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Trafalgar Square Books and our online storefront www.HorseandRiderBooks.com remains devoted to providing horse lovers everywhere with the very best in riding and horsemanship education. As a thank you for visiting us as you further your equestrian skills and knowledge, please use this coupon on your next book or DVD purchase:

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A modern-day challenge it is not—in fact, odds are it has existed as long as there has been the interactive equation of human-and-horse.

What do you do when your one true love truly divides her or his loyalties between two? That is, between you and a four-legged paramour with hay-scented breath and a tendency toward gaseousness?

Rule #1, perhaps to the dismay of many freshly entrapped in the web of human-human-equine devotion, is: Never attempt to come between a horseman or woman and his or her horse—regardless of the holiday.

In other words, to demand a choice this coming Valentine’s Day ala “It’s me or the horse!” practically bangs the nail in your heart-shaped coffin.

Oh yes, you may argue the horse requires sacrifice of a far more frequent and significant nature. But be warned: That will only drive your lover further from your arms (straight into a certain warm-and-hairy embrace, to be exact).

So how to romance the horse lover? How to shower affection on the object of your desire who so boldly shares his or her affections with another? Here are a few tips from those of us at Trafalgar Square Books who assure you that if you’re more than willing to “give,” the “release” will be well worth the wait.

 

5 Tips for Romancing the Horse Lover

 DON’T wrinkle or hold your nose, or make a face, when entering your horse lover’s car or truck.

Extra Cupid Points: This Valentine’s Day, vacuum and clean the interior of the vehicle but DO NOT throw away any mysterious bits of leather or metal. Gather unidentifiable items into a shallow plastic garment bin with a cover and LEAVE IT IN THE AUTOMOBILE—your Valentine will appreciate the attempt at organization, even if it doesn’t last (but he or she will never forgive you if a slobber strap or replacement billet has gone missing when it is needed).

 

2  DO offer to stop by the barn and “just say hi” to you-know-who, but respect your Valentine’s need for “horse space and time”—that is, quiet time, away from it all, with only a four-legged partner to talk to. All of us need a way to decompress and clarify what’s important in life.

Extra Cupid Points: This Valentine’s Day, buy your special someone chocolates, and grab a supersize bag of carrots at the grocery store, while you’re at it. Tie a red ribbon around the top and voila! You’re on your way toward winning two hearts over!

 

3  DON’T roll your eyes at, laugh at, or otherwise mock the strange titles, headlines, and topic names of interest in horse-related books and magazines your horse lover regularly reads. Believe it or not, “The Lowdown on Sheath and Udder Cleaning” contains knowledge essential to Senor Forelock’s health and comfort, and “Manure Maintenance Misconceptions” may yield the secret to stifling the stench so often attached to “the boots in the hall.”

Extra Cupid Points: Buy a subscription to the equestrian magazine that caters to your Valentine’s favorite breed or discipline of choice, or (even better!) give her/him a Trafalgar Square Books Gift Certificate. There are many (to you, perhaps, befuddling) types of equestrian-related publications out there, and they all provide the kind of “continuing education” your love will happily pursue, while blowing kisses your way from the back of you-know-who.

 

4  DO volunteer to drive the rig, hold the horse, carry the hay, man the gate, fix the fence, build the shed, shovel the…well, you get the picture.

Extra Cupid Points: Take care of the evening feed that cold night when he/she is going to be home late from work. You can love your horse, and STILL be thankful to come right inside a warm house and a glass of wine instead of feeling your way to the barn in the dark and breaking 2 inches of ice off frozen water buckets.

 

5  DON’T micromanage your horse lover’s finances. Trust me, there’s little about it you’ll like, but it is commonly accepted by most in the equine industry at the outset that owning and riding horses is a financially devastating set of circumstances. If you’re devoted to your true love, and he/she’s devoted to her horse, the hours will be long and many to earn Handsome’s board and tuition while keeping a roof over your own heads.

