The components of an “iron horse”, the Victorian era term referring to steam locomotives, were crafted in heavy iron to withstand the enormous pressures of pushing and pulling extremely heavy loads over the rails of the United States. Initially the rivals of horse-drawn or operated vehicles and machinery, the train began to overtake the working animals and eventually supplanted them entirely.
The train cars were connected by heavy coupling mechanisms that locked the units together for lengthy trips along the rails. If not maintained correctly and consistently, the coupling components and the rails would present opportunities for dangerous accidents along the routes or in the rail yards. Weather, lax inspections, failure to lubricate and general gross neglect resulted in tragic and often preventable loss of goods, services and even life in extreme cases. Today, some of those trains and their parts lay rusting in outdoor displays, being useful only as reminders of bygone glory days.
The horse you own, ride and enjoy here in Oregon requires a similar perspective on care and maintenance as the “iron horses” of yesteryear. Whether you raised your horse from a newborn or acquired it later in its life, you have invested time and money in feeding, boarding, vetting, hauling and training it. Any one of these elements is critical to having a healthy, happy and manageable animal.
If you fail to feed your horse quality nutrition, it will not thrive and will eventually decline in stamina, mental acuity and manageability. Poor boarding in Oregon can result in hefty vet bills to address foot issues or general health problems. It can also stress a horse to the point of mental agitation. Without a competent veterinarian examining your horse on a regular basis, small health issues can expand into costly and difficult conditions to treat. A lack of training or infrequent contact with your horse can result in poor rider-animal connections and frustration for both as you attempt to require your horse to perform in a manner that it cannot achieve.
The investment you have made in your horse should be a shining and highly functional demonstration of your dedication to animal care. As you regularly maintain the individual components of horse ownership, the collective effect will be a rewarding and successful connection between you and your animal. Keep the parts of your responsibility to your horse from getting rusty by reviewing and replenishing them with a view to a long and productive relationship.
To start the process of buying acreage for you and your horse, let’s explore your options!