Originally posted on Academie Duello’s blog in April 2012
After your ride, the work’s not done. All that tack has to come off and your horse needs to be groomed again.
8. Untack & clean bit
Once more we’ll join Ali & Noah, for a great video
Although quite complete for the untacking procedure, I prefer a more thorough grooming than this after a ride; and I always start with the feet, which lets you check the legs right away for injuries.
Once you’ve put your horse away, rinse the bit and rub it clean with your towel or stable cloth. This prevents food and slobber from collecting in the corners of the bit. As well as being unsightly, ‘bit crud’ also hardens and creates rough spots which can hurt the horse’s mouth.
When putting tack away, hang the bridle by the crownpiece, with the reins looped up so as not to trail on the floor (in level 2 and up we teach ‘putting up’ the bridle). The saddle should go on its stand with the stirrups run up and the saddle cover on. The girth lies over that, and the saddle pad goes on top of everything, damp side up to air dry. Clean hair out of your brushes and put your grooming kit in order before putting it away.
Next week: Basic feeding