Horse Tack Essentials: The Ultimate Checklist

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If you have recently bought a horse or you are just about to get one, now would be a good time to start buying the tack essentials you are going to need.

There are many items you are going to need for your new horse, which may mean no new shoes or a fancy holiday for the next couple of months or even a year. If this is your first horse, we have included a detailed list of the horse tack accessories and items you are going to need.

We will start will the more obvious tack pieces, which include the items you are going to need for riding:

• The first thing you will need is a saddle that matches up to your discipline. This could be a GP (General Purpose), jumping, or dressage. If you are only a beginner, a GP is probably your best option since these are a lot more versatile when you compare them to specialised saddles. Your saddle should be fitted properly by the appropriate horse professional since tack that fits badly can result in significant issues for both the rider and the horse.

• You are also going to need a few saddle accessories. Your saddle will be useless without a girth, saddle pad, stirrup leathers, and stirrups. A numnah or an extra saddle pad is also useful, which will allow you to rotate and wash them regularly so your horse stays comfortable and clean when you are riding.

• The next thing you will need is a bridle. Unless you have been told that your horse requires a specific noseband type, go for one of the plain cavesson bridles.

• You will also need to buy a bit. Once again, unless you are aware that your horse must jump in a type of gag or the horse needs to be hacked using a kimblewick, your first bit should be a soft and basic type such as the French link snaffle. You will need to measure the horse’s mouth in order to ensure you are getting the correct size.

• You are going to also need riding boots and the correct safety helmet. You should always consider safety before riding a horse, so ensure the riding boots feature a heel, and the helmet matches the latest safety standards.

Below is a list of horse tack items that aren’t essential, yet might become necessary when it comes to your horse:

• Breastplate or martingale for fast hacking or jumping

• Tendon and fetlock boots or brushing boots to stop the horse from bashing his/her legs

• Jumping crop or dressage whip

• Riser pads, gel pads, or sheepskin pads

In addition to the horse tack that you will be needing for riding, there are a few other items you will find useful when it comes to owning a horse. Here are a few other essentials that your horse will need:

• A halter and lead rope or a head collar

• Fly sheets, sweat sheets, and rugs when necessary

• A fly fringe or fly mask for the hotter summer months

• Lunging equipment. This can include a lunging surcingle/roller, a lunge whip, a lunging aid and side reins, or a lunging line when needed.

• Grooming equipment. The basics will typically include hoof oil, brushes, hoof picks, and a decent first-aid kit.

The last items you should seriously consider include a trunk or case and a tack trolley. This will allow you to safely and easily store your bridles, saddles, helmets, boots, and any other equipment you have purchased in a secure and organised manner.

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