November 28, 2021

Life in an active stable for the sport horse

In our number 598, still on newsstands, we offer you a dossier on the outdoor life of our sport horses. Discover immediately a small extract from this file with the testimony of Morgane Pokoik, manager of Haras de Vézu-Horse Feel Eventing in Yvelines, an active stable dedicated to sport horses. In France, there are 40 to 50 active stables throughout the country. If we are still far from our German neighbors, fond of this type of accommodation, the practice nevertheless seems to be gaining ground and is proving interesting for the accommodation of sport horses.

Why did you choose to embark on the creation of an active stable for sport horses?

The idea comes from personal experience. We could not find pensions which corresponded to what we expected from the welfare of the horse. Either we had structures with great facilities to prepare our competition horses but the impossibility of them being outside in a group, or we had this accommodation outside but there were no longer the quality facilities we expected to train horses for the high level. With this in mind, we tried to settle down. As soon as we learned about the active team 5 years ago, we looked into the question, we went to Austria and Germany to see how it was going. Why only sport horses in our stable, because the idea is to give owners the opportunity to take their horses out of their stalls, to offer them a type of accommodation in freedom, in a group, but keeping the practical aspect that we like in a stable: having the horse easily available, clean feet, a stable to groom … the comfort of the stable with a horse lifestyle. We started the work a year ago, we hope to be able to open in early 2022.

Morgane Pokoik © Aurélie Pierre-Justin

What are the advantages for you of this lifestyle?

They live in groups and they have social interactions, I think that is the best quality of life that a horse can offer. There is also the fact that they are outdoors all the time, so they have a preserved locomotor function and keep some musculature. They are immediately available when they are mounted because they work all the time and are already warmed up naturally. We have much less tendon problems and digestive pathologies. The advantage of the automaton is that each horse can be supplemented on a case-by-case basis in an individualized manner.

Your goals with your pension?

Once everything is operational we intend to come out in competition. Bastien, my partner, will try to reach the highest possible level and I will be back on the pony circuit in valuation. Otherwise, we would really like to take the horses out of the boxes and combine sport with well-being. It requires a very big questioning of his habits, to go ahead of prejudices such as injuries or lack of energy to go to competitions. This is wrong, a horse will not be less brilliant. We have to look at ethology in the scientific sense. We think we know the horse by heart when we often have erroneous, very anthropomorphic interpretations. In the end, we interact with the horse without really knowing it.

If you want to know more, go to the kiosks!