First Horse-Many questions

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First Horse-Many questions

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    10-24-2012, 07:57 AM
Question First Horse-Many questions

Now that I have put an offer in on a horse pending a vet check I am starting to plan about the first weeks home. I know I need to get a copy of his vaccination and vet records. I am planning to see if I can buy a few bales of his current hay and to see if the new boarding barn will work to transition him to new hay. What other things should I plan on doing? What other questions should I ask his current owner so that I know in the future?
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    10-24-2012, 09:34 AM
Green Broke
Big Congratulations if the horse passes its PPE

One of the first things out of my mouth after I shook hands with the Seller was:

"ok, I have bought this horse and I'm not changing my mind; please give me the straight skinny on any personality quirks and what you are feeding?"

From what I've read on these forums, boarding barns are generally very gracious about helping the horse transition, so the hay should not be a problem.

Excellent idea on transitioning the hay but it's also prudent to know what they put in the horse's feed pan. I would want to know if they are feeding any extra supplements?

As long as the horse is doing well on its current feed, if you can stick with the same thing, wonderful; if not see if they will part with five or ten pounds and try to find something similar.

Unless it's sweet feed --- no no no, a thousand times no on the sweet feed. That's like giving your daughter a gallon of Hi-C and a dozen Hershey Bars for lunch and it's doing nothing but giving the horse "false" energy and possibly setting the horse up for metabolic issues later in life

Since you're in a boarding situation and don't have to worry about barn/fence safety issues, that's about it for crucial things.

Just sit back and be the standard nervous wreck everybody is when getting a new horse - especially first time owners.

Enjoy that and some wine for about a day, then it will be business as usual.

My family farmed with horses until I was four and my granddad raised Welsh/Morgans. I have never NOT had horses in my life, so I take an awful lot for granted; even though I sometimes look at questions and go "huh?!?", I haul myself up short and remember that everything from brushing a horse to picking hooves is a big deal to new horse owners.

Meaning, ask many questions on this forum, no matter how silly they might sound. It's important to KEEP the horse well-mannered and safe to ride. All-too-often the Longtime Horse Owners read "this isn't the same horse I bought six months ago".

Horses don't ruin themselves, people ruin them, so it's important to know how to properly (and fairly) handle the horse so it respects the human as the boss whenever the human is in its presence

Annnnd in order for us to be any sort of help---------------------we MUST see pictures of it
    10-24-2012, 10:24 AM
Wallaby and Fahntasia like this.
    10-24-2012, 10:35 AM
Seconded ^^

Must see pics! We are picture fanatics here! And I agree, never hesitate to ask a question here. Yes, you may get some answers that will make you want a 2nd...3rd glass of wine, but don't let that run you off.

Sounds like you've got some solid advice so far and you're doing everything the right way.
    10-24-2012, 01:19 PM
I will post pics soon. Right now I only have the crappy quality ones that are on my cell phone since the digital camera I took that day decided not to work:( and I forgot it the second time we went to see him. Just for informational purposes he is a 18 year old registered quarterhorse who has been owned and used for 4-h and equestrian team by the same family for the last 6 years. He is intended to be my daughter's first 4-h horse but he also has to put up with the timid mom riding him too ;)
texasgal likes this.
    10-24-2012, 01:22 PM
Green Broke
ITA with Walkin - and congratulations!!!! I am so happy for you and your daughter.
    10-24-2012, 03:28 PM
Green Broke
What an exciting time for both of you! Do you have a saddle, or are you buying his or a new one? Since you mention showing-English? When I bought my first horse, he went right into my back yard-being at a Barn-you will have other horse owners to talk & ride with, so take advantage of that. And the trainer is right there, too? Are there shows at the barn or do you have to trailer out somewhere?

Loking forward to pics.
themacpack likes this.
    10-24-2012, 03:39 PM
Good point. If the saddle he has fits him, it might be worth it to buy it too, unless it doesn't fit your daughter , nor you.

Be sure to give him time to adjust to his new surroundings, and don't be surprised if his behavior is different from waht you saw at his old place. Him throwing out a few challenges to see if you are worthy of owning him does not mean that he is really a monster horse and they probably drugged him and "OMG,what have I gotten myself into!"
However, if he had good manners there, and you notice them deteriorate over time with you, then you have to realize that you are not enforcing them conisistently enough andneed to take an honest loo at that.

This might not happen, but it's a frequent thing , where the new owner maybe spoils the hrose a bit , then wonders why he isn't as "nice" as he was for the orig. Owner.
walkinthewalk and themacpack like this.
    10-24-2012, 06:37 PM
I second that its very important to learn horse behavior. They are nothing like owning a dog or cat. You need to learn their language and create a partnership with them. These animals reply on subtle body language and are herd animals, which means they communicate mostly using tiny body movements (such as a flick of an ear, or a stomp of a hoof). Learn what they are saying, and this will tell you how to react. Most horses need an owner that is confident, trustworthy, and fair or they will turn into disrespectful brats. Since each herd has a hierarchy (consider it like a tiny community) almost all horses are looking for a leader. They need someone who the horse can trust to protect them, be fair, and earn respect. If you gain all these things with your horse, you will never have a problem. Some horses will always try to push the boundaries to see if they can move up the hierarchy but just remember to reestablish respect, trust, then love (or being treated fairly as the horse interprets it). They must always be done in order (such as don't just use love and not ask for respect). The horse cannot gain proper trust if they do not respect you and cannot properly learn to love if they do not have respect and trust. Sorry for the long drawn out answer. Just trying to help as much as possible. Horse ownership is wonderful, and I congratulate you on your new horse. Here's hoping he passes the PPE :).
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QuietHeartHorses likes this.
    10-24-2012, 09:28 PM
Good point bringing up establishing respect. We are planning to go visit him on Sunday and spend some time learning how he is used to things being done. I am hoping that his current rider can help my daughter and I establish a balance between what he expects and how we have learned to do things so we can know whether the sure to come misbehavior is testing the rules or confusion about what are the rules. I think we are very fortunate that we are buying him from another 4-h family in our county. They seem to want to make sure we get all our questions answered. :)

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