Emily Wardle (spottydog communications) has been a pet owner for 18 years and currently has a horse and two dogs. Over the years she’s had gerbils, rabbits, guinea pigs, ponies, cats, hamsters and fish.
#PetPawsitivity: Why having a horse is a huge lifestyle choice, but so worth it!
“During my childhood, and through my teen years, having a horse was the most positive thing my parents could’ve done for my mental health,” says Emily Wardle.
“Having the responsibility of the horse to tend to every day gave routine and a well-needed break from my studies, while my dog was there to comfort and offer a listening ear when the stress of A levels/teenage life got too much,” she adds.
“Mucking out a stable was exercise for me without even realising it, so this helped keep me fit.”
“Horses are not an easy ‘pet’,” she adds. “Owning one is a lifestyle choice, and there are times I’ve had to make sacrifices, in terms of finance, time, and hard work. What helped me was having an understanding family who supported my commitment.”
Emily got her horse, Trudy when she was 14, and says her life has changed in so many ways since.
“Thankfully, my mum has been supportive throughout when I was at university and then in full time employment,” Emily explains.
“I don’t think I could’ve predicted the amount of time I’d need to pour into owning over the course of 14 years (and counting!). The winter months are long and hard, but they do force me to get out of the house and do something active. Having a horse is a huge lifestyle decision.”
“My heart feels like it’s going to burst when the dogs give me a little tap on the leg to ‘ask’ for a cuddle,” she says.
Other great experiences have been winning show jumping classes in her youth with Trudy. “I can clearly remember a commentator saying ‘if I was a betting man, I’d put money on this pair to win! and we did!,” recalls Emily.
“Trudy was smaller than all the other horses, but she was mighty.”
Image: Harry and Ron