TOP 10 Eco Tips for Horse & Rider

Your Horse. Your Earth Your Choice.

Be eco-aware and make little “green”” changes in your horse-keeping. You will notice a big difference.

1. Reduce, re-use & recycle.
Participate at tack swaps, sell or buy your used tack on eBay or craigslist or donate gently used tack, grooming tools, and barn keeping tools to a local equine shelter. Set up a recycling bin in your barn and encourage everyone to recycle. Share old issues of horse magazines friends in the barn or go paperless and get them online with Zinio.

2. Read product labels.
Avoid products that do not list their ingredients. Opt for products made of natural ingredients which means no silicones, parabens, sulfates, artificial fragrances, petrolatum or formaldehyde releasing agents.

3. Clean up the way you CLEAN YOUR TACK
Use eco-friendly, phosphate-free detergent on your pads and blankets? Get the whitest whites with non-chlorine bleach. Choose leather cleaning products of natural origin.

4. Clean up the way you CLEAN YOUR BARN
Again, avoid chlorine bleach. Choose from variety of eco-friendly cleaners and keep the air in your barn toxin-free. No more irritated eyes or lungs. Use baking soda, vinegar, and lemon juice or natural all purpose cleaner.

5. Feed local & organic whenever possible
If you have access to organically grown feeds and feed supplements go for it! These feeds are grown with wisdom and care by farmers who use organic farming methods in harmony with nature. Organic feeds are free of dangerous pesticides and genetically modified ingredients (GMO). Buy local, organically grown hay when possible. 

6. Apples: our big pet peeve
Apples can actually contain very high amounts of pesticides and herbicides. To be safe, feed organic if you cannot wash the apple thoroughly under warm water to remove at least some of the pesticide residue. Read about more foods that you should always eat organic.

7. Hydrate 
Buy yourself a reusable stainless steal water bottle and carry it with you. Not only will you produce less waste, you’ will also save money.  Bring a reusable coffee mug to the coffee shop the next time you need a little pick me up before heading to the barn. And make sure you get a fair trade coffee grown sustainably. Our favorite: 454 Horse Power Dark Blend from Kicking Horse.

8. Show ready
Dry clean “green”! Avoid “perc” dry cleaning. “Perc” is a toxic chemical harmful to both human and earth. Opt for dioxide-based dry cleaning that cleans just as well and is toxin-free. Skip the shoe polish (full of toxins) and buff your boots with a beeswax based product. 

9. Horse pool & car pool
Space in your trailer? Share! Space in your car on the way to the show? Give somebody a ride.

10. Toss the shoes or set up a shoe recycling station.
Did you know that majority of old horse shoes end up in a landfill? Opt for barefoot if your discipline and the quality of your horses' feet allow . If your horse needs shoes, consider pulling the shoes off for the winter and let the hoofs regenerate. Encourage your farrier to avoid the dump and recycle the shoes that cannot be used anymore. Set up a shoe recycling station in your barn or a find an artist who will turn them into something magical.