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new to horses and to forums
Hello and welcome, Rhonda!

You are correct to think, if you do something wrong with your horse, it may teach him a bad habit.

Every time a human approaches a horse, the horse gets a lesson, good or bad[Smile]

If you Google "horse riding lessons in Blue Ridge, Texas" you will get some hits. I came up with a few BUT beware because not all teachers are created equal -- just like when we were in school[B)]

Mink is a great name. He sounds like you have stumbled upon a terrific first horse; sadly that doesn't happen too often with new horse owners[Sad]

Meaning, what you need is someone to give you and your hubby lessons, with Mink, as it sounds like he's pretty well schooled.

But even the most patient of horses will eventually take advantage if the owner is unaware of their subtle attempts at "one upsmanship" -lol

If you find yourself starting to say "this isn't the same horse I bought three months ago", that means he is starting to take advantage because you aren't recognizing the little errors you might be making in simple things like his daily handling.

Someone who gives lessons and trains, can be of immense help in that department.

Yes do you have a large animal vet? Where you live you might be limited to someone who does cows, horses and other livestock, as opposed to someone who is strictly a horse vet. Not everyone has the privilege of picking and choosing their vet[Sad]

Since you're new to horses, when you do find a vet, that would be the person I would ask for a couple of farrier or barefoot trimmer recommendations, regardless of whether you want to keep shoes on Mink or keep him barefoot.

Vets normally don't like to do that but if you look pitiful enough and being new in the horse world, I bet the vet will cave and give you a couple names[8D][Big Grin]

Shoes or barefoot - what to do? If Mink is already doing well without shoes, leave him that way for now.

You won't be riding him for awhile, it's cheaper, and if his hooves are healthy/strong, barefoot is better; at least until you get going on the riding and decide how often and what terrain you will be riding in.

Yes, teeth are important. Take note of how Mink eats from the feed pan and how he eats his hay. If he turns his head sideways or stretches his head over the front of his feed pan, he's probably got some tooth issues that the vet or equine dentist needs to take care of.

Even if he's not doing the above but he is quidding hay (chewing up his hay but spitting it back out in a ball), he's got back molar issues that also need help from the vet.

Vaccinations: I'm sure the Seller told you when and what Mink's last vaccinations were? If not, it would be helpful if you could get that information, so as to give it to your vet. Your vet will help you decide what vaccinations Mink needs, based on where you live, what Mink's job will be, and if he will be traveling in a horse trailer somewhere[Smile]

Lastly, like everyone else, I hope we see a picture of Mink soon[Tongue]

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