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Advice: friend too heavy for horse

This is a discussion on Advice: friend too heavy for horse within the Horse Riding forums, part of the Riding Horses category

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        02-21-2013, 11:20 AM
    I'm voting with those who say that you should talk to her rather than emailing, but I can totally understand why it is difficult to do.

    If you decide to email, or even if you talk to her I would make sure that I included something like:

    So at the moment I am really sorry to say that you are just to heavy for her to be able to carry you without hurting herself.I really really want you to be able to enjoy riding her again though, and if I can help in anyway in your journey to a lighter fitter you, then please let me know, I so want you to be able to enjoy riding.
    Speed Racer and CCH like this.
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        02-21-2013, 11:44 AM
    Agreed, GH. Be as kind as possible. Not that you wouldn't Tessa, but it never hurts to have others give you suggestions.
        02-21-2013, 11:48 AM
    Ahhh you guys are right. I should be telling her in person. Reading back I supposed I am dodging the issue a bit, I just feel so awful saying "you can't ride my horse because you're so heavy she may injure herself." I suck at stuff like this. I feel like suggesting that I help her lose weight implies that I don't think she's trying hard enough. I only know what she tells me, but she does seem to be trying, she runs every day, she says she eats healthy.
    I know no one is going to sympathize with me on this one, but what makes it so much worse is that I don't even kind of have a weight issue, I'm honestly in really good shape. I'm 5'6" and 130 lbs. My diet consists of vegetables, lean protein, fruit and whole grains, and I work horses all day long. So, I don't know if anyone understands that, but it sucks telling someone they have that issue when I can't even say something like "yeah, I could lose a few pounds too, lets work on it together" no, it's not about me at all, I just feel like its even more awkward because of that.
        02-21-2013, 11:54 AM
    Tessa, it isn't that she is to big for your horse, but that your horse isn't fit for her to be riding. It's a subtle difference, between the two, but you are so not attacking her because of her size, it is just the case of a bad match.

    There are horses out there she CAN ride, I was 300 pounds not so long ago, and I rode, but I have to face facts that some of my horses I am currently to heavy for, and one I am fine for, and a couple are kind of border line, I'm taking one of those to an assessment on Sunday, to get an unbiased and truthful opinion on our suitability for each other now and ongoing.
    boots and Tessa7707 like this.
        02-21-2013, 11:59 AM
    Good point, ok. Awesome, thank you golden horse.
        02-21-2013, 12:04 PM
    It would be hypocritical if you yourself weighed close to what she did and were telling her she couldn't ride, but since you're already at optimal weight I don't see why you think you don't have the right to say something.

    Yes, she's working on losing weight and that's really great, but until she gets down to a weight that your horse can comfortably carry, then she needs to stay off the mare.

    Don't let her try and guilt you into it, either. If she has you making excuses, you're losing the battle. Just tell her why you've made the decision, and that you've done it in the best interests of the horse. If she loves horses at all, she'll understand. Nobody who truly has an animal's best interests at heart would continue to insist that they're fine to ride if they're not.
        02-21-2013, 12:10 PM
    I've been following this with advice: MAKE IT ALL ABOUT THE HORSE!!! I'm not much for twisting the truth to serve my purpose, but in this case to save someone from being hurt I'd say 'upon veterinary and chiro recommendations the horse shouldn't be carrying X amount of weight''s kind of a round about way of getting the message across without being too direct.......
    Tessa7707 likes this.
        02-21-2013, 12:15 PM
    Green Broke
    I totally agree with Muppet, I brought that up earlier. It doesn't have to be about her, make it about the horse!
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    Tessa7707 likes this.
        02-21-2013, 12:36 PM
    Green Broke
    Some people really don't know any better. A friend of mine who is almost 300 pounds remarked one day that she wanted to ride my 11 hh welsh pony. I just stared at her with a deer in the headlights look. I felt bad riding him when I was 140 pounds, and I wouldn't think about riding him now when I weigh 170 pounds and told her so. If I'm not even comfortable riding my pony, no way is someone almost twice my weight riding my pony.

    I know it's a tough situation to be in. You're between a rock and a hard place right now. But just be honest about it. Don't hide behind an email or anything like that. Let her know in person. "For her safety, I don't think it's wise of you to ride her. She's not in good enough condition or health to support someone your size. Once both of you get to more healthier points in your lives, you may be capable of riding again. But until then, we can just spoil her on the ground." Don't say, "Sorry, you're never riding her again." Let her know there will be a possibility in the future of riding again and that in itself can be motivation for her.
    Tessa7707 likes this.
        02-21-2013, 06:23 PM
    Originally Posted by Corporal    
    If she cannot mount without a mounting block, just tell her that to ride, she must mount from the ground. That should eliminate your awkward conversation with her.
    I bought my big guy--16'3hh, now OVER 1,400 lbs--for my DH. He was 300 lbs, but has now lost a lot, still he is 6'5" tall and looks great on his horse.
    Trail riding stables now have scales. If the guest tops a certain weight they are turned away.
    Actually, mounting blocks SHOULD be used not matter how much you weigh. Pulling yourself up on the horse (and hence pulling the saddle toward you) is not great for a horse's back. I only weight 128 lbs and I always use a mounting block....much better for a horse's back.
    Golden Horse likes this.

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