Horse Show Essentials


If you’re primarily traveling to one-day shows, you don’t need to schlep around every horse item you own. You just need to assemble a few necessities and keep them handy in a tote tray, crate or gym bag. Here are a dozen show essentials:

  • A water bucket and extra feed (usually hay in a net) for your horse.
  • Copies of important paperwork, such as registration papers for breed and halter classes, a negative Coggins test, and your membership cards for sponsoring riding clubs so you can accrue points for ribbons won.
  • Nutritious snacks so you don’t have to rely on questionable offerings from the concession stand.
  • Any extra tack that you just might need, such as a standing martingale or a pair of spurs.
  • A leather hole punch—you never know when you might need to make a minor adjustment to your belt, stirrup leathers or bridle cheekpieces.
  • A longeline, so you’re not forced into riding Smarty Jones in your equitation class.
  • Basic grooming tools: a comb, a couple of brushes and a hoof pick.
  • Grooming accessories that add a winning look to your horse: hoof oil or dressing, coat polish and at least one clean, soft rub rag to wipe away dust and slobber.
  • A small, zippered cosmetic bag filled with your own hair care kit (consider a hairnet, barrettes and bobby pins).
  • Rather than trying to catch a glimpse of yourself in your truck’s chrome bumper, bring along a small handheld mirror.
  • Horse and human first-aid items, stored in a small plastic carrying case, will give you peace of mind.
  • Coverup clothes to wear over your show outfit between classes and, even better, to wear on the trip home.

Download a full horse show checklist >>

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