Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Burlington, North Carolina
Worried I am asking too much of him...
Okay to preface, I first became interested in endurance last year. At that time I went out and specifically purchased a horse for endurance - a mustang with wonderful gaits, that could go forever. Problem was, he was super lazy and it was exhausting just keeping him moving. I ended up leasing him to a wonderful lady who just trail rides him.
Meanwhile I had gotten very attached to my 13.2h grade pony gelding...and decided to try conditioning him for endurance. So I have been working with him for the past month, but I have my concerns about him as well. He has a great mind for endurance - he has lots of go, is quite brave and will try his heart out for you. However from the start he has always seemed to tire faster than my other horses and although he has definitely become more fit over time I worry that I am just asking too much of him. Some days he does better than others (though, as I said, he still seems to tire easily) But others, like tonight, after just a bit of trotting (maybe about 5 minutes?) and then about 10 minutes of walking, he was still panting. (I don't recall him breathing that hard ever before and it really had me worried). I am concerned that I am just asking too much of him. I am no featherweight to begin with, and I fear that even with lots of conditioning he just isn't cut out for endurance (or even limited distance rides). It breaks my heart because I am so bonded with him, but I don't want to hurt him.
I do have one other horse that I have always thought would be good for endurance. When we go trail riding, he is always the one that wants to keep going, even when all the other horses tire. He is a 16.2h Appendix QH...he WILL be 19 yrs old this year, but you would never know it from the way he acts (leaping and bucking in the pasture). At this point I am considering using him for endurance (for a few years anyway) as opposed to my pony. My husband does not want me getting any more horses and I don't want to push my pony...