5 Tips to be a More Eco-Friendly Equestrian
There is no question about it, nearly every industry is dirty, including the equine industry, and I am not talking manure. It takes a ton of resources to have the best for our equine partners and what we buy encourages or disturbs current production. Here are 5 tips to becoming a more eco-friendly equestrian:
- Show logically. Traveling to big shows can quite often burn a lot of fossil fuels when hundreds of horses and riders are singularly traveling to an event. If you have access, show locally more often or even do online events. If you must travel for a weekend, try carpooling for both you and your equine friends. If you have a big show, use that PTO to stay for an extended time to offset the travel and still make sure you’re carpooling.
- Fertilized is better. If you can help it, the ideal way to board a horse is out in pasture, not just for their well being, but also for the eco friendly benefits your horse can have on soil out in rotated fields. Their waste is very beneficial for the health of our top soil and grassy fields help to make barns carbon neutral or negative. Not to mention, so many places cannot get hay locally so they must ship in, but a few acres of grass can surely relieve the pocket book while minimizing shipping pollution and helping eliminate carbon. If that simply isn’t an option at your barn, encourage your barn to collect and compost (in house or export it) to be used as fertilizer in the future, rather than it siting in landfills.
- Concentrate. I don’t know about you, but I always have an empty spray bottle somewhere. Instead of going and buying a fresh bottle each time I need a new spray, I buy concentrate to dilute in my old bottle, thus cutting back on my single use plastic. I will also use soap bars and home made disinfectants as a way to maintain my horses without having to buy more and more manufactured products.
- Jar it up. If you have to set up supplements for an extended period of time or weekly feeding for your barn’s convenience, get mason jars, collect old sauce/soup jars, or invest in silicone gallon bags for you to reuse. No need for plastic bags that get grimy, gross, or rip.
- Stitch, don’t ditch. Wash, don’t toss. Horse blankets are a tough item to keep around when horses are rough on them. Instead of buying a new blanket when a buckle breaks or a rip seems to ruin validity in use, get it repaired. Instead of scrubbing your blankets and wasting tons of water with a hose when the blanket is unrecognizably dirty, trust your local blanket repairer that has an industrial washer to save water. Most local blanket repair shops will take awesome care of your investment for you. Don’t have a local blanket repairer/washer? Maybe there is a niche you can fill right in front of you!
- BONUS TIP! Buy intentionally. Buy second hand tack and apparel from local tack stores or online shops that ship carbon neutral. This helps to slow manufacturing for factories whom produce dirty fashion and give garments/tack new life. And if you need something new, spend intentionally by saving up for durable products that will last you many years. And support brands making strides to be more eco friendly by using sustainable materials!
- Kait Cruz, Owner, The HNH Sanctuary
Why Kait loves BOTORI
I love BOTORI for their intentional design and motivation to do their best as a company. Their apparel is well constructed, durable and long lasting. Not to mention, they are intentionally inclusive and eco-friendly for the benefit and promotion of our entire equestrian community. Plus, who doesn’t love a pair of leggings that feel like pjs, or breeches that feel like leggings?
Kait owns a 501C3 nonprofit horse and eventual livestock rescue, The HNH Sanctuary. She is dedicated to encouraging and giving resources on how to live a more ethical life, in and out of the saddle. Through her nonprofit, coaching, and blog, Kait hopes to support individuals and communities to make choices that positively shift our society.
Follow her on IG: @thehnhsanctuaryAnd check out the sanctuary website: thehnhsanctuary.org