If you’re time- or cash-poor, sharing your horse is a fantastic idea in theory — you get a little help with the chores and bills, and the sharer gets part-time access to the next best thing to their very own horse.
If you’ve been looking for a sharer for a while, though, you might have come across some of these characters…
1. Ms. ‘L-plates’
This person has little or no experience, and thinks sharing a horse is just a cheaper way of learning to ride. They’ll expect you to put in hours teaching them and supervising their every move. While everyone has to start somewhere, seeing you only need a sharer because you have so little time to spend with your horse, this doesn’t appeal to you as much as they think it should.
2. Mr. ‘Know it all’
You picked out this person because they seemed competent and unlikely to feed your precious equine partner a kilo of un-soaked sugar beet – but it turns out they disagree with you about everything, from riding to management. You frequently come down to the yard to find your instructions haven’t been followed, because they’ve done it their way instead. If you find yourself in this situation, we’d suggest you agree to part ways sooner rather than later for the sanity of all involved – including your horse.
3. Ms. ‘Flaky’
The ‘Flake’ is either spectacularly disorganised or a happy resident of a different planet. You become accustomed to receiving texts at 9pm on ‘their’ days saying: ‘Soz can’t get down 2nite’. And they’re just telling you now? Of course it’s not a problem for you to drive back from your conference miles away… If you want to try to continue with this one, set some ground rules about by what time you need to know if they can’t be there, but you may be better off looking for someone else.
4. Mr. ‘Luck Pusher’
This person looks after your horse perfectly competently, but lets all their friends come and ride, lends out your tack, rugs and stable equipment and generally takes the mickey with a capital ‘M’. When confronted, they appear genuinely bemused that you might think this a problem.
You might also be interested in:
While some of us can’t even remember the first time we sat on a horse — we just know that
5. Ms. Perfect
If you are lucky enough to find this person, never, ever let them go. You may leave your job or split up with your partner, but never let your perfect sharer get away. They’re the person who loves your beloved horse as much as you do, follows your instructions, rides well and are just an all-round sensible, responsible, lovely person.
For all the latest equestrian news and reports, don’t miss Horse & Hound magazine, out every Thursday