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Should you OWN a horse?

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  • Is it difficult to go on vacation when you own horses
  • Are you willing to sacrifice financially for your horse

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    09-11-2010, 05:54 PM
  #141
Foal
Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by luvmyperch    
I started when I was 10 years old... Drove my parents crazy for years until one day, I picked up the phone book and called stables to make an appt for a lesson! For nearly two years after that, I spent every single day at the barn taking lessons, working 8 hrs a day on weekends, summer camps, clinics, etc. I leased a horse for a year and THEN my trainer told my parents I was ready to buy a horse. I read everything I could get my hands on even before I started taking lessons to learn about riding and their care. I worked as a groom / stable hand for ten years after that in big & small barns, even racing barns. I just get extremely frustrated when people don't devote the time and energy into learning and understanding horses before taking one into their care.

Hey, horses make all of us broke! I haven't bought myself new clothes for work in longer than I can remember. But, if Danny needs ANYTHING, we find a way to pay for it. That's our responsibility as his owners...

That sounds EXACTLY like me:) except i'm still in the working 8 hours a day on the weekends part. But I love it and I completely agree with your posts.
     
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    09-13-2010, 07:00 AM
  #142
Green Broke
I think I posted earlier in this thread to say this, but don't want to go find it. I just read MN Tigerstripes post and wanted to reiterate my point.

Having a horse or horses is not about the amount of money you have to throw around whenever. It is about being willing to sacrifice things to find the money if the need should arise. It's about developing that relationship with your vet, so that if something comes up and it is a bad situation, you have proven yourself trustworthy enough to make payments. I currently have about $1000 of vet bills that I am paying off slowly. My vet knows I'm good for it and therefore will still come to my horses if something happens.

And it isn't always about money either. Its also about being willing to admit when you have no idea what is going on, and having the humility to ask someone for help or to do the research so that you can make yourself a better horse owner.

I don't believe anyone is ever an expert at everything horse related. There is too much to know and opinions are always different. Having horses is one sure fire way to teach yourself that you know NOTHING in the grand scheme of things. And that applies to everyone. Even those with decades of experience around horses are always learning new things.
     
    09-13-2010, 11:24 AM
  #143
Weanling
Maybe the question then is not "Should you OWN a horse?" rather it is "Are you OWNED by your horse?" I am...I can't even relax on vacation without calling home umpteen hundred times to make sure the girls are ok. I am herdbound completely. I feel nervous being away from them. Their well being consumes me totally.
     
    09-13-2010, 06:10 PM
  #144
Weanling
Quote:
Originally Posted by HowClever    
I think I posted earlier in this thread to say this, but don't want to go find it. I just read MN Tigerstripes post and wanted to reiterate my point.

Having a horse or horses is not about the amount of money you have to throw around whenever. It is about being willing to sacrifice things to find the money if the need should arise. It's about developing that relationship with your vet, so that if something comes up and it is a bad situation, you have proven yourself trustworthy enough to make payments. I currently have about $1000 of vet bills that I am paying off slowly. My vet knows I'm good for it and therefore will still come to my horses if something happens.

And it isn't always about money either. Its also about being willing to admit when you have no idea what is going on, and having the humility to ask someone for help or to do the research so that you can make yourself a better horse owner.

I don't believe anyone is ever an expert at everything horse related. There is too much to know and opinions are always different. Having horses is one sure fire way to teach yourself that you know NOTHING in the grand scheme of things. And that applies to everyone. Even those with decades of experience around horses are always learning new things.
Excellent post.

I've known people who subsisted on PB&J for a week in order to pay off vet bills.
We are not well-off but make enough money to comfortably care for two horses. No more. Yes, sacrifices can be made (for instance...no take-out or movies, driving long distances, etc..) but it also sucks to constantly stress over money/time which you don't have to care for your animals. Part of being a responsible horse owner also means knowing your limits.

As far as devoting all your energy toward one horse, I agree with this as well, if that's all you have time for. I know someone who has a very sweet and lovely teenager Quarab. When her old mare died, she stopped coming to the barn to mess with "Ginger". Ginger just sits now. Cute little horse with a lot of potential. Her owner works terribly long hours, however.
And yet...she recently adopted a 3/yo Morgan filly. Completely green, only halters.

