the individual horse and what sort of experiences they’ve had with other riders in the past, and our best guidance here is that you simply have to be careful and exercise caution.

You should know your horse better than anyone, so consider their temperament and behaviour in the past, and make a reasoned judgement call.

Even once you’ve decided that both you and your horse are comfortable with them being ridden by someone else, there’s still something else to be considered.

While it may be unlikely, if somebody injures themselves while riding your horse, you could find yourself on the receiving end of legal action.

And while it’s highly unlikely that any accident could genuinely be considered your fault, it’s an unfortunate fact that we live in a society where people are sometimes keen to seek compensation wherever possible!

Make sure that you and your horse and fully insured before lending them to anyone, just so that you’re covered in case an accident does happen.

For a little more info on the legality of lending out a horse, check out this post from Net Lawman.

In conclusion, you should never lend your horse out unless you and the horse are both totally comfortable. It’s a decision which you yourself have to make based upon the experience of the rider and how you know your horse.

Many riders who don’t own horses themselves don’t quite understand everything that’s involved with owning and the responsibilities that come with it, and it’s not rude to politely tell someone they can’t borrow your horse, and as a rider themselves, they should understand your reservations!

If you do choose to loan out a horse, make sure to check out Horse & Hound’s top tips for doing so, and be sure to keep checking our blog here at Rideaway for further tips, advice and guidance.

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