Hello- As the title says: Help me choose a horse. I have several different options. I am looking for a horse that I can use for barrels. However, there is no way I could afford a finished barrel horse or probably even a started barrel horse so that means I have to get a horse with the potential to do it. The other qualification is that the horse gets along with my miniature horses (I have two). I am not going to be doing anything super competitive as far as barrel racing and just want a good, all-around horse that I can ride on the roads, trail riding, bareback and just have a good time. So here are my options so far.
#1 Is a 9 yr. old Paint that is only "partially broke to ride" but registered. He hasn't sent me pics or a price yet so I can't tell much about him.
#2 Is a 3 yr. old bay filly who is 13hh and growing (I'd need to wait for her to stop growing before starting her on barrels). She has lots of trail miles on her, trailers, leads, and doesn't buck or rear. However she is buddy sour on her pasturemate.
#3 Is a 7 yr. old tri-colored Paint gelding. He is 13.1hh and is "green broke" but the owner thinks he has been trained to pull a cart. He doesn't neck rein or anything like that. He has been out to pasture with several minis. I have not got pics of him yet. At my max price range.
#4 Is a 9 yr. old Appaloosa. He is 15hh and is well broke. He stands tied, picks up his hooves, has no bad habits. He just had his teeth floated in May and is up to date on dewormer but didn't get his vaccinations this year. He loads out of the trailer fine but just recently started having a problem loading into the trailer. Not always, just sometimes and the owners are working on it. He gets along fine with other horses, has been going barefoot and doesn't have any bad habits (except the trailer issue obviously). The owner said she would come down $150, therefore being just at my max price range.
Please let me know what you think. I know it looks like I'm leaning towards the Appy, but that's just the owner I've talked to the most so far. I really want to get the right horse. Barrel racing is important to me and I want a horse who'll be able to do it. I don't want to buy the wrong horse and get attached (which I have a bad tendency to get attached) to it because I can't afford to get a second horse. Any input is greatly appreciated. Thanks!