Preventing the theft of horses and tack by Alexandra Gubbins-6647
Stolen horses and tack is a real problem
Every horse rider is aware of the problem of criminals who prey on the equestrian industry. Theft of both horses and horse tack is sadly all too common and most riders have either personally experienced one or the other or know of someone that has.
All thefts are shocking but it is particularly distressing when a horse is stolen. Equestrians usually have a very close bond with their horse and when a theft occurs, it is incredibly upsetting to not know where the horse is or what is going to happen to it.
It is also devastating when bridles, saddles or other horse riding equipment is taken not only because of the expense but also because of the time that it takes to build up a set of tack that suits both you and your horse.
The following advice centers around two different methods of stopping thieves from stealing any of your property. These are reducing the opportunity for theft and making the theft not seem worthwhile.
Reducing theft opportunities
The first way to prevent someone from stealing from you is to minimize their chances of striking with relatively little possibility of getting caught.
It can be quite easy for thieves to gain access to a property but there are only restricted options for them to get a horse back out. Hinged gates that are kept padlocked, robust fencing and thick hedges can make it very hard for thieves to remove your horse from its stable or field. It is worth bearing in mind that thieves can easily cut through wire fencing so post and rail may offer better protection.
Some thieves will prey on horses that are left unattended for regular intervals each day. If possible, try to create an unpredictable routine of visiting your horse outside of usual feeding times so that the thieves cannot be sure of the times when nobody will be around. For example, visit your horse at lunchtime or arrange for a neighbor to check that all is well at some point during the day.
Opportunist thieves will happily prey on any saddles, bridles and other types of horse tack that are left out, even if someone is on the premises at the time. The best way to protect this property is by keeping it under lock and key if you are going to let it out of your sight. Install sturdy locks on your tack room and make sure that the building is properly secured.
Even if you have locked your tack room, someone wandering past the window may catch a glimpse of your expensive leather horse tack collection. It would only take a few moments for a thief to smash the window, climb in and nab your equipment. If you are planning on building a new tack room or you are about to move into a new property, make sure you choose a building that has as few windows as possible. If you have an existing tack room, install iron bars at the windows to prevent this kind of access.
Making the theft seem not worthwhile
Thieves will be much less likely to strike if they think it will be difficult to sell on the horse or riding equipment, as this pretty much negates the reason for stealing. If you can make a potential thief discount your property as a target by carrying out just a few simple steps, you could avoid becoming a victim of crime and the heartbreak that can go with it if a horse is stolen.
Freeze marking is one of the simplest things you can do to identify your horse. It is simple, quick and permanent, and its visible nature will deter thieves from stealing your horse. This is because they know it can be used to show unequivocally that it does not belong to them and it is stolen. Also, if your horse is stolen and recovered by police, they can use this distinctive mark to reunite you with him or her.
Many horse riders are now getting their animals microchipped. While this is not a visible deterrent, some prefer this kind of identification instead of or in addition to the white branding of freeze marking. If the horse is stolen and then scanned at some point, the information contained within the microchip will facilitate the tracing of the owner.
On a similar note, marking all of your horse tack with your telephone number or postcode is an excellent way of putting criminals off and ensuring its safe return should it be recovered as stolen property. It is also possible to get your saddle stamped with a special identification code. Many police forces run tack marking campaigns or services so it is well worth checking with your local force on this point.
Investing in basic technology around your stables and yard can also be a very good deterrent to thieves. It can be very useful to fit CCTV, a burglar alarm and lights, as well as having large notices stating as such.
Preventing the theft of horses and tack Article Summary:
Some simple advice on the things equestrians can do to deter thieves from stealing their horses, as well as their horse tack.
Preventing the theft of horses and tack by Alexandra Gubbins of Dogwood London suppliers of leather saddles, bridles and equestrian clothing.
Article Source: ArticleCo.com
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Stolen Horse International, Inc. ~ NetPosse.com Resource information for preventing theft and finding stolen/lost horses. Listing of current stolen horses online.
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