If you are a fan of Heartland then you are going to like this article. Because, although Heartland is still going strong, I thought that it was time to share some other shows about horses that might just be up your alley if you’re a fan of either horses in general or Heartland.
Some of the TV series that are featured on this list are older, some newer. There are both sitcoms and dramas on this list. But horses and people’s love for them play a big part in all of these horse TV shows.
So without further ado, here are 7 TV shows about horses that you will love if you like CBC’s Heartland.
Wildfire (2005 – 2008)
Probably one of the shows that is the series most like Heartland is Wildfire. Yet, at the same time in some aspects Wildfire is nothing like Canada’s longest-running family drama.
Wildfire centers on Kris Frillo, a young woman who is fresh out of a teen correctional facility and starting a new life working at the Raintree ranch. She shares a special connection with Wildfire, a horse she rescues from the slaughterhouse. And soon enough she is working with Wildfire to turn him into a champion racehorse. Along the way we see Kris learning the trials and tribulations of being a jockey. And balancing her romantic life and other friendships with working at the ranch and helping save it from financial ruin.
Although Wildfire has that aspect of a family-run ranch and a troubled teen ending up there, instead of jumping and rodeo, this series heavily focus on the horse racing side of things. On top of that, on Wildfire you will see more of the younger generation, since the show’s leads are Kris, Matt, and Junior. However, the show still features solid family dynamics and a lot of horses, which are some of Heartland’s strong suits as well. So if you love Heartland but wished that the show centered a bit more on Amy, Ty, Georgie, and their generation, then Wildfire will definitely be for you.
Where to watch Wildfire:
Caitlin’s Way (2000 – 2002)
When it comes to the fish out of water trope, another TV series that uses it and uses it smartly is Caitlin’s Way.
This show, which aired on Nickelodeon from 2000 to 2002, tells the tale of Caitlin Seeger, a street-smart teenage girl, who after getting arrested is sent to her mother’s cousin’s horse ranch in Montana. And during the three seasons that the show was on the air, we see her not only hone her photography skills in hopes to one day doing it as her carrier and figure out herself and her relationship with those around her. But also get close to Bandit, a wild horse that she rescues from wranglers, and with who she forms a bond thanks to Bandit saving Caitlin from getting attacked by a wolf.
If you loved Ty’s early storylines on Heartland. Or just like these types of teen dramas, then you should take a peek at Caitlin’s Way as well. You might be surprised at how much you love this series. And fun fact, Danny O’Donoghue from The Scrip shows up on season 3 of Caitlin’s Way as Caitlin’s older foster brother. So if you love The Scrip and their music, you might want to stick around until the third season of this series.
Rough Diamond (2007)
Another show that depicts the horse racing world, but that fundamentally and visually is very different from Wildfire is Rough Diamond.
This series depicts the relationship between Aidan Doherty, a disgraced racehorse trainer, and Jonah Price, his teenage son that he never knew existed. After Jonah enters Aidan’s life with a young colt and argument not to sell Aidan’s late father’s stables to his rich neighbor, Aidan’s life is turned upside down. And together the two of them try to rebuild Aidan’s good name and their lives as father and son.
Despite this BBC One’s series having only six episodes, it is definitely worth your time. Filmed in Ireland, the show offers beautiful scenery, heartfelt stories and a look at the horse racing business form a different perspective. On top of that, the short length means that you can binge-watch this show in a day, and fully enjoy everything it has to offer without wasting days of just watching Rough Diamond. What can be better than that?
Where to watch Rough Diamond:
A more teen-friendly option for a horse TV show is Ride, another Canadian TV series set in one of the most elite equestrian boarding schools in England called Covington Academy.
Ride tells the story of Kit Bridges, whose father takes a job as a riding instructor at the boarding, relocating them from America all the way to England. And over the course of this Nicolodian show, we see Kit overcome her fears for horses and bond with the other students of the prestigious school.
Similarly to Rough Dimond, Ride is shot on location in Ireland, which means that Ride as well will offer some stunning scenery shots. But unlike the previous show, this equestrian TV show is all about a mix of high school and horseback riding. So if you like teen dramas, are into horses or both, which you probably are if you clicked on this article, then go ahead and give Ride a shot.
Where to watch Ride:
Free Rein (2017 – 2019)
Before we move over to horse riding TV shows that are a bit older and not from this century, we also have to mention Netflix’s Free Rein.
This Netflix series follows Zoe, a 15-year-old LA resident as she spends her summer at her grandfather’s house on an island off the coast of England. While there she forms an undeniable bond with a wild horse named Raven. And this new connection helps Zoe find new friends and resolve issues that she has been facing all her life.
By now you might be seeing a trend among these shows. But I promise each of these TV shows albeit similar to Heartland differ story-wise. So if you are a fan of one these horse TV series, then I would recommend you check out all of them. Because from each one of these shows you will be able to take away something completely different.
Where to watch Free Rein:
The Adventures of the Black Stallion (1990 – 1993)
If all of the previously mentioned shows aired at the very start or during the 21st century, these last two shows are a bit older. Yet, nonetheless, they are cult-classic horse TV shows that will feed your love for the equestrian world nicely.
First up we got The Adventures of the Black Stallion. This TV show is about Alec Ramsay, an up-and-coming horse racer, who after his father’s death has to help his mother run their ranch called Hopeful Farm. While also realizing his dreams of becoming a professional horse racer alongside his horse The Black and trainer Henry.
Although The Adventures of the Black Stallion does mostly focus on the horse racing circuit, there also are that family rach and underdog aspects of it, which have become a staple when it comes to TV shows about horses. Therefore, if you want to see one of the shows that began this TV trope, check out The Adventures of the Black Stallion.
Where to watch The Adventures of the Black Stallion:
Mister Ed (1958 – 1966)
And last but not least we have Mister Ed, probably one of the most famous horse TV show among all of them.
This series, that aired during the first half of the 1960s, centers on an architect Wilbur Post and his wife Carol as they move to a new house and discover that the previous owner had felt a horse behind in the house’s barn. But the horse isn’t just your typical stallion. It turns out that the horse, whose name is Mister Ed, is able to talk, but only Wilbur. Which leads the architect on many amusing adventures.
Although Mister Ed is a black and white television show and is more than half a century old, the show is enjoyable and fun all the same. And thanks to the recognizable speak of Mr. Ed, voiced by Allan “Rocky” Lane, the shows theme song and the story in general, Mister Ed truly is an iconic TV show that any horse lover should see at least once.