Extra Cupid Points: A gift certificate to a local tack shop supports a small business AND puts a smile on your Valentine’s face. Go ahead, throw some more money out the stall window.

 

Love each other, love your horses. Here’s to planning and having a very Happy Valentine’s Day.

Trafalgar Square Books is the leading publisher of horse books and DVDs. CLICK HERE to shop our online bookstore, where shipping in the US is FREE.

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Take the TSB Quiz to figure out a great gift for the horse lover on YOUR list!

Take the TSB Quiz to figure out a great gift for the horse lover on YOUR list!

 

If you’ve been uninspired, stumped, lost in the virtual shopping aisles, and wandering the for-real malls and stores without purpose or reason, there’s no need to panic…there’s still time to score great gifts for the horse lovers in your life—and if you order before midnight tomorrow, Tuesday, December 17, 2013, you can still get FREE SHIPPING in the US in time for Christmas!

So who is still on your list? What is it about horses and riding that they love most? Take this quick quiz to get a few topnotch book and DVD recommendations from the TSB staff…we’ve got something just right for horse lovers of every age, area of interest, and ability.

 

Click image to shop now!

Click image above to shop now!

 

THE TSB GREAT GIFTS FOR HORSE LOVERS QUIZ

 

1  The horse lover on my list loves to…

a  Play games and have fun on the ground.

Trail ride, go “horse camping,” and hack out.

c  Compete regularly and earn awards and prizes.

d  Train horses and improve their trust in their handler, way of going, and overall performance.

 

If you answered “a” check out:

THE HORSE AGILITY HANDBOOK

HORSE AGILITY THE DVD

TRICK TRAINING FOR HORSES

 

If you answered “b” we recommend:

RIDING BARRANCA

KNOW YOU, KNOW YOUR HORSE

BETTER THAN BOMBPROOF

 

If you answered “c” how about:

PRESSURE PROOF YOUR RIDING

HOW GOOD RIDERS GET GOOD

IT’S NOT JUST ABOUT THE RIBBONS

 

If you answered “d” go with:

7 CLINICS WITH BUCK BRANNAMAN DVD SERIES

CLINTON ANDERSON’S PHILOSOPHY

THE MODERN HORSEMAN’S COUNTDOWN TO BROKE

 

2  The horse lover on my list is totally into:

Classical riding and the well-being of the dressage horse.

Groundwork and schooling in-hand.

c  Jumping jumping jumping.

d  Hoots, hollers, and high speeds.

 

If you answered “a” check out:

DRESSAGE WITH MIND, BODY & SOUL

THE ALCHEMY OF LIGHTNESS

RIDDEN

THE JOY OF DRESSAGE DVDS

 

If you answered “b” how about:

HORSE TRAINING IN-HAND

CONNECT WITH YOUR HORSE FROM THE GROUND UP

DANCING WITH HORSES DVD

 

If you answered “c” we recommend:

THE AMERICAN HUNTER/JUMPER FORWARD RIDING SYSTEM DVD SERIES

JUMP COURSE DESIGN MANUAL

MODERN EVENTING WITH PHILLIP DUTTON

 

If you answered “d” go with:

TEAM ROPING 101

REINING ESSENTIALS

ROOKIE REINER

 

3 The horse lover on my list prefers:

a  Watching DVDs.

Using practical, step by step instructions to learn a new skill.

c  Reading for pleasure.

 

If you answered “a” check out:

GEORGE MORRIS: TEACHING AND TRAINING THE AMERICAN WAY DVD

DRESSAGE MOVEMENTS REVEALED DVD

WESTERN SADDLES DVD

 

If you answered “b” how about:

WHERE DOES MY HORSE HURT?

DRESSAGE FOR THE NOT-SO-PERFECT HORSE

BEYOND THE TRACK

 

If you answered “c” we recommend:

THE SMART WOMAN’S GUIDE TO MIDLIFE HORSES

CROWN PRINCE

CROWN PRINCE CHALLENGED

 

Still need ideas? Trafalgar Square is the leading publisher of equestrian books and DVDs, and we have hundreds of titles in our online store–so go ahead and CLICK HERE to find something just right for the horse lover on your list, just in time for the holiday!

