Horses come in all sorts of colors, shades, and combinations. There are blue roans, red roans, blacks, paints, polka dot , and even yellow horses. But when you hear about ” green ” horses, it has nothing to do with the color. So what’s a green horse. Well, that’s one of those questions that if you ask 10 different people, you’ll get 10 different answers. You see a ” green ” horse is one of those words that does have a meaning, it just isn’t used the same way by people in the horse industry. Sort of like the term ” vehicle ” can be anything from a moped to a dump truck.
For some ” green ” means the horse is ” broke ” and most likely can be ridden by a lot of people including new riders provided nothing unexpected happens. The horse will behave and ride nicely, but occasionally spook or jump at something. Others say a horse is ” green ” just as soon as someone steps down from the first ride without the horse bucking. If you hear some guy say, ” Oh, he’s a little green “, make sure you know how to ride before you climb aboard. It generally means the horse isn’t suited for a novice rider and probably not ready for a lot of experienced ones.
We have seen some pretty bad wrecks over the years when inexperienced riders end up on ” green ” horses. Something like a rabbit jumps out of the brush and everything gets exciting. The situation escalates from what could be a great training scenario for the horse into a hospital trip for the rider. Identical circumstances with a skilled rider end up with the horse learning from the experience and no harm to anyone.
So when you hear someone say a horse is green, find out how they are using the term and make sure you don’t wind up learning it the hard way!