Safety Requirements

At ITI GGS Miniature Horses and Cart safety is our main priority, and for many years we have been proud of how we can bring children and horses together and all stay safe. 

Our first safety considerations are the Health and Safety Act 1992 and the Animal Welfare Act 1999.  We must comply with these regulations at all times and we have processes and procedures that maintain this to a high standard.

We provide a wide range of NZ Safety Standard riding helmets, that comply with the current standards.  We maintain our helmets to a high standard and also replace our helmets on a regular basis when required.  We ensure each child is fitted correctly before they hop on the horse.  We also correctly position each child's stirrups so that they have perfect balance and feel safe and secure in the saddle.  Correct stirrup length makes you stable in the saddle so you can properly focus on your ride and have fun.

Each horse handler is experienced with horses and is very consciencious about the safety of the children on the rides. They are correctly trained in the ITI GGS requirements and high standards we like to maintain.

We ask parents to properly supervise the children that are not riding or are waiting for a ride.  We provide someone who fits the hats properly and supervises the rest of the group waiting for their turn.  This makes the ease of changing riders flow and helps it to be an organised process that is pleasant for all involved. If we ask you to help with helmets you will be given correct training and standards, and the ride will not go ahead until the child's helmet is correctly fitted.

We ask that children of all ages respect our instructions, rules and requirements, as these keep everyone safe and happy.  

Children are still allowed to have fun and be noisy.

We have a Heath and Safety checklist we run through prior to your party where we all consider the hazards of each horse party and this includes considerations for our horses health and well-being under the Animal Welfare Act 1999, it brings our constant awareness to all hazards involved in each event and how we can minimise these dangers to keep everyone safe. This is a very comprehensive checklist and is carryed out in full during our set up time, but all staff on-site.  If you have come to us at our farm we have a checklist we complete prior to your arrival as well. 

If you come to our farm in Kaukapakapa either for lessons, party or an arranged visit  you will be required to sign into our property whether you are a regular riding lesson family or visiting us for the first time.  We keep a hazard list on site and at our sign in sheet bringing to your attention all the hazards our property holds and things you need to be aware of while you are visiting with us.

We ask prior to your horse party you sign a Health and Safety Agreement giving us permission to run our parties and making you aware of the safety considerations your party has.

Prior to us arriving we ask that the guests you have invited to ride with us have been asked to wear covered footwear as this is one of our biggest safety issues for children.  Party shoes are generally not covered and therefore not safe enough to be around the horses.  Putting this on your birthday or event invitation is a great way to pre-warm your families about protecting their children and bringing to their attention they must wear suitable footwear to have a ride.  We provide a wide range of gumboots but have a strict policy if you are not in the correct footwear you will not ride.  We also ask and require parents that want to accompany their little rider to wear covered protective footwear, again if the footwear is unsafe you will not be allowed within 3 metres or so of us and your child.  sneakers are acceptable however we still make you very aware they are not going to fully protect your feet and to stay away at all times from horses feet.

Health & Safety considerations both at our farm and at your place/venue;

  • No running around the horses
  • No walking around the back of the horses unless shown properly
  • Suitable covered footwear must be worn
  • All children riding must wear a fitted NZ Safety helmet
  • All children must respect the horse handlers and listen to their instructions
  • Horses and children can be unpredicatable please be mindful of both
  • Adults accompanying children on their ride must also have covered footwear
  • Please supervise your children at all times.
  • Please keep all children out of paddocks where horses are roaming free if you are visiting our farm.
  • Children need to be seated or stay in the shelter if they are in the same paddock as any untethered horse.
  • Children are not to crowd a tethered horse unless closely supervised.
  • Please make use of the playground and sandpit and trampoline as it is a great area for children to play safely outside of the horse riding areas, however it is your responsibility to still supervise your children in this area.
  • Please keep children’s noises to a minimum when working around the horses.
  • Please keep children not riding away from the horse/s supervised at all times (bring something for them to do) or ask them to sit with you.