 

Have fun and Happy Holidays from the TSB Staff!

Photo by Donna DeMari from RIDING BARRANCA by Laura Chester.

Photo by Donna DeMari from RIDING BARRANCA by Laura Chester.

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Gotta lady friend (or fella) in your life who is just as infatuated with horses as you are with her (or him)? Here are five super-easy ways to let the horse lover in your life know you REALLY care, without spending oodles on champagne and diamonds (and don’t mention the fact that you spend enough on horses each year to buy a dozen-Valentine’s-Days’-worth of bubbly and glitter)….

1  Do the Chores

That’s right. Slip on your muckity-muck boots, and slip out the door before lover is out of bed or before she gets home from work. Clean the stalls (if you live with a horse owner, we know you know how!), sweep the aisle, empty and refill the water buckets, feed and hay….sure, they aren’t YOUR horses, and maybe you’re a little afraid or a little resentful, but TRUST US. This demonstration of your devotion will score you  MAJOR POINTS in the “love of my life” department.

2  Give the Green Light for Extra Barn Time

Give your love a big kiss and a verbal “It’s a-okay if you spend this weekend at the barn.” One of the biggest strains on relationships with horses in the middle is the amount of time riding and caring for them demands. This can leave boyfriend/girlfriend, husband/wife in a cold lonely bed early in the morning and eating TV dinners on the couch late evenings. Needless to say, this can cause resentment on one end and stress on the other….so let your horse-crazy partner know that this weekend you want her to take her sweet time, clean as much tack, talk as much horse, and breathe as much hay dust as her little heart desires. Your “he’s a keeper” stock will skyrocket!

3  Stay in and Snuggle with a Bottle of Wine and a Horsey-Flick

Yep. Horsey people usually dig horsey movies, and there are a number of them that a non-horsey individual shouldn’t find TOO cringe-worthy. In fact, if you’re an action-adventure type, a few of them might even get your blood racing–if only for a minute. A few oldies but goodies that shouldn’t be too tortuous for even the most jaded of viewers:

Something to Talk About (1995, Julia Roberts, Robert Duvall, Dennis Quaid)

Seabiscuit (2003, Jeff Bridges, Chris Cooper)

Hidalgo (2004, Viggo Mortensen–yes, THAT Viggo Mortensen)

The Horse Whisperer (1998, Robert Redford, Kristin Scott Thomas)

4  Give a Show Season I.O.U.

If your honey is a competitor, don’t tell me you haven’t been drugged and dragged to one event or another in years’ past, usually grumbling most of the way. Why not prepare yourself now for two or three “full on” appearances this show season–slip an I.O.U. in your partner’s V-Day card that says you’re all hers (or his) for three events, and will pack, drive, haul, hold, stand, wait, run, lift, carry, prompt, encourage, and congratulate to the best of your lovin’ heart’s ability. You’ve got a few months to get ready for the experience, so go for it.

5  Go for a Romantic Ride

Depending on your geographical location, a romantic ride this time of year may or may not involve sunsets–in fact, it may involve several layers of clothing and very cold toes. But if you have EVER been in the saddle and can manage even the barest of minimums on a good-ol’ “boyfriend horse” (you know, the 15-year-old Quarter Horse gelding that’s seen it all–and seen YOU ALL in the saddle), then tell your main squeeze that you’d like nothing better than to spend an hour riding with her or him. Sure, your muscles will be sore, but such an expression of devotions is sure to earn you a back massage later…

And remember, just because your lover is a horse lover, doesn’t mean she doesn’t have enough love for YOU, too!

(BTW, a great Valentine’s Day read is WOMEN ARE FROM VENUS AND SO ARE THEIR HORSES–check out this review on GREAT BOOKS FOR HORSE LOVERS and order it today from the TSB bookstore www.HorseandRiderBooks.com.)

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