A pair of Sieta Equestrian Jeans, worth £75 are up for grabs!
We are celebrating our 2nd Birthday by running a series of giveaways over on our social media pages. First up – a pair of gorgeous Georgian Dollar Equestrian Jeans:
Georgian Dollar was created by Amanda Dowie and they are based just down the road from us in Tavistock, Devon. Amanda was driven by a passion for quality, comfort and design. She wanted a pair of jeans that would look good on or off the horse, mucking out, hacking out or going out!
The Sieta Jean was born! They are made from the highest quality, softest denim offering supreme comfort in the saddle, but allowing the transition from the stable to the high street without compromising on style.
The jeans feature a discreet silicone grip and lycra ankle cuffs to reduce bulk whether in riding boots or country boots.
To Win a fabulous pair of Sieta Jeans, hop on over to our social media feeds. Every time you use the hashtag #georgiandollarjeans you will get another entry. Don’t forget to tell your friends!
There is a huge increase in demand for hemp oil, both for humans and animals. It is highly nutritious and environmentally friendly.
Hemp Oil for Dogs. 5 reasons why it is good…
1. Hemp Oil contains GLA – Gamma linolenic acid – the body converts GLA into substances that reduce inflammation and cell growth. It is good for dogs with arthritis, poor skin and skin allergies plus older dogs.
2. The right balance of Omega 3: 6. Hemp oil naturally provides the right balance of essential fatty acids. Many scientists believe that the balance between the fatty acids is equally as important as the actual amounts of them.
3. Hemp Oil contains both vitamins E & A. These are important antioxidants that support the immune system. The vitamin E within hemp oil also serves to protect the oil and prevent it from going rancid.
SDA – The rising star in the ‘omega 3 world’. SDA is easily converted to EPA in the body, and therefore offers many cellular benefits. (EPA is the major anti-inflammatory fatty acid)
Clean, Raw & Environmentally friendly – Hemp plants are grown without chemicals and pesticides, so they produce a very clean and natural oil. The seeds are cold pressed. This preserves the delicate omega 3 oils which are sensitive to heat. Hemp plants are very environmentally friendly. They put more into the soil than they take out, the plants are great CO2 consumers and nothing goes to waste. None of the more common oils, such as linseed & fish have such credentials.
Our Dog biscuits recipe is simple and easy to follow. A perfect activity to do with your children. Here is our really simple recipe for paw-fect biscuits. 🐾
You will need: 1. A large carrot, finely grated 2. approx 60g of grated cheese 3. 300g of flour (we used ordinary wholemeal, but you could use buckwheat, rice flour etc if you want to make them gluten-free) 4. 35ml TOP Dog turmeric supplement 5. 35ml Pure Devon Hemp Oil 6. 1 free range egg (or 50ml of water)
Knead everything together into a smooth dough. Roll out to approx 5mm thick and cut your shapes. Bake in the oven at 180 degrees C (160 fan) for 10 – 15 minutes until they are crunchy.
Our dog biscuits recipe is tried, tested and approved by Rosie!
Best stored in the fridge in an air-tight container.
Why is Cider Vinegar Good for Chickens?
If you keep chickens you have probably read that Cider Vinegar is really good for them, but do you know why?
For a healthy gut…
Cider vinegar is very acidic and may help lower the pH of the crop. This helps to reduce the growth of harmful bacteria, a bit like a natural anti-septic or natural anti-biotic.
Reducing worm burden…
Internal parasites don’t like the acid pH of cider vinegar, therefore feeding cider vinegar helps deter the worms from establishing in the gut. (It should be remembered that Cider Vinegar is not a wormer, and your chickens will still benefit from routine wormer treatment. )
Combats stress –
Stress can weaken a hen’s immune system. This is why the addition of cider vinegar for a few days following stress (such as a house move, sudden change in weather, fox attack etc) can just give them a boost when they need it most.
Nutrient rich –
Cider vinegar is rich in vitamins and trace elements and full of natural probiotics and enzymes for a healthy gut. It helps their general health and vitality, thus encouraging a healthy plumage and regular egg laying.
