Sending horses to the Amish to be trained how to drive?
 
 

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Sending horses to the Amish to be trained how to drive?

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  • Amish farming with horses

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    03-20-2014, 05:22 PM
  #1
Yearling
Sending horses to the Amish to be trained how to drive?

I was thinking about teaching my horses how to be driven, and how to be worked (plowing & mowing) only on a small scale. But I do not have the knowledge, skills or equipment. My grandfather knows how, but due to being in the military, he became allergic to the horses, and can't help me.
The Amish are local to us, and I was thinking about possibly sending one or two of my horses to them to be trained in driving and working.
Would this be a good idea?

I would be there as often as i'd be allowed, and i'll keep in mind how they treat their horses along with mine. Many are brought to local farms to do farrier work, and help some local farmers and barn raisin'. I know many are good horsemen. I'd like to hear some thoughts on this idea.
Thank you!!
     
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    03-20-2014, 05:28 PM
  #2
Green Broke
Depends on the people training your horse. Like any horse community, not all work with horses the same way.
I've heard of people even in my area taking young horses to the Amish to be trained to drive and any I know have come back with good results.
I would ask around your community to see if anyone has had experiences with horses trained by the particular individuals you are looking into ;)
     
    03-20-2014, 08:47 PM
  #3
Yearling
That's a great idea! I'll do that for sure!
     
    03-20-2014, 09:35 PM
  #4
Green Broke
Quote:
Originally Posted by Elizabeth Bowers    
I was thinking about teaching my horses how to be driven, and how to be worked (plowing & mowing) only on a small scale. But I do not have the knowledge, skills or equipment. My grandfather knows how, but due to being in the military, he became allergic to the horses, and can't help me.
The Amish are local to us, and I was thinking about possibly sending one or two of my horses to them to be trained in driving and working.
Would this be a good idea?

I would be there as often as i'd be allowed, and i'll keep in mind how they treat their horses along with mine. Many are brought to local farms to do farrier work, and help some local farmers and barn raisin'. I know many are good horsemen. I'd like to hear some thoughts on this idea.
Thank you!!
This idea would be a last resort for me
unless you had some VERY experienced people giving you a recommendation.
Will your horse go down the road and pull something? Yes

Will it will it learn how to bend properly? Probably not.
Will it learn 3 different trots? Doubt it.
Will it learn how to go go go? Yes it will.
Will it come back in good healthy condition????

Will it look as if it has lost its soul? Depends on how long they have it.

That said there are a few well respected Amish trainers but they a few and far between. You could not pay me to send a horse to the general Amish.
Now your area of the country could be different and every one has different standards.

I just saw a pair of horses that the Amish "trained" to drive. I would not call them trained. What they pulled was so heavy they could not run away.
They were so bitted up they would rear doing ground work and kick out at the slightest thing. They got so nervous just putting the harness on. One was cut up from an accident and they were very skinny. They needed completely started over.
     
    03-21-2014, 01:18 AM
  #5
Green Broke
I would get references. I would want to see horses they trained. You should be able to talk to the trainer and be able to see your horse when you want to ensure good health and treatment.
I have seen some Amish horses at the large auction up north from me, that were ridden and driven by kids, and did wonderful things while be driven, backing, side passing, etc.
All I remember about the amish that horses here is that they lived in Colorado.
smrobs and Elizabeth Bowers like this.
     
    03-21-2014, 01:30 AM
  #6
Showing
I agree with stevenson. Get references, look at previously trained horses. Not all horse trainers are created equal, even in the Amish community. There are always horror stories floating around (usually coming from New England) about how horses get mistreated and neglected and abused by Amish folk, but that's only one side of the story.

There is an Amish community that I'm very familiar with up in Kansas. My family is very good friends with a family there that specializes in making harness. We spent a lot of time up there when I was growing up and always went twice a year to a draft horse and mule sale where there were many Amish horses being sold and many more seen driving the streets and parking lots.

I can remember seeing very few horses that didn't look sleek and shiny and fit and well cared for. There were very few that weren't well trained. And there were none that were dangerous or had serious vices that made me wrinkle my nose in distaste...and I'm very picky about how I believe a horse should behave.
     
    03-21-2014, 07:39 AM
  #7
Weanling
I have grown up surrounded by Amish and have also watched several horses come back from training with them horribly traumatized. Most people around here leave their horses with them because it's cheap. These are people who want a quick fix and really don't care what is done to their horse.
From my experience I'd advise against using them. They consider horses to be appliances to be thrown away when they are used up and all the Amish I know who take horses from the "English" (as they call us) resorting to incredibly abusive training techniques.
They still believe in the old way of breaking a horse's spirit.
     
    03-21-2014, 08:39 AM
  #8
Weanling
I get really tired of the Amish bashing! I have lived and dealt with the Amish community for many years. My father grew up in a town where his family was the only English family.
Are there Amish who abuse horses? Yep. But it's far from the norm. And when not only your transportation but your livelihood(farming) depends on how healthy your horses are, it makes no sense to not treat them well.
The Amish are good people who live their religion EVERYDAY not just on Sundays like the majority of "Christians" I know.
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    03-21-2014, 08:41 AM
  #9
Weanling
I'm sorry for the rant OP, yes, get references and spend some time checking out the way they handle their horses and their facilities the way you would any other trainer you would employ.
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Elizabeth Bowers likes this.
     
    03-21-2014, 10:57 AM
  #10
Green Broke
I'd say check it out. They may be abusive Amish trainers out there, they there are many abusive "English" trainers out there as well. How many horror stories have we heard of this board about people sending their horse to be trained and they come back skinny and barely broke? I'd be just as skeptical as any trainer in out world as theirs.

I have a friend who always complain about how the Amish abuse their women, children and animals. I think is just a matter of opinion. They aren't the kind of people who are going to think horses should be trained to collect or bend, they aren't going to do a bazillion hours of ground work or desensitizing. They just expect the horse to do the job. They view them as working tool, not as pampered pet.
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Elizabeth Bowers likes this.
     

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