Upon hearing this I was
You work terrible hours...you don't even bother working with Ginger as it is and now you've gone and got a youngster??! And the huge kicker is -- this barn (my old barn) doesn't have ANY space for exercise. It is a backyard operation and is past full capacity as it is. She won't have any room to work one-on-one with the filly.

This just strikes me as crazy. Why go get a baby who needs a ton of training when you don't even have time for your already well-trained (But quickly deteriorating in the manners department due to sitting for so long) other horse? I feel bad for Ginger, it's like her owner has basically abandoned her. IMHO she has a responsibility to Ginger to give her the time and attention she deserves, not let her rot in some paddock all because she desires a flashy young project. Either that or sell her, which isn't going to happen.
     
    09-14-2010, 04:54 AM
  #145
Started
Well I have 2 horses and a miniature horse and I agree with you luvmyperch
However, I have never had an official lesson in my life, but this doesnt have anything to do with costs, it has everything to do with the fact that I live too far out of town to get to any trainers, and I live to far out for them to willingly come to me. I have friends that help me when they come out for the weekend and I get videos of myself riding so I can see where I need to improve, and my friends, and a trainer I know has seen them and can help me from there but unfortunately untill my parents win lotto and buy a house in town I won't be getting "professional" lessons anytime soon.
Everything else I have with my horse though, shots, farrier, spare money for "what can go wrong will go wrong" etc etc. means I can't spend to much on things other than horses but so what? I love my horses and would rather be able to afford them than be buying all stupid stuff I will use/wear once and never again. Atleast with a saddle and bridle etc you know you'll use them hundreds of times right :)
     
    09-17-2010, 02:31 PM
  #146
Weanling
I can not financially have a horse(I am in high school still and involved with other activities outside of work so I can't work enough either). My parents wont pay for anything horse related, so I stay in my lesson barn where I will hopefully get enough experiance to start part-leasing a horse when I have the time and money.
     
    09-17-2010, 06:49 PM
  #147
Green Broke
EmilyandNikki, that is a very realistic and practical view/plan. I wasn't able to have a horse when a teenager, lived in town and simply didn't have the financial means. I rode every week at a stable. Got to the point the SO would put me on some of his more "challenging" mounts. I learned a lot.

Years later, after schooling and marrying, I leased a couple of horses and kept them at my property. I had a 12 year old son and a 3 year old daughter. Realized I didn't have much time to ride, what with all the chores, and decided not to renew the lease at the end of the year.

When my daughter was older, I believe 6 or 7, I started her in lessons. Was at that barn for 5 or 6 years and volunteered 5 to 6 days a week.

At the ripe age of 41, finally built a barn and purchased my horse (they threw in her last foal) and have been enjoying horse ownership and everything that goes with it.

Timing is everything. Sometimes we tend to rush things and put ourselves in a bind. But , you will know when the time is right.

Best of luck to you, and soak up all you can in horse care.
     
    09-17-2010, 08:39 PM
  #148
Foal
Glad I grew up wild with horses, never needed to call a vet or give vaccines, bale my own hay so the only expense I have is the fuel I use to bale and salt, what else does a horse need.
     
    09-19-2010, 10:41 AM
  #149
Weanling
Wow this post has been amazing. Not only is it absolutely true, but many things have been brought up. I have never had any money, and will most likely never see a huge house or fancy car, but really that doesn't bother me. Though I would like a nice truck/trailer. =)

I like most, have not gone shopping in a long while and when I do I'm often weighing it with "horse" purchases. I often self vet, but I have learned over the years when/where to call the vet, and certain things I just don't hesitate. I've worked hard to build up a good reputation with my vet so that when the time comes and I need a payment plan, they'll be happy to work with me. Do I seek out a trainer... most of the time no. But when I hit road blocks or think I need a different opinion, I'm happy to take it. And though I don't post a lot, I do read a lot and there have been things in my 20yrs of riding that I haven't thought of before said on here.

I'm always happy to help out a new person to the world of horses. I'll offer my knowledge, opinion, heck even my tack if they are truly into it and want to learn.

As it was said, Owning a horse is a lifestyle, and it is one of perpetual learning as well. You can never know too much, and this forum is a great place to share/find knowledge. Sadly you can't make people accept the help they were looking for in the first place, though hitting them with a flamethrower would be entertaining.
     
    09-21-2010, 09:13 PM
  #150
Foal
Bravo. Thanks for posting - very true and much needed ^_^
     

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