The Benefits of Children Having Horses as Pets

There is a timeless and priceless experience lying just beyond the screen door in today’s digital era where kids are frequently absorbed in displays and technological devices – the company of a horse. In this in-depth article, we will explore the surprising advantages of kids owning horses and take you on a tour of the numerous elements that go into creating this special link between kid and equine.  Join us as we explore the many benefits that come with having horses as your children’s beloved friends, whether you are an experienced equestrian family or considering this equine journey for the first time.

woman standing next to a horse holding lead

Why Horses are Great Pets

We think horses do adore their owners. Owners of horses are known to genuinely care for them. The decision to keep a horse as a pet requires a significant commitment from the owner. The majority of horse enthusiasts are aware of and appreciate the time and effort required to own a horse as a pet. Although having a pet horse comes with a lot of duty, their love of horses is more significant. Any owner will always enjoy having a horse as a pet since they can stroll, ride, and take care of it for the rest of their lives. 

Children Can Develop Empathy

Children who are exposed to animals can start to grasp how their activities affect other living things, which is another advantage. This can aid in their early development of empathy and compassion. Children who connect with horses in particular have been proven to experience significant emotional effects.

Some child psychologists employ horses as therapy animals to aid youngsters who may be dealing with emotional and mental problems. This is known as horse therapy, and research has shown that it can assist kids in having enough room to promote good mental wellness. This success can be attributed in part to horses’ intrinsic capacity to empathize with people, as they have done for millennia.

One of the few animals that have lived with humans for practically the entire history of civilization is the horse. They existed in ancient Greece, assisted in relocating Native American families throughout North America before European settlers did, and have persisted as essential contributors to modern civilization despite the development of automobiles. Because horses have been around people for what seems like “always,” we may believe that they have emotions similar to those of humans.

Horses are a fantastic role model for children to acquire empathy because of their enormous emotional capability. Children may instantly bond with their equine pals and desire to do all in their power to ensure that they always feel their best. For people who can’t keep horses too near to their homes, this type of emotional relationship has also been observed in dogs and certain domesticated pigs.

Managing Illness

People with various diseases or ailments might benefit physically and mentally by owning a horse as a pet or simply from being near one. Being with horses can be helpful for those with Alzheimer’s. They find peace and relief from the frustration that comes with having Alzheimer’s thanks to equine therapy. Treatment improves patients’ spirits and curbs undesirable behavior.

Lowering Stress

All animals, including fish, birds, dogs, and cats, have the remarkable capacity to lower our stress levels just by being among them. Most of the time, they become your four-legged buddies after petting them and going on walks with them. Horses are incredibly calm, therefore being near them helps one to feel serene. They remind us to calm down and appreciate the gifts that Mother Nature has given us, which so many people take for granted as they freely roam the natural world.

The fact that horses are constantly there for us is an all-too-obvious characteristic. The coral and pasture are there to meet our needs and make us happy, whether we want to stroll about them or take a leisurely ride on them. These creatures have a remarkable affinity for people and are always delighted to make them happy. 


Horses are known to learn anything from four to seven times more quickly than people. Since they are prey animals and are highly perceptive, they must be rapid learners.

Horses are a special kind of animal in that they combine intelligence with instinct and emotion. Their senses prompt them to make quick, complicated judgments that affect both themselves and other people.

The speed and incredible trainability of these animals is another illustration of their sharp intellect. It is amazing how well horses are trained for dressage, jumping, vaulting, racing, and other equestrian sports. We soon understand what excellent athletes these animals are after seeing any of their sports. 

Fun to be Around

Horses are interesting creatures, especially the Camargue horses. They are incredibly strong and full of energy for play. Each horse has a unique personality and set of qualities that you will undoubtedly adore.

Horses are wonderfully peaceful and lively when they live in a herd and are allowed to wander free and graze all day. The same is true for horses that are kept in stables and given proper care. These horses are enjoyable because they have the attitude that they want to be with you and do all in their power to make you happy. They may communicate their selves by expressing their inherent contentment.


Since horses have a lifespan that is longer than that of most pets, which is between 25 and 30 years, you have a lot of opportunities to form a close attachment with your horse. A horse is a significant commitment that reveals your true character and personal growth.

The horse is used to and familiar with humans since they have coexisted with us for thousands of years. We are not strangers to horses; we are buddies. We tend to all of their requirements while they are our pets. Every day, we see to it that they are fed, given access to water, groomed, given medical attention, and most importantly, shown affection. Horses are so sensitive that they can sense and comprehend our moods. They will make every effort to console us if they notice that we are distressed.


Horses are really elegant and beautiful. We are fascinated by their majestic stances and beautiful motions. They are portrayed as a representation of strength and bravery in literature, film, and the arts all around the world.

One cannot express enough admiration for the horse’s beauty. From their prehistoric cave drawings to our modern Western movies and wildlife programs on TV, we are familiar with them. 

Emotional Assistance

Horses can perceive human emotions, according to studies in the field of equines. Horses, like dogs, will soothe you and become more playful if they see you are upset or depressed.

Some horse breeds have an innate ability to detect human emotions. People with specific mental and emotional medical issues can schedule therapy sessions with these horses. These interactions have a therapeutic and restorative effect on the patient. Although the reason for these good interactions is yet unknown, it is thought that on a spiritual level, the horse and human interact and exchange energy.

