No matter where you’re headed with your horse – into the show ring, out on the ranch, or out to the trails – having the right set of Western tack will make your job easier. The good news is that there are tons of items available for you to choose from; you’re sure to find the right tack for you and your horse.
Selecting the right Western saddle for the task is especially important. Horse saddles create a bridge between you and your horse, and if a saddle is a poor fit, then it can create serious issues for your horse’s back. Whether you’re looking for a lightweight, compact barrel saddle or need a trail saddle designed with your comfort in mind, Western saddles are specially made for particular purposes like roping, reining, or trail riding. Buying the right saddle for the task at hand means that both you and your horse can perform to the best of your abilities.
Just as important as your saddle, your saddle pads and saddle blankets help to protect your horse’s back while preventing sweat from wearing away at the leather of your saddle. Western saddle pads come in countless shapes, sizes, and materials. Perhaps you’re looking for a pad with extra shock absorption to keep your horse comfortable during a long day of ranch work, or maybe you need a pad built up in particular areas to compensate for poor muscling or a saddle that isn’t quite a perfect fit. When it comes to showing, don’t forget to look for a pad which complements your horse’s coat and will match the rest of your show outfit.
Your Western headstall helps to complete the deal. Headstalls come in one-eared and browband varieties, allowing you to add your distinctive style to your tack. Choosing a bit for the headstall will depend on your horse’s sensitivity and your needs for the bit. Some bits feature flashy engraving, making them ideal choices for parades or the show ring.
Above all else, quality should be a priority when you buy your Western tack. Good, quality tack, from cinches to western spurs, is more likely to fit your horse correctly, to perform well, and to last for years to come, making your investment in your tack a good one.