Age a horse is considered 'old' - The Horse Forum
 
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post #1 of 10 Old 10-04-2009, 04:17 AM Thread Starter
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Age a horse is considered 'old'

Ive seen alot on the net lately of people asking about horses that are just 12..13..14 etc and if they can still do this and that with them, but considering many horses live untill about 30, thats not even halfway through their life! It kinda makes me think my 15 yr old is a bit of a no-hoper and i should be treating him as i would an aged horse. He surely isnt the energetic horse with the brain of a 3 yr old he was a few years ago but still..he's not THAT old right? I got a bit paranoid yesterday when i saw some grey comming on his flank...

I know every horse is different, but generally when do you think a horse is 'old' or 'aged'?
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post #2 of 10 Old 10-04-2009, 04:31 AM
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I generally think of 16 as moving into the aged catagory but that's just me.

"If you can't see a thoroughbred has talent, you're probably too dumb to ride one anyway."
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post #3 of 10 Old 10-04-2009, 06:04 AM
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Ninja
What age is old for a horse??

There is no age barrier - there is a fitness barrier.
If the horse has been well looked after over his lifetime then 20years is easily feasible if not longer.
But you should not over work an older horse and again that is a matter of discretion.

If you are riding a horse regularly, then you are the best person to answer the question. You should know the creature.
Does he sweat up? do he breath hard? Is he getting slow? Does he go fast and then suddenly go slow.
Does he pick is feet up?
Does he want to go out?

Has he got the spring of life in him? - (don't ask me to describe that)

And ask your vet

But if he is chronically lame. If he has some major ailment
then again ask your vet about the quality of his life.

But if you are just worried about gossip - then close your ears and ask your horse whether what they are saying is true or not. If he gives you a strange look and nudges you for a biscuit then you have your answer.

Be advised that most 15 year old horse are still in their prime and they will look after you in a way that no stripling ever will.

B G
You'll be asking at what age should humans give up riding next.
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post #4 of 10 Old 10-04-2009, 06:10 AM Thread Starter
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My horse has a few more years in him yet, and he has only really just learnt to gallop (never been asked before in his life) Just wondering what everyone considered aged...
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post #5 of 10 Old 10-04-2009, 07:56 AM
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I agree with Barry. Many Olympic horses are well into their teens. There are, however, things that need to be taken into consideration when a horse get to be 15+. He will need some additional care for his joints, as an example.

When I lived in PA, I gave a 20 year old horse (that I loved dearly) to a theraputic riding center. At age 32, he is still giving lessons and "competing" in events at their shows. 20, for him, was not old.

I prefer to buy a horse between the ages of 10 and 15. All the sillyness is gone and you know what you have.

I'm not arguing with you, I'm just explaining why I'm right.

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post #6 of 10 Old 10-04-2009, 09:14 AM
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It depends on the horse, I think. Sprout is 12 and I don't consider him old at all. G is 17 and for him, that's not old. He can still run like a maniac and jump and everything. (: We have a horse down in VA, Gollywog, and he is around 25-30. For him, that's not old. He will still take off and can still jump beautifully and still loves to be ridden. He isn't jumped much, because they want to be careful with him, but he sure can do it. (: Calvin is around 30ish. He is semi-retired, and while some times he'll still go pretty fast, he definately knows how old he is.

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post #7 of 10 Old 10-06-2009, 06:45 AM
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Depends on the horse.

My mare is 20 yrs old, and was jumping 75 cm today, no worries. She's also just come back into work after time off and is loving it! She's done some PC, and is off to PC camp tomorrow with a friend :) Noone believes she's 20 (I have a pic if your interested)

Saying that, there was a 21 yr old standing next to my mare who I would classify as 'old'. He looked run down, didn't move so well, and wasn't enjoying it. I call my mare 'old girl' as a pet name .. but for me, it depends on what I want the horse to do .. 20 isn't old IMO

Age is a feeling, not a number ;)

Heck, my mare can outrun my 5 yr old ottb! LOL
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post #8 of 10 Old 10-06-2009, 08:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jessa View Post
Depends on the horse.

My mare is 20 yrs old, and was jumping 75 cm today, no worries. She's also just come back into work after time off and is loving it! She's done some PC, and is off to PC camp tomorrow with a friend :) Noone believes she's 20 (I have a pic if your interested)

Saying that, there was a 21 yr old standing next to my mare who I would classify as 'old'. He looked run down, didn't move so well, and wasn't enjoying it. I call my mare 'old girl' as a pet name .. but for me, it depends on what I want the horse to do .. 20 isn't old IMO

Age is a feeling, not a number ;)

Heck, my mare can outrun my 5 yr old ottb! LOL
Jessa, enjoyed reading your post! My girl T is also 20 and going strong and steady. Even with her loss of sight in her right eye, and partial sight loss in her left, she is calm and steady on the trail. Many younger horses tuck into her as she is very confident and calm and they benefit from her energy and example. These older horses that are fit and sound are such treasures for their rider as well as wonderful teachers for the youngsters around them. Many happy years to you and your girl!

The only thing I've had to do for T, and this has only been for the last 2 years, is add to her diet of hay and hay stretcher is a senior feed. She also goes barefoot and I have noticed that her hoof is not growing as quickly as in the past, so I will need to add hoof boots for some of the trails we ride on so as not to take her hoof down too far. But it's all good. You do need to keep your older horse exercised so as not to lose condition as it does take a little longer to bring them back into condition. However, she is also pasture kept during the day so she does move around quite a bit keeping herself fairly fit (just watch her dash around the pasture for the sheer joy of it).

Like other riders have posted, I wouldn't pass by a horse in their teens as a prospect.
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post #9 of 10 Old 10-06-2009, 01:26 PM
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This is a very interesting thread!! I'm getting a 19 year old horse in the spring. I was worried about getting an older horse but she has been really well taken care of and the owner thinks she has many more years. She's very well trained and I think she will be perfect. I'm going to see her in a couple weeks and I'll surely post pictures!! I'd be interested in seeing a picture of your horse Jessa if you are able to put it up. That is neat your mare is still doing jumping at 20!
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post #10 of 10 Old 10-06-2009, 02:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barry Godden View Post
Ninja
What age is old for a horse??

There is no age barrier - there is a fitness barrier.
If the horse has been well looked after over his lifetime then 20years is easily feasible if not longer.
But you should not over work an older horse and again that is a matter of discretion.

If you are riding a horse regularly, then you are the best person to answer the question. You should know the creature.
Does he sweat up? do he breath hard? Is he getting slow? Does he go fast and then suddenly go slow.
Does he pick is feet up?
Does he want to go out?

Has he got the spring of life in him? - (don't ask me to describe that)

And ask your vet

But if he is chronically lame. If he has some major ailment
then again ask your vet about the quality of his life.

But if you are just worried about gossip - then close your ears and ask your horse whether what they are saying is true or not. If he gives you a strange look and nudges you for a biscuit then you have your answer.

Be advised that most 15 year old horse are still in their prime and they will look after you in a way that no stripling ever will.

B G
You'll be asking at what age should humans give up riding next.
This.

Very well put.

"A musician must make music, an artist must paint, a poet must write, if he is ultimately to be at peace with himself.
What a man can be, he must be.
" Abraham Maslow, 1968
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