10 year old asking for a saddle for her birthday - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 05:49 PM Thread Starter
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10 year old asking for a saddle for her birthday

My daughter is asking for a saddle for her 10 th birthday. We don't have a horse. She rides different horses, but mostly either a tall TB or a big Appaloosa pony. Here's my question: should I even bother getting her a saddle? I was sort of convinced it would be a great thing to have. Also, we went to Dover today, and of course they tried to sell us a $1500 saddle. We would like a nice starter saddle with all the accessories for about $500. That's about all I'm willing to pay. We saw a Camelot which seemed nice enough, but mostly I've heard they are not great. Does it matter that much? I know y'all are going to say YES but she is only 10 and this probably wouldn't be her last saddle if she continues riding. We are thinking of getting her a horse at 12 if she continues with high interest. Thanks!
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post #2 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 05:56 PM
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I would ask her instructor to help you find a nice used saddle. You get much better quality for your dollars that way.
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post #3 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 05:58 PM
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I personally would not buy a saddle until she is riding only one horse. There is no way to buy a saddle that will fit every horse and I would think that you don't want to limit her experiences at this point. When she has her own horse (own or lease), that is the time to buy a saddle.

Why not put a chunk of the money aside and give her a card saying that the funds are going to the "buy a horse" piggy bank. Then buy her something less expensive for her birthday. You could add to the piggy bank at Christmas and next birthday as well. She could put in her own money to help out and then the interest level will stay higher hopefully.
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post #4 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 06:03 PM
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How about a bridle instead?
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post #5 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 06:41 PM
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That's tough because she'll outgrow any saddle soon...
We bought our kid a cheap blinged out $200 pony saddle (western) to get her started. Its synthetic, well padded, and requires 0 maintenance. She's used it on ponys and now on her horse.

It fits just about anything and with her minuscule 58 pounds and a thick pad the horses have been fine. (My kid is 8, a string bean, with long legs)

I understand her wanting her own, what is she using now? I know English saddles are bit different, is she using the same saddle for all horses?

I like the idea of saving up for her own horse! Great life lesson.
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post #6 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 06:50 PM
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Don't get a saddle until you have a lease horse or your own horse.. she'll outgrow it and it probably may not fit the horse she does and up working with.

I like the piggy bank idea, or she could get her own grooming set, her own helmet, her own show clothes (for when she's ready to show) or braiding set so she can learn to braid manes and tails.... just my ideas.
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post #7 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 07:06 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Skyseternalangel View Post
Don't get a saddle until you have a lease horse or your own horse.. she'll outgrow it and it probably may not fit the horse she does and up working with.

I like the piggy bank idea, or she could get her own grooming set, her own helmet, her own show clothes (for when she's ready to show) or braiding set so she can learn to braid manes and tails.... just my ideas.
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post #8 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 07:09 PM
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I'm going to be the opposing voice here. You don't say what discipline your daughter is riding; but is she's riding hunt seat, event or dressage, I would consider a decent quality used saddle. Unless the place she's taking lessons has extraordinary school horse tack, it will be really tough to progress past a certain level without her own saddle that fits *her.*. Riding schools tend to assign saddles to horses by the fit to the horse. (The schoolie wears the saddle 15 - 20 hours per week, an individual kid only sits in it an hour or two.) That can leave an odd sized kid fighting the tack trying to learn.

Talk to her instructor about his or her recommendations. (This idea may have come from the instructor.) Then consider finding a saddle that will fit one of the animals she rides well and can be made to fit the other reasonably with extra pads, etc.,

At ten, she's going to outgrow a junior saddle (15 - 15 1/2) right about the time she's ready for a horse, so at that time you can worry abut getting something that's fits both her and future horse.

The good news is a good junior saddle doesn't lose value, you will probably sell it or trade it for exactly what you have in it. The better news is that it may *really* help her riding.

Do talk to the instructor and find out if he/she supports the idea and then go from there.
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post #9 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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I guess she is thinking a saddle because some if the other girls have their own saddle. Her instructor says there are some benefits to having her own saddle and that she noticed that when her favorite saddle is taken She gets annoyed. So she definitely has a favorite saddle there. She has a grooming kit, helmet, clothes, her dad made her a tack box... etc. All she needs is the horse and saddle! It does seem like a ton of cash to spend. It made me a little nervous when I brought my little kid to get fitted for a saddle. I guess you all are right. We will probably wait unless he get a primo deal on something used. I guess though, I thought the saddle is mostly for the rider not the horse. I never thought of it being such a specialized thing for the horse. I'm still learning!
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post #10 of 22 Old 05-12-2013, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
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Maura, I actually did talk ti her instructor and she said its a good idea if you can afford it. She said its like a pair of shoes and that she will break it on to her. The dover people recommended a 16 so she will have room to grow. She is a tallish skinnyish 9 year old. She rides English.
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