Teen Forum Moderator
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: South East Texas
I agree, IMO it isn't fair to put the older gelding in the situation that the young mare is in, although it isn't good for the young one to be there either. Is there a reason you wouldn't want to take on the gelding? At 21, chances are he has already proven himself, and he seems sturdy and in great condition. Of course he likely won't be ridable in a few years and if you want to do strenuous riding, I can understand not wanting him!
The little mare is chancy. Sometimes the rescues turn out great, sometimes not so much. I poured thousands of dollars into the rehab of a filly with some very serious problems (1 on body scale, very sick, terrible feet) but she turned around to be very nice almost a year later and she is about to go to a new home to be used as an all-around trail type horse when she is a bit older. I got lucky. Under all of her emanciation, stunting (she was 12.2hh when I got her, is now 14hh) and illness she had a fundamentally well conformed body. Her legs were all kinds of wonky from long hooves and we really didn't think she'd be ridable, but they smoothed out nicely. BUT. We have no way of knowing if her past situation affected her bone density/formation, or if she has any internal problems that we can't see yet. It really is a gamble. I've heard of many other rescue situations that ended with less than perfect horses. Poor legs, on and off lameness, sudden illness and death from internal problems...its a 50/50 chance. I don't say that to discourage you, but to make you aware. And since you've had so much pain to endure lately, it might be in YOUR best interest to just fine a healthy, well trained, happy horse to love on for a while. It really is up to you.
What I see in this little mare though, is that she is wormy and under that coat she is probably a good 100 lbs underweight. Winter coats can be VERY deceiving. Her hooves are badly underrun which is probably why she acts ouchy when she walks. My filly was on and off lame for a few months while we were correcting her hooves, and abscessed multiple times before we achieved mostly healthy hooves. You would probably be looking at that sort of this with this filly. Or it could be something more serious that is causing the shaking. Like I said, its a gample. Her extremely upright pasterns worry me a bit, and I'm trying to decide whether or not her hooves are playing into that and if they can change, but at her age her leg growth is done or nearly done so what you see is what you get. Even if the cosmetic structure of her bones can change, the way that they have grown is the way that they have grown. They might be weak. They might not be.
She does not look like a bad horse to me. She looks like a young horse who has not had proper care for a long time. Can she look better? Absolutely. Can she be ridable? Most likely. The question is how much time and money are you willing to put into her knowing that its possible that she might not be, and what will you do with her if she can't be ridden to the extent that you would like? I very much like her short back because it is optimal for heavier weight, but her legs are the most important factor here, I think.
Everyone in your life is meant to
be in your journey, but not all of
them are meant to stay till the end.