If you spend enough of your life around horses…

 If you spend enough of your life around horses you’ll see it all. Life being brought into the world and those magical first steps. You’ll see the trials and tribulations of horses in their ridden careers; their progression and them reaching the peak of their mountain. You’ll see the same in your peers. You’ll see those who stumble along the way and come back with a vengeance to overcome their own issues. Riding a half-tonne animal with a mind of its own is bravery. You really do see it all.

 If you spend enough of your life around horses you’ll see some truly amazing things. 

 There’s also, however, the other side of the coin. Yes you’ll see some amazing things but if you spend enough of your life around horses, you’ll also see the sad things. 

A sad goodbye

 A week ago today, Barnes Equestrian said goodbye to one of our most cherished members of the yard family. Poor Jelle was put to sleep after a short illness. 

When I started Barnes Equestrian I did so under the belief that when I get a horse in to look after, that horse will be looked after as though it’s my own. With Jelle that was no exception.

 Jelle wasn’t my own horse but through working with him daily and getting to know his personality and gain his trust, he felt like one of my own. In times where his owner couldn’t make it to visit him, I’d do bits with him. I’d groom him or I’d get some of the other people on the yard to do bits. Jelle was so sweet and gentle that even at his young age he gave confidence to others. I was always looking for ways to keep Jelle entertained such as giving him some horse-toys to roll around the stable and even put up multiple licks around the stable for when he was in. 

If you spend enough of your life around horses..., Jelle
Jelle

 Everybody loved Jelle and everybody was devastated to learn the news of his passing. 

“It’s hard to not get attached

 Doing what I do, it’s hard to not get attached. I’m looking after these wonderful animals day after day. Learning about them, their quirks, their habits and you grow to know their unique personalities. I miss when they’re no longer there with their head over the stable door – whether or not they’ve simply moved yard or… you know…

 Admittedly I took the news of Jelles passing harder than some horses I’ve owned. I don’t think I’ve felt that way since losing my first ever horse who a rescue horse a decade ago. I’ve been through it before and I know that time heals. 

 There’s only so much you can do in the end. What matters most to me is that I’m there for the animal when they need me most; that I’ve helped make them happy and that they know they’re loved and appreciated right to the end. 

 If you spend enough of your time around horses, you do indeed see it all. The good far outweighs the bad despite the bad being prominent for longer. Horses are like therapy, they do a lot for us mentally as well as physically. 

If you spend enough of your life around horses...
Jelle looking over a stunning sunset

The good and the bad

 Despite the hard times and the bad times; despite the emotional turmoil they can put us through, we’re always thankful to have these animals in our lives. Sure it is heartbreaking to see them go but eventually I always remember that their passing leaves a horse shaped hole to fill. Their passing means another horse can feel that love and comfort we have to give. 

 Thank you Jelle for the fond memories in your time here. 

If you spend enough of your life around horses..., Jelle

 If you spend enough of your life around horses, it’s hard to imagine it any other way. 

This post was written by Scott Barnes of Barnes Equestrian. If you don’t already, please feel free to follow us on our Facebook page!