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‘I am not a deer’: 10 safety strategies for hunting season

‘Tis the season to be safe–especially if you’re furry and live outside.

Top: trulygraphics.com

A Shetland pony named Ladybug was mistaken for a deer and shot last week in Vermont. Ladybug, a lesson pony for the short-stirrup crew, was shot through the heart by a 14-year-old boy, according to the Rutland Herald.

Department of Fish and Wildlife officials are investigating the event, which appears to be a tragic accident. The boy was doing nearly everything right, Fish and Wildlife’s Col. David LeCours told the paper. “One cardinal rule,” however, was broken. “You need to be 110 percent sure of your target before pulling the trigger,” he said. Here are 10 good ways (and one very bad one) for increasing visibility and making your horse look less like a deer during hunting season:

1. LED tail lights! They’re for real–check it out here.

A less advisable DIY version:

white lights

[horsegroomingsupplies.com]

2. These deter hunters AND pesky November flies

bonnet

[crestridgesaddlery]

orange fly mask

[wildcowboy]

3. It’s a bridle! No, it’s a halter! But it’s definitely not a deer.

orange bridle

[horseforum]

 4. Boots. Because deer don’t wear boots…

orange bells

[classicequine]

hvs boots

[high visibility sportswear]

5. …or butt halters.

butt halter

[homesteadingtoday]

 6. Use only if you live outside a tiger hunting zone.

tiger pad

[equestrianhomeaccessories]

7. Tuck your horse into a cozy, safe blankey.

blanket

[dontshootme]

8. Don’t limit yourself to blaze orange. Everything below is available at High Visibility Sportwear.

hvs yellow

hvs pink

9. Take matters into your own hands. This glow in the dark paint recharges when exposed to light and is ideal for “sporting equipment” like your pony! Or at least your pony’s blanket (it can be used on fabric).

paint

[michaels]

10. Bring your horses in at night.

listo kitchen

[swansonpetersonproductions]

Wrong photo. Sorry!

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 11. Whatever you do, don’t leave your horse out like this:

horse antlers

[backinthesaddle]

Go Riding.

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