Horse ownership dilemma - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 8 Old 02-16-2017, 03:41 PM Thread Starter
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Horse ownership dilemma

I have owned my beloved cob for 20 years plus and ensured that his every need has been met with love. My personal circumstances have changed drastically, he is now over 25 years old, and the life of aged companions really is a scary prospect, the thought of him being passed around terrifies me.
Does it make me a terrible person to even think of having him PTS with those that love him there and treasuring my memories? Feeling really anxious about the future for both of us 😔
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post #2 of 8 Old 02-16-2017, 03:50 PM
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No, that does not make you a terrible person. It is hard to find good homes for older horses. Health problems can come on fast and the new owns may not be prepared to deal with that. I can imagine the anxiety it could cause not knowing where your senior is. I'm selling my 6yr old and it's bad enough with him.

Remember, the horse doesn't really care. They don't get up in the morning and think about all the life they have left to live and all the things they want to do. They care about now and that you have a pocket full of treats.

Is he beginner safe? You could try to free lease him to a family with young kids who needs an old guy to tote them around. You'd still have control over him, but no financial burden.
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post #3 of 8 Old 02-16-2017, 06:24 PM
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I would also definitely look into placing him with a family of young children or a therapeutic center if he's sound enough for light work and has the right temperament. Otherwise there are some people that just enjoy having an elderly horse out in the backyard to treat as more of a pet although these situations are becoming harder to find.

Other than that no it's not a bad thing to start thinking about euthanasia. I think a lot of the time with pets (and people really) we keep them alive longer than necessary to make it easier on ourselves rather than thinking of what is best for them. I'm a firm believer that it's better to put them to sleep a week too early than a day too late.
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post #4 of 8 Old 02-17-2017, 12:03 AM
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No it doesn't make you a terrible person. I too would rather have my seniors euthanized than sent out into an unknown future. If something were to happen to me my niece has instructions to give any of my horses to family members that want them (with her keeping an eye on them), and whoever is left over sell if they're under 20, euthanize if they're over. Not that it assures the under 20's will get a good home but it's more likely if they give their new owner some good years, that person will treat them with kindness once it's time for retirement.
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post #5 of 8 Old 02-17-2017, 12:13 AM
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I'm with JCnGrace, it does not make you a terrible person. I am fortunate, I am able to care for my aging horses. I went from 5 to now 1 left, it is A LOT OF WORK, and expense. I would put my old horse down in a minute, if I could no longer care for him, instead of giving him up.
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post #6 of 8 Old 02-17-2017, 09:06 AM
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I agree, that doesn't make you a terrible person. You are thinking of your horse and being realistic. Maybe you could find someone w/ pasture board and a walk-in shelter that would have really cheap board? A therapeutic riding stable is a good idea too if he has the personality for it.
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post #7 of 8 Old 02-17-2017, 09:16 AM
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I also agree that it doesn't make you a terrible person, not one bit.
Of course you don't want him to be passed around, who knows where he can turn up. If he can be a pasture pet for someone, that's great- or I second with younger kids for light work, walking around etc. :)
Otherwise, euthanasia is the alternative option, if you cannot find a good place for him.
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post #8 of 8 Old 02-17-2017, 10:07 AM
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If I had an elderly horse in it's 20's I would far rather have it PTS than pass it on to someone else as I would always be concerned about the care that this beloved horse was getting, especially if I could not keep track of the horse and it's welfare.
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