Giving Thanks for Our Horses
We strive to practice gratitude and thankfulness all-year round, but each year as we head toward Thanksgiving, all that we have to give thanks for is even more prominently at the forefront of our minds.
We have so many people and experiences to be thankful for, and, of course, we have our horses. These four-legged friends and family members give us endless reasons to be thankful all year, including these six that we’re grateful for this Thanksgiving
1. They relieve our stress.
At the end of a long workday or amidst the chaos of life, our horses can be better than any therapist. They provide us with a safe place to leave the rest of the world behind and focus only on the horse beside or underneath us. A study from Washington State University even showed that children who spent time grooming and working with horses saw a significant reduction in stress. (Be right back as we head back to the barn!)
2. They teach us.
Some days our horses teach us patience or what happens when you miss a distance to a fence. Most days, they teach us responsibility; they teach us to forgive like they forgave us for the poor ride the day before. They also teach us love, trust, compassion, and what it means to experience great joy.
3. They help us to be our best.
When it’s hard to get out of bed at 5 a.m., it helps to know that it’s because there is a horse out there waiting for you to care for it to ride or to show. They give us motivation to show up every day, and they drive us to work hard to continue the privilege of having them in our lives.
Through hours spent in the saddle, leading horses, lifting hay bales, cleaning stalls, or filling water buckets, they guide us to be the best physical version of ourselves. Through their companionship, they help us to be the best mentally healthy version of ourselves.
4. They’ve brought us together with friends and family.
We owe many of our closest friendships to the bonds formed on the back of a horse. Our horse friends know us and understand when and why we would rather be in the barn. They get it when you say you would rather buy your horse a new blanket than go out to eat this week, and for that we are thankful.
5. They allow us to experience some of our greatest moments.
Whether it’s a major victory in the show ring, a trail ride in a spectacular location, a fulfilling job that we love in the equestrian industry, or a special time spent with just our horses and our friends, many of our greatest moments in life are because of these animals that we love.
6. They’re our best friends.
Our horses love us unconditionally (but especially when we have treats). They never judge us. They accept us as we are. They lend us an ear when we need someone to talk to and a shoulder when we need one to cry on. At the end of a good day or a bad day, our horses are the ones that we want to have around.