BUT Not all Cider Vinegar is Equal!!
Most cider vinegar in supermarkets is filtered and pasteurized. Other than the taste, it isn’t going to give your girls much else. It is important to choose an unfiltered cider vinegar ‘with the mother’ to get the health benefits. The mother is all the ugly looking gunk at the bottom of the bottle, but this is where all the goodness lies. Created from apple residue and pectin, the mother is where all the beneficial, fermented material lies.
It is often believed that dogs eat grass because it makes them sick, so cleanses their digestive system. It could therefore be an indication that the dog is feeling unwell or has an upset tummy. In reality, only about 25% of dogs are sick after eating grass and there is no evidence that they are doing it because they are ill. It is possible that dogs eat grass because they are looking for fresh nutrients, or extra fibre, but the most likely cause – is that they like the taste!
There is no need to worry if your dog likes eating grass. As long as you know that the grass is clean & toxin free, and they are not eating it obsessively. Also they shoudn’t be eating grass and avoiding their normal food.
If you are concerned about your dog’s health, always contact your Vet.
Turmeric may seem an unusual ingredient to add to your dog’s diet. But, there is growing evidence that it has many health benefits.
So, Is turmeric good for dogs?
Turmeric has two key actions, and these are the reasons why it has become such a popular choice. Turmeric is both anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant which means it can support the body through virtually every common health challenge.
Chronic inflammation is common in many conditions. Joint stiffness and arthritis are the most well known, but inflammation is also apparent during many other conditions, including allergies and a sensitive gut. By helping to reduce inflammation there will also be a reduction in pain.
Anti-oxidants support the immune system, helping the body to flush out toxins. As your dog gets older the effects of oxidative damage start to add up, which is why the body ages. Turmeric is therefore a particularly good supplement for older dogs.
For your dog to benefit from Turmeric it needs to be fed with oil and pepper. Turmeric is difficult to absorb but feeding it with oil helps to improve this. Black pepper is also known to enhance the absorption of turmeric. This is why our TOP Dog includes linseed oil and ground black pepper, so your dog can get the greatest benefit.
Don’t be sad, you can still enjoy some amazing special offers from ourselves and these fantastic rural businesses who would love your support…
Muddyfootprints.co.uk – fabulous country clothing, home accessories and kit for your horses and dogs. Enjoy 15% off with the code: 15OFF
Greenleas Equestrian – Enjoy 18% off everything on their entire equestrian store. If you need any kit, now is a great time to buy! Promotion code: BADMINTON18
Elegant Equestrian are offering a FREE matching stock pin with any browband purchased. Look the part at your summer dressage competitions and support a small business.
Fleetwood and Foxgrove are offering 20% off their field range scarves in honour of Badminton and free postage is standard. Offer ends Sunday Evening. Wow, these scarves are stunning!
NKC Equestrian Training are offering 20% off one of their online courses with the code BAD20. Ends 10pm Sunday. NKC offer fantastic courses for all horse owners. These include equestrian First Aid and a huge range of equine health topics, please go and check them out.
And if you are feeling lucky, pop over to Equissentials Dressage for your chance to win a bumper prize this bank holiday – including breeches, an honest riders T shirt, handmade horse shoe hearts & a Hooves & Love gift box!!….
I bet you aren’t so sad about missing Badminton Horse Trials now! Whatever you are doing have a fabulous Bank Holiday weekend.
What does Turmeric do? (and why is it so popular?)
By now, I think everyone has heard of turmeric as a health food supplement for both humans and animals. Turmeric is promoted as a miracle cure for virtually every condition under the sun, but, whenever we are out and about, we are always asked the same question –
What does turmeric do? (and why is it so popular)?
The key active ingredient in Turmeric which was been the focus of most scientific research is Curcumin. This is what gives Turmeric its yellow colour.
Turmeric as an Anti-inflammatory
Curcumin has potent anti-inflammatory properties and works by inhibiting the production of both Leukotrienes and Prostaglandins in the body.
