METF Equine Learning Resources

METF's mission includes education in trail riding, horse care, trail management and other equine-related subjects. The learning resources cited below are from reliable educators and publications.  We focus on online resources that are available to all, any time and anywhere.  We also try to include resources that are available for free or at very low cost.  We expect to expand our selection of resources to better meet the needs of midwest trail riders. We are happy to consider your suggestions of subject matter and/or potential resources; email us here

Rider Safety

The University of Kentucky offers a series of free online publications in its rider safety awareness program, Saddle Up Safely. These 20-page publications are attractively produced, with full color pictures and anecdotes from riders who experienced some scary moments. Here are the titles with links to the publications that may be downloaded as PDF files:

Barn Safety

Horseback Riding Safety 

Safety in the Pasture

Trailering Safely

Travel to a New Environment 

Safe Return to Riding

Horse-Related Injury

Horse-Transmitted Diseases  

Know Your Horse Trailer

Purdue Cooperative Extension Service offers an substantial publication on horse trailer safety with the goal of preventing injuries, even fatalities, to horses being transported and to people. It approaches the trailer as a "rig" that comprises a complex system.  It discusses hitches, chains, brakes, tires, and all the related mechanical aspects of trailers. This 56-page publication features color pictures. You can download the PDF file here

Online Short Courses

On their Horse Portal, Canada's University of Guelph offers several equine-related online courses of one or two weeks duration at very low cost.  Their Equine Business 101 course is offered continuously and can be joined at any time, as is their Horse Behavior and Safety for Youth (Ages 13-17).  Other two-week courses are offered at scheduled times; they are led by instructors and feature videos and interactive activities with other students. Courses include Gut Health and Colic Prevention, Introduction to Forage, Equine First Aid, The Senior Horse, and others. Consult Guelph's website for upcoming offerings.

The Golden Rules of Trail Riding

METF board member Sara Anderson assembled study guide on etiquette for new trail riders. It includes rules for trail riding, for camping, and for leading a group of riders. It is suitable as a discussion guide for 4-H and other horse enthusiasts meetings.  You can see The Golden Rules of Trail Riding here.

Horse Fencing

University of Georgia Extension offers a 16-page guide to horse fencing. It covers how to select the right fencing for your needs, various fencing materials, gates, and construction guidelines. Lots of pictures and diagrams. You can download the PDF file here.