If you have mastered the art of saddling a horse, then unsaddling should be a breeze. The strategy is to just reverse the saddling procedure.
If your horse will be standing for an extended period of time without being ridden or unsaddled, it is customary to loosen the front cinch slightly to allow your horse to breathe and rest. This will aid in the development of a horse with the willing attitude that we all desire.
If you loosen the cinch too much, you can end up with a horse who is wearing the saddle on his side rather than his back, which can lead to a severe disaster.
The saddle straps should be loosened in the opposite sequence in which they were fastened.
- Remove the breast collar first. The near-side (left) rig strap is untied from the dee ring after the center strap is unclipped from the cinch center ring. The off-side (right) dee ring is still linked to the off-side rig strap. The breast collar should next be fastened around the offside stirrup or put over the seat from the opposite side.
- The flank cinch is then unbuckled.
- The front cinch is the last strap to be removed.It is critical to undo the other straps before starting the front cinch.If the horse is startled, the saddle can slip off his back and onto his side if only the flank cinch or breast collar is fastened – a surefire prescription for disaster.
- Prepare the latigo for your next ride by securing it. Return the latigo to the rigging ring in a tidy manner.There are several options for doing so.
- Tighten the ties.Go to the off side (right side) with both cinches loosened to secure them.While many people just throw both cinches over the saddle seat, we believe this method is messy and frequently results in the straps sliding down while carrying the saddle. There is a smarter way to do it. Hang your flank cinch buckle from the front cinch buckle’s buckle tongue. Under the cinch buckle, thread the saddle keeper and hook it on the buckle tongue.The cinches will now hang securely and neatly, and you will be ready to ride again.
- Remove the saddle and pad from the saddle.Instead of just pulling the saddle off, lift it a little and then remove it, making sure you clear the horse’s back and do not hit him with the saddle or a stirrup. Pulling the saddle off without raising it can irritate a horse, and it is also bad for the saddle. Because the pad tends to attach to the saddle anyway, it is usually simpler to remove it with the saddle. Brush the underside of the pad after removing it to ensure there are no twigs, dirt, or other debris that can annoy your horse on your next ride.
- Check and groom your horse. Your horse has performed admirably for you. Do not just remove his saddle and store him. Take the time to groom him properly. He deserved it. If he is damp, dry him off. Brush him thoroughly, especially in the saddle area. Look for any sores, lumps, or dry patches that could indicate a tack or saddle fit issue. Check his feet for any rocks he may have picked up along the way.
Consistently performing proper saddling and unsaddling procedures will help our horses develop a willing attitude.
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