Retirement is a big decision and one we start to spend a lot of time thinking about as our horses get older.
Will we know when the time is right? Is now the time? What if retired life doesn’t suit him? Will he be bored? Will he start to lose condition..? The list of questions whizzing around my head in the months prior to Hamish’s retirement, were much like this and I really didn’t know the answers to any of them at the time.
It was a difficult time and I really felt the pressure was on me to make, what felt like, such a big decision.
But I’ll be honest, I knew when the time was right and everything just fell into place. Retiring Hamish suddenly became the easiest decision and it’s fair to say a few months down the line, retirement most definitely suits him.
Here’s five things that took me by surprise about Hamish’s retirement.
Retirement doesn’t mean a boring life!
I had wondered whether Hamish would find retirement boring, would he have enough stimulation day in, day out. What was I worrying about?! He’s got a new lease of life, playing and grooming with his friends in the field, watching the building works on the yard and going for walks in hand. Boring doesn’t even come into it!
Hamish hasn’t lost any condition, in fact he looks better than ever!
I’ll be honest, I was worried that Hamish would lose condition and start looking a little old and fragile once I stopped riding, but it’s quite the opposite. Without the stress of riding (which he found quite hard towards the end) he’s looking much brighter; his coat is super shiny and he’s looking in great condition, even if I do say so myself.
How much I really do enjoy horsey life
Don’t get me wrong, I have always enjoyed being at the stables, it feels like home. But without having my own horse to ride anymore, I didn’t know how I’d feel. Worry not, if anything, it has reinforced my love for horses and the equestrian life. I just love spending time at the stables, being with the horses and pottering around.
I’m closer to Hamish than I was before, if that’s even possible!?
Spending so much more quality time together on the ground, we’re closer than ever. I’ve learnt new things about him, little characteristics I’d never noticed before or perhaps never had the time to, new scratchy spots and ways he interacts with his friends. It’s been lovely to get to enjoy a different side of life, with the old boy.
I don’t have any extra time…
Believe it or not, despite not having so much to do, I have no extra time. Somehow, I still manage to spend the same amount of time at the stables, I’m often still there until 7pm and I couldn’t tell you what takes up my time, but there’s none spare – not that I’d have it any other way of course.