Our Animal Welfare Act 1999 considerations at our place and your venue/party;

  • Children’s weight and height for each different size horse we provide, must be respected.
  • The weight of adults wanting to ride in the carriage must be considered and never exceeded.
  • Our horses ride ‘circuit’ must be segregated away from the public at public events and will be done with our electric tape and in an area away from public access ways and areas off to the side of main traffic areas, which will be provided by the event organiser and followed through by us. private events we ask parents and children to stay in a safe area and line up waiting for their turn, and no walking or playing in our ride area whatsoever for safety reasons.
  • Inclines when using the carriage (especially carrying any adults) will be a consideration when adults are riding in the carriage
  • If our horses need or are given rest, they must be left alone, and this must be respected, no public are to disturb them, and if this is at a big public event will be taped off.
  • If our horses seem distressed or unhappy, they will be removed from the area with a handler that will no longer be available to give rides.
  • Food and water will be provided by us if your event is longer than 1.5 hours in length
  • Horses are always hardfed prior to and after returning home from your event, especially if it is an event a few hours long.
  • Hay will be provided in events longer than 1-1.5 hours (although please be aware that not all our horses can eat hay)
  • Horses will be used with halters at galas for the safe tethering and quick changeover between horses.
  • Clip reins will be used where appropriate, so children do not pull on horses’ mouths
  • Carriage will not be used at galas unless specifically requested
  • Families lining up for rides will not be near tethered horses.
  • Tethered horses will be taped away from your visitors/public for us to comply with the Animal Welfare Act 1999 and the Health and safety Act 1992, at our discretion individuals will be allowed to approach/pat and interact with our horses.

Always be aware of the hazards when engaging with horses and ITI GGS Miniature Horses and Cart as it is in the category/classification of a ‘high risk’ activity.

  Terms and Conditions: 

Bookings: Summertime bookings require as much notice as possible to secure your ideal date.  

Unicorns and reindeers (dressing up): If you ask us to dress our horses up into a unicorn or reindeer we add an extra charge onto your horse party to cover our costume maintence and expenses.  This surchage on top of your party is $40.00

Deposits: We require a $100 deposit, this is a non-refundable deposit however it is transferrable to another booking, or visit if unforseen circumstances prevent us coming.  A great way to save disappointment if we have not prepared for your party you can book in a riding lesson with us instead. However this is non-refundable if any preparation has been done for your party, this is usually carried out 1-3 days prior to your party.

Securing your booking - Please Note: Your booking is not secure or confirmed if we have not received your deposit. If we have no deposit we will not be coming to your event. When you confirm we ask for your contact mobile (or two) on the day.  We ask you to must remain in contact with us if you have anything that we need to know before coming or on arrival

Riding Lessons: These can sometimes be intermittent during the summer as this is peak time for our horse parties.  Lessons will then be re-scheduled when we are available to run them. 

Cancellations: If you need to cancel your event due to your circumstances we need as much notice as possible, due to the preparation time for your party.

Rainy day surcharge: If your event  goes ahead and you have not cancelled  with rain pending or possible we are still more than happy to come, however it does cause us a lot of extra unneccesary work, our expensive equipment and gear gets wet we have a charge that covers our time for this and it is covered with our $30.00 extra charge that will be due after your party when you pay your final invoice or payment.  This is a non negotiable charge.  We can provide raincoats and we also provide a range of gumboots for each party, if you provide your own kids raincoats and boots and I do not have to use mine in the rain this surchage will come down to $20.00

In the event of the weather causing concern to you or us we will discuss what should happen with you.  We can make decisions right up to the last minute, however after our horses are prepped for your party your deposit is non-refundable, as this covers our time. Alternatively you may wish to postpone your party or organise a special visit to our farmlet instead.

Party preparation: Is factored into the price as it includes bathing the horses, preparing and inspecting the gear prior to each party.

Concerns or queries:   If you have any concerns after an event we have help we ask for your coutesy in contacting us to talk or email about your concern/s.  We put a lot of love and commitment into providing a very high standard service, however sometimes this can go wrong or we can have issues.  If this occurs we will recify any concerns/problems as soon as we hear about them, we pride ourselves in always getting high reviews.