In nursing facilities, people and horses have another amazing interaction. Special horses are introduced into nursing homes and permitted to explore the facility of their own choice; they naturally enter areas where patients need assistance.  


Horses are simple to care for, despite what you would think. Although it is a significant commitment, giving someone food and a place to live is extremely simple. For a little cost, you may visit, ride, and pet horses at several ranches around the nation. If you are not yet ready to acquire one, you do not need to invest a lot of money.

Long Tradition

Horses have played significant roles in mythological and historical stories. They served as the inspiration for innumerable tales of kindness, strength, and victory. Horses and humans have a long history of living side by side. Horses have been companions and important factors in influencing some of the most important periods in the history of human civilization, from Kings to Queens, villages to kingdoms.

Children Can Learn to Take Responsibility

A pet needs a lot of things, but one of the main things is consistent, responsible care. They require love, care, food, exercise, grooming, occasional trips to the vet, and all of these things. While all of this is true for any pet you would get for your kid, it is especially true for horses.

Horses require a lot of area and labor to maintain due to their size. The good news is that this presents a wide range of responsibilities and obligations that you can assist your child in developing over time. For instance, cleaning out your horse’s hooves may not be something you want small kids to be responsible for, but they may watch you do it and then take up the task when they are older.

 When it comes to being in charge of teaching an animal, horses provide a special possibility. Kids can benefit directly from a horse that has been educated properly since they can ride it and form bonds with it, as opposed to a dog or a cat that they may be able to teach but typically cannot ride. This advantage may encourage kids to maintain their new obligations.

the black horse on a green grass field

Learn How to Keep Children Safe at the Stables

Your kid must understand the fundamentals of safety if they have just shown an interest in riding or if you have started keeping horses on your property.

Here are recommendations for keeping children safe while they visit the stables:

1. Establish Horse Contact Regulations 

If you have established clear guidelines for horse contact from the beginning, it will be much simpler to maintain safety standards for your children. If you have horses on your land, this is extremely important. 

Choose whether or not a child can engage with any of your horses without a parent or other adult present. The same applies to any friends who come to visit; they must also get permission from their parents to spend time in the stables. 

When riding alone, even grownups might get into problems. As a result, you should establish guidelines for riding alone in the arena when no one else is present and for going on solo hacks. 

2. Promote self-assurance but avoid aggression 

Although you want your child to feel secure around horses, they should never act aggressively. It is important to assess how children are utilizing aids like spurs, long whips, and crops, and to educate those of them who are misusing them in more proper behavior.

Explain that even experienced riders form partnerships with their horses rather than having a dominance-submission relationship with them. 

3. Beginning outside of the paddock

Start learning about safety away from the paddock with your first class. You should emphasize to children the strength and possible timidness of horses the younger they are. More information about how horses behave as prey animals in the wild may be useful for older kids. Make sure your youngster is aware of the potential triggers for a horse’s fright, such as clothing that is flapping, dogs that are underfoot, and unexpected loud noises.

Additionally, kids should not run around in the pasture or the arena since doing so could cause a horse to start chasing them, believing that it is part of a game. Children should carefully back away from a loose horse instead of turning their backs on it. Some horses prefer to only be approached from one direction or require a slight forewarning before being approached, such as a cluck or a whistle. 

Never allow your youngster to stand directly behind a horse; instead, have them stand out to the side. When grooming a horse, having one hand on the shoulder or thigh will warn the groomer if the horse kicks reflexively after reaching a vulnerable area, which can happen even with well-behaved horses on occasion. Your youngster should pluck the feet while bending over toward the horse’s back and be prepared to rapidly exit the path if required. 

4. Head over to Calm Horses first 

If your child is still relatively young, apprehensive about new situations, or has never been around horses before, introducing them to calm, “bomb-proof” horses initially may help them feel more at ease. If there are any therapeutic horses in the neighborhood, they will probably welcome the opportunity to interact with new children. 

Contrary to popular belief, smaller horses and ponies are not usually the most affectionate. When children are aware to be cautious of their enormous hooves, gentle giants can sometimes be the most trustworthy characters. 

5. Begin with Groundwork 

Your youngster has to be able to perform some simple ground exercises before getting on the saddle. If they are tall enough, kids should be able to tie cross ties, lead a horse on a rope, and make a quick-release rope knot to secure a horse. Advance to basic ground activities after that, such as weaving between cones and backing. Before a session under saddle, longing is a safe technique to allow the horse to work off any “naughties” and to build a connection with the animal. 

6. Keep your expectations reasonable 

Although some children are immediately at ease around horses, expectations for their skills should be reasonable. A horse that is difficult for a trainer to capture in pasture would probably not behave any better for a youngster. The same goes for leaving a horse that is difficult to load into a horse box with a young person when it is time to travel. 

7. Set a good example 

Last but not least, your child will frequently copy your behavior. Expecting your child to follow your rules when you consistently break them is unreasonable. How frequently have you encountered an adult rider who is unconcerned with donning a helmet or walking around the paddock in sandals?

If you set a good example, your child will have a rewarding connection with horses and perhaps even teach their kids how to be safe in the future. 

girls walking on a beach with horses and a dog


In conclusion, owning horses as pets offers kids a wide range of significant advantages. Horses provide emotional support, a profound connection, and companionship that may last a lifetime. Children and horses may form a link that is not only rewarding but also a time-honored tradition full of history and character development with the right care and direction.