Leukotrienes and Prostaglandins trigger inflammation. Inflammation is actually very important as it helps the body to fight infection and triggers a whole cascade of reactions which stimulate the body to repair the area that has become inflamed. Think of a nasty cough of cold. The mucus is the result of inflammation and helps the body to flush out the bacteria and nasties in your airways. This will prevent long term damage to the lungs. If you have bumped yourself and cut your skin, it will swell and bruise. Again, that swelling is your body is the result of all the important nutrients going to the area to help repair the damage.
But, in some conditions, the inflammation becomes long term (chronic) and becomes part of the problem, such as in arthritis, colitis and even allergies. This is when supplements like turmeric can help – by helping to inhibit the production of leukotrienes and prostaglandins so that they no longer trigger the constant inflammation.
Turmeric as an Anti-oxidant
Colourful food is good for us, and Turmeric is no exception. The bright yellow colour is an indicator of all the anti-oxidants it contains, known as curcuminoids.
Free radicals are damaging molecules in our body which cause oxidation. They are responsible for ageing, but also many diseases. Our body makes anti-oxidants in order to capture the free radicals and flush them out of the system, but sometimes the demand outstrips supply. Curcuminoids are powerful anti-oxidants, even stronger than vitamins such as vitamin C and E. As well as having anti-oxidant properties itself, turmeric boosts the action of anti-oxidant enzymes already within our body. It therefore provides two different anti-oxidant benefits which both support the immune system.
Anti-inflammatory AND Anti-Oxidant
These two huge benefits are what make turmeric so popular, and so widely used. There are many, many health conditions which involve both inflammation and oxidation. Turmeric has been well studied and known to have no adverse side effects, so why wouldn’t you try a natural approach?
Turmeric is suitable for all animals. Curcumin is poorly absorbed and is best fed with oil. Also piperine, which is found in black pepper, will enhance the absorption of curcumin.
We asked the British Dressage Facebook community for their help and they didn’t disappoint! Check out all these amazing suggestions…
1 – Watch tests on YouTube & pretend you are calling the test for them (suggested by Pauline & Amy)
2 – Say your test out loud while driving to work (Stacey)
3 – Use your finger to trace the movements in the air. I always do this & my husband thinks I’m casting magic spells! (Issie & Debbie)
4 – Run round the living room, preferably on an appropriately shaped rug! (Faye, Charlie, Katie & Amanda)
5 – If you have one, use your quad bike to practice the test in your arena (Elin)
6 – You can download BD audio tests and play them on a wrist speaker while you are schooling. (Julie)
7 – Learn the pattern rather than the letters. Draw it out on paper (Nicola & Katie) Natasha goes one step further and suggests colour coding for the different gaits)
8 – Use a toy pony on a dressage arena drawn out on paper (Tiffany)
9 – Sue recommends Dressage Diagrams (www.dressagediagrams.com) where you can buy all the BD, BE and Pony Club tests in diagram form.
10 – Visualize yourself riding in the arena. Caroline suggests that if you do this in bed you are guaranteed to fall asleep before reaching the 3rdmovement! Could be useful if you suffer from pre-competition nerves….
11 – For something a little different, try coaching and hypnotherapy (Jenni & Steve)
12 – Ride a different horse to practice your test, that way the one you are riding at the competition won’t start predicting the movements (Tamsin)
13 – Julia says – ‘Make sure you learn the right test & check for updates’ – I think we have all been there!
14 – Run round your arena on foot (but watch your extended trot after a glass or two of vino!! From Lauren)
15 – Top tip from Viv – never ask your partner to read the test for you. Viv once had a blazing row in the middle of her test as he forgot where he was (to much amusement from the judge!)
16 – Walk through your test on a long rein (Danee & Emma)
17 – Nic suggests that we all get working up the levels as by the time you reach Inter 1 there is only one test to learn!
