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A lot of us talk about our horses all the time, and many times, our dogs come up. I have mentioned mine here and there, but I figured it was about time to devote a whole post to her. Hold on to your hats people, because there are A LOT of pictures.

Hannah (AKA Hannah Montana) is an 8 year old, Blue Heeler mix that the husband rescued from the shelter as a puppy.


Do not let that face fool you. Apparently, this girl was… not a good puppy. How bad was she? Well, apparently she refused to be house trained… or crate trained. She thought the best use of a crate was to contain all of your poop and pee, so you can roll in it. Fun stuff.

How did Matt house train her? He threw her out with the goats for a while. Somehow this worked, and Hannah has turned into a really wonderful dog. When she met my grandmother, she was so excited that she ran up to my grandma… She must have immediately realized that her usual exhuberant greeting wouldn’t be appropriate, and she sat down in front of my grandma. Her whole body was shaking with excitement, but she didn’t dare jump up or bump into her. She just waited patiently for her pets.

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She has met May a few times, and used to come to my barn in NJ regularly. My trainer at the time brought her two dogs almost everyday, but they were older, female, and (mostly) calmer. They got along great with Hannah, and Matt was able to come with me when we brought her. While May is great with dogs and Hannah is mostly good with horses, she doesn’t really appreciate me riding. She is very concerned for my safety and will whine as I ride past, especially at the canter.


The first barn I was at in KY didn’t allow outside dogs, although she came by once when I had to make an early morning run to treat May’s eye before we drove to Kansas.

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Road trip time! #kansasbound #love4oleary

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She has not been to the new barn.ย Although the new barn is dog friendly, Hannah is… a wimp. How much of a wimp? She has been attacked at least twice since I have known her. Why? Because if a dog comes bounding towards her, wanting to play, she will cower and roll over and tell the world that she is a wimp. Soooo she gets attacked.

Let’s face it, she was the star of our engagement pics.

While the dogs at the new barn are very sweet, I think it just would be too much for Hannah. Last night, there were 6 or 7 dogs at the barn. They ranged from a big chow mix from next door to a small pug and from basically puppies to much older dogs. Just too overwhelming for poor Hannah, who really likes being an only dog with her own yard.

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Even Hannah is excited to finally see spring! #dogsofinstagram

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What about you? Do you have a dog (or other non-horse pet), and do they make it to the barn?

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  1. the_everything_pony

    Choco definitely isn’t fond of meeting other dogs, either. She’s a people dog, and while she loves sniffing where other dogs have been, she’s more of a “hi, bye” type haha. Put her with people and she’ll have them all feeding her in no time lol. She’s certainly perfected the art of begging! lol

    1. Emily

      Yes! Hannah is definitely a “people” dog. If you are sitting on the couch, she will just rest her head on the edge of the cushion until she gets pets. Completely insatiable hahaha

  2. Amanda

    I have a boxer/Lab/??? cross who has two speeds 0 mph and 150 mph. She also has no recall to speak of. None. Sooooooo she is not a barn dog! I took her once, when she was about 9 months old, because I had to stop by and do something quick. I left her in the car. When I got back, she had puked everywhere. Every-where. Every inch of the driver’s seat, steering wheel, door, center console, floor…in the car I had bought two weeks ago. She has not been to the barn since.

    1. Emily

      OMG! and thats a big dog with, I’m sure, a LOT of puke capacity in her. >.<

      Hannah has a ridiculously good recall, but it took me a while to get her to recall to me (almost) as well as she recalls to Matt. Not sure if I trust it to work while I am on horseback.

  3. martidoll123

    My dogs maybe get walked out to the barn once in awhile ON LEASHES but I don’t trust Ollie (he got tangled up with Tate once remember) but I have had dogs that were excellent barn dogs and went with me. I had a lab who was great and a JRT who was actually good too. I would not like that many dogs around though. Our neighbor (property right next to us) has a boxer who chases the horses (He does not let her loose without him around and he yells at her and she stops but I have told him if Remus or Tate gets her it is not my fault). Remus and Tate both are like donkeys, snake neck and ears back at them. UGH just stresses me out. If your dog does not behave it should not go to the barn (And same with leaving Hannah home since she is a wuss ๐Ÿ™‚ Good dog owner you are ๐Ÿ˜‰ Ollie will try to fight anything too. Soo nope…:)

    1. Emily

      Hahahaha Hannah would be a perfect barn dog if it was just her, people, and horses. Alas – that is not reality.

      1. martidoll123

        so you need a barn at home ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. t

    No dog right now, but we have a house cat who thinks he’s a dog ๐Ÿ™‚ He loves stuff from the barn and anything that smells horsey, he builds nests from old saddle pads. He walks on a leash and goes for car rides, so I’m sometimes tempted to take him to the barn to meet the horses, but not sure I’m ready to expose my newly found crazy cat lady self to the world yet, lol

    1. Emily

      Hahahaha I would also be worried that your house cat will decide he wants to catch all the mice! Nothing quite like cat-presents at the door.

  5. nadsnovik

    OMG Siri is equally as submissive and gets beat up all the time too. We’re working on it, but it’s just kinda who she is. She comes to the barn with me almost every day as there are not a lot of dogs there. She is petrified of Sarah’s dachshunds and rolls over when they run up to her. (Insert eye roll). Hannah is SO cute and shelter dogs are the BEST

    1. Emily

      Glad Hannah isn’t the only one! She has lived with a lot of dogs before, but just seems to prefer people and peace and quiet haha

  6. Liz


    Both of my dogs used to frequent the barn when it was more rural. Now, while still rural, the setup is a lot closer to a 2-lane highway, so to ease my anxiety I don’t take the dogs anymore. Next year, when the horses move again, the dogs will be able to frequent the barn and join in on the horse time. I can’t wait because it’s a great way for them to burn energy while I enjoy horse time!

    1. Emily

      Yes! When we didn’t have a yard, having access to a dog-friendly barn was so helpful. Now with a big yard, she much prefers to smell the smells by herself haha

  7. roamingridersite

    Love her scruffy face ๐Ÿ™‚ I have two pups – a boykin spaniel and bernese mtn dog and since the horses are at home they mingle. In general though I really don’t like mixing dogs and horses so never took them to the barn when we boarded.

  8. Carly

    I brought my dogs to the barn all the time when I lived in PA, but my barn now sits on a really busy road and I don’t trust the dumb black one not to wander into oncoming traffic. They get to pop in for a quick visit occasionally, but they mostly stay at home. Also the dumb black one wandered into an electric fence once and now thinks horses shoot lightning from their bodies and refuses to come near them. So it’s not very fun for her. Being dumb is hard.

  9. Boss Mare Eventing

    Love it! I have 4 dogs, three are heelers and one is a heeler/border collie/aussie cross. Heelers are the best dogs out there ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Emily

      Hannah is my first experience with the breed. They are just SO SMART and really want to please their people.

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