Category Archives: Uncategorized

We’ve moved!

Hi everyone!

Sorry this blog has been a bit quiet recently. There is a good reason for it, if you bear with me. As I haven’t been riding Saf for some time, there wasn’t a lot of dressage related stuff for me to write about. Raven has been ticking over (perfect putting on her headcollar now) due to us having no lights in our field we can’t do any work with her during the week over winter.

As you may have gathered, my main interest lies in natural horse management, barefoot, track systems, natural diet etc. and I have written a number of blogs here on those subjects. I felt it wasn’t fair to you guys who started reading because this is a dressage blog. To change the name to reflect my new interests didn’t seem right so while I will keep this blog around, I’ve started a new one which concentrates on all things to do with the horses that doesn’t include riding.

If this is something you would like to read more about, I’d love you to join me over at my new blog The Pony Keepers. See you on the other side!

Emma & The Herd x


Headcollar training – almost there!

For the last couple of weekends since my last blog post, Raven has been happily having the headcollar put on over both ears. We’re so proud of her! Claire is now working on increasing the amount of time the headcollar is on, small steps.

Happy new year!

Happy new year to all our readers!

It’s been an interesting year, fairly quiet on the competition front, but achieved lots in schooling. Then a big downer with Saf’s illness, thankfully she’s fighting fit now. Finally we were joined by Raven later in the year, who in turn introduced us to the incredible world of positive reinforcement (+R), clicker training.

Once again, thanks for following us into our 3rd year. We have so much planned for both Saf and Raven.

Much love, Emma & Claire


A new addition!!

Absolutely thrilled to introduce Claire’s new Welsh Cob mare, Lynbrie Megan Mai aka Raven. We went to see her last week and she arrived on Saturday. She’s a total sweetie, 14.3hh approx, 7 years old. She’s had a bit of a chequered past, backed at 4 then was left due to her previous owners poor health. The chap we bought her from did an amazing job with her, she is so friendly and a lot more confident than she was when he took her on, but she’s still a bit nervous and it is likely she will have to be started again.

Needless to say we’re really excited and Claire is very much in love! Watch this space!




Arrived at home

First unaff at Codham

First competition at Codham Park on Saturday. Approx 1 hour 20 minute hack, which involved wading through a flood! This was our first time at Codham, and Saf was Tense with a capital T. We arrived an hour before my time, gave Saf a break after her hack, got changed and on to the warm up. Saf’s eyes were on stalks and the warm up was rather busier than we’ve encountered at Bluegate. There were more lorries, horses and people milling about in general but there was a nice atmosphere and it didn’t feel busy, if you know what I mean. I couldn’t really get any sense out of Saf in the warm up, she just refused to listen and I ran out of ideas after a while. Eventually I managed to gain some of her attention but wasn’t too hopeful as I was called.

You can see from the pix that she was just a ball of tension the whole time. I know it’s a new venue and we’ve not been out since September last year but it was really hard work and I felt like I’d been down the gym by the end of the test. She just kind of fixed her neck and I couldn’t get her to move it. In hindsight I probably should have tried letting her go a bit more but I’m convinced she’d have just shot off at 100mph! Never mind, it was a lovely place and we’ll definitely be back next time. Good points: Well I remembered the test, and she basically did everything she was asked (albeit fast!) and our halt was good.


‘I will never shoe another horse’ – Nick Hill

If you only read one blog this week, make it this one!


by Linda Chamberlain

I want you to meet a trained farrier – one that says he will never shoe again because of the harm it causes. He turned his back on the trade because separating the horse from the ground was the beginning of a destructive process. He became a barefoot trimmer because he was forever fighting against nature, causing the hoof to distort and break from constant renailing. With all our wisdom and technology, there had to be a better way…

Nick Hill 1

His name is Nick Hill and he has a list of changes needed for the domestic horse that is shopping-list long. If anyone can make a few of these demands happen it is this quietly, committed man who travels the world educating owners about a new way of caring for the species.

There is more to looking after a horse’s hoof than the style or frequency of its…

View original post 1,605 more words