18 – And if you fancy a brand new, Tech Savy app, check out the BD Dressage Test Pro App where you can listen, watch, draw and generally immerse yourself in your test learning – all on your phone! Created by Tracy-Ann Ormrod, you can download a free trial on the App store or visit www.dressagetestpro.com for more info.
A huge thank you to everyone who got involved on facebook and gave us all these fantastic ideas. No excuses to not learn a dressage test now!
Groundwork – Why Bother?
by Amy Craske, Holistic Horses
If you’ve ever spent anytime doing, watching or learning about groundwork then I’ll bet you think it’s an enormously useful tool for improving or communication with our horses. But if you haven’t, and an awful lot of people just haven’t been introduced to it, you could be quite reasonable in wondering what on EARTH is the point. I mean, its just walking about with your horse, isn’t it? Why would anyone bother wasting time doing that, when they could be riding? What could it possibly do to help?
So, lets think. If you lead out to the field, are you lucky enough to have a horse which calmly follows your every movement and change in speed on the way, and swings himself neatly sideways round the gate so you can close it? Does he never ever spook? Never drag you to the nearest patch of green it sees? Does he plant himself and refuse to move, no matter how hard you lean on that rope? Never nibble your sleeve and crowd your personal space? Does he load perfectly into the trailer every time? Do you feel COMPLETELY safe next to that half ton animal?
If you have that perfect creature, then fabulous, you’re very lucky, we’re all enormously jealous. And some horses and ponies just ARE very good at working out what’s expected of them, or may have had some very good training when they were young. But if your horse does any of the things mentioned above, or something else which causes a problem, groundwork can definitely help you. There does seem to be, amongst some people in the horse world, this feeling that horses just ought to be able to DO this stuff instinctively. They should KNOW to walk quietly next to you, despite that delicious looking patch of grass over there, or despite their field mate flinging itself inside out and upside down twenty feet away. And in my own early years with horses, I’d have counted myself as one of those people! But often they just DON’T, they’re too busy being a horse and not a robot. Would you expect a Great Dane puppy to walk to heel impeccably without any training? Of course not, but we do sometimes expect the same of horses. Of course, it goes without saying that its worthwhile investigating any possible physical cause for any negative behaviour you are experiencing, but sometimes it can be down to a lack of understanding and communication between horse and handler.
So let’s give ourselves a test:
Can you and your horse walk together, matching speeds, without either of you dragging the other around?
Can you easily turn both left and right, without wrestling their head around (we’ll have no Zoolanders here!)?
Could you lead from both sides?
Are you able to back your horse up a few steps without having to poke them in the chest?
Can you move your horse’s hindquarters away from you from a simple touch or voice cue? And the same for its shoulders?
Will he stand quietly for a few minutes, without you being dragged to the nearest grass or fighting to keep him still?
Do you both respect each other’s personal space, with no shoving, nibbling or headbutting?
Does your horse load and unload calmly and easily?
Would you be happy to take that horse for a walk, in hand, around one of your usual hacking routes, and feel safe and in control?
So, what if you failed the test?
If any of those things is a bit of a struggle, then it is well worth spending a bit of time on groundwork to improve your communication and control, and your safety. If you know an instructor which specialises in it, it’s a really good investment to have some lessons. Or if you’d rather not, or funds are tight, get a friend to video you working and see if you can be your own teacher.
Really focus on what your whole body is doing and how your horse responds to you. There are many methods out there (Intelligent Horsemanship is a good place to start!) but you need to find what suits you and your horse best. Groundwork is an incredibly useful thing to spend time on, and I hope I’ve given you a few ideas here. And that’s without even mentioning using it to prepare youngsters, introduce lateral work, develop muscle strength and fitness, pole work or long reining…the list goes on!
About the Author..
Amy Craske is a freelance instructor and behaviour trainer based in east Norfolk, specialising in helping people improve their relationships with their horses. She is training with Intelligent Horsemanship and Ride With Your Mind, and is in the process of becoming accredited with both organisations. She is also part of the Concordia International Pony Club team, and can be found on Facebook at Amy Craske – Holistic Horses, and online at amycraskeholistichorses.wordpress.com.
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