As many of you know, I am all about reusing things and saving a little money when possible. I would much rather spend money on new bits for my horse and new boots for myself, than on silly simple fixes around the farm. Though the warm weather might be gone, we can still find a few uses for all those old pool noodles. Don’t store them away with your bathing suits and floaties! You won’t believe all the things we can do with something that barely costs $1…
- Slice the noodle lengthwise and cut it down to the size of your saddle racks, so you can slip it over the harsh metal bars and keep your saddles from getting that dreaded dent.
- Attach four pool noodles to the outside of a large tarp, then pour water into the center of the tarp. Utilize this “creek simulation” to practice stepping in and crossing water with your horse in a safe and shallow environment.
- Craft “stick horses” out of old noodles for the young cowpokes at the barn to race around on while their moms go out on a nice trail ride. This can be done by bending one end over itself and affixing it with duct tape. Bailing twine can also be attached if your little one isn’t ready to go bridleless!
- Cut the noodle lengthwise and use it to hide electrical wires along the edges of walls. You can put the wires right into the noodle (as long as they don’t get warm) and then place it along the edge of the floor, where it meets the wall.
- Attach one end to the spout of a water hydrant and then place the opposite end in a nearby water trough. This allows for you to clean troughs and fill them without having to get out your wrench and fiddle with moving a hose.
- Cut noodles in half and place them into boots so that they stand up straight when not being worn.
- Desensitizing, desensitizing, desensitizing.
- Use pool noodles to create obstacles and other distractions that will act as amazing desensitizers for even the most bombproof horses.
- Noodles can be hung from eves for horses to walk through.
- They can be placed across jump standards to be walked or hopped over.
- You can even tape several noodles into a circle for your horse to step through (make sure you make it large enough)!
- And my personal favorite… Duct tape old flimsy noodles to the tops of large cones. Then tape plastic bags to the opposite ends of the noodles. A little gust of wind and these crazy “noodle monsters” will come to life.
This just goes to show that you should always think twice before tossing old things aside. There is almost always a way to repurpose items, even if it’s just for desensitization. All horses can benefit from this method of training in one way or another. There’s really nothing better than a horse that you can trust no matter what comes along.