Well this is just annoying.
We got an email today from Pickles' former owner demanding him back. According to her, the terms of the contract "have not been met" therefore she has "folded" the agreement. She wants his registration papers, etc.. returned immedietly.
She handed him over for $100. Yes, we were wise enough to have a bill of sale, signed by both parties. "Terms" were clearly written -- she can see him, from the road, with our permission for up to one year (because we were feeling just a teensy bit sorry for her...shouldn't have even given her that much leeway.)
So she shows up a week ago when we're not there, without us knowing, and learns from BO that we're moving him to a professional barn where we can get one on one consultations and help from a very successful and knowledgeable trainer, as well as access to the proper facilities (arenas, round pen, lessons and professionals available on the spot, etc..) Location was not disclosed to her at that time. Apparently, this is what set her off.
Okay...so let me get this straight. The horse was a 2.5 on the body condition scale according to the vet. He had worn a deep path in the little corral she kept him isolated in from his ceaseless pacing. Neighbors were constantly asking if they could feed him for them, but she seemed too proud to say yes. We have been told there were times when he had absolutely no access to water. She told us all she ever did was toss a small amount of hay over the fence twice a day -- this was the extent of her interaction.
A month with us...he is just about returned to a normal weight, sans some muscling. Hasn't paced once. We have spent quite a lot in vet and farrier fees...and both people, by the way, agreed he was neglected. He gets proper amounts of high quality grass alfalfa mix, expensive supplements, regular excersise and grooming, tack that actually fits along with high-tec boots and pads in preparation for his re-entry into riding. Farrier and vet agree he will need corrective shoeing on his backs...a result of her neglect...which, omg, we will actually pay for! Happily!!
And now...she demands him back? How dare she. She admitted to us that if we didn't take him home that day, she was going to send him to the auction house within a week.
I know there isn't anything legal she can do. We have the signed bill of sale, receipts, and his papers are in our name. I just can't believe she has the absolute gall to send us a snotty little threatening email that we need to give her back the animal she neglected for so long. I freaking stood in the noisy, rattling, bumpy, frightening as **** trailer with him on the ride over to the trainer's place, because he was starting to freak out so much that he needed someone there to gently wax and wane pressure on the leadrope and provide a soothing presence. Longest three miles of my life!! But I did it because I fricking love this old man. I have already put so many hours into him...just helping him learn how to become a good citizen. This horse has mental issues we are slowly overcoming...I KNOW he will turn out just fine, but there is no way he will ever, ever go back to that woman's hands.
She SOLD him to us, signed him over, bill of sale and all, we have witnesses and everything. All because we happen to MOVE him without her permission (which, by the way, we don't need because he is OURS!), and she can't learn to move on with her life and let go of the horse who was slowly starving to death under her "care"!
ACH. Some people!