How to Tack up a Horse

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Tie your horse.,
Groom the horse.,
If you want to do the bridle first, tie your pony’s head-collar so that it is around his neck.,
Put on the saddle pad/blanket/cloth.,
Place the saddle gently on the horse’s back.,
Put on his cinch or girth.,
Put on the horse’s boots.,
Unbuckle the cross ties.,
Hold the crown, noseband, and throat latch in your right thumb, under and over the horse’s head.,
Put the crown/headpiece of the bridle over the horse’s ears.,
Buckle the throat latch.,
Buckle the nose band.,
If you have a flash, buckle it.,
Mount your horse and you are ready to ride!

Cross ties, but you may use something else if your horse is used to it. If you tie your horse with the lead rope, it’s always a good idea to do a quick-release (or “slip”) knot!;
, This can be a full groom – both brush the horse and pick out the feet with a hoof pick. As you groom, check the horse for lumps, bumps, swelling, and heat that could mean your horse is unsound. See Related wikiHows below.

, This will make it easier for when you put the bridle on. If doing the saddle first, leave it on his face so he can’t run away., (If you are not going to ride straight away leave the nose band off until you are ready to ride. Place the front on the horse’s withers, a bit higher than normal. Slide it down a bit so the hair will not be pushed down in an unnatural position.

, It should sit in the middle of the saddle pad. Again, make sure it doesn’t interfere with the horse’s shoulder. If it is sitting correctly, most of the time there will be a thin strip on the saddle pad that the saddle sits straight above, and should be coming out from directly underneath the pommel. Remember, if your horse has a martingale attach it before you start when you are putting on the saddle.Take note to also lift the top of the blanket (pad) into place, where the pommel on the saddle is. It’s easiest to lift both blanket AND saddle up, so they can come down gently from a few centimetres above the withers.

, Some horses will bloat – if he is known to do this, tighten it gradually on both sides when he exhales so he can’t do this and tighten it again prior to mounting. Ideally, you should have the girth about 3/4 as tight as you prefer it. If your saddle is unattached attach it with keepers. If using breast strap, or rear cinch, now is the time to position them. Move your horse at least three steps, forward or back. Tighten the cinch or girth again and do so gradually.

, You may have to put on boots or polos but it depends on your horse’s needs. Make sure the strap of the boots go from the inside of the horse’s leg, wrapping around the front so the end if the strap is facing backwards on the outside of the leg

, Put the reins over the horse’s head. This is so they don’t get tangled in all the other straps on the bridle and so that you will always have control over the horse.

, This way, only the bit is being given and does not get tangled. Offer the bit into the horses mouth. Put a finger on each side of the bit and gently push against the horse’s mouth. If the horse does not take in the bit, it is a good idea to put your thumb in the very corner of the horse’s mouth where there is no teeth, and push on the horse’s tongue. This will make your horse open his mouth.

, Some put in the farthest ear first, so the ear nearest will easily slide under.

, When you buckle it, you should be able to put four fingers or a fist in between the throat and the throat latch.

, You should be able to fit one or two fingers under it.

, You should buckle it so it is snug but not hurting the horse.

, Have fun!

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