Horse owner's vacation checklist, horse care, equine care, horse worries, keep horses safe while you vacation

You’re lying on a beach in an exotic locale, soaking up the sun, sipping on a fruity beverage, seemingly without a care in the world. But all you can think about is: Will my horse be okay while I’m gone? Is he getting his supplements? What if he’s injured or falls ill? A vacation isn’t a vacation if you’re constantly worrying about your horse. Get the most out of your getaway by following these steps to ensure your horse’s well-being, and your peace of mind.

Pushkar Camel Fair, horseback riding Rajasthan Desert in northern India, Marwari horse dancing, Indian horsback riding, World’s Largest Camel Fair

Never wear a backpack while horseback riding – especially in 35 degree heat when you’re going for a seven hour ride through the sand-blowing desert. I learned this the hard way on the first ride of my 10-day horse safari across the Rajasthan Desert in northern India (our destination: the world’s largest camel fair) and nursed rubbed-raw-by-sand-and-sweat shoulders for the rest of the journey. But in the end, my soreness became just another element of the experience of being pushed out of my comfort zone.

The following November I would get a break from the damp and cold by giving a clinic on Hawaii’s second largest island. I was curious to see what it’s like to keep horses in a place that for most of us conjures up images of palm lined beaches and mai tais, not dressage shows.

lisa rohner schafer, Switzerland horse riding, Stelvio Pass, horse riding,

I remember reading the book Heidi as a little girl and wishing I could live my life in vast meadows beneath the rocky cliffs of the Swiss Alps. I imagined my house would be one of those little chalets, and that I’d have a pony to ride to school through the waist-high grass.

Tania Millen, Blue Creek Outfitting, McBride, BC, pack trips, holidays on horseback, equine holiday, trail riding, pack horse

On the first pack trip of the summer, three of us rode for nine days through some great mountain country in Willmore, dodging rain and snow storms. Swollen rivers on the way out caused some concern, and one horse and rider combination went for an unintentional swim! The trip definitely provided some useful lessons.

Pushkar Camel Fair, horseback riding  Marwari horse, Indian horsback riding, horse ridign Rajasthan India Southeast South Asia, Khumba Palace Guest House horse riding

This was the kind of event I'd been dreaming of for practically a lifetime: riding across the expansive Rajasthani desert and surrounding hills on stunning Marwari horses. I popped another antibiotic, bandaged my foot and set off for three thrilling, unforgettable days of horse trekking in India.