Stand up for your horse's care to professionals

Stand up for your horse's care to professionals
Have you ever felt intimidated, overlooked or even minimized when it comes to working with your horse's health care professionals?
Interactions like this can leave you feeling helpless, frustrated and even angry.  Especially if you, as the  caregiver, have some reservations about what is happening or just plain disagree!  Early on I readily accepted the information from my professionals.  After all, I was new to horses and was learning!  But as time passed and I dove into a variety of aspects of caring for my horses, especially hoof care, there were many things I had been doing that just didn't feel right.  I now had options for new, different and what I believed were better things to do.  Things that felt better to me and were more closely in line with what I have for ideas on how I choose to care for my horses. 

 As I learned more, it became easier for me to speak up and ask questions and even disagree with what I may have been told by my professionals, who I had chosen.  At some point, we must realize when and if things may not be working with that professional and seek out another who is more in alignment with our beliefs.   Remember, you are the horse owner who hires the professional.  You get the last word.

 It is important for caregivers to realize that they are the decision makers for their horses.

Knowing we are the decision maker for our horse and actually speaking up and standing our ground, so to speak, are two very different things.  For some it comes easier to speak up while others may need some help and encouragement.  

Luckily, there ARE things we can do to BUILD OUR CONFIDENCE so that we feel empowered when talking with our horse's healthcare professional.  The first thing to do is learn more about the various areas of our horse's care.  Dive into books, watch videos, read blogs, go to seminars and webinars and learn from as many sources as you can.   I can remember when I first got started I was grabbing every book and dvd collection I could get my hands on, for nutrition and hoof care!  Luckily I had a great barefoot trimmer who was willing and happy to share her knowledge and resources with me.  

Just having more knowledge gives us a more solid foundation from which to ask questions and feel more secure about having a conversation with a professional.  Whether the topic is nutrition, hoof care, vaccinations or parasite protocols it is beneficial for you to learn that there are a variety of ways to deal with and promote good health.  And you get to choose what you feel are the best ways to handle these for your horses.

The next thing to do is find and surround yourself with people who feel the same way that you do!  Whether it is the barn community you choose or an online community, finding groups who align with our beliefs goes a long way to helping us feel confident in the decisions we are making.  It gives us a sense that we are not alone, or crazy, for thinking and feeling the way we do.  Just because it's a bit different than the "norm", doesn't make it bad or wrong.   I have created an online community for exactly this kind of support and empowerment.  It's called The Hearts of Horses; Empowering Through Holistic Care.  Join us there if you're ready to feel empowered!

Now get started on these two tasks and see where your confidence journey takes you!  I bet even your horses will notice a difference in your demeanor and energy...😉

All the best,

You are the ultimate decision maker for your horse's health care!

You are the ultimate decision maker for your horse's health care!
Do you feel confident asking questions or disagreeing with the opinion's of your horse care professionals?

If you don't, you'll want to read on...

It is imperative that we, as caregiver's, accept the responsibility of knowing as much as we can about the specifics of our horse's care so that we can be the advocate they need.  Here are a few ways that you can improve your own knowledge and skills, so that you too can be the confident caregiver you choose to be!

Continue to learn by reading, asking questions and joining groups that offer information you align with!  
There is so much information out there at our finger tips that it really only takes some initiative and a bit of time to read, watch videos and learn!  I've created just such a community where you can learn about a variety of holistic care options for helping your horses.  There are posts to read, videos with demonstrations and even interviews with holistic care professionals.   If you're not already in it, I think you might enjoy The Hearts of Horses, Empowering Through Holistic Care.

Listen to your brains... both your gut and your heart!   
That nagging feeling in the pit of your stomach every time you look at your horses feet because you feel something is wrong... means that there is something wrong!  Maybe you can't put your finger on exactly what the problem is, maybe you need to learn a bit more about the foot, perhaps you just need to hear a new perspective.  Whatever it is, listen to that feeling and do  something about it!  If it's hooves, do the free workshop in my group!  Or if you're really serious and want to start trimming your own, find my course here.   Do you need ideas as to why your horse is so itchy?  Check the guides for that topic too.  There are over 40 guide topics on holistic care for your horses in the group The Hearts of Horses, Empowering Through Holistic Care.

Look for professionals who align with your beliefs on how to care for your horses.  
It may be a bit harder and even take some time, but finding the right professionals to work with will make your horse's (and your) life so much better.  Better because you'll be on the same page.  Better because you will trust this person and will be able to have an open conversation  and discussion with them about your horse's care.  Finding professionals who have a similar vision of care for your horses will be your goal.

Have the confidence to question your horse's care professionals if you do not agree!
When you are faced with a situation with your professional, where you have that feeling in the pit of your stomach that says, "this is not right"... be respectful yet firm in letting them know that you do not agree and will be seeking out more information.  It is ok to get second opinions!  People do it all the time for their own health.   Remember YOU are the ultimate decision maker for your horse.

Know that it is ok to say NO to your professional if you do not agree... and be ready to let them go!
Perhaps you are being told, by the professional, that he/she needs to do a particular protocol.  You listen to your heart and don't agree with it.  So you say NO!  Hopefully they will respect your wishes but if they don't, stand firm.  Saying no may mean you may lose them as a professional.  Be prepared for this.  You will then need to search for one who is more aligned with your own beliefs.

Accepting everything your professional says as gospel will only lead to disappointment. Stand up and empower yourself!  Join the The Hearts of Horses, Empowering Through Holistic Care today!

All the best,