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Where NOT to tie your horse!

Published 12-18-2012 10:05 AM | Fernanda Camargo

This blog was written by Toma Matott, who is the Facilities Operations Manager in the Division of Laboratory Animal Resources, and part of our Saddle Up Safely Auxiliary Group.

At some point you will need tie your horse. Most horses will stand tied quietly but you never know what may cause them to pull back on the rope. One incident that comes to mind was on a group trail ride. We had about 30 riders and we had stopped for a lunch break. We were at an old camping area and there was only a limited number of places to tie the horses. Some of us decided to take turns holding the horses while we got our lunch, while others found places to tie. There was a couple of ladies who decided to tie their two seasoned trail horses to what, I think, was part of a fence. Both horses were tied to the same rail. The ladies did not test the rail to make sure it was a secure and sturdy enough to tie a horse to, let alone two horses.

It happened so quick, I still don’t know what caused the horses to pull back, but when they did, they pulled the rail free. There were, now, two frightened horses running throughout the campsite area united by a 10-foot rail between them. Each time the rail hit something the horses ran faster in an effort to get away. The rail was bouncing erratically off objects in their path, spooking the other horses as they ran past. Some riders were scrambling to try and catch the horses while others were trying to get their horses out of the way and to safety.

The horses finally broke free of the rail and were able to be caught. While there was no serious injury to riders or horses, it could easily become deadly had the rail hit a person or another horse.

Always make sure you tie your horse to something solid and sturdy, that will not break free in case the horse pulls.

Where not to tie your horse 

These miniature horses are tied to a trash can.

Page last updated: 8/1/2013 10